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Old 08-15-2008, 04:35 AM   #11
King of Cascade
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I would only use beans
Why there is other stuff to experiment with


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Extracts are really sketchy
I ran an ice cream facility and use Madagascar bourbon vanilla 4X in our award winning vanilla ice cream. The stuff cost about $300 a gallon and had to be shipped as hazardous freight. I can tell you this; I would never spend that much money on a "Sketchy” product. I have seen some smaller bottles out there for a good price.
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Old 08-15-2008, 05:13 AM   #12
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I'd also use something besides what they provide you. I got a raspberry porter kit from them that came with some extract to add at bottling. It didn't come through at all in about 90% of the batch, and just ever so slightly came through in the rest of it.
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Old 08-15-2008, 02:08 PM   #13
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I know beanilla.com sells a vanilla powder, I suspect that is similar to what AHS includes. They suggest the darker the powder the higher the quality. Also, Forest from AHS monitors the forum but since you can't search on a three letter search term he will be more likely to chime in with an answer if you type out Austin Homebrew Supply.

When I did my Vanilla Bean Porter I used two beans (just the guts scraped from the inside). But they were from the grocery store and where what my wife had in the kitchen. The next time I make it (September) I'm going to order from beanilla.com. And no I'm not a paid shill but the did see their banner advertisements on this forum before and their prices look good.
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Old 08-15-2008, 02:44 PM   #14
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I've always used whole beans, split and scraped in my secondary. My experience is that it's a bit tough to gauge the strength though. I split an AG batch with a club buddy and I added one whole bean and he added two (got them at different places) and mine ended up stronger than his oddly enough.

Not sure how you gauge individual beans.

On the bright side, both came out really nice... just different strengths of vanilla taste.
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