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  1. SoCal-Doug

    Anyone else coming to life?

    Maybe the so-cal (inland empire) weather was my problem. All of mine broke ground months ago and were stunted at 2" off the ground, but looked healthy. A couple weeks ago the Sterling shot up like a banshee and its already at roof level. Willamette and EKG are still in a time stop. Such a weird...
  2. SoCal-Doug

    Anyone else coming to life?

    Update.. I had given up on mine after none of the [great] suggestions here helped. Yesterday, my 2nd year Sterling that had only grown a foot and stopped about a month ago (albeit looking very healthy still), shot up another vine about a foot and a half away from the main bunch, and started...
  3. SoCal-Doug

    Anyone else coming to life?

    same location and everything I did last year water: yep 10-11 hours/sun per day fertilized sandy clay soil. sterling (1.5 ft then stopped) Willamette (4 inches) EKG (4 inches) region: southern California
  4. SoCal-Doug

    Anyone else coming to life?

    I'm stumped. Mine have been stuck for over a month. I'm about ready to dig them out and start again. Last year (first year) 2 of the 3 flavors got about 10 feet but never coned, the third got to about a foot tall and stayed there. This year, the one that failed last year got to about a foot and...
  5. SoCal-Doug

    Can someone analyze my water report?

    Not much to analyze, because different styles of beer have different water requirements. As it stands, it's not bad. Probably ok for a pale ale or light golden somethingeranother. The sulfate/chloride ratio is a bit on the malty side (compared with a bitter or hoppy side) but neither value is...
  6. SoCal-Doug

    Beer turned out HORRIBLE!

    IMO... Your recipe is fine (might be a tad high on the coriander if its really fresh and slightly crushed). Your fermentation got too hot. It generated some esters, phenols, and fusels that are not agreeing with your taste buds. No harm, no foul. Future: Keep it below 70 for at least the first...
  7. SoCal-Doug

    Any recommendations for a 240 V element for 20 qt kettles?

    I've been super happy with the ones I picked up on Kal's (electric brewery) site. After 20 or 30 batches, they still look like brand new. I got the 240V 5500W squiggly ones. I'm sure he has multiple sizes and ratings of the same flavor.
  8. SoCal-Doug

    Correcting Astringency

    This has nothing to do with the O/P question about astringency, but... Carapils, crystal 60 and chocolate have zero diastatic potential. The kilning process has destroyed the enzymes. The pale chocolate has a lower DP than regular pale malts. Depending on the brand of the DME, it may or may...
  9. SoCal-Doug

    Hop my Kolsch!

    There's a lot of factors involved, and a true kolsch yeast throws some very unique esters and phenols (one reason I don't like 029, its boring and blah, and not a kolsch yeast, albeit very clean). They (Chuckanut) may be pitching below 65 and letting it ramp up as do not generate the esters...
  10. SoCal-Doug

    Hop my Kolsch!

    2L for a 5 gallon batch isn't bad. Remember, you are decanting and therefore probably not getting 100% of the viable yeast cells. Also, there is a chance that his yeast is not brand new. My local shops are carrying nothing but near dead giga, so I have a habit of trying to rehabilitate them :)...
  11. SoCal-Doug

    Heating element and HERMS coil location

    I recommend that they do not touch. That element is a hot sumbitch. There is also an electrical line running through the middle of it. There will also be vibration during brewing that can wear both surfaces. Not sure how big your HLT is, but I use 15.5 gallon kegs. I was able to mount the...
  12. SoCal-Doug

    Bottling my first brew soon (this weekend)?

    American brewers rarely ferment on the banana side for wheats. Go grab a bottle of Franzishaner Weissbier, or similar actual German/Bavarian wheat. The banana esters will smack you in the forehead as soon as you open the bottle. I LOVE Bavarian wheats :) With most wheat yeasts, as you ferment...
  13. SoCal-Doug

    Hop my Kolsch!

    One of my fav's and i'll give some ideas after 3 best of show wins and a few 1st's and 2nd's with my Kolsch's. Sterling. It's an Americanized Saaz. Saaz is one of the most common hops used in the Koln region. The other most common would be German Spalt. No more than about 18 IBU's for bittering...
  14. SoCal-Doug

    Correcting Astringency

    I see nothing obvious for a cause of astringency. Possibly the darker grains with an unknown water chemistry profile. Not quite raising my eyebrow about that though. If you squeezed or twisted up the steeping bag or tried to compress the grains to get extra wort, you could have released some...
  15. SoCal-Doug

    Bottling my first brew soon (this weekend)?

    At 1.010 five days prior, I would say its way done.
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