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  1. L

    California Sacramento: barley/hops for sale

    I'm putting my brewing on hiatus for a while and I don't want to keep my ingredients around until I start brewing again. I store the grain in the 6.5 gallon food safe buckets with gamma seals. The grain is all about 6 months old but it's never been out of the buckets since I bought it. Each...
  2. L

    Fading chocolate flavor in a stout

    I brewed a stout a few weeks ago and it's been on tap since 8/28. When I first kegged it, it had a slightly harsh up-front bitterness which faded quickly and left an absolutely delicious chocolate finish. If you've ever had a Boulder Chocolate Shake Porter, the finish reminded me of that. What I...
  3. L

    Mechanics of adjusting mash pH

    Now that I have a pH meter, a question has popped up in my mind. You're supposed to measure mash pH at room temperature, 15 minutes into the mash so the pH will stabilize - is this correct? Even if you can cool a sample to room temp in 5 minutes, you're still 20 minutes into the mash. Isn't...
  4. L

    The best beer I ever tried

    I went to the Sacramento Capitol Beer Fest this past Sunday (3/9). One beer I tried stood out from the rest. A bourbon barrel aged Russian imperial stout on cherries. It was from Speakeasy in San Francisco. Oh. My. God. This beer was amazing. Complex, fruity, boozy, smooth, oaky...
  5. L

    Efficiency too high?

    Some of you might be aware that I've been trying to troubleshoot why a lot of my batches (but not all) have come out tasting pretty awful. I've been trying to come up with other possible culprits besides water profile and infection (please don't derail this thread and bring those topics up here...
  6. L

    Question about Bru 'N Water

    I was using Bru 'N water today for an upcoming brew day like I always do and for whatever reason, I decided to double-check the ion concentrations against the values in the Palmer book, page 166 of the 3rd edition. I'm brewing a 10 gallon batch of Amber ale. I'm building up off 100% distilled...
  7. L

    Is this a reasonable water profile?

    I brewed an American Ale a while ago and I just wanted to check and see if this is a good water profile. I use RO water from a glacier water vending machine. I've never tested the water that comes out of it, but they are supposed to be very good at delivering close to as pure H2O as you can...
  8. L

    I tried Pliny the Younger

    I live almost exactly two hours from Russian River Brewing company in Santa Rosa. I figured that the middle of the week would be a good day to do. I realized that we would be standing in line for probably an hour or so anyway, but I was prepared. I wasn't prepared for how wrong I was. We...
  9. L

    Brewcraft 30L fermenters

    I ferment almost exclusively in BrewCraft 30L plastic fermenters. I have a couple of questions about these (that I probably should have asked a while ago). 1. Do I need to protect the beer inside from UV light? Or is the bucket an adequate shield? 2. After many batches, they have developed...
  10. L

    BeerSmith mash temps

    This drives me nuts. BeerSmith just will not cooperate and give me the right strike water temp. I have a 10 gallon igloo cooler with a copper manifold. I am ALWAYS off by a few degrees, sometimes too hot, sometimes too cold but unlike the Goldilocks and the three bears, it has never been just...
  11. L

    Beer spillage

    So I opened up the keezer this morning to drop the PSI back down on a couple of kegs I was carbonating and I got a strong beer smell when I opened the lid. That's weird - beer is supposed to be in the kegs, right? Well, not today. There is about 2" of beer in the bottom of my keezer. I...
  12. L

    Adapting late hop additions to AA%

    Let's say I have a recipe that calls for: A bittering charge of Columbus 1 oz of Cascade at 15 mins 1 oz of Cascade at 5 mins 2 oz of Cascade at 1 min I brewed this beer about 6 months ago with Cascade that was 5.5% AA. Since then I went through a pound of Cascade and bought another...
  13. L

    How often do you clean taps?

    How often do you completely disassemble your taps, including every washer and ring, soak them all in PBW and then star-san? Every keg? Every other? If you don't disassemble every time, do you clean in place every time?
  14. L

    Bru n water and wheat beer

    I'm planning a wheat IPA and when I sat down to work out the mineral water additions, I realized that I don't know how to classify wheat products that get mashed. My recipe calls for 2 lbs of wheat, but I don't know how to categorize it in the mash. Is it considered base malt?
  15. L

    Infection?

    I guess everyone has to post one of these sooner or later. This is a Chinook IPA that I dry-hopped a week ago. I stitched a paint strainer bag together, boiled it and an extra stainless fitting for 15 mins, put the hops in the bag and sealed it back up. I was about to keg it and I didn't...
  16. L

    I'm losing my mind over this

    I am absolutely stumped at why my beer continues to taste bad. It tastes great right up until I keg it. I taste the FG sample and it's always fine. After a couple of days on gas, the beer completely changes. Hop flavor and aroma all but disappear. The beer takes on a bad flavor. My girlfriend...
  17. L

    Over-sparging with small grain bills

    I typically get between 85% and 90% mash efficiency with my setup. I have brewed Biermuncher's Centennial blonde ale a couple of times and I've always overshot the gravity by quite a few points. The beer has come out good so I haven't complained. But if I wanted to brew the recipe to the real...
  18. L

    Over-chilled wort

    I brewed Biermuncher's OktoberFAST yesterday (I know, I'm a procrastinator) and I usually stick the 75-ish degree wort into the chest freezer to cool it the rest of the way down before pitching the yeast. I also had a poker tournament yesterday and I left the wort in the freezer for about 5...
  19. L

    Ideal bicarbonate level

    Palmer's book gives the following information about ideal bicarbonate levels: 0-50 ppm for pale, base-malt only beers 50-150 ppm for amber colored, toasted malt beers 150-250 ppm for dark, roasted malt beers The Bru'n Water spreadsheet says: Bicarbonate does not have an ideal range...
  20. L

    Water - I think I was doing it wrong

    A while back I had a hard time making light beers that tasted right but stouts and porters tasted fine. After talking to some people, and having people taste the beers, I learned that I can't use my tap water to brew light beers. After making a few batches with added gypsum and epsom salts, I...
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