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  1. SoCal-Doug

    Sparge liquor poll

    I'm preparing an educational segment for a brewing group I belong to. Curious how the masses feel about sparge liquor. Results and debates might give me some insights to add to my presentation :)
  2. SoCal-Doug

    Chugger issues. Wuddya think?

    Let's see if anyone has had a similar issue, and cured it... Here's the details Symptom: After about 6 batches with no issues, it would randomly "pop" "squeal for a second" and stop pumping. The motor was still turning, albeit at a higher RPM. I would shut off the pump, then restart it, then it...
  3. SoCal-Doug

    Idea... Well a proposal to brewing supply companies

    Yeast... It basically has a 6 month shelf life if treated properly and the stars line up. I propose that retailers pro-rate the price of yeast based on that 6 month window, thence the distributors pro-rate the wholesale cost back to the retailer. In other words, if its 3 months old, you can buy...
  4. SoCal-Doug

    ISO - Stout Recipe (with caviats)

    I love a good stout. Pretty much commercial stouts though. Sadly, I rarely brew them for myself because none of my family or friends like them. More often than not, I taste a homebrew stout and its 90% burned sugar, burned week old coffee grounds, charcoal, and are generally nasty. I don't need...
  5. SoCal-Doug

    4th batch with BS3 - pH is way off

    As I did with BS2, I have always cut the recommended acid adjustments in half, then tested with a meter, then adjusted again if needed. After a few batches with BS3, it's still way off. What is up with their software? Am I consistently doing something wrong? Yesterday I did a batch of kolsch...
  6. SoCal-Doug

    Can someone point me in the right direction?

    I've never made cheese but would like to try something from my childhood that I really miss and crave. Back when I was young (maybe early to mid 70's), my dad would make cheese. I loved it and we used it for many things. My favorite was to simply break a chunk off and sprinkle a little salt on...
  7. SoCal-Doug

    3068 is like watching grass grow

    For most wheat beers in the past, I've used a WLP strain. More recently I've been using cultured dregs from Allegash (it's seriously an awesome yeast). I'm used to them finishing in 4 to 6 days. This batch is a bit of an experiment. In our recent efforts to get less clove and more banana, we...
  8. SoCal-Doug

    Slacking in so-cal. Time to shop.

    That moment that a couple taps are unexpectedly dry and the grain bins are seriously low. Anyone have the golden ticket for full bags of grain in the southern commiefornia area? This week I'm needing German Pilsner (Belgian Pilsner would be ok), Wheat, and Maris Otter. There's a few grains that...
  9. SoCal-Doug

    Anyone else coming to life?

    While out doing some yard work I noticed fresh green buds emerging. Checked the others and they are doing the same thing. This goofy weather has all my fruit trees in a confused state, but now all three of my hop species think its time to come out and play. They have never started this early...
  10. SoCal-Doug

    What duh heck was that?

    So i'm at my local brew supply place today picking up some odds and ends for this weekend's brewing antics. I see this "thing" on the counter and really didn't pay attention but on my drive home I kept thinking about it... It looked like a cheesy 1 or maybe 2 gallon stainless percolator type...
  11. SoCal-Doug

    Madagascar Vanilla

    Ouch! What in the hell is with the price on those beans lately? Is there some bad political tariff juju with Africa or something? Is there another vanilla bean that I can use for a porter that wont break the bank but still have a wonderful flavor?
  12. SoCal-Doug

    A question for judges

    I'm looking at an upcoming competition. I've entered some before but this time I downloaded the forms and my brain went on a tangent for no reason at all, but i'm curious... Do most competitions require you to document the entire recipe and process for a brew being judged? And WHY? If you enter...
  13. SoCal-Doug

    I'm not brewing another batch

    Until I buy some cushy/gelly insoles. Or maybe some of those rubber mats for restaurant kitchens and bartenders. Maybe both. I'm not sure what hurts more. The feet or the lower back. But on a good note. It was a textbook perfect brew day. Nailed the numbers and will refill the Saison keg soon...
  14. SoCal-Doug

    Bulk grains - Southern California

    Anyone have the golden ticket for bulk base malts around the area? Our little handful of brewers would love to save a few more bucks if its possible. Primarily Maris Otter, German/Belgian Pilsner and Wheat. I don't mind supporting local places for specialty grains, but i'm thinking there must be...
  15. SoCal-Doug

    Yes, son. All beer looks like that before it's beer

    So I've got a split batch of Wit fermenting in the garage since the beer fridge is full (love it when the weather cooperates). One of them is cultured dregs from Allagash White. The other is WLP400. Day four with full krausen. My son is yelling from the back door... Son: "Hey dad, what the heck...
  16. SoCal-Doug

    Dumb question, but humor me

    Since I've built up my third rig and have some batches through it, I've been pondering on something... I use a typical 3 vessel (converted sanke) HERMS system (HLT, MLT, BK), "hard plumbed" with valves. The MLT has a simple pickup tube and domed false bottom. The thermometer and RTD are on the...
  17. SoCal-Doug

    Any opinions based on your experience

    Brewin up a wit this weekend... Nothing fancy, just some sessionable refreshment to keep in one of the kegs. 50/50 with a touch of citrus zest and a hint of cracked coriander. I normally also add a handful of flaked oats or carapils. I picked up a couple 4 packs of Allagash White that are only...
  18. SoCal-Doug

    3711 still blows my mind

    Has anyone mentioned lately, what a beast 3711 is? Brew date: 10/7 Est OG: 1.054 Act OG: 1.057 Cold crashed: 10/18 (after being stable for 3 days) Est FG: 1.008 Act FG: 1.003 Est Att: 85% Act Att: 93% Est Mash Eff: 86% Act Mash Eff: 92% Mash temp: 150 Ferment temp: 76 to 80 I think...
  19. SoCal-Doug

    Lesson learned

    Felt like sharing. If it saves someone from a similar headache, it's a good thing :) I decided to brew up another batch of Saison. Not having much for grains in personal stock, my son and I head over to the local supplier. I weighed them out, handed each bin to my son, he went to the back and...
  20. SoCal-Doug

    Lessons learned - First brew on the new system

    After many years of brewing on different systems, I took the leap of faith and built up an electric rig. Yesterday was the inaugural brew day. Started with an old favorite simple wheat beer. At the end of the day, I reviewed my numbers and results in beersmith and was very pleased. I of course...