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Fyi, we can now order 6g sachets of Steam Hops through Beermkr's website, which could be pretty useful - in principle, one could make a simple malt/hop "tea" by adding character malts and steam hops to water at ~170˚, letting it cool, adding it to sterile water, blending in DME, pitching yeast, et voila - some of the easiest beer imaginable

I'll personally be trying out this exact method shortly - imagine that plus Lutra and a spunding valve and you could have a two- or three-day Stout with basically zero effort!
Please "report back" with your experiences with Steam Hops.
 

HardyFool

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Re: Steam Hops, they definitely work - I have yet to make a hop-forward beer, like an Ordinary Bitter, which I will definitely be trying at some point, but to add IBUs to a Porter and even a Hazy, they worked like a charm. If adding IBUs is your goal, give them a shot, and I'll update y'all once I've tried to, you know, taste them.

Oh, and what could the use case for these possibly be? An all-DME (i.e. no character malt) beer, which you could literally stick blend together with sterile (read: bottled) water at room temp (15 minute Golden Ale, anyone?), or the more obvious route: hopping a sour. Though in fairness, since we don't really have access to isomerized hop extract, these could be used to nudge up IBUs in a finished beer as well.
 

aceluby

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Lurker, first time poster, and one gallon brewing lover here - seriously read most of this thread over the last month when I started this hobby. Best part of one gallon brewing is how often I get to brew. I’ve got 5 LBMB going right now with an Imperial Lager, a seltzer, two red ales, and an IPA - all in different stages. This weekend I’m bottling up the lager and seltzer and have already drank a few gallons of different ales with 20 or so bottle conditioning now. In a month I already have about a dozen brews under my belt and keep getting more confident with the process (AG and extract). Also bought a one gallon keg to get some experience there as well. Some things I’ve already learned:
  • Mashing is ridiculously easy in the oven. Get the water to 170, add the grain, stir, then the oven at the lowest setting is pretty much set it and forget it.
  • Heating a little over a gallon of clean water, then sparging the mash slowly over the boiling kettle makes the process super easy with almost no mess.
  • For my hoppy beers I’ve been skipping the last two hop additions and instead add it to my cooling wort for much better aroma and flavor.
  • Started harvesting yeast and it’s already starting to overtake my fridge. I can make a gallon for $5-6 now.
  • Oxidation is my #1 enemy, but that beer still goes down smooth if I throw some grapefruit juice in the glass with it.
  • Kegging in a one gallon keg is easy and lets me drink my beer almost immediately. I also seem to get a lot less oxidation this way.
  • My SO supports my hobby because the kitchen is almost always immaculate.
  • Winging recipes is stupidly fun once you have a basic understanding of what things do what.
I’m hoping my order of grain comes in so I can make a pseudo lager this weekend. Otherwise I’ll finish off the last gallon of my 5 gallon IPA kit and have a LBMB ready for when my order comes next week.

Cheers everyone!
 
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Welcome to HomeBrewTalk @aceluby !

With regard to oxidation, if you are bottling, there are a couple of topics where people talk about bottling techniques that minimize the impact - ancedotals of NEIPAs good for a couple of months after bottling. If you stay with bottling & can't find the topics, let me know.
 

HardyFool

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  • Oxidation is my #1 enemy, but that beer still goes down smooth if I throw some grapefruit juice in the glass with it.
  • Kegging in a one gallon keg is easy and lets me drink my beer almost immediately. I also seem to get a lot less oxidation this way.

If you're looking for fairly extreme oxygen protection, you can do what I do (if you have a fermenter with a spigot, this wouldn't work with most racking canes) which is to:

- purge a keg, and fill it with a few psi of CO2
- rig a gas ball lock to a few feet of tubing that can fit inside the neck of an airlock - not the S-type
- rig a liquid ball lock to tubing which will fit onto your spigot
- hook up both connectors at the same time, so they're both CO2 purged (I partially engage each so I can do them one at a time, that works too)
- place the gas tube into the neck of your fermenter, which, of course, is virtually oxygen-free, and the liquid tube onto your spigot, and gravity rack (though an inline transfer pump would also be fine)

The beer flowing into your keg will push the CO2 in the keg through the tubing and into your fermenter, blanketing your beer, meaning you have a virtually flawless transfer. This is essentially a closed transfer, but it's not conducted under pressure, and I doubt purging the tubing would be so crucial if you had a larger volume of beer to work with, so I figured I'd call it out as opposed to just saying "do a closed transfer."

Or, ferment in a keg with a spunding valve, and transfer under pressure! I'm nervous about getting kegs that dirty, or rather I don't like to deep-clean kegs often and I feel like you'd have to if fermenting in them, but that's probably a marginally better option if you're willing to do it.

If you knew all this, my apologies, and hey, someone probably didn't!
 

Homebrew Harry

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Lurker, first time poster, and one gallon brewing lover here - seriously read most of this thread over the last month when I started this hobby. Best part of one gallon brewing is how often I get to brew. I’ve got 5 LBMB going right now with an Imperial Lager, a seltzer, two red ales, and an IPA - all in different stages. This weekend I’m bottling up the lager and seltzer and have already drank a few gallons of different ales with 20 or so bottle conditioning now. In a month I already have about a dozen brews under my belt and keep getting more confident with the process (AG and extract). Also bought a one gallon keg to get some experience there as well. Some things I’ve already learned:
  • Mashing is ridiculously easy in the oven. Get the water to 170, add the grain, stir, then the oven at the lowest setting is pretty much set it and forget it.
  • Heating a little over a gallon of clean water, then sparging the mash slowly over the boiling kettle makes the process super easy with almost no mess.
  • For my hoppy beers I’ve been skipping the last two hop additions and instead add it to my cooling wort for much better aroma and flavor.
  • Started harvesting yeast and it’s already starting to overtake my fridge. I can make a gallon for $5-6 now.
  • Oxidation is my #1 enemy, but that beer still goes down smooth if I throw some grapefruit juice in the glass with it.
  • Kegging in a one gallon keg is easy and lets me drink my beer almost immediately. I also seem to get a lot less oxidation this way.
  • My SO supports my hobby because the kitchen is almost always immaculate.
  • Winging recipes is stupidly fun once you have a basic understanding of what things do what.
I’m hoping my order of grain comes in so I can make a pseudo lager this weekend. Otherwise I’ll finish off the last gallon of my 5 gallon IPA kit and have a LBMB ready for when my order comes next week.

Cheers everyone!
Great first post ! I also use the oven for mashing small batches.
 

aceluby

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I think I’ve figured out my oxidation issues. Last few batches have been on point by skipping racking to a pot with sugar and priming the bottles directly, filling one bottle then capping it immediately, being very careful with dry hopping and moving in general, and only bottling with the 4 LBMB I have with a spigot and kegging the one that needs a racking cane.

Bottled up my imperial honey pseudo-lager last night and it’s probably my best one yet. Gave it 3 weeks with lutra, so it’s super clear, and the taste of it was exactly what I was going for pre-bottling.

My grain order was delayed, but a local shop had some 5 gal extract kits for $20 each, so I picked up a few of those to hold me over. I really want to do a lager next, but will have to wait until next weekend
 

HardyFool

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I think I’ve figured out my oxidation issues. Last few batches have been on point by skipping racking to a pot with sugar and priming the bottles directly, filling one bottle then capping it immediately, being very careful with dry hopping and moving in general, and only bottling with the 4 LBMB I have with a spigot and kegging the one that needs a racking cane.

Nice! Yeah, pre-priming the bottles kinda blows but that definitely helped me avoid Oxygen as well, especially for hoppier beers
 

jpitz31

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I am a proud 1 gallon brewer. It is a great way to test out and refine receipts. Also I can try alot of different beer styles rather quickly. When I dial in a receipt then if wanted I can dial up to 2.5 or 3 gallons.
 

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aceluby

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There’s two things I love most about brewing a gallon at a time. I can do it fairly quickly on my stove, and I have a wide variety of beers on hand.

Tomorrow I’m bringing a case to my sisters 4th of July party that will contain Imperial Honey ale, a red ale, a grapefruit seltzer, a pseudo lager/blonde ale, and some IPAs. The next day I’m brining a small keg of blonde to a friends party.

On the brewing side, I bottled a hefe that tasted like bananas in a really good way, so I made a batch adding some sugared apricots that I’m very excited for. I also just tweaked my imperial honey recipe to something I’d call a German Imperial Honey Ale that has a little munich for color and a bit less honey than the last one I did. No joke, the lutra I used was already down the blowoff tube within 30 minutes.

I also had a really bad batch I bottled of a Belgian that I’m going to wait as long as possible on. It was an abbey ale yeast that I just don’t think I like with a 5 gallon kit. So I modified the kit the for the second gallon, added a bit more hops (chinook at flame out), and used S-04 for the yeast. Will be a very different beer, hoping for something extremely balanced.

In just a few months I have 20+ brews under my belt and am starting to feel very confident in my process and think I can make some excellent beer shortly. I probably should upgrade to a 3 or 5 gallon eventually, but dang if I’m not having a great time with 1 gallon brews
 

mashpaddled

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I think I’ve figured out my oxidation issues. Last few batches have been on point by skipping racking to a pot with sugar and priming the bottles directly, filling one bottle then capping it immediately, being very careful with dry hopping and moving in general, and only bottling with the 4 LBMB I have with a spigot and kegging the one that needs a racking cane.

Bottled up my imperial honey pseudo-lager last night and it’s probably my best one yet. Gave it 3 weeks with lutra, so it’s super clear, and the taste of it was exactly what I was going for pre-bottling.

My grain order was delayed, but a local shop had some 5 gal extract kits for $20 each, so I picked up a few of those to hold me over. I really want to do a lager next, but will have to wait until next weekend

I always felt like I got too much bottle variation this way but that may be my imagination.

I bottle my one gallon batches out of a bottling bucket but the usual bottling buckets are too big for our purposes and I feel like it leaves a lot of beer behind in the bucket. I bought a two gallon bucket and drilled a hole for the spigot as low to the bottom as I could get. I have a lot less oxidation with this bucket and only lose a few ounces which tend to have some trub in it anyway.

All you need is to hit up a hardware store in the paint section. You'll find two gallon white HDPE buckets. (You could buy a one gallon bucket if you would rather.) You also need a drill with a hole saw bit to cut the hole. You will need to measure the diameter of the spigot you already have and use a hole saw bit as close to the diameter of the exterior of the threads on the back of the spigot. Some spigots are larger than others so measure what you have. It doesn't need to be precise because the gasket will seal the hole as long as the hole isn't too much bigger. When you cut the hole you need to secure or hold down the bucket so it doesn't go flying and cut slowly. The smaller buckets are thinner than larger buckets so it won't take much to cut through it or to catch the bit and cut the hole in an irregular shape.
 

aceluby

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Been cruising through my brews, doing 3 brew days a week after the kids go to bed. Weekdays I’ll do an extract brew, just to cut down on time, then one to two full grain brews on the weekend. Two carboys are dedicated to two week fermenters, while my smaller one is a weekly one I do with Lutra - either a blonde, citra APA, or honey beer - all of which are easy drinkers and staples in the fridge.

Other than that I’ve got a couple IPAs, a DIPA, an apricot hefe, a mango hefe, a black IPA, a lager, a California common, an amber, an imperial honey, and a blonde ale all in various states of fermenting and bottle conditioning.

The good drinkers right now are the citra, IPA, and the blonde - so need to make more of those. Started a brew log to start keeping track so I can reproduce and get better. My wife is even starting to drink them
 

CascadesBrewer

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I might not be playing by the rules, as this was a 3 gallon batch that was split into 3 fermenters. These are ready to bottle today, so I have not tried any samples since I pitched the yeast. The beer itself is a Marris Otter + BRU-1 SMaSH.

It was my first time trying out the "1-gallon" Fermonster that I have had for a year or so. The fermenter tops out at about 1.2 gallon to the very top, so a full 1 gallon bath is pushing the limits, but worked fine for a temperature controlled US-05 ferment. The biggest flaw with the Fermonster is how thin and flexible the wall are (the same for the 3-gallon, my 7-gallon is much thicker).

I have used the PET Little Big Mouth Bubblers a few times. I love the thicker walled sides and the extra space in the LBMB. I had to strap down the lid on the Lutra batch to keep it from popping out. I tried flipping over the gasket as I have seen suggested, and it did not really help.



IMG_4092.JPG
 

CascadesBrewer

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I did put out this video recently on brewing a pair of 1-gallon extract-based single hop batches. These turned out excellent. This was my first time using Lutra.

Recipe for Simcoe and Azacca Samplers.
• 1.25 gal [4.75L] Water*
• 1 lb [450g] of Golden Light Dry Malt Extract
• 0.15 lbs [2.4 oz or 68 g] Table Sugar
• 0.25 oz [7 g] Hops - boil 10 minutes
• 0.75 oz [21 g] Hops - steep 20 minute steep at 180°F [82°C]
• 2.75 g Lutra dry yeast
* 1.20 or 1.15 gallons of water might be a better amount to get 1.0 gallons into the fermenter.


 

aceluby

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I might not be playing by the rules, as this was a 3 gallon batch that was split into 3 fermenters. These are ready to bottle today, so I have not tried any samples since I pitched the yeast. The beer itself is a Marris Otter + BRU-1 SMaSH.

It was my first time trying out the "1-gallon" Fermonster that I have had for a year or so. The fermenter tops out at about 1.2 gallon to the very top, so a full 1 gallon bath is pushing the limits, but worked fine for a temperature controlled US-05 ferment. The biggest flaw with the Fermonster is how thin and flexible the wall are (the same for the 3-gallon, my 7-gallon is much thicker).

I have used the PET Little Big Mouth Bubblers a few times. I love the thicker walled sides and the extra space in the LBMB. I had to strap down the lid on the Lutra batch to keep it from popping out. I tried flipping over the gasket as I have seen suggested, and it did not really help.



View attachment 775797
Yeah, the lutra with little headroom pretty much requires a blowoff tube. I’ve been dry hopping on pitch lately, but for the lutra I have to wait a couple days because it clogged my blowoff tube
 

aceluby

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Ok, so made a pale ale smash with citra and harvested lutra just now. Between the time I pitched and aerated and prepped the area it’s going to ferment in (about 3 minutes), it had already formed a krausen and was coming out the blowout hole before the tube got attached. Never seen or heard anything like that before. Thought I’d at least have 10 minutes, but should have known when after I pitched and before aerating I was already seeing some action in the carboy. Crazy!
 

BongoYodeler

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Ok, so made a pale ale smash with citra and harvested lutra just now. Between the time I pitched and aerated and prepped the area it’s going to ferment in (about 3 minutes), it had already formed a krausen and was coming out the blowout hole before the tube got attached. Never seen or heard anything like that before. Thought I’d at least have 10 minutes, but should have known when after I pitched and before aerating I was already seeing some action in the carboy. Crazy!
To date Lutra has been the most explosive yeast I've used.
 

aceluby

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To date Lutra has been the most explosive yeast I've used.
I lost at least one bottle of beer in the active fermentation process to blowoff. Next time I’m planning to pitch half and see where that goes.

On a side note, I bought a 5 gallon amber ale extract kit from northern brewer and have brewed with it twice and it tastes like absolute garbage. I have dozens of brews under my belt and have used different carboys for each with two different yeasts, and both have this just awful taste. I thought it was a water issue, so used bottled the 2nd time and the same flavor came out. The only thing common between the two is the LME, so is it possible the LME was brewed wrong or has gone rancid? It smells fine and no visible mold, but good god is the final product just terrible. I only paid $20 for the kit, so I think I’m just gonna toss it
 
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so is it possible the LME was brewed wrong or has gone rancid?

[...]
I only paid $20 for the kit, so I think I’m just gonna toss it

Color of wort made from just LME could be a way to visually estimate LME quality. BYO's Big Book of Homebrewing, 1e, p 19 offers a technique to test color of extract. There is this (link) article on LME freshness and color. Finally, note that ome supplier product information sheets include color information.

I did a similar 'test' back in March when brewing a test batch with LME. I took a sample the wort (no steeping grains in the wort at that point in the process), diluted it to OG 44, and viewed the color in a hydrometer tube. The expected color was around 4, the actual color was around 10 - and some those off flavors from stale LME were present in the final beer. I suspect I could have made a recipe adjustment - brewed a hoppy amber / brown instead of an APA by adding more hops.

It may be possible to do a similar test by making a small wort sample at the start of brew day.
 

aceluby

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Yeah, that’s a good idea since I’ve only tasted the beer and not the wort. Worth a shot before I toss it. The beer tastes like plastic, which is usually a water problem, but this is the only time it’s ever showed up and I controlled for it the second time (btw, hoppy plastic is really gross)
 

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I'm a one gallon beer brewer just getting started. I've been brewing fruit juice wines and meads for a few years now, also one gallon. There doesn't really seem to be a downside that I can pinpoint with one gallon brews. The brews are easy to move around and are pretty low effort. Keep things simple, small, manageable and experimental. If I discover something that is "off the hook" great, I could easily step up to bigger brews.
 

aceluby

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The only downside is the good beer you brew you only have 9-12 of instead of 50. My DIPA I just brewed was gone within a week, so now I’m making a double batch this weekend
 

aceluby

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I haven’t seen it mentioned in this thread, but if you are a single gallon brewer and don’t have Emma Christensen’s “Brew Better Beer” book, do yourself a favor and pick it up. It has recipes for all the major styles in both 1 gallon and 5 gallon increments, and I have yet to find a bad one, just ignore all the secondary fermentation stuff.

I’ve made the Pale Ale, Smash, IPA, DIPA, Black IPA, Cali Common, Pilsner, and have the Oktoberfest fermenting now. Not only does it have all the recipes, but it also gives ideas on how to tweak them - which I did with a bunch of extract hefes I made (apricot, mango, blueberry). It’s been my go-to for the last dozen or so brews and can’t recommend it enough. Just a great book.
 

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I haven’t seen it mentioned in this thread, but if you are a single gallon brewer and don’t have Emma Christensen’s “Brew Better Beer” book, do yourself a favor and pick it up. It has recipes for all the major styles in both 1 gallon and 5 gallon increments, and I have yet to find a bad one, just ignore all the secondary fermentation stuff.
I took your word for it and bought the kindle version sight unseen. Off to do some reading now. Cheers!
 
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kindle version sight unseen
A couple of years ago, I purchased a couple of kindle books that "didn't work out" for me. At that time, I was able to return them, within a day or two of purchase, without any additional questions. Times change, so YMMV.

And, FWIW, the Kindle edition of Mastering Homebrew (Mosher) is still $2.99 today. IMO, it's a god book from a good author (HomeBrewFinds (link) mentioned the book was on sale recently).
 

aceluby

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I took your word for it and bought the kindle version sight unseen. Off to do some reading now. Cheers!
I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. I have the hardcover version and constantly go back to it over many other brewing books I have, mostly because of the “make it your own” section of each style recipe for ideas to try. If you like IPAs, try either the DIPA or the Very Good IPA. Both are wonderful
 

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@BrewnWKopperKat, please allow me to clarify. From the Amazon page for the book "mastering homebrew", I did a search on the string "one gallon" in the reviews in the hope that someone that reviewed the book may have commented on anything related to one gallon brewing. There were no results returned.
 
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@MrClient : thanks for the clarification.

Mastering Homebrew isn't focused on any specific batch size. I's an "all-grain" and "how to design your own recipes" book.

Ar $4.00 - roughly half the price of a pint of craft beer - for many it could be an early purchase of a book of high value at an exceptionally low price
 

CascadesBrewer

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@BrewnWKopperKat, please allow me to clarify. From the Amazon page for the book "mastering homebrew", I did a search on the string "one gallon" in the reviews in the hope that someone that reviewed the book may have commented on anything related to one gallon brewing. There were no results returned.

Honestly, I would look for any solid recipe book and then just scale the recipes to 1 gallon. Don't limit yourself to just the few authors that have published 1 gallon recipe books. Especially considering that "1 gallon" might mean, "enough to leave some headspace in a 1 gallon jug", "a full 1 gallon into the fermenter", or "a full 1 gallon of packaged beer".
 

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Honestly, I would look for any solid recipe book and then just scale the recipes to 1 gallon. Don't limit yourself to just the few authors that have published 1 gallon recipe books. Especially considering that "1 gallon" might mean, "enough to leave some headspace in a 1 gallon jug", "a full 1 gallon into the fermenter", or "a full 1 gallon of packaged beer".
I appreciate your honesty. Brew on good people!
 

mashpaddled

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Honestly, I would look for any solid recipe book and then just scale the recipes to 1 gallon. Don't limit yourself to just the few authors that have published 1 gallon recipe books. Especially considering that "1 gallon" might mean, "enough to leave some headspace in a 1 gallon jug", "a full 1 gallon into the fermenter", or "a full 1 gallon of packaged beer".

Definitely this. I've been brewing one gallon recipes for a little over a decade and there's nothing particularly different about recipes at five gallons versus one gallon.

The two things you need to consider are (1) your deadspace in your system and (2) boiloff volumes. If you lose a tenth of a gallon to dead space in your system, but a recipe assumes a quarter gallon, you're going to end up with an unaccounted for fifteen percent that is enough to mess with the hopping rates and might make the batch too big for a one gallon vessel. You also need to be mindful that you keep control over your boil so you don't boil off more than expected and go the other direction. It's easier to top up and go back and boil off more but ideally you want to avoid both if you can. With small batches it's easier to have variances in your system from my small batch system, so you need to adjust recipes slightly to account for your brewing system. With software this is extremely easy to address.
 

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Please let me continue to clarify. I'm having fun with my one-gallon brews. It was an easy step for me coming from brewing fruit & rice wines and meads in one-gallon carboys and jars. I have all the gear right out of the gate. I'm not interested in taking five-gallon recipes and doing the maths. I'm off too a heckuva start with one-gallon beers. So any more five-gallon suggestions or book recommendations that don't give at least a passing nod to one-gallon brewing should be considered either off topic or general information (no matter how helpful and accurate) and not directed toward me. I'm in a one-gallon brewing thread and in a one-gallon state of mind, and I'm uniting with other one-gallon brewers.
 
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