Extract kits

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Paschendale

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I am already shopping for my very first kit for beer. I am stuck between American Ale and Galaxy Extra Pale. Any tips for me on either of these or other suggestions on what sort would be a good starting point for a raw newbie?
 

captianoats

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Both are a good choice, they're both fairly straightforward kits. I say the pale ale, but only because I like that style better. Choose the one YOU would rather drink.
 

tyzippers

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That's good advice. Choose based on what you prefer to drink! There's nothing extraordinary about either if those brews, so it's your call! Here's a thought- get both!
 
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Paschendale

Paschendale

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Thanks, ya'll, for the advice. I doubt I'll be turning out anything novel or exceptional for awhile, if ever, but it's nice to know where to start. Do you have anything approximating a mashing stage with extract kits or do they go directly to the boil when you start them? I am wondering if you can add additional flavorings to them, once you do them once or twice to get a baseline.
 

drainbamage

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Paschendale said:
Thanks, ya'll, for the advice. I doubt I'll be turning out anything novel or exceptional for awhile, if ever, but it's nice to know where to start. Do you have anything approximating a mashing stage with extract kits or do they go directly to the boil when you start them? I am wondering if you can add additional flavorings to them, once you do them once or twice to get a baseline.
There's nothing wrong with using kits in the beginning...they aren't always exciting but we all have to start somewhere and it gives you a chance to establish a routine for your brewing procedures. You may have some grains (usually crystal malt) to steep for a 1/2 hour or so before you heat to a boil, but otherwise everything goes right into the boil. If you want to give it a personal touch, you could always buy some extra hops for dry-hopping, or add fruit or spices depending on the style.
 

hehawbrew

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tyzippers said:
That's good advice. Choose based on what you prefer to drink! There's nothing extraordinary about either if those brews, so it's your call! Here's a thought- get both!
Good advice!!!!

Just start with AG. My friends started with extract and made me do AG from the start. It's an extra hour of your life each brew day and you can make dog biscuits with the spent grain!
 

Ridire

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hehawbrew said:
Good advice!!!!

Just start with AG. My friends started with extract and made me do AG from the start. It's an extra hour of your life each brew day and you can make dog biscuits with the spent grain!
If I were starting over, I'd go all grain from batch #1.
 
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Paschendale

Paschendale

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If I were starting over, I'd go all grain from batch #1.
Think I'm gonna have to work up to ag, since I'm on a budget on the equipment. But I have access to lots of pecans and would like to figure a way to work them in since I love the flavor. We have trees on our property that produce nuts of wonderful flavor,if we can beat the squirrels and deer to them, lol
 

pkrath84

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Like above I believe you should choose what you tend to prefer to drink. Being familiar will help you see where you need to make changes.
 

hehawbrew

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Make a chestnut brown ale, but replace with pecans!

Isnt AG cheaper? Ive seen the price of extract and cringed!
 

RM-MN

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Think I'm gonna have to work up to ag, since I'm on a budget on the equipment. But I have access to lots of pecans and would like to figure a way to work them in since I love the flavor. We have trees on our property that produce nuts of wonderful flavor,if we can beat the squirrels and deer to them, lol
You must have a brew pot since you think you can brew an extract kit. If it is at least 5 gallons (arbitrary number) you can brew a 2 1/2 gallon all grain batch with only a paint strainer bag as an additional cost, less than $5 for a pair at the big box lumber store. Look for the term BIAB here on HomeBrewTalk. I love doing this size batches since I can then sample lots of different recipes and if I make one I absolutely hate (hasn't happened yet!) I only have one case of bottles to down. I've worked my brew day down to about 3 1/2 hours, about the same as an extract kit would take and I can make a batch pretty cheap thanks to bulk pale malt.
 

hehawbrew

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Same here. I mostly do three gallon batches since I have 2, three gallon carboys. Five gallons is good bc you can share more tho!
Anyway- my next investment will be a wort chiller. Cooling is the longest part.

Anyway. Here is a recipe you may like for pecans, just multiply it however you want.

Also- I started with one gallon AG batches. Easy to do and a great introduction!

image-466449947.jpg
 

Ridire

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You must have a brew pot since you think you can brew an extract kit. If it is at least 5 gallons (arbitrary number) you can brew a 2 1/2 gallon all grain batch with only a paint strainer bag as an additional cost, less than $5 for a pair at the big box lumber store. Look for the term BIAB here on HomeBrewTalk. I love doing this size batches since I can then sample lots of different recipes and if I make one I absolutely hate (hasn't happened yet!) I only have one case of bottles to down. I've worked my brew day down to about 3 1/2 hours, about the same as an extract kit would take and I can make a batch pretty cheap thanks to bulk pale malt.
I do 5 gallon all grain BIAG batches in a 7.5 gallon aluminum turkey fryer pot. I probably have $150 total in my brewing/fermenting equipment at this time (already had the turkey fryer, though).
 
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Paschendale

Paschendale

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Huh! I was under the impression you needed additional vessels for all grain, but I'll admit I'd not heard of the BIAB method, either. I will definitely have to look into that, then. Very soon I'll have an 8 gallon kettle to work with (should arrive some time this week) and I can certainly pick up a bag. Thanks for the hint about the paint strainer bag, RM-MN, and thanks for the recipe, hehawbrew.
 

hehawbrew

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[ame]http://youtu.be/CH5eN6pVK1A[/ame]

It's easy! This little video inspired me to brew! Large batch are different, but, this gives a general idea.
 

Ridire

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I'm putting together equipment to do AG with a 3 vessel system for bigger beers but I think BIAB is easy and takes a lot less time than I expected. Really, not much more, if any, more time than extract. This is assuming you have a burner to boil 5-6 gallons quickly.

I know experienced brewers can make great extracts but I think AG is more forgiving to my mistakes. My AG is much better than my extract attempts. Other variables surely exist, I'll admit.
 
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Paschendale

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I have a burner, if doing the boil outside is not a problem. Having an outdoor burner is too useful an item to ignore.
 

Rbeckett

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You can do all kinds of amazing things just by manipulating the LME and DME in the kits as well as add any number of flavors and additions like raisins, or fruit. I started with very similar kits and still do a brew with them from time to time. I am very partial the the Midwest Hanks Hefe and I do brew it fairly often. I do all grain too. I have a bargain basement system I built on the how cheap can I do this premise, and it works amazingly well for a cobbled together system. Of course I had to add some stuff to accommodate me being stuck in a wheelchair, but it is still a straight forward set up and does an outstanding job feeding my hobby. So don't be shy, give whatever you might be interested in a try. All you can do is end up with some extra beer to give to your friends if you don't like a particular adjustment, How bad can that be? And your buds will appreciate it too...

Wheelchair Bob
 

Ridire

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I have a burner, if doing the boil outside is not a problem. Having an outdoor burner is too useful an item to ignore.
I do the boil in my garage on the turkey fryer propane burner. When the weather turns here (if ever) I will likely do it out in the open on my back patio while grilling.
 
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Paschendale

Paschendale

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Well that would definitely make things a bit easier as far as the cleanup goes, to do it outside. Also won't get the house so hot with summer cranking up. I like it.

Now, for a stupid, Brewing 101-type question: what do LME and DME mean? I have seen them both listed in posts here, but not an explanation of what they stand for. :eek::eek::eek:
 

Ridire

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Well that would definitely make things a bit easier as far as the cleanup goes, to do it outside. Also won't get the house so hot with summer cranking up. I like it.

Now, for a stupid, Brewing 101-type question: what do LME and DME mean? I have seen them both listed in posts here, but not an explanation of what they stand for. :eek::eek::eek:
Just extract. DME = dry malt extract and LME = liquid malt extract.
 
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