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First brew in a few days and I have a couple questions

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Byronnn

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So I'm going to be brewing my first batch in a few days and I have a couple questions.

I got a 5 gal extract kit from my LHBS for a "Not too Pale" Cream Ale, here's the recipe:
2kg(4.4lb) Golden Light LME
1kg(2.2lb) Amber LME
1lb Golden Light DME
1oz Centennial @ 20 min
1oz Centennial @ 5 min
11.5g(1 packet) Safale US-05
and I'm adding a half pound of Carravienna to steep for some freshness
The recipe lists the IBU as 20-25 and OG as 1.046, but no FG.

There's a cupboard I'm going to use for fermenting that, for the last week, has had a minimum temperature of 60F(15.5C) and a maximum of 67F(19.5C). As a bachelor I have enough room in my fridge for a 5gal carboy for cold conditioning/'lagering'.

Here's the process I'm compiled from these forums, Palmers website, and the kits instructions:
-Heat 2 gallons water to 170F(77C) while steeping specialty grain for 20 minutes, remove
-bring the wort to a boil, turn heat off momentarily and add the malt extract
-disolve extract and bring to a boil. set timer for 20 minutes
-boil 1oz hops for 20 minutes
-boil 1tsp irish moss for 15 minutes
-boil 1oz hops for 5 minutes
-remove wort from heat and cool to 95F(35C) with an ice bath and pre-boiled ice cubes
-fill the fermenter with 2 gal pre boiled cold water, pour in wort leaving sludge
-add cool water to make it 5 gallons, gently rock back and forth for a few minutes
-fermenter should not be warm. add re-hydrated yeast
-put in a dark spot, around 64F(18C)
-5-14 days from brewing krauzen falls in and and foam subsides, gravity doesn't change for a few days
-warm it up for 2 days (diacetyl rest, 68F (19-21C)) to let the yeast clean up
-rack to secondary fermenter and keep around 64F(18C) for a week
-add gelatin and swirl, put in fridge to cold crash & cold condition/'lager' at 41F(5C) for 2 weeks
-clean and sanitize keg, purge air, siphon beer avoiding trub
-pressurize to 35PSI for a week or so

I'd appreciate some feedback on my proposed process and I have a couple questions:
-I like beer a bit more bitter than 20-25 IBU, Can I add 5 minutes to the first hop boiling time for a bit more bitterness? Or maybe do a half ounce at 10 minutes and a half ounce at 5 minutes? I don't want to go get more hops for this brew
-My recipe lists no final gravity, is it always around 1.01? Is FG reached at the end of primary fermentation? My primary has a loose lid so I don't want to leave it in there longer than necessary.
 

billl

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The general boil time is 60 minutes, so you should plan on that. The hop times are listed as times from the end of the boil, so you add the 20 minutes hops 40 minutes into the boil. If you want a slightly more bitter beer, you could move that to 30 min etc. Cream Ales aren't supposed to be bitter though, so I'd be careful with that.

Your fermentation schedule is to complicated for my taste, but to each their own. The critical part is that you leave the beer in the fermenter until it is done. If you want to do a secondary and extended lagering, more power to ya. If you are kegging anyway, you can leave the keg in the fridge a couple weeks and skip all the other stuff.

Your PSI for your keg is WAY high. Some people put it that high for a DAY to speed up the process, but certainly not a week. Depending on your serving temperature, you'll want your keg in the 8-12 lb range.
 

helibrewer

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This looks like a "Twenty minute boil" recipe. You only need to boil for the duration of your longest hop addition. You should not need a diacetyl rest with that beer.

If you want more IBU's extend the boiling time on the first hop addition to up to 60 minutes. Leave the second addition at 5 minutes remaining since that is a flavoring/aroma addition.

If you are going to boil for a full hour I would increase your boil volume to 3 gallons, you're going to have more evaporation loss and boiling 2 gallons with all that extract for a full hour is going to leave you with a sludge and a mess.

In a fridge you will only need about 25psi for a couple days, then you can reduce to 13-15 for about a week...then set to your desired serving pressure.
 
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Byronnn

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My largest pot will boil 2 gallons, and cream ale isnt supposed to be too bitter so I think Ill boil for 30 minutes and put the first hop addition in for the whole 30 minutes. The kit instructions say to boil for 20 minutes and since this is an extract +steeping recipe I dont know of any advantage to a 60 minute boil.

I know I proably dont need a diacetyl rest but I dont want to have any problems with secondary blowoff, so I was thinking it would be good to make sure the yeast is finished before racking.

Thabks for the replies guys! I think itll be a good brew!
 

Lushife

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If you have a large enough pot and a way to to cool it quick you might want to try do a full boil.
 
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