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byunique

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This most recent brew #4, I stepped up the process a bit. Went from Fermonster's and bottling bucket to Fermzilla All Rounder, (pressure fermenting), and kegs (closed transfers), inkbirds for heat control, ispindel for gravity readings, and a kegerator for fermentation, and cold crashing needs.

I think I learned the most from brew #3, and that IPAs are very susceptible to oxidation, and stuck fermentations wore down my patience for a beer that needed double dry hopping. I think that batch took a total of 6 weeks. Now I know why the Fruit Bazooka NE IPA kit is labeled as "Advanced"... lol. Living in San Francisco, temperature control was never a big deal for the high 60ish temperature goal but having a heat mat and inkbird to warm things up a bit helped in the middle of the night.

From that last brew, I learned about what yeast starters can do to unstick fermentations, and learned firsthand the result of using a bottling bucket and transferring an IPA via a bottling bucket with no clue about oxygen exposure. My beer tasted good and smelled great at first, then started rapidly changing color.
With my love of IPAs I had to do something about that, and learning about pressure fermenting and the ability to do closed transfers via kegging via youtube videos, it all made sense. I heard about the tilt but it was a bit too expensive for my taste, and was pleasantly surprised to find a ispindel here in the classifieds which was far more $ tolerable. I was bottling at the time, and just hearing about how kegging would carbonate and save time, I knew I would eventually get there, but when to pull the trigger was always the question.
I think one of the luckiest moves I made was learning that you can use a kegerator for fermentation, cold crashing and chilling your keg. With that in mind, I was lucky enough to find a second hand dual tap kegerator with co2 tank off of craigslist for $150. I had just read you can ferment in it as well as cold crash, and then serve your beer.

So with all these learnings, I went off into brew #4 armed with a whole lot of "what not to do's". The all grain BIAB went very well with very little surprises along the way. Fermentation was crazy fast with pressure fermentation at 80F and yeast starters, playing with the spunding valve was just cool, dry hopping with magnets inside the fermzilla was uneventful, ispindel results via Brewers Friend and Ubidots definitely put me in a whole another level of confidence when fermentation was done, and closed transfers with the keg was just easy.

After I went through the carbonation process, I poured myself that one tester glass, and have to say it was the best glass I have made! So, it was definitely worth all the effort no doubt.
The big surprise is when I went to the basement this AM and all I smelt was beer.

Come to find out the picnic tap that I had put on last night, leaked all my beer, and 1/2 of my c02 was all gone. Geez, who would have thought. !!! Sigh, one more learning added to the books. Oh well, onward!!!
 

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CascadesBrewer

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Come to find out the picnic tap that I had put on last night, leaked all my beer, and 1/2 of my c02 was all gone. Geez, who would have thought. !!! Sigh, one more learning added to the books. Oh well, onward!!!
Awww...what a sad ending to this chapter. Good luck with the next one!

BTW, I am not convinced that Kveik yeasts are the ultimate yeast to be used for all styles, but I really like the hoppy IPAs and Pale Ales I have made with Voss. Since you might have limited fermentation temperature control space, Kveik work great if you can just stick them in a warm area or use a cheap heat mat to keep them warm. When my fermentation chamber is occupied, I often will fit in a batch using a yeast like Kveik, Saison or Belgian that like to ferment warm
 
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byunique

byunique

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Awww...what a sad ending to this chapter. Good luck with the next one!

BTW, I am not convinced that Kveik yeasts are the ultimate yeast to be used for all styles, but I really like the hoppy IPAs and Pale Ales I have made with Voss. Since you might have limited fermentation temperature control space, Kveik work great if you can just stick them in a warm area or use a cheap heat mat to keep them warm. When my fermentation chamber is occupied, I often will fit in a batch using a yeast like Kveik, Saison or Belgian that like to ferment warm
Yeah, I'll be brewing a Hefeweizen next since I have 1/2 of a unused kit. Any IPA kits of recipes you can recommend, especially with Kveik yeasts :) or Saison for that matter ?
 

Mac_rancher

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Sounds like a similar path I’ve been on in brewing. Adding more controls seems to make a world of difference. Even though you lost the beer, I’d say it’s a win. Implementing new strategies and equipment with your best tasting beer is a great step forward. Next brew will probably be pretty exciting knowing the end product will likely taste great.
 
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