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KDM

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1. Not sure if all this is destined to be my new hobby, sure is a lot of work. I mean, sure is a lot of cleaning. Clean, clean, clean. Goddamit, I didn't stay a bachelor all my life because I like to clean stuff, y' know . . . although I must admit my kitchen has certainly benefitted from it, and that I do rather like. I may warm up to HB'ing a little more, just keep reading, but in any case there's no way I could ever have the first hint of regret; I've learned SO MUCH about beer I just can't get over it. Been drinking beer since I turned 6 months old, in 1960, and hardly knew anything about it. Now I understand malt and hops, lager and ale, all that schtuff -- it's amazing how new and different and nice the world is today! :fro:

2. As a taste treat, it's certainly nothing special far as I'm concerned. I expect it's because extract kits, even very freshly put-together ones, just never hold up next to partial mash or all-grain concoctions. The brews I've cranked out are good, mind you, just not worth all the work if you ask me. I may or may not put the mash theory to the test in the future, but at least I'm open to the idea. In the meantime, I can buy really, really good beer, and the slight additional cost is a lot like accepting the slightly higher price of buying chickens that are already dead, dressed out, and ready for the kitchen. In short, not a bad bargain.

3. The yeast dregs at the bottom of my bottled beers taste excellent. I love it . . . I swirl those rascals up into the last bit and pour 'em into the glass now, just like recommended with hefe's, after having tasted them several times straight from the bottle. What'd I do wrong (heheheh)? They're all like that.

Summary: Not that impressed, but then, I understand I need to tackle a mash before even thinking about reaching any judgements. In the meantime, I'm unlikely to mess with HB'ing during the summer months here on the Texas Gulf Coast, and any new developments will most likely be next Fall.
 

mosquitocontrol

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I agree taste isn't always comparable to what you can buy. But several of my all extract batches have been better. Its fun to do though. No carrying cases of beer from my car to my apt by myself twice a week. And the cost savings is great. I know most would say its not saving but if you control yourself from going crazy it is.

Eventually I'll move up to all-grain when i have more space. But I'm happy with extract right now. Haven't had a bad batch yet! After 20.
 

Nurmey

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You just haven't made that batch that gave your taste buds little orgasms. I think you need to make a dozen more batches before you decide if it's worth it. However, this is a hobby and should be fun. Are you having fun? Personally, I don't drink much but I love the process which keeps me deep in the obsession.
 

monty3777

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I'm not sure I follow you and your logic - though that doesn't mean much. First, extract kits produce very high quality beer. You may have more control over all-grain beers but I bet if you you wouldn't be able to pick an all-grain from an extract beer. Second, as far as cost I can brew a pretty potent quality Belgian style beer for around $30 (5 gallons) or I can buy a Belgian beer for $5 per bottle at the local liquor store. I'm no math scholar but the value is there in spades.

However, if you don't like brewing beer that's all there is to it.
 

ericm

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things like fermentation temperature control make a much bigger difference than extract vs all-grain, IMO
 
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KDM

KDM

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Good points all, so far. Do I enjoy the process or not, that's good question? May also be that I'm getting off-flavors or other artifacts of a job less than perfectly done. In any case, I'm not totally happy, so maybe a little discussion will clear up why not?
 

LaurieGator

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Just curious, why did you start to brew originally?

Are you a creative type who wants to make something new? Did you want to save some money on buying beer? Have you brewed other things?

Maybe finding out why you started will help you see what got you excited in the first place and what has happened (like reality) to curb that excitement...
 

Homercidal

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You can save money by buying in bulk, if you want to compare costs. Forgetting that your time is money (Bobby_M), if you enjoy the process, then why not brew? It does save money, especially if you go AG or buy in bulk, and extract beer CAN be as good as AG, if your techniques are right and you are careful.

That said, there is nothing wrong with going to AG if you want to learn more about brewing and you want more control over your beer. Either way, if you focus on understanding the process, and perfecting your technique, you CAN make beer every bit as good as store-bought. I've done it, and I've had plenty of micro-brew that was essentially homebrew that was easily the best beers I've tasted, and a few homebrews that were very good (I haven't got to taste many other homebrewed beers besides my own. I'm curious, though...)
 

monty3777

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Good points all, so far. Do I enjoy the process or not, that's good question? May also be that I'm getting off-flavors or other artifacts of a job less than perfectly done. In any case, I'm not totally happy, so maybe a little discussion will clear up why not?

My first thought/question - where are you buying your brewing kits? Which specific kits are you using (brand, type of beer)?
 
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