Wife Wants to Brew Me a Beer Recipe Help

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sudndeth

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So, I posted this in Yooper's 23 page long thread for Dead Guy Clone, but I figured I get a better response here. So, the deal is my wife and her friends want to brew me a beer to have when I get back, but she's never done it before. She's also going to use it as an opportunity to introduce some friends to home brewing who are interested in it. So, I decided that I would like a Dead Guy Clone and took advice from the Yoopers thread. SO, please let me know if the numbers, and everything looks good. Pretend you've never brewed and this is all you have to go on. THanks for any help.

Ingredients:

2lbs Maris Otter Pale Malt
1lbs Caramunich Malt
1lbs Munich Malt
8oz Crystal 40L
5lbs Extra Dry DME
2lbs Light Dry DME
1oz Pearle (60 min)
.25oz Pearle (30 min)
.25oz Saaz (5 min)
.25oz Pearle (5 min)
1 Whirlfloc Tab.. (Boil 15 min)
Wyest Nutrient (Boil 10min)
1 Wyeast PacMan Smack Pack (follow instruction on pack)

Preperation: Clean carboys with Onstep, then on brew day sanitize all equipment with Starsan. I fill part of the carboy up with Starsan and set on its side and roll it every few minutes until the entire inside has been sanitized. Fill up a large Rubbermaid with Starsan to soak spoons, measuring tools and anything else. Wipe all counters and keep hands clean.

1) Combine all grains into grain bag
2) Add 1.5 gallons of water to Largest Kettle and heat to 158* once at 158* add grain bag and let sit for 60 minutes. Monitor temp to make sure it stays at 158*
3) Heat .5 gallon of sparge water to 170*
4) After steeping for 60 minutes lift the grain bag into colander and hold over kettle use 170* sparge water to sparge grains by pouring it over the top of the grain bag rinsing all the grains thoroughly. Once complete dispose of grains.
5) Add 2 gallons of water to the kettle and stir in all the DME
6) Boil for 60 minutes keeping a rigorous boil without letting it boil over, add hop additions as identified in ingredients section.
7) Cool wort using sanitized wort chiller to 72* then add to carboy.
8) Add cold water to the carboy until you have 5 gallons of wort.
9) Take gravity reading
10) Pitch yeast that has been smacked already to carboy and aerate.
11) Put carboy in keezer set at 60* and add blow off tube (take sanitized large hose and put one end in carboy, and put the other end into pitcher of Starsan).
12) Let sit for 10days or until gravity reads the same for 3 readings.
13) Rack to secondary and let sit for 3-4 weeks
14) Wash and sanitize 60 bottles, caps and racking equipments.
15) Bring 1 cup of water to boil and mix in 4.7oz of table sugar.
16) Once completely dissolved mix thoroughly to carboy.
17) Attach hose and battle filler attachment to bottling bucket and fill bottles.
18) Let bottles sit at room temp. until time to drink.
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billtzk

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It sounds reasonable to me. It also sounds like an ambitious project for a first brew, especially with an audience (i.e., distractions). Hopefully your wife has at least watched you brew and has some idea already to help her interpret your instructions. For example, "Take gravity reading" assumes she knows how to do that. She should know that Star San is very slippery and a glass carboy can be dangerous to handle with slippery hands. Also, I'd suggest you tell her to smack the yeast pack the night before brew day.

I've never understood why people submerge the end of a blow off tube in a pitcher of sanitizer. A pitcher of water works fine. It's just a big airlock.
 
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sudndeth

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Yeah, she's helped me brew a beer and has done a mead by herself. I think she can handle it, we'll see though. hahaha. I will let her know about carboy safety, that is a good point.

Do the boil times, and temps look good? Also, what style do you carb this as?
 

Barc

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5) Remove pot from heat and add 2 gallons of water to the kettle and stir in all the DME

6) Boil for 60 minutes keeping a rigorous boil without letting it boil over, add hop additions as identified in ingredients section. Note 1) Hop additions are added from 60 minutes counting DOWN to 0 minutes (i.e. the 60 minute addition is the first addition, the 30 minute addition is the second, etc.).; Note 2) Place the wort chiller in the pot about 10 minutes before the end of the boil to sanitize. (if you've got room in your pot for the chiller, that is)

12) Let sit for 4 weeks (so you don't have to worry with a secondary thus making things a little easier)

18) Let bottles sit in the dark at room temp. for at least 3 weeks before sampling. (You don't really expect folks to actually WAIT to try one, right?!
 
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sudndeth

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Good call on explaining the hop additions. I couldn't respect them if they didn't sample some of the goods.
 

billtzk

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Yes, your boil times and temps look good.

At the end of your 60 minutes of steeping at 158 in steps 2, 3, 4, I would just turn on the fire, bring the temp up to 168 to 170 degrees (stirring occasionally to make sure you get an accurate temp reading), then lift the grain bag and sparge with the half gallon of 170 degree water in your colander, drain well, then add the rest of your water and extract and start the boil. I'm sure your steps will work as written, but I've always done it as I just described, and it works well for me.
 

Marsdude

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The only advice I have is...

You better hang on to that girl. If she and her friends are doing this for you she sounds like a gem!
 
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sudndeth

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That's good advice, I wasn't planning on getting rid of her anytime soon. lol.

So, bring the temp of the grains up before sparge? Is that just a personal preference, or does it help with something? Thanks for the replies
 
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sudndeth

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Well, the beer is made and she said she had a hard time keeping the mash temp. She said it stayed more at 160-62. The final gravity was a bit higher then estimated at 1.085. What should we do to dry this out a little if anything?
 

electric_beer

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You could add a little sugar. I've found that if I add just a little bit of sugar it re-energizes the yeast to consume more of the dextrines. The other option is to finish it off with a champagne yeast, but I'd stay away from that option as it can taste a bit funky in my opinion.
 
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Only advice I have is make sure she understands that when you say "I fill part of the carboy up with Starsan" that she knows that's a diluted starsan solution. Don't want to come home to a $300 starsan bill :D
 
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sudndeth

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should I wait to see what it finishes at and then add some sugar? It was just brewed yesterday and it's fermenting at about 60 right now.
 

electric_beer

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I'd wait. Let it do its thing and then address it later after a few hydro readings. Not to mention if you feed it simple sugars early it could end up like couch potatoes. LAZY.
 
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sudndeth

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Well, the beer finished at 1.022. Not bad! we're going to cold crash it at 40* for a week and then bottle. The plan is to have it for a homecoming party 8 Jan. Is 6 weeks long enough to bottle condition this? Should I leave the brew at 40* for 2 weeks to help condition the beer? I was thinking 2.7 for the carb. What do you think?
 
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sudndeth

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Well, we had some suck back from the blow off tube pitcher. It sucked all the star san into the beer. The wife said she could see it settled when she bottled and didn't bottle the lighter colored liquid.

What do you guys think? Should this still be OK? Lesson learned. I didn't even think of the temp change doing that. We had to keep the blow off because my ferm chamber (keezer) isn't tall enough for a air lock.
 
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