15
votes
6answers
9k views

What's the difference between primary & secondary fermentation?

Over here PJ asked "How do you differentiate primary to secondary if you keep it in the same bucket?"
9
votes
1answer
937 views

What's a good breakdown of all the sugars in regards to brewing?

I'm a little confused when it comes to sugars. It seems like there are a lot of different kinds and they come in many different forms. What affects to different sugars have on brewing? Do they ...
6
votes
3answers
763 views

Cold Crash and Finings

This year my goal is to improve the clarity of my bottle conditioned beer. I intend to do this by: At the end of the fermentation, adding finings (Isinglass) to the brew barrel, followed by; ...
3
votes
1answer
2k views

What are the benefits of fermenting under pressure?

I hear that some brewers ferment under pressure. What is the rationale/benefits of doing this?
19
votes
7answers
7k views

Can I condition in growlers?

I read up a decent amount on conditioning in growlers before attempting it. I wanted to share my experience and see if others had had similar experiences. The thinking, of course, is to minimize ...
11
votes
4answers
1k views

How many degrees will my carboy heat up as a result of fermentation activity?

Recipe calls for fermentation at 70 degrees, basement is 65. I know that fermentation produces some heat, so I was wondering if just letting yeast do its thing will be enough. Otherwise, do I need ...
9
votes
2answers
557 views

Why do extract recipes call for a late addition of the bulk of the extract?

My recipe calls for a pound of DME at the beginning of the boil and 6 pounds at 15 minutes to go. What's the point of that?
9
votes
8answers
18k views

How would I make Alcoholic Rootbeer?

I picked up some rootbeer extract at my local brewshop, and I've made a few batches in old soda bottles... but is it possible brew it with an alcohol content similar to that of beer?
8
votes
2answers
5k views

What is fusel alcohol, and does it cause hangovers?

I'd recently heard of fusel alcohol in a reference that it causes headaches/hangovers. First what is fusel alcohol, and what creates it (can I avoid it)? Secondly, is fusel alcohol really the main ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

When to harvest wild hops?

Hi there fellow brewmasters! I have recently moved to all-grain brewing after two years of brewing with hopped extracts. The results are pretty good, and the whole process is a lot of fun, but I am ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

How long does StarSan last?

I keep StarSan in a spray bottle for easier sanitizing during brew day. How long does the StarSan last in that bottle? Is it good forever?
7
votes
4answers
8k views

Why is our beer not carbonating?

We've made a few batches of beer and our recent batches have not ended up as carbonated as previous. I think the beer has been stored in a cooler place but I'm wondering if that is the only reason. ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

should hoppy beers be aged?

Do hoppy beers not need to be aged? About how long does it take a hoppy beer to get to its maturation point? Thanks, Chris
6
votes
1answer
881 views

Cherry vinegar (was supposed to be mead)

Last week I started a cherry mead and discovered yesterday that it had turned to vinegar (and not even nice-tasting cherry-flavoured vinegar - it smelled and tasted awful, though the colour was ...
5
votes
2answers
856 views

Will Jalapeno or Habanero peppers adversely effect yeast

I have a recipe in front of me for a Saison of the spicy variety. It calls for the addition of one Jalapeno pepper, seeds included. First off, I do enjoy a fair amount of spice (far more than anyone ...
5
votes
5answers
9k views

How can I put minerals back into distilled or reverse osmosis water?

The tap water where I live is filled with chlorine, flouride, some pretty bad elements such as arsenic, chromium, barium, etc. So I would like to purify my water with either reverse osmosis or ...
5
votes
5answers
6k views

Can I use wine yeast to ferment beer?

Can I use wine yeast to ferment a beer? What sort of problems might I encounter that are unique to wine yeast trying to ferment malt sugars? What sort of flavor differences might I encounter?
4
votes
3answers
5k views

How to calculate the minimum vessel sizes for all grain brewing

Background: Brewing in an kitchenette with limited storage space All Grain brewing, extracts are not available around here I'm looking at BIAB also, but want to have the traditional 3 vessels setup ...
14
votes
3answers
7k views

How long will bottled beer last?

How long will bottled beer last without refrigeration?
12
votes
5answers
13k views

Why do all my beers taste better after having aged for a couple months?

My impression is that ales are typically best drunk within a couple weeks of brew day. It's my experience that letting them age in the bottles for 2-3 months yields the best beer, both improving body, ...
11
votes
3answers
3k views

Do I need to sterilize my top-off water?

I just purchased my first kit and am about to brew it (tonight!). The instructions provided indicate that after cooling the wort and tranfering it to the sanitized carboy I need to top it off with ...
11
votes
4answers
3k views

How can I learn the distinctive taste of various hops?

There are some very helpful descriptions I've found of people describing the taste of various hops, but I've found that my personal taste can be quite different. I'd like to be able to isolate the ...
11
votes
12answers
8k views

How to brew all-grain indoors

I've been brewing with extracts and specialty grains for two years now, and I want to step up to all-grain brewing. From what I understand, it's important to get a full boil when brewing all-grain and ...
9
votes
5answers
2k views

No bubbles in the airlock - should I still bottle the brew?

I'm attempting my first brew using a kit with all the provided ingredients (it's a lager). My brew is still in the big tub and has been there for about 2 weeks now. Initial SG was 1.040 and it's now ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

How many times can yeast be reused?

A good yeast sample can be retrieved, stored & reused regularly across brews. Is there a limit to the number of generations a sample can last? I've heard that after so many generations a strain ...
8
votes
1answer
6k views

What is a proper blow-off tube setup?

36 hours ago I brewed a BIG red ale and pitched some kick-ass WLP001. The picture on the left is what I had late last night (24 hr in). Made me a little nervous. And this morning the krausen had ...
8
votes
8answers
2k views

Are some types of beers easier to brew than others?

I'm just getting started with home brewing. Are some types of beer easier to brew than others? Would you suggest starting with a certain type for my very first brew?
7
votes
2answers
2k views

Is the iodine test for starch conversion pointless?

Looking around the web there seems to be a lot of mention of the use of the iodine (starch) test at the end of your mash. Is it actually useful (i.e. is it reliable)? There have been times when I ...
7
votes
9answers
2k views

Gosebier- a unique style

Dose anyone have any experience brewing Gosebier? Its a german wheat style of beer that is flavored with some salt (and citrus I believe). I had one at the Golden City Brewery in Denver a couple ...
7
votes
4answers
4k views

Using Plastic Water Jugs as Fermenters

I asked this on Twitter a while back, but I thought I might get some other thoughts on it. I have one of those 5g Poland Spring water jugs. If I get a bung that fits it, is there any reason I couldn't ...
7
votes
7answers
3k views

How should bulk grain be stored?

I love brewing all-grain but I feel that I could cut down on my costs significantly by purchasing some of my grain in bulk, storing it, and using it as needed. I know a lot of people do this but I'm ...
6
votes
4answers
998 views

Yeast , dead or alive?

G'day , how long after the fermentation has finished does the yeast live ? I am curious because not only is it the cost of the yeast but if you find a particular strain and you like the taste ( ...
6
votes
6answers
6k views

Should dry hopping be done in secondary, when to transfer, and for how long?

After surveying questions related to dry hopping and secondary here on the Exchange, I don't yet have solid answers to the following questions. Should beer be transferred to secondary for the ...
6
votes
2answers
755 views

Does Irish Moss expire?

I've only bought one bag of Irish Moss in at least 2 years. It's so cheap but is there really any need to replace it?
6
votes
2answers
4k views

No carbonation in the bottles?

Had to recap my bottles to fill the level up so I didn't have any explode on me. Now they have been sitting for 2 1/2 weeks. Opened one up and there is no carbonation.. is there a way to recarbonate ...
6
votes
4answers
2k views

Should the grain or strike water be added to the mash tun first?

I've always added my grain to my MLT cooler first, then dumped the strike water on top (I don't have a sparge arm). I calculate my strike temps based on the grain temp and initial cooler temp, so I ...
6
votes
5answers
7k views

Adding potassium metabisulphite (i.e. sulfites) to prevent oxidation?

Winemakers often add potassium metabisulphite to the finished product for two purposes: To prevent further yeast growth (so that they do not eat the remaining sugars) and as a preservative, to prevent ...
5
votes
6answers
1k views

Wort aeration on a budget

To aerate my wort I have been using a whisk, but i am worried about contamination. What are other more effective ways to aerate wort without spending too much money?
5
votes
2answers
2k views

Why would OG be significantly higher than predicted?

I know there are several questions on the forum about OG being lower than predicted. Please bear with me though. I'm at a loss. I just brewed a straightforward extract wheat beer recipe. The ...
4
votes
4answers
1k views

How Should I Place a Digital Thermometer into My Fermentation Chamber and Keep it Airtight?

I have a setup with a raspberry pi and two DS18B20 digital thermometers that measure the temperature of the ambient air and the water in a swamp cooler that I place my fermentation chamber in. I was ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

in depth cleaning glass bottles

I realise there is a tonne of information about cleaning on the net already, but I am just about to bottle my first batch of glass bottles and wanted to put my process out there to make sure I haven't ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Brewed an Oatmeal Stout and the gravity did not drop as much as predicted, should I re-pitch or add yeast nutrients/energizer?

I just brewed an oatmeal stout see recipe details here and I have a question about missing Orignal and/or Final gravities. The OG was supposed to be 1.061 and the FG 1.016. I brewed and got an OG or ...
3
votes
2answers
219 views

Does skunk off flavour go away?

Skunky off-flavours are caused by ultraviolet light causing chemical reaction that transforms alpha-acids. Once this flavour is created, does it go away with time, and if so how much time? Or will it ...
3
votes
1answer
278 views

recapping my bottles? Will it ruin the outcome of my beer?

I bottled my first batch of homebrew and didnt fill the bottles all the way. So the next day I opened the bottles and poured some more beer into them and recapped them.. I this going to mess up the ...
2
votes
2answers
253 views

So I want to make a summer shandy, can I just put fruit in the second fermentation stage instead of juice?

So I was told I can add lemonade or orange juice to my wheat beer to make a summer shandy, can I just put fruit in the second fermentation stage instead?
2
votes
1answer
163 views

What are finings? How do finings work?

What are fining agents? How do fining agents work?
2
votes
3answers
745 views

Hydrometer reading interference

When brewing an IPA about a week ago, my starting gravity reading came out to be 1.12 - significantly higher than the listed target of 1.07 on the recipe. I had suspicions of error at the time which I ...
1
vote
1answer
479 views

Day 2 of Primary Fermentation of beer

Is this what my primary fermentation should look like after a day??? It looks like my yeast has been sitting on top of foam..
0
votes
1answer
2k views

Storing full kegs at room temperature

So I have a related question here, but my questions are the following: I only have one (and only have room for one) dedicated chest freezer/fridge for brewing. I have one beer (Marzen) kegged and ...
32
votes
16answers
3k views

Improving Your Brewing Significantly

I made this wiki to allow folks to post what upgrades in process or equipement really take one's beer brewing to the next level. The bottle-necks to better and better brewing if you will. (This was ...

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