7
votes
10answers
8k views

Is there an online equivalent of Beer Smith?

Simple question, does anyone know if there is a purely web based equivalent of Beer Smith / Brew Target, etc? Just looking for a decent product that I don't have to install on my desktop.
3
votes
5answers
7k views

Sanitizing with bleach without rinsing

What concentration of bleach (or Sodium hypochlorite) diluted in water is necessary to sanitize bottles? How much time is necessary to keep the bottles immersed in the solution, or is sufficient to ...
1
vote
1answer
3k views

BrewJacket - How does this Work and How can I replicate it?

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/433436998/brewjacket-immersion-lager-beer-without-a-refriger I've spent the last year determining how I can combat the hot temperatures to brew beer. I resort to ...
24
votes
9answers
59k views

What are the benefits of using brewing sugar over types of sugar?

In many kits I've used, the instructions recommend using brewing sugar. Of course it's okay to use other sources of sugar, but I was wondering whether there are any benefits of using brewing sugar ...
20
votes
6answers
13k views

Is there anyway to tell if a glass bottle of beer is carbonated without opening it?

It would be great if I didn't have to ruin a bottle of beer by opening it to test to see if it carbonated. Is there any way to tell?
14
votes
3answers
1k views

Why do you aerate wort at first and try to keep oxygen out later?

Why should you aerate the wort before pitching yeast but then try to avoid allowing oxygen into it later in the process? What is going on with the yeast that makes oxygen good at first but bad later?
14
votes
4answers
997 views

How do you cool wort?

More specifically, what methods exist to cool your wort after the boil, and what are there respective pros/cons?
12
votes
6answers
4k views

Using coffee in beer

Last weekend I brewed a super classic, nothing special stout. I plan to add coffee to it in the secondary, and didn't want any craziness from the stout itself so that I could really play with the ...
11
votes
6answers
20k views

Bottles didn't carbonate, anything I can do?

Brewed an Oatmeal Stout and it has been in bottles for about 4 weeks now and still the bottles haven't carbonated. Tried the first bottle after 2 weeks and it was very flat. Now I just opened one ...
11
votes
3answers
733 views

Brewing with Aluminum Pots

There seems to be controversy whether or not aluminum pots are acceptable for home brewing. What are the pros and cons of brewing with aluminum?
11
votes
4answers
3k views

What is the best way to store hops?

I recently got a really good deal on some bulk pellet hops (several pounds). What is the best way to store them? I've heard that they should be vacuum sealed and put in the freezer. Will they be OK ...
11
votes
1answer
885 views

Making a Yeast Starter

It seems that there are varying opinions about the size your starter should be. What is the basic rule-of-thumb for 5 and 10 gallon batches? How much water should be used? How much malt/malt ...
10
votes
6answers
4k views

Can I use a dishwasher that has rinse agent to sanitize my bottles?

My dishwasher has a built in rinse agent dispenser that it claims must be filled for every use, besides I have no clue how to empty it once it is filled. Can I still run my bottles in the dishwasher ...
10
votes
6answers
13k views

Why is a carboy used for secondary fermentation?

It seems like you could a second bucket for the secondary fermentation. Is there any drawback to not using a carboy for this purpose?
10
votes
2answers
1k views

Does keeping a beer cold significantly preserve fresh hop aroma?

I'm double dry hopping my Rye India Pale Ale, doing half with simply double the dry hops, and half one addition, remove, adding the other half to see if anyone within drinking distance can distinguish ...
9
votes
2answers
4k views

Will it harm my wine to shake the container?

This is probably a really dumb question, but is it bad to shake or swirl the container my wine is in to encourage the release of CO2? I accidentally found out that jarring the container results in ...
9
votes
1answer
1k views

How long does 5lb of C02 last you?

I can never get a grip on how often I'll need to refill my C02. Sometimes it seems to last forever other times it seems very quick. In general, if you are just using C02 to pour, how many soda kegs ...
9
votes
2answers
9k views

Proper Way to Store Yeast

What is the proper way and temperature to store yeast?
8
votes
2answers
2k views

Dry hopping without secondary fermentation

I have so far only done bottom-fermented beers without transferring into a second vessel for secondary fermentation. If I wanted to do some dry hopping with this technique, when is the best time to ...
8
votes
6answers
10k views

Sweet sparkling cider without pasteurizing, sulphites or lactose

We've got an apple tree that produces more fruit than we know what to do with, so being cider lovers, we decided to get into brewing. Our first batch of cider was very dry so we've been adding sugar ...
8
votes
4answers
1k views

cleaning copper

Copper is great for all sorts of things, manifolds for your cooler based mashing tun, as well as that wort chiller you can't live without. However, copper gets really dirty, really quickly, and I don'...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

What are some ways to make low-carb beer?

I and a few friends have dabbled with the various "low carb" diets. But I've found that after a while, you don't want to break the diet, but just want a beer. What are some ways to make a beer ...
8
votes
2answers
820 views

What indicates my burner is at the peak performance?

I use 18" banjo burners on propane. When I'm trying to ramp to boil I have the choice between a shorter all blue flame (which I believe is the most efficient), A wild all yellow flame that edges ...
8
votes
7answers
15k views

Adding Pectin Enzyme To Cider After Fermentation Is Complete?

I've got a cider made from fresh pressed cider that's been in the fermenter about a month. It was augmented with some Crystal 60L and a few other ingredients and is sitting on French oak cubes. While ...
8
votes
4answers
4k views

Airlock: vodka, water, or

I've just started making my first brew, and am using vodka in the airlock, but am hoping for some more detailed info about what is best practice, or if there is not really any difference between using ...
7
votes
2answers
6k views

What effect do different types of yeast have when creating a recipe?

What happens when you use different types of yeast? Does it change the flavor? I'm not talking about mixing different types of yeast in the same recipe.
7
votes
8answers
9k views

Cardboard alternatives to bottle cases for storage

A problem I hadn't really anticipated was how to store/transport bottled homebrew. I've been reusing old cardboard store-bought boxes, but they seem to be breaking down pretty quickly, especially ...
7
votes
4answers
157 views

Watermelon beer, anyone tried brewing?

I am new to brewing and was thinking of trying to brew a fruit beer. I saw that there were watermelons for sale cheap at my local green grocers and wondered: At what stage I should add this to my ...
7
votes
5answers
9k views

Brew In A Bag one-gallon batch?

I'd like to try homebrewing, and I've read a great deal about the process, but I will have more time than money (I'm about to graduate from college). It seems like most people buy a lot of equipment ...
7
votes
8answers
12k views

What's a good small-batch fermentation vessel?

After getting started with a few kits, I'd like to start experimenting a little bit. I'd like to start off with 1-gallon batches on anything I'm not sure about, though. I have a growler that I'm ...
7
votes
3answers
10k views

Alternative/homemade yeast nutrient?

I forgot to add nutrient to my must when I put it in my carboy the other day (first time brewing mead). I fear I won't be able to get to my homebrew store before it's too late, so I'm wondering if I ...
7
votes
2answers
2k 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
3answers
918 views

Pennies in the Boil

I've heard that adding cleaned pennies to the wort can help prevent boil-overs. I guess they could provide nucleation points- I dunno. Any truth to this, or is it just an old wives' tail?
7
votes
4answers
2k views

Can a contaminted brew be identified by sight?

I brew ten-gallon batches of beer split into two fermentors. The last batch that I kegged had one infected fermentor, while one remained uninfected. One bucket showed a white powdery substance ...
7
votes
2answers
435 views

Extract late with a full boil?

If you can do a full wort boil with extracts is it still beneficial to be adding extract late to avoid color changes and the like? What would happen to hop utilization with extract late in a full boil?...
6
votes
4answers
4k views

Adding Bourbon flavor to a beer

So in my last beer, I added bourbon infused with vanilla bean. I started to wonder if this was "cheating" or frowned upon, as far as getting the bourbon flavor into the beer. Is there a better way to ...
6
votes
5answers
3k views

Target boil off percentage?

I have heard a lot of home brewers talk about the vigorousness of the boil being quite important. Given that describing the vigor in words like "rolling" is ambiguous I was wondering if it makes more ...
6
votes
4answers
3k views

Batch carbonation vs bottle carbonation

I was reading online some suggestions to carbonate the batch of beer before bottling, and would like to get some details on quantities and method. I do love my home brewed beer, but I don't like the ...
6
votes
5answers
1k views

How long should a carbonated bottle be refrigerated prior to drinking?

After I bottle my beers, I leave them on a shelving system to carbonate. Instead of throwing them all into the fridge, I just leave them on the shelves and move them individually into the fridge the ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Increasing IBUs post fermentation

I have recently brewed at APA and the IBUs have come out a little on the low side. I would like to increase the IBUS slightly. I was thinking of making a hop tea and adding it straight to the keg. Has ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Kegging home brew

I have a Cornelius system and I'm wanting to keg my home brew. I'm curious if you need to prime the beer to help with carbonation or if you just add wort to keg and carbonate from co2? If you do ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

Racking question

This might seem like a really dumb question but what exactly is meant by the term "racking" and how did it come about? When someone says, "I just racked my beer", what does that mean? Can it have ...
6
votes
1answer
526 views

Why doesn't FG reach 1.000?

My second beer brew has pretty much finished its primary fermentation. It started at 1.044 and is currently at 1.014... I don't expect it will go much further. Having brewed numerous wines I ...
5
votes
2answers
919 views

How much bourbon is the right amount?

When adding something like bourbon (or other whiskeys) to the secondary, how much do you add? I realize this will differ based on recipes, tastes, and styles, but what is a good range? How much is so ...
5
votes
3answers
2k views

How do you filter at home?

I thought I'd ask this after reading Brewchez's effects of filtering question. I personally don't filter at home, for the most part. I generally make dark beer, and people who drink my beer ...
5
votes
4answers
6k views

What are the consequences of a “weak” boil?

I am new to homebrewing and am getting help from an experienced brewer. So far I think everything has gone OK. I am doing all-grain brewing on a stovetop. I have done 2 brews. I am doing the mash and ...
5
votes
1answer
4k views

How to use Tart Cherries

Lately I've been trying fantastic beers brewed with tart cherries. Where is the best place to source this product? Do I buy as whole fruit, frozen fruit, puree? When and how should I add this product, ...
5
votes
3answers
15k views

Can a refractometer be used for testing final gravity?

Can you use a refractometer to test final gravity?
4
votes
2answers
3k views

What Calcium ppm is required in the mash for alpha-amylase stability and mash efficiency?

I recently moved and my water here is quite soft with a very low pH. As such, I've taken to adding many of my brewing salts in the brew kettle and only using salts in the mash to balance the pH. ...
4
votes
1answer
608 views

Small batch size brewing trub issues

Five gallon batches generate a certain amount of trub in the fermenter. However, its a relatively small percent of the total batch. I am interested in trying some 2 gallon maybe even one gallon ...

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