9
votes
3answers
2k views

What is the best type of beer to brew for a beginner?

What is the best type of beer to brew for a beginner?
7
votes
4answers
1k views

How do I test my water?

Inspired by this question. How do I test my water?
8
votes
2answers
2k views

When bottle conditioning, when should I re-yeast, and how much yeast should I add

I have a Chocolate Cherry Stout that is currently in secondary on fresh Cherries. It has been sitting on the cherries for 2 months now. As I prepare to bottle I want to be sure I have enough, healthy ...
13
votes
3answers
3k views

What's the best method to catch a strain of wild yeast for homebrewing?

I'm interested in learning about brewing using wild yeast, but I wonder what is the best method to catch a strain that would produce good results in homebrewing. And of course how to ensure that it ...
9
votes
6answers
351 views

Can anyone recommend a starters kit, available in the UK?

I have inherited a garage after a recent move, and as I also have off street parking, it seems only right and natural that I start to indulge my desire to start homebrewing. My intention is to be ...
0
votes
1answer
124 views

Is this recipe correct

Hi I'm brewing some apple wine at the moment, following a recipe for a dry apple wine from CJJ Berry's "First Steps in Winemaking" (2006 reprint p185). The recipe lists ONLY the following ...
29
votes
22answers
26k views

How do you label your bottles?

How do you mark, label, or otherwise identify the contents of your bottles? I'm currently using masking tape and a marker, but I'm curious what most other people use.
6
votes
1answer
732 views

What is the recommended serving temperature for each beer style?

I just finished a kegerator build, complete with a custom thermostat so I can set the temperature to the degree. Now the question is: What temperature range is best for each beer style?
27
votes
16answers
13k views

Are there any tricks for removing labels from bottles?

Some labels can be a pain to remove. I've tried soaking bottles in water with a little bit of dish soap but it doesn't really do much to break down the adhesive. What methods do you have for easily ...
5
votes
3answers
3k views

How long should a barleywine be aged before bottling?

I generally rack my beers to secondary for about a week before bottling just to clarify them a bit, but as I understand it, barleywines should be aged much longer to allow some flavors to develop and ...
4
votes
1answer
380 views

When brewing a gruit, how do alternatives to hops, such as mugwort, affect the bitterness and flavor?

I have read about gruits (beers made with no hops, using other herbs in their stead). Apparently, this was a commonly used technique before hops became so prevalent. Mugwort seems to be one of the ...
13
votes
3answers
826 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?
6
votes
5answers
3k views

How do you tell if your fermentation is stuck?

How long do you wait before taking corrective action if your fermentation doesn't start? Are there any other good ways to tell if it's just taking a while to get going?
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Is there a standard siphoning hose size?

We have a hose that fits some of our equipment (bottle filler wand) but it is loose on both the racking cane and auto siphon. Is there a standardized size for this equipment or does it vary?
7
votes
4answers
88 views

How do i determine the quality of ingredients?

I'm new to home brewing and want to make sure I'm using quality ingredients. I've been to a few stores, but have trouble knowing if what they offer is good quality or not. What tips / techniques can i ...
9
votes
7answers
5k views

What are the advantages and disadvantages of Buckets vs Carboys?

Currently I use glass carboys because the glass seems easier to keep sanitary and you can fill them with your spare change if you ever stop brewing. I'm wondering if having a bucket would be an ...
4
votes
2answers
232 views

What methods do you suggest for logging the brew process?

Brewing is a science and it is important to keep track of details in order to make improvements to your process and techniques, resulting in better beer. How do you keep track of your process? Do you ...
4
votes
3answers
5k views

Approximating Sugar to Apple Juice ratio in cider?

I haven't been able to find any reliable recipes or even rules-of-thumb when deciding the amount of sugar to juice ration in cider and perry. I'd like to know some approximations for sweet and dry ...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

How do I stop Cider becoming too acidic?

Although the taste of my cider is often excellent sometimes it can be too acidic and hard to drink large quantities. How would one: Test the acidity Control the acidity Also, what pH should it ...
12
votes
9answers
498 views

Book for beginners

What book would you recommend for a beginner hoping to start with extract recipes or from an extract kit?
23
votes
8answers
43k views

If/When to move to secondary fermentation

Digression from What's the point of secondary fermentation? What are the good rules of thumb for determining a. whether to use secondary fermentation at all and b. when to move from primary to ...
5
votes
3answers
278 views

Hop Utilization Resource

When substituting hops (both varieties and pellet/plug/whole)in a recipe, I would like to keep IBU as close to the recipe target as possible. However, the best utilization chart I can find is in ...
14
votes
7answers
7k views

How do you cool a lager on a budget?

What techniques would you suggest for cooling a lager during the lagering phase? Further, how important is the stability of that temperature?
1
vote
3answers
382 views

Sloe wine: going very slowly

Having started enough sloe gin this year to last a decade, I decided to use the rest of the fruit to brew some sloe wine. I'm new to brewing, and this might seem like an odd choice, but I have high ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Optimal counterflow wort chiller

I am planning to build a counterflow wort chiller using a hose outside of a copper tube. There are a great variety of lengths and types available commercially and I have read that many commercial ...
3
votes
3answers
172 views

Should I test my water?

A buddy and I have brewed a few batches of beer and they tend to have similar flavors when we're done. Could this be attributed to the water? What are some tests you would recommend doing to ensure ...
7
votes
7answers
2k 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 ...
42
votes
3answers
8k views

What's the point of secondary fermentation?

I've always bottled directly after the primary fermentation has finished. What's the point of the secondary fermentation? Can I use a bucket or is it something that really necessitates a glass carboy? ...
8
votes
1answer
3k views

When brewing a chocolate stout, should the cacao nibs be added in the boil, the secondary, or both?

When using cacao nibs to brew a chocolate stout, should they be added in the boil (if so, when?), in the secondary fermenter, or both? Is there a better ingredient to add to produce the chocolate ...
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
2answers
221 views

How do I determine where the off-flavors of my brew are coming from?

Is there a website I can visit that will describe where different off-flavors come from? For instance, if the beer tastes malty, fruity, or bitter, where can I go to determine why?
5
votes
3answers
166 views

Which brewing podcasts do you listen to?

Which are the essential podcasts that should be on my ipod right now?
13
votes
7answers
10k views

Is it OK to starting fermentation while wort is still warm?

I'm just getting started, so in my first couple batches I realized I had a problem cooling the wort all the way down to 60°F/16°C recommended by my instructions. I boil all of my water, but I don't ...
31
votes
6answers
8k views

How likely is contamination in an average batch?

I sanitize everything; carboy, bottles, bottle caps, tubing, funnels, etc; because I was essentially told that my beer would turn to deadly poison without it. I accept sterilizing the lot once ...
10
votes
8answers
6k views

How do I cut my extract brewing cost?

I'm trying to reduce my cost-per-beer, without investing in an all-grain setup. I know I'm pretty limited with what I can tweak (can't get around needing sugar, yeast, and hops), but here in Montana ...
8
votes
5answers
13k views

Why do red wines tend to be stored in green bottles and white wines not?

It seems that all red wines are stored in green or occasionally other dark coloured bottles and white wines in clear or light coloured bottles. Why is this?
3
votes
1answer
201 views

Why should I use a Decoction mash instead of a Single Temperature Infusion mash?

Why should I use a Decoction mash instead of a Single Temperature Infusion mash?
3
votes
2answers
479 views

Good holiday beer recipes? [closed]

I'm getting ready to brew up a holiday batch to bring to parties and give as gifts, etc. Any suggestions on a good one? I'm thinking a cranberry beer might be surprising and delicious...
5
votes
3answers
1k views

How do I do a decoction mash?

I've brewed a number of all grain beers and have been reading a bit about decoction mashing. However the explanations I've read have been a bit complicated. How do I do a decoction mash?
1
vote
0answers
140 views

New Wyeast private stcok yeast strains? [closed]

Has anyone had any experiences with the new Wyeast Private Reserve yeast strains. I just bought a Cask Ale, and wondered if anyone had tried a beer with it yet?
8
votes
2answers
364 views

How do I prevent off-flavors in ciders

There's an abundance of apples this time of year (admittedly getting thinner now), and I would like to try a decent hard cider, but in the past I've had serious troubles with Cloudy results Odd ...
8
votes
2answers
262 views

Sterilisation processes when taking hydrometer readings

When taking hydrometer readings, is it acceptable to return liquid to the fermenting vessel after taking a reading in a vial? Must the vial/measuring cylinder and hydrometer have been sterilised to ...
10
votes
4answers
1k views

Should you rehydrate dry yeast?

I've read conflicting opinions on whether or not to re-hydrate dried yeast. I've had successful fermentation with dried yeast in the past but have not tried re-hydrating. Has anyone had better/worse ...
4
votes
6answers
684 views

What type of beers stand up to temperature variation during fermentation?

I've just moved from a Condo into a house, where I am now paying for heat. In the area that my Domestic Sergeant Major has permitted me to brew in, the temperature varies from 16° to 21° C throughout ...
5
votes
2answers
222 views

I have some “expired” mead yeast, is it still good?

I have some liquid mead yeast that has expired a couple years ago, according to the date on it. It has always been kept in the refrigerator. Could it be revived and used or do I need to buy some new ...
12
votes
5answers
2k views

How do I keep yeast from a strain that I've bought?

I'd like to stop buying yeast all the time, especially when I use the same strain repeatedly. This is especially a problem when it comes to seasonal strains. I'd like to brew with WLP351 Bavarian ...
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?
8
votes
5answers
3k views

How do I improve head retention?

I have noticed that many of my beers have terrible head retention. How can I improve this? I usually brew lighter hoppier ales.
9
votes
5answers
1k views

Best way to mill grains

I've brewed many extracts but want to get into whole grain brewing. What equipment do I need? Any recommendations for beginner / low-cost grain mills?
0
votes
0answers
133 views

Must-have supplies for making one's own beer? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What equipment do I need to buy to start homebrewing? What are the must-have supplies for brewing your own beer? In addition to ingredients, what types of containers, ...

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