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14

I found How to Brew to be a very helpful book along with The Complete Joy of Homebrewing. I feel like it complimented Papazian's book well, and in some cases was a bit easier to read, or filled in any lingering questions I had. In the end everyone seems to go with Papazian's, but I think How to Brew was an easier read.


13

AFAIK, there are no benefits. They're all basically the same. Brewing sugar is corn sugar and while there may be chemical differences between it and other types of sugar, the end result in your beer will be indistinguishable. Sugars like piloncillo or demarara can add a bit of flavor, but the result of adding corn, cane, beet, or brown sugar are pretty ...


9

Top tier - Sparge Water Middle tier - Mash Tun Bottom Tier - Boil Kettle The main benefit to having the vessels stacked in this manner is that you can transfer water/wort without the use of a siphon or an electric pump, everything can be gravity fed from top to bottom. Three tiers also allow you to easily fly sparge much easier than other setups ...


6

It looks like you can boil the avocado, and skim the oil off of the top of the water, I'm not sure of the pectin content in avocado, as this could give your beer a permanent haze, so I would recommend mixing some pectic enzyme in with your "avocado extract" when adding it to your secondary to help get rid of the pectin. I found this article which seems to ...


6

Are you talking about not adding any hops at the beginning of the boil and relying on only late addition hops for bitterness? This is a technique I have read about and tasted a few examples and the results were pretty good. This works well in moderately bitter beers where you want a lot of hop flavor and aroma. Basically you eliminate the 60 minute ...


6

If you produce the same volume of beer with more malt, this will increase both alcohol and residual sweetness. It's the residual sweetness that will give it a heavier body. A couple other things you could try that won't affect the alcohol content as much: Mash at a higher temperature. Keeping the mash temperature close to 156 F. will lead the creation of ...


5

I just bottled 5 gallons of cider I made (my first batch last year was excellent, and strong). I've definitely found cider to be easier than beer when it comes to the actual brewing. That said, if you press the cider yourself and/or add in apple picking for 5 gallons worth of cider, you've got a bit of work to do. The recipe I used was specified by the ...


5

Kent Place Software produces some useful brewing apps for iPhone and Mac. They also have an iPad version in the works. I've used their Beer Alchemy Mac software for awhile. BeerAlchemy Touch is their iPhone version. It's a bit pricey at $14.99, but provides wireless syncing between the mac version and the iPhone version, which is really handy. Brew Math ...


5

Let me try to answer your questions. 1) Modern home brewers use airlocks to minimize the chance that airborne wild yeast or bacteria will populate the beer and produce undesirable characteristics. A brewer chooses a specific yeast strain for their beer because of the particular properties that that yeast strain has been cultured to impart on the beer. The ...


5

I agree with Tobias on more unfermentable sugars (high mash temp) and dextrine malts (carapils). I'm adding a separate answer because I've had good luck adding maltodextrin. Carapils, which is supposed to do the same thing, has given me somewhat inconsistent results - that is sometimes I notice it and sometimes I don't. People tend to use maltodextrin more ...


4

A similar question was asked here on the BN forum. It all boils down (no pun intended) to whether the wheat malt will have enough diastatic power to convert itself. The answer to that is a little confusing to me so far. The charts at the Home Brewing Wiki here give diastatic power as percentages, but other references I've found use Lintner or ...


4

No matter when you add hops, you'll get some bitterness. That amount will decrease the later in the boil you add them. As Chris noted, you can add larger amounts of hops later in the boil (usually at 20 min. or less) to get bittering levels equivalent to the traditional 60 min. bittering addition, but the character of the bitterness will be different.


4

The Brewmasters Bible. I bought this book when I started out about 5 years ago. It was easy to follow then, having never brewed before, and I feel there is still a lot I can learn from the book now. I don't have any other books to compare this too, but it served as an excellent starting point for me and I still find it to be a good reference.


4

Started doing hard ciders (apple, pear, hot pepper, peach, cactus pear, raspberry, pumpkin spice, about 60 gal total to date) last august and have learned a few key things. Using a juicer is just as good as using a traditional cider press. When you use the pressed stuff, you end up having the clarify the hard cider, while juiced apple cider is more clear. ...


4

It's possible, but cilantro's flavor relies on several very volatile flavor compounds. If you end up with the wrong ones, you might end up with a soapy beer. See Harold McGee's article from yesterday's New York Times about the various flavor compounds and how they affect taste. I would be very careful about this. As a cook, I'm generally very careful with ...


4

You can certainly make great cider that way, but it's hit or miss. I've made probably about 6-8 batches using natural fermentation and my record is about 50/50 great cider/vinegar. A more reliable method is simply to pitch some yeast into it. Almost any yeast will give good results, but I've made my best ciders with WY4766 cider yeast.


4

You are correct in assuming that Partial Mash and All Grain are BIAB-compatible brewing methods. I would say that if you are planning on doing Partial Mash, a bag would be recommended since you usually don't want to lauter the brew (maybe you do in some cases, but not any I have come into contact with). This means that having some specialty grains and ...


4

Dry apple cider usually takes several months to a year in the bottle to smooth out. I would not concern myself much with how it tasted at 4 weeks. If you want a sweeter cider that is ready to drink in 4-5 weeks, take a look at my answer in this question: Sweet sparkling cider without pasteurizing, sulphites or lactose Make a "graff" which is a malted ...


3

Your best bet is to pitch yeast into it instead of hoping for spontaneous fermentation. Keep in mind that the sugars in apple juice are completely fermentable. Which means your end result will be a very dry beverage that will taste much like a dry white wine unless you do something to enhance the body. For a 5 gallon batch add 1-2 lbs of DME and a pound or ...


3

I'm a little late to the party, but the best one I've used is iBrewMaster. It's currently available for $7.99 for the iPod/iPhone edition and $10.99 for the iPad edition. Rather than regurgitate all the features, take a look in the iTunes store here and here for more details. Overall, it has worked the best for me in managing the process from start to ...


3

I asked a while back on adding peppers and was given a link to an excellent article on adding chillies to beer. I went with the dry hopping technique, and used chipotle peppers instead of the original plan of jalapenos or habaneros because I wanted the smokey flavor and I was not at all disappointed by the outcome. In fact, I loved it. I want to do it ...


3

You tagged with first-time-brewer... if this is true, I would caution against making an infused beer right out the gate. Fancy beers can be a tricky proposition. That said, my best guess is that you could do an infusion similar to using vanilla, since it seems like a similar plant. See this question & answers about vanilla. There's some discussion ...


3

I agree with Denny, except that I can taste brown sugar, especially when used for priming. It is very subtle and mostly an aroma, but tastes slightly different from cane/beet/corn sugar. Same is true of honey; it mostly ferments out but leaves a subtle residual flavor. I like to use brown sugar on bottle or keg conditioned stouts (oatmeal, milk) and I like ...


3

1) It would be beer. Beer is an alcoholic beverage made from grain, it doesn't have to be made from barley. 2) The most important thing to remember about wheat is that it has no husk. No husk = no filter bed for your grain when you lauter. No filter = stuck mash. It is possible to lauter an all-wheat mash, but it takes a very long time and is tricky. This ...


3

It affects mainly the quantity of grains you need to produce a particular beer. Beers come out great with low efficiency, you just need to use more grain to produce them. On a homebrew scale, efficiency doesn't really make significant cost issue. Some people maintain that lower efficiency (e.g. no sparge) can taste more malty than beers where higher ...


3

If you're using a pre-hopped extract, no boil brewing is possible. All extracts have already been boiled by the manufacturer anyways; with extracts, the main purpose behind boiling is you need the higher temperatures to cause isomerization of the hop acids so the hop bitterness gets into the beer. Secondary reasons for boiling extracts are additional protein ...


3

It's tasting like wine because there are almost no sugars left in the cider. With no sugar, you really notice the acidity in cider which makes it taste more like wine. (I would say it's more like white wine than, red, but that's subjective). You could try sweetening the it to see if that makes it taste more like cider, and less like wine. Buy a can of apple ...


2

I noted that there are a few commenters above who appear to be confused about the question. Most brewers will know there is sugar at the brewing stage (eg during initial fermentation), and there is - sometimes, additional sugar added at the priming stage. The original question was about the sugar used at PRIMARY fermentation. The addition of sugar or ...


2

You can break down sucrose into fructose and glucose by boiling with a little water and citric acid. Sucrose is a disacchride that's made from the two monosaccharides fructose and glucose bonded together. Boiling with water and citric acid helps break the molecular bonds between these 2 simpler sugars, so sucrose brecomes a form of brewing sugar or invert ...


2

I've not seen any inexpensive density sensors either, which is surprising since they can be made from mass-produced components - a PZT actuator and a quartz tuning fork. The sensor works by producing a vibration and then measuring the resonance in the tuning fork to that vibration. The density of the liquid has a predictable affect on the resonant frequency, ...



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