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33

Temp Control for fermentation Hitting the happy-yeast zone prevents high-temperature off-flavors like phenolics and low-temperature under attenuation. There is a separate community wiki post on this subject.


25

How to Rinse Yeast for Reuse Collect yeast solids from fermentation. Place yeast in sanitized (or better yet, sterile) container with water. The water volume should be around 4-5X that of the yeast. A cylindrical, tall container with a screw-on cap works well. Leave some headspace for air for shaking. Seal the container. Shake vigorously. Really ...


24

OxyClean. The stuff works wonders. Fill a bucket with a scoop of OxyClean and hot water and let the bottles soak for about an hour. Most labels will simply slide right off; some will even float right off the bottles to the surface. The ones that don't will be easy to remove with a rag or sponge. You also generally never want to use dish soap or detergent on ...


24

It takes three to nine days for yeast to ferment a typical wort. After yeast consumes all the available food (or produces too much toxic alcohol) it goes into a dormant stage, flocculates and drops out of suspension. At this point it does not produce alcohol or CO2. Priming sugar is used to give the yeast a little more fuel so they will wake up and ...


20

Patience For me, this mostly applies to fermentation. Allow it to complete then wait a few more days. After packaging chill undisturbed for at least two weeks so suspended particles fall to the bottom. Like a good soup or pasta sauce, give the flavors a chance to mingle and mellow.


19

Image from HowToBrew Rather than thinking about stages of fermentation I like to look at the lifecycle of yeast. There is a great interview with David Logsdon from Wyeast on the April 5, 2007 episode of Basic Brewing radio. Yeast cells bud in the presence of oxygen. Only yeast cells with a reserve of glycogen have the energy to bud and that glycogen ...


17

I started cropping and repitching from my third batch ever. It is not hard at all, actually results in better beer, saves money, and is kinda fun. You get to use flasks and pour stuff back and forth and rub your chin and look wise. This article from the Wyeast people is geared toward commercial breweries, but I learned a lot about cropping from it. I ...


15

So it turns out: The proper amount of oxygen dissolved in wort is 8-10 ppm. Shaking typically yields around 4 ppm. It's possible to achieve as much as 8 ppm with plenty of headspace and LOTS of vigorous shaking. As an example, 5 minutes of shaking a 1.077 wort may only achieve 2.7 ppm. Siphon sprayers will be in the same range. Air with an Oxygen Stone ...


14

Yeast Managment Yeast produce different flavors during the phases in their lifecycle. Pitching the right quantity of healthy yeast is in the top two most important things you can do to control fermentation Ester production occurs most strongly during the growth phase, when you first pitch. Yeast uses oxygen to bud (grow). Insufficient aeration leads to ...


14

Yeast produce different flavors during the various stages of their lifecycle. Overpitching shortens or skips their "growth" phase (maybe a better name is "division" or "budding"). The bulk of a beer's esters are produced during this initial stage, so missing out on a fully-developed life cycle robs an ale of this often desirable quality. A by-product of ...


13

Using a Wort Chiller This has a few advantages: Better cold break Less chance for unwanted organisms to get a foothold Minimizes the time wort is in the DMS-precursor-producing temperature range Better retention of Hop aromatics and flavor


12

See this page from How to Brew: http://www.howtobrew.com/section1/chapter6-7.html which also references this page from How to Brew: http://www.howtobrew.com/section1/chapter6-5.html Also yeast slants are a good way to store yeast cultures. Check out this page for instructions on how to make them with agar. You can also use some wort with gelatin in it ...


12

First, time and patience. Moving to all-grain is a big step, but definitely an awesome one. Including cleanup, your brew day will extend to many hours. Probably close to 9-10 hours when you first start, though it will become faster as you learn your system. Equipment wise, I'm not sure what you have, so I'll just go through it all. Propane burner. It's ...


12

We soak ours in bourbon. Kicks the oak up a notch or two.


12

The first thing you must learn how to do is make a yeast starter. This is simpler than making beer but your sanitation must be very good, don't be intimidated. Yeast Starter Mix malt extract and water to make two quarts of 1.030 to 1.040 gravity starter wort. Consider optionally adding yeast nutrient. Sterilize this by boiling for 10 minutes. Cool to ...


12

Boiling is a fairly poorly understood process. That being said here is what I know. Partial-wort Boil Ups You probably already have all the necessary equipment Small footprint Easy to manage You can use your kettle for other things Downs Hop utilization suffers, meaning you must use more hops to get the same level of bitterness There is a limit to ...


12

In the January/February 2012 issue of Zymurgy there was an article on this very subject. The author gets into the detailed math of of heat transfer and then tries 6 approaches to using an immersion chiller to see which works best. His result was that the chiller worked best with the highest water pressure, and that swirling the chiller in the wort chilled ...


11

First, this is legal. You're fine on that point. Second, as mentioned before, not all beers have live yeast in them from which you might get a culture. Third, some breweries bottle with a yeast different than they ferment with, so it is possible that you'd end up culturing a stain that does not have the profile you are looking for. All that said, if you ...


11

The few techniques I use to speed things along are: Setup the night before. Start early - there is nothing worse than cleaning boil kettles and mash-tuns at midnight. If you need to pre-boil your water to remove chlorine and/or carbonates, do it the night before. Start heating the wort in your kettle as soon as you have a gallon or so collected, by the ...


11

Reading How to Brew By John Palmer. It's available to read online for free, or you can buy a hard copy. How to Brew is an amazing book for beginners to read and experts to reference. No brewer should go without reading it.


11

I like to rinse well, then soak in warm PBW (or cleaner of choice). I fill the keg with cleaner, put on the lid and shake really well. Then I remove the lid, poppets, O-rings and dip tubes and put them in the keg to soak overnight. Next day everything gets a good rinse in warm water. I fill the keg with some Starsan (or sanitizer of choice) and let the ...


10

I think you guys are making it way more difficult than it need be. I made a Sierra Nevada Pale clone. I took one bottle of SNPA, let it sit in the fridge for a few days, then carefully decanted all but 1 inch of beer. I then boiled two tablespoons of DME in 6 oz of water, cooled it and added to the bottle. Added an airlock and within a few days had an ...


10

You generally want to add fruit to the secondary fermentation. At this point, you already have alcohol that can help ward off any meanies hiding in your fruit. I am having trouble finding a source for this but I remember from a course I took that adding fruit to the primary will add more fruit smell and secondary would add more flavor. The smell part ...


10

It couldn't hurt Oxygen is one of the two beer spoilers that homebrewers can control. Reducing beer's exposure to it helps achieve maximum flavor stability. However Before going through the trouble and expense ask yourself if you have a problem. Do your beers taste like wet cardboard or stale crackers? Are you going to lay them down for an extraordinarily ...


10

I wouldn't bother. As Jack said, the CO2 given off during fermentation will provide a protective layer between your beer and the evil oxygen. If you want to be really safe, you could not use a secondary at all. I only use them now if I am adding fruit or something to the beer during fermentation. Instead I just leave the beer in the primary for 3–4 weeks ...


10

Full Wort Boils Boiling your full volume of wort — as opposed to boiling a concentrated portion of your wort and then adding water to the fermenter to reach your full volume — will significantly increase your hop utilization rates. Your hops simply cannot perform to their full potential in the high sugar concentration of a partial boil. Your ...


10

Fermentation temperature does play a pretty big role in how the beer is going to taste. If the temperature is too high you can get excessive amounts of ester production and also can produce higher alcohols and phenolics that are undesired. If the temperature is too low, ale yeast can be sluggish or go dormant too soon causing under attenuation. It can also ...


10

It really depends on what you're after. Traditionally, dried bitter orange peel is added late in the boil for bitterness. Dried or fresh sweet orange peel can be added late in the boil for a bit of flavor, and fresh sweet orange peel can be added to the secondary for aroma. So, you need to think about and define what it is you want the orange peel to do ...


9

For removing your own labels that you apply to your bottles, use a label with a hot-soak water soluable adhesive. When you're ready to reuse your bottles, a soak in hot soapy water is all that's needed to slide the labels off. Removing labels from store-bought beverage bottles can be hit or miss because each bottler can use different label materials and ...


9

It depends on what you're doing really. Adding fruit can be risky as there is always a chance of contamination. I've made fruit beers before and didn't want to boil them and lose a bunch of flavor. So instead I opted to freeze the fruit, and then slowly thaw it out in the fridge. Now keep in mind that freezing will not guarantee no contamination, but it ...



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