At last....Game on!

Discussion in 'Beer Brewdays!' started by cheapbrew, Jan 12, 2016.

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  1. Jan 12, 2016 #1

    cheapbrew

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    Well I finished work at lunchtime, had a quick sandwich then @1-30pm started getting my equipment ready to do a brew.

    1 gallon/ 5 litres
    660g Maris Otter
    330g Irish Pilsner Malt
    mash @ 66°C for 75 mins
    3.5g First gold @ start of boil
    6g First Gold @ 15 mins from end of boil.
    Czech Pilsner lager yeast

    I put the lager yeast in a cup lukewarm water with a tsp of sugar, to start it off ready for later.

    I weighed my grains out and measured 4 litres of water into my pot.

    Then I started heating water and when it got to 75°C

    [​IMG]

    I added the grain and stirred it well to make sure there were no lumps, checked the temp again just over 62°C so I warmed it back up to 66°C and then gave a final stir

    [​IMG]

    and then I wrapped my baby up, first in bubble wrap then into a coolbag and then wrapped a blanket round it and covered it with my coat.

    [​IMG]


    Its mashing now so I thought I would start up thread whilst I'm waiting, I'm gonna go give it a stir soon and then get some water warming to 85°C ready for a dunk sparge.

    I've got my daughter taking pics for me but she is already moaning about the smell and that's just doing the mash!
     
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  2. Jan 12, 2016 #2

    Tony1951

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    Great stuff... Hope it all goes well. I'll be interested in your report on flavour because I just bought three hop plants of Prima Donna which I think is also called first gold. Hoping to be using a lot of that in a year or two.

    Keep us posted on your progress when you get the time.
     
  3. Jan 12, 2016 #3

    cheapbrew

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    Just before 75 min mash is finished I started boiling water in the kettle for the dunk sparge, I forgot to warm the pot so I had to put the gas on for a few mins to get it back up to 85°C,.

    Took the mash from the coolbag and checked the temp, 63°C so I'm quite pleased with that as it only lost 3 degrees.

    Dunked it in 3L of 85°C water and stirred and then left for 10 mins, lifted grain tube and sprinkled another 1L sparge water gently over grain then left to drain and finally gave it a good squeeze.

    [​IMG]

    Started the boil and it hit hot break just as it came to the boil, I added 3.5g First Gold hops

    [​IMG]

    and its currently boiling away nicely.

    [​IMG]

    Gonna add the 15 mins hops and a whirlfloc tab shortly.

    Finished the boil and plunged the pot into a sink full of cold water, I had a scourer over the plug hole to slow the drain down and kept the cold tap running, 20 mins later it was down to 25°C so I strained through a sieve into my clean FV,
    Then took a hydrometer reading @ 20°C and it was almost spot on 1048, maybe 1050

    [​IMG]

    Then pitched the yeast, gave it a stir and put the lid on.

    [​IMG]

    Then cleaned up and carried on with the chilli con carne I had started during the cooling down period to keep the family happy!
     
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  4. Jan 12, 2016 #4

    RobsHomebrew

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    Ahh I see your using the Czech yeast. I'm looking forward to see how this turns outfit
     
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  5. Jan 12, 2016 #5

    Tony1951

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    +1

    This guy truly is a Renaissance Man - brewing AG beer AND making chilli con carne in the same kitchen AND all cleaned up too.. :))

    Well done. My first brew had sticky wort trodden all through the downstairs. SWIMBO was all for clocking me around the head with a rolling pin.
     
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  6. Jan 12, 2016 #6

    cheapbrew

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    It all went really well, I'm usually quite messy but I was surprisingly good today, only spilled a few drips of hot water.Chilli was feckin wicked!:thumb:

    I've spent a lot of time reading tons of stuff on AG and BIAB over xmas and up til today and I had revised a few of the things I was gonna use or do after reading up,
    and then I had it all planned out in me head and even did a test with some wheat that I milled myself on our old hand quern to judge the water level for mash in the pot, and tested the heat retention of the bubble wrap n coolbag.

    I was itching to get going and couldn't wait for the brewery lads yeast any longer, so I'm trying the lager yeast to see the difference when the brewery lad gets the yeast for me and I can do one with that and the same grain bill n hops.
     
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  7. Jan 13, 2016 #7

    cheapbrew

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    Update : 16 hours later
    I looked this morning and its got a nice krausen forming and its bubbling nicely :thumb:
     
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  8. Jan 14, 2016 #8

    cheapbrew

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    Had a peek again this morning, was hit by an alcohol smell as soon as the lid was opened, it has a small covering krausen and bubbles.:thumb:
     
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  9. Jan 14, 2016 #9

    Tony1951

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    Great isn't it? :) Some people advise not peeking in and having a sniff too much in case you get something bad in there. Personally I struggle not to take a look, and I've never had any problems since I restarted brewing about a year ago.
     
  10. Jan 18, 2016 #10

    cheapbrew

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    Update:
    After a few days all fermentation had stopped, checked gravity it had reduced to 1040 ish, tried putting it somewhere warmer, still no joy, added the rest of the lager yeast, still no joy, I asked the brewery lad and he said try adding some of his yeast as maybe lager yeast was duff, so I did and still no joy.

    After a discussion it was decided that maybe I had got it too hot and I made too many unfermentable sugars, so we decided to add some sugar, but didn't have any so I used some golden syrup late Saturday night and it started bubbling and forming a krausen again. Checking thermometers in boiling and ice cold water shows they are reading low, so temps were hotter than indicated

    Sunday afternoon it was back to doing nothing, so I added some soft brown sugar melted in warm water and again it started bubbling, now this morning it is doing nothing again.

    Does this sound like it has too many unfermentable sugars?

    What can I do to rescue it?

    Do I keep adding sugar to get the alcohol up and settle for a sweeter beer?

    Any help appreciated.
     
  11. Jan 18, 2016 #11

    Spapro

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    Has the gravity moved any with adding sugar etc - what is the gravity now ? Still at 1040 or has it got any lower ?
     
  12. Jan 18, 2016 #12

    cheapbrew

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    I have not checked it since, I'll check it again in the morning.
     
  13. Jan 19, 2016 #13

    cheapbrew

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    I just checked the gravity and its dropped down to 1030 now, so I might add some more sugar and see how it goes, but maybe I'll have to put this one down to experience and learn from it.

    My thermometers are reading low so my temps would have been 10+ degrees hotter.
     
  14. Jan 19, 2016 #14

    GHW

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    If its dropped by 10 points in a day or so I reckon it's doing fine. I'm no expert on using lager yeast but if it's a true bottom fermenting lager yeast you're using, then you should keep it fairly cool, 13c ish I believe, though others will know better. Most activity should happen in the first few days so I predict it will drop a lot further between now and the end of the week.

    I'd keep an eye on it. Opening the fv every day isn't advisable cos of risk of infection, but if you want reassurance that it's progressing, take a hydro reading each day.

    I've now stopped worrying about fermentation stopping. If your temp ranges are right for the yeast style,you've pitched enough good yeast, and you've oxygenated the wort, it's a pretty reliable process.

    The only time I've had an issue was with when my wife switched off my heater and the temp dropped to 16 where I was fermenting a bitter with wlp002. Even that managed to finish ok once I warned it back up.
     
  15. Feb 5, 2016 #15

    cheapbrew

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    Today I racked my AG#1 and AG#2 off the sediment and into two clean DJ's which I had already added sugar water to at an amount of 40g per DJ

    AG#2 is very clear and AG#1 has a slight haziness, but I'm pleased with the taste of both, but I think AG#1 although not as clear actually tastes the better of the two which is surprising after all I did to it to rescue it!


    On the left = AG#2 , On the right = AG#1
    [​IMG]
     
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  16. Feb 11, 2016 #16

    cheapbrew

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    A week on and bottles for both AG#1 and AG#2 are nice and solid and AG#1 which was cloudier than AG#2 has now cleared up nicely.

    I also put the trub from both these brews into a tall thin bottle and the following day, poured off the settled beer from the top and got another 500ml of the two brews mixed, this was put into a PET bottle and is also now clear and solid.

    I'm gonna give them til the w/end then move to my colder conservatory and will taste after they have had a few days conditioning....I cant wait :grin:

    On Monday I did AG#4 which is another version of my wheat beer(AG#3) with slightly more wheat and a higher mash temp.
    And today I bottled My AG#3 wheat beer experiment...it tastes lovely :thumb:
    http://www.thehomebrewforum.co.uk/showthread.php?p=558913#post558913
     
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  17. Feb 13, 2016 #17

    RobsHomebrew

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    I'm looking forward to hearing what you think about them on taste test
     
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  18. Feb 22, 2016 #18

    cheapbrew

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    Had a cheeky bottle of each of AG#2 and AG#1, I had AG#2 first as it has had one week less time in the bottle, and although it tasted lovely it was a little flat, I hope this will improve with time in the bottle

    AG#1 had much more fizz and was nice and had a nice lagery taste (I used lager yeast first off) and I really enjoyed it, this tasted stronger than the AG#2, probably due to the golden syrup I used to drop the gravity making more alcohol so I'm looking forward to seeing how it matures.

    If AG#2 doesn't get more fizz over time then I thought I could always blend it 50/50 with AG#1 and it will go down better, but I'll see what the weeks ahead bring
     

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