Going back to kits?

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Clint

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Hello all
Recent months have seen me with loads of malt and hops but absolutely zero time to fit in a single AG brew day never mind the multiple I need to get my decimated stocks back on track. Then there's the thought of bottling...potentially a couple of hundred...
I'm at a bit of a crossroads...
 

the baron

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Go back to kits for a while Clint I did it last year to get my stocks back up as work commitments took over.
I do not have to tell you there are some great kits out there nowadays athumb..
 

Chippy_Tea

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When was the last time you made a kit Clint, do you think you would be happy drinking kit beer most of the time?
 

Horners

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Hello all
Recent months have seen me with loads of malt and hops but absolutely zero time to fit in a single AG brew day never mind the multiple I need to get my decimated stocks back on track. Then there's the thought of bottling...potentially a couple of hundred...
I'm at a bit of a crossroads...

This is precisely me. I have a massive stock pile of pre-crushed malt of every variety imaginable and a fridge full of hops including plenty of expensive US ones. I have not had an AG day for 12 months and life keeps getting in the way.

I did a Festival razorback kit a few weeks ago, a cider kit and a pilsner kit followed just to have something on tap.

Seriously thinking of offloading the grain and any previously opened hops to a local FB group as it is taking up space and I cant see getting through it before it goes off.
 

An Ankoù

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Seriously thinking of offloading the grain and any previously opened hops to a local FB group as it is taking up space and I cant see getting through it before it goes off.
Might be an idea to hang on to it in case malt prices go through the roof due to wars, famine, pestilence et al. Properly sealed and stored it'll keep for years even if it's milled. Opened hops, on the other hand, will deteriorate. But then we're not faced with a hop shortage.
 

Alastair70

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I bought a mate one of these in the spring (50th birthday present with a dark farm keg to put it in). He made a stunning beer with it.
 
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I did quite a few kits when I first started brewing and made some very good beers. However, every single one had that home brew twang. I never made one that would pass as a commercial beer. Since moving to AG, that twang went and I’m now making some very good beers. About a year or so ago, I won a MJ Irish Stout kit in a giveaway on this forum. It had great reviews and came with 1.2kg beer enhancer as well so I gave that ago. My thinking was that the years of brewing experience and knowledge I’d gained since making a kit beer would mean I could make this kit and it’ll be fantastic. No chance. The homebrew twang was back and it wasn’t a patch on the AG stouts I’ve made. Don’t do it @Clint 😱
 

Horners

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Might be an idea to hang on to it in case malt prices go through the roof due to wars, famine, pestilence et al. Properly sealed and stored it'll keep for years even if it's milled. Opened hops, on the other hand, will deteriorate. But then we're not faced with a hop shortage.
In fairness any open hops are revacced and stored at 1c
 

labrewski

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Defo go down the keg Road cheap and cheerful way if u look in the right places
I don't think kits would satisfy me been ag just over 2 years now
Just for fun I bought 2 kits that I thought were fantastic when I was in the kit time of my life and they were no way near what I drink now
 
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I decided to go to Kits when we moved to a smaller house and I’ve never regretted the move from AG!
athumb..

I moved on to SS 10 litre Kegs (from a variety of providers) and now have six of them; usually with three or four on tap at any one time.

I deliberately brew stuff that I can drink without falling over; and get any extra hoppiness using a hop tea when I keg a brew.

Old age must have cured my ability to taste the so called “home brew twang”, (or my brewing is getting better), because modern kits taste like real brews!

I still use the 2+2+2 system and still experiment with taste; but now a “Brew Day” is a lot shorter.

So, whatever you decide, enjoy!
:hat:
 

obscure

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While I am mostly all grain these days I still do the occasional kit, when stocks are low and I just don’t have the time due to work to brew an all grain batch. On the whole I do think all grain gives me better results but I do find I can get a perfectly drinkable keg of session bitter or stout with absolutely minimal effort.
 

Cheyne_brewer

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I still brew the odd kit to keep stocks up. Your life would be much easier using kegs or pressure barrels. I always find ales much better at the low carb levels and warmer temperatures in a PB.

Don’t forget your kit brew will reflect what goes into it so treat tap water for chlorine and preferably use a cheap spring water. In my kit heyday the twang disappeared using Aldi Chase Spring.

You won’t match a decent AG brew with a kit but can get very close. Muntons Flagship Hazy IPA is a fantastic reintroduction into kit brewing - give it or another premium no-sugar kit a go & see what you think.
 
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Hello all
Recent months have seen me with loads of malt and hops but absolutely zero time to fit in a single AG brew day never mind the multiple I need to get my decimated stocks back on track. Then there's the thought of bottling...potentially a couple of hundred...
I'm at a bit of a crossroads...
Clint, you fish and you are a keen gardener, while you do both of these things you are at peace with the world, you switch off. Treat bottling the same, make bottling a tranquil experience. Plus the end product is a country mile better than you will get from a keg.
 
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I have the same issue fitting in AG at the moment. I seem to be able to do an AG brew every couple of months but that's not enough as I share with neighbors.
I have recently been doing DME extract brews which save a lot of time as the full volume need not be boiled and what is boiled is topped up with cold water so no time spent cooling either. I've done a couple of cracking beers too (if I do say so myself). I guess it's more of a half-way point between a kit and AG.
 
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Clint, you fish and you are a keen gardener, while you do both of these things you are at peace with the world, you switch off. Treat bottling the same, make bottling a tranquil experience. Plus the end product is a country mile better than you will get from a keg.
I don't know about the last sentence but I rather enjoy bottling. A 20L brew takes me about an hour to bottle, including half an hour cooking the bottles at 110c. Also enjoy popping the cap off and pouring it.
I'd have to be desperate to go back to kits though...
 

Graz

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I'm on the opposite end of this, I only brew kits, never ventured into AG. I'd like to one day but the thought of dedicating a large part of a day to a brew when I've got a hectic family life and a billion other jobs I could be getting on with at home means it's just not viable currently.

Also some of the kits, e.g. Muton's Flagship range, are so flipping good now I'm not even sure it warrants spending hours making a brew. I guess I've been lucky as I don't really experience the kit "twang" that others describe. Maybe I have good tap water or that I always brew in a temperature controlled brew fridge but whatever it is it works for me.

Also gave up on bottling (and pressure barrels) a few years back and splashed out on a corny keg setup. Never looked back. Only wish they were 23L and not 19L but in reality putting the first bit out of the fermenter into 6 - 8 bottles is not too difficult and I have a back log of bottled beer to fall back on if I don't brew for a while.
 
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I think kits are the beer equivalent of ready meals you some work to do but not much. All grain is the equivalent of cooking from the ingredients. Some days you haven’t the time or inclination to cook from scratch but you know it will be better.
PS
this assumes you can cook or brew to a good standard. 😀
 
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I think kits are the beer equivalent of ready meals you some work to do but not much. All grain is the equivalent of cooking from the ingredients. Some days you haven’t the time or inclination to cook from scratch but you know it will be better.
PS
this assumes you can cook or brew to a good standard. 😀
Good analogy…and caveat! 😉
 

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