Posts Tagged ‘homebrew’

6
Jun

Gee. that’s a lot of pumpkin…

   Posted by: admin    in Uncategorized

First crack at creating a pumpkin spiced ale. Freestyled it based on what was in the cupboard. After tasting it, clearly not enough pumpkin. After chats and reading it was suggested to try dry hopping it with pumpkin. Seems like a good idea.

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The pumpkin was roasted for an hour or so before being added to the mix. Also added some demerera to mix to correct the recipe, as i didn’t have it handy at the time.

Also testing out t-shirts to insulate the kegs. Protect them from light-strike and give slightly more temperature insulation. It’s a theory. Lets see if it works.

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The final test relates to agitating the fermenter to bring the yeast back into action. @carrywater suggested this one. I needed it because the Pumpkin Ale had slowed on fermentation and i wanted to see if agitating the brew would bring the yeast back into action to deal with the new elements I was adding. I also gave the Ginger brew a shake to see if that might give it a bit more activity to dry it out. Always experimenting…

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14
Jan

What the heck?

   Posted by: admin    in Uncategorized

I was working my way through a selection of Belgian (and German) beers last night when I cracked open a bottle of Delirium Tremens when i noticed the weirdest sediment I have ever seen. I am completely stumped as to what this might be. There were no strong off flavours in the beer, and apart from the odd visual spectacle, the beer was quite drinkable.

Any clues?

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9
Feb

@Brewnut’s homemade homebrew chiller coil.

   Posted by: Wobbles    in Homebrew

The Homemade Copper Chiller Coil

Again, digging through the archives of random crap I have shot whilst brewing over the last few years, I came across this little gem.  It is from late 2009, and my esteemed brewing friend & homebrew mentor @Brewnut was trying out brewing a mini-mash using his new brew kettle & burner setup.

In previous brews, we had always had an issue with cooling the brew from the hot break back down to a safe temperature for pitching the yeast.  Attempts had included sitting the brew kettle in the sink surrounded by ice and of course, just waiting for it to cool down.  *Hint: a covered brew kettle does not cool down very quickly.  The lid you put on top to stop it from getting infected also keeps the heat in….

Previous attempts at cooling the wort.

Based on the past experiences, @Brewnut and I had had lengthy discussions over beer looking at plate chillers and such on the interwebs, and decided that that was a little beyond our budget and needs, then he remembered he had a bunch of copper piping left over from the bathroom reno and an idea formed.  I should mention at this stage that besides being an accomplished brewer, @Brewnut is also a bit of a MacGyver when it comes to building, well, just about anything.

Using the copper tube, a pump he had lying around, some garden hose, some ice and and esky, he built a very cool and very functional wort chiller coil.  Trés cool.

The homemade homebrew copper chiller coil in action.

At the start of things, it was dropping a degree every few seconds.  This did slow as the ice melted, and in hindsight I should have not been quite so tight and bought a few more bags of ice.  From memory I bought 4 bags of ice, but I really should have bought 6, and topped up the esky about half way through.  Still as a first time experiment, very cool.

Not sure on the costs of this.  I was informed that the copper tubing isn’t cheap, but the rest of it is either parts from around the house, or a quick (cheap-ish) trip to Bunnings.  Either way, it will be much cheaper than the cost of a plate chiller, and you get the price of building something yourself.  If you want further details, comment on the post, and I will ask @Brewnut to kindly provide some further info on the specifics.

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8
Feb

Vigorous Cider fermentation…

   Posted by: Wobbles    in Homebrew

Whilst trekking through the photos from the Cider saga, I found this little video that shot late one night after pitching the yeast.  Literally within a few minutes of pitching the yeast, the airlock started bubbling away flat out..  I thought it might die down a little after a while, but no.  This video was shot at about 3am during all night editing session, hence me looking bleary and not making much sense.  I don’t know if this counts as crazy fermentation, but it was certainly vigorous.  Any way, without further adue, the video….

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7
Feb

Tipping out a case of cider. what happened?

   Posted by: Wobbles    in Homebrew

Boring Apples. Not Cider Apples.

Everyone loves to discuss their brewing successes, but few discuss their failures.  This is a tale of adventure, hope, dismay and in the end failure.  Not sure if anything will come of this, but it is a cathartic closure to this particular brew that might help me ‘harden up’ and get back on the horse of homebrew.

I had bigs hopes for this cider, though it was a spur of the moment kinda brew.  We set out with the best of intentions.  It was end of season, and the Mrs (Urban_Nanna) was making Pomodoro Sauce from end of season tomatoes from the Preston Markets.  Getting into the swing of the slow food thing, I grabbed a couple of palettes of Apples from the markets. Read the rest of this entry »

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31
Dec

Another year down. Here comes 2011 & a lot more brewing

   Posted by: Wobbles    in beer, Homebrew

Whilst there have not been many blog updates this year, there has been a lot of brewing and beer drinking going on.

Wobbles in Oregon, drinking Arrogant Bastard Ale. You are not worthy.

Wobbles in Oregon, drinking Arrogant Bastard Ale. You are not worthy.

This year has been a year of travelling, brewing and general tourism.  Not that I have the luxury of pure beer tourism, just more the opportunity to visit brewery’s and pubs whilst travelling for work.  There has to be some fun in it all! Read the rest of this entry »

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20
Jun

Coopers Home Brew missing from Coles Supermarkets

   Posted by: Wobbles    in Homebrew

After seeing a few comments here and there online, this afternoon I received an e-mail from Coopers confirming that Coopers Home Brew kits & ingredients would no longer be available in Coles & Bi Lo stores.

This is something that is annoying as up until now, Coles has been that great, almost-always-open resource for my home brewing activities.  Despite my best efforts of planning, it always seemed to be 11pm the night before that I remember to grab some more Carbonantion Drops for bottling first thing the following morning.

Coopers have siad that whilst they do what they can to fix this situation, they recommend you drop Coles a line to express your disappointment / frustration.

They can be contacted on: –
Email – coles.customer.care@coles.com.au
Phone Number – 1800 061 562
(8.30am – 6.00pm Monday to Friday and 8.00am – 4.30pm on Saturday)
Fax Number – (03) 9829 3818
Postal – PO Box 480 Glen Iris VIC 3146

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28
Mar

Old Brewery Tools

   Posted by: Wobbles    in Homebrew

This arrived in the mail a few months back. My parents were digging through the shed and found these stainless steel funnel & jug specifically designed for craft brewing. Apparently my great uncle was an avid home brewer and owned a pub in Tasmania in the 60’s that was known for having local beers on tap.

A handmade stainless steel funnel and jug from (i think) the early 60's.

As a birthday present, my great aunt Sybil had these stainless steel funnel and jug hand made for him. The funnel is specially designed to get all the way to the bottom of a tall bottle (no bubbles) and even makes it to the bottom of my Coopers HomeBrew fermenter.
The jug is also designed to minimise bubbling during the pour, as the spout for the jug comes all the way from the bottom of the jug.
Not sure that these are super useful for my current brewing, but since they were handmade sometime in the late 50’s – early 60’s, they make a cool addition to the brew kit.

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30
Dec

Happy New Beer erm, I mean Year.

   Posted by: Wobbles    in Homebrew

Hey,
Just wanted to wish everyone a Happy New Year wherever you are. I will be celebrating the new year by cracking open my very own Coopers MicroBrew Kit. It’s something I bought myself for Christmas so I could fool about with some experimental brews at the house without effecting our more serious brewing expeditions.
Next year I hope to have a few more contributors to the site, bringing the rest of my brewing crew into the technology age, and getting them writing about what registers on their beer radar.
Cheers all, and hopefully your new years celebration includes so tasty craft brews.

Coopers Micro Brew Kit

Coopers Micro Brew Kit - the fun begins at home

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21
Dec

First Brew – well kinda…

   Posted by: Wobbles    in Homebrew

Ok, first up, this is actually from a few weeks back, but I hadn’t gotten my act together to do the blog yet, so I just took photos and much like brewing the beer itself, waited till the time was right.  This brew has already been bottled, so this is a series of photos from the process.  It ended up being not a bad drop for our first collaborative attempt, but like most brewing endeavours, there is still plenty of work to be done till we get it right.

The ingredients, tools and most important the recipe

Now I should point out that this wasn’t our first, first brew.  There have been others before, but this was the first time we were being all serious and stuff, rather than just farting about trying to make some cheap booze.  I’ll come back through this a bit later and fill in the details.

Cleanliness is next to godliness, and leads to good beeriness.

Cleanliness is next to godliness, and leads to good beeriness.

Of course it was going to be a Coopers Malt Extract. Ah Coopers. the bastion of the first time homebrewer...

Of course it was going to be a Coopers Malt Extract. Ah Coopers. the bastion of the first time homebrewer...

The Irish Moss & Yeast Nutrients. Always handy.

The Irish Moss & Yeast Nutrients. Always handy.

Mmmm. Worty. Black gold. Texas T.

Mmmm. Worty. Black gold. Texas T.

We always knew that those dodgy looking scales would come in handy for something legal...

We always knew that those dodgy looking scales would come in handy for something legal...

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@brewnut tending the Wort” width=”480″ height=”640″ />

All yeasted up and ready for some fermentation

All yeasted up and ready for some fermentation

What? That can't be bubbling yet...

What? That can't be bubbling yet...

Cut to several weeks later. Bottled and sorta ready for drinking.

mmm not much head there. A bit under carbonated.

oh yeah. a case of homebrew in a Crumpler bag. it was meant to be.

oh yeah. a case of homebrew in a Crumpler bag. it was meant to be.

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