Skip to comments.Itís Beer Thirty FReepers! Time For The Homebrewing / Wine Making Thread #3 June 15,2012
Posted on 06/15/2012 3:30:28 PM PDT by Red_Devil 232
Good afternoon/evening FReepers. Yep, it is Beer Thirty Time!
Happiness is a bubbling airlock!
GLASS OF MY CRANBERRY MEAD MELOMEL HONEY WINE
While we all enjoy a mug or glass of our favorite beer or wine I thought we could discuss the most important ingredient we all need to make our homemade beers or wines.
I have used both Wyeast and White Labs liquid yeasts and also dry yeasts mostly Safale 05 and 04 for fermenting my homebrews. I always keep at least one or two of the Safale yeast packs in the fridge as a backup, just incase. Last summer the heat during shipping did in a smack pack of Wyeast I had ordered and the backup dry yeast I had in the fridge saved my beer. If you use the liquid yeasts it is advised you use your suppliers cold pack shipping option, especially during the warm months. If you dont have a local homebrew store near you, having a backup yeast supply is essential. I also keep at least 1 lb of Dry Malt Extract around so I can make a yeast starter.
Use a yeast starter
Some experts recommend pitching at least 192 to 200 Billion yeast cells into a five-gallon wort of a medium gravity ale. Higher gravity ales and lagers will require more yeast cells. Both of the liquid yeast brands mentioned above only contain 100 billion cells and the 11.5 gram dry yeast packs of Safale only have 70 billion cells. A yeast starter will boost your cell count to the proper range suggested for a quick start and efficient fermentation and reduce your costs for yeast. Below is a link to why BeerSmith recommends making a starter;
Making a Yeast Starter for your Home Brew Beer
Here are some basic guidelines and instructions, from Midwest Supply:
1. Activate a Wyeast pack and allow it to swell. Wait until the yeast package has swelled to at least 1 inch thick. Or shake up a room temperature White Labs vile. Dry yeast packs just need to be at room temperature.
2. Heat 4 cups water in a saucepan and when hot, dissolve 1 cup Dry Malt Extract (DME) in the water. If you have any yeast nutrient available, you can add ½ tsp to the mix. Its ok to leave out the nutrient. Lightly boil the wort for 20 minutes. The goal is to create a starter about 1.040 in specific gravity.
3. Sanitize your flask, growler, mason jar etc.
4. When the boil is complete, gently pour the hot wort into the sanitized container. Cover the opening of the flask with aluminum foil. Be careful when doing these steps, use a pot holder to move the flask.
5. Cool the flask in an ice bath. It helps to gently swirl the flask and periodically add ice to the bath to hasten cooling.
6. When the starter wort has cooled to around 70°F (the flask is cool to the touch), shake the flask vigorously to introduce oxygen, and then pitch the yeast. Attach the stopper and airlock.
7. Ferment the starter around 70°F for 24-36 hours for maximum cell growth. Do not expect to see a vigorous fermentation or layer of foam as you would see in a primary fermentation. To increase cell growth, you may wish to agitate the starter periodically to introduce oxygen and remove carbon dioxide. Stir plates are an excellent way to significantly increase the cultures population. The starter may be refrigerated for up to a week before using, if need be. If refrigerated, allow the yeast to warm up before pitching on brew day.
8. Pitch yeast starter into cooled, aerated wort. Agitate the flask to get the yeast into suspension before pitching. Alternatively, you can drop the yeast by refrigerating the yeast starter for a few hours and decant the fermented starter liquid leaving the yeast cake on the bottom. Add a few ounces of boiled and cooled water and swirl to create a slurry. Then, pitch the slurry into your wort. Some brewers prefer this method to leave the fermented starter wort out of their batch or to do a subsequent, larger starter to generate an appropriate pitching rate for high gravity beers or large.
Another thing I have found helpful especially at bottling time and to help determine if a beer is carbonated. I like to use one PET bottle when bottling. I can squeeze the PET bottle and feel the carbonation level. If it is firm and hard to squeeze, I know it is ready.
I hope this was useful info for some of you. Now let's get brewing! Please let the thread know what yeast you prefer and why and how you use it.
Wahoo! Beer/Wine thread!
I checked our recipe books for fig wine & found nothing (referring back to last week’s thread). However, Jack Keller has a Fig recipe...
The wine-making book we use actually tries to make a wine from fruit that is less reminiscent of the fruit than a generic grape wine. We’ve gotten in the habit of doubling up on the fruit in the recipes to enhance the fruit flavor. Not sure how fig will turn out but it should be interesting.
Could you add me to the list also?
Always fun trying something new. There are so many I've yet to try.
This is the best time in history to be a beer drinker. So many beers, so little time.
We live in wondrous times.
Life is good =)
Hey! Thanks for the link to that web page! I would probably make a Mead out of my Figs. Basics are there on the site - why not make the food of the gods into a drink of the gods?
I’ve wanted to try making a mead. Someday you’ll need to start a mead thread! :-)
Added. Have a good time. We meet every Friday at Beer Thirty, 5:30 Central.
You are in the right place for Mead, Beer and Wine already!! come join us. Every Friday at 5:30 central.
Want to share that molasses beer recipe? Sounds interesting.
10 year home winemaker and former commercial winemaker here. I would like to be added to the ping list, please! Here’s to happy fermenting!
This one was my favorite of the event which also won the peoples choice award:
Mead is easy it just takes time to age. Honey, water and yeast. That is all you need.
I was VERY skeptical when I read it. But it was cheap enough to try, and I was very surprised when I tasted it. It's working it's little heart out now and dropped from 8.5% to 7% spec. gravity today.
This may be my hot weather 'beer'.
You are added. I hope you will stop by often and share your wine making knowledge with us.
Did the honey take any special preparation? I worked at a university & had an opportunity to talk to someone in the Food Science Department. He indicated that the honey needed pasteurization or something before being used for mead. Been a while & I don’t remember all of the conversation.
Never trust anything a cook says unless you run the numbers yourself. ;)
Way past time for me to brew again. Just drank the last of my Irish Blonde keg. Many tears and gnashing of teeth.
I have a keezer so I’ve considered another lager. I’ve only done one and it had so much diacytl that it tasted like movie popcorn. Nasty. I was able to clean it up by getting another yeast culture going, raising the temp of the beer, pitch, and let the little yeast-beasties do their clean-up work. It helped a lot, but I didn’t share that beer with friends.
I seem to remember one of the founding fathers had a molasses beer. Then again, spruce, molasses, corn, heather, were all common. Ya brewed with what was available!
Did you do a boil with the molasses and sugar? Sounds close to a Mead type of brew with the molasses and amount of sugar replacing the honey in a mead.
Yep! It does sound interesting, doesn’t it? Like a mead.
What kind of yeast?
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