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Beervis

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Everything posted by Beervis

  1. I'm sure you'll enjoy it, I was really impressed. Been waiting for Coopers to come out with something that is a bit inspired by their home brew concoctions. Now all we need is a commercial Robochoc ?
  2. I'm doing a 'get rid of ingredients I don't really want or need' brew today. Toucan Coopers Wheat + Canadian Blonde on a T-58 + Coopers Ac+L yeast cake. I've got 25gms of Hallertau I might add as a hop tea but not really sure if it would suit the style, if this thing has a style ?
  3. I'm interested to see how this turns out. I've decided I don't like this kit but I'm wondering if the 30gm Chinook hop steep I added to it ruined it. Maybe the wheat yeast + Goldings will make a difference!
  4. This batch (Vintner's Lager ROTM) ended up being really nice after a couple days in the fridge. Definitely overcarbed but pouring slowly/leaving the bottles open on the bench for a while did the trick. The pilsner flavour matched with Nelson Sauvin is really decent. Since I've had a few issues with this in the past I'll definitely be following Otto's advice and paying closer attention to my gravity readings rather than just waiting an extra week and bottling. In the process of doing this with my current batch, I've discovered my hydrometer is way out, it's reading 6 points low in room temp water, so I've had to adjust my readings. Current batch is definitely still fermenting post 1 week despite looking finished so glad I'm paying closer attention to it. Christina, I live in the sub-tropics so cellaring the bottles at 20c is never an issue even in winter, generally at least. Storing them cool is more of an issue since 3 fridges in a small townhouse would be pushing my luck with the other half ? I'm moving to all glass bottling soon so I can age beers a bit better, I've had a huge excess stock of experimental brews in plastic and I've found that PETs are unreliable after the 6 month mark. Some batches have been fine, had one batch all go flat bar one bottle, and other batches where 2 or 3 of the bottles are dud after that long. I'm not noticing any marked improvement in flavour either so I figure glass is the go. Cheers, Paul
  5. I bought a 6 pack of the tinnies and really enjoyed it. Someone mentioned that unmistakable hint of Coopers yeast flavour, which I agree separates it from Wild Yak and Swindler. Swindler I actually enjoyed, although the Coopers is definitely better. The Swindler is basically hop forward lemonade IMO, the session ale still tastes like beer. Repspec your session ale clone looks a lot more interesting than the ROTM.. will have to try brewing it sometime. Got me thinking actually, I've enjoyed most of the ROTM's I've brewed but perhaps where they fall down sometimes is in not enough hops for the flavours to really jump out. There's been a few that were really nice, but I could still taste a hint of 'kit' hiding in there
  6. I've had good results with the Coopers recipe packs (ROTM) by forgoing the dry hop completely and adding those additions at flameout instead. I find that I usually have lots of home brew and I don't drink a lot, so the aroma punch from dry hopping is generally gone by the time I drink most of the batch. The ROTM's generally don't use a lot of hops anyway so I've found it's a more economical way to use the hops as well. It's too late for this brew, but for a future one you could try boiling a bit of LDM, adding the hops at flameout instead of dry hopping. It's also a money issue for me, I can't afford to be dry hopping 50-100gms in one batch.
  7. Agree with all the above points, except I have had a few brews where the krausen never dropped back into the wort even after 2+ weeks, so I'd be more inclined to go off your hydrometer readings than waiting for the krausen to drop. You can shake it like Christina mentioned or whack it with the stirring spoon, personally neither of those have worked for me. Let us know how it turns out, I've only brewed this kit once, and I didn't really like it. Seemed quite heavy and chewy for a pale ale, only without much hop character to balance it out. Although I did a hop tea with 30gms Chinook and I wonder if that ruined it. Other than this kit I've had pretty good results with the Thomas Coopers series kits, for basic kit swill they have good body and flavour profiles.
  8. That would be the pudding at Govindas that I always avoid
  9. I've had the same issues there too, with the dry hop, although it doesn't tend to be every bottle just a few really bad ones and most ok. This time it's different they are all overcarbed except for a couple of dud bottles that went flat. I've had the opposite problem too where the whole batch was good at 5 weeks then all of them bar one were flat a month later. It only ever seems to happen with lager yeast.
  10. Thanks for your replies everyone. A few things: Unfortunately I didn't write down my FG. Just remember it being in the suggested range for the recipe. I've had off readings before though so I wouldn't be surprised if that was part of the problem. Also I didn't let the temp rise at the end to finish off the fermentation as I've heard you should do with lagers. It doesn't taste infected so I'm guessing the fermentation was stalled or incomplete. I always leave primary for 2 weeks though regardless of the FG and how the beer looks so I thought I was safe there. Christina, I brewed the batch on 22nd Jan, bottled 5th Feb and tasted a couple tallies on 12th March. The funny thing is they were fine then, it's only today when I went back to them that they're really overcarbed. Just checked my second carton and they are all rock hard. Like you say chucking them under the stairs isn't 'lagering' so I'm wondering if my ambient temps are too high and they should've all gone in the fridge after 5 weeks. Oh for more fridge space! Only 2 of the bottles were flat so I'm putting that down to those two leaking air.
  11. Hi team, I've finally gotten around to drinking this Vintner's Lager recipe pack I did a while back: 1 x 1.7kg Thomas Coopers 86 Days Pilsner 3 x 500g Coopers Light Dry Malt 1 x 250g Caramel Hell Grains 1 x 25g Nelson Sauvin Hop Pellets 1 x 25g Enigma Hop Pellets 1 x 11.5g Saflager S-23 Dry Yeast + kit yeast 1 x 250g Coopers Carbonation Drops Only alterations I made to the orig recipe was to use half the hops @ 5 mins and the rest at flameout instead of dry hop. I left it in primary around 15 degrees for 2 weeks but didn't CC. Anyhow, the issue is, a bunch of the PETs are rock hard gushers, some so bad that the base of the bottles has blown out to the point where its almost cracking and won't stand up, then a few of them are flat. This isn't the first time I've had issues like this, although the worst previous 2 were with 3 carb drops, and the other with commando dry hop which I thought explained it. I was happy with the SG and fermentation looked to have finished a while before I bottled. I only used 2 carb drops so shouldn't be an issue there. My theories so far: 1) lagering too long at room temps? and 2) maybe old PET bottles? In terms of taste, once I leave it to sit open on the bench for a while it's a really nice drop. I'm wanting to move to all glass bottles soon though and issues like this make me wary of bottle bombs. Paul
  12. Another thing to note is unless you've changed up the brew majorly (haven't read all the thread but assuming you're using a kit) it's fine to follow the Coopers instructions. They've done extensive product testing on all these kits and if you follow their instructions for basic brews you can't go wrong. The only thing I do differently is drop the suggested temp back a couple degrees which I can do because I have a brew fridge.
  13. I've had the persistent Krausen thing happen to me a few times, unfortunately my note keeping system is crap so I can't remember which brew or what yeast I used. I think US-05 most likely. I just follow my normal steps, leave it in primary for 2 weeks, sometimes I cold crash for a few days, and then bottle. I haven't had any major issues. There was only one that possibly hadn't completely fermented but I don't know for sure because I used 3 carb drops per PET on that one and I think that was too much. I would just go ahead and dry hop, wait a few days and bottle, I'd be surprised if there's any issues.
  14. I don't think that temp movement will cause you too many problems because at all stages it's at or below 20 degrees, it might take a bit longer to ferment out. But in my experience when it's getting up to 24/25/26 regularly then crashing down overnight, you get a really average beer. I made a tonne of K+K's under the house with no fridge at my last place and they were all pretty bad. As for the taste, there are heaps of resources and forum posts out there discussing off flavours in beer and if you google 'kit twang' you'll find heaps more. The problem with researching off flavours is that most of the resources are to do with full extract and AG brews since there doesn't seem to be much of a kit brewing community in the states and that's where most of the resources are from. From my personal experience, a good kit brew should taste like beer and have the flavour associated with the beer style. It will probably taste a bit cheap and basic but it will taste like beer. 'Kit taste' is when it doesn't taste much like beer or enough like beer - I tend to describe it as a slightly sweet, thin taste, it's hard to put a finger on. Kit taste has a marked aroma too, which is along the same lines, a bit sweet and chemical-y. It's hard to describe but once you've noticed it a few times you'll know exactly what I'm talking about. Sometimes just leaving it to condition for a couple more weeks will do the trick, but not always and it's not always because of the yeast or temperature control either - I feel like I've had good practices in both of those for ages now and it still sometimes pops up. I think some kits just aren't that good. Also carb levels that are too low have been a problem for me too. I've tried deliberately over-carbing some of the lighter style kit beers and that has made them a fair bit better. That's using 3 carb drops per PET tallie. Don't leave them to condition for more than 4 or 5 weeks though because they keep carbing up and get bad after that. I'd put them in the fridge after 4 weeks. Sorry for the ramble I hope that helped!
  15. Resurrecting this old thread to give new brewers my 2 cents on kits. I'm planning to move to extract once I've drunken the backlog of kit brews so wanted to give my thoughts on the kit experience. Since this forum sorta functions as a wiki as well as a conversation! I've brewed heaps of kits and ROTM's now with mixed results. Definitely temp control with the brewing fridge has made the biggest difference in quality, the next biggest difference has been using hop boils/dry hops and the steeping grains come in 3rd. The best kit beers I've made have had generous amounts of both grains and hops. I'm not that experienced at picking out yeast flavour profiles except the really aggressive ones like Saison, but my hunch is the coopers kit yeasts don't add much even when you use 2 packs so getting better yeast for the style is also really helpful. Or reculturing the coopers stuff. Getting the carbonation right to style is also important. I've found all the beers I've made with 'kit taste' have also been a bit flat, and we all know what 3 day old flat lemonade is like. Also, not all kits are created equal! I think it's a useful approach to try a whole bunch of different ones and see what flavours you're enjoying. I've found some consistently produce better results. The more robust flavoured kits like dark ales/stouts/ sparkling etc mask off flavours better and tend not to have 'kit taste' which Christina mentioned above in this thread, and some others suit the style they are supposed to be emulating better. That could just be personal preference. Personally, if I was gonna make a k+k it would definitely be something like a dark ale or porter rather than a light flavoured kit. Overall I reckon the Thomas Coopers series are the best by far, I haven't tried the new lager and I didn't like the Bootmaker much but the rest of them are really nice with some additions. I had a Franziskaner at the pub the other day and I think it was only maybe 15% better than the Zesty Blond ROTM so there you go. Others might disagree with me, but IMO the worst kits are the craft series. I've brewed heaps of the craft ROTM's, a couple of the recipes were a big success but by and large they haven't been very good. Marked kit twang in quite a few of them and they often taste like the flavours aren't well blended even after a few months of cellaring. I think it has something to do with the high alcohol content and the small volume of the brew. Something definitely wrong in there. The most recent one I tried was a hop bomb (Bridge the Gap 25g Centennial 25g Riwaka 25g Simcoe) and the kit twang was clearly detectable under all that. Gave a couple to my mates and they struggled with it. Did a direct comparison with a Bootmaker k+k with a 30 gram Chinook hop steep and they thought that tasted much less like 'home brew'. Anyhow that's that, I'm steering away from the craft ROTMs from now on but will use the little fermenter for small extract brews. Happy brewing!
  16. Yeah, nice for a couple but a bit impractical I reckon. I've brewed heaps of beer above 7% and it's the stuff that gets drank the slowest. Taking up precious space in my 'cellar' Thinking of doing this one without the dex, I still think it'll be a nice brew.
  17. I think there's something about Coopers tins that invites wacky asperimentation. All the stuff about toucans seems to turn into a competition to see who can make the most insane stout known to humankind. I remember reading one toucan stout recipe where the dude threw a whole bottle of Kraken in the day before bottling Keep up the brewing Og, and relish the glory or suffering that will come with drinking the finished product. I'm thinking this latest one will lean towards suffering, but I'm cursed with a sensitive palette
  18. Hey Chris, if you're aiming to try the big cans in the small FV, check out posts by porschemad911 (John), there are some in the recipe section. He's been experimenting with mostly AG but quite a few kits and bits in the small FV with success. Some killer looking recipes there I'd like to try. I'm assuming you're OK with the brews being quite alcoholic, but apart from that the only issue you'd probably have is with the bitterness. So you wouldn't want to completely swap out the extra malt for just the extra volume that comes in the bigger tin. But otherwise you could make the recipes pretty similar. One thing you can do is choose one of the less bitter kits, like the Cerveza/APA and use spec grains to get the flavour/body you're looking for. There's been quite a few threads on this kind of thing if you dig around on here. From what I've read, experienced extract brewers recommend always starting with the lightest extract/kit you can find and building up from there.
  19. I've made both and the CS Winter beer tastes like a stout, the OS tastes a lot more like a dark ale. (to the suggested volumes) I think you're probably both right about the IBU calculation, I've been having thoughts about scaling some of those recipes up as well, and I've come to the conclusion that just fiddling with beersmith is probably as close as you're gonna get unless you just work out a size ratio and multiply all the ingredients. I thought about trying that but I want to avoid anything that uses odd fractions of kits. You could use a toucan of OS Dark ale as a base for any of those Winter Dark Ale recipes and get fairly close I reckon. Also I've found over a number of quite bitter brews that the IBU's aren't always a reliable indicator of whether the beer is gonna taste any good, or be too bitter once brewed.
  20. Thanks Christina, this is really helpful. I usually store mine in a cupboard under the stairs for about 5 weeks, the floor is concrete and it's in the middle of the house so I doubt the high temps we get outside make it all the way in there. I usually start drinking them after 5 weeks but I don't have much fridge space so some brews stay in there for months after they're carbed and conditioned. I recently discovered a batch of Bock (in PETS's) was completely dead, all flat as a tack except one. After this and having read that you shouldn't age beer for longer than 6 months in PET's I've decided to start lagering/storing in a fridge after 5 weeks. This means I have a tonne of beer I have to drink before I start brewing again. If I want to age a stout for a year or so, like Headmaster mentioned there is some increased risk probably? If I use one carb drop per glass longneck and keep it somewhere dark and cool I'm thinking this would be ok... not sure if it's a good idea to age stout in a fridge for months? Paul
  21. I've been wondering this too, just started bottling some of my brews in glass stubbies. The oldest lot have been in the cupboard since the 23rd of Feb with no issues so far. From what I've read around the place, bottle bombs are most commonly blamed on overcarbing, old/chipped/scratched/too thin bottles or infections.
  22. Funnily enough I have even older beers aged in PET that are fine. Go figure.
  23. I've got some more evidence to add to this thread, for anyone who's following it and as a resource for new brewers. I've got a tonne of old beers, 6+ months, all bottled in PET and I've been doing an audit. Had an entire batch flat except for one, that was a Craft batch so only 11 tallies. This was the Bock in Black recipe : https://store.coopers.com.au/recipes/index/view/id/152/ I drank a couple of them early and they were great but now they're all dead. I found one good one in there. The bottles were all new at the time of bottling, and head retention and carb levels were fine after 6 weeks. So this is +1 for not aging in plastic. I can't think of anything else that could've caused this, if it was about the high alcohol level then it theoretically shouldn't have been great after 6 weeks either. Possibly beers made with lager yeast need to be aged in the fridge? Had a couple other dead beers in there but that was random. Guessing dud bottles for those. From now on I'm planning to only age beer in the Coopers glass tallies. I also did a side by side test on several beers with a plastic picnic glass pulled straight from the pack and a normal beer glass I'd been using and putting in the dishwasher. Immediate difference in head retention, so definitely +1 for washing your beer glasses with sod perc or just hot water.
  24. Beervis

    Ipa

    It won't be the bottles, I've deliberately over-carbed PET's before and they coped with it fine. That beer is also supposed to be quite dark as well, when I've made it it came out a deep reddish brown. Other than session IPA's most commercial variants I've tried had a similar colour. Sounds to me like it fermented too hot and with too much of a variation in temperature. Too late to do anything about that now, but I would recommend leaving it for 3 more weeks somewhere not too hot, and then I think you'll find it's nicer. Also without any added hops it's an English IPA style so it should be malty and a bit sweet rather than fruity like the US style ones.
  25. I take the point about elbow grease and scrubbing like your life depends on it, but evidently with gear like PET bottles that is more difficult. Personally, I don't clean, I just soak. Remove any obvious dirt deposits, rinse off with hot water - that goes for FV, spoons, bottles, bottling wand etc - take apart anything that can be taken apart and then soak overnight, drain rinse and starsan. I still get the odd dud PET bottle, but I don't think I can be any more thorough than I am without making the process boring and painful. Not to mention damaging the lining of the PET bottles. One reflection I've got on this topic is potential for soaking solutions to not be strong enough? We're all trying to save money on brewing, and the branded cleaners can be expensive, possibly the solutions just aren't strong enough or left to soak for long enough?
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