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  1. It wasn't the beer. Couldn't have been the beer. No way it was the beer. I mean, the beer? seriously?
  2. Sounds feasible as long as the bittering hops would isomerise at 78.2C
  3. Do you mean "have I tried this stuff" as in "have I tried the Clausthaler commercial product? Well yes I have. IMO it's about the 2nd most palatable and "convincing" of the non alcoholic beers. Have I tried making non-a;coholic beer? No not yet but this has now got my attention. I'll probably annoy Kelsey again by picking his brains - he managed to make a palatable mid-strength (3.5ABV) from the malt that I made a while ago (There's a thread about that somewhere around here.) Seems to me a palatable mid strength is a good starting point (in the hope that removing the smaller amount of alcohol with heat might be less destructive to some of the components of the taste profile). So anyway, this has now got my interest as a side project. I'm thinking of replicating the Otto Von Blotto mid-strength by conventional means and then heat extracting the alcohol. I thought I'd keep the initial hop addition in the boill to either a smaller quantity or use a lower alpha acid hop as several internet sources assert that the bitterness is accentuated in the low/no alcohol style. (I suspect, but can't prove yet) that this may simply be due to concentrating the entire wort while trying to extract the alcohol by heat. Maybe this can be overcome by lower initial bitterness hops and later addition of hop teas to flavour and aromatise (is that a word?) the final product. BTW, I tried the ginger trick on Coopers Ultra Light this morning and it works. Cleans up the finish on the palate quite nicely. You need about half a cubic centimetre in the bottom of the glass. (Leave it as a chunk - don't crush or chop it. The idea is not to make it taste of ginger, it's to alter the balance on the palate.
  4. Hold the phone! This link asserts that Clausthaler has a process that "controls fermentation" to avoid alcohol production and in turn avoid the need to de-nature the beer in the alcohol removal process (heating) that other brands use. Link... This is alchemy, my friends.................
  5. Good point Scottie. I should have thought of that. I'm also inclined to agree that if the commercial breweries can do it, then so can home brewers - hopefully with a wider range of interesting results. Besides, these commercial low/no alcohols are cheaper than commercial alcoholic beer but still much more expensive than home brew. Some of them are pretty damned ordinary too. So far I've only come across three or four that are worth drinking taste-wise (all of them German) but of course that's just a matter of opinion. Anyway my previous diversion into home malting was fun so maybe trying a non-alcohol beer might be entertaining too. Smatterofact I still have 5 kg of home made malt on hand so I might give it a crack. Don't despair, Gonewrong. Problems are often opportunities in disguise.
  6. Interesting subject. Just a couple of things ocurred to me. It struck me as odd that a starting and finishing gravity isn't taken in the description that HM provided. Surely that would be the easiest way to determine how much alcohol has been removed by heating? (Caution though - a hot liquid is less dense than a cool one anyway). It mentions that we could expect a more bitter beer than normal, after heating but it doesn't mention how it might be possible to add back flavouring and aromatics during the reheat. I also read somewhere that holding the mash at the higher end of mashing temperature will give more unfermentable dextrins than a lower temp wort. Why create more alcohol than absoluteley necessary just to take it back out? Is primary fermentation alcohol really required to contribute to the flavour profile of the finished beer or would the flavours contributed by initial anaerobic phase be more what we are actually looking for? As an aside, it might be a good first step to see if you're even likely to enjoy your results. I'd suggest trying a few commercial non alcoholic/low alcoholic beers to see if there's anything that even remotely interests your tastebuds. Personally I have found Erdinger Akoholfrei Weissbeer) to be a standout favourite with Clausthaler a reasonably close second. I also don't mind Schlossgold - but it needs a small cube of ginger in the bottom of the glass to give a better balanced flaovour IMO. The reason ginger works is that apparently alcohol is not really a taste as such - it's detected by pain sensors as are ginger and chilli. It kind gives the sensation of drying off the syrupy coating on your tongue that non acoholic beers often leave which is what alcohol also does to the flavour profile. Your thoughts ladies and gentlemen?
  7. So far, I've only bought one bulk batch of grain. (25kg) What's left of it is still in its original bag inside my (switched off) fridge along with beer being bottle conditioned. I open the door frequently (maybe 2-3 times a day) to stop musty odours developing. The fridge, of course, will ultimately be re-purposed using the wealth of information on this most excellent forum. :-)
  8. Just remember. It's far better to be pissed off than pissed on.
  9. French Oak Chips? Drinking that beer will give you an outrageuze accent!
  10. Full speed ahead and damn the torpedoes! Good onya Christina.
  11. My sympathies, Christina. I scored an old English wine recipe book some years ago. (I mean it was old and from England - it wasn't written in Old English ) Most of the recipes were quite confusing and lacked sufficient detail, but hey, whaddya expect for ten cents at the local flea market? I remember making carrot wine and parsnip wine and beetroot wine. They came out surprisingly well whereas things that you might expect to make a nice fruit wine don't, like mango. Not sure what you do with the wheat. Steep it, I suppose. The raisins are necessary for proper vinification, but that may not matter if you're just making the base wine for vinegar, I dunno. How is the whole vinegar project coming along anyway?
  12. I'll go out on a limb here. I know a fair few people have a poor opinion of these gadgets but I use one of those bottle cappers that you push down the twin levers on each side to crimp the crown seal. IMO the simple cappers that you tap on with a mallet are bloody useless and (at least some) bench cappers are little better, especially when they get older. I've had my capper for twenty years and it's never let me down. The action on it really crimps sideways on to the crown seal and ensures a tight seal. There, I said it. (Ducks and sticks fingers in ears)
  13. I made a prickly pear wine a couple of years ago using the red "fruit" It was a pretty random experiment so I didn't really keep track of the recipe but firstly you have to handle these things with care - the fine hairs are a nasty skin irritant so use gloves to handle them and remove the fine hairs as a first step by singeing then over a gas burner. Then I just cut them in half and added them to a sugar solution and pitched yeast into it. After fermentation, I left it for a month or so on the lees and it ended up tasting a bit like a dry sherry.
  14. Years ago I made a sparkling mead with bakers yeast. It came out OK. It did have a slight bread taste, but then again, so does some Champagne.
  15. I was gunna suggest "International Talk Like A Pirate Day" but as far as I know pirates were rum drinkers.
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