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  1. PeterC1525230181

    Seeking hersbrucker hops craft kit recipe

    Thanks for those suggestions. All noted and saved. My fermenter has just been filled with an unrelated recipe (Coopers 'Yellowfin IPA') but I'll try these when it is empty again. Cheers, Peter.
  2. PeterC1525230181

    Seeking hersbrucker hops craft kit recipe

    I could manage that in winter but not in the middle of summer. Thanks. I could try halving the recipe to use in my craft kit fermenter but I have not done that before. Any suggestions for using a craft kit can, or at they all too heavily hopped already to let the Hersbrucker show through?
  3. PeterC1525230181

    Why do the recipes avoid the kit yeast?

    PS. Is the yeast the same with all the cans, especially the 'craft kit' cans?
  4. I have the Coopers craft kit and have tried various of the recipes in the Coopers database. I have noticed that they mostly don't use the kit yeast. I assume that the kit yeast is not bad yeast. Why would Coopers put in a poor ingredient when they could include a good yeast at no more expense? I understand that it might be a wisely chosen robust strain, or maybe a blend of strains, so that it can cope with a wide temperature range and not perform too badly. Is it just that the recipe authors are aiming for particular style and so choose something specific and different? How much difference do different yeasts really make or is it enough to just understand that lager yeast likes cool (8-12) and ale yeast can cope with warmer (18-20 or more)? Even in hot weather and without any active temperature control I can keep things to around 22 degrees - our bathroom stays quite cool. I am happy to just make a enjoyable drink without getting pedantic about whether it matches any particular style.
  5. Hi, My daughter gave me some little hops plants for Xmas. It will be quite a while before I can harvest anything. They are hersbrucker. On-line descriptions of their character are all over the place. I have the Coopers craft kit and have tried a few of their recipes and kits of the month and have downloaded the helpful Excel spreadsheet someone did for these. No recipe seems to use Hersbrucker. I have bought 50g of Hersbrucker pellets to try. Can someone suggest a recipe that would show off their character? I am thinking something simple like adding them to a relatively bland base, perhaps the Bewitched Amber Ale can without doing much else, perhaps boiling half in some water (how long?) to add to the can and water to 8.5L, then use the other half to dry hop later? Just using the kit yeast? Please pile in with any suggestion!
  6. PeterC1525230181

    free shipping!

    I am in Canberra but I just stocked up and don't need to order anything else for a while. If you don't find anyone else and if your order is only a little short of $100, let me know and I could probably find something to include to tip your order over the line.
  7. PeterC1525230181

    Bottle wash question

    At least 3x rinse out with lots of shaking with tap water immediately after pouring. Drain upside down. Store upside down so dust doesn't fall in. Then into a big pot of boiling water for at least 5 minutes just before bottling. I have only bottled two batches with this approach so far, so I can't claim this is infallible.
  8. PeterC1525230181

    Boiling water good enough to sterilise?

    Well doing the experiment now. I am on to my second brew sterilising only with boiling water. Bottles and implements were passed through a large pot of boiling water with 5-10 minutes of residence time. For the fermentation vessel I poured in a kettle full of boiling water, rolled about over all surfaces, the tap was exercised open and closed a few times with the hot water running through and I repeated the whole process a couple of times. The water used for the brew itself was boiled, which also helps to drive off chlorine, and then the lid left on until it was cool and ready to use. So far, so good. I'll report back with my tail between my legs if I get an infected brew. I assume that will be obvious if it happens?
  9. I was diligently sterilising my craft kit with bleach and rinsing it all out with hot tap water etc. Now I am wondering is there is any reason not to do the following, which would be much less work: -Boil about 9L of water in a big saucepan for 5-10 mins to 1) sterilise it and 2) get rid of the chlorine. -Pour some of it boiling into the craft kit vessel, swish it about, open and close the tap a few times to rinse the tap out with near boiling water. Surely this would kill most bugs? -Top up with the nearly boiling water to nearly the full volume required, leaving room for additions. -Put the lid on and set aside to cool. -When cool, add the brew tin contents and whatever other additions and yeast. I suspect this is not the favoured approach with standard brewing volumes of >20L because of weight and the risk of tipping boiling water over oneself. With <9L, the weight and size is manageable and less risky. If everything is pretty clean having been washed out from the previous brew with plenty of hot water and a soft cloth, wouldn't a dousing in boiling water be enough to sterilise well enough?
  10. PeterC1525230181

    Craft brew kit

    I think the simple answer is to stick to instructions and use the smaller tins. However, someone here recommended the Australian Pale Ale tin with nothing else added, brewed to 8.5L. I tried that. It was OK but not the best of my limited experience. So, you can do it and it does not necessarily come out badly. I have tried a few of the 'Recipe of the Month' craft kits and generally preferred those over the straight cans. I think the tins benefit from the extra hops and/or malt of the kits.
  11. PeterC1525230181

    2nd krausen

    I am not remotely expert in brewing, just a beginner, and only guessing based on unrelated undergraduate microbiology. Many microorganism including, I would guess, yeast, don't make all the enzymes required to use all potential food sources all the times. Instead they make small quantities of transporter proteins and sensing proteins for potential food sources. So, fermentation and cell growth start off using the best, easiest to use energy sources eg. glucose. A burst of growth would occur which you observe as the krausen. Then, when the first food source is exhausted, it takes a little while for alternative food molecules to be transported into the cell, detected, and for the cells to decide what is sufficiently abundant as an alternative food source to be worth getting kitted up to use it. Sending the signals to make extra transporter proteins and enzymes takes a while. Once it is possible to get cranking on a new food source, cell growth can resume. Perhaps that is the second observed krausen. I am not expert on what sugars the lager yeast uses by default and which it can use only after inducing the necessary enzymes and transporters etc. but perhaps they used sugars from the can first and the extra dextrose later?
  12. PeterC1525230181

    mixing not needed in fermentation vessel?

    Now, at almost 3 complete days, the layer of dense material from the liquid malt concentrate and the can is almost all gone. More precipitated material is sitting on top of that layer and fermentation still going. So, all is well, I think. Thanks again. Maybe I won't bother with stirring next time, after all. Not through laziness but the less time spent with lids open and the fewer items that get put in, the less chance of contamination. Even in laboratory conditions I managed to contaminate insect cell culture suspensions a few times, though they are slower growing and more susceptible than yeast.
  13. PeterC1525230181

    mixing not needed in fermentation vessel?

    Just be wary about using bleach. While it'll satisfactorily deal to any bacteria etc on the spoon you really want to try avoid getting it anywhere near your beer! Most people use a product called starsan. I keep some on hand in a spray bottle as it's very handy for these kind of situations. Thanks. I'll look into that. After a soaking bleach I would have given it (and everything else that was in contact with bleach) a thorough rinse in running hot water. Is that not enough? This DIY at home stuff has me wishing I had pilfered a few things from the research lab where I worked before retiring. If I were doing this at work I could have started with everything autoclaved and thoroughly sterile, water included. The water could be very pure, better than ordinary distilled, and any desired mineral content could be added back in very accurately and easily. Putting it all together could have been in a laminar flow hood which is like a fume hood except that sterile air constantly flows outwards to prevent any contamination falling into containers while you have them open. Then, when faced with the question of stirring, I would have dropped in a sterile, teflon-coated magnetic stir bar and sat the whole FV on top of an automatic stirrer. And, I had access to a variety of temperature controlled rooms and large cabinets to choose from. On the other hand, if anyone had caught me making beer in the lab, it would probably have been a sacking offence.
  14. PeterC1525230181

    mixing not needed in fermentation vessel?

    Now at 48 hours. The level of the dense concentrate at the bottom has very definitely reduced. I was reassured by the comments above and will leave it alone. I guess with yeast sitting directly on top of the dense layer, that layer will slowly go down as sugar diffuses up and gets fermented, reducing density and letting off gas. Above the dense layer the evolved gas is doing some stirring but not within the dense layer. Nonetheless, it does just feel wrong to rely on diffusion. I think next time I will make sure I have bleached a long handled spoon and will try giving things a bit of a stir when about half the water is in before tipping in the rest. Thanks, all.
  15. Hi, First post and I have just started my second brew ever (not counting an undergraduate microbiology practice class in 1983 and occasional suspension cultures of insect cells and bacteria but not yeast in a research lab). I managed to do the amber ale kit that came with the craft kit without anything going wrong. I did stir up the ingredients in the fermentation vessel since that seemed an obvious thing to do before adding the yeast. Now, for my second attempt, I am doing the 'Bird of Prey Amber Lager' recipe of the month. The recipe said "...Add the contents of the Bewitched Amber Ale to the FV. Fill the FV with cold water to the 10 litre mark - no need to stir..." So, I didn't stir - one less thing to do that might risk introducing an infection. Now, after 24 hours, there is fermentation happening - foam, bubbles visible - looks to be going well except that the very dense concentrate from the can is sitting as a distinct layer on the bottom. It is hard to resist the temptation to open the lid and stir it in. Will that slowly get chewed up by the yeast and mix in/disappear?