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  1. G'day Worry Wort, sorry I was a bit slack getting back to you, been a bit busy and not on here, but your question has been answered I see...
  2. G'day Worry Wort, I too use the Real Ale a fair bit and I also brew the dark ale. The real ale I just use 500gm LDM and I have recently started dry hopping with 25gm Citra hops, it makes a beer which I am quite happy with, and contrary to the beliefs of many on here, will rival any all grain beer I have tasted! (of a similar style) I use 500gm of dark dry malt with the can of dark ale, that makes a pretty good beer too, both brewed to 23L and using the supplied yeast. I do add a few other things and try a few other tins too, I have harvested Coopers commercial yeast a couple of times and have just recently started making the original lager with 500gm LDM and dry hopped with 25gm of Citra hops, that makes a reasonable summer drink too, its not really a lager but it is pretty easy drinking. You could use 1kg of malt if you prefer, but I find it is fine with 500gm and keeps the ABV down as well.
  3. Pretty much Kelsey, malting is the premium grade barley, then it goes down in stages from there, I don't remember how many grades there are and it has probably changed since I was on the land, but yes, the malting is top then it goes down to feed grade.
  4. rossm


    ....did you take it out of vodka bottle....
  5. Yeah Otto I know, I had already posted before I realized that I probably should have started a new thread or something but I guess I am not the first bloke to get off track in the wrong thread....sorry. As for suggesting that I might be trying to discourage all grain brewers, no that is certainly not my aim. All that you state in your reply no doubt has credence, and while I will happily drink any beer that is pleasant to drink, I am still to see the big gap between all grain and kit brews that is often boasted by all grain brewers. I think the one thing we all agree on is that good temperature control is paramount in whatever method of beer manufacturing we use. Anyway, I will get off this topic in this thread and let it get back to topic.... Cheers, Ross
  6. Well I'm buggered if I know, people get on here and state that there will be no doubt that the all grain brews will be far superior to kit brews. I don't know if I am doing it all right or the all grain blokes I know are doing it all wrong, but many of the brews I have made and continue to make, are at least equal to any of the brews I have tried from the all grainers. I do nothing very special, just kit, malt and sometimes late hops. I have tried harvested yeast from Coopers commercial Pale Ale which makes a difference to the taste but not the quality of the beer. I have temperature control for both brewing and conditioning which I think is the biggest influence in the quality of the final brew but other than that I am pretty basic. Don't get me wrong, the all grain brews are good and no doubt lend themselves to a larger scope of flavours and styles, but quality? not in my opinion. We have a craft brew outlet here which makes their beer supposedly from locally grown malted barley, while it is Ok I am not over the moon about it and from conversations I have with people it is more a trendy thing than a genuine love of the beer. i.e. it is trendy to be seen there. I am not saying one is better than the other but I do wonder sometimes at the members who categorically state that all grain is far superior to kit beers....each to his own I say.
  7. G'day Cam, I do a dark ale which is pretty good, I simply use a can of Coopers dark ale, 500gms dark dry malt and the kit yeast to 23l at 21 degrees...tastes pretty good to me and it is about mid strength. I have thought about adding a bit of cocoa or something to make it a little more chocolate but so far haven't got that adventurous...
  8. That will make a very good beer with just the kit yeast.....
  9. G'day Muzz, I like the dark ale too and brew a bit of it for winter, I have been substituting the LDM for dark malt 500gm and it is pretty good, I can't remember if if I have brewed it with LDM so I can't give you a comparison...I also brew to 23l, kit yeast and brew at 21c.
  10. Ah, the old bottle bomb...I have had a lot in my early days of brewing, usually the odd one due to, I think unclean bottles ie that is a little bit of something left stuck inside the bottle which got things brewing again after bottling. I did brew in stubbies those days, ones clearly marked "No Refill".... I lived in Alice Springs then and only brewed in the shed, so as you should be able to imagine, there was very little temperature control! I did have one major calamity though, lost about 130 stubbies....some of the older members may have seen my story because I have told it before. I had been at a mates place and we were drinking a brew that his son had made, it was pretty bloody good and we got stuck into it pretty well. I made comment that it was a lot better than most I was making at the time, my mates wife said that he had doubled the priming sugar and that was what made it so much better, i argued with her that it would have been the brewing sugar not the priming sugar but she convinced me that it was the priming sugar so I tried it, no ill effects so I continued the next couple of brews the same. About three or four weeks later the weather started to warm up....then the shit hit the fan!....they started going off one after the other, one would go off and set a row off...it was like a terrorist attack! I stopped doing that then but it prompted me to write this little poem which some of you may have seen also....sorry to hijack your thread JB...I just couldn't resist.... “GIDGEE JACKS’ LAST BEER” © Ross Magnay 12/11/08 Gidgee Jack was quite a drinking man he had been all his life, and it cost him all his money, his station and his wife. So Jack moved to the city, and commenced on council pay, but what he earned in one whole week, he drank in just one day! Now Jack was not a spirits man, he mostly fancied ale, and the pace that he consumed it would turn Ernie Dingo pale! A dozen pints at knock off time, some longnecks for the track, yes he was quite a drinking man, was our mate Gidgee Jack. But mowing grass and raking leaves, would not support his thirst, and Jack was suicidal, (or something even worse!) Then an idea struck him, just like lightning from the blue, “I’ll get myself a flamin’ kit, and make me own homebrew!” So next day in his lunch break, Jack found a brewing shop, “I need a flamin’ home brew kit the biggest one you got!” “I’ve saved a stack of longnecks all cleaned and like brand new,” “just waitin’ home for me to fill with this here flamin’ brew.” That night Jack started brewing with diligence and care, he had brewing kits and Coopers tins, scattered everywhere. but it finally got together, and the brew began to work, Jack sat down with a longneck, and a happy little smirk. Then came the time to bottle, and Jack could wait no more, so with measuring things, and capping things and bottle tops galore, he pored through the instructions, till he found the bit that said, “Six grams of brewing sugar will ensure it holds its head.” Now Jack was not a metric man he never found the need, to measure things too accurate, mostly “miles” or “tons of feed.” And converting grams to ounces, (well he got on top of that.) so he started priming bottles till he nearly filled his flat. He filled them up and capped them off, the way the booklet said, then happy and contented, Jack stumbled off to bed. He dreamed about the finished brew, and two weeks down the track, when he would crack some longnecks, and knock a couple back. A week had passed since bottling day, five days of mowing lawn, and Jack thought, “I feel buggered” as he stretched and gave a yawn. I think I’ll have an hours camp, before I cook some tea, I ‘spose a bloke is not as young, as what I used to be. But as Jack drifted off to sleep, there came a frightening bang, Like gelignite exploding, or a car just had a prang. And then another followed, a bang and then a crack, Jack thought “Well I’ll be buggered, it’s a terrorist attack! Jack’s three o three was underneath the bed that he was in, He hit the floor and grabbed the gun, and shoved the “maggy” in. “I’ll show you bloody ragheads, a thing or two.” he said, he fired two shots out through the door from the cover of his bed. But the firing it intensified and then a rattling run, Jack thought, “The bloody bastards must have a gattling gun!” the bangs and loud explosions, shook the block of flats complete, as a crowd began to gather on the footpath by the street. He fired three shots blindly, they went through the Gyprock wall, “Give up you raghead bastards,” the crowd heard Gidgee call. But Jack was out of ammo, and trapped behind his bed, to contemplate his future, he well could wind up dead! Old Jack was not a coward, a tough old station man, he kept down low behind his bed, to formulate a plan. though the firing still persisted, it was getting less and less, and Jack could sense an ending to this terrorizing mess. He thought, “patience is a virtue, I’ll sit and wait it out,” “They must be low on ammo, I’ll wait till they run out.” and then at last the firing stopped, Jack rushed up to the door, but near reduced to tears, he saw his homebrew on the floor. That really got Jacks’ dander up, brought scarlet to his face, “I never knew that terrorists, were such a lowly race, smash a fella’s beer supply, and then just wreck the joint, then disappear without a trace, I just don’t see the point.” So spirit still unbroken, but a different view on life, Jack rolled his swag, and packed a bag, swore off the grog for life. He set himself to trampin’, back out amongst the bush, away from crazy terrorists, and the hectic city push.
  11. Just bottled my latest brew dry hopped using the chux instead of the mesh ball, seem to have dodged a bullet this time, no sign of infection, i put another brew on straight away and I will hop this one the same and see how i go, I did put this last lot in at about day three which is a bit earlier than I was but I am inclined to think it was the ball, not getting boiled long enough perhaps, I guess there are plenty of places for nasties to hide in the hinge etc.
  12. G'day Bartender, First of all I guess it depends on what you, or anyone else classes as a decent beer, I see recipes with all sorts of additives and partial or full mashes, I see people who obviously know shit loads more about brewing beer than I will ever know or care to know, all I know is that a beer that tastes good, has a nice appearance and mouth feel, head retention and is generally pleasant to drink....is a good beer. As I have said on here before, I am a simple brewer, (No not a simpleton, a simple brewer...) I have never used a hydrometer in twenty odd years of brewing and I wouldn't have a clue how to work out ABV by looking at recipes or readings, but I do make a reasonable beer. My mid strength beer is simply Real Ale, 500gm LDM, 23L kit yeast and brewed at 21C....how do I know it is mid strength you ask, because it doesn't get me pissed....quickly, if I drink full strength beer I can tell fairly early in the session that it is not going to be a good outcome! Recently I have been adding 12-15 gm Citra as a dry hop, apart from an infection problem I am trying to sort out, that makes another version of my brew that I quite like, I haven't tried any other hop additions at this stage, but that will probably happen down the track, my next door neighbor is an all grain brewer and he put me onto the Citra hops because he uses them a fair bit....he makes some pretty good beer too. Dunno if this helps, but at least now you have heard my story....
  13. I do double brews all the time in the winter, my brew fridge is too small to fit it in for cooling, but in the winter the heating is done externally so I can use the bigger one, I only brew kits so I simply double the quantities and use both yeasts, no problems.
  14. Gday James, yeah been over all that, the only thing I can put it down to is something getting in while the lid/ cling film is removed, as for what I am seeing it is the common white skin starting to form on the top of the brew, I have been brewing for over twenty years now and while I have had a few infections over the years, they just seemed to be getting a lot more frequent since I started dry hopping. I am wondering if I should be changing the cling film when I add the hops, I use insulation tape to hold the film in place rather than a rubber ring and when I add the hop ball I have been just lifting the top enough to get the ball in then slipping it back on, maybe it is dragging something back in off the outside of the fermenter that has lodged there during its time in the brew fridge. I will sort it, I just thought someone may have had personal experience, I have had all the theories myself.........thanks anyway... In the early days I used to brew in buckets with just a tea towel or similar over it, no temp. control to speak of and in a shed in Alice Springs, while the beer might not have been as flash as what we strive for now, it was certainly better than VB!.....had very few visible or detectable infections those days, though I have heard that a lot of beer gets infected and nobody even knows it!
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