Homebrew Thread

If you're really desperate you can drink it straight out of the FV. It will be 'green' and uncarbonated. So, it's best to give it at least 4 or 5 days to start to mellow and gas up, 10 days is better. Your stronger speciality beers such as Russian Imperial stout need at least 6 months in a bottle, preferably a year (I've never got to the 1 year stage).

Usually the brew is reaching peak condition just as you pour the last couple of pints. Therefore you need to start the next brew just as you keg/bottle the previous one. I do about 17 gallons a month on 2 brewdays.
Cheers, I've decanted into a barrel, with a little added sugar. I'll give it a week and see how it's going.

Edited to add. Just received an IPA kit, I'll start that off tomorrow. Timing seems to be the key. Thanks for the tip
 
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I've searched online for, but can't find, a device which I heard about elsewhere, in which bottles are stored upside down with the device in place of a bottle cap, and allow the sediment to gather in a separate chamber; I don't like sediment in my booze, but seem to be getting a lot. I believe the device was invented in Australia. Anyone know if it's available in the UK?
 
I've searched online for, but can't find, a device which I heard about elsewhere, in which bottles are stored upside down with the device in place of a bottle cap, and allow the sediment to gather in a separate chamber; I don't like sediment in my booze, but seem to be getting a lot. I believe the device was invented in Australia. Anyone know if it's available in the UK?
Sounds like ‘degorgement’, used in Champagne manufacturing. A plastic bung is placed in the neck and when the wine has achieved sufficient carbonation and sediment collected, the bung is released (most spectacularly, with the back of a large knife/parang). The remaining vino is then recorked, wired and capped.
Or you could do what everyone did before: decant. Massive Belgian ales into an earthenware pot, claret into a decanter, or fizz into a jug.
Showing your guests where your booze comes from is a bit arriviste.
 
Of my four brews concocted during the past four months, the first (barley wine) is unopenable, as the huge fizz immediately lifts the crud at the bottom of the bottle and mixes into the ale - must find a way of opening the bottles without that happening, but both of the two I've carefully turned the cap on have done that; maybe release a sizeable amount of gas then rescrew the top? Experimenting.

The third and fourth look good, but I haven't opened yet. The second, which has been cooling for three months now, is 'Harvest Festival', and delicious:
1.jpg
 
Of my four brews concocted during the past four months, the first (barley wine) is unopenable, as the huge fizz immediately lifts the crud at the bottom of the bottle and mixes into the ale - must find a way of opening the bottles without that happening, but both of the two I've carefully turned the cap on have done that; maybe release a sizeable amount of gas then rescrew the top? Experimenting.

The third and fourth look good, but I haven't opened yet. The second, which has been cooling for three months now, is 'Harvest Festival', and delicious:
View attachment 486865
That’s a fine looking ale.
I see you have read my post above. You have options and the easiest is to not care - cloudy ale is fine. Become a hipster and bore on about how finings are killing the planet. Or serve in a tankard.
Keeping beer in a fridge is American and wrong. But a quick, sharp chill can help sediment stay in place.
The most painful is: give it time. Unless it’s about 4% abv, almost all beer is better for leaving it for a bit.
 

vinniethemanxcat

On ROPS
On ROPs
Of my four brews concocted during the past four months, the first (barley wine) is unopenable, as the huge fizz immediately lifts the crud at the bottom of the bottle and mixes into the ale - must find a way of opening the bottles without that happening, but both of the two I've carefully turned the cap on have done that; maybe release a sizeable amount of gas then rescrew the top? Experimenting.

The third and fourth look good, but I haven't opened yet. The second, which has been cooling for three months now, is 'Harvest Festival', and delicious:
View attachment 486865

How about taking a bottle, chill it well in the fridge, then decant the ale into a clean bottle, leaving the crud behind, then leave to settle.

Almost a methode champenoise........ if it works do it to the rest.
 
How about taking a bottle, chill it well in the fridge, then decant the ale into a clean bottle, leaving the crud behind, then leave to settle.

Almost a methode champenoise........ if it works do it to the rest.
I might try putting a bottle upright in the freezer for a while before opening. Pity to waste it.

@RangdoOfArg : 'cloudy ale is fine...' but it's not just a bit cloudy; great floes of gunge rise to mix with everything else; there was either far too much sugar in the mix or I've done something else horribly wrong. Learning all the time.

(Edit: I note that bugger @Brotherton Lad's sniggering in the background...)
 
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I might try putting a bottle upright in the freezer for a while before opening. Pity to waste it.

@RangdoOfArg : 'cloudy ale is fine...' but it's not just a bit cloudy; great floes of gunge rise to mix with everything else; there was either far too much sugar in the mix or I've done something else horribly wrong. Learning all the time.

(Edit: I note that bugger @Brotherton Lad's sniggering in the background...)
Sounds like it is still brewing rather than merely conditioning. It's easy to get confused with sugar quantities. For example, adding some sugar to the barrel, having syphoned the brew from the fermentation bin, to leave dead yeast behind (for a top fermenting ale yeast, not a lager yeast) in anticipation of bottling. Then priming the bottles having forgotten you primed the barrel already.
 
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Sounds like it is still brewing rather than merely conditioning. It's easy to get confused with sugar quantities. For example, adding some sugar to the barrel, having syphoned the brew from the fermentation bin, to leave dead yeast behind (for a top fermenting ale yeast, not a lager yeast) in anticipation of bottling. Then priming the bottles having forgotten you primed the barrel already.
You may be right, although it's been out in the garage for .... four months now. I'm inclined to think that there's just far too much CO2 in it; could it have been bottled too early? Didn't think so at the time; no bubbles at all then. Must just pay more attention to everything next time.
 
You may be right, although it's been out in the garage for .... four months now. I'm inclined to think that there's just far too much CO2 in it; could it have been bottled too early? Didn't think so at the time; no bubbles at all then. Must just pay more attention to everything next time.
Bubbles can be deceptive. A hydrometer is very useful but I found that final gravity before barrelling or bottling wasn't always close to expectations (what the kit instructions said). Many times I would syphon out the brew to the pressure barrel and look in wonder at the activity in the dregs. Amidst the lees, a mud of supposedly dead yeast there were plenty of bubbles. I did think about doing something with it.

In a different thread, @Brotherton Lad, possibly the "Show us your barnets" one where he was enjoying supping ale in his hammock, he mentioned an ale being overly fizzy and decided to return the contents of the bottles to a vessel to brew out. Interested to learn how that turns out but in principle, as long as the brew kit is clean it should work. I think he was maybe going to add some hops later but it's not necessary and is extra expense unless you want to add bitterness and aroma.

It has been a few years but I have the basic gear to hand and just need to sort it out. I want to brew the kits I have to get back in to it before trying anything more adventurous.

One thing that affects final gravity is sugar type. I moved off of normal cane sugar to prepacked spray dried malt and dextrose blends such as offered by Muntons. Fantastic stuff but getting pricey last time I looked. The spraymalt & dextrose mix seemed to give a more satisfying beer, with less acidity, not by pH but less acidity in the stomach. Also a much clearer head the day after. I seem to recall that the potential abv was slightly less than with cane sugar. Personally I prefer flavour over maximum potential abv.

I have some brewing sugar to try which was no more expensive than cane sugar but may have different qualities.
 
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Bubbles can be deceptive. A hydrometer is very useful but I found that final gravity before barrelling or bottling wasn't always close to expectations (what the kit instructions said). Many times I would syphon out the brew to the pressure barrel and look in wonder at the activity in the dregs. Amidst the lees, a mud of supposedly dead yeast there were plenty of bubbles. I did think about doing something with it.

In a different thread, @Brotherton Lad, possibly the "Show us your barnets" one where he was enjoying supping ale in his hammock, he mentioned an ale being overly fizzy and decided to return the contents of the bottles to a vessel to brew out. Interested to learn how that turns out but in principle, as long as the brew kit is clean it should work. I think he was maybe going to add some hops later but it's not necessary and is extra expense unless you want to add bitterness and aroma.

It has been a few years but I have the basic gear to hand and just need to sort it out. I want to brew the kits I have to get back in to it before trying anything more adventurous.

One thing that affects final gravity is sugar type. I moved off of normal cane sugar to prepacked spray dried malt and dextrose bends such as offered by Muntons. Fantastic stuff but getting pricey last time I looked. The spraymalt & dextrose mix seemed to give a more satisfying beer, with less acidity, not by pH but less acidity in the stomach. Also a much clearer head the day after. I seem to recall that the potential abv was slightly less than with cane sugar. Personally I prefer flavour over maximum potential abv.

I have some brewing sugar to try which was no more expensive than cane sugar but may have different qualities.
Good pointers there. Most of my supposed expertise from forty years ago has been arrogantly forgotten, and I've got to get back onto the rails on this. I'm thinking of doing a mead next (got lots of honey and why not?) I'll be watching many Tennessee burblers on Youtube for a while.
 
Good pointers there. Most of my supposed expertise from forty years ago has been arrogantly forgotten, and I've got to get back onto the rails on this. I'm thinking of doing a mead next (got lots of honey and why not?) I'll be watching many Tennessee burblers on Youtube for a while.
I dipped my toes in to home brew in the early 90s but was away and lost a brew. Started again mid 00s when I found much better kits and got better results. Visiting breweries was interesting. Some were more informative than others. Some mead is nice but I'm not sure I could drink a lot of it. An ale with honey though can be very nice. Fullers Honey Dew? Never tried adding honey as part of the sugar budget.
 
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I hear you, bro (feckit, I've been properganderised).
Diagnosed as Diabetic T2 a week or so ago, I've been wondering what to do with all that honey out in the back room, but it turns out that I can keep blood glucose levels to limit fairly well - and even a jug of homebrew isn't out of my grasp. So, I thought it might do well as booze rather than coffee mug constituent, and I'll be testing a recipe shortly. Testing strip at the high port.
 
I hear you, bro (feckit, I've been properganderised).
Diagnosed as Diabetic T2 a week or so ago, I've been wondering what to do with all that honey out in the back room, but it turns out that I can keep blood glucose levels to limit fairly well - and even a jug of homebrew isn't out of my grasp. So, I thought it might do well as booze rather than coffee mug constituent, and I'll be testing a recipe shortly. Testing strip at the high port.
Cider is worse for diabetics due to sugar content or so I was told. Honey is just another sugar but best defer to the diabetics thread for info. I know you are aware of the thread but I'll link it for others https://www.arrse.co.uk/community/threads/type-2-diabetes.298290/page-7
Have you access to fish, bacon or other meat? Wondering about salt and honey curing it before smoking. If it turns out to be good gear you could sell or barter it. Honey shampoo seems to be a thing. Feckin weird thing if you ask me. Honey has antibacterial qualities.
 
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As others have said lets have a Homebrew Thread, so here it is!!

Used to do homebrew about 15yrs ago but not since.
Do Boots still do brew kits?

If not where's the best place to buy from, either in Surrey/Sussex or SW London or Online?
Nothing on their website site....

Wilko's have some OK stuff...



Or try here...

 

dontenn

War Hero
I find making beer far too technical, get my mash to around 20% then stick it my still, presto vodka at 98% abv and water to get it down to around 40% then add flavourings for whiskey or gin or just plain vodka. I have not purchased spirits for 4 years, easier than beer. Making a good beer is a hell of a skill, too much for me.
You can purchase any flavours you wish.
 

Brotherton Lad

LE
Kit Reviewer
Bubbles can be deceptive. A hydrometer is very useful but I found that final gravity before barrelling or bottling wasn't always close to expectations (what the kit instructions said). Many times I would syphon out the brew to the pressure barrel and look in wonder at the activity in the dregs. Amidst the lees, a mud of supposedly dead yeast there were plenty of bubbles. I did think about doing something with it.

In a different thread, @Brotherton Lad, possibly the "Show us your barnets" one where he was enjoying supping ale in his hammock, he mentioned an ale being overly fizzy and decided to return the contents of the bottles to a vessel to brew out. Interested to learn how that turns out but in principle, as long as the brew kit is clean it should work. I think he was maybe going to add some hops later but it's not necessary and is extra expense unless you want to add bitterness and aroma.

It has been a few years but I have the basic gear to hand and just need to sort it out. I want to brew the kits I have to get back in to it before trying anything more adventurous.

One thing that affects final gravity is sugar type. I moved off of normal cane sugar to prepacked spray dried malt and dextrose blends such as offered by Muntons. Fantastic stuff but getting pricey last time I looked. The spraymalt & dextrose mix seemed to give a more satisfying beer, with less acidity, not by pH but less acidity in the stomach. Also a much clearer head the day after. I seem to recall that the potential abv was slightly less than with cane sugar. Personally I prefer flavour over maximum potential abv.

I have some brewing sugar to try which was no more expensive than cane sugar but may have different qualities.
I rarely bottle beer but rather keg it. That particular one I'd overdone the gas (from a pub canister). In the end I poured it into a gallon jug and let it settle for a few minutes.

Nor do I use any sugars, simply brewing from the grain.
 
I find making beer far too technical, get my mash to around 20% then stick it my still, presto vodka at 98% abv and water to get it down to around 40% then add flavourings for whiskey or gin or just plain vodka. I have not purchased spirits for 4 years, easier than beer. Making a good beer is a hell of a skill, too much for me.
You can purchase any flavours you wish.
This is you, isn’t it?
69F310A4-A19D-4C48-8B71-170BF9DDBE5E.jpeg
 

Dr Death

War Hero
Just brewed Pints in a Bag.
Good alcohol level, tastes bitter but good ABV level.
It will get me happy though.
 
I find making beer far too technical, get my mash to around 20% then stick it my still, presto vodka at 98% abv and water to get it down to around 40% then add flavourings for whiskey or gin or just plain vodka. I have not purchased spirits for 4 years, easier than beer. Making a good beer is a hell of a skill, too much for me.
You can purchase any flavours you wish.
If you are producing at 98%ABV your are vacuum distilling. Producing grain neutral, most produce at between 94 and 95%ABV due to alcohol being azeotropic at this strength. ;)
 

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