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Drinking my first homebrew!

I want to thank everyone on here who has helped me through my first brew. I also learned a lot from reading a bunch of the posts on here as well.

I started drinking my first batch and…it is GREAT! With my un-educated palate I would place it somewhere between a Heineken and Rolling Rock with a dry finish, which is what I love. I was just aiming for a drinkable beverage on my first go and I hit on what tastes really good to me.

I liked it so much that I have another batch in the fermenter as we speak. I duplicated everything so, we shall see.

I ended up getting the Fiz-Giz and I am well pleased with it. I also got 30 of the little CO2 cartridges with it . I bottled my brew into 2 liter bottles which are not so easy to carbonate but, I found a good way to do it. (at least it works for me)

I took one of the bottles that had been fermenting at room temp and, after cooling it in the fridge for many hours, carefully put it into an empty 2 liter leaving all of the junk on the bottom of the first bottle. Then I gassed it and shook it 3 times per instructions and it was decent, but not great. They say on the instructions it is better if left overnight so I did this with the next 2 bottles and…they were right. No matter how slow and careful you pour, you get a 2" head and lots of bubbles.

I am going to leave this next batch in the fermenter a bit longer than the 2.5 weeks I did on this batch, and I will let it finish in the bottles a bit longer too as the longer the bottles were carbonated in the fridge, the better the beer was.

Again, thank you to all who gave such good information and, also to all who have posted on other topics. This is really great. I was just aiming for something cheaper than what I could buy and ended up with something that is much better than I can afford to buy on a regular basis.

Interesting note: When using the Fiz-Giz and doing the 3 time carbonation, you get very large bubbles. When leaving it sit overnight in the fridge, you get more carbonation and smaller bubbles just like in a commercial brew.

I might even start a 3rd batch in my glass carboy so I can rotate brews. Wow, this is fun!

Bill

PS Recipe: (for a 5 gallon batch)

3.3 pounds Pure Malt Extract Golden Light (Briess CBW)
1 pound Malt extract powder (maltoferm 10001)
1 bag Cascade Hp Pellets (Alpha 6.2) Half added at first, the other half for the last 15 minutes of boil.
.388 oz Nottingham Ale yeast
.388 oz. Nottingham American West Coast Ale yeast
3 tablespoons of corn sugar.

Congrats and glad your first batch turned out to your liking. Now you get to enjoy the best part of the job - quality control:)

I am assessing an oktoberfest as we speak…

bottled my first one last night
I totally cannot wait to try it…

:cheers:

There are a few things I don’t get from your post.

1st: Why did you use two different yeast? There was no need in that recipe. They are both neutral flavored yeast. Just one or the other.

2nd: You should up the malt extract you are using. You probably didn’t break 3.25% beer. Unless that is just what you were looking for.

And the beer that you made, in my opinion would be a cream ale. What temp did you ferment at. They really like to be fermented at the lower level of the yeast strain.

[quote=“muddywater_grant”]There are a few things I don’t get from your post.

1st: Why did you use two different yeast? There was no need in that recipe. They are both neutral flavored yeast. Just one or the other.

2nd: You should up the malt extract you are using. You probably didn’t break 3.25% beer. Unless that is just what you were looking for.

And the beer that you made, in my opinion would be a cream ale. What temp did you ferment at. They really like to be fermented at the lower level of the yeast strain.[/quote]

I used 2 different yeasts because when I ordered the malt powder from NB I only ordered one yeast pack. (the West coast ale) After getting some info here I went to the local supply place and obtained the 3.3 pound malt extract and the only yeast they had was the second one mentioned. (I wanted to make sure I had enough.) The computer program that I used (someone from here tipped me off to it, thank you) says it should be between 3.1 and 3.2 so that is great for me. I was making the recipe up as I went. I did not do sg measurements as I did not have a good way to get the wort sample for the initial gravity without a chance of contamination. I figured out a way to do so on my second batch which is in the fermenter as we speak.

The initial was 1.90 (on second batch) which seemed a bit high to me. Was I supposed to add the additional 2 gallons of water to the wort before taking the gravity? I just tested the wort prior to adding it to the fermenter.

Temp was pretty constant at 68 Degrees F. I placed a liquid crystal thermometer on the side of the fermenter and can read it easily at any time. (tape)

I am just thrilled that it is not only just drinkable, it is very good to my tastes. I just hope I can repeat this and it all comes out similar.

Thanks,

Bill

[quote=“Braufessor”]Congrats and glad your first batch turned out to your liking. Now you get to enjoy the best part of the job - quality control:)

I am assessing an oktoberfest as we speak…[/quote]

Thank you very much. Yes, duplicating it might be a little hard to do…we will see. I wrote down everything and kept track of everything but…still some variables out there.

Bill

yep - need to add the water before doing the gravity…Also needs to be mixed well. With extract and putting in water at the end, it is really easy not to mix it well and you get weird/inaccurate gravity readings. Won’t affect the taste of your beer in anyway, just makes the reading seem strange.

Also, using extract - you should be able to calculate the OG easily. If you use a set amt. of extract and finish with exactly 5 gallons, there is no possible way you can be “off” on your projected gravity.

[quote=“Braufessor”]yep - need to add the water before doing the gravity…Also needs to be mixed well. With extract and putting in water at the end, it is really easy not to mix it well and you get weird/inaccurate gravity readings. Won’t affect the taste of your beer in anyway, just makes the reading seem strange.

Also, using extract - you should be able to calculate the OG easily. If you use a set amt. of extract and finish with exactly 5 gallons, there is no possible way you can be “off” on your projected gravity.[/quote]

Opps, thank you, that explains the high reading then. Oh well, live and learn. I believe it is close to what the program predicted but, I will do it the correct way on my 3rd batch.

Funny, 5 gallons of beer does not go as far as it used to…

Bill

I package of dry yeast is more than enough that beer.

You could have brewed a beer almost probably twice as large with one package of dry.

Check out mr malty yeast calculator. If will give you the proper pitch rate.

[quote=“muddywater_grant”]I package of dry yeast is more than enough that beer.

You could have brewed a beer almost probably twice as large with one package of dry.

Check out mr malty yeast calculator. If will give you the proper pitch rate.[/quote]

Thank you very much, I will do that now.

Bill

Assuming you had 3 gallons at 1.090, you had (90 x 3 = 270) total gravity points. So then if you added 2 gallons of water, you’re dividing that 270 points out over 5 gallons.

Your original gravity would have then been (270/5 = 54) or 1.054.

[quote=“El Capitan”]Assuming you had 3 gallons at 1.090, you had (90 x 3 = 270) total gravity points. So then if you added 2 gallons of water, you’re dividing that 270 points out over 5 gallons.

Your original gravity would have then been (270/5 = 54) or 1.054.[/quote]

Excellent, thanks. I wrote that incorrectly it was not 1.90 but 1.090 like you said. This will give me some idea as the water I added was very close to your estimate. (possibly .25 gal. more water)

I can’t believe I made such a stupid mistake but…hey…as long as the ale/beer is good and drinkable…I am happy.

Thank you so much for taking the time to do these calculations for me. I really do appreciate it.

Bill

They should teach brewers math in middle school… I guess they do, but not in practical terms! 8)

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