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1st batch is on - Deutsche AltBier

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
I'm cooling the hopped wort right now. The whole house smells like a brewery!

My wife, who recommended her sister get me this kit for Xmas, seems to be having second thoughts now icon_mrgreen.gif
post #2 of 21
Cool home made beer, let us know how it progresses
post #3 of 21
Thread Starter 
Progress is slow. The literature says I should expect to see some fermentation activity by now, but at 30 hours after adding yeast it's hardly moving the one-way release valve.

All the conditions specified in the instructions were met, and the bucket is in a dark place at 64 degrees. If there's no movement by the time I return home tonight, I have to call the store and ask whether there's a problem with the yeast.
post #4 of 21
I have home brewed about 50 batches. Sometimes the yeast is slow to start. Did you pitch the yeast in dry, or mix with sanitary warm water first ? I have had to add yeast a second time after getting an inactive pack. Just remember to be sanitary if you have to pitch yeast a second time.
post #5 of 21
Thread Starter 
Pitched it dry. The guy at the shop said that's the better option for this particular recipe.

So now, almost 48 hours in, it's starting to ferment a bit. I moved it to a place a couple degrees warmer, and that seems to be helping.
post #6 of 21
Thread Starter 
6:30am today (Friday), 54 hours after pitching... it's starting to rumble. I can now safely say that, good or bad, at least I'll have something that resembles beer when it's done PDT_Armataz_01_36.gif
post #7 of 21
cool. looking forward to some Beer-view
post #8 of 21
Yeah that yeast is some funny stuff. I just cannot seem to get it down to my level of understanding but I am learning a lot on it. From what I have gathered is that liquid yeast seem to take the longest amount of time to kick in. Dry is usually the quickest especially if you make a starter.

I just brewed up 10 gal yesterday.

Are you going to rack to a secondary?
post #9 of 21
That would be... Brew-View. biggrin.gif
post #10 of 21
Another here that would love to see pictures. This has been something I have thought about doing before, just looks like a blast and I enjoy doing and making everything myself if I can.
post #11 of 21
Thread Starter 
It's a darkish beer so I don't see where a secondary will benefit me on this batch. So long as I'm careful about my siphoning into the bottling bucket I should be fine.

But first it has to stop fermenting. Once it kicked in (about 50 hours after the yeast was pitched), it's just been going strong. I don't foresee bottling until at least Saturday or Sunday.

Meanwhile I'm beginning to look forward to summer and sharing my brew. Don't want to hand out bottles so I'm looking at ways to re-use minikegs. I'm thinking about a mini-CO2 bike pump, a valve, and some HomeDepot pipe fittings for a very low-profile tap that will fit in a cooler.
post #12 of 21
Thread Starter 
Bloggish update: As of last night (Thursday, 9 days after pitching), the ferment seems to have stopped. So either tonight or tomorrow morning I'll check the specific gravity... if it's good I'll rack and bottle.
post #13 of 21
Thread Starter 
Another update: Mon Jan 25 - bottled (finally!)

Now we wait a few weeks and see how it came out :)
post #14 of 21

Definately post a pic.
I brew in my garage. My wife likes the malty smell of the wort but as soon as the hops are added she wrinkles her nose up and she's done! Me, I think it smells wonderful.
What was your FG?

post #15 of 21
Thread Starter 
SG= 48
FG= 01

post #16 of 21
1.001 or 1.010?

.001 would be dry as all get out!
post #17 of 21
Thread Starter 
Started 1.048
Ended 1.001

BTW, I just cracked another bottle. It's darn good. Kudos to those who create these beer kits!
post #18 of 21
Don't drink and post. This is the third time I've attempted this. I keep pressing the "back" button while trying to go from one IE tab to another when I'm grabbing my links!

I've been brewing for 14 years and smoking since my bro bought me a smoker for Christmas. I'll gladly offer brewing advice, but you'll be hard pressed to find me offering advice for smoking!

Liquid vs. dried: Back when I started brewing, the difference was in favor of liquid. Dried yeasts just didn't have the quality to make good beer every time. Shortly after I started brewing the quality of dried yeasts improved dramatically. Now the main difference is that liquid yeast have a greater variety of pure strains, while dried yeasts have the advantage of a lower cost for more cells. The key to a quick start is a higher yeast cell count.


http://www.whitelabs.com/beer/homebrew_information.html:Each vial is equivalent in cell count to a pint starter, or 75-150 billion cells. One vial will usually start fermentation in 5 gallons in 5-15 hours at 70°F. If a faster start is desired, or if initial gravity is over 1.070, we recommend a 1-2 pint starter be made.

Decent info here: http://koehlerbeer.com/2008/05/23/dr...-liquid-yeast/

My recommendation? For specialty beers like an Alt, use liquid w/ a starter. For "common" beers, use dried. The quality that the dried manufacturers are using now is great, there's no reason other than variety not to use dried.

re: racking to secondary: I usually don't. If I'm lagering, I will, but otherwise I give it two or three weeks in the primary, then bottle or keg.

post #19 of 21
Thread Starter 
Started a Red Ale last Monday. The ferment went furiously from Monday night into Tuesday morning, at which point it fizzled. Turns out the yeast is part of a recalled batch. So I added different yeast last night; we'll see tonight or tomorrow morning whether it's any good.

Meanwhile, the Altbier turned out just about perfect! Problem is I'm already down to nine bottles remaining mad.gifPDT_Armataz_01_12.gif Meanwhile, my collection of minikegs is increasing. A Spaten, a DinkelAcker, and a Bitburger sit empty and clean and waiting for the red ale. I tapped a Dab last night. I need to get to a point where I'm turning out a batch per week, and have at least 2 minikegs (preferably 3) available per batch.
post #20 of 21

If it took off well and then settled it's probably just fine. You could have roused it a bit too.
Was it Nottingham? If it was, I've had it do the same thing but a hydo test will be the final answer. It's a fast worker.
Funny how you look around at your beer reserves and know you need to brew more. haha!

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