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first time brewing

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
Wow I didnt realize how much was involved. I went to a friends house and helped him brew a 5 gallon batch of beer. It was a clone of Moose Drool which I've never had but is a brown ale. He does all grain brewing so we started with measuring out the malts and crushing them and went all the to putting it in the fermentation bucket. It was pretty cool to see the whole process and I cant wait to do it again. It helps a lot to have a friend that knows what he is doing and has all the stuff to do it, I think it would be too overwhelming to take that on myself. While I was there he had a Vienna style ale that was AWSOME and a double IPA which was good to but I'm not a big fan of IPA's in general. Cant wait till its ready so I can try it.
post #2 of 17
if u got a buddy that knows what he is doing than it wouldnt be to bad.. I dont do the all grain brewing yet, i still use malt extract and kits that have everything i need. It really isnt that bad.. they key is to sanitize sanitize sanitize... as long as everything is clean everything else is simple
post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 
you're right, I would not want to jump into all grain by myself. I was going to start out with kit brewing but since he has everything I'm just going to brew with him for a while. He said he started out with kits and extract brewing. Here is what he told me, you can go to the store and buy a box of brownie mix or you could make them from scratch with flour and cocoa. The end result is the same, a pan of really good homemade brownies. You just get a little more satisfaction out of doing it from scratch and you can play around with the recipes a bit after you know what your doing. Plus he says its cheaper per gallon.
post #4 of 17
I have a group of friends that are super into brewing beer, in fact one of them is trying to open a brewery right now.

I have recently been thinking about trying it out because I have the chance to purchase some old gear one of them has because he recently upgraded some stuff.

The outcome is amazing and a great hobby for anyone who enjoys beer.
post #5 of 17
Brewing beer is one of the most addicting hobbies there is. Right up there with smoking meats and sausage making.
I was fortunate enough to learn how to brew almost 20 years ago from 2 really knowledgeable people. One was an award winning Mead/Beer brewer, the other guy was Ken Schawrtz, both from el paso from El Paso. Both of these guys were huge contributors to the brewery website and had several recipes and info on both the Cat's meow and Gambrinus Mug as well as several other forums.
I started back words, learning how to brew by doing All-grain first. Usually, its kits, partial mash then all grain. If you have someone to teach you, or work along side you, you will be much further along.
I've only used a few books all these years, most everything else was info from friends or off the net.
One book for sure is the old stand by, The complete joy of homebrewing by charlie papazian. The other one is a book I received as a gift from a fellow homebrewer but I cannot remember the title. I will have to look for it.
A big yellow book and it had about a dozen different style letter fonts in the title. Maybe someone here will recall which one I'm referring to.

Brewing is like smoking meats. The more you know, the more you want to know, and that leads to more equipment and so on and so on till one day you end up with a small micro brew in your garage LOL.
post #6 of 17
I did 3 mini-mashes before making the jump to AG. If I would have realized that it is easier then it looked, I probably would have just made the jump to AG. The only drawback was all the extra equipment that you need. But, it is definately worth it when you drink it!
post #7 of 17
If I had it to do all over again.
http://www.siebelinstitute.com/
post #8 of 17
Brewing rocks! Jump in and get a batch done! I would suggest starting with the extract recipe/kits at first. For equipment, stay away from bottling IMHO. Get a corny keg, a co2 tank and reg and keg the stuff. I would also suggest glass carboys vs. the buckets if ya can afford them. Better to get what ya want the first time and do it right.
Like said before, sanitize everything often. I keep Iodosan or whatever it's called in a solution in one half of the sink at all times and constantly dip my equipment and hands in it during the brewing and racking stages. Never had a bad batch...
post #9 of 17
You are now in the least favorite stage, waiting. I learned the same way as you. A friend brews all grain and i have brewed probably 15 batches with him as well as several extract based on my own. I hope you can afford a new hobby cause the more you brew the more equipment you want. It's a great hobby!
post #10 of 17
Thread Starter 
Got an email this morning from my friend and he took the first gravity reading yesterday and he said everything is looking great. We are going to keg this instead of bottle it but he has a few growlers so I'll be able take plenty home. He said he didnt want to wait so long to drink it. I volunteered myself to smoke some pork shoulders and ABT's, party at my house with home brew and BBQ!! Cant wait. Wonder if I should run this by the wife or just surprise her? What do you guys thinkicon_mrgreen.gif
post #11 of 17
Howdy,

Welcome to the hobby that is actually an obsession.
I've been brewing for nearly 5 years and recently did a stint as Head Brewer at a local brewery.
I started out getting a Mr. Beer for Xmas but I never used it. I jumped right in to all-grain and skipped bottling for kegs. My latest brew was with 15 of my clubmates. We brewed 60 gallons to be aged in a bourbon barrel.
The hardest part is the waitng. Patience is rewarded and bottling helps give the beer some time.
You have a great source of info in your buddy and don't forget there are plenty of forums out there similar to this one with lots of people to help.
Remember, there are no dumb questions and RDWHAHB!

Cheers,
Bob
post #12 of 17
Thread Starter 
You are right Bob, I asked tons of questions! I really wasnt even sure what the mash or wurt was but I learned a lot. Whats kinda funny is i was good friends with this guy back in high school but had not seen him since. Well 15 years later we hooked up of facebook and its just like old times. We worked out a great trade agreement, I'll smoke all the pulled pork he wants and I can brew as much beer with him that I want.
post #13 of 17
Well that's a win-win!

I love the look that some people give you when you tell them you brew your own beer. That weird "Lassie, where's Timmy?" head twist kind of thing.


Cheers,
Bob
post #14 of 17
Any chance we can see some Brew-View of what ya have going on?
post #15 of 17
www.howtobrew.com

i own this book it is very handy...
post #16 of 17
Indeed!
The past few days I've been making a CO2 tap for minikegs. Follows the basic outline shown here, but I'm using a bike pump and making it low-profile so it'll fit in a beach cooler. And I will definitely be getting a secondary fermenter sometime soon, maybe as soon as my next batch.

Just in case anyone wants a cost concept of the CO2 tap:
Mini CO2 pump, $20
Cobra tap and 3/8" line, $8
3/8" female NPT 'T', $6
3/8" male NPT to 1/2" barb plastic, $1.50
1 foot .25" copper: $1.50
3/8" male to .25" compression, $2.50
Schrader valve and 3/8" adapter, $4

Total cost under $45. Pump of course also works for your bicycle. I bent the 1/4" tubing to make it low-profile, but you can leave it straight and thereby less complicated.
post #17 of 17
Thread Starter 
I may never drink commercial beer again!! Can not believe how good the beer was I brewed with my buddy. He brought 2 kegs to my house yesterday for the game and I smoked some pork shoulders and ABT's. Home brew and pulled pork is the perfect combo!! Cant wait to brew again. I think we are going to do this recipe again and bottle it so I can take it home. He also brought a honey pale ale that was very good. I'm hooked on home brewing!!

hey pit, I'll get some pictures next time I go to his house. He is making a new brewer, the Brewtus 10 that is going to be awesome!! here is what it will look like
http://www.gbrewing.com/
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