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  1. #11
    Connoisseur
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    Jan 2007
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    Re: My Bitters Project and Brew Schedule

    Right. Melomel is mead with add'l fruit. It'll age for at least a year before I drink it, and probably won't peak for a few years.

    For the record, after my dog's death, I haven't been able to bring myself to brew (he was always around when I was brewing, and got homemade dog biscuits from my spent grains), so no beers have been made. The berry melomel is in the secondary fermenter, and I haven't gotten to the peach-ginger mel.

    The bitters are outstanding, and go into most any whiskey cocktail I make.

  2. #12
    Enthusiast
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    Re: My Bitters Project and Brew Schedule

    It's hot as hell in TX right now....where are you fermenting?

  3. #13
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    Jan 2007
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    Re: My Bitters Project and Brew Schedule

    Well, as I said, I'm not making any beer. Wine yeast is pretty tolerant of temperature variation, and it wasn't that warm in my house when primary fermentation was going on. If I make some beer soon, I'll be fermenting in the fermenting fridge I have in my garage. I override the thermostat, so I can keep the temp. anywhere between well below freezing and about 80 degrees.

  4. #14
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    Sep 2006
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    Re: My Bitters Project and Brew Schedule

    Quote Originally Posted by TBoner View Post
    Well, as I said, I'm not making any beer. Wine yeast is pretty tolerant of temperature variation, and it wasn't that warm in my house when primary fermentation was going on. If I make some beer soon, I'll be fermenting in the fermenting fridge I have in my garage. I override the thermostat, so I can keep the temp. anywhere between well below freezing and about 80 degrees.
    I am going to home brew and plan on a Fermintation fridge...how do you "over ride" the thermostate?

    thanks, Russellc

  5. #15
    Apprentice
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
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    43

    Re: My Bitters Project and Brew Schedule

    Quote Originally Posted by TBoner View Post
    Right. Melomel is mead with add'l fruit. It'll age for at least a year before I drink it, and probably won't peak for a few years.

    For the record, after my dog's death, I haven't been able to bring myself to brew (he was always around when I was brewing, and got homemade dog biscuits from my spent grains), so no beers have been made. The berry melomel is in the secondary fermenter, and I haven't gotten to the peach-ginger mel.

    The bitters are outstanding, and go into most any whiskey cocktail I make.
    I went through a similar difficulty after I lost my old yellow cat, who was ALWAYS part of the Bar-B- Que process....just wasnt the same for a while. I cooked out with that cat for 20 years!

  6. #16
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    Jan 2007
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    994

    Re: My Bitters Project and Brew Schedule

    Russell,

    You can buy a temperature controller, essentially an external thermostat with a thermometer probe inside your fridge. The most popular ones are from Johnson Controls and run about $60.
    One piece of advice: buy a new fridge for your fermentation fridge. Low-end is fine. Basically, new fridges are so much more energy-efficient than the old, cheap (or free) ones you pick up off of friends, relatives, etc., that the cost savings on electricity pays for a new (cheap) fridge inside of a year.
    I'm sure I'll get around to brewing again soon. It's odd. I don't think consciously about my dog when I'm making excuses as to why I can't brew on a given day, but the reality is, I love brewing and normally look for excuses to brew beer even when I've got 20 or more gallons on hand. I just miss my friend.

  7. #17
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    Re: My Bitters Project and Brew Schedule

    I'd also go with an upright, in case you ever want to get a conical fermenter. I've got one of the mini-brew systems I picked up off of craigslist for a song.

    You don't have to have a fermentation fridge, an igloo 70qt cooler and a bag of ice will keep the temps in the 60's where the yeast is happy. That's what I'm doing now, a lot cheaper but not as convient as 'set it and forget it'.

    I'm about to do a hard cider for october.

  8. #18
    Connoisseur
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    Jan 2007
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    994

    Re: My Bitters Project and Brew Schedule

    A couple of updates:

    First, I made some homemade orange bitters, and they came out great. I like them better than the regular bitters I made (which are quite nice).

    Second, I have brewed each of the last two Saturdays. Last week I made an Oatmeal Stout, and yesterday I brewed a Belgian-Style Wit. Both are to be kegged and served for my 30th birthday, which is less than a month away.

    The melomel I made is now aging and awaiting oaking before bottling (probably in 6-9 months).

    I have a cider and a cyser set to go. I will make both of them this week.

    It feels good to be brewing again, and I look forward to enjoying the fruits of my labor. In the meantime, the run of big Belgians (saison, tripel, dubbel, strong dark) I did last winter is almost gone. I have half of the oaked strong dark (with raisins and brandy) left, but just a few bottles of the others. Nearly homebrew-free! Say it ain't so!

 

 

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