Backyard Aquaponics

Beer, Wine and ..... Cider!
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Author:  Axl [ Mar 8th, '08, 09:54 ]
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Isn't that how they make Apple Jack?

Author:  timmy [ Mar 8th, '08, 10:15 ]
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I've been homebrewing since i was 15 (yes, i know) and i can promise you won't go blind from home distilling unless you did something really really really REALLY stupid. you'd have to be so stupid in fact that it's more likely you'll kill yourself with some other act of stupidity long before you manage to homebrew anything.

it's also worth noting that all commercially brewed alcohols contain some metho, up to 2% some of your cheap and nasty voka. this is because they redistill the heads and tails over again to try extract more profit from each batch. I don't have the link handy but i seem to recall the toxic dose of methonol is around 150ml per day. given that methonol has a much stronger effect on you then ethonol i'm sure you'd pass out long before managing to drink that amount in a batch of homebrew.

i'd avoid using refined sugar btw, unless you want straight rocket fuel that is good to power your car :/ if you've ever noticed that "homebrew smell" that's what using refined sugar does.

Author:  Axl [ Mar 8th, '08, 12:25 ]
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So what do you normally brew?

Author:  timmy [ Mar 8th, '08, 13:30 ]
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malt if you want whiskey, molasses if i want rum. the yeast reacts differently depending on the type of sugars

Author:  steve [ Mar 8th, '08, 13:51 ]
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Axl, didn't say that it couldn't happen ;) is probably quite likely of care is not taken to remove woody material from the mash. but you can follow my logic?

timmy, refined sugar worked just fine, even used shite turbo yeast, just wanted high percentage wash and distilled that to circa 90%. the foul stuff came when we were at the dregs and came in at 72%. wnt be greedy next time.

Whole aim for me was to get as pure an alc. as possible then flavour (naturally) it later

will let axl be the judge when he comes down. have a premium bottle that has been sitting over charred american oak for what must be coming up to a year!

Shhhh VB, i gave you the dud batch.

hahahah, funny that ethanol is an antidote to methanol.

Author:  timmy [ Mar 8th, '08, 15:33 ]
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metho content comes from yeasts metabolising fruit pectins, hence why that cheap bottle of red wine gives you the worst hangover ever.

refined sugar will work alright, but yeasts actually don't like it much, hence the warnings on home brew labels not to add too much sugar. you'll find a much smoother drop comes from non refined sources.

another thing i do to get a nicer spirit is filter out the sediment with my 1 micron filter. most stills actually burn the sediment at the bottom and it produces off flavours. the other way to do it is use a steam bath so you don't burn anything with the hot element.

Author:  Axl [ Mar 8th, '08, 21:58 ]
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Apparantly the bodiy can use ethanol a lot more efficiently then methanol so it will release the methanol intot he blood stream where it can be cleaned out during the dialysis if there is ethanol to replace it. I have only ever brewed beer and cider and have onlty taken a non activ role in distilling (mango schnapps). I don't drink very much spirits so it is a waste of time trying to distill any ;) I can make the cidre strong enough :) just ask J, tommorrow!

Author:  Axl [ Mar 8th, '08, 21:59 ]
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So timmy you don't brew beer? you exclusively distill?

Author:  Stuart Chignell [ Mar 9th, '08, 04:15 ]
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I use to qualify for the "my name is Jamie" option when I lived in Canberra.

Lived in a share house of 4 with lots of friends popping round. I thnk I got upto having around 36 cases under the house maturing at any one time and one or two in the fridge.

Had a mix of longer maturing brown and black beers (12months +, meduim maturing somethings (6monyhs+) and masses of my favourite wheat beer (ready in 2months but excellent after 6).

This year I've been getting back into it and I now have 5 cases of Elder Flower Champagne in the cellar and I'm about to put down a wheat beer and a Rubarb Champagne.

Author:  timmy [ Mar 9th, '08, 06:56 ]
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i'm more into brewing beer right now because i didn't have the space at the unit i was in use my still. also because i invested a fair bit of money into my brewing gear - filter, 2 kegs, gas and taps etc i wanted to make good use of them. I make my own mash from grains because i find it gives me more control, the brew i've got in right now is a white, made with pale grain, oats, orange peel and corriander. you don't have that level of control with kits or liquid malt.

i like the idea of the rhubarb champers. i might need to divide my rhubarb plants again and stock up.

Author:  slane [ Mar 9th, '08, 09:05 ]
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If you want to improve your brewing head over to ... it is to beer as this forum is to aquaponics!

Author:  Rons_Place [ Mar 10th, '08, 04:25 ]
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I've only been brewing since Oct 07.
At present I'm getting a fresh brew weekly (ready in 5 days bottling on the 7th) I do expect this to slow down as the cooler weather sets in.
I have made some really really complex flavoured beers. ( read: taste shite) so have gone back to basics, Cooper draught kit & a kilo brewing sugar.
I am presently testing the different Hop flavours, with the above mentioned kit, I have been dry hopping a couple of days into the ferment with different readily available hops trying to understand the differences in flavours and finding the right hops to suit my tastes.
because of the rate I am brewing my real problem now is that I am running out of space, bottles and keeping the bottled batches separated.

Author:  slane [ Mar 10th, '08, 05:37 ]
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I only have a smallish pot so I can only mash 4kg of grain and even then I do concentrated (1.050) boils.
Drinking a Belgian Pale at the moment. Stout and a Tripel conditioning.
Taking the Tripel to a friends cellar today.
And that means I don't have to brew 'til June when I'm doing an APA.

Ron, at the risk of sounding like stuck record ... sign up with aussiehomebrewer. You'll get lots of good advice.

I hope your not following the kit instructions and brewing at 26C! Try 20C if you are, it will make big difference to the taste of the beer. And always check the date on your kits (coopers put a made date of day/year on the bottom) because old kits taste foul! Don't buy anything made last year now.

Winter is a great time to brew because with a thermostat and heating mat you can keep the beer at the right temperature.


Author:  himzol [ Mar 10th, '08, 06:59 ]
Post subject:  Re: Beer, Wine and ..... Cider!

I do expect this to slow down as the cooler weather sets in.


Don't let winter slow you down, in fact thats when I do most of my brewing.

Largers are just left in the corridor to ferment (use good larger yeast)

Ales are generaly done in spring and Autumn when temeperatures are in the mid teens.

I also have a fermenting fridge which I use during the summer.

As Slane says, keep your temps as low as possible and you won't get any nasty "ester" tastes.

As for K&K you can get some really good results from these, you have to be prepaired to experiment a bit with the sugers you use, try a kilo of dry malt extract with the draught, boil it for about ten minutes before adding to can, or you could just use two cans..

As Samantha says, sign up to aussiehomebrewer and you can get any amount of help. :)


Author:  Rons_Place [ Mar 10th, '08, 15:30 ]
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Thanks for the advice.
I've done a heap of brewing and was doing some complicated brews not liking the end result and thought I should arm myself with knowledge. I've done the Dry malts, Liquid Malts various brew enhancer Malt mixes, a few different kits ect, getting different results and not knowing what was giving which flavour
Being a Vic Bitter drinker normally I was finding the beers I was brewing not to my liking, I don't particular like european style flavoured beers, My parents are german and belong to one of the clubs that have a presence at the Octoberfests and have tried many different commercial beer varities but still prefer VB.
I do all my brews ( except the first) at 20-22c. after pitching the yeast fermentation usually starts in about 8 hours ( bubbling through the air lock) and is completed in about 5 days, check with hydrometer give it another couple of days before bottling.
I have chosen the Coopers Draught Kit and just plain brewing sugar as the control as it gives a fairly plain and clear beer. When I dry hop the end result has a noticeable different flavour which I can put down the hop type.
Once I find out the hops I want to use I will then start experimenting with other ingredients.
My altimate aim is to brew a cheap beer I am happy to binge on.
Most I have brewed so far are drinkable but 2-3 bottles would be the limit, you sure wouldn't want to have a weekend bender on any.

I go to the homebrewandbeer forum and a quick visit to aussiehomebrew I reconized many familar names.


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