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Home brewing kits ....

Discussion in 'La Cuisine' started by Aliboy, 23 Jun 2010.

  1. Mrs Seabiscuit

    This cake is not a lie.

    Joined: 21 Sep 2008

    Posts: 4,222

    Location: somewhere out there!

    Huh:confused:
     
  2. Punt

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 17 Nov 2003

    Posts: 1,803

    Location: Gateshead

    Hi

    Do the different colour DMEs (and I suppose LMEs too) have different tastes or is it an aesthetic thing just for the colour?

    Cheers!
     
  3. Squid

    Hitman

    Joined: 19 Jan 2011

    Posts: 658

    Well Liquid Malt extract or (CBW) Definatly has alot different between tastes and colours. Most use a a 2-row base malt and then the rest is the desired grain, to give different flavour profiles. I would assume the same in DMEs as darker colours would come form darker malts toasted / caramel / coffee / malty notes.

    When using a kit and wanting to not mess with flavour profile it i use extra light DME. just as feel better than 100% sugar.

    Just recently moved over to briess CBW
     
  4. Punt

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 17 Nov 2003

    Posts: 1,803

    Location: Gateshead

    Sampled my Hopped APA...

    Well, still sampling :rolleyes:

    It's a Coopers Australian Pale Ale kit dry hopped with 50g of Cascade.

    Only a week old but wanted to check it's ok. And I must say it's great.

    It's better than most of the similar type of ales I drink in my local and by all accounts, they have a good rep for that sort of thing!

    I'll write up a review of this once it's conditioned a little more. Off on my hols so that's perfect for keeping my mits off it ;)
     
  5. Mark A

    Capodecina

    Joined: 19 May 2005

    Posts: 18,015

    Location: Lancashire

    Hmm, when I was saying my Wherry hadn't carbonated properly, I think it might be that my capper isnt putting the caps on properly.

    I just opened one of the swing top bottles and nearly released a chocolate hostage! :eek: Beer everywhere...
     
  6. dannyjo22

    Caporegime

    Joined: 9 May 2005

    Posts: 30,814

    Location: Cambridge

    Mark try the tapered san miguel glasses. My wife got me a couple of them and my god to the drinks 'fizz' when you pour into them. You get a good long lasting head on any drink. I have to literally pour as slow as possible. I noticed the effect of these glasses when a mate came over and I got a normal zero head drink from the same batch in a normal pint glass and he got what seemed to be completely different amounts of fizz and head.....

    Like this glass..

    http://www.amazon.co.uk/San-Miguel-...1371845236&sr=8-1&keywords=san+miguel+glasses
     
  7. Squid

    Hitman

    Joined: 19 Jan 2011

    Posts: 658

    Ikea inspired cider.....
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  8. seabiscuit

    OcUK Staff

    Joined: 12 Jan 2009

    Posts: 2,269

    Location: OcUK HQ

    Well we've given both of the Bulldog Brews kits a fair while conditioning, but have to say we've not been very impressed with either. The IPA isn't particularly bitter or hoppy. It's pale, so fair enough there. Both kits have got that kit twang that I wouldn't expect in a premium kit.
    Would be interested to hear how other people get on with them though.
     
  9. hamesy

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 22 Nov 2007

    Posts: 1,622

    Location: Staffordshire

    Hey guys, I've just finished my latest brew and looking to start another one. At the moment, I'm using off the shelf sugar from the supermarket and the yeast that comes with the kits. Would I see any benefit from using brewing sugar and a different yeast?
     
  10. Punt

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 17 Nov 2003

    Posts: 1,803

    Location: Gateshead

    @hamesy

    I'm a big fan of using DME instead of sugar. You get a better tasting beer with a nicer mouthfeel and better head (IMO).

    Which kit you using? I generally just use Coopers and find their yeast very good, packs down well and can handle a wide range of temps.
     
  11. hamesy

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 22 Nov 2007

    Posts: 1,622

    Location: Staffordshire

    At the moment I'm a big fan of the Youngs kits. My last one was the harvest bitter.
     
  12. Squid

    Hitman

    Joined: 19 Jan 2011

    Posts: 658

    Try a Coopers beer enhancer. They are available in two types, enhancer 1 is more for lighter brews, and enhancer 2 for the darker, where a maltier taste is wanted. or make your own (cheaper) 40/60 mix with extra light Spraymalt and brewing sugar
     
  13. Squid

    Hitman

    Joined: 19 Jan 2011

    Posts: 658

    The Wilkinson kits are made by Muntons and are good they go on sale for as little as £10 some times
     
  14. Mark A

    Capodecina

    Joined: 19 May 2005

    Posts: 18,015

    Location: Lancashire

    Thanks for the feedback. That's a shame as they sounded like they would be really good ones :(.

    i'll be putting this English ale premium kit I got from Wilko in their half price sale soon. From some of the reviews it seems it is similar to the Wherry, so hopefully they are right. Just need to wait for the weather to turn as its been like 24-28c in my house recently.
     
  15. Liverpool-Lad

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 1,519

    Location: Liverpool - UK.

    Finished cidery brew #2 in gallon demi john.

    Basic recipe as follows:

    Apple Juice (4l or so) - Asda concentrate worked fine for brew #1
    Honey (4-500g)
    2 cooking apples peeled and blended
    Small strong cup of tea
    Cider Yeast

    Brews to about 8%

    [​IMG]
     
  16. caff

    Mobster

    Joined: 8 Feb 2004

    Posts: 3,530

    Location: London

    That looks fierce but probably deceptively pleasant to drink :D

    I've just started my 3rd brew - this time it's the Wilko 2-can Golden Ale kit. Has some fairly positive reviews. The smell of the mix in the fermenter is great, but the sample I took for the OG is quite cloudy.
     
  17. Liverpool-Lad

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 1,519

    Location: Liverpool - UK.

    :D Its good stuff.

    Brew #2 was as follows for anyone interested.

    Kit needed
    ----------
    demijohn / airlock / cider yeast / syphon / steriliser / nylon straining bag / funnel / blender / small saucepan / spoon

    You can use a hydrometer to measure the original gravity & final gravity to judge strength & see whether fermentation is complete but I havent bothered so far.

    Ingredients
    -----------
    > 4.5l pressed apple juice - not concentrate (I used Tescos the stuff in the fridges).
    > 340g jar of Rainforest honey (Asda) - very dark and rich.
    > 1 cooking apple
    > 1 very strong cup of black tea for tannins made with 1-2 bags & left to stew.

    Method
    -------
    >Sterilise all gear according to instructions and rinse very well.

    >Make tea & leave to stew & cool

    >Melt honey in pan with apple juice over a low heat.

    >Peel & blend up cooking apple with apple juice in a blender to a fine pulp (cooking apple adds acid). Add to demijohn.

    >Pour in tea after removing teabags and add also honey mixture into the demijohn via funnel.

    >Top up volume to 3 litres, do not fill!

    >Wait for mixture to reach room temp and pitch yeast according to instructions.

    >Shake really well to mix yeast in and aerate mixture.

    >Add airlock with some water inside. Fermentation time can vary but the airlock should start moving fairly soon after. After a few days slowly top up juice over the next week so the brew doesnt climb out of the airlock.

    >After around 2 weeks at normal room temperature (low 20s) the apple mash should fall out of the brew and the larger bits stay at the top. The airlock will slow right down to one bubble every few mins.

    >Syphon out with straining bag over end of syphon to avoid picking up the apple mash. Bottle (sterilise these too - Grolsch flip tops work well) & add a dash of juice if you want it fizzy.

    Leave for a month or so (longer the better really) and its good to go. You can drink it straight away but age definitely gives a better flavour. The resulting cider will be pretty dry and sharp - however you can always add a dash of apple juice to the glass and then pour for a sweeter drink.

    The beauty is, you can experiment away with different flavoured juices (as long as 100% concentrate) and the same basics as above.

    Enjoy.
     
    Last edited: 6 Aug 2013
  18. silent

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 18 Dec 2003

    Posts: 2,456

    Location: heybridge, nr maldon, essex

    may have to ditch a brew as the barrel leaked through nuts not being tight. 2 wks, away on hols, with no gas. wherry too.

    is it savable or ditch it?
     
  19. Liverpool-Lad

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 1,519

    Location: Liverpool - UK.

    I used honey as it adds a touch of sweetness and flavour but some folks bang good old table sugar and melt that in!

    You can use pure apple juice however the ABV of course will be lower at around 4.5-5.5% depending on the sugar content.
     
    Last edited: 6 Aug 2013
  20. seabiscuit

    OcUK Staff

    Joined: 12 Jan 2009

    Posts: 2,269

    Location: OcUK HQ

    Silent, I'm sure you can just add some more priming sugar and leave it another week to carbonate.