anybody made beer?

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by strantor, Mar 12, 2012.

  1. strantor

    Thread Starter AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 3, 2010
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    In 2009 I ventured into the hobby of alcohol when I distilled Bud Light, Boones Farm, and some moistened corn meal and made 190proof ethanol out of it. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2iJhl38Xuuw). Nothing since then. Now I have decided to make something worthy of drinking. My sister gave me a Mr. Beer kit for christmas and I made 4 liters of beer. I added some juice from the fruit trees in my back yard so it should be a little stronger than usual beer. Currently it is bottled, waiting 1 week before I drink it. Has anyone else here made beer or wine or spirits?
     
  2. VoodooMojo

    Active Member

    Nov 28, 2009
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    guilty!
    for many years.
    An aunt knew I was into brewing beer so she bought me a Mr Beer kit about six years ago. I did not want to break her heart (I had all the equipment for at least twenty years) by not using it so I brewed up a few batches with it. The kit came with some wort, yeast and hops. They turned out pretty tastey so I am not going to knock Mr Beer. It saves a heck of a lot of cooking time but is pretty limited on distinctful flavor profiles.

    Brew a few with Mr Beer kit and then work your way up to the full process.

    There should be a full service beer/wine equipment/supply house in your area.


    When you get the hang of it (carboys, secondary fermentation, lagering, hydrometers, different hops, grains, sugars) try cloning some popular beers. You can even rooftop grow your own rhizomes and have your own signature taste.

    A favorite book on clone brewing is by Tess and Mark Szamatulski called Clone Brews.
    Most every drinkable beer from around the planet.
    From Bass Ale and Belhaven Ale (my favorite) to Xingu Black Beer and on to Cooper's Best Extra Stout or Sparkling Ale. 150 total in this book.

    With the Mr Beer thing, stay away from the Novacaine recipe, it is deadly!
     
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  3. Markd77

    Senior Member

    Sep 7, 2009
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    Actually I'm just about to bottle 20 litres of IPA (over here that's the standard size for a beer kit).
    In the past I've made all grain beers (takes about 8 hours but the results taste amazing).
     
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  4. VoodooMojo

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    Nov 28, 2009
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    IPA's are among my favorites...you two are making me very, very thirsty!
     
  5. strantor

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    I've been in the beer/wine supply store before. I went there to buy my hydrometer when I was distilling. They had loads of beer supplies that I wasn't interested in at the time.. I am going back soon and talk with them, maybe buy a book, and some different hops & whatnot. I'll just use my mr beer fermenter for now (actually, I have 2 mr beer fermenters, long story) because I've already lost interest int using the Mr Beer little cans of magic mix. I want to get into the science of it.

    What is going to hold me back I think is my lack of taste. I'm a cheap drunk (when I drink). I don't know the difference between a lager and a IPA (taste wise) or the different types of wines or liquors. I know I like Canadian Whiskey and I hate Scotch. I've watched some documentaries on wine making and spirits and the connoisseurs use words like "fruity", "nutty", "tannins", "vanilla", and several others I can't remember. None of these words are words that I would use to describe the different liquors they were sampling, and most of the words, I don't even know. I think I need to go to a beer/liquor/wine tasting class.
     
  6. steveb

    Senior Member

    Jul 3, 2008
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    You remind me of my neighbor. He started this way many years ago. Now his basement looks like a chemistry lab. He has jars of yeasts, and test tubes and microscopes. He has also made his own refrigeration systems and taps with pressurized gas etc. He can talk for hours about all the details, and I'm happy to listen while I taste! He's made over 100 different types of beers and has won many contests with his special brew.

    I've developed a great appreciation for his stuff and he is very generous sharing with friends and neighbors because he's not a big drinker himself. Although, he does drink his fair share out of scientific concerns. :p

    Once you get used to this stuff, you can't go back to bottled retail beer.
     
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  7. t06afre

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    May 11, 2009
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    I have tasted home made beer now and then. But the beer I have tasted has always been somewhat behind the commercial types then it comes to taste
     
  8. maxpower097

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    Feb 20, 2009
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    My brother does it. I personally am gonna try to make strawberry brandy this year.
     
  9. Brownout

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    Jan 10, 2012
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    If by 'stronger', you mean higher alcohol content, that can only be done with the yeast. The content is determined by the amount of alcohol the yeast can bear. Once it gets to a certain point, the yeast dies off and the fermentation process ceases. I've made wine before, and I'd love to try beer. But I want to use the full-grain method.
     
  10. #12

    Expert

    Nov 30, 2010
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    Once upon a time I used oranges to make a sort of wine. I don't drink alcohol, so I gave half of it away and distilled the other half to 165 proof. I just wanted to see if I could do it. A couple of years later the 165 ate its way out through the lids of the Mason jars!

    Note: Don't put anything over 100 proof in Mason jars.
     
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  11. shortbus

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    Thought distilling was a no-no? Though I have built a water cooled still and tried it. Stuff wasn't worth drinking though.
     
  12. #12

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    True. A rank amateur on his first try can make something flammable, but it is NOT tasty.
     
  13. maxpower097

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    Feb 20, 2009
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    As mentioned to raise the alcohol add suger and more yeast. What type of fruit are you adding? I was talking abut my brandy project with a friend that made his own liquor in club fed and he said DO NOT USE Grapefruit, oranges, or any other citrus juices to ferment. He said its the roughest stuff he ever drank. They always tried to get grapes and stuff like that to brew in their thrermoses.
     
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  14. strantor

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    uh oh... it was tummelo(sp?) I think. The people who planted the tree were vietnamese and I guess it's a vietnamese tree. I've never seen this fruit for sale but it looks excatly like a grapefruit, and I eat it like a grapefruit, but it's pale yellow and not at all tart like a grapefruit. we'll see I guess
     
  15. strantor

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    yeah its a no-no. For what I was doing, fuel ethanol, all you have to do is apply for a permit. Since they're pushing this whole alt. energy thing I've heard that everyone who applies gets the permit. I wasn't and wouldn't ever drink anything I distilled without a way to verify no aldehydes in it. I didn't apply for the permit bause I was impatient.
     
  16. maxpower097

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    I thought everyone was allowed to produce 10 gallons of liquor a year? Like everyones allowed to grow 10 tabacco plants.
     
  17. strantor

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    That rings a bell... I'm no internet legal counsel so don't take my word for it but I think you're right.
     
  18. shortbus

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  19. hwy101

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    May 23, 2009
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    so........if you're making hooch to run your car this is legal, yes? no?
     
  20. maxpower097

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    Feb 20, 2009
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    Yes theres actually books dating back to the 40's on how to do it at your public library. If anyone plans on distilling real liquor remember pour out the 1st 10% because that contains methenol and will make you go blind. You also throw out the last 10% because of contaminants and quality control issues. Then proof the 80% left with 1:1 water and your rollin. If you want white lightning drink it clear, if you want real whisky put it in a oak barrel thats charred inside for 3-12 years. The whisky will pull the caramels out of the char and wood turning the white whisky brown, you then have whisky or bourbon etc.. Use fruit instead of corn and suger and you have brandy. I'm about done building my still. Its not traditional, just need to find a 10-20 gallon pyrex pot, I've already got 5ft water cooled pyrex distillers.
     
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