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Thread: Brewing, microbes, and yeast... oh my!

  1. #25
    nealfor's Avatar
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    You'll need to buy extra DME/LME for the starter and then just decant the beer off of and pitch the yeast slurry in the bottom. I would wager you could make a 1 gallon starter and it would probably come out just fine, at least IMHO.

    So yeah, 1lb of DME in 1 gal of h20 (boiled for a bit) would give you the proper wort for a 1 gallon starter.
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  2. #26
    herenorthere's Avatar
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    This reminds me of something I brewed a long time ago, based on a recipe from a Papazian book. I was aiming for a Belgian Grand Cru with a dry finish, since I didn't like malty in those days. According to the notes I wrote at the time, I used 5 lb of extra light dry malt plus 2 3/4 lb of honey. If you haven't used honey before, it ferments completely and without leaving a hot feel in the beer. It's a good way to reduce the maltiness of a recipe (or to boost the alcohol). I used to add a pound to a recipe pretty frequently.

    I started that beer with Wyeast Belgian White yeast and, when the SG was down to 1.035, I added a pack of Glenbrew "Secret Brewers" yeast and some yeast nutrient. That's a dry yeast that has enzymes or something and can yield an extremely dry beer. I wrote that it finished at 1.003, which surprises me a little for being so low, but I remember it being a crisp beer, which went great with the orange peel, coriander seed and that odd Belgian taste. It was one of my best ever and I never tried making it again, even though some people asked me to, because I knew the next batch would have to be a letdown.

    By the way, I never did the yeast starter thing and I'm pretty sure my local homebrew store said it isn't necessary with Wyeast or other liquid yeasts. Also, isn't there a homebrew store in Ft Worth or nearby? Go there instead of ordering and bounce your recipe ideas off the owner or other customers. The money to ship for your ingredients will take you pretty far in search of a local store.
    Bruce in CT

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  3. #27

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    Yeah I was under the impression liquid yeasts usually didn't need a starter either. I made a heller bock with 10lbs of extract, and didn't need a starter for it, and it came out fine. I'll look around for a local place. I think the closest is probably Dallas.

    Edit: I poked around. The "local" places are at least 45 mins away, and don't really have the right stuff I want, nor are their prices any better. For most things, they're actually worse. Also, the shipping would only be $8, which is less than or equal to what I'd spend on gas getting there and back.
    Z polski y dumny
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  4. #28
    rattler's Avatar
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    If you haven't used honey before, it ferments completely and without leaving a hot feel in the beer.
    thats interesting....cause when yah make mead you usually you need to age it for quite awhile to get rid of the hotness, suppose its cause all the malt? or the fact your not fermenting more or less straight sugar? but Bruce is right honey has been used to up the alcohol in beer for centuries.........
    cervid serial killer
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  5. #29

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    Just placed my order, and I ordered a lb of honey as well to throw in there. I've never used honey before either. I realllllly hope this recipe turns out well, cuz I just made it up as I went along, plus suggestions from you guys. My order was a bit more than I was planning on because of the extra DME, honey, bottle caps, a new stopper, and a new hygrometer, since this annoying ex-gf of mine smacked it off the counter last time I brewed.
    Z polski y dumny
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  6. #30
    rattler's Avatar
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    with the honey.....since your not doing a starter........i would wait and maybe add it after things start fermenting well....as i stated earlier unless its heavily processed honey(and being its from a brewing supply store it likely isnt) its actually far from sterile and as far as im concerned boiling honey is a bad thing.......aslong as you have a good fermentation going there is nothing to worry about, the yeast you have in there will quickly out compete anything on the honey.....alot of die hard mead makers dont boil the honey, most just pitch a good sized starter to overwhelm anything on the honey.....
    cervid serial killer
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    I didn't get stimulated but he kept his promise on change, that's about all I got left!
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  7. #31
    herenorthere's Avatar
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    What's wrong with boiling honey? The natural foods crowd would say that boiling destroys honey's enzymes, but honey is just an extra source of some sugar when homebrewing. Maybe it's different when making mead, since honey is the dominant ingredient.
    Bruce in CT

    Madness is something rare in individuals but in groups, parties, peoples, ages it is the rule. Friedrich Nietzsche

  8. #32
    nealfor's Avatar
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    As said before honey or simple sugars are a great way to get your alcohol up while keeping your FG down. I would say you could drop it in right after the flame out, otherwise its going to take a lot of stirring to get it all incorporated into the wort/beer. Honey will give you 35 gravity points per lb / per gallon so you can change your recipe accordingly if you wish.

    I would still encourage making a starter; otherwise you might experience some serious lag time before the yeast start up. Here is Wyeast's take on making a starter: http://www.wyeastlab.com/hb_makingastarter.cfm .

    Boiling honey is a hotly debated topic amongst mead makers. The no boil crowd, me included, say that if you're using good quality local honey boiling will break down the flavor and drive them off. Since I've never boiled honey I can't comment either way, but I don't want to risk losing any flavors in a mead. Like you said, if its just a gravity booster I doubt you would get much honey flavor with the amount you're planning on using.
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