From Anonymous of Erie, Pennsylvania on 2/25/2013.
Great beer!! MUST age for maximum taste. One of the first beers I ever brewed in 2003. Have 3 - 22 oz. bottles left, but have drank majority the past few years. AWESOME!!!*****Editor's Comment:Wow. . . .
From BarFly of Canadensis, Pennsylvania on 12/22/2012.
This was my second batch I brewed. I made it with the intent of sharing it with my friends who have helped me develop my brew skills (often with mr beer kits). I vented this with an inch and a half tube . . .
From Scott J of Aurora, Illinois on 10/4/2012.
I REALLY like this barleywine. It has a wonderful flavor. I add the extra brown sugar and get the alcohol to about 11%. I used Makers Mark bourbon in oak chips and put the drained chips in for a couple . . .
Death By Barleywine
From dredog of Tampa, Florida on 2/29/2012.
Excellent recipe, easy to brew, I oaked my first batch, great complex favors, hard to wait for aging, tastes great at any stage...I did put a few bottles away for extended aging...just made second batch...buy . . .
From Nick of Houston, Texas on 11/6/2011.
I had no idea fermentation could be so active.. almost violent. I've brewed a few batches of beer before but this thing is in a different category when it comes to fermentation. I don't see how anyone . . .
From Anonymous of Norfork, Arkansas on 4/22/2011.
this is some amazing brew I added some secret ingredents. my nephew just had a bottle and needless to say his on words I have drank my share of beer but this is some kick ass beer.
Oh sweet death... The Finale
From Richard Wheeler of McMinnville, Oregon on 1/13/2010.
All good things must come to an end... Alas, this past 2009 holiday season saw the final 4 bottles of very well aged Death (bottled November of 2007) enjoyed among friends and family. These last remaining . . .
From Eric Johnson of Seattle, Washington on 5/22/2009.
I am impressed. I made this back in February, waited 3 months and opened a bottle of it today and wow, this is a winner. Of course I added two pounds of light brown sugar for a little added heat. Highly . . .
Do NOT let it boil over.
From Guy of Anza, California on 1/16/2009.
Even a slight boil-over is difficult to clean. However, the finished product is well worth the potential mess. Delicious!
Oh sweet death... The update
From Richard Wheeler of McMinnville, Oregon on 6/27/2008.
About a month after bottling (racked 11/07), I tried a few with friends... The body was thick and "it taste like burning". I was a little worried, needless to say.Well it has been cellaring for 7 months . . .
Great Barleywine Come to those who WAIT!
From Jessie of Las Vegas, Nevada on 1/16/2008.
"This is by far the most amazing beer I have every had in my life", thats what I said after 3 months! I drank all of it by 4 months, or so I thought.9 Months after brewing the Barleywine I found a . . .
puts my dick in the dirt!
From mike petit of cincinnati, Ohio on 1/11/2008.
Oh sweet death...
From R. Wheeler of McMinnville, Oregon on 11/5/2007.
This was by far the most fun I've had brewing. I went big time and added 1# Orange blossom honey and 1# amber Belgian candy sugar, started at OG 1.118!Thanks to all the previous reviewers, I utilized . . .
I agree w/ 'toss the airlock!'
From Paul of Marthas Vineyard, Massachusetts on 10/24/2007.
I generally favor stouts and Belgians.Death has been my favorite since trying Ipswich's Barley Wine. It is VERY strong and tough to wait the 3 months before sampling. I have found using the 8oz. coke bottles . . .
From Dave Banker of Flora, Illinois on 8/7/2007.
I gotta admit, I was sceptical about this one. I let it age 6 months before trying it, and it was fantastic. It definately has a bite, but the taste is really good. This was a most interesting beer to . . .
GREAT Recipe, FUN to Brew, STRONG STUFF!
From John of Lompoc, California on 7/8/2007.
FINALLY got to try one of these after waiting the prescribed three months in the bottle, and WOW! I must have done something right because this is a GREAT drink. I added the honey and boy can you tell. . . .
Loved my Death
From Crkdbk of Woodland Hills Utah, Utah on 5/19/2007.
I think next time i brew a batch of this, I'll separate the wort into two buckets, I had so much blow over - foamed hard for full 24 hours. What do you think of my separation idea? I've now waited the . . .
TOSS THE AIR LOCK!!!
From BB of Naches, Washington on 4/4/2007.
the day after cooking,(s.g.1.110) my primary started erupting. hurky chunks were plugging the air lock every 10 minutes,so I went to a tube into a 1/2 gallon jar with sanitizing solution in bottom.tube . . .
DBBW compares really well with Fishtale's Barley wine
From Patrick DeBurgh of Yelm, Washington on 3/31/2007.
Death by Barleywine was my third batch of homebrew. Fishtale's Leviathan Barley wine is a personal favorite so making my own barleywine at home was a definite to do. Well, it's about 1/2 gone and I couldn't . . .
I need a beginner question answered
From Jessie Angles of Miami, Florida on 1/22/2007.
This is more of a question and not a review cause I havent tried it. After I dry hopped the brew in the secondary fermenter and the bubbling completely stopped I added the yeast given to me in the small . . .
Death by Barleywine
From Nazaire Tetreault of Los Banos, California on 12/27/2006.
I would like to keep this simple. If you can wait 3 months like I did, you will end up with some outstanding, ass kicking beer. I gave one 12 oz bottle to my wife and the evening was a pleasure. Please . . .
Too Much Yeast or Not?
From Paul Tetreault of Los Banos, California on 8/27/2006.
I received the death by barley wine. I did not know the liquid yeast needed to be refridgerated, until after a couple of days. I called you and you said as long as the pack swells up when smacking it . . .
Autumnal Fire Clone
From Dalton of De Forest, Wisconsin on 1/24/2006.
Wow. I live outside of Madison, WI and we have a little brewery here called Capital Brewery. I brewed DBBW in September, bottled it in December, and couldn't wait to try one. After only 17 days in the . . .
Look No Further
From Paul Caval of Marthas Vineyard, Massachusetts on 10/15/2005.
I have been brewing for over twelve years. I am quite fond of the Ipswich Brewery,especially their Barley wine. I decided on Death By Barleywine and after painstakingly waiting for it to finish,I would . . .
Mmm, Mmm Good!!!
From Ed Meyer of Okinawa, Armed Forces Pacific on 4/15/2004.
Worth the wait and the price. My Barley Wine had it's birthday on April 11. 90 days of aging was not too long to wait for the results that I got. WOW! The death part of the name is not a joke. I had . . .
not for the weak (strong beer)
From tedd reesman of ft. lewis/tacoma, Washington on 9/5/2003.
some army buddys of mine and myself made some of this and while we waited for it to age we drank nothing but guiness extra stout to prep are selfs to drink this when it was finily done we knocked of the . . .
From Dan of Sunnyvale, California on 7/7/2003.
There isn't too much to say other than this is an excellent Barleywine! The hardest part is going to be waiting for some of the bottles to age 6 months, 9 months, one year, etc. If you're unsure whether . . .
3/17/2013 -- When or where do you add the Bourbon Soaked Oak Chips????
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Oak chips are added to the secondary fermenter.
12/15/2012 -- I'm looking to buy your Deluxe kit for my son for Christmas, and he'll need a brewpot. What's the advantage to having a spigot? I don't want to buy him junk, and none of us has ever brewed our own beer before. Aside from the brewpot and bottles, what else would he need to get started?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Our Equipment Kits are really quite complete. As you say, a large brewpot is necessay, as well as bottles. A spigot in the brewpot is a "convenience" type of product. It just make the job easier than lifting up a hot, heavy brewpot. A 5 gallon batch of beer weighs more than 40 lbs. Just opening a drain valve (spigot) makes the job easier and safer than muscling it around.No other items (aside from our Kit) are really necessary. We design it that way. Don't forget the BEER ingredients though! We make that convenient as well. Simply figure out what kind of beer you like to drink, and choose an Ingredient Kit from that category (link provided below). They are all brewed in a similar way, so just pick a favorite style of brew and get with it!http://store.homebrewheaven.com/beer-ingredient-recipe-kits-c33.aspx
5/2/2012 -- I am new to this brewing my own beer soda & wine. Your kits only have the brewing tools & not the mixing ingredients right?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Welcome to our hobby/obsession!Yes, we sell the brewing equipment kits (tools) separately from the ingredients for making beer/wine/sodas. The Equipment Kits are a one time purchase, and you can choose the type of beer you like from our Ingredient Kits. We put together about 15 different recipe kits that get you started in the right way. It's a good way to start, and many people "graduate" from using our kits to finding/formulating their own recipes. We feature a huge variety of malts, grains, yeasts, hops etc so the possibilities are endless. Fun stuff!
9/6/2011 -- Are you going to offer the hop goblin kits this year? If so, when will they be available for purchase?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Absolutely! This popular seasonal kit will be available on October 1st! (to brew in time for Halloween)-NOW AVAILABLE!
6/28/2011 -- i have made DBB several times and enjoy it very much. i'm interested in adding something to give it a creamier/more body, like Gunniess. what/how much would you recommend?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Glad to hear you enjoy our Death by Barleywine Kit so much. It's a BIG beer!Even MORE creamier/more body you say? Hmmm. That takes a little doing.First, I would prime your beer with dry malt extract instead of corn sugar. Use about 1.5 cups per 5 gallon batch. That will produce a nice creamy head and fine carbonation bubbles.For more body you can also steep perhaps 4 ounces of flaked barley along with your other grains in the kit. Adds a unique raw barley taste as well.One more trick would be to add 4 to 6 ounces of maltodextrin to the boil. You will get noticably more body that (easy) way as well.Hope this helps, and enjoy!
12/29/2010 -- I've already made a few of your beers and the best one so far was the Death By Barleywine. My wife got me the Diamond Knot IPA kit for x-mas. If I put 1 to 2 lbs of honey during the boil, will I ruin the taste? I like my beer with a little extra heat but I dont want to ruin the DK recipe. I added 2lbs to the DBBW and it was great.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: No you won't ruin the Diamond Knot IPA. I wouldn't (personally) go any more than that amount, however. It's a really good IPA as it is.
10/12/2010 -- I'm planning to brew the Death by Barleywine and saw that you can add up to 2 lbs of either brown sugar or honey to increase alcohol. Could you use raw unrefined sugar instead and if so what do you think it would add to the final taste and should I use 2 lbs or is that a bit much?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Sure, unrefined sugar can be used, but I would tone it down to maybe 1 lb. It's already a very, very strong beer and just fine "right out of the box". It's easy to overdo some things.I would expect that addition would add some to the alcohol "bite" as well as a slight molasses-like flavor.
7/2/2010 -- I have made DBB several times, like it a lot. my wife says it reminds her of Guinness and wants it to have a creamier head like Guinness. first, is there some kind of nitrogen keg kit I can use. second, is there a kit that tastes like DBB, but has lower alcohol so she can drink more than 1 beer?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: It sounds like our Shamrock Stout Kit is one for you! Creamy head, tastes VERY much like Guiness and has lower alcohol. No need for a special nitro tap with this one! Here is a link to that product:http://store.homebrewheaven.com/shamrock-stout-kit-p666.aspx
5/17/2010 -- what is your phone number?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: We can be reached at (425) 355-8865Our toll free order is (800) 850-2739
2/18/2010 -- I have my stout in the primary, just about to transfer to the secondary. I added oats to the boil and am thinking about putting some coffee and a vanilla bean into the secondary. What would be the best way to do this and do you think it would be too much??
Response From Homebrew Heaven: The best way to add coffee is to brew some up, and use that in place of water in your fermenter. If your beer needs a little "topping up" you could still do that.Vanilla is easily added by throwing the whole bean into the seconday fermenter for about 1-2 weeks.All these additions sound good, but it's probably best to just go with one, or at most two, in order to judge the effect for following batches.
1/30/2010 -- I am making DBB. I started the second fermentation on 11/04/09, got distracted by other activities, it's now 01/30/10. is there a problem with waiting so long to bottle?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Absolutely not! Your beer is just getting better. Keep water in the airlock and it will be fin.
12/3/2009 -- I'm planning to brew the Death by Barleywine and saw that you can add either brown sugar or honey to increase alcohol. Is there a taste diffeance between the two? Should this be added during original brewing or after main fermentation has settled or during secondary ferm to reduce vigirous ferment?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Correct. Neither one produces a LOT of flavor, but they will increase that alcohol content. What you will notice is more heat (from the alcohol). Do not expect sweetness from either.The difference between the two is subtle. I would call the brown sugar more of a (dry) molasses flavor and the honey depends more on the type of honey used (wildflower versus clover vs...). I would further say that the differences are more in aroma than in flavor.I would limit either one to no more than about 1 lb per 5 gallons, added to the primary fermentation just after activity has subsided a little.
9/3/2009 -- Is it possible to hop a bock beer more to give it a more balanced taste? and if so which hops would give such a end result? P.S. not a computer savvy guy, e-mail address is my wife cut me some slack on the name.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Yes, it IS possible to add more hops to a bock. Add perhaps 1 oz of a good nobel hop to the boil, such as Hallertaur, Saaz or Tettnanger. Those are traditional "aroma" hops, but will also add some balancing bitterness. Yum!Hah! Are you sure you want your WIFE learning about your beer brewing? Mine woulld just roll her eyes, but...
8/1/2009 -- I just finished my first batch of wheat beer and have transfered it to the primary, it's been about 28 hours and i've only noticed about 1 bubble per minute in the airlock. Is the yeast doing it's job or should I add another packet? Also a solid layer of sludge has formed on the surface of the beer, is this normal? Cheers!
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Yes, it is working. No, it doesn't need any additional yeast, and yes, the layer on top is entirely normal.Hang in there and enjoy!
2/7/2009 -- I just put in an order for your famous DBBW and 6# of honey. I have heard that the honey makes this great drink even better. My question is: how much honey do I add to the wort and when?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: I wouldn´t get too carried away with the honey. Perhaps a pound, maybe 3 at the most. I would add it after you see signs of fermentation (bubbling). Others would argue that, but hey....
12/27/2008 -- I have but one 12 oz bottle of (two year old) Death by Barleywine left. I've gone to all-grain brewing and wondered if you make this kit in the all grain variety?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: That one bottle will certainly be an excellent beer. I know people who would fight you for it!Not as an all-grain kit, no...we don't do this recipe. It's hard to pre-make all-grain kits because of the many variables in mashing efficiency etc. Different people use different equipment and usually they step up to a larger batch size too. Trying to "hit" a particular gravity, bitterness and color is hard enough when you HAVE control of these variables. We can do that when we assemble extract-based kits, but not all-grain.HOWEVER...if you have some experience with your equipment, and know about how much grain it takes to produce a specfic gravity, you can use the information below to "target" a recipe like Death by Barleywine.Here is what to shoot for:Homebrew Heaven's Death by Barleywine******************************************Approximate Starting Gravity: 1.080 - 1.120 Approximate Ending Gravity: 1.018 - 1.030 Approximate Bitterness: 45 IBU'sApproximate Color: 24 SRM************************************************Doing this, here is a suggested recipe for a 5 gallon batch of all-grain Death by Barleywine:17.5 lbs 2-Row10 oz Crystal 20 Malt5 oz Chocolate Malt4 oz Roasted Barley1 oz Nugget for 60 min0.5 oz Cascade hops for 10 min0.5 oz Cascade hops for 2 min0.5 oz Cascade hops (dry hop)2 Pkts Nottingham Ale Yeast1 Pkt Red Star Champagne Yeast (after fermentation with ale yeast)
9/7/2008 -- I am a big fan of your ingredient kits but have noticed that the selection has been very low lately. Why are some of your best ingredient kits no longer available?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: We are big fans too! We even like selling them...The real problem is product availability. There is currently a worldwide HOP shortage, believe it or not, and getting the proper varieties in the quantities that we need has been a real challenge. We're hoping the situation will resolve itself by the end of the year, but it may not. Big breweries, microbrews and home brew supply places are scrambling to buy whatever they can right now. We have been fortunate, actually. Many places cannot (and do not) sell hops at all now. Often they limit quantities to very small amounts.We have chosen to limit the supplies of our ingredient kits and still offer some hops to home brewers out there. When we CAN offer more, we certainly will!
4/27/2008 -- what are the pros and cons of the dry yeast included in your ingredient kits vs the optional wet yeast culture? i'm especially interested in whether one produces more alcohol over the other and viability of the yeasts after shipping, and i welcome any other info you care to share.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Both dry yeasts and liquid yeast cultures are excellent products. Generally speaking, you would use a liquid yeast culture if you are trying to replicate a particular style (or brand) of beer. This is especially so with specialty beers, like hefeweizens, bocks, or lambics for instance. To give all the pro/cons for all styles would be a huge task. A good source of information on liquid yeast cultures is the Wyeast website. It gives a rundown of all their cultures and viability information. Here is a link to their product selection section. For more alcohol, you would select one with a high attenuation value. That means it is capable of consuming more malt sugars (the yeast has a higher alcohol tolerance).http://www.wyeastlab.com/hb_yeaststrain.cfmLiquid yeast cultures are fresh, and normal shipping is not a problem for them. If the shipping route crosses a very HOT area, it may make sense to add a frozen gel pack to your order to keep the liquid yeast cool for the trip. After it arrives you should put it into the refrigerator until the day before you brew.
4/26/2008 -- could you use an oak barrel instead of bottling the barleywine, and let it age in there
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Yes that can be done, altho the hard part is getting the beer cold and dispensing it. Another way is to age the beer in the barrel and THEN bottle it after it is fully aged.
3/31/2008 -- I am making your Death by Barleywine kit and it has been fermenting for about 6 weeks. I added the champagne yeast to the wort about 2 weeks ago, when the bubbles dissappeared, however I have seen no more bubbles and the gravity is staying right at 1.061. I don't know if the champagne yeast didn't work, or if it's just supposed to take this long or what. In any case, is there something I could or should do to get it going, or should I give it more time?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Not a cause for worry. It is there merely to ensure proper carbonation, and to finish off any remaining malt sugars.I would give it more time, AND make sure the volume is correct, i.e. 5 gallons. If not, add some water and the ending gravity will come down.
3/12/2008 -- On the directions to your kits it is stated that the beer will get better with aging. I've brew a few of your kits and I would like to know the proper way to age the beers. I've brewed the west coast blonde Ale, Diamond Knot IPA, Steadfast scottish Ale, and the Kangaroo Tail Ale.Thank You,John Newman
Response From Homebrew Heaven: With ALL beers, it is important to age them away from strong sunlight or florescent light. For ales (like those you brewed), room temperature storage is just fine. For lagers, it is BEST to let them sit at room temperature for at least 2-3 weeks, and then store them in a cool area, like a basement. 42-55 deg F is ideal for that. If you can't find a place like that, no worries. Your lagers will be just fine at room temperature storage also.
2/19/2008 -- i purchased the brown ale, followed the directions but it's ben over 10 days and im still not getting any bubbles through the air lock. Beer temp is aprox 68 to70 degrees,what do you think?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: I think you should take a hydrometer reading. A hydrometer reading of your specific gravity will tell you what the condition of your beer is (done, still fermenting, not done etc), so you can THEN decide what the next step is. Time does not do this. Specific gravity reading do. Bubbling is an indicator, but a hydrometer reading tells the real story. For me to tell you what to do at this point would be shooting in the dark.
2/15/2008 -- Am new to hb'ing, love VERY hoppy beer,but would like 10 or 11%..can i achieve this without screwin up a batch like i've already done...it so what additional ingredients should i add..have a taste for ipa's...any help is deeply appreciated.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: That kind of alcohol level can be achieved, but it put the beer into the barleywine category. This is a beer style, not a wine. Perhaps try a commercial barleywine to see if that is what you have in mind. If so, our Death by Barleywine Kit is a tremendous example. It needs time to brew, and time to age, but it is VERY VERY hoppy, and has that kind of alcohol.Here is a link to that product:http://store.homebrewheaven.com/Product326
1/26/2008 -- I live about an hour (if traffic is good) from the address on your website. Do you have an actual store or is everything here based solely online?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Yes, we have an actual brick-and-mortar store in Everett, WA. People actually walk in and buy stuff!Our address is:Homebrew Heaven9109 Evergreen WayEverett, WA 98204Here is a video of our shop: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N1a5fKvv8XIHeck, you can actually call us on the phone, too! It's 425-355-8865. A person will actually answer as long as it's business hours!
1/17/2008 -- I brewed up a batch of your DBB and added about 1.5lb of brown sugar. For reference, we were using a 5gal kettle so I boiled 3.5gal of water originally and topped off to get to 5gal.Primary fermentation using the Wyeast smackpack was very active for 48 hours (definitely good we used a runoff bucket), and stayed fairly active for almost 2 weeks. When we transferred and pitched the Lalvin champagne yeast, really didn't notice any bubbling in the airlock. Got some more, hydrated first, and pitched again...nothing. Tried a gradual starter - 1qt water + 1 cup DME to begin...after that was active, added 3/4gal of bwine to the 1gal jug...was semi-active in the morning, subsided quite a bit in the evening...transferred contents of jug in the evening to the carboy with the original 4.25gal.Doesn't seem like any activity is really happening in the carboy. Unfortunately we didn't take an OG, but a gravity reading after trying the first lalvin pitch was 1.050, and tasted fairly sweet (but still a noticable alcohol punch). Anything else I can try? I have a feeling bottling at this point will lead to grenading but not sure what else I can do. Thinking we should have done more than a healthy pour into the bucket for aeration at the beginning. Is it salvageable?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Barleywine style beer is NOT your typical beer. To brew a great barleywine, you need to use all the best beer brewing procedures at your disposal. It's a very high gravity beer, and getting a complete fermentation takes some doing. Do not worry about the champagne yeast not fermenting any further. All of the fermentable sugars appear to have been fermented already. The champagne yeast will be needed to ferment the bottling sugar.Things to improve:1) You need to boil the entire batch, at least. Starting with at least 6 gallons allows for evaporation. Boiling less carmelizes (some of) the sugars, making them unfermentable. This leads to a higher ending gravity.2) Barleywines in particular need LOTS of oxygen to get the yeast into a competitive state of mind. They have no minds, but you get the idea. They need that O2. Very active sloshing around helps, but bubbling pure O2 thru the wort is even better.Having said all that, your beer is not lost. First of all, check your actual volume. If it is less than 5 gallons, that explains some of it. You could add some water, and it may ferment some more. If it IS correct, I would bottle it anyway. It is unlikely your beer will ferment any further, so at worst, your DBB will end up a little sweet. Try aging it a while, and it will very likely improve.
1/2/2008 -- Does it make any diffence if Barleywine is aged in glass bottles or SS Kegs?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Absolutely no difference at all.
8/31/2007 -- I have a Death by Barleywine in its 1st fermintation and every thing is going great. I was woundering when I transfer and start the 2nd fermintation do I aireate the wort again for the new yeast?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: No, there is no need to do that with this kit.
6/25/2007 -- I am eager to bounce into the world of Home Brewing. What type of beer should I attempt to brew first, if I am a rookie at this? Should I attempt bottling first, then move onto kegging? Thanks, and Happy Brewing!
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Welcome to our world!The best of type of beer to make is the kind you like to DRINK! All beers are made in a similar manner, so there is really no such thing as a "starter" beer. We encourage people to select a favorite beer style kit from our lineup in the Beer Ingredients (Recipe) section. Here is a link to that category:http://store.homebrewheaven.com/Category33These kits make great beer, and most importantly, they get you brewing the RIGHT way. Each has complete instructions that walk you right thru the process.Yes, I would recommend bottling your beer at first. Kegging is a great way to go, but it's not for everyone. Even seasoned "keggers" make use of the bottling equipment in our kits every now and then.Enjoy!
6/22/2007 -- I made a batch of your 'Death by Barleywine' a while back. It has now aged properly and tastes incredible. I want to order another kit to make this again, but first I want to work out a problem I had during the first 24 hours of fermenting. I followed the instructions very carefully, did not add any additional sweet stuff. After about 6 hours after putting in the fermenter it blew the top off of my fermenter... It was wild. Then for the next 6 hours it spewed foam out and over the top of the fermenter. I had to place the active concoction near the drain in my basement. I also lowered the temperature of the environment from about 70 to 55 degrees F. Now, next time I'm contemplating using two fermenters and putting half in each, after finished cooking - this should give the batch room to have the enormous head during fermentation. Should I also keep the temperature below 70? Any help would be appreciated. Love the stuff.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Glad to hear you enjoy our Death! A tasty beer indeed.Yes, it can get very active, and needs lots of room for the active fermentation that often occurs. A larger fermenter (or 2 of them, splitting the batch) is a good idea. Lowering the fermentation temp is not. It should stay at about room temperature for the duration of the ferment.Often, what people do is create a "blowoff tube" and use that in place of the normal airlock. To make one, simply push a length of siphon hose thru the rubber stopper, and put the other end into a container of water, like a coffee can. This in effect allows all the foam to "blow off" into the container instead of your floor drain. Empty it regularly, and then when the fermentation subsides to "normal" levels, replace the blow-off tube with an airlock and stopper.Remember, a fast, active fermentation is a GOOD thing! It means you have active, fresh yeast, lots of nutrients and ideal fermentation conditions. Just plan for it, and you will be fine.
4/30/2007 -- I recently brewed my third batch of beer and decided to go for all the gusto...DBB! What an experience so far...I never knew home brewing could be so much fun. For the extra "kick", I added 2#s of honey at the end of the boil and had an OG of 1.122. The fermentation started off slow but soon became extremely vigirous...so much that it appears that I've lost a significan volume in my carboy (aproximately 1.5" and still blowing foam). So here's my question, Is it advisable to add water (boiled then cooled) to the secondary fermenter to make up for lost volume?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: That's going to be one BIG beer!Yes, topping off with some water is a good idea, at least when the foaming subsides a bit. The idea is to yield 5 gallons of Death!
4/8/2007 -- I brewed my death by barly kit Saturday april 7,2007 , my first batch of beer. Easter morning I noticed that the water that was in the air lock had been replaced by beer, and alot of foaming was goin on. Yeast at work, but also the lid of the primary was bulged up. My question is, is any of this a problem, or is it very normal, will the top blow off the primary?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: You have a very active fermentation going, which is common, and is really a good thing. You need to take care of it, however. At LEAST remove the airlock, clean it out, and replace the water. If it is VERY active, the airlock can clog, and even be blown out, along with some beer as well.The BEST thing to do is to push a length of siphon hose thru your stopper hole, and put it in place of your airlock. This is called a blow-off tube. Put the other end of the blow-off tube into a container of water. It acts as a large airlock this way, and allows the foam to go harmlessly into the container. After the fermentation dies down a bit, you can replace the blow-off tube with your regular airlock.
4/6/2007 -- I've brewed a batch of Death by Barleywine. After I transferred to the secondary, I pitched the champagne yeast and ...... nothing! No bubbles, no foam, nothing. I waited 1 week and decided to repitch some more champagne yeast thinking the yeast was bad or maybe I did something wrong. Still no bubbles after the 2nd batch of yeast. So, I decided to take a reading and it's at 1.034. I can't remember where it started exactly, but I remember it was near where the kit said it would be. Of course I decided to taste it just to see where it is and it's still slightly sweet. Is this normal for barleywine? I'm anxious to bottle, but obviously don't want to do it too soon. Any advice is appreciated.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: It's not unusual not to see bubbling after adding the champagne yeast. Entirely normal, and it is still necessary to ensure carbonation in the bottles.Your final gravity reading is a little high, but nothing to be alarmed about. The instructions say that 1.031 is a good reading for bottling. Your's didn't quite make it that low, but it is safe to bottle. High ending readings are usually due to errors in volume measurement, inconsistant temperatures, not using sufficient yeast, and ESPECIALLY not aerating well enough before adding the yeast. If you are sure you have 5 gallons, then I suspect that latter was the problem. High gravity beers like barleywines require LOTS of oxygen ensure complete fermentation. Next time, aerate better and I'll bet you have a lower ending gravity.
3/6/2007 -- I hope I still have viable wort. 24 hours after pitching the liquid yeast into the Barleywine, I had very active fermentation (2 bubbles per second!) When I got up this morning (36 hours later) I had dark liquid in the airlock and it was clogged. After cleaning/sanitizing the airlock I realized there was a LOT of foam buildup. By the way, 1st SG reading was 1.123! (yes I added abt 1.5 lbs of clover honey to the end of the boil). I replaced the airlock, put the bucket on my patio in the cool shade and went to work. Came home, airlock had blown off and the stopper hole was totally exposed to the outside air. I once again sanitized the airlock and replaced it, and the fermentation continued right along at 2 bubbles per second. Since there's so much fermentation, did the out-gassing through the airlock stopper hole prevent bacteria from entering the carboy? Also, what causes so much foaming? What should I look for to see if the wort is contaminated?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: In all liklihood, your wort is just fine. As you say, the outgassing keeps bacteria from entering. No worries.What causes it? Ideal conditions for the yeast...lots of sugars (malt), ideal temperature, lots of fresh yeast, etc etc. They just go nuts sometimes. It happens, and in general it is a GOOD thing. Sometimes brewers put a "blowoff hose" on their fermenter in place of the airlock. A blowoff hose is simply a length of siphon hose stuffed thru a stopper hole. You put the other end into a bucket of water, and LET it blow stuff thru it. End of problem.There is really no test or sign for contamination, other than a foul smell, and I REALLY doubt you will see that. Hang in there, it can't continue at that pace forever. The malt sugars will soon be consumed, and the yeast will start to lose interest.
2/26/2007 -- I am (hopefully still) brewing the death by barleywine. After the boil, I had it in the primary fermenter where all was going well...Then I had to go away for 4 days and figured I would just leave it to do its thing until I got back. However, when I did get back the airlock water was brown and not bubbling, and I'm not sure for how long. I cleaned out and replaced the airlock, but am I pretty much screwed now that the airlock was compromised for an unknown amount of time?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: No, probably not at all. You did the right thing. I would proceed as normal.
1/25/2007 -- My first brew! First fermentation took 3 days. Been in carboy now for 4 days - no more activity - so I took a hydrometer reading - now at 1.010 original was at 1.042. Could it be ready for kegging? Seems crazy fast. This is the American Pilsner by the way. Great site!
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Why worry? Hydrometers don't lie. It may seem crazy fast to you, but it happens all the time. Fermentation time doesn't mean diddly. Hydrometer readings do. Lots of commercial breweries are on a 7 day brew-to-keg schedule.It's ready to keg!
1/15/2007 -- I just brewed your St. Pete's Pilsner, needless to say, I'm getting impatient waiting to try it. But my question is as follows: I would like to know the weights of the malts, grains, hops, irish moss, and yeast used to make batch. Could you inform on that? I am trying to keep a record and I failed to do that myself. Thanks.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Sorry. That is something that we do not do. Our kits are proprietary recipes of Homebrew Heaven. We are justifiably proud of them, having won many awards and honors. Even commercial breweries have asked us for our recipes, and we've given the same answer.
1/8/2007 -- I just brewed my first batch (St. Peter's Pilsner) and I think my impatience got the best of me. I placed the primary fermentor in my basement with a room temp at 55 degrees (approx. 6 days). I misread the directions as to when to switch the beer into the secondary fermentor. There was one bubble every 40 seconds, I didn't wait for the one bubble/minute or less. Is it ruined or is there something that I can do about it?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Absolutely NO reason for concern here.We give time guidelines like "one bubble per minute" reluctantly, and the only reason we do it is because people insist on using a clock as a measure of how "done" their beer or wine is. They hate using a hydrometer. Clocks are more familiar, I guess. It is completely an artificial yardstick. Yeast cells don't wear watches, and if they did, they certainly wouldn't care about our "bubbles per minute".In other words, your beer will be just fine! No need to do anything at this point except wait for fermentation to finish. When THAT occurs, well, it's up to the yeast cells...they do the work, we just take the credit!
1/6/2007 -- My batch of Vanilla Wiezen has been in the secondary fermenter for about a week now and I have not seen any bubbling. Is it possible that all the fermentation took place in the primary? What kind of reading am I looking for in the Wiezen prior to bottling? My first reading was 1.042. Thanks for the help.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Yes, it is entirely possible. This is the time to take an "ending gravity" reading, using your hydrometer and test jar. This reading should be (approx. 1.008 -1.014), according to your instructions for this kit.
1/3/2007 -- I see you get questions refering to this quite a bit. After 3 days we haven't seen any bubbling, and I made sure my seal was good again after reading, and it seems to be. I still ask because we had to alter the procedure a little to accommodate our indoor equipment. I could only use 2 gallons of water initially, but other than that followed everything else exactly. We also used the Wyeast Scottish Ale Yeast. After transfering into the primary fermentor we added enough cold water to bring it up to 5 gallons then took a reading, which came out to 1.037(I noticed you said this would come out low if you added water). So after reading, I sterilized the hydrometer again, took another sample, and now the reading is 1.040. Does it seem things are going ok? How do I wait for it to drop, and at that point, what do I do?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Yes, we do get these kind of questions. People are anxious about their new hobby, and usually just want some assurance that they haven't screwed it up. That is SELDOM the case.I will assume that the yeast was added after all the water was in there, AND that you ruptured the inner pouch on the yeast pack, and allowed it to swell up. If all that was done, you should have no problem. I also assume there is water in the airlock.There may be a delay of a day or three, due to adding cold water to it. The yeast likes room temperature, not cold. Keep your primary fermenter up off of cold floors, and you should see activity soon.After the reading drops to about 1.022 or so, siphon off the good stuff into your carboy and allow it to finish. Follow the directions from there...
12/30/2006 -- I have started brewing a batch of Shamrock Irish stout, it has been 72 hours and I have seen minimal productivity in the primary fermenter (1 major bubble from the air lock). The temp in the area of fermantation is approx. 68 degrees, my starting SG was 1.046, i am worried that nothing is occurring. should I transfer to carboy or take a reading first and then transfer? also, what's the best procedure for taking a reading from the primary without contamination?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Worrying never improved a beer.My guesses at this point (in order):1) The fermentation already occured, you just missed it2) The lid on your primary fermenter is not sealed 100%A hydrometer reading will tell you what is up.There is no harm in opening up your bucket, and siphoning off a sample into your hydrometer test jar. A little air is not going to ruin a batch of beer. Just keep things clean, is all.If your hydrometer reading is less than your starting reading, then fermentation HAS been occuring. Now it's a matter of how much has occured, and whether/not to transfer to your carboy. As a guide, transfer when the reading is about 1/3 to 1/2 of your original reading. In this case, the reading should be about 1.020 before transfering. This is NOT hard and fast number, as I say, it's just a guideline.
11/5/2006 -- I live in Seattle, can I come and pick up the bottles in Everett? Do you have a "brick and mortar" store?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: You sure can. It is literally made of bricks and mortar, in South Everett. Our address is:Homebrew Heaven9109 Evergreen WayEverett, WA 98204425-355-8865Hours are 10-6:30 M-F and 9:30-5 on SaturdaysHere is a video of the place:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N1a5fKvv8XITake a look around!
8/11/2006 -- i ws looking at your recipe kits and i was intrigued by your death by barleywine. Is it a typo or does the kit really come woth 15.1 lbs of yeast?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: No, it does not. It comes with about 11 lbs of dry malt extract, however. It's shipping weight is about 15 lbs.
6/12/2006 -- when brewing beers with a high alcohol content (barley wine, eisbock), can i use a packet of windsor yeast in the secondary fermenter instead of the champagne yeast-i have a difficult time finding the champagne yeast.thanks
Response From Homebrew Heaven: No. The champagne yeast is needed because of the high alcohol tolerance. Typical beer yeasts "die off" at about 9% alcohol. Champagne yeast is not hard to find...we have it!
4/9/2006 -- With your recipe kits, what would happen if i added the hopped extract to the water in the at the same time i added the specialty grains and started heating? I don't really like moving 6 gallons of boiling water off a cooker to prevent scorching the extract and thought adding the extract right at the start would help.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: You can do that, however the dry malt extract will take a while to fully dissolve in the cold water. You will find that dry malt extract tends to float on the top of the water until it dissolves, therefor scorching is less of a problem than with liquid (syrup) malt extracts that fall to the bottom.
3/26/2006 -- I brewed Procrastinator Bock at the end of last year, and I'm really enjoying the fruits of my labor. I'm down to about 12 bottles... :( Anyway, I want to brew another batch, but I'm ready to try a little bit of manipulation of the original recipe in order to tweak it. Do you have the original recipe quantities so I can modify it slightly?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: That's one thing we don't do (give out our recipes). Sorry. We have put a lot of development "work" (fun actually) into our kits, and many people, other brewshops and even commercial breweries have tried to copy them. It doesn't make business sense to release that information. They are tried and true, they are our products, and we're proud of them! We have no problem with customers altering our kits to their tastes, and we encourage brewers to do that. We just don't make the recipes available outside of Homebrew Heaven.
3/26/2006 -- Delayed fermenting question...For three days, my IPA was happily bubbling along when we got a cold snap.. Then there was a decrease in fermenting for a good 2 days or so, even though I moved the primary fermenter inside from the garage. Will this affect taste adversely? Should I rack it into the secondary fermenter earlier/later or anything? Or toss the whole batch and start fresh? Thanks and LOVE the seaturtle bottle caps!
Response From Homebrew Heaven: The most common question we get is:"My beer/wine is not fermenting (according to the schedule) like I think is should...is it ruined?" People think it is either fermenting too slow or too fast, or has stopped prematurely or won't quit fermenting (again,... according to their schedule). This question falls into the same category. My answer to these questions is always:1) Yeast cells don't care about your schedule. They don't have brains or wristwatches. They respond to other things, like sugar levels, competition from other yeast, temperature, nutrient levels and LOTS of other things instead. Trying to get them to adhere to your schedule is futile. Sometime they just behave differently than expected.2) Given the above, recipes that say things like "ferment for 10 days and bottle" make no sense. What does? Hydrometer readings. Without beginning and current hydrometer readings you are guessing based on the calender. At LEAST 95% of the time, there is no real problem with the brew. Without taking a reading, you don't know if your beer is done fermenting. It may very well be...I can't say without that reading. It is almost NEVER a good solution to toss out a batch based on a what it is/is not doing with regards to your schedule.Will a few days of cool fermentation ruin your brew? Not very likely. Extended fermenation of a ale at very low temps is not good, but most of your fermentation (maybe all of it?) took place at the correct temps. If it was me, I would go ahead and trasfer to your carboy now, and get a hydrometer reading to see where you are.
2/20/2006 -- I just finished the ESB kit. When I put the wort into the primary I had to add water in order to bring the level up to 5 gallons. So I added the water and took a SG reading and only got about a 1030 reading. Do you think that I grabbed some of the water in my sample and that is why the reading is low?Is there anything I should do now? The batch seems to be bubbling away nicely.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Absoutely. Even if you stir it well, it will not completely mix, and will give you low readings. It does not affect your beer, however. No need to do anything.
8/7/2005 -- I just started and this is the first beer I have brewed. Being a beginner, I of course made a mistake. I didn't put in the Irish Moss, but everything else I did according to the directions. What kind of effect will this have on the beer?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Very minor; not to worry.Irish moss is a natural clarifier. It aids clearing by causing proteins to settle out prior to bottling. The worst you may notice is that when you chill your beer, you get a slight haziness (called chill haze), but it will not affect the flavor of your beer at all.
5/16/2005 -- i just asked a question but forgot to ask about your kits. Do the kits come with all the ingredients that i need or do i need to buy other ingredents to make my beer? and thanx again,i noticed that you don't try to sell people needless products when they ask you questions about home brewing. you just want to help people make better beer at home.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Homebrew Heaven Ingredient Kits come with everything you need except water; they are pre-measured, and ready to go with complete instructions. Thank you for your comment; we try to be helpful. In the long run, that is best for home brewers, and best for our business as well.
4/16/2005 -- When you use DME to carbonate the beer, how do you get it dissolved without a lot of stirring,(which would not be good for the beer)?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: One way is to boil about 12-16 oz of water (or beer) and dissolve your dry malt extract into that (use about 1.25 cups for a 5 gallon batch). After it is dissolved, it can be gently stirred into the main batch.
2/3/2005 -- I am quite interested in stepping up to a barley wine. I'm curious about the procedure for hopping in the secondary fermenter. Do you need to do anything to the hops to prevent bacteria or foreign yeasts from entering the brew?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: No worries. Hops are a natural antibacterial agent, and I have never heard of dry hopping causing an infection. I like to use leaf hops, and tie them up into a hop and grain bag along with a small weight, like a rock. Simply throw them into your secondary! Hop pellets work just fine too, they just need a little time to settle out before racking.
11/2/2004 -- My friend and I have recently purchased your Belgian Ale kit. We followed all the proper steps to ensure a good brew, things were going well until the onset of Hurricane Ivan. Our brew was in the first stage primary fermentation. It has been there for a little over a month and a half. Can we proceed normally from here and actually produce a good product or should we consider this batch- botched and start again?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: A Hurricane is no match for BEER! Really, it should be fine.As long as the airlock remained in place, I would pick up and go with it. Now you know what to name it: Ivan's Belgian Ale.
10/6/2004 -- I am new to home brewing and purchased your brewing starter kit with the wort cooler last week and it arrived on Monday with the American Pilsner kit included. And what a great deal with the chiller!First off, the American Pilsner was enclosed into the primary fermenter on Tuesday and it's now Wednesday and it is really, really dark with about an 1 1/2 foam on top. Is This Common? Second. A friend gave me a kit of Barley Wine that he recently purchased, wow, however he has no room to brew it. So, I boiled the kit today and is now in primary fermenter. The kit is not a Homebrew Heaven kit, but I thought to ask you a question. I see that your kits say to add a champagne yeast after the secondary fermentation where the one I am brewing does not. Should I follow your instructions and add this additional step? If so, what champagne yeast should I purchase from you? I added WYeast Londen-Ale 1028XL liquid yeast initially. It is also now some 6hrs later and it has developed a white foam and a dark green / black crust on top of the foam. is this common? Thanks for the super kit and look forward to more purchases from Homebrew Heaven!!! p.s. The video supplied helped a ton! Thanks again.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Glad to hear everything arrived, and in good order.First: Yes, it will LOOK dark (especially thru the fermenter), but not to worry, it will be a light colored beer in the end. The foaming is the yeast going to work on your wort (unfermented beer). This is a good sign!Second: Congratulations on your free beer! We call for adding champagne yeast at the end because OUR kit is a true barleywine style beer (VERY,VERY high in alcohol), and the alcohol level goes beyond what the beer yeast can handle. It's hard to say if this is necessary with Brand X Kit (probably not), but it wouldn't hurt to add it after the secondary fermentation subsides. This will ensure that you have sufficient live yeast to carbonate your beer in the bottles. I would just use a packet of dry champagne yeast (like the Red Star brand).
9/22/2004 -- I am thinking about purchasing the Barelywine kit but I only have a 20 qt brew pot. Would it be possible to brew only 3 gallons and then add water to it later? If so, then will this have any negative effects on the finished brew?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: It can be done, but it is better to boil the entire 5 (or 6) gallons. You CAN divide up the kit into two brewpots to do this. I would see if you can beg borrow or steal another 2-3 gallon pot, and do it that way.
9/16/2004 -- could this barley wine be kegged? also, once fermentation is over, instead of bottling would i keep it in the keg for the 3-6 months?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Yes, it can be kegged, and aged in the keg.
9/7/2004 -- How do I pitch the yeast in a second fermintation? Do I add to boiled water?(After it's cooled), or do I just pitch it from the package?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: With the Death by Barleywine Kit, a secondary fermentation is done using champagne yeast. This is necessary to get the very high alcohol level in this kit, and to assure that carbonation will occur after the beer yeast "dies off".The champagne yeast can be added directly to the beer, or simply re-hydrated in a cup of water (maybe 65-80 deg F) and then added. There is no need(or advantage)to boiling the water first.
8/20/2004 -- How much Champagne yeast should be used for 10 gallons of Barleywine for the second stage fermentation?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: About 10 grams (two packages).
5/21/2004 -- Brewed DBB Wed. and now in primary (bucket, not carboy). Noticing an extraordinary amount of bubbling. Not the normal air leaving the system either, more foamy with tons of chunky black residue. This foam is actually getting into the airlock and got to a point where it blew the top off of the airlock last night which created quite the mess. Is this common place for a beer with such high alcohol? How can I make this foam stop, or is the batch ruined? Any particular reason this is happening? I have brewed over 20 batches in the past and never seen anything like this. Beer is at 70 degrees in a dark dry location, as always. HELP!!!!
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Lots of foaming is actually a good thing, and the idea is to accomodate it. Keep cleaning out that airlock, or install a blowoff hose (put a length of tubing thru a stopper and attach to the bucket, put the other end into a jar of water). No, your beer is not ruined at all.There are LOTS of malt sugars in this kit, and when the yeast is fresh, and conditions are right, they can go into a feeding frenzy, is all. It is very common, especially when warm. It will calm down soon, just hang in there!
5/16/2004 -- I noticed in the recipes from "Capturing Beer" that the author recommends using less bittering hops when brewing up a full 5 gallons (instead of boiling 2-3 gallons and adding water to the primary). Do you recommend tinkering with the bittering hops of your kits (St. Pete's, etc) when boiling up a full 5 gallons of wort in the brewpot?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: No. Our kits are designed for a full 5 gallon boil (or more). That is the best way to make beer, and that the way we recommend doing it. Using a concentrated wort (partial boil volume) doesn't properly utilize the hops (or malt) in the kit. It will still make good beer, but it is better to boil it all. Actually, I like to start with 6 gallons, to allow for evaporation during the boil, thus yeilding 5 gallons.If you DO boil less than 5 gallons, it is possible to compensate for hop bitterness levels by adding slightly MORE hops, but that still doesn't address the poor breakdown of the malt, or the carmelization (darkening) that occurs from a concentrated boil. As I say, in general it's a bad idea. Get a bigger brewpot, and make better beer!
4/9/2004 -- I have your St Peter's Pilsner kit but desire some info not found in kit. Two questions....Is there a full 5 lbs of the dry malt in the package ??What bitterness rating may I expect using your recipe exactly to the best of my ability ?? I've 8 years brew experience.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: The expected bitterness is 16 IBU's, but we don't give out the actual ingredients, weights etc for our Homebrew Heaven Ingredient Kits.
3/25/2004 -- I am returning to home brewing after about 10 years off - don't ask! I made several batches of a kit called something like "Irish Ale" which was suggested by the retailer where I bought my original supplies. It was amber colored and well received by all. My understanding was that pilzners and ales could be made without cooling, lagers and stouts required cooler temps. (50 deg or so). Could you please give a breakdown as to pilzners, ales, stouts, porters and lagers as far as special temperature requirements during fermentation. Also, could you suggest a full bodied, strong dark beer.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Welcome back!There are two primary types of beer, ales and lagers, based on the type of yeast used to ferment them. Typically, lagers are the following styles:pilsnersbocksmarzen/oktoberfest/vienna beersAles have many different styles:stoutsporters weizenspale alesIPA'sbelgian alesThe above listing are generalities, of course, and there are a few "crossovers". There is nothing saying you can't make a bock using an ale yeast, for example.Lagers are best fermented and stored at cool temperatures, in the range of about 40-50 deg F. They can be done warmer, but generally they become smoother with lagering.Ales are typically fermented at about room temperature.There are MANY full bodied, strong dark beers. For a lager, my favorite is our Procrastinator Bock. For an ale, try the Scuttlebutt Porter or Belgian Ale.
3/23/2004 -- I am a beginning homebrewer and I am trying to determine the Alcohol by Volume of your beer kits. How you you go about using the specific gravities (starting/ending) to determine the alcohol by volume?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: You can approximate the % alcohol by taking the starting gravity and subtracting the ending gravity. You then divide this value by 8.For Example:Start Gravity (OG) = 1.050Ending Gravity (FG) = 1.012Difference in gravity "points" = 3838 divided by 8 = 4.75% alcohol by volumeThis is a handy (easy) way to do it. There are other, more accurate ways but for most purposes this is close enough.
3/13/2004 -- 1. For a first time home brewer, is there a recipe that is cheap and easy, like only one thing to mix with the water? I want to have a test run to make sure I have the steps and the sterilization right, even if it makes a run of the Mill(er) style beer. I do not want to waste $30 on a good ale kit and turn it to vinegar as a learning experiment when I could just waste $5 of malt syrup!I have a plastic-glass set-up and scotch ale ingredients that someone gave me, that is why I ask.2. What is the success rate for first time brewers, and if I do make vinegar, should I run away crying?3. Should I be trying to filter out the Irish Moss when I put the wort in the primary fermentor?4. A comment: you have the only site on this subject that is both user friendly for shopping, and informative on the process!
Response From Homebrew Heaven: 1. We try to make really, really EASY, and the first time success rate is 100%, as far as I can tell. I'd recommend our Back to Basics Ale Kit, tho, if you want to be cautious. It is only $22.50 and makes a very good beer. The instructions are good...they walk you thru step-by-step.Here is a link to it:http://www.nexternal.com/hombre/?Target=products.asp&ProductID=9562. See above. Success is expected. If, for some reason, you make something undrinkable, we'll refund your $$ on that batch. End of problem.3. No, the irish moss should be left in. It helps proteins and other stuff settle out later. You will see it happen after the fermentation stops.4. Thank YOU, Gill. We work hard on our website, and it just keeps getting bigger and better. We hear that people appreciate the variety of products and the advice. People keep coming back, too.... sneeky aren't we?
2/20/2004 -- what ingredient kit do i have to buy thatsclose to the taste of coors light or bud light?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: That would be the American Pilsner Kit.Here is a link to it:http://www.nexternal.com/hombre/?Target=products.asp&ProductID=992
2/12/2004 -- just wondering what the approximate content(pounds) of dry malt is in your kits. Also, do you feel krausening has advantages over kegging?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Each ingredient kit contains a different amount of dry malt extract...less in lighter beers (like American Pilsner) and much more in the Death By Barleywine kit. The actual amounts are considered proprietary. You will find most brewers prefer kegging to any kind of priming (krausening is just a for of priming). The drawback is the kegging requires more equipment, and a spare refrigerator to dispense from.
2/12/2004 -- Is it possible to Brew your wort in two 2.5 gallon bacthes to use smaller pots that the inside stove will boil mor readily?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Yes, this can be done. I would start with about 3 gallons in each, however, to allow for evaporation.
1/28/2004 -- My wife has finally given me the ok after we get moved into our house to get a kit from you guys. I was wondering which beer you all would reccomend as my first beer to try I was wanting to do Death By Barleywine but didn't know if that would be to hard to try for my first beer brewing experience.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: The Barleywine kit is one I would leave until you have a few batches in the bottle.Barleywine can almost take a year till its at it peak for consumption.Try something a little lighter, lets say a the Golden Ale or British Pale Ale.These should be ready in as little as three to four weeks.Now get going, no time to lose.
1/15/2004 -- I was wondering about using dry ice to chill the wort would this be practical and or feasible? I was thinking you could just set your wort into some dry ice and water and watch the temp drop what do you think?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: I've never done it, sorry. Dry ice can get pretty exciting when adding it to water, however. I imagine that dry ice would get expensive as well. Why not use a wort chiller?
1/4/2004 -- I have started a batch of this beer (St Peter's Pilsner) and have the primary fermatation going in a cool place, but at what temparture should the secondary take place.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: The temperature difference between the primary phase and the lager phase should be roughly 10°F. I guess I'd say the ideal temperature would be 45 deg F., but remember, nothing is absolute. Brewing is both a science and an art! Lower temperatures will extend the time required to finish, but will result in a clean, soft finish that is characteristic of true lagers.
12/27/2003 -- A while back you answered a question about adding blackberries to make a blackberry wheat. How about adding cranberries for a cranberry wheat?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Heck yes. I've found that the only thing limiting you is fear and common sense. Thankfully, I have little of either. About the only advice I can give is add too little, rather that too much. Sneak up on the amount you use.FWIW, we plan to introduce a vanilla wheat beer kit soon. So much for common sense.
12/14/2003 -- I added the champagne yeast approx 2 months ago. There are was a brief increase in bubbling for 2 days. The bubbling, however, has continued every 20-30 seconds since then and has not changed at all over the last month. Temp has been 66-70 throughout. I don't want to check a spec grav for fear of contaminating the batch. Should I try some liquid champagne yeast or just hold my horses or....?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: This sounds pretty normal. Don't worry, a hydrometer reading won't contaminate your beer. Go ahead and take a reading. When the reading is less than about 1.028 it is ready to bottle.
11/30/2003 -- Is it possible to modify this or any other recipe as to gain a higher gravity or alcohol content in a lighter ale?
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Yes, by adding more fermentable sugars to the boil. This is often done with corn sugar or malt extract. Corn sugar is ok within limits, but using too much will add a "cider-like" taste. Malt extract is a better choice, but it will add some color as well. With Belgian ales, it is common to use clear candi sugar (rock candi). This keeps the color light, and adds alcohol.
11/26/2003 -- I recently bought Shamrock Stout. The bubbles were down to under a minute within 2 days, which is when I transferred to the secondary carboy. The bubbles aren't apparent now... which leads me to believe I should add more yeast. The temperature was 78 f at initial yeast introduction, yet now I am concerned that the yeast was not good... Should I add another packet now, or am I thinking too much about this? Thanks HBH!!!
Response From Homebrew Heaven: It sounds just fine to me. A fast, vigorous fermentation is a good thing! It indicates good, fresh yeast and ideal fermentation conditions. This kind of thing is more common in summer months, but it sounds like you have it in a warm place.I assure you that even if you don't see them, plenty of yeast are still in there. I would just let it completely stop, and for the "crud" to settle out before bottling. It is a good idea to take a hydrometer reading to make sure, but it sounds like you could be bottling soon. Not to worry...our motto is "More Beer, Sooner!"
11/10/2003 -- Hello, while unpacking I found a can of extract for barley wine. It had been in storage for over two years. Is it still good? The can is solid and there are no bulges.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: We don't sell any canned barleywine, and can't comment on it's storage life. I would certainly replace the yeast, however (if it came with yeast?).
11/9/2003 -- What is the life span of the beer (period of expiration)
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Not very long at MY house! Seriously, tho, if you store your homebrew properly, it should last for at least a year. Some, like the heavier, darker beers just get better with age. I have had some that was over 4 years old and it was excellent!
10/12/2003 -- I FELT LIKE THE BREW KITS I'VE BOUGHT IN THE PAST LACKED A PUNCH (ALCOHOL CONTENT). WILL USING DME INSTEAD OF SUGAR LOWER THE ALCOHOL CONTENT? HOW STRONG SHOULD I EXPECT MY BEER TO BE BREWING YOUR KITS, I.P.A.AND ST.PETERS PILSNER, ALSO APPROXiMATELY HOW MUCH LONGER TILL DRINKABILITY OR CARBONATION THAN CORN SUGAR? THANK YOU FOR ALL YOUR HELP TODAY PLANNING ON ORDERING MY EQUIMENT AND BEER KITS AFTER YOUR RESPONSE.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Using DME in place of corn sugar will lower the alcohol content slightly, but I doubt if you could measure it. It is more a matter of finer bubbles, and additional flavor from the DME.Each of our Homebrew Heaven Ingredient Kits is designed to make a beer that is true to the style...in other words, it varies kit by kit. For example, the St. Peter's Pilsner will be very much like a pilsner style beer, and lower in alcohol (St. Pete is approximately 4% alcohol by volume). The Diamond Knot IPA is over 5.5% ABV. Others, like Procrastinator Bock are higher (6.9% ABV). In other words, there is no single "correct" alcohol level for the many different styles of beer.
9/20/2003 -- I ordered some of this with the liquid yeast here recently. When in the initial brewing stage, I mixed in the liquid yeast as per instuctions, and 24 hours into the brew, I saw no action at all in the check valve, so I removed the check valve, and added the dry yeast I had that also came with the package. Upon entering the secondary fermentation stage, there seems to be a slightly different odor than my first batch, slightly less sweet....reminescent of a German lager.Did I mess up my beer by adding the dry yeast? IS there anything I should worry about? I did a taste test, and so far, it seems ok, but until the first bottle is opened, you truly never know.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: Nothing to worry about at all! I'm certain it will turn out just fine. Many people, when using liquid yeasts are unaccustomed to the longer "lag" time they experience comparded to dry yeasts. This is entirely normal.For your next batch, however, I would wait for the liquid yeast to kick in. It will, it just takes longer. You can avoid this longer lag time by building a "starter culture" prior to adding to your wort. Very easy to do, and makes sense especially with lagers and high gravity beers.
8/2/2003 -- What is the approx. amount of alcohol content in these beers? Just so I know what to expect when I brew it.
Response From Homebrew Heaven: The alcohol content varies with the beer kit. For the Golden Eagle, it runs about 4.5% ABV. Other beers, like the Procrastinator Bock, are higher; some, like the American Pilsner are lower. We try to keep the alcohol level appropriate to the style of beer.
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