Saison: “Brett Likes Beer”

Today we brewed our second saison (Impeach the Bastard was the first one back in March which won a gold medal at the Mid-State fair). This saison features a bit more complexity in the grain bill including some rye, a hint of citrus zest, French oak, and a few dry hops. We used Wyeast 3711 since that was a great fermenter and also added a vial of yeast we grew…

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Counting Yeast Cells

You don’t need to be a biologist to accurately measure the count and viability of your yeast culture. Without sampling and counting your library yeast and starters, you have to rely on estimates and calculators from software which give really rough generalized estimates, but can be far off from reality depending upon the specific yeast strain, or other factors like how it’s been stored. It’s a lot easier to count…

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Easy DIY Wort Chiller

Our original wort chiller was a 25′ copper immersion chiller that we acquired through part of a Craigslist purchase. While it certainly did the job and was better than not having one, we were ready to have better cooling capacity since we were interested in lagers and needed to reach lower pitch temperatures, as well as minimize the cold-side open air contact with the wort. Since OSH was going out…

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Making a Yeast Starter Kit

If you brew regularly with liquid yeast, starters are a fact of life. Having a dedicated yeast kit ensures that everything you need to build a starter is in one place and ready to go. This can also be useful when brewing with friends or at different locations so that the yeast kit can be taken easily to another house or location to build the healthy yeast, then transported back…

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Dopplebock Lager Yeast “Kettle” Starter

Unless we are pitching dry yeast, starters are built from a liquid yeast pack we buy from our LHBS or from a vial in our yeast library. Typically this is done a day or two before the brew so that the starter is healthy and at peak activity when pitched and can immediately start chewing through the wort sugars. Coming up in four days is our first lager brew: a…

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A38 Cider

Recipe Link It’s time to have a beer alternative on tap for the fall that’s still fun and refreshing to drink. A cider is perfect for mid-week brewing with a busy schedule, requiring minimal effort and no boiling (unless you count the yeast starter). Cider also serves as a great playground for yeast, from NEIPA East-Coast or London strains, to Belgian strains for dry esters and phenols, or maybe a…

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