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Wine Makers, Brewers. What to Stock up on?

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posted on Feb, 5 2008 @ 04:15 PM
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1. ANY yeast

2. hops

3. a good FERMENTATION LOCK

There's a lot of myths about yeast. The fact is, you can brew with ANY yeast. No, not as well; but in the crash, you'll make a lot more money selling swill than you will off of a single malt you've aged yourself.

You can make beer just fine with bread yeast. if you keep a "mother," it will eventually become more "beer friendly" after a few generations, and be indistinguishable from brewers yeast eventually. I have successfully brewed beer using sourdough mother to get going.

You cannot make decent beer without hops. Dried is o.k., but growing your own is the only ultimate answer, or switch to mead / ale. I have a friend who commited major crimes in two nations by stealing noble hops and imported them to texas, where he is trying to grow them in a hidden greenhouse. way worse than drugs if you get caught. I wouldn't be surprised if the beer cartel wacks him eventually.

Most critically, you need a fermentation lock for either wine or beer. It allows the CO2 to escape, thus avoiding bursting your vat. But it's a one-way valve, and doesn't allow contaminating air into the vat. If you let room air in, you can get fungus and various funk in your beer.

That's actually how you make vinegar, just let the air (espeically flies) in.

The cheap locks have an inverted cup that rises to "burp." My brews are sometimes so everfescent that they blow the cup out and let air into the vat.

The good locks look like a silly straw with two swollen areas you fill with water to make a water trap similar to a sewer's in design. Even then, my brew will occasionally blow the water out of the traps. But then, beer usually will function as the locking fluid then.

all the best.




posted on Feb, 5 2008 @ 04:18 PM
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add:

I said any yeast because yeast is so readily available. If you brew grapes, the white dust on fresh harvested grapes is actually brewers' yeast. The yeast has evolved to tag along with the fruit, so we humans will go ahead and let it into the wine.

Until you brew, you don't realize that natural sugars in water will automatically ferment into SOMETHING if left exposed in the air. The trick is controlling what you let in.

In jails, people make wine out of coolaid or apple juice from the commisary. I've heard that the apple juice doesn't work as well--it's been pasteurized, and spoils instead of fermenting.



posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 03:14 PM
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In jails, people make wine out of coolaid or apple juice from the commisary. I've heard that the apple juice doesn't work as well--it's been pasteurized, and spoils instead of fermenting.

"Pruno" is what it's typically called and it's foul stuff. It's made out of nearly anything the incarcerated can get their hands on: french fries, fruit cocktail, etc. It smells like ultra low grade bourbon and I can't imagine how bad it probably tastes. (If you're wondering, I used to work in a prison in a cafeteria and it was my job to keep an eye out for illegal hooch.) The workers from the outside (like myself) were "Pruno Hunters" lol
*Just thought you might be interested in that tidbit of info.*



posted on Feb, 11 2008 @ 05:27 PM
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Ah yes pruno. Not sure if this is one of those fables or real but it has a rep.

First batch of beer was great! Quick question. Can you brew beer with just the dried malt extract and no hops? Or with dried hops?

This sounds like a good option for long term storage.



posted on Feb, 11 2008 @ 05:32 PM
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Originally posted by dr_strangecraft

add:

I said any yeast because yeast is so readily available. If you brew grapes, the white dust on fresh harvested grapes is actually brewers' yeast. The yeast has evolved to tag along with the fruit, so we humans will go ahead and let it into the wine.

Until you brew, you don't realize that natural sugars in water will automatically ferment into SOMETHING if left exposed in the air. The trick is controlling what you let in.

In jails, people make wine out of coolaid or apple juice from the commisary. I've heard that the apple juice doesn't work as well--it's been pasteurized, and spoils instead of fermenting.


I knew about the yeast on grapes. Some old timers told me you can catch wild yeast with water some flour disolved in it and a couple tablespoons of sugar. Let a cup sit out where its warm and has air from outside and it grows in about 5 days. They said you can't see it but you can smell when you caught some.



posted on Feb, 12 2008 @ 01:03 PM
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reply to post by stikkinikki
 



I would be careful with the whole process of fractional distillation...(the freeze method) The process also concentrates Fusel alcohols and that is BAAAD. It is also illegal right now. I would just stick with regular fermentation until you learn what you are doing and how/why the fermentation process works. This is for your health as well as those that share the fruits of your labor.



posted on Feb, 15 2008 @ 09:24 PM
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Originally posted by kaferwerks

I would be careful with the whole process of fractional distillation...(the freeze method)



Help me out here. I thought fractional distilation was based on differing boiling points. I cannot find a result that involves freezing with a quick google. can you point me in the direction of freezing distillation???




The process also concentrates Fusel alcohols and that is BAAAD.


Fuel alcohols? Distillation concentrates ALL alcohol; which is not a problem as long as you are brewing BEER or WINE, and not antifreeze or something. Bread yeast in sugar won't make methyl, or else eating bread would blind you.



It is also illegal right now. I would just stick with regular fermentation until you learn what you are doing and how/why the fermentation process works. This is for your health as well as those that share the fruits of your labor.


Lots of things are illegal. some of them are wrong, too.

.



posted on Feb, 17 2008 @ 12:03 PM
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Freeze distilling is on the scale of pruno and concentrates the toxins that commercial distillers remove. Its popular among college kids to up the proof. It is neither healthy or legal.


Fusel oils are toxins normaly removed in a commercial process, or if not removed they are further broken down by oak barrel aging, much like wine.



[edit on 17-2-2008 by Illahee]



posted on Feb, 22 2008 @ 12:40 PM
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Went to the brew shop the other day and picked up a 6 gallon French Cab kit. After experimenting with oak a bit on cheaper cabs and getting excellent results this one will get a 2.5 week bulk aging on cubes. It had oak chips in it but they don't do much.

Went a little crazy on the beer thing and have a Cervesa and a Canadian draft going. Hardly ever drink beer but sometimes guests do.

Anyway I picked up some sanitizer and the guy at the shop recommended 1step no rinse from Brewcraft. I thought it was spendy at 8 bucks for a pound but when I got it home it says it makes 32 gallons, and its non sulphite, so we have a winner.

Some of the malt cans had 2010 dates on them. If any come in with longer times I might put back a couple cans for holidays or events.



posted on Feb, 22 2008 @ 03:30 PM
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reply to post by dr_strangecraft
 


Fractional Distillation can be used to separate different substances when they are mixed together and relies upon the fact that different substances seperate at different temperatures.i.e. alcohol freezes at a lower temp than h20...so the water freezes and leaves a concentrated mixture behind when the ice is removed...very inefficient as far as distilling goes. fractional applies to heating also.

en.wikipedia.org... it was mentioned above these are removed in the commercial process


Fuel alcohols? Distillation concentrates ALL alcohol; which is not a problem as long as you are brewing BEER or WINE, and not antifreeze or something. Bread yeast in sugar won't make methyl, or else eating bread would blind you.


I have to disagree here about not worrying about beer and wine. Fusel alcohol is a byproduct of the fermentation process in ALL alcohols...it doesn't matter what yeast you use or what you make. Temperatures and oxygenation and haveing the adequate amount of yeast during pitching are the 3 big contributers.

Making bread however is the same deal BUT w/o the right temps and ingredients your bread fails to rise...because of a lack of co2 and ethyl alcohol present...so you have the right environment not to produce the fusel byproducts... kind of a perfect food

[edit on 22-2-2008 by kaferwerks]



posted on Feb, 22 2008 @ 03:46 PM
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reply to post by kaferwerks
 


Please elaborate on those weird alcohols. maybe why I got sick once?



posted on Feb, 22 2008 @ 04:11 PM
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There is no such thing as "fusel alcohol", BUT,...there IS half a dozen different alcohols that are produced in the fermenting process.

The term "Fusel" is an oil that taints the flavor of the alcohol at the end of the distillation run which smells and tastes like wet cardboard.

If you distill too hot too fast, you get the fusel oils tainting the whole distillation run.

Methanol being one of the nastiest is collected in the beginning of the distillation process and is discarded because methanol is what causes hangovers and headaches.

Here's a list of the different alcohols, and their boiling point.

Acetone 56.5C (134F)
Methanol (wood alcohol) 64C (147F)
Ethyl acetate 77.1C (171F)
Ethanol 78C (172F)
2-Propanol (rubbing alcohol) 82C (180F)
1-Propanol 97C (207F)
Water 100C (212F)
Butanol 116C (241F)
Amyl alcohol 137.8C (280F)
Furfural 161C (322F)

www.homedistiller.org...

Lots of good info there, enjoy.

Later,...... Ausable Bill



[edit on 22-2-2008 by Ausable_Bill]



posted on Feb, 22 2008 @ 07:22 PM
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reply to post by Ausable_Bill
 


What he said...fusel actual means something like bad...I believe it is german...It is a term used to describe the GROUP of bad alcohols/oils



posted on Feb, 22 2008 @ 07:29 PM
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Yeast is a living microscopic organism which converts sugar or starch into alcohol and carbon dioxide, which is why beer brewers, wine makers and bread bakers like it. Baker's yeast is what we use most often for leavening when cooking. Baker's yeast is either active dry yeast (where the yeast is alive but inactive due to lack of moisture) or compressed fresh yeast (where the yeast is alive and extremely perishable as a result). Brewer's yeast is a non-leavening yeast used in brewing beer and can be eaten as a food supplement for its healthful properties (as you would wheat germ), unlike baker's yeast which is used for leavening. Brewer's years has a bitter hops flavor. Nutritional yeast is similar to brewer's yeast, but not as bitter because it is grown on molasses. You should not use a live yeast (i.e. baking yeast) as a food supplement because it continues to grow in the intestine and uses up vitamin B instead of replenishing it.

Ingredient

Season: available year-round

How to select: Active dry yeast comes in envelopes, jars or bulk and can be regular or quick rising. Quick rising will half the time needed for rising to occur. Because you are purchasing live organisms, please note the expiration date on the package when using (fresh yeast will only last 1 week).

How to store: Always store in a cool, dry place, preferably the refrigerator (a must for fresh yeast), but bring to room temperature before using. Fresh yeast is extremely perishable and should be used within 1-2 weeks or date on package.

How to prepare: Yeast needs both a warm environment and food to grow. The process is often called "proofing the yeast." Yeast should be dissolved in warm water (100-110 degrees F), but not hot water or it will die. Sugar is usually added to "feed" and grow the yeast. You should see activity within 5 minutes, bubbling and expansion during yeast activation. If you see no activity, your yeast is too old, the water was too warm or too cold. Time to start over.

In response to the question about Brewer's yeast -

Yeast is added to growth media for the complex proteins, vitamins,
co-factors, hormones, and enzymes that come from the yeast cells. The yeasts
rarely grow in tea to much extent, but they are good for the additional food
resources they provide.

So, fungal or bacterial food? Both, depending on conditions.

I know that some tea makers think it's really important to add the yeasts,
but I'm not so sure. If the source of your compost seems a little iffy, then
yeast would be good to add. But if you have really good, alive, happy
compost, I don't think it is needed.

And is Brewers, or Bakers yeast better? Or maybe Champagne yeast? Or wine
yeast....

Depends on the compost, and the general health of the soil or the plant
surfaces you are applying the tea to. The more generally dead the soil, the
more recent the application of a toxic chemical, the more likely it would be
to need as many food resources as possible.

The healthier your soil and plant surfaces, the less need to add lots of
stuff, because the biology already present is making it already. Someday we;
ll have the methods and the knowledge so we can tell you which yeast you
need. Don't have that level of knowledge yet. We need everyone to be
testing, and figuring this out.

So, help us out by observing when addition of the yeast seems to make a big
difference, and when it doesn't. I'd love it if you all would let me know
your results. We need a central database of knowledge about teas, where we
track these bits and pieces of information and try to make sense of it all.
I'd like to have SFI serve in that capacity, if you would all like to keep me
up-to-date on what you are observing!

But in my opinion honestly i would collect lots of fruit and buy loads of sugar...

the yeast on the fruit turns the sugar in alcohol!

goodluck



posted on Feb, 22 2008 @ 07:39 PM
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A pound of sugar to a 2 pound of fruit if berries

a pound of sugar to a pound of apples to make cider wine

same for pears!

if you want something really potent parsnip wine!!!

2 pound of sugar to 3 pound of parsnips 12 months and airtight containers!! just make sure you have a valve to release the gas!



posted on Mar, 3 2008 @ 08:25 AM
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Illahee, Outstanding thread!
You originally asked what you should stock up on to brew.
The number 1 thing I would recommend you to have is actually a book.
It is: “THE HOME BREWERS COMPANION” by Charlie Papazian.
And/or “THE NEW COMPLETE JOY OF HOMEBREWING” same
Author. Charlie will show you everything you need to know to brew, store yeast, culture dormant yeast, propagate yeast, and how to make beer out of
Just about anything that can be fermented. Pumpkin ale anyone? Or how about a 5000 year old recipe from an original clay tablet written in cuneiform by ancient Sumerians! Or maybe someone in your group will get thirsty for a Mayan Indian honey mead flavored with bark of a tree. How to make brewing equipment from stuff you probably already have around the house. And much much more! I do not know Charlie (but I wish I did) nor do I have anything to do with the publishers. I have copies of these books in my survival kit.
For those who are concerned about consumption of alcoholic beverages in a survival situation, remember this important fact: Nothing microbial can live in beer that can kill you! “Relax, don't worry Have a homebrew”
Most good homebrew shops will have these books. If you want to know
More, type ZYMURGY in your web browser. Or look it up in your dictionary
(easy to find, it’s the last word in the dictionary)
“Beer is the proof that god loves us” Ben Franklin

[edit on 3-3-2008 by Zeptepi]



posted on Mar, 3 2008 @ 10:45 AM
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Yummy beer.
Being a college student I am broke and cant even afford the cheap beer most of the time. I am saving up to get a beer making kit. glad I came across this thread.



posted on Mar, 3 2008 @ 10:53 AM
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reply to post by Zeptepi
 


Great point. A couple more cheap and handy booklets that need to be on hand are : Making Homemade Wine by Robert Cluett and the Winemaker's Recipe Handbook By Raymond Massaccesi.

Both contain recipes for what you may find in the wild or grow in your garden. The last one being all recipes.

The 2 gallon beer batches are going ok. I have been using 1/3 of the can, yeast, DME etc. I have a prohibition era bottle capper so it has been getting caps and bottles as the big deal. The two gallon batch is just right for us since we don't drink much beer and serve it to friends for the most part. All have been well above what I expected in quality and not a single batch of grandpa's choke and cough so far. They have been equal to or better in quality that store brands at the top of the cooler.

On deck: Two more batches of Pilsner to heat and ferment.

Bottled:
Mexican Cervesa
Canadian Draft
American Pilsner
Cervesa/Czech lager hybrid


I'm trying my first round with wire bail and gasket closures. Our Brew store has beautiful wire bail Cobalt blue bottles and i'm planning on getting enough for the two gallon batch if the first ones turn out. It seems the new gaskets are very cheap, and one should be able to improvise new ones years down the road if needed. I have wire bail canning jars from back in the 20s that hold a seal so these should work out.

I have yet to get the floor corker and 2" corks, and have a French Cab going to bulk aging soon. Pinoit Nior is coming next, then the dark meaty reds, so I need to get on the ball there so they can start piling up and age properly.
There again wine can sit on the rack and once its bottled its done with no worries for years.



posted on Mar, 3 2008 @ 01:41 PM
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Ok, you talked me into it, I’m going to try wine. Those booklets sound good
I will have to get them.

I am glad that you have had good success with brewing. You must be a little more advanced then you let on if you are brewing lagers. Temp. control (fermentation) is a little more critical with them as opposed to ales, generally. Let me ask you, Are you brewing from a kit such as “Brewers Best” And if so, may I recommend that you keep that little pack of dry yeast in the box and get a culture of liquid yeast of the same style (i.e.: Yyeast pilsner) brew shops keep these in the cooler. This will make a good beer great. And be sure to boil for a full hour, I don’t care what the instructions in the kit say, this is important. It will greatly improve your brew. Also I keep a small amount of the liquid yeast in a sealed beer bottle in the fridge. When I want to brew a batch, I boil some wort and propagate it for the pitch. Much cheaper in the long-run and you can keep a good strain going for a long time. Bass Ale of Burton-on-Trent in England has used a “blow-off “system where the foamy head (kraeusen-head) is blown off the fermenting ale and is re-pitched into fresh wort in a continuous cycle
That has been un-interrupted for over 200 years. They have on of the purest
And most viable ale yeast in the world. Same thing can be done at home.
I have brewed hundreds of gallons of beer and now use a “corny’ (modified
Soda kegs) kegging system each will hold 5 gals of beer with Co2 tanks. Just got tired of the whole bottle hassle. The swing top bottles you got are
Cool, just keep them in a dark place, away from sun and fluorescent lights.
Light causes “skunky” beer. My gal has a million of those canning jars, I never thought about trying them. A shot glass (1oz.) of chlorine to 5 gallons of cool water will make a powerful sanitizer. I have tried 1-step, and it seems to work ok, but I am thrifty (read: cheap). I store my brewing equipment in a large Rubbermaid tote filled with this solution(not stainless steel)rinse with clean water… air dry…ready to go.

Well enough typin’ …..time to get brewin’



posted on Mar, 3 2008 @ 02:34 PM
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I think I had my one shot at Lager this year. The garage temp is fluctuating all to heck now so I doubt I could go cold till next year.

If your familiar with Beer wine is not such a great step to make. Just use a different fermenter that hasn't been hopped.

The Winemaker's recipe booklet is all at 1 gallon so its easy to ramp the recipe to the size fermenter and carboy you have handy, or just use a 4 liter glass wine jug with cork and airlock to go small. It covers meads and some ports as well as wild berries and garden wines like melon,tomato, parsnip, barley, corn, pumpkin and potato. Sake too.



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