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Old 03-04-2013, 07:15   #91
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Re: brewing beer aboard while cruising

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Originally Posted by Capt Rottnest View Post
Myself as a newbie to brewing I gotta ask - are you suggesting using a keg with CO2 bottle for carbonation, or bulk priming without gas and treating the keg as one big bottle?
Absolutely. Prime your Keg.
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Old 03-04-2013, 09:19   #92
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Re: brewing beer aboard while cruising

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Originally Posted by Capt Rottnest View Post
The impression I get (from forums and my own brew) is strictly following Coopers instructions gives a no body under hopped beer.
They all partial mash with kits.
There are two problems with the beer.

1) Malt balance. The malts do not balance the hop bitterness. The bitterness is thus harsh. This may be a function of the actual hops though, Australia is not known for their hops and I assume the hops are locally sourced.

2) There is a distinct lack of hop aroma. Being that the kit was not boiled, I would have expected more aroma.

They are not partial mash BTW, they are full extract.

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Originally Posted by Khagan1227 View Post
I'm not into keeping all that extra stuff on the boat. I'm using natural priming using disolved dextrose just before bottling. Since it works in 2 liter bottles soda, it should work in a tap-a-brew set up.

That said, I imagine you'd have to finish the keg a little faster to prevent the beer from going flat.
I used to have a full draft set... 18 kegs of beer in the basement. Full soda kegs take up WAY too much space on a boat. They are not a suitable option. This is why I have switched to tap-a-draft as well. Mini kegs may work well.

Beer in kegs will last a long long time. In fact, you can tap a beer drink whatever you want and then switch to another keg, storing the beer for aging or whatever. I have done this for over a year on certain beers that beenfit from aging.

The tap-a-draft is semi-permiable plastic so I don't expect the beer to last as long as in a stainless steel keg but who cares, its going to get drunk pretty quickly. If it goes bad... just make some more. I disagree with avoiding plastic as long as it is not regular 2 liter plastic bottles.

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Originally Posted by Khagan1227 View Post
I'm not into keeping all that extra stuff on the boat. I'm using natural priming using disolved dextrose just before bottling. Since it works in 2 liter bottles soda, it should work in a tap-a-brew set up.

That said, I imagine you'd have to finish the keg a little faster to prevent the beer from going flat.
I agree with most of what you say. The purpose of this thread was to judge the new kits and see if they have advanced at all.

I disagree that you can't make kits better. For example, you can use dry malt extract instead of sugar at all stages, and you can dry-hop the beer during the second stage, which will add aroma but no bitterness. Quite a few extract beers are winning competitions these days as the technology for extracting the malt has gotten better.
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Old 03-04-2013, 09:34   #93
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Re: brewing beer aboard while cruising

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Originally Posted by zboss View Post
There are two problems with the beer.

1) Malt balance. The malts do not balance the hop bitterness. The bitterness is thus harsh. This may be a function of the actual hops though, Australia is not known for their hops and I assume the hops are locally sourced.

2) There is a distinct lack of hop aroma. Being that the kit was not boiled, I would have expected more aroma.

They are not partial mash BTW, they are full extract.
Shoulda worded my post better. I meant to say, seems plenty homebrewers partial mash using Coopers extracts.
Anyway, I think Coopers do boil their ingredients before they start the extract process. Hop aroma may not survive that process though.
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Old 03-04-2013, 12:18   #94
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Re: brewing beer aboard while cruising

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Originally Posted by Khagan1227 View Post
I'm not into keeping all that extra stuff on the boat. I'm using natural priming using disolved dextrose just before bottling. Since it works in 2 liter bottles soda, it should work in a tap-a-brew set up.

That said, I imagine you'd have to finish the keg a little faster to prevent the beer from going flat.
If the beer is decent I've never had problems finishing a 5 gallon keg in time. Usually there is plenty of "Help", and you can't brew a batch fast enough.
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Old 03-04-2013, 12:37   #95
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Re: brewing beer aboard while cruising

For "All grain" my brewing equipment fits in the space of about 3-4 cases of beer. I get about 2 cases of beer out of each 5 gallon batch. You can make it even smaller if you use a technique called "Brew in a bag" and still want to brew with all grain.

If all you want to do is brew extract then it takes up even less space.
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Old 04-04-2013, 10:16   #96
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Re: brewing beer aboard while cruising

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Originally Posted by Capt Rottnest View Post
Shoulda worded my post better. I meant to say, seems plenty homebrewers partial mash using Coopers extracts.
Anyway, I think Coopers do boil their ingredients before they start the extract process. Hop aroma may not survive that process though.
Not likely to get much hop aroma out of an extract kit. Don't know about Coopers, but most of the big boys just use hop extract to flavor their brews. This mostly just gives hops bitterness with effectively no aroma and minimal other flavor compounds. You can however make a late addition of hops to the boil, or dry hop, and you will get more aroma compounds.

No need to boil an extract so you could just add some hops after you have heated the extract mixture and let is steep for a few minutes. This will extract mostly flavor and aroma compounds (bitterness compounds require higher temps to extract).
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Old 14-04-2015, 07:50   #97
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Re: brewing beer aboard while cruising

If all you really want to brew is a basic drinkable beer then here is a simple method for which all but one of the ingredients are available in the Carib.

As an experiement, a friend brewed a basic beer using malt drink as wort. This was a quick session beer for a party and it was not bad. This technique is very much like using an extract kit because malt drinks are basically unfermented wort. Like brewing with extract this avoids the mashing process and, unlike extract, malt drinks are readily available in the Carib.

We checked the specific gravity of a few different malt drinks and they were all in fermentable ranges for beer.

The only addition you would really want to make, which is not readily available, is hops. Fortunately the quantities of hops needed for a 5 gallon batch of beer is just a few ounces and this small amount could be easily imported or brought in by a guest.

To further simplify the brewing process you could boil the hops (necessary to extract the flavor compounds) in a smaller volume of wort (malt drink) then add the resulting hopped wort to the full volume of wort (adjust quantity of hops used to compensate for lower extraction efficiency of a low volume boil). Heat the full volume to pasteurize, let cool, pitch yeast, ferment.

Bread yeast is also readily available and can be used to brew beer.

If anyone wants to try this out, I'll be happy to help with the details.
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Old 16-04-2015, 03:16   #98
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Re: brewing beer aboard while cruising

It would be cool to brew beer while sailing.

As you tend to have a lot of free time on a boat it could be the perfect "hobby" to have while sailing.



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Old 16-04-2015, 13:07   #99
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Re: brewing beer aboard while cruising

Maybe we should add this thread to the "making a living while cruising" thread.
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Old 16-04-2015, 14:00   #100
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Re: brewing beer aboard while cruising

While brewing beer while cruising sounds like a fun idea IMO it is too complicated for real life situations. Here is another idea which works, is simple and does not require any add'l equipment.

Get 1.75L of vodka. Mid-grade is the best (Smirnoff, Absolute, Finlandia, etc i.e. in $20-30 range for 1.75L) as low grade vodkas tend to induce headaches and hangovers and high grade vodkas' taste will not be discernable in this recipe. Add about a pound of dry cranberries or other tangy berry from Trader Joe's. I prefer unsweetened but sweetened is fine as well. Also cut the peel from about two lemons, making sure you cut away the pith (white stuff) as it makes for a bitter taste. Combine all the ingredients, preferably in same vodka container (may need to imbibe some to leave enough room for the added ingredients) as it'll make everything less complicated. Let it steep for at least 2 weeks, longer if in colder climate. You will see the mixture getting very colorful with time. Shake periodically (I prefer turning the bottle upside down every few days. When the color stops darkening it's ready to be consumed. In the summer pour over ice or on those chilly fall evenings drink straight for added warmth. The berries dilute the proof so it's about 60-70 proof instead of 80. When you done drinking it do not throw the berries away. You may either eat them as shot replacements or add them to your favorite jello recipe for fortified "jello shots" (my favorite). But watchout - these jello shots tend to be stronger than they feel initially, with all the related consequences.
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Old 16-04-2015, 14:42   #101
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Re: brewing beer aboard while cruising

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Originally Posted by Island Time O25 View Post
While brewing beer while cruising sounds like a fun idea IMO it is too complicated for real life situations. Here is another idea which works, is simple and does not require any add'l equipment.

..... You may either eat them as shot replacements or add them to your favorite jello recipe for fortified "jello shots" (my favorite). But watchout - these jello shots tend to be stronger than they feel initially, with all the related consequences.
I agree, which is why I posted the ultra simple malt drink approach above. I'm heavily into brewing ashore and would not even consider attempting that level of brewing on a mid-sized boat. A megayacht maybe, if they would take me on as brew master with a big budget! ;-)


Jello shots...reminds me of a private jet stewardess I met in a pub just after making landfall in Bermuda years ago ...she could extract jello shots from the shot glass using nothing but her tounge...a very talented lady!
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