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Winter Warmer
#1
As promised here's the pics from my winter warmer I brewed yesterday. I based the recipe off the American brown ale style minus the chocolate malt. Gary was nice enough to sell me some of his special order Red X grain for the brew. The beer should get some nice ruby highlights to compliment the holiday season. I added the zest of 3 organic oranges, about 2 inches of fresh grated ginger and 3 cinnamon sticks to the boil at 5 minutes. I bittered with columbus to about 28 IBU's and whirlpooled 1oz of chinook hops at flame out for some resinous pine aroma and flavor. This beer is either going to be stellar or a stellar disaster. We'll see!

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#2
Looking good!!

How much grain will the cooler hold? I am considering a change a that is my deciding factor.
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#3
(10-21-2015, 11:03 AM)EBH_Admin Wrote: Looking good!!

How much grain will the cooler hold? I am considering a change a that is my deciding factor.

This is a 52qt Coleman Extreme I ordered online at Wal-Mart for about $25 and had it shipped free to the store for pick up. A couple of weeks ago I mashed 23lbs of grain for a RIS (5gal) without any problems and room to spare. According to this web site it will max out at 33lbs of grain at 1.25qt/lb or 28lbs at 1.5qt/lb mash thickness. I know Carson likes the 70qt cooler, but it's over twice the price and I would rarely need that big of a mash tun.
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#4
Rackers.org awesome url!! I agree with the smaller size. I have come to think it will be easier to add DME and reduce the base malt in the few times you are space restricted.
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#5
Just wanted to post a quick update. I wasn't happy with the color of the beer. It came out significantly lighter than I was expecting, even if it's a nice shade of red. The vision I have of a winter warmer is something a bit darker. I was 7 points off on my original gravity as well for unknown reasons. This dropped my abv down to 5.9%, just over a full percentage of the 7% I was shooting for.  I decided to make some belgian candi syrup after reading about it on this thread. There's something like 48 pages of discussion on the thread and it mainly just goes in circles. The only thing you need to read is the first page of comments to get the recipe and the reasoning why to use DAP instead of lemon juice or cream of tartar.

I've used Belgian Candi Syrup four or five times in the past,  so I know what I wanted was the dark D-180 syrup. I used a 2 gallon stock pot to boil 2 lbs of sugar, a cup of water and some yeast nutrient (DAP). I used an instant read thermometer to keep tabs on the temp. Sugar can go from hot to nuclear in about 10 seconds if you don't watch it. I dropped a small bit on some paper and recorded my notes as I went along. I've typed over them so you can read it better. Long story short with the two pounds of sugar I estimated I added about 14 points of gravity to my five gallon batch. this would have brought the SG up from 1.025 to 1.039 and it's currently sitting at 1.030. In other words I added 1.18% abv to the beer, mission accomplished.  As you see I also achieved the nice dark brown with reddish highlights I had pictured as my winter warmer. It took just under 2 hours to make the syrup, all said and done. One word of caution, boiling sugar at these temps turns it into sticky lava. Be careful.

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