Each flavoring is packed in a 4-ounce bottle with recommended usage for beer is on the label. For wine, we recommend adding to taste.
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10/20/2008 -- I made a batch of beer using Muntons American Style Light Beer. I put the packet of yeast on top, let it sit for ten
minutes and stired it in.It has been 17hrs later and no bubbles or fermentation has started.What to do now?
Response From The Home Brew Store Dot Com: When you have yeast that doesn't start within 24 hours of pitching, it could be any of several problems. The yeast may have been too old. The temperature of the wort may have been too hot. There may not have been sufficient nutrients or sugars for the yeast to start. The best fix is to get a fresh yeast packet, and start it in a pint of sugar water at a temperature between 75 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Add a teaspoon of yeast nutrient, and let the mixture sit in a covered jar overnight. You should see foam on top the next morning, indicating active yeast. At this point you can add it to the wort and be relatively sure it will show activity in the wort within 12 to 24 hours. If after 24 hours there is not activity, then you may have an unintentional ingredient (such as cleanser or disinfectant) in the wort that is killing the yeast.
1/19/2008 -- I have a 3.3 lb. can of your CBW malt extract("golden Light") that I purchased 3 years ago. My questions: One, is this still usable without much flavor lost, and two, should I add hops for a "true beer" flavor? Thanks
Response From The Home Brew Store Dot Com: Hi Ray. An excellent question. I've brewed "old" malt several times with mixed results. Check the can. If it's not rusting around the seams, and it isn't starting to bulge (any more than the normal bulging that always seems to accompany liquid malts) the malt should be safe to brew. Yes, I would add hops depending on the recipe you are trying to emulate. For American light lager, I recommend an ounce of Cascade or Northern Brewer for 30 minutes in the boil. You would need to check a recipe for other styles as they are too numerous to list here (I use the HBD database at http://hbd.org/brewery/gambmug/gambmug.shtml)
What I have found in my own experience is that the older the malt is, the stronger the change in flavor. You will experience some loss of flavor overall with a slight addition of the harsher after tastes. The oldest malt I ever brewed from a can was just over 7 years old and I could detect a slight tinny flavor in the aftertaste of the beer, although the overall flavor was still decent.
5/22/2007 -- What is the best type of sugar to put into the wort?
Response From The Home Brew Store Dot Com: Corn sugar is better than table sugar, as table sugar tends to give the finished beer a cidery after taste. Honey is also a good sugar.
7/28/2006 -- I am having trouble finding Minute Maid strawberry raspberry juice. Is there a good subsitute like any strawberry or raspberry juice? I can easily find a Lawyers frozen strawberry kiwi juice, or every other kind of Minute Maid like berry blend.
Response From The Home Brew Store Dot Com: Absolutely, any substitution is good with certain considerations. We recommended Minute Maid because the guy who wrote up the recipe said it worked for him. We found it available at Food4Less. But you can substitute other brands, or even other flavors with the following caveats:
-- make sure whichever brand you use has no preservatives or stabilizers. Watch out for the words "potassium", "sorbate", "sodium", and "benzoate" on the ingredients list, as well as the phrase "added to preserve freshness".
-- Many fruit juice concentrates use apple or pear juice as a base and only flavor it with the label fruit. If apple juice or pear juice are listed as the first items in the ingredient list, this will tilt the flavor of the finished product toward apple/pear and away from the berry flavor.
-- Ocean Spray is an excellent choice for most juices, as they use no preservatives and have a high percentage of actual berry juice.
-- Fresh or frozen fruit can always be substituted for juice or concentrate. To get the equivalent of a quart of supermarket juice, you would need between 3 and 4 pounds of berries (the liquid volume will be less, but the concentration in the whole fruit is greater.)
-- The final option would be to look for just a strawberry juice and just a raspberry juice, and mix-n-match them to make up the quart volume.
5/3/2006 -- Priming 5 gallons of beer with honey instead of corn sugar for better head sounds great, but how much honey would I use?
Response From The Home Brew Store Dot Com: A good rule of thumb when priming is 1-1/3 cup DME = 1 cup sugar = 3/4 cup honey. You can use that conversion and adjust your honey amount for whatever priming agent your recipe calls for. I generally recommend between 2/3 cup and 3/4 cup honey for most beers.
4/17/2006 -- When selecting a priming agent, why does honey give a better head retention than malt or corn sugar?
Response From The Home Brew Store Dot Com: There are a couple reasons. First, honey is made up of complex sugars that take the yeast a longer time to break down. As a result, the carbonation profcess is slower resulting in a more thoroughly absorbed CO2. Second, honey contains a large concentration of acids and proteins that are missing or available in smaller amounts from other priming agents. The protein content in particular provides more body when used as a fermentable, and consequently more body in the head when used to prime with. Finally, stir sugar or dry malt extract into water and see how thick it gets... then look at honey - the high viscosity translates directly to the quality of the head in the finished product.
4/17/2006 -- Have you ever heard of chili pepper beer? Do you have a recipe?
Response From The Home Brew Store Dot Com: Yes, I have heard of it, and in fact have sampled several. I have come to the personal conclusion that chili peppers are to be enjoyed WITH a beer rather than IN a beer, but hey - who am I to judge?
Try this recipe. Substitute a jalapeno for the green chili for a more "vibrant" taste.
1/2-lb crystal malt
3.3-lb light LME
3.3-lb amber LME
2-oz cascade hops
1 lb roasted green chili
1 packet ale yeast
Crack the grains and place them in a gallon of cool water. Apply heat to slowly raise to a boil. At the start of the boil, remove the grains and add the LME, honey, and hops. Boil for one hour. Pasteurize chili peppers by soaking them in 160F-170F water. At the end of the boil, strain the wort and the chili peppers (with the water) into a fermenter and add chilled water to bring up to 5 gallons.
4/17/2006 -- Just curious... is there a natural way to make green beer? ...without adding the food coloring?
Response From The Home Brew Store Dot Com: My partner and I tried for years to produce a naturally green beer with horrid results. The closest we got was a green champagne, when we pushed it through copper tubing in a jockey box on a really hot day (the acid in the champagne caused copper to leech into the beverage, rendering it really nasty tasting and somewhat poisonous).
We did find one article online that claimed to have a "green" beer. Imagine our surprise when we found out that "green" meant it was brewed in a solar-powered brewery.
4/17/2006 -- I want to try malting my own barley. What would you suggest as a good resource?
Response From The Home Brew Store Dot Com: There are a number of good resources on the market. The magazine "Brew Your Own" has published some great articles in the past - look for them online at byo.com. Some good books include "Malts and Malting" by Dennis E. Briggs, which talks about it from the commercial perspective, but includes a great section on chemistry/biology and another on methods; "The Homebrewer's Garden" by Joe and Dennis Fisher has a 30-page chapter on growing and malting your own grains; "The Biotechnology of Malting and Brewing" by James S. Hough, which has several chapters on the malting process.
1/4/2006 -- A friend gave me one of your Cooper Stout kits for Xmas, and I'll be brewing my first ever batch of beer with it. However, the instructions that came with it don't say anything about boiling it... they just say to add boiling water to it and then fill the fermenter the rest of the way with cold tap water. Is this the correct way to use these kits?
Response From The Home Brew Store Dot Com: Coopers makes an entire line of what they call "no boil" kits. In truth - nearly every malt extract could be billed as "no boil" because the mashing process (converting starches to sugars) is already done and the malt was already boiled down to create the extract.
However, I have found through practice that if I don't boil at least 15-20 minutes in 4-6 quarts of water, I never get the malt liquidy enough to completely mix with the water. The result then is that the malt sinks to the bottom of the fermenter, and I don't get complete fermentation. By boiling, I ensure that the malt is evenly distributed in the fermenter, and the end-result tastes much better.
There are some people who also contend that you should always boil because boiling, even for a few minutes, kills all bacteria; and that ensures that you start with a sterile batch.
I recommend boiling 6 quarts of water, remove from the burner, add the malt, stir until liquified, then return to the burner for 15 minutes. Watch the pot, and stir constantly in the beginning, because the malt will foam up. Use a big pot (16-quarts or larger) to avoid boil-over. As the foam rises, you can also lift the pot off the burner and it will subside. This is called "hot break". After boiling, I recommend adding at least a gallon if chilled water to your fermenter. Then pour in the boiled wort (beer that isn't beer yet), then fill up with more chilled water. That lowers the temperature of the beer so the yeast isn't shocked. Also, for a five-gallon batch, I usually fill to 5 gallons plus a quart. You will lose a little liquid at the end when you siphon the beer out, since there will be a yeast sediment layer in the bottom of the fermenter that you will leave behind.
8/20/2005 -- Can your fruit extracts be used to flavor tea drinks?
Response From The Home Brew Store Dot Com: Yes, they can; although there is not a recommended concentration available for beverages other than beer/ale. The size container we show in our store flavors 5 gallons of beer/ale. You would have to "add to taste" for other beverages.
7/28/2004 -- Do you sell Coopers home brew starter packs with all the essential gear for brewing and bottling etc?
Response From The Home Brew Store Dot Com: We carry the True Brew or Brewers Best starter pack for equipment. Both have all the equipment you need to get started (except a brew pot.)
We do carry a complete line of Coopers liquid-malt ingredient kits as well as Coopers unhopped liquid malt extracts. Look in the section labeled 'malts, grains, and extracts', and select "Beer Kits by Brandname" for the Coopers kits. Select "Malt Extracts" to find the unhopped LME.
6/6/2004 -- Can the natural fruit flavors be added to snow cones to make them taste like natural flavors?
Response From The Home Brew Store Dot Com: I don't see any reason why the natural flavors couldn't be used for that purpose. I wouldn't be exactly sure how much to use for the right balance of flavor, since each bottle is enough to flavor about 5 gallons of beer. I assume that by watering it down a bit, it would work okay. It would probably take some trial and error to get the flavor mix to where you'd want it.
Sorry I don't have a better answer than that, but I may decide to try it now that you've brought it up. Hmmm... now that I think about it, I wonder if I could do the same thing with the soda pop extracts.....
6/4/2004 -- Can these flavors just be added to wine to make wine coolers?
Response From The Home Brew Store Dot Com: Yes, they can be added to wines, and I have customers who routinely use them to flavor meads. However, I haven't tried making coolers from them myself.
As a side note, we do carry a new line of 28-day wine cooler kits if you do your own brewing. Look in the "wines and coolers" category for Orchard Breezin'.
7/1/2003 -- I recently dug out my home brew equipment stored since 1994. Inside were two cans of Muntons light malt extract. Whadya think? Should I try to use it?
Response From The Home Brew Store Dot Com: I can say from experience that it is possible to use really old malt when brewing. I can also say that while it works, it will not produce the same product that fresh malt would. Here are some things to look for: Is there any rust or corrosion around the edge of the can (where the rim meets the side)? If so, there may be oxidation of the liquid malt. Is the can bulging at all? If so, bacteria may have gotten in. While the bacteria can be killed by boiling, if it included wild yeast you may have some off-flavor from wild fermentation. If you open the can, is there any "solid" material floating on top of the liquid? If so, you may have crystalization. This can be cleared up by boiling. Finally, just being in contact with the sides of the can for that long may lend a slightly metallic taste to the malt. This can be partially overcome by blending the malt with fresh malt in a batch, or covered by brewing a high-hop beer or a clove beer.
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In any case, boil the malt in a gallon of water for at least 30 minutes before adding to any batch you brew, just to minimize the effects of any of the negatives. Also, be prepared for a finished beer that doesn't necessarily taste as good as it might with fresh malt.
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