possible tp make a super high abv beer with mr beer?

Discussion in 'Homebrewing' started by eckstg, Dec 25, 2012.

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  1. VikeMan

    VikeMan Meyvn (1,353) Jul 12, 2009 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    I'm guessing OP will care once he tastes it. But he and his buddies will choke it down, get smashed, declare that homebrew sucks, and never brew again. It's how our hobby gets a bad reputation.
  2. brewsader

    brewsader Initiate (0) Dec 7, 2012 New York
    Beer Trader

    you forgot about the splitting headache
    nozferatu46 likes this.
  3. HerbMeowing

    HerbMeowing Aspirant (270) Nov 10, 2010 Virginia

    Look...the brewer is new to the sport.
    Unless the goal here is to drive away new folks...maybe y'all could cut him a little slack.
    RyanLigeia, fuzzbalz and Jimjohson like this.
  4. Hotmetal1

    Hotmetal1 Aspirant (286) Feb 28, 2012 Mississippi
    Beer Trader

    I did the same thing (I read in my off time while in Afgahistan) and I am finishing off my first batch of homebrew, only have 5 bombers left, it turned out a lot better than I expected. I did a partical mash IPA. I stumbled a couple of times but I'm really proud of my first batch.
  5. mnstorm99

    mnstorm99 Initiate (0) May 11, 2007 Minnesota

    Wow, look at what I was missing.
    I started on a Mr. Beer with little knowledge, and poured my first "attempt" down the drain. I took the pale ale kit that came with the fermenter and added ginger...as if I was cooking and measuring was not very important. Needless to say I brewed 4-5 batches on the system and the rest were drinkable or even good. I made one more Mr. Beer ingredient kit to their specs and it was just ok. But the LBK fermented the other batches just fine when I used unhopped extracts and better yeast (all Nottingham at that point). I then grew tired of 2 gallon batches and moved on. I did revisit it later that first year for an all grain chocolate chile stout that I wished I had done 5 gallons of.

    The help from this site and some reading is what helped me, but I also have gone through a lot of trial and error to get there.

    To the OP, saying you don't care what it tastes like is never going to get you very far on this site as we do take our craft pretty seriously. We are generally helpful, but the tone was set quickly with what appeared to be disregard for the respect this site asks of our favorite beverage.

    With all of that said the mixture of an Oktoberfest and pale ale sounds disgusting, but it just might work. I brew a vast majority of session(able) beers (<5% ABV, many under 4%), and think you may find how complex and wonderful they can be if you open your mind.

    Good luck, and welcome to the hobby.
    barfdiggs, fuzzbalz and hopsandmalt like this.
  6. Jimjohson

    Jimjohson Initiate (0) Dec 26, 2012 Georgia

    this is on mrb site claims 8.7 abv. double up on this
  7. marquis

    marquis Crusader (744) Nov 20, 2005 United Kingdom (England)

    Flash back to when I began homebrewing. When I told people about it their only question was "How strong is it?".......for a long time homebrewing was associated with pretty awful stuff made strong for the sake of it.
  8. hopsandmalt

    hopsandmalt Initiate (0) Dec 14, 2006 Michigan

    I get that constantly.

    "Is it really strong?"
    "Is it really dark?"
    Or my personal favorite "I can't drink homemade beer, I tried one that my brother in law made once and it was way too thick?" WTF does that mean?
    Jimjohson likes this.
  9. eckstg

    eckstg Initiate (0) Aug 15, 2012

    well i was taking a shot in the dark when i made this thread. i was excited to have received the mr beer kit and after reading the directions surprised with the ease of use and brewing beer in general but was clueless with how easy better yet hard it is to brew somethin as strong as i asked about. for all i knew it was simple and i just put this thread out there before reading more about it in hopes it would be simple and get replies on how exactly to do it.

    well now it appears anything over 6% abv is a little difficult in less than 6 weeks time (meaning the 2-2-2 rule)? still surprised and happy to learn making good craft beer doesnt seem to be very hard other than brewing hops like tea and dissolving malt extracts in water and adding yeast to the mix to ferment is all it takes to make decent beer.

    now i know great beer is like makeing great chili and is alot more difficult. could anymore provide me with links on how to make good basic belgians and ipa's that should be as nice as some or maybe most you buy in local stores? i dont mind waiting 9-12months for it to mature as long as its worth it but i dont wanna get very sophisticated at this point either.

    i saw a gret video on youtube on making a 90 minute ipa that seemed simple enough but not sure where the abv usually ends up. i just ordered a hydrometer and test tube. when i made my mr beer wort i put roughly 8oz of it in the fridge before pitching the yeast in hopes that when i received my hydrometer later i could still get the og from it. can i still get the og from that 8 oz?

    my house is not well insulated and the cooler i have been keepink the lbk in since i made the wort has been in the upper 50s. all the days it has been sitting at that temp should i disregard and not start counting toward the 2 weeks fermentation until it stays in the high 60s? i did add 2 packs of booster to this batch along with 2 lme cans and 2 packs yeast. should i expect it to be sweetand not all convert to alcohol?
    jgluck likes this.
  10. eckstg

    eckstg Initiate (0) Aug 15, 2012

    OG: 1.075 (approx.) -- FG: 1.010 (approx.)
    Suggested lager time is 2 to 4 weeks.

    For all you techies out there hunched over a keyboard for hours on end, taking your dreams to a Wozniakian level (at least in your own mind), here's a great quaffable ale that will allow you to scale the potential of Moore's law with each hoppy swallow. Compile this tasty brew quick and effortlessly because with Mr.Beer, you never have to Debug.

    1 Can American Ale HME
    1 Can Diablo IPA HME
    1 Packet Dry Brewing Yeast (under lid of standard HME)
    1 Packet Craft Series Dry Brewing Yeast (under lid of craft HME)
    1 Packet Centennial Pellet Hops
    1 Packet Columbus Pellet Hops
    1 Muslin Hop Sack
    1 Packet No-Rinse Cleanser

    is mr beer full of bs with this kit? if not i wonder what items would be needed to buy from midwestsupplies.com to clone this kit at a better bargain?
  11. VikeMan

    VikeMan Meyvn (1,353) Jul 12, 2009 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader


    You really need to understand the information there before anyone can tell you anything about brewing specific styles that will be useful to you. Otherwise, everything will be out of context.
  12. SFACRKnight

    SFACRKnight Meyvn (1,105) Jan 20, 2012 Colorado
    Beer Trader

    Halloween beer idea... carmel apple and razorblade stout...
    NiceFly likes this.
  13. kjyost

    kjyost Meyvn (1,175) May 4, 2008 Manitoba (Canada)

    To me this looks like it should do a decent job, but the Dead Ringer IPA kit form Northern Brewer makes a good beer similar to Two-Hearted. The nice thing is that with a Mr. Beer you only need to split it in half.

    I agree you should fully read "How to Brew", but if all you do is buy that kit, follow the directions and keep the fermentation temperature under 70F, you'll make a good beer. You can dry hop in your Mr. Beer, but should buy an extra pack of US-05 yeast for your second half batch. Maybe making a batch or two will make you want to learn more about the science & art of brewing.
    Jimjohson likes this.
  14. Jimjohson

    Jimjohson Initiate (0) Dec 26, 2012 Georgia

    That would mean the brother in law grabbed the wrong bottle that was the syrup. :wink:
  15. Jimjohson

    Jimjohson Initiate (0) Dec 26, 2012 Georgia

    I've been wondering how that worked as the northern brewer recipes are 5gal and my mrb lbk is 2gal16oz. Was going to run a couple mrb kits then move up in the world but the lbk solves a lot of space problems. Will a straight split work or will it be to much?
  16. kjyost

    kjyost Meyvn (1,175) May 4, 2008 Manitoba (Canada)

    From what I have read here and my knowledge of brewing a straight split will be fine.
    Jimjohson likes this.
  17. HerbMeowing

    HerbMeowing Aspirant (270) Nov 10, 2010 Virginia

    Simply split the 5G kit in half.

    The MrB LBK can ferment a 9-L batch size (2.4G)
    Ignore the 8-L fill line.
    Rack from your kettle until the volume reaches the bottom of the second 'stave' which is close to the top of the QUART marking.
    Jimjohson likes this.
  18. Jimjohson

    Jimjohson Initiate (0) Dec 26, 2012 Georgia

    Like you I am not well insulated but I'd just leave a 40watt bulb on in the closet and make sure to cover the lbk so the light won't get to it. this should supply enough heat to keep you closet slightly warmer than the room. Like you this is my first batch and I think it got cold enough it might be done carbonating, but I'll wait the 2 weeks . Next batch I'm trying this, worth a shot. Put thermometers in the closet to monitor.
  19. GreenKrusty101

    GreenKrusty101 Crusader (724) Dec 4, 2008 Nevada

    I'm not a Buddhist, but am starting to feel I haven't suffered enough because I by-passed the Mr. Beer phase
  20. Jimjohson

    Jimjohson Initiate (0) Dec 26, 2012 Georgia

    Everybody's gotta start somewhere.
  21. GreenKrusty101

    GreenKrusty101 Crusader (724) Dec 4, 2008 Nevada

    True, but everyone doesn't have to take the long arduous route
  22. Jimjohson

    Jimjohson Initiate (0) Dec 26, 2012 Georgia

    Well your probably right but, consider this(with apologies to R.E.M.). Never haveing been around anyone who brews and comming off a year and a half unemployed. I'd have never spent the money on an mrb or anything else on just the chance I'd like it. Up shot is it is a gift.(old saying, haveing to do with gift horses and mouths)So, with nothin' better to do, gave it a shot turns out it's fun and interesting. (who knew?) As stated I don't know anybody else brewing so this is a natural place to ask questions especially if your thinking about expanding your horizons. This is bound to be true of a lot of folks. I am reading at howtobrew.com but it don't answer equipment questions like I ask. Or rather it might and I just don't get it.(I ain't the sharpest tool in the shead) To quote Bengi in "The Mummy" "Unfortunately, more is required." so there will probably be more questions.
    Knowing how these posts can be misunderstood. The above is not in anger it is kind of an apology by way of explanation and a couple sad attempts at humor.
  23. GreenKrusty101

    GreenKrusty101 Crusader (724) Dec 4, 2008 Nevada

    Yeah...I must say it is easy to get misinterpreted in these threads. My point was never that Mr. Beer was bad or could not make good beer....shit, it is only a plastic vessel (it's what's inside that counts). My frustrations are with posters who don't seem to give a shit and actually revel in that fact.

    Welcome to homebrewing...it's a lot of fun. : )
    Jimjohson and hopsandmalt like this.
  24. Jimjohson

    Jimjohson Initiate (0) Dec 26, 2012 Georgia

    Thanks, and I agree had a drill sgt tell me once "Ignorance is not a sin, but choosing to remain so is." :wink:
    GreenKrusty101 likes this.
  25. eckstg

    eckstg Initiate (0) Aug 15, 2012

    checked my mrbeer wort yesterday by shining a flashlight on it and could see some fermentation going on inside. In the room the lbk sits in its cooler up until yesterday kept a temp of 55 degrees. i figured this may be too low and moved it to another room in the cooler that it keeps a temp of 62 degrees. Better to keep it at 62 or 55?

    Should receive my hydrometer shortly and still have 8oz of the wort in a coke bottle in the fridge before i pitched the yeast in hopes after i receive my hydrometer i could still get an accurate og reading from it. is this possible?

    Since i added 2 packs of booster to this batch along with 2 cans lme and 2 packs yeast, when fermentation ends and i give it a taste if its sweet or if i check the fg with the hydrometer and it seems low for the mix should i let it ferment longer and possibly add more yeast or activator or somethin?
  26. VikeMan

    VikeMan Meyvn (1,353) Jul 12, 2009 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    www.howtobrew.com Chapter 9, page 2

    Yes, but let it warm up to about 60F before taking the reading.

    Please read "How to Brew."
    nozferatu46 likes this.
  27. Jimjohson

    Jimjohson Initiate (0) Dec 26, 2012 Georgia

    Still going for 12? I'm only a few weeks ahead of you, saturday is the end of my first brew's 4th week. If you don't mind I want to use this as a pop quiz to see if I 've learned anything reading.
    1) according to the instructions that came with mine 68-76
    2) the OG question: yes
    3) No amount of reading will help here but, going with your chili analogy. I think it's time to "proof" the pot. Let it finish fermenting.(because we are both beginners I would wait one day past when you think it's done to try to prevent "bottle bombs".) continue on with next 2 steps. Now you could tase it after carbination, step 2, but better to wait 2 weeks.(everybody knows chili's better on the second day.) Like good chili it's going to take several pots to get it just right.
  28. eckstg

    eckstg Initiate (0) Aug 15, 2012

    Received my hydometer and after wathing this video on youtube i did my very first hydrometer test. the wort i saved before pitching the yeast had a reading of 1.066.

    The wort that has been sitting in the mr beer keg for 15 days now i tested and the reading came out as 1.053. After doing the math between the difference i came to a level of 1.7 abv. The wort in the mr beer keg has a layer/cloud of bubbles sitting at the top i see when i shine a flashlight against it. It has been sitting at the temperature range's between 50-55 degrees.

    Should i allow it to keep fermenting more weeks and be ok? Is it useless? The wort consist of 2 malt extract cans ,2 alcohol booster packs & 2 mr beer yeast packets.

    Thanks for this reference VikeMan! I have actually printed this book and plan to read it soon woking it in to read as much as possible!

    Heres the 90 minute ipa video i refereed to previously that appears simple enough to make a decent craft ipa from. Does this appear to be a good ipa receipe?
  29. VikeMan

    VikeMan Meyvn (1,353) Jul 12, 2009 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    50-55F is too cold for most ale yeasts, and probably explains the slow fermentation. Not knowing exactly what strain you used, I'd get it up into the mid-60's.
    kjyost likes this.
  30. eckstg

    eckstg Initiate (0) Aug 15, 2012

    It appears by the weather here in north alabama thats where the range should be. Just let it sit and do another test in maybe a week? or 2 ?
  31. VikeMan

    VikeMan Meyvn (1,353) Jul 12, 2009 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    That's what I'd do. Also, most homes have areas that are warmer than others. If you can move to a warmer spot, I'd do it, rather than relying on the weather. <I'm trying to picture living in my house at 50-55F average temp. Nope. Can't do it.>
  32. eckstg

    eckstg Initiate (0) Aug 15, 2012

  33. eckstg

    eckstg Initiate (0) Aug 15, 2012

    well since my worts abv was so low after 15 days of fermentation sitting inbetween 50 to 60 degrees i found somewhere to move it where it should stay between 60 to 70 degrees and likely 65 degree for the majority of the time.I stopped by a local natural food store also and got a pack of muntons yeast and added it to the wort in case the mr beers yeast might not have been good anymore. Im gonna wait 7 days from today now and test the gravity again and keep my fingers crossed.
  34. Jimjohson

    Jimjohson Initiate (0) Dec 26, 2012 Georgia

    I live in west centeral Ga I have used an incandescent light bulb to heat a closet. Same idea as an incubator. Just throw a towel over the lbk to keep light out.
  35. FATC1TY

    FATC1TY Moderator (1,229) Feb 12, 2012 Georgia
    Subscriber Beer Trader

    Try it out and see. Fermentation should pick up as it warms. If your reading is 1.066, I'd guess that your beer will be around... 6-6.5%. Not the 12% beast you wanted, but atleast you see how tough just getting what you have there was so far.
  36. eckstg

    eckstg Initiate (0) Aug 15, 2012

    thanks for tip! those heat belts and temperature controllers at midwestsupplies look great for this situation. lukily i have a friend whose house stays around 65 for this situation and dont need to resort to those just yet. i got a mechanics light that plugs in a 110 made to hang under a car hood ill try if i have to try here again this winter before i get a belt and controller. thanks!
  37. eckstg

    eckstg Initiate (0) Aug 15, 2012

    what i am curious of is if its between 6-6.5% after waiting 7 more days shouldi accept that or try another week to see if its finished fermenting?
  38. Jimjohson

    Jimjohson Initiate (0) Dec 26, 2012 Georgia

    The trouble light should work. I bought one of those kind of lights with the squeeze clamp from k marts like you'd use to light a shed. Seems to work.
  39. FATC1TY

    FATC1TY Moderator (1,229) Feb 12, 2012 Georgia
    Subscriber Beer Trader

    When it's done, it's done. You won't be able to tell ABV from your hydrometer. You will have to get the gravity of where it's at now, and do the math.

    If you check it, and then check it in 3 days and it hasn't moved, it's done. Adding anything extra isn't going to raise your ABV.
  40. eckstg

    eckstg Initiate (0) Aug 15, 2012

    when i stopped by local store to get the yeast, I could not use my check card for such a small purchase so i decided to buy the ingredients for the 90 minute ipa using a mr beer fermenter from the youtube video i posted above. Its receipe is 1 lb dry amber, 3.3lbs liquid amber malt extract, 1 pack us05 yeast, 1oz nugget hop pellets,1oz chinook hop pellets, & 1 oz cascade pellets.

    I got everything right from memory except for the chinook pellets and instead got galena. Is galena for flavor or aroma? Will it not taste right in the IPA receipe above?

    After hearing i could use my 2 gallon water cooler as a fermenter i decided to go ahead and make my wort instead of waiting on the first batch i made to finish.

    I decided to go without the muslin sacks and added the pellets directly in ( i think this is referred to as commando?).When i was done with my boil i had to stop since it was a work night and i was up way past my regular bedtime. I added the wort to the 2 quarts cool water in the cooler and mixed and put the lid on and went to bed.

    When i got home the following day from work i took 8 oz out of the cooler to test with my hydrometer to get the og before pitching the yeast. I then pitched the yeast mixed and put away. A day later the 8 oz had alot of residue in the bottom and im guessing that means theres probaly tons in the cooler now while its fermenting.

    Wish i didnt go commando now.i filtered the 8oz with some coffee filters untilthey kept clogging so i cut a peice off of a muslin sack and made it my filter and finallygot it filtered and there was alot of gunk in just that 8oz.

    Is this batch salvageable by filtering after fermentation before bottle conditioning? If this is possible what is the best items to filter with?

    The original gravity of this batch was at 1.110 which was surprising to me that it was higher than the batch i made above using 2 packets mr beer abv booster.
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