Glad I got it on sale
Glad I got it on sale. Expect to finally harvest only 3 gallons.
Well, the good first – Kit shipped/delivered promptly, the instructions are clear, hit the OG right on, had healthy Krausen after 12 hours with the suggested Wyeast, and today the FG at 1.014, is better than the recipe predicted. I steeped in 6 gallons starting at 162 degrees, cooling to 151 degrees with no heat on, for 20 minutes.
However - the not so good: the AIH grain bags are extremely loosely knit, so much particulate matter is released from the bag during steeping, especially if flaked grains are in the bill like this one. Think Oatmeal cereal. In your wort. After the boil, when pumping thru a Blichmann Thermy to the primary fermenter, the flow stopped after only three gallons. The pot bazooka, and the Thermy were badly clogged. I can scrape the bazooka, but not the plate chiller, and after nearly an hour of running the poor pump, only 4.1 gallons were transferred. Later, when the yeast got active, the carboy looked like a pot of hot-sour soup with circulating chunks of Tofu – the coagulated grain residue.
I just transferred to a secondary after three weeks, and again LOTS of trub unavoidably accompanied the beer, and I had to leave another half gallon behind with the trub when big chunks started to accompany the beer again. I expect to lose another half gallon for the same reason when kegging. So a 5 gallon batch to 3 gallons in a keg = poor economics.
I have two more AIH kits with the same grain bags, and I plan to steep in 3 gallons in a separate pot, and filter the initial steepings thru a t-shirt TWICE, into the brew-pot. Gotta keep all the debris out somehow, maybe this will work? Or nylon bags? Or both filtering and finer mesh bags?
Reviewed by: Richard A Brown