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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
 
General
 
Microbrew Kit
Do I need a brewing license?   Why do I need a Microbrew Kit?
Why do people homebrew?  
Is it difficult to brew?   How to remove stubborn scum inside fermenter
     
Fermentation
 
Beer Concentrate
How to ensure a successful fermentation?   Can I brew a batch in less than 23 Litres?
How to keep my fermenter cool?   How to improve my beer?
There is no bubbling.   If part of malt can used .Can I keep the rest?
Should I do a secondary Fermentation?   All my beer seems to taste the same.
Can I increase the alcohol level?   What is IBU?
Fermentation stopped but my FG is still high    
What is dry hopping?  
Looks and Taste
    How to get beer head?
    Beer taste sour
     
     
General (FAQs)
Do I need a brewing license?

When homebrewing started in 2004, licensing was required. But in early 2008, it was removed. For more information, go to customs website.

 

Why do people homebrew?

There are many reasons and advantages in brewing your own beer. The most common is cost saving. Since there is no alcohol tax involved, every pint of your own cost no more than a dollar, compared to paying $4 in shops. The choice of beer is almost limitless. Not only brewing is fun, beer never tasted better before.

 

 

Is it difficult to brew?

Brewing is easy. With the Microbrew Kit, there is step-by-step instructions and DVD demo.

Microbrew Kit (FAQs)
Why do I need a Microbrew Kit?

The Microbrew Kit is the most comprehensive beginner kit. Designed to ensure that you have a successful first brew. Brewing should be simple and fun. A few simple steps in making great tasting beer without being bogged down by intricacy of brewing science.

Beer concentrate (or hopped malt), Brewing Sugar and Carbonation Drops make up your basic Ingredients. Use up all of it each time to get 23 Litres beers of 4.5% alcohol level. Do not use partially.

How many times can I reuse the pet bottles?

Pet bottles can be reused many times, if maintained properly. The caps work fine even after seal has been broken first time. Change seal cap if you suspect leakage. Always rinse your bottle thoroughly after each pour to prevent bacteria growth.

 

How to remove stubborn scum inside fermenter?

Don't we all hate washing? Especially those difficult ring of scum stucked on the inside fermenter. Hard scrubbing will leave scratches that eventually harbour bacteria or beer spoilers.
One simple method is by using hot water. This will soften the scum, making easy removal.

 

 
 
Fermentation (FAQs)
How to ensure a successful fermentation?

What you do before the start of fermentation will determine pretty much the outcome of your beer.

1 Sanitisation - Make sure all equipment which come in contact with the wort is well sanitised. Sterilisation is diferent from sanitization. Sterilisation is the complete removal of bacteria which is virtually impossible in homebrewing. On the other hand, sanitising is a process of reducing 'beer spoilers' so that the yeast could take control before those nasty germs have a chance to make their presence felt.

2. Aeration - Make sure you get as much air (oxygen) into the wort as possible. The yeasts need all the oxygen it can get to grow and multiply in numbers (aerobic) in order to convert all the sugar and maltose into CO2 and (much needed) alcohol. Otherwise, you will end up with high finishing gravity and a beer with a sweet aftertaste.

3. Temperature - Although Coopers yeast is able to ferment at high temp (up to 30C) with reconsiderably good result. Tradition brewing temperature has always been recommended to be between 21C - 27C.

4. Ingredients - Good beer comes from quality and fresh ingredients. We import all our beer kit direct from Coopers Brewery and kept in cold storage. Freshness guaranteed.

 

How to keep my fermenter cool?

There are a few easy ways to keep that tropical heat out of our fermenter.

1. Evaporation - Drape a wet towel round the fermenter and set it in a tub of water. The towel will wick up more water as it vaporize, thus cooling the fermenter. Add some ice and use a fan to blow at it, will certainly bring the temperature down a few notches.

2. Air-condition - It may bring the cost up slightly but certainly worth a try.

3. Fermenter Chiller - Electrical cooling that keep your fermentation at constant 21 degree celsius.

4. Cooler Box - Powered by ice, this is your perfect solution to temperature control.

There is no bubbling?

With Coopers yeast, fermentation should commence within 24 hrs. If you do not see any bubbling, check the wort - If foaming is seen throught the lid (sign of fermentation) then there isn't much to worry about. The lid may be lose or rubber gasket had already worn out. Replace the gasket and tighten the lid.

 

Should I do a secondary fermentation?

Secondary fermentation does take place in the bottle. However, racking the beer to another fermenter or glass carboy for about 2 weeks has many advantages. It allows the beer to clear when suspended yeasts settle out. At the same time, these remaining yeasts continue to 'work on the beer' until it matures - a process called conditioning. This is also a chance for us to enhance aroma through dry hopping.

The down side of transfering into another container is oxidation. Ensure that no splashing takes place during transfer and keep the end of hose below the level of beer. Oxidation causes staling - an undesirable beer factor.

 

Can I increase the alcohol level?

We can get more alcohol in the beer by adding more brewing sugar. 1% ABV with every 500gm of sugar. However, this is not recommended because it will alter the balance of flavour which every can of Coopers concentrate distinctively contains.

 

Fermentation stopped but my FG is still high

If you FG read 1.016 or more over 2 days, you're probably experiencing a 'stuck fermentation. This happened when yeast flocculate (settle to the bottom) too early. Common reasons are insufficient wort aeration, incorrect temp when yeast is pitched or even contamination. Stir up the yeast and wait for a few more days. Pitch another pack of yeast as a last resort.

 

What is dry hopping

Dry hopping is adding of hops after primary fermentation has completed. Usually during the 2 weeks of secondary fermentation in another carboy. Simply fill 1/2 oz (14g) of hop pellets in a steep bag and drop it in the beer. Dry hopping is known to be more effective in enhancing aroma than late hopping (last 5 min of boil).

 

 
Beer Concentrate (FAQs)
Can I brew less than 23 Litres?

The Coopers hopped malt 1.7kg has been specially designed to make 23 litres of beer with the right flavour and bitterness. However, some recipes may ask for less water to be used.

Stout is usually preferred with greater bitterness and strength. Brewing to 18 litres or less makes stouter stout. Caution: less water means higher OG. Make sure your wort is well aerated and pitch 2 packs of yeast if possible.

How to improve my beer?

There are many ways which you can improve your beer after you have master the basic principles of brewing.

Use better Brewing Sugar - Enhancer 1 contains dextrose and maltodextrin for better results. Enhancer 2 contain dried malt, dextrose and maltodextrin for body improvement

Alternatively, replace brewing sugar with malt - Use 1.5kg of light, amber or dark malt extract instead of 1 kg sugar will make an all-malt brew. In doing that, use Munton Premium Gold Yeast for the job. Significant overall improvement to your beer.

Add hops - We can boost flavour and aroma to our beer by adding hops. Methods: Boil 1/2 litre of water and steep hops for 10 - 15 min; Remove hop bag and add 'hop tea' into wort before topping up with cold water.

Yeast - Different yeast strains yield different result. You are the brewmaster, try them all.

 

If part of can malt used. Can I keep the rest?

Yes. If the recipe call for partial can of plain malt to be added. You can cover the opening and keep it in fridge until next brew. However when reusing, make sure you boil it in water for at least 10 minutes.

 

All my beer seems to taste the same ?

A can of concentrate and 1 kg of brewing sugar can only subtlely bring out the style and taste of beer. Many people give up brewing because of this. We can't teach all about brewing in one day. We only hope you could hang in there long enough for us to show you what you can achieve. We can easily make a beer taste better than commercial but we can never beat our expectation. Also, do you realise we have never judged a beer until we start making one?

As a beginner, we try not to make a bad beer even if they taste the same. Least, you're getting the right techniques - the pre-requisite to making great beers!

 

What is IBU?

IBU - International Bittering Unit. A measure of beer bitterness. Normal beer ranges from 20 -40 IBU. Typically, Heineken has IBU between 20-25; Guiness Stout has more than 45 IBU.

 

 
 
Looks and Taste(FAQs)
How to get beer head?

Unfermentable sugar such as dextrin malt (carapil) and maltodextrin powder are tasteless carbohydrates that 'hang around' your beer, adding vicosity and head retention. Dissolve 100 - 200gm of maltodextrin together with all your malt and sugar.

 

Beer taste sour

It is not a good sign. Possibly contamination. Symtoms : 1.Late start to fermentation 2. Laggish fementation. Wild yeast could have gotten to the beer more than desired. But don't dump it yet. Some beer lose it's sourness over time.
1. Getting your wort to pitching temperature is very important so as to allow yeast to get control before bacteria does. Prepare cold water the night before brewing day. Use ice only as a last resort, as it could harbour nasty germs.
2. Less exposure to air helps prevent wild yeast from having their feast. Thus spoiling your favourite beer.

 

 

 

 
 
 
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