Really Excited Root Beer!

Really Excited Root Beer!

Post by Adam Cont » Sat, 15 Apr 1995 04:00:00



I've done about 5 batches of extract brewing and tried my hand at making a
root beer.  It tastes fine, but I've encountered a problem: extreme
overcarbonation (obviously due to my ba***t warming up w/ the weather).

Here's what I did:
Boiled in 1.5 gal water for 10 min:  1 oz sarsaparilla, 1.5 oz birch bark,
1 oz sassafras, 0.5 oz ginger, 8 cups table sugar.
Cooled, added rehydraded champagne yeast, stirred, and bottled right away.
Let sit in room temp (66F) for 5 days, then refridgerated for 3 days.  Then
I moved them into the ba***t, as it was infeasible to keep them in there
permanently.  A few I did leave in and were fine, but the other ones in the
ba***t will foam out 2/3 of the volume upon opening.  They have been in
the ba***t (55-59F) for about 4-5 weeks.

I only see two possible choices:  leave as is and if I want a root beer,
open three at a time over the sink (big waste), or open them all and pour
into a sterilized kettle, cover lightly and allow to go flat and then
rebottle.

So what should I do with this batch, and what should I do for future
batches (will become more of a problem as the ba***t is warming up)?  
Buying a new fridge for root beer is not an option.

Three more related questions:

The mixture was very light in color (a very light amber-orange color;
imagine mixing gingerale and mountain dew to get an idea of the opacity).
How can I make it darker?

How (besides keeping it very cool) can the yeast be forced not to convert
sugar into ***?  Is is still non-***ic (<1%) if its been going like
mad like this?

Seemed a little sweet.  Should I cut back on the sugar by a cup or so?

Thanks,
Adam

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Adam Contos                   "He attacked everything in life with a mixture

Graduate Research Assistant   and it was often difficult to tell which was
Boston University             which"
Center for Space Physics        - D. Adams, Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
--------------------------------------------------------------A-E-K-D-B-----

 
 
 

Really Excited Root Beer!

Post by Peter Kran » Sat, 15 Apr 1995 04:00:00


Quote:

>I've done about 5 batches of extract brewing and tried my hand at making  
a
>root beer.  It tastes fine, but I've encountered a problem: extreme  
>overcarbonation (obviously due to my ba***t warming up w/ the  
weather).

Your problem is that your root beet is starting to ferment in the bottles  
and thus carbonating the hell out of the root beer and eventually the  
pressure will grow large enough to probably cause your bottles to  
explode.

Typically, once a root beer batch has been mixed up, it is force  
carbonated with CO2 and a preservative or some type is mixed in to keep  
fermentation from taking place... Unless you do this, eventually a yeast  
strain of some sort will start to ferment your very sugary solution....  

If you do not have access to food preservatives, the only other solution  
is to put your root beer in something like a cornelius keg and monitor  
the pressure, it will continue to increase as fermentation takes place,  
so you will need to constantly vent the pressure...

 
 
 

Really Excited Root Beer!

Post by rhawk.. » Sat, 15 Apr 1995 04:00:00


Quote:

>I only see two possible choices:  leave as is and if I want a root beer,
>open three at a time over the sink (big waste), or open them all and pour
>into a sterilized kettle, cover lightly and allow to go flat and then
>rebottle.

option 3:

use less yeast.  root beer does not have all of the ingredients yeast
need to do their thing.  The soda extract brand in those little brown
boxes make a suggestion (i'll try to check tonight) of somethign like a
third of a pack of champaigne yeast (i think it actually tells you how
many grams).  if it's not that, its the Home Brewery catalog.  

Anyway, i followed that instruction, and was opening soda bottles that
spent over a year unrefridgerated without a problem.

--
R E HAWKINS

 
 
 

Really Excited Root Beer!

Post by Jerry Norri » Sun, 16 Apr 1995 04:00:00


Quote:



/* stuff deleted concerning options on keeping root beer from exploding

Quote:

> option 3:

> use less yeast.  root beer does not have all of the ingredients yeast
> need to do their thing.  The soda extract brand in those little brown
> boxes make a suggestion (i'll try to check tonight) of somethign like a
> third of a pack of champaigne yeast (i think it actually tells you how
> many grams).  if it's not that, its the Home Brewery catalog.  

It's 1/8 teaspoon per gallon of root beer.

Quote:
> Anyway, i followed that instruction, and was opening soda bottles that
> spent over a year unrefridgerated without a problem.

Thanks, I was getting ready to make a five gallon batch tonight (we
drink a _lot_ of root beer when it's home brewed) and wondered if
this was wise considering that I don't want bottles exploding hither
and yon.

later,
jerry.

 
 
 

Really Excited Root Beer!

Post by Jerry Norri » Sun, 16 Apr 1995 04:00:00


Quote:



/* stuff deleted concerning options on keeping root beer from exploding

Quote:

> option 3:

> use less yeast.  root beer does not have all of the ingredients yeast
> need to do their thing.  The soda extract brand in those little brown
> boxes make a suggestion (i'll try to check tonight) of somethign like a
> third of a pack of champaigne yeast (i think it actually tells you how
> many grams).  if it's not that, its the Home Brewery catalog.  

It's 1/8 teaspoon per gallon of root beer.

Quote:
> Anyway, i followed that instruction, and was opening soda bottles that
> spent over a year unrefridgerated without a problem.

Thanks, I was getting ready to make a five gallon batch tonight (we
drink a _lot_ of root beer when it's home brewed) and wondered if
this was wise considering that I don't want bottles exploding hither
and yon.

later,
jerry.

 
 
 

Really Excited Root Beer!

Post by Jerry Norri » Sun, 16 Apr 1995 04:00:00


Quote:



/* stuff deleted concerning options on keeping root beer from exploding

Quote:

> option 3:

> use less yeast.  root beer does not have all of the ingredients yeast
> need to do their thing.  The soda extract brand in those little brown
> boxes make a suggestion (i'll try to check tonight) of somethign like a
> third of a pack of champaigne yeast (i think it actually tells you how
> many grams).  if it's not that, its the Home Brewery catalog.  

It's 1/8 teaspoon per gallon of root beer.

Quote:
> Anyway, i followed that instruction, and was opening soda bottles that
> spent over a year unrefridgerated without a problem.

Thanks, I was getting ready to make a five gallon batch tonight (we
drink a _lot_ of root beer when it's home brewed) and wondered if
this was wise considering that I don't want bottles exploding hither
and yon.

later,
jerry.