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Congratulations on moving up to all-grain so quickly, we're still on mini-mash -- though I have bought a barley crusher for the fiance for Christmas present, and still need to hook up our Therminator. Your friend's book/beer? You mean JP, or did you get Greg Koch's "The Brewer's Apprentice"? I agree on the yeast starter -- don't forget to use carbon filtration or campden tablets for your prep water as well, especially if your water system has chloraminated water. That'll increase your yeast growth potential and increase pitching rate. Good luck!
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Ditto what Arlene said -- you and Ryan should make it to NHC in Seattle, we're shooting to host in Austin in 2014 or later. You should join the American Homebrewers Association, benefits include Zymurgy magazine to your door every other month, as well as access to the AHA forum -- great resource! Can't pimp Zymurgy without mentioning Brew Your Own magazine, great articles and recipes as well. Other recommended reading is "Brewing Classic Styles" by Jamail Zainasheff and John Palmer. Good luck with your homebrewing!
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Aug 9, 2011