HOMEBREW Digest #1238 Fri 01 October 1993

Digest #1237 Digest #1239

		Rob Gardner, Digest Coordinator

  Help with yeast culturing (D S Draper)
  Automatic Hydrometer (r.mcglew3)
  nj brewpub law (RICH CATENA DTN 321-5170)
  Spruce Beer (abaucom)
  Drinking containers. (EZIMMERM)
  Dry Mead (Steve Seaney)
  All Grain Oatmeal Stout (Steve Seaney)
  Re: Mash temperatures for Scotch Ale (Jason Goldman)
  CO2 on wort -- infections? (EZIMMERM)
  Corn Starch/McEwan's Scotch Ale ("Robert H. Reed")
  Encl 0 of 1: ("BRADLEY R. USYAK")
  Encl 1 of 1: Document.1: ("BRADLEY R. USYAK")
  Re: different tastes from different mugs (Jeff Benjamin)
  Hot-Side Aeration (John Janowiak)
  Re: Problems with carbonation (korz)
  Yeast pitching rates (George J Fix)
  GABF (George J Fix)
  Pumpkin Mash- recipe (COYOTE)
  Smaller Batches ("Dowd-Brenton")
  grain mill evaluations (Boston Wort Processors' Krush-off 1/3) (Patrick Sobalvarro)
  grain mill evaluations (Boston Wort Processors' Krush-off 2/3) (Patrick Sobalvarro)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Thu, 30 Sep 1993 11:04:32 +0100 (BST) From: D S Draper <D.S.Draper at bristol.ac.uk> Subject: Help with yeast culturing Hello all, please help me with a problem I'm having in culturing yeast from bottle-conditioned beers. My goal was to get better flavor than what is possible using Edme ale yeast, which is all that I can get locally (liquid yeasts are not sold in the UK). I'm sorry to make such a long message, but I am desperate--I've made 14 gallons of undrinkable beer in the past three weeks. Here is the history: Attempt #1: Took a (275ml) bottle of Worthington White Shield, decanted most of the beer, added a couple heaping spoons of dried malt extract and one of glucose. Shook it up, put a wad of sterile cotton in the top. After several days, it was quite vigorously active. Pitched a batch of beer that is designed to mimic WWS (from Dave Line's recipe). After quick startup, the main foamy yeast mat subsided after about 36 hours to be replaced by a mat with a distinctly different look--the bubbles were much larger, and had little tendril-like things on the surfaces. The bubbles gave the surface of the mat a sort of "tensile cohesion" (for lack of a better term) that is totally unlike anything I've seen using Edme. It also had a very strange smell unlike anything encountered before. After it subsided (took about a week), racked to secondary. Tasted awful, like cough syrup, with a woody, mediciny flavor--it was the taste equivalent of the smell noted above. After a few days in the secondary, with no improvement in flavor, I concluded it was infected and dumped it out. I reckoned that because I had pitched a pretty small volume of active yeast, something else must have gotten in. Alternatively, I obviously did next to nothing with respect to sanitation in this attempt. Attempt #2: A raspberry ale using a yeast cultured from Hanseatic IPA. This time, I sterilized a wine bottle rigorously; boiled the malt extract + sugar and then cooled it. I covered the neck of the wine bottle with some plastic food wrap and a rubber band (the rubber stopper for the airlock I'd gotten didn't fit). I sterilized everything in sight this time, including wiping the neck of the bottle with alcohol prior to pouring the starter solution into the wort. This time, again very rapid takeoff, and everything looked perfectly normal. Smelled fine too...until the last day or two in the primary, when that same smell was present in small amounts. Racked to the secondary, and the smell was more noticeable while I was cleaning the primary afterwards. After a couple of days, when I added pectin enzyme (just dumped in the powder) and finings, the sample I removed had that same damn taste. I let it sit in the secondary for about 10 days, then bottled--the taste was still there, and stronger. That was 9 days ago, and last night I tried one, and it tasted like bloody cough syrup again. There is no aroma as in #1 though. Attempt #3 (started before I realized what was happening in #2). Keg bitter using 7.5 lbs of Boots unhopped malt extract syrup, some grains, hops etc. Yeast cultured from King & Barnes Festive Ale. This time I used a 1-liter plastic Volvic water bottle, whose neck could accept the rubber stopper for my airlock. Sterilized everything in sight, boiled the proto-wort as before, got vigorous action in a few days. Once again, very rapid takeoff, but this time we had a repeat of #1 in terms of appearance: the ordinary fluffy mat was overtaken by that slimy-looking, stiffer, larger-bubbled mat. I tasted it at several points, but "that taste" from #1,2 was definitely not present. 48 hrs after racking to the secondary, when I added finings, the sample had a different unpleasant taste: it is almost bread-like, in fact sourdough bread is what comes to mind. Plodding gamely on, I transferred to my pressure barrel three days ago, and a sample last night had the sourdough taste even more pronounced. Aaaaaaaaaaaaagggggggggghhhhhhhhh! 14 gallons of bad beer. What am I doing wrong??? After Attempt #1 I've been extra anal about sterility. All my beers (53 batches counting these three) have been done with the same techniques, and I never had the slightest hint of contamination before. In reading the net for the past 4 months or so, the conventional wisdom is that it's child's play to culture from bottles. Is the problem with #2 that I capped the starter bottle only with plastic wrap? Is the problem with #3 that I used a plastic starter bottle? I assumed that because it was a drinking-water bottle that it would be food-grade. In both #2 and #3, I tasted the starter solution before pitching it, and it was not unpleasant. My next step is to order a pure culture from Brewlab here in the UK (thanks to Pete Hammond for providing their address) with a proper glass flask and try that--but we're talking about a 10 quid outlay for that, and I'm on too tight a budget to spend that much for 5 more gallons of bad beer. Once again sorry for using all the bandwidth, I eagerly await your replies. Posting is fine, but if you want to email me direct, do so at d.s.draper at bristol.ac.uk because "reply mail" doesn't seem to get to me. Many many thanks, Dave in Bristol Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Sep 93 12:14:00 BST From: r.mcglew3 at genie.geis.com Subject: Automatic Hydrometer A while back I moonlighted and wrote a manual for an automatic battery monitoring system for diesel submarines. One part of it was an automatic hydrometer. Basically, it worked similar to a battery tester with the little colored balls. Each colored ball has a known specific gravity. The device could either have enough photo-receptors for each ball, or the operator could start out with the starting gravity and simply count the balls as they rise. The more finely spaced the balls are the more precise the measurements. Using a computer and calculating the slope, a fairly good representation of the rate of change should be determined. How to find a supply of calibrated balls?? I'll leave that to the net. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Sep 93 06:10:58 PDT From: RICH CATENA DTN 321-5170 <catena at arrcee.enet.dec.com> Subject: nj brewpub law Does anyone have a copy of the nj brewpub law which was signed a month or two ago? If it can be emailed that would be great. If no one has it anyone know who I nedd to contact to get a copy? thanks, Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Sep 93 10:13:34 EDT From: abaucom at fester.swales.com Subject: Spruce Beer Someone mentioned they might like to make a spruce beer...I thought so too before I made one. IMHO the Bruce&Kays Black Spruce Honey Lager from TNCJOHB would have been a fine beer if only I'd left out the SPRUCE! In fact, I only added about a quarter of the spruce (extract) called for! What I got was 2 cases of Pine-Sol bathroom cleaner...urf! FWIW... -Andrew Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Sep 1993 08:25:58 -0600 (MDT) From: EZIMMERM at UWYO.EDU Subject: Drinking containers. Salutations! In responce to Jim's article about a different taste with different mugs I just wanted to say that I remember reading somewhere that traditionally Bocks have been drunk with stoneware. Wisdom of the ages? Perhaps this could start a new container thread... I have 4 10oz Pilsner glasses and 4 12oz 'crystal' mugs. I'd like to add a set of 4 stoneware mugs as well as some British 'dimple' pub style mugs. Oh, I'd also love to have a yard glass. Are Corning outlets still selling these? I haven't had the chance to taste any difference in taste with different vessles, but an experement would be interesting... Gene in Laramie Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Sep 1993 10:02:06 -0500 (CDT) From: Steve Seaney <seaney at ie.engr.wisc.edu> Subject: Dry Mead Does anyone out there have any suggestions or recipes for an extremely dry mead? I plan to make my first one in a few weeks. Thanks, Steve - -- Steve Seaney: 608/262-5328: seaney at engr.wisc.edu Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Sep 1993 10:04:32 -0500 (CDT) From: Steve Seaney <seaney at ie.engr.wisc.edu> Subject: All Grain Oatmeal Stout Hello, I'm planning on brewing my first all grain batch this weekend. I'd like to do an oatmeal stout. Are there any good recipes floating around for such a brew? I'm a little concerned that the oatmeal may mess up the mashing process -- should I be? Thanks, Steve - -- Steve Seaney: 608/262-5328: seaney at engr.wisc.edu Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Sep 93 9:08:08 MDT From: Jason Goldman <jason at gibson.sde.hp.com> Subject: Re: Mash temperatures for Scotch Ale bjw at techsun1.cray.com (Benjamin Woodliff) writes: > I'm not particularity fond of Scotch Ale, at least if bottled McEwan's > is a good example of it. So, not wishing to experiment any more than > absolutely necessary, I'm curious about how much of what I would refer > to as the overpowering "malty sweetness" of McEwan's owes itself to > mashing at somewhat higher temperatures? > > I often use British 2-row and typical mash ales between 150-153 degrees F. > >From those that may have some practical experience in this matter, what > characteristics of a good sweet malt flavor can be derived from mashing > highly modified malt at these somewhat higher mash temperatures (ie. > presumably in the 158-160 deg. F range.)? > > I'd welcome any input on this matter. I'm not necessarily looking to > brew a McEwan's clone but would like get a better feel for how much > effect higher temps might have on the development of non-fermentable > sugars and this flavor characteristic. > I brew a decent all grain Scotch Ale. I use a fair amount of dextrin and crystal malts in the mash and I mash it at 158 degrees F with a single step, stovetop infusion mash. This comes out fairly malty and sweet. I would not be surprised if some of McEwan's sweetness came from added sugars (e.g. treacle), though, because mine is malty but not as 'syrupy'. Jason jason at gibson.sde.hp.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Sep 1993 09:07:32 -0600 (MDT) From: EZIMMERM at UWYO.EDU Subject: CO2 on wort -- infections? Salutations! I've just had the thought that perhaps even the food grade CO2 isn't filtered and thus has the possibility of containing 'nasties' in the form of wild yeast or bacteria. I was thinking of this when I read some of us purge our kegs with CO2. Am I missing something? I know most bugs need O2 to live, but what about some kind of hybernation sort of thing? It's not an uncommon thing to find animals that will lay dormant until the needed resources aboud i.e. those fish that lay in the dried mud until it rains, fungi and bacteria that can freeze and then live. Just a thought. Gene in Laramie Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Sep 1993 11:27:14 -0400 (EDT) From: "Robert H. Reed" <rhreed at icdc.delcoelect.com> Subject: Corn Starch/McEwan's Scotch Ale "CCA::ELS_DEM" <ELS_DEM%CCA.decnet at consrt.rockwell.com> writes: > > I have been considering using either maize flakes or corn- > starch as an adjunct to an all-grain ale. > It seems to me that the sugars obtained from mashing cornstarch > would be -- corn sugar. Using sugar would make the mash a bit smaller, but > would also remove some of the satisfaction of making my own. What's the > collective wisdom on this? I have used cornstarch in Pale Ale's - <15% of the total mash - and have not experienced the cidery flavor often obtained with adding corn sugar. Perhaps, the method of commercial preparation of corn sugar introduces something that results in a cidery flavor. I believe that ultimately, the amount of adjuncts - corn or other - that you add has the largest impact on flavor. Use of a small amount of corn starch is quite simple: I add it during the starch conversion rest. Initially, the mash thickens up like gravy and as the enzymes begin conversion, the viscosity of the mash returns to normal. bjw at techsun1.cray.com (Benjamin Woodliff) writes: > > I'm not particularity fond of Scotch Ale, at least if bottled McEwan's > is a good example of it. So, not wishing to experiment any more than > absolutely necessary, I'm curious about how much of what I would refer > to as the overpowering "malty sweetness" of McEwan's owes itself to > mashing at somewhat higher temperatures? > In Greg Noonan's recent book, Scotch Ale, the 120 and 140 shilling Wee Heavy recipes call for a very high mash temperature - 158F - and fairly low bittering rates on the order of 30 to 40 bittering units. These two parameters create beer with big mouth feel, body and malt sweetness. I believe the diacetyl also enhances the perception of sweetness in McEwan's Scotch Ale. Rob Reed Internet: rhreed at icdc.delcoelect.com IC Design Center Delco Electronics Corporation Return to table of contents
Date: 30 Sep 1993 10:51:10 GMT From: "BRADLEY R. USYAK" <ZINBU at cwemail.ceco.com> Subject: Encl 0 of 1: <WP Attachment Enclosed> Return to table of contents
Date: 30 Sep 1993 10:51:10 GMT From: "BRADLEY R. USYAK" <ZINBU at cwemail.ceco.com> Subject: Encl 1 of 1: Document.1: Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Sep 93 9:55:14 MDT From: Jeff Benjamin <benji at hpfcbug.fc.hp.com> Subject: Re: different tastes from different mugs jim at n5ial.mythical.com (Jim Graham) writes: > I've noticed that different beer mugs I have will make > various beers appear to taste better/worse. The glass or mug can certainly make a difference in how a beverage tastes. Composition, shape, and texture all have an impact on how we perceive flavor. You wondered specifically about the texture/material. Try "drinking" out of empty glass, ceramic, and pewter cups. They will all "taste" different -- I always thought pewter had a kind of tang to it that could, IMHO, mask slight imperfections in a beer. And a ceramic mug will, to me, lend a "fullness" of texture to the tongue that I don't get from glass. Also, the vessel's shape can make a big difference. Different shapes will concentrate the aroma differently, and smell is a huge part of taste. That's why Trappist ale glasses are bowl shaped, weizen glasses are tall and vase-like, and pilsner glasses are tall and narrow. In (northern) Europe, they realize this, and you almost always get served a beer in a correctly shaped glass. Serious wine drinkers have known this for years as well. You can buy different wine glasses for reislings, chardonnays, cabernet sauvignons, etc. I once read a newspaper article about a guy who makes hand- blown glassware (at $80 a pop) for drinking only certain types of wine. - -- Jeff Benjamin benji at hpfcla.fc.hp.com Hewlett Packard Co. Fort Collins, Colorado "Midnight shakes the memory as a madman shakes a dead geranium." - T.S. Eliot Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Sep 93 12:31:30 -0400 From: jsqr at sgi37.wwb.noaa.gov (John Janowiak) Subject: Hot-Side Aeration > NOW A QUESTION: Hot side aeration. > I have not seen Fix's article on this, I was wondering if anyone could > summarize the crux of it for me. The concern is over addind air to a mash > once it's brought up to mashing temp, and then upon sparging and splashing. The crux of Fix's article on hot side aeration ("HSA") (without going into the chemistry that I won't pretend to understand) is: - It should be considered in the process from the beginning of the mash through mash-out. Avoid a lot of oxygenating (splashing, etc.) as much as possible when transfering the wort from the lauter tun to the boiling kettle. He states that some theorize that the introduction of a raking mechanism in many American brewries that ungently mixed the mash to even the temperature in the tun may have contibuted to the demise of our brew industry, perhaps as much as Prohibition, due to the "hot-side" aeration off-flavors that were introduced by such action. - A vigorous boil in the kettle is desireable for a good hot break, but wort should be handled gingerly when cooling until below about 86 F. Of course aeration is desired when cooled to re-oxygenate for the yeast prior to fermentation. - Hot-side aeration is more of a concern for high gravity worts. - Also, due to scale considerations (sfc. area vs. volume), "HSA" should be more of a problem the smaller the batch size - hence, beware homebrewers. In the same issue of Zymurgy, another author or authors contend that recirculating wort prior top sparging is not a good idea as the potential for "HSA" exists, and that it doesn't really do much for wort clarity. They contend (I'm not emotionally involved here) that if yield is the issue, just add another pound of grain or so to the mash and forget the recirculation. John Janowiak Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Sep 93 11:58 CDT From: korz at iepubj.att.com Subject: Re: Problems with carbonation Doug and Brian write about problems with carbonation (edited): "Brew Your Own" store) and have had mixed success. Our first batch was a simple "kit" lager which went four days in primary and thirteen days in secondary. While not totally flat this beer did not carbonate fully and was somewhat disappointing. The store suggested that we should siphon off our beer before adding the carbonation sugar to ensure that all the sugar would be fully mixed and not fall into the botom sludge that never gets into the bottles. First off, what you made was an ale -- given that it fermented out in 17 days, I suspect that you fermented somewhere between 65F and 70F (around 20C). This will make an ale since lagers are really brewed in the high-40's or in the 50's (Farenheit). Secondly, it's recommended to rack (siphon) to a different container for adding the priming sugar not so much because your priming sugar will stay in the fermenter, but rather because you will inevitably stir up some of the gunk in the bottom of the fermenter and get it in your bottles. Batch number two was the same "kit" lager, with 6 1/2 lbs of fresh raspberries added to create a fruity summer beer. The beer fermented four days in primary and seventeen days in secondary (with very vigorous fermentation going on all the time). The result was great with lots of carbonation and a super taste. You probably got a lot of carbonation here, either because you bottled a bit too soon or because the raspberries had some more attenuative wild yeast or perhaps some bacteria on them. Batch number three was an English Bitter... ...Carbonation this time was poor with the beer being nearly flat. In all three cases we used malt sugar (between 2/3 and 1 cup) for eighteen litres of beer... Well, there's your problem. If you prime with malt extract, you need to use more than if you prime with corn sugar (dextrose). Malt extract, BY WEIGHT, is only about 80% as fermentable as dextrose which is 100% fermentable, so 3/4 cup corn sugar is about the same as 1.25 cups of malt extract. I recommend that you switch to corn sugar for priming since it is cheaper, does not contain proteins (which could give your beer an unpleasant, but benign ring around the collar) and dissolves easier in your priming solution. Also, another reason you may feel that your beer is undercarbonated is because most major North American beers are way overcarbonated. If you want to get a carbonation level like Miller or Molson, you will have to use 1 cup of corn sugar or 1.5 cups of malt extract and then use anti foaming agents so your beers don't gush all over the place. Either that or you will have to filter your beers so you remove all head-retaining proteins. My advice: try 3/4 cup of corn sugar and get used to the slightly lower level of carbonation -- it fights less for attention in your mouth with the real flavor of the beer. I wrote this in a bit of a hurry, so if it sounds like I'm flaming you, I appologize -- I didn't mean to. Al. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Sep 93 11:34:05 -0500 From: gjfix at utamat.uta.edu (George J Fix) Subject: Yeast pitching rates It has been my experience that underpitching yeast is a common problem with some homebrewers, and selected micros as well. There appears to be general agreement in the professional literature that the proper pitching rate for cold fermented lagers is 12-16 million viable cellls per ml wort. I have found this to be the case with my beers as well. It should be noted that with ales fermented around 20C (68F), half this rate is satisfactory. Wort gravity is another issue, and I have found that the proper pitching rate should increase with it. To cite an extreme example, I have been playing around with several formulations for pre-prohibition Stock Ale. The OGs range from 1.070 to 1.085, and best results were obtained when the ale yeast was pitched at lager rates. As for as practical brewing is concerned, the key is to find ways of getting good estimates for the number of cells actually pitched as well as estimates of their viability. Rodney Morris has come up with a straightforward staining procedure for estimating % viability. It is discussed in detail in my article that appeared in "Just Brew It" (1992, BP). The most accurate elementary way to count yeast cells is with a hemocytometer. Since many homebrewers do not have access to such a device, pitching by volumes can be used as an alternative. I have found (using a hemocytometer) that there are approximately 4.5 billion cells per ml. yeast solids. This means e.g. to pitch 18 million cells per ml. we need 1 volume of yeast solids per 4.5*1000/18 = 250 volumes of wort. Thus, for a 5 gallon = 640 oz. batch one needs 640/250 = 2.56 oz. of yeast solids. If these are at least 67% viable, then this would be satisfactory for lagers. Half that would be ok for ales with a standard OG. If the % viability were below 67%, we would be underpitching, something that would be evident from a longer than desirable lag and/or higher than normal FG. With yeast starters or yeast propagated from slants, we will have to estimate the amount of solids from a solution that is a mixture of yeast and liquid. Fortunately, the range for proper cells additions is rather wide, so we have some margin for error here. One can decant off the solution, and then pitch the proper volume of yeast solids. This should be done, however, under nearly sterile conditions. I have found with some practice one can get pretty good at estimating yeast solids in solution, and this avoids the need for decanting. For all of the yeast strains I have worked with I have found that saturating chilled wort with O2 gives the best results. Direct DO measurements indicate that it is possible to dissolve 6-8 mg/l liter in standard gravity wort at 15 C. This decreases as either temperature or wort gravity increases. The O2 fraction of atmospheric air is ~21% which goes up to ~32% for air dissolved in wort. This means that saturating wort with air will lead to a ~third less O2 than direct O2 injection. This may or may not be a problem depending on the yeast strain used. It should be emphasized that all the O2 in the world will not help if the cell count is below the proper levels. Private discussion with Jack Schmedling has indicated to me that this was a factor in his interesting experiment on wort aeration. Too much O2 is toxic to yeast, but this will happen only when O2 levels reach 20 mg/l or higher. I have found, and there is conformation of this in the professional literature, that it is impossible to dissolve even half this amount in wort even at 0 C. Those who have read the book Belgian Ales will note that I am in disagreement with the results reported there regarding O2 levels. The results are also in conflict with results in the professional literature. -George Fix Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Sep 93 11:34:36 -0500 From: gjfix at utamat.uta.edu (George J Fix) Subject: GABF My wife and I will be attending the GABF, and we would be interested in comparing notes with other homebrewers concerning the beers that are represented there. Both Laurie and I will be on the professional panel, so I have no idea how good a condition our palates will be in either Fri or Sat. nights. Nevertheless, there are a lot of new micros that will have beers there, and the reaction to these by other brewers would be of great interest. Look us up if interested. -George Fix Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Sep 1993 11:31:55 -0600 (MDT) From: COYOTE <SLK6P at cc.usu.edu> Subject: Pumpkin Mash- recipe I did a Pumpkin beer last year that was a variation on the CATS EYE from the Cats Meow. I did a mash from the grains below and pulled one gallon off and added the goop mix, pasteurized and feremnted in a gallon jug. I named the whole beer "Cats Eye" and the gallon batch "Pumpkin Mash". Cats Eye was kegged, and the mash bottled w/ cute labels. We had a huge party at the house- live bands, costumes..the works on Halloween and served up both (and a bit more) and had ourselves a jolly 'ol time. Then the cops wanted to reclaim the cities flashing light/baracades. Put a slight damper on things- but they do make good party decorations ;)^ So...being as how we are to experience a full moon tonight...and october is about to begin, the time is right for pumpkin tonight! First- last year's recipe for the 7 gal Cats Eye, and 1 gal PumpKin Mash 10# 2 row Pale Malt 2 # 40L Crystal 1 # Wheat Malt .5 # Chocolate 4 cups (1.5#) Cooked brown rice (ah what the hell!!!) Boil 2 oz Tettnager- flake 1 oz Saaz Finish 1 oz Cascade Gypsum in the mash. Irish moss in the boil. I won't bother with the full mash routine. A step up to mash temp- 60 deg C then 65, then mashout at 70. Sparge, pull of 1 gal for pumpkin experiment. Pumpkin Mash: 13 # pumpkin - degooped. Take orange flesh, separate out seeds (Originally I thought of getting seeds- grinding and mashing. anyone have an idea whether that would work? Gotta have starches!) 2 tbsp cinnamon 1 tsp nutmeg handful of chopped cilantro .5 tbsp pickling spice (includes cloves and stuff....) This was steeped for 1 min in 1 gal of the boiled wort mix. Tossed the cascade in here for more steeping. Both were very yummy and well received. The cats eye had a hoppy nose, good head- fresh of the tap- and a deep amber to brown color. Malty full mouth feel, but not heavy. It was intended to be on the lighter side for public consumption. The Pumpkin Mash had a creamy mouth feel, and a spicy aftertaste. I couldn't really identify the cilantro, but there was an unusual- but pleasant unique flavor. It was a very nice blend of flavors. It was hazy. Maybe I'll try fining this time. I wouldn't go overboard on the spices- but I don't know if you really could get a "pumpkin flavor",I think it added more of a fullness and feel. I wouldn't boil the pumkin- treat it like fruit. It smelled wonderful when it was steeping. -oh. I used Wyeast's german alt yeast culture for both. Now this year: Same yeast...but I'm going to do a double batch (10gal) Half will be pumpkin, the other half - peach. MASH: 10 # 2 row pale malt 4 # Vienna 2 row 1 # 120 L Xtal 1 # 60 L Xtal 2 # Unmalted Wheat 2 # Victory .25 # Chocolate (yeah I know everythings changed. It's a new year! Only the pumpkin remains the same!) I think I'll use some fresh cascade hops (my big producer this year!) and some Centennial for bittering. Maybe something diff. in the peach. Got some year old Kent Goldings from william's. May be just the thing for a lambic style! (I've got a rasberry brown ale going now. Yum!) The peaches have been stoned, and frozen. I've got about a 1/3 bushel. The rest is meading away! Smells awfully sulfury. But I digress... Pumpkin Mash: A big sized pumpkin (about 1 foot across) and several small ones from my garden. Gutted- and deseeded the guts. (since I'm scaling up this year to 5 gallons) 5 tbsp cinnamon 2 tsp nutmeg a bunch of cilantro, and a palmful of ground coriander seed. 1 tbsp pickling spice This will be steeped as before, and the pumpkin goop strained out before it's placed in the primary. Rinse the goop with hot H2O. Should keep me busy tonight. I usually brew sat afternoons, but I'll be busy playing rock and roll this weekend, and besides- the carma of a full moon can't be beat (well, and rainy day is real nice too!). On an off note- I just saw Michael Hedges last night! INCREDIBLE! ok ok. sorry for all the excess band width. I banter. Let me know if any one tries any variations of these. I'd love to know how they come out. If anyone want to swap a pumpkin brau- drop me a line! RE: Cornstarch in the mash. I'd think something serving like corn flakes, or rice would add sugar w/o much body, but I'd also be inclined to think that the enzymes would not necessarily break down all the starch all the way to the equivalent of corn sugar. It is much more refined, and part of the process of mashing leaves fully converted and partially converted products- adding to the fullness of a brew. Brew on Ye Brethren of Bee, Barley, and Vine. Happy Hoppiness! _____________________________________________________________________ J. Wyllie (The Coyote) SLK6P at cc.usu.edu "As long as he's got 8 fingers and 8 toes, he's alright by me." H.J.S. _______________________________________________________________________ Return to table of contents
Date: 30 Sep 1993 13:48:13 GMT From: "Dowd-Brenton" <MSMAIL.DOWDB at TSOD.lmig.com> Subject: Smaller Batches I have a friend who is interested in becoming a homebrewer. The biggest obstacle that he sees confronting him, is the fact that he is not what you would call a "quaffer". He is interested in variety, and quality, but not quantity. When he posed the question of smaller batches to me, I responded with "I dont see why not", after which he mentioned that receipes cannot always be simply cut in half to make a half a batch. Well, I'm a quaffer, and perfer the larger size batches, so I thought I would through this question out to the knowledgeable folks on the net. Can the receipes simply be proportionatly cut down? Has anyone tried a 1 or 2 gallon batch? Good points? Bad points? Anything? Happy brewing Bret Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Sep 93 14:19:07 EDT From: pgs at ai.mit.edu (Patrick Sobalvarro) Subject: grain mill evaluations (Boston Wort Processors' Krush-off 1/3) This article is being posted in three parts, due to the 8K limit for HBD submissions. This is part 1 of 3 parts. The following article is reprinted from Volume VI, Number 10 of "Brewprint," the newsletter of the Boston Wort Processors, Boston's oldest brewing club. This issue was edited by Mike Fertsch. Complete issues (which would include the illustrations for this article) can be ordered for $2.00 each from: The Boston Wort Processors c/o James M. Fitzgerald 12 Ward Street Randolph, MA 02368 This article may be republished without approval so long as proper credit is given to the Boston Wort Processors. - ---------------------------------------------------------------- BOSTON WORT PROCESSORS HOLD KLUB KRUSH-OFF by Patrick Sobalvarro To the delicate strains of German "oompah" bands playing Trinklieder, the Boston Wort Processors held the long-awaited Klub Krush-off on September 12 at Tim and Heidi's beautiful home in North Reading. Club members began arriving with their mills at 2:00 p.m., and hijinks galore ensued as they attempted to fasten them to the tables thoughtfully provided by their hosts. Represented were six different mills: a customized Marcato grain mill, a slightly modified 1989 Corona flour mill, an original 1925 Corona flour mill, a Schmidling adjustable MaltMill, a Listermann Malt Mill, and a Glatt Malt Mill. The intention of the club in holding the Krush-Off was to evaluate these mills for ease of use and quality of workmanship, as well as to subjectively evaluate the quality of the crush they provided. We say "subjectively" here because graduated screens were not used; the crush was evaluated in each case by a group of experienced brewers in the club who closely examined the crushed grains. The malt that was used for the crush-off was M&F 2-row pale ale malt. The operators of each mill received half a pound with which to adjust the mill; then two more pounds were run through each mill in the actual test. The crushed grains themselves were used later that day in brewing an all-grain demonstration batch for the benefit of the extract brewers in the club. Some of the mills were run motorized; most of those that were used a well-worn 2.3 amp 3/8" electric hand drill. In some cases, mills were run both motorized and by hand; where mills were run by hand, we made an attempt to evaluate the rate at which the operators cranked them. We must say first that there was no clear hands-down winner among the mills brought to the Krush-off, and that the Boston Wort Processors do not endorse the purchase of any particular mill. In each case the mills produced crushed grain that should be adequate to the needs of a demanding homebrewer. That said, we did notice considerable differences between the mills, and our detailed descriptions of the results for each entrant follow. - ---------------------------------------------------------------- Mill: Customized Marcato Owner/Operator: Jay Hersh Approximate cost: $65 (new) + tax. The Marcato is an Italian grain mill with stainless steel knurled rollers. It may be driven with a roller or motorized with a hand drill; in the latter case an adaptor of the sort used to drive Italian pasta extruders is connected to the drive. The customization in this case consisted of the addition of lengthwise grooves along the rollers to help them pull grains in; additionally, a plastic soda bottle was taped to the mill as a hopper. This hopper held exactly two pounds of grain. The mill was operated by electric power during the test. A 2.9 amp electric hand drill was used for this. This mill was noticeably noisier than the others, but this may be because a different drill was used for it than for the others. The motorized mill took 2:28 (two minutes and twenty-eight seconds) to crush two pounds of grain. The crush committee had the following comments: all kernels were opened; about half of the husks were cut in half perpendicular to the long axis; the flour content was "not bad," which is to say, less flour was produced with this mill than with the modified Corona or the Schmidling MaltMill, but there was a little more flour than with the other mills. The committee felt, however, that the crush was of very good quality, and that good extraction rates could be expected. The workmanship of the Marcato mill itself was considered good. The clamping system used to secure it to the table appeared to be a little inconvenient, but the stainless steel rollers quite made up for it. The mill was easily adjustable simply by turning a knob, but small motions of the knob led to large variations in the roller spacing. The soda-bottle hopper, secured as it was with tape and cardboard, was deemed "kludgey, but serviceable." - ---------------------------------------------------------------- Mill: 1989 modified Corona Owner: Randy Zeitvogel Approximate Cost: $45 (new) + tax Operator: Dan Hall The Corona is a flour mill, made in Latin America, and generally the cheapest of the available mills. One round plate a few inches in diameter rotates against a fixed plate of the same size; both have radially-grooved surfaces. The modification in this case consisted of extra spacing between the two plates via the insertion of steel washers. The mill clamps to a table or counter with a built-in clamp. The hopper held two and a half pounds of grain. When run with a 2.3 amp electric drill, the mill was less noisy than the Marcato (this may be because a different drill was used). The mill took only 24 seconds to crush the two pounds of grain. The crush committee had the following comments: Every kernel was opened. The sizes of the broken pieces of kernel varied more widely than for the Marcato, but the range was considered acceptable. Two members of the crush committee felt that the amount of powder produced by this mill was greater than the amount of powder produced by the Marcato mill; but a third member felt that the amount of powder produced was slightly less (Gorman and Keohane vs. Slack). The husks were shredded more than by the Marcato; between 80% and 90% were adjudged to be cut in half perpendicular to the long axis. The crush committee nonetheless felt that the crush was of good quality and that a high extraction rate could be expected. The workmanship of this mill, with its all-metal construction, was excellent. It was easy to adjust and appeared to be very durable. - ---------------------------------------------------------------- Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Sep 93 14:21:10 EDT From: pgs at ai.mit.edu (Patrick Sobalvarro) Subject: grain mill evaluations (Boston Wort Processors' Krush-off 2/3) This article is being posted in three parts, due to the 8K limit for HBD submissions. This is part 2 of 3 parts. The following article is reprinted from Volume VI, Number 10 of "Brewprint," the newsletter of the Boston Wort Processors, Boston's oldest brewing club. This issue was edited by Mike Fertsch. Complete issues (which would include the illustrations for this article) can be ordered for $2.00 each from: The Boston Wort Processors c/o James M. Fitzgerald 12 Ward Street Randolph, MA 02368 This article may be republished without approval so long as proper credit is given to the Boston Wort Processors. - ---------------------------------------------------------------- Mill: 1925 unmodified Corona Owner: Sarah White Approximate Cost: Priceless! Operators: CSMC This instrument was clearly well-loved by its operators. They were quick to point out its many features: how it operated in near silence; how its long handle nearly ground the grains itself, the turning effort was so low; how the owner's cat likes it. The mill was clamped to the table with a "moby C-clamp." The mill was operated by hand during the test. The operator was clocked at 100 rpm. Only three-quarters of a pound were ground, in 1:38 (one minute and thirty-eight seconds). The operators chose to adjust the mill to minimize the flour resulting from crushing. The crush committee noted that there was very little powder in the resulting crushed malt, but that about 15% of the kernels remained unopened. The pieces of kernel that were crushed were about the same size as those from the modified Corona. All the crushed husks seen were cut in half perpendicular to the long axis. The committee expected lower extraction rates from the crushed malt in this test than in any of the others. What are we to say of the workmanship of this mill? This beautiful instrument, older than most Worts' parents, with its black-enameled wooden handle and its metallic body hinting of tales, tales it could tell of long nights making tortillas in some Northern Mexican village, a dream landscape of desert and night sky and mountains and moonrise, this instrument was of excellent construction. By all evidence durable, as well. - ---------------------------------------------------------------- Mill: Schmidling Adjustable MaltMill Owner/operator: Chris McDermott Approximate Cost: $129 (retail) + shipping. (the non-adjustable model is $99 + shipping) The Schmidling MaltMill is a two-roller malt mill with 10" steel rollers, finely grooved lengthwise. The roller spacing can be adjusted at one end of one roller, so that the rollers are not exactly parallel; the operator said that this was not a problem, however. The mill has a 2.25-pound hopper made of fiberboard, and a fiberboard base made to fit over the top of a grain bucket. It was tested twice: once hand-cranked and once motorized. In both tests the mill had to be held to the bucket by hand. The rollers were at their factory setting of 0.055". The unmotorized test came first. The mill was very quiet when cranked by hand; the operator was timed at approximately 120 rpm. Two pounds of grain were crushed in 44 seconds. When evaluating the hand-cranked crush, the crush committee said that the crushed kernel pieces were on average finer than those produced by Coronas, and the variation of sizes was smaller. Every kernel was opened, and only a small percentage were cut in half; most were split lengthwise. The amount of powder produced appeared to be about the same as the unmodified Corona. The committee expected good extraction rates from this crushed malt. The motorized test used a 2.3 amp electric drill. Two pounds of grain were crushed in only 21 seconds, for the day's record. The crush committee felt, however, that the crushed grain was not of the same quality as when the mill was operated by hand. Approximately 20% of the husks were damaged, and there was considerably more powder. The workmanship of the Schmidling mill was considered quite good. The long rollers gave it a high rate of crushing, and the construction, although large parts of it were fiber- or particle-board, was solid. Some club members felt that it was more difficult to adjust the spacing on this mill than on other mills. Others mentioned that it occasionally proves necessary to replace the O-rings used in the drive mechanism. - ---------------------------------------------------------------- Return to table of contents
End of HOMEBREW Digest #1238, 10/01/93