HOMEBREW Digest #124 Tue 11 April 1989

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		Rob Gardner, Digest Coordinator

  CompuServe (homer)
  New Books (homer)
  Introduction, and a Few Questions (Gary Benson)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Mon, 10 Apr 89 13:29 MDT From: homer%drutx at att.att.com Subject: CompuServe Charlie Papazian tells me that the homebrew forum on CompuServe is set up and there is some activity. The access is GO WINEFORUM. Library 14 and 15 are for beer and homebrew. AHA members can get a free subscription and initial time on CompuServe. Call or write the AHA. Jim Homer att!drutx!homer Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 10 Apr 89 13:29 MDT From: homer%drutx at att.att.com Subject: New Books Randy Mosher's book "The Brewer's Workbook" will not be published by Brewers Publications. "Introduction to Brewing Science" by Dr. George Fix will be published by Brewers Publications, it is currently in process. Jim Homer att!drutx!homer Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 10 Apr 89 21:57:28 PDT From: inc at tc.fluke.COM (Gary Benson) Subject: Introduction, and a Few Questions Hello! I've been reading the HomeBrew Digest for a while now, and find it to be really interesting and informative. Thanks to all for making this a friendly forum for discussing a mutual interest: getting snockered on the fruits of our own labor! (Just kidding, <wink>, <wink>) I'm writing to introduce myself, to let you know where I am with my hobby and to ask a few questions. My name is Gary Benson, and I supervise part of the Publications Department here at Fluke. I recently resurrected homebrewing as a hobby, and this time around is a LOT more fun...for one thing, it seems that in the past ten years or so, things have gotten much more scientific and repeatable. My first time around I brewed maybe 2 or 3 batches and gave it up for a lost cause. The stuff made it to the bottle (maybe it shouldn't have!), and it never exploded, but it was pretty raunchy. Anyway, nowadays we have a CHOICE of yeast, all kinds of variations in the brewing process, choices of equipment, and we can even make draft beer -- no need to bottle it at all! I am on my 8th batch or so, and I am making a beer I really enjoy. I will porbably never graduate to all-grain brewing for two reasons: One, I am unwilling to spend that much time, and two, I now make what I consider to be an excellent Porter WITHOUT the added equipment and time that going all-grain seems to entail. Perhaps my tastes will mature further (today it is hard to believe how wonderful I once thought P-B-R was!) and my beer will need the additional complexity or body that only all-grain can provide, but I really can't say. I'm pretty happy with this. Here's the recipe: 1 can Munton and Fison's dark hopped extract 1/2 can Edme bitters kit extract 1 stick brewer's licorice 1/2 pound toasted barley made into a tea 1 pound flaked barley (sparged in a kitchen strainer!) 2 ounces Cascade hops (pellets) 1 ounce Northern Brewer hops (pellets) Edme yeast (from Bitters kit) As usual, I did not boil the entire five gallon batch. I did use boiling water to sparge the flaked barley, though, so it was too hot for the yeast until the following morning. To pitch the yeast, I normally do just that: PITCH it onto the surface of the wort. This time, I took out about a quart of the wort, added about 1/2 cup regular old refined white cane sugar, and stirred it in after 15 minutes or so. Those yeast did not just activate, they got down right EXCITED! I pitched the yeast on 2/24, at 7:00 am. By the time I came home for lunch, it was bubbling furiously. Two days later it slowed to the point that I thought it had given out, so I put it into the secondary fermenter. That got things going again, but quite a bit slower than initially. A total of only 7 days after pitching the yeast, I bottled. I have never had a brew take off quite so fast, so I monitored S.G. closer than usual-- I read it daily, and sometimes two or even three times in a day. Beginning S.G. was 1045, and ending was 1005. When it was stable for two days, I figured it was done, and it was. I ferment my brews right next to the hot water heater, which seems to maintain a constant 74 degrees. Some questions: is 74 degrees too warm for fermenting dark ales? does it REALLY matter if you throw the yeast onto the surface, or proof it first (given equally active yeast -- I know that both methods work, but does it really change anything?) I'll shut up here soon, but I did want to ask this group something I've been curious about for a long time: it seems to me that all the world's beers comprise a continuum from near beer, through LA, up to Budmiller, into the Mexican exports, the British stay-at-homes, (hmmm... never thought of it before, but Mexico and England could learn from each other!) and maybe ending with barleywine or something. Is that a fair characterization? If so, is there really a "definition" for the terms we use all the time to describe our brews. What exactly is ale, beer, malt liquor, porter, bitter, stout? The only two stouts that I can find locally are Guinness and Sheaf, and there is a LARGE difference between these. What qualities do they share that their makers can both put "stout" on the label? Are pilsner and lager similar -- both are light-colored, right? And Lager is aged, but is that it? How about Bock and dupplebock? I understand that bock is the season's dregs, but is the double version the dregs of a season's worth of brewing starting with bock? Thanks -- I hope my questions are not too elementary. I am looking forward to future editions of our digest. Oh! a piece of adminstrivia to the kind person who manages the digest: I also usually recieve two mailings of each digest, a day apart. I can send the path if it will help locate the bug. And a suggestion: would it be possible to include the edition as part of the "End" message", something like: End of HOMEBREW Digest 199, 5/4/89 ********************************** I frequently recieve several new digests at one time, and it would be helpful to be reminded as I reach the end what the edition was so I could save it easily without returning to the mailer's header list to remind myself. No problem if it's not easy to accomplish, but thanks a lot if you can manage it! Thanks again to all who are contributing to this fine publication. I look forward to reading the digest every time it comes. -- GaryBenson, inc at tc.fluke.COM-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_ -_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-I was born to play shortstop. -Rey Quinones Return to table of contents
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