HOMEBREW Digest #2347 Sat 15 February 1997

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				URL: http://www.oeonline.com

  Botulism ... (Steve Alexander)
  Buffalo Theory of Beer Drinking (John Chang)
  FSA - Faucet Side Aeration; Skunkage (Hal Davis)
  freezing sour mash (kathy)
  Priming Rates (George Dietrich)
  100% Wheat/hop oil/filtering ("C&S Peterson")
  Bruheat boilers and stepped mashes (Graham Stone)
  Brass beer engines (Graham Stone)
  re:  Dropping question, again (bdebolt)
  Hacker Pschorr Recipe (Chad Bohl)
  Errors ("Bill Giffin")
  Multi Part, all grain (Tim.Watkins)
  Blonde Ale? (Tim.Watkins)
  Downtown Chicago Brewpubs (Rick Seibt)
  RE: No sparge brew ("Mercer, David")
  Re: Botulism Solved (Energo Ed)
  New rules on internet access -Reply (Michael Caprara)
  AOB Tax Forms (cathy)
  skunking (korz)
  skunking experiment and starter aeration (James R. Layton 972.952.3718 JLAY)
  sterile aeration (korz)
  trub-free starters (korz)
   (Mark Pfortmiller)
  canning wort (Dave Whitman)
  Botulism (Pat Babcock)
  Sorry (Darrin Pertschi)
  Sorry (Darrin Pertschi)
  Re: White Labs Yeast Test Results (Chris White) (Chris White)
  Botulism (NO, NOT THAT!) (Spencer W Thomas)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Wed, 12 Feb 1997 19:34:33 -0500 From: Steve Alexander <stevea at clv.mcd.mot.com> Subject: Botulism ... Another endless thread ... Botulism is uncommon - like 30 cases in the US per year. The amount of toxin required to damage is "a few nanograms" according to the US FDA. A fair number of the cases are infants who can actually get a clostridium botulinum infection in their intestinal tract!! Among adults the leading cause is improperly canned foods especially asparagus, green beans and peppers. Potatoes and commercial pot-pies have been causes. Garlic and eggplant stored in oil, salted and smoked fish, sauteed onions and italian mascarpone cream cheese have been sources too. If you read the case histories from the links at http://vm.cfsan.fda.gov/~mow you'll note some human stupidity involved - like the guy who ate cold stew left sitting on a stovetop for three days. There are test kits available for toxins of some of the c.botulina, I doubt that this is a worthwhile approach. Sypmtoms: double vision, inability to swallow, speech difficulty, progressive respiratory paralysis. Onset 12 to 36 hours or longer. Duration 3 to 6 days. Fatality rate in the US is around 65%. A canned wort infection seems unlikely but possible. Best to boil the canned wort for 10 minutes before use or drop the pH below 4.6. Steve Alexander Return to table of contents
Date: 12 Feb 97 19:57:22 EST From: John Chang <75411.142 at CompuServe.COM> Subject: Buffalo Theory of Beer Drinking Greetings! On the lighter side: The Buffalo Theory of Beer Drinking and Brain Development A herd of buffalo can only move as fast as the slowest buffalo, much like the brain can only operate as fast as the slowest brain cells. The slowest buffalo are the sick and weak, so they die off first, making it possible for the herd to move at a faster pace. Like the buffalo, the weak, slow brain cells are the ones that are killed off by excessive beer drinking and socializing, making the brain operate faster. The moral of the story: Drink more beer, it will make you smarter. John Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 12 Feb 1997 20:35:31 -0600 (CST) From: Hal Davis <davis at planolaw.com> Subject: FSA - Faucet Side Aeration; Skunkage I heard tell from someone who heard it from someone else ... that the reason folks started putting aerators on the ends of faucets is that the aeration helps remove the chlorine. Now, if that's true, the cheapest and fastest way to reduce or eliminate chlorine from your brewing water is to NOT fill up your kettle with a hose (as I have been doing). Instead, fill up a vessell in the sink and then pour it into the kettle. Any of the chemists out there want to chase down this tale? **************** A couple o' weeks ago I tried posting something like this, but between being unintentionally unsubscribed from the list and the list moving around, I don't know if it was ever posted, and I know I never got a direct to me response. Sorry if there's repetition. Everyone says skunkage is due primarily to light. I don't see how Heineken is going to be exposed to light in the normal distribution chain. I'd think that all of those bottles would be enclosed in very opaque boxes, which would in turn spend the voyage in very opaque containers (as in "container ship"), or opaque railroad cars, opaque ship holds, and opaque trucks. The only place I can figure where they'd be exposed to light would be in the retail store, where they'd be exposed to less light than beers in clear glass that don't come out skunked. So how could Heineken be skunked unless it's caused by something other than light? Hal Davis Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 09 Feb 1997 10:07:57 -0500 From: kathy <kbooth at scnc.waverly.k12.mi.us> Subject: freezing sour mash I make a sour mash for mixing in my mashes of brews like PU, old ales, and dry stouts, by infusion mashing at 153F and then letting it cool to 120F and innoculating with a handful of fresh malt and letting it stay at 120F for 2-3 days. (Zymergy) I bag it off and freeze it for later uses the brew of the day. Thaw it out and mix it at mash in. What happens during freezing? It seems to make good beer, but do the enzymes continue to work in the freezer? Does the protein and dextrine degrade? Will there be enzyme power after freezing? Would it be better to pastuerize say 40' at 140F prior to freezing, or would it be best to do a mash out? As usual, TIA to those that do the heavey lifting of the HBD. jim booth, lansing, mi Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 05:36:56 -0600 (CST) From: George Dietrich <gad at flash.net> Subject: Priming Rates I thought that I understood all about priming beer for carbonation. That is until I was asked the question about why it takes less priming sugar to prime corny kegs , 5 l mini kegs and Party Pigs than you would use for 12 oz bottles. The more I tried to explain it the more I realized that I don't understand it very well at all. I was leaning toward beer surface area to volume ratios but as I said, the more I talked the deeper into a hole I got myself. Can someone run through the theory for me either via e-mail or in the digest please? I don't think that this will revive the headspace/carbonation thread, will it? Or is that related to what I'm trying to explain. Way too much copper in my system!! ;^) George gad at flash.net Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 97 08:02:54 UT From: "C&S Peterson" <CNS_PETERSON at msn.com> Subject: 100% Wheat/hop oil/filtering HBDers - ALL WHEAT BEERS: Saul asks a question regarding all-wheat beers. I (and my brewing partner) have made several batches of all-wheat and I can say while shouting THESE BEERS ARE FANTASTIC. There are more than enough enzymes to mash the wheat, but I think you may want to get another 1/2# of the rice hulls. I suggest boiling and draining the rice hulls just prior to use -- they are very dusty and often have a few rice kernels left in them. (The only conversion problems I ever had with rice hulls was when I did pre-boil them -- I added them to the mash and watched the starch reading shoot thorugh the roof as rice kernels floated to the surface!) Prior to doughing-in, line the bottom of your mash tun with 1/2 of the hulls. Use a decoction mash schedule with the grains (a single decoction is fine), and simply mix the other half of the rice hull in with the mash during the main mash rest. This proceedure has given me good run-offs with acceptable sparge times (but they will be somewhat slower than an all-malt batch). In my brief attempt to "go pro" (I attempted to open a decoction-style brewery in the Washington DC area -- unfortunately investors were looking for the next Netscape instead of the next Frederick Brewing Company), my partner and I used these all-wheat beers to demonstrate what a decoction process can do for flavor (not to mention that in an infusion environment, the mash would likely turn to concrete). People on the verge of plunging into the craft beer scene really seem to go for the all-wheat -- its a good "cross-over" beer. The batches we have made have been in the American Wheat style; I suggest using American Ale for a crisp, dry beer, or American Ale II for a fuller, more fruity beer. Use some good flavor hops (I suggest Sazz) -- up to 1oz per 5 gallons in the last 20 minutes or so. Also, you may want to toast a half to one pound of the wheat before mashing (say 10 minutes at 300F). You'll lose some enzymes, but there still should be enough left in the remaining untoasted wheat to convert the mash. HOP OIL: George asks about hop oil. I recently tried some of this stuff (I got mine from Freshops -- standard disclaimer applies). While I will stand by this supplier for whole leaf hops and rhizomes, YOU CAN HAVE WHATS LEFT OF MY SUPPLY (about .8 oz). I tried it in a pale ale. Thank God I kegged half the batch with leaf hops for aroma. I found the flavor and aroma (but as I recall flavor is 80% aroma) to be very pine like. I used about 2.5 drops per bottle. Maybe I did something wrong (could have pre-boiled it to tone it down? I dunno...), but I doubt I will ever try this stuff again. The beer isn't ruined, but I know its there and its hard to taste/smell anything but a Christmas tree..... FILTERING: Al again suggests that a 0.5 micron filter will strip the beer of flavor. While I haven't yet done any extensive testing, I hope to have some anecdotal evidence by June. I can say now that the beers that I have filtered have not suffered from any of the problems you descibe, even when compared to beers that were unfilted and bottled from the same batch. Again its too early to tell, but my preliminary results are that filtering, even at the 0.5 micron rating, does no apparent harm. But as I posted before, I'm not sure that the benefits outweigh the investment. I mean, I spent over $100 on my filtering settup, it more than doubles my packaging time (up to about 4 hrs now, soup to nuts, for a 12 Ga batch), and consumes a lot of CO2. Sure, the beer is clear (as long as you remember to chill well before you filter), and there is less sediment to deal with. The only potential benefit to the 0.5 micron may be sability. This is the primary reason, I think, professional brewers use this kind of "sterile" filtering. For homebrewers, perhaps less excess yeast and a sterile filtering process will prolong the shelf life of the homebrew, or keep the beer at its peak longer. I have no intention of attempting to measure this since there are so many other factors that play into the stability of my homebrew. I'm not shipping it in unfriendly environments or storing it at elevated temps in some stockroom, so what's the point? I expect that I will still continue to filter my beer -- maybe just out of sheer guilt that I spent $100 on this thing -- but I will probably switch to a 5 micron or 1 micron filter. This way I can get the primary benefits (clarity, less sediment) and perhaps speed up the filtering process (currently, it takes about an hour to pass 5 gals through my 0.5 micron filter). Chas Peterson Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 12:58:08 -0000 From: Graham Stone <gstone at dtuk.demon.co.uk> Subject: Bruheat boilers and stepped mashes Paul Ferrara writes re. BruHeat and Step Mashing and concludes... >Bottom Line: >If you're a fan of step mashing, don't plan on mashing in a BruHeat. I initially had the same problem with scorching the element (indeed the boiler kept cutting out) and I put it down to the fact that the 3mm hole in the false bottom supplied with the boiler were too large and letting through too much malt debris. I made my own false bottom out of sheet copper drilled with 100s of 2mm hole (boy, what a chore!!!) which improved matters but didn't cure the problem. I only made real progress when I kept the tap (I think you would refer to the "spigot"?) open all the time the heater element was on. Incidentally, I only allow the element to stay on for about 10s at a time with rests of about 30s between bursts of heat. While the heat is on and the tap in open, you naturally need to run the wort into a jug to collect it. Returning this hot wort to the top of the mash was what caused the temperature of the mash to rise rather than the heat transferring across the false bottom, IMHO. I also stirred the mash continuously to even the temperature. This method does work and I find very little if any scorching. However, it is a very manual process (one hand on the thermostat, one on the tap, one holding the jug, one stirring and the other holding the thermometer!). Incidentally, the distributor of Bruheat here in the UK acknowledge that the internal diameter of the tap is too small but have not been able to supply a larger one - this tends to be my biggest problem, the tap gets clogged with malt fragments. Bottom line: It *can* done but I've opted for recipes which favour single step infusions. Indeed my "Wife Lager" is also a single step process which she is very happy with (please, no flames about style, authenticity etc. - she likes it, so I don't care to complicate or lengthen the brewing procedure any more than necessary <g>). Graham Stone Portsmouth, UK Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 13:20:23 -0000 From: Graham Stone <gstone at dtuk.demon.co.uk> Subject: Brass beer engines Chas Peterson writes re. Beer Engine Source in London? >Does anyone out there know of someone I can contact in the London >area that might have a few of these "banned" engines? This is news to me as an English real ale / bitter drinker. Almost every pub in the UK serves cask conditioned beer and it will almost invariably be dispensed with a traditional hand pump which typically glistens with brightly polished brass. It's possible that the old brass barrel taps will have been replace with SS but you'd never know this without visiting the cellar. As for the rest of the mechanics of the beer engine, I'd be amazed if they weren't all original and hence still made of brass. Perhaps *new* beer engines are SS but the trend here is to keep the appear of all pub paraphernalia as olde worlde as possible. The chances of the breweries (who own the vast majority of the pubs) spending money on new equipment without a financial interest to do so is highly unlikely. CAMERA have been trying to get legislation about what constitutes "a pint of beer" for years without success. If brass beer engines have been made illegal, you'd never know it by visiting a pub and I've heard nothing about this in the news. Not much help am I <G>!!! Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 09:40:14 -0500 From: bdebolt at dow.com Subject: re: Dropping question, again This is a repeat question since I didn't get a response. Jeff Renner - can you provide any input? Has anyone dropped half of their fermenting wort, left the rest behind and then compared the two after bottling? Since I don't use a secondary anymore this would seem like an easy way to compare a dropped beer to my normal practice. Rack half the wort out of the primary at high krausen, then let the two batches finish side by side. I realize there are a lot of variables here besides just dropping, but wanted to check for experience before trying on my own. TIA, Bruce DeBolt Houston, TX bdebolt at dow.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 09:40:03 -0600 From: Chad_Bohl at dgii.com (Chad Bohl) Subject: Hacker Pschorr Recipe I'm looking for a good Hacker Pschorr Recipe. Does anyone have one? Extract or all-grain O.K. Thanks in advance, chadb Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 10:38:10 +0000 From: "Bill Giffin" <billgiffin at maine.com> Subject: Errors Good morning all, >>Al K sent this to me in a private email: Fix, Noonan, and Miller are all wrong about MgSO4. I know an awful lot about brewing and would bet I know more about brewing than Miller, and I'm about par with Noonan and Fix on *practical* brewing knowledge. All three of these books are full of errors, *especially* Noonan and Miller. I'm putting together a web page *listing* the errors in their books, page by page. << I just wonder for what purpose. *LISTING* the errors in their books page by page is that going to improve homebrewing? I don't think so. I have a great deal of respect for Fix, Miller and Noonan, they all have improved the quality of homebrewing in the U.S. so that now this country has the best homebrewers in the world. Perhaps Al needs to list all the errors to be "compleat" (my spell checker rejected this word as did some of our UK friends). Perhaps Al has to feel important. I just wonder if Al knows so much about brewing then why isn't he out there doing it instead of criticizing those who do? Isn't George a brewing consultant as well as an author? Haven't both Miller and Noonan started a couple of brew pubs? Al tell us about how you have set up and run a real brewery. You know one that sells its product to the paying public. Instead of nitpicking you should praise the effort of those who are honestly trying to help improve homebrewing. Or aren't you a big enough person to do that? Bill P.S. If you want to bash me please don't waste any more bandwidth and do it in private. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 97 10:34:58 EST From: Tim.Watkins at analog.com Subject: Multi Part, all grain Many thanks to all who responded to my post about the multi part all-grain. The general consensus was that it would work no problem, but it was an insane amount of work. For the record, I tried it (2 days, 2 mashes, etc.) and combined the two batches in a 6.5 gal plastic primary. Recipe was an IPA (10 lbs pale malt, 1 lb crystal (60L) 1 oz Perle pellets (7.3%), and 2oz Cascades cones (?%)) Did a single step infusion in my kettle. Mashed in at 153F and did my best to maintain it. Mashed for about 1.5 hours (performed iodine test to make sure). Sparged and collected 3.25 gallons in kettle and boiled. 1/2 oz perle for 60minutes, 1/2 cascade for 30min, and 1/2 oz cascade steeped at end of boil. The same for both batches. Used WYeast 1028, and fermented for 10 days. (After signs of fermentation began, I racked off the trub). Had a total volume of just over 4 gallons. I didn't take OG, but FG is 1.010. It's in a keg right now, carbonating, but the sample tasted great, nice and hoppy. From the initial results, I think I'm going to be an all-grainer from now on. The thing that most of the responders suggested was for me to but an 8gallon enamel pot ($30) and to do a full batch. My question is this: I only have an electric stove in my apartment. Is it possible to do a full wort boil (6.5 gallons) with this setup? I don't care how long it takes to get to a boil, I'm just wondering if the stove will be able to get it to boil. The other question is this, I've only got a 4 gallon kettle for which to mash in, and I've got a 5gal zapap style lauter tun. How much grain can I reasonable expect to mash? thanks again to all who responded, Tim - ----------------------- Tim Watkins Applications Engineer Analog Devices, Inc. (617) 937-1428 Tim.Watkins at analog.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 97 10:50:04 EST From: Tim.Watkins at analog.com Subject: Blonde Ale? On a separate note, has anyone brewed a Blonde Ale? My SO would like a blonde ale for her next batch, and I'm not sure how to go about it? A recipe would be nice, but if no one has one, style guidelines would be the next best thing. I've checked the Cat's Meow, and couldn't find a recipe, so I figured I'd check in here. Thanks, Tim - ----------------------- Tim Watkins Applications Engineer Analog Devices, Inc. (617) 937-1428 Tim.Watkins at analog.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 12:07:41 -0800 From: Rick Seibt <rseibt at machinedesign.com> Subject: Downtown Chicago Brewpubs Hello all, Travelling to Chicago in early March, and I'm looking to investigate new brewpubs / beer bars. We've done Goose Island and House of Beer in the past, and are looking for something else. I'll most likely be taking clients, so I'd prefer places that serve pretty good food. Also would like to stay in the Downtown area. Would any fellow Chicago brewers be kind enough to lend some suggestions? Private email is rseibt at machinedesign.com. TIA, and I'll buy you a beer if you come to Cleveland for the AHA Conference. Rick Seibt rseibt at machinedesign.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 08:57:03 -0800 From: "Mercer, David" <dmercer at path-seattle-01.path.org> Subject: RE: No sparge brew My thanks to Mike Spinelli who described his no-sparge method in HBD 2345: >After mashout, recirc'd til clear then drained with ball valve wide open >while >gently but quickly pouring pseudo sparge water ontop of grains from a gallon >pitcher. Stopped adding when approx. 10 gals. was collected in boil tun. >Topped off boil tun with additional 2 gals. of treated water to reach >pre-boil volume of 12 gals. Other than the short note by Dr. Fix in the Brewery library, this is the only reference I've seen in the HBD or the usual web sites that actually specifies a no-sparge procedure. I made a 'no sparge' English pale ale about a month ago by just draining the mash without adding any additional water to the grains (those of you with exceptional memories might remember I posted a question about the effects of failing to recirculate before draining the runnings). I tasted the first bottle last night, and it is exceptional. Smooth and malty with a soft mouthfeel unlike any other beer I've brewed. Even after just two weeks of conditioning the beer is remarkably clear - almost no chill haze, I presume because of a reduction in tannins. I'm a definite convert. Now I'm curious. Is there a 'correct' method for no sparge brewing? Mike's seems more to me like a 'quick sparge' than a 'no sparge'. But my intuitively arrived at method of just draining the wort produced less efficiency than a simple 4/3 adjustment of the grain bill would have predicted (I bumped a 12# recipe that in my system usually produces a 1.064 wort, up to 16#, but came out 8 points short (i.e. 1.054). Mike's was more efficient than he expected. How are others out there who have tried this doing it? Dave in Seattle Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 12:43:08 -0500 (EST) From: energo at fwai.org (Energo Ed) Subject: Re: Botulism Solved >Date: Tue, 11 Feb 1997 15:28:57 -0600 >From: Cuchulain Libby <hogan at connecti.com> >Subject: Botulism Solved > >Greetings All, >I quote from a syndicated columnist in today's San Antonio Express News. > >"British lab scientists cultivated bacteria colonies of the kind most >associated with food poisoning. Then poured one alcoholic beverage after >another over samplings of each. To learn most liqours had little effect, >but wine killed almost all bacteria." > >So then, do we mash, sparge, boil, or bottle it in our beer? >Cuchulain Botulism is not mostly associated with food poisoning. It's rather rare. The most likely culprits are Salmonella, Staphlococcus, or E.coli. Energo Ed Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 11:19:37 -0700 From: Michael Caprara <mcaprara at awwarf.com> Subject: New rules on internet access -Reply To arms! To arms! If you choose to respond, the cut-off date is Feb 13th. ******************************************************* This will impact us all! Please read on..... I am writing you this to inform you of a very important matter currently under review by the FCC. Your local telephone company has filed a proposal with the FCC to impose per minute charges for your internet service. They contend that your usage has or will hinder the operation of the telephone network. It is my belief that internet usage will diminish if users were required to pay additional per minute charges. The FCC has created an email box for your comments, responses must be received by February 13, 1997. Send your comments to isp at fcc.gov and tell them what you think. Every phone company is in on this one, and they are trying to sneak it in just under the wire for litiagation. Let everyone you know here this one. Get the e-mail address to everyone you can think of. isp at fcc.gov Please forward this email to all your friends on the internet so all our voices may be heard! Please pass this along... Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 12:03:18 -0800 From: cathy <cathy at aob.org> Subject: AOB Tax Forms As you know, Jim Liddil has requested space to post our 1995 IRS tax return. As we have explained in the past this is public information which can be obtained through the IRS office or if you visit our ffices in Boulder Colorado. One reason we ask people to come to our office to review these documents is because there can be some confusion in the format presented (after all there is 35 pages). To keep AHA members informed we publish financial information about the AHA annually in Zymurgy (fall 1996). To help put our tax form contents in perspective, I've attached additional data which may be helpful. AOB Sources of Revenue 1995 AHA Membership $518,376 15.53% IBS Membership $224,517 6.73% Other Programs $2,594,874 77.74% Total $3,337,767 100% Revenue by Division AHA 32% IBS 34% AOB 13% BP 14% INT'L 7% Expenses by Division AHA 32% IBS 22% AOB 30% BP 9% INT'L 7% 1995 Revenue for the Company as a Whole by Category AHA Memberships 15% IBS Memberships 6% Conferences 17% Advertising 17% BP Books 13% New Brewer Subscriptions 2% Sponsorship 6% Other 4% Merchandise 6% (hats, t-shirts, etc.) Magazine Sales 6% (resale and back issue sales of The New Brewer & Zym.) Projects 5% (many IBS items, tours) Management Fee 3% (the GABF pays a mgmt. fee to the AOB for services) 1995 Total Expenditures for the company as a whole by category Travel 3% Salaries 26% Conferences 10% Printing 12% Outside Services 5% (photo processors, book indexers, etc.) Contract Labor 5% (people who do work on contract) Commission and Royalties 5% All other 34% (none of these categories is over 3% of total) Analysis of Association CEO's Annual Salaries Source: American Society of Assoc. Executives Annual Revenue CEO Compensation Percent of Rev. $3,347,055 (avg) $179,192 (avg) 5.35% (avg) $3,337,767 (AOB) $101,284 (AOB) 3.03% (AOB) We have tried to give you "in a nut shell" what's contained in those 35 pages of very dry tax forms. Please note that the Great American Beer Festival is not included because it is run by a separate company. The AOB is made up of 36 people who are committed to providing you with the best in brewing information. Serving our members, including AHA and IBS, as well as the brewing communities, is always our primary goal. Thanks for your continued support. Cheers! Cathy Ewing - -- Cathy Ewing Vice President Association of Brewers (303) 447-0816 x 120 (voice) 736 Pearl Street (303) 447-2825 (fax) PO Box 1679 cathy at aob.org (e-mail) Boulder, CO 80306-1679 info at aob.org (aob info) U.S.A. http://beertown.org (web) Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 13:10:24 -0600 (CST) From: korz at xnet.com Subject: skunking John writes: >Frequently I have had a clear glass of beer outside in the sun for some time >with no noticeable (to me) effect on the taste or aroma. Am I peculiarly >insensitive to skunkiness or just lucky? My experience indicates skunking may >be a sometime thing rather than a sure one. Besides, almost every beer store >I go into has their beer stored in well lighted areas. I know some (Miller, >for example) use special hop extracts which are supposed to avoid skunking >but what of the rest? Has this danger been exaggerated? Are we scaring >ourselves to death? Perhaps you are simply not sensitive to prenyl mercaptan. Try this: go to a store that sells single bottles of beer from a cooler lit with fluorescent lights. Take two bottles of Heineken or Pilsner Urquell from the cooler (the closer to the lights the better). Go over to the sealed cases of the same beer and swap one of your irradiated bottles with one that has never seen light. Buy them, take them home, chill both for only a few hours (a few days at 50F actually seems to reverse the reaction) and compare their aromas. Say... if the store has cases of Heineken or PU cold, you could probably do the experment for free: challenge the store manager... open two bottles (dark and skunked) in the manager's office and compare! I'm sure every store mgr has seen Bud's "skunky beer" commercials by now. Al. Al Korzonas, Palos Hills, IL korz at xnet.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 13:09:38 -0600 From: layton at sc45.dseg.ti.com (James R. Layton 972.952.3718 JLAY) Subject: skunking experiment and starter aeration The subject of skunked beer comes up in this forum from time to time, and it seems that some brewers are uncertain about what conditions can cause the phenomenon. An experiment I performed last summer certainly educated me as to one way to skunk beer and just what it tastes/smells like. I simply placed a bottle of homebrewed pale ale (a clear bottle in this case) outside on a normal August evening in direct sunshine (temp around 92F) for a period of 2-3 hours. The bottle was then refrigerated overnight and sampled alongside a control bottle of the same brew (also in a clear bottle). The exposed bottle was definitely skunked and very reminiscent of bottled Heineken, PU, etc. available here. I urge interested brewers to perform their own experiments in order to satisfy their curiosity. It only costs one bottle and the result is not undrinkable, just different. I should try this again in order to determine if heat was a significant factor or if heat and light work together in a synergistic manner. - ------------------ Harlan Bauer writes: > Then when I want to step up, I simply pull a jar off the shelf with >the appropriate quantity of wort, shake vigorously to aerate, open the lid >and pour in the yeast. Sterile wort AND sterile aeration. I won't dispute that Harlan gets good results using this method, but I doubt that shaking the wort prior to opening the jar really dissolves much oxygen. It is my understanding that during the pressure canning process, most if not all of the air trapped under the lid of the jar is blown out from under the lid along with a good deal of water vapor (steam) from the liquid content of the jar. Then, as the jar cools, a partial vacuum is formed under the lid as it seals against the mouth of the jar. The gas remaining in the jar's headspace is mostly water vapor, thus pressure inside the jar is the vapor pressure of water while pressure outside the jar is ambient air pressure. This is the "vacuum" seal we rely on to hold the lid in place. The same principle applies to boiling water bath canning. I suspect that Harlan's yeast get their oxygen from air allowed into the container after the lid is removed. Jim Layton, homebrewer and canner Howe, TX layton at sc45.dseg.ti.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 13:40:23 -0600 (CST) From: korz at xnet.com Subject: sterile aeration Harlan writes: >A good idea I read in Pierre Rajotte's book *First Steps in Yeast Culturing* >is to reuse juice and baby-food jars. The advantage of using them is that >they can be filled part way, sterilized, and the air as well as the wort is >sterile. Then when I want to step up, I simply pull a jar off the shelf with >the appropriate quantity of wort, shake vigorously to aerate, open the lid >and pour in the yeast. Sterile wort AND sterile aeration. I don't think that's right. I believe that the headspace in the jars would contain sterile water vapor, not sterile air. Right? Al. Al Korzonas, Palos Hills, IL korz at xnet.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 13:48:49 -0600 (CST) From: korz at xnet.com Subject: trub-free starters Harlan also writes (shoot): >First, I always pressure cook the wort twice, once in a mason jar for bulk >storage and to drop ALL the sediment; and then I decant into the various >sized recipients enumerated above and pressure cook again. The advantage of >this method (also described in Rajotte) is absolutely trub-free starters. Absolutely trub-free starters (in my opinion) are not the best thing. Trub contains many yeast nutrients so that leaving some trub in the wort (and certainly in the starter wort) is believed to be beneficial to the yeast. It's clear that too much trub in the main wort can lead to haze and (possibly) increased higher (fusel) alcohol production, but personally, I believe that these would be negligible in a starter and the sterols from the trub would only help. Comments? Al. Al Korzonas, Palos Hills, IL korz at xnet.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 14:08:12 -0500 From: Mark Pfortmiller <MPFORTMILLER at PRINTPACK.COM> Subject: Im looking for information on growing Hops. Were do i buy the rizones (sic) to plant. Private e-mail cool TIA Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 15:36:38 -0500 From: Dave Whitman <dwhitman at rohmhaas.com> Subject: canning wort A couple HBD's back, Louis Gordon asked: >I have pressure canned my wort in the >past. The problem is that (I assume since I cannot see it) the wort foams >up in the mason jars and most of it winds up in the canning pot. Does >this leave us with only making the wort when ready to use or is there a >way to can without foaming. The only time I ever had wort foam out of my jars was when I didn't let the canner cool down long enough before releasing the pressure. During pressure canning, the wort isn't directly heated, but is instead indirectly heated by steam. The steam is at the boiling point of water under the applied pressure. Since at any given pressure wort boils at a higher temperature than water, I don't expect that the wort boils at all during the heating phase. The problem comes in when you release the pressure. The wort is superheated with respect to atmospheric pressure, so that if you suddenly drop the pressure, it'll immediately boil violently, causing your observed foaming. To safely release the pressure, you want to let the canner cool down until the wort samples are below their boiling point at atmospheric pressure, THEN release the pressure while they're still hot enough to vacuum seal when you tighten the caps. If you have instructions that came with the canner, look in the fine print to see if they have a suggested cooling time before opening, otherwise just experiment. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 15:49:27 -0500 (EST) From: Pat Babcock <pbabcock at mail.oeonline.com> Subject: Botulism Greetings, Beerlings! Take me to your lager.... Scott Murman keeps talking about vacuums... Scott: A mild correction. C. Botulinum is an anaerobe. This simply means it functions in an environment free of oxygen. Though vacuums are generally free of oxygen (since they're pretty much free of air at completion), so is a CO2 purged cornie, for example. The point being that you can be free of oxygen without being free of air (vacuum). Whether a refrigerated bottle of wort creates a partial vacuum has little bearing on the oxygenation of the content. See ya! Pat Babcock | "Beer is my obsession, and I'm late for President, Brew-Master | therapy..." -PGB and Chief Taste-Tester | "Let a good beer be the exclamation point Drinkur Purdee pico Brewery | at the end of your day as every sentence pbabcock at oeonline.com | requires proper punctuation." -PGB Webmaster of the Home Brew Page http://oeonline.com/~pbabcock/brew.html Home of the Home Brew Flea Market Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 16:31:51 +0000 From: Darrin Pertschi <darrinp at cowles.com> Subject: Sorry Sorry - -- Darrin in Central PA Proprietor--Simpleton's Cosmic Brewery - --------------------------------------------- You never know just how you look through other peoples eyes. <B.H.S.> Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 16:32:02 +0000 From: Darrin Pertschi <darrinp at cowles.com> Subject: Sorry Sorry - -- Darrin in Central PA Proprietor--Simpleton's Cosmic Brewery - --------------------------------------------- You never know just how you look through other peoples eyes. <B.H.S.> Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 13:43:55 +0000 From: Chris White <whitelab at fia.net> Subject: Re: White Labs Yeast Test Results (Chris White) Sorry for the length of this post, but I feel there are a lot of issues which need to be discussed. I would like to respond to questions in HBD 2342 regarding White Lab's cell count, but first I would like to give you some back-ground on our company. White Labs began selling homebrew yeast cultures in San Diego, CA in the middle of 1993. In May of 1996, we began to expand production and distribution into other states. Before we expanded our production, White Labs sold approximately 9,000 vials in the San Diego area. Most of these sales were repeat customers who came back for the high quality and consistency of our product. Many of our customers are advanced homebrewers who understand the need for short lag times. White Labs began with the intention to offer a higher cell count, per package, product than any other liquid yeast supplier. As homebrewers, we wanted to produce yeast cultures that had pitchable quantities of yeast for 5 gallons. This took a while to perfect and figure out. Ultimately, our goal was to put the yeast from a pint size starter culture into a 50ml tube. We have been able to accomplish this successfully. The average lag time for 5 gallons for the different strains is about 8 to 12 hours. This lag time cannot be obtained with under pitching as generally witnessed by other products used without starters. The reason we have such a following in the stores which carry our product is due to the fact that our yeast cultures are very high quality and they actually produce short lag times. Our cell counts, per vial, have always been consistent with those of a pint size starter. In addition, our cell counts are at least 10 times higher than a fully swelled smack-pack. White Labs primary intentions have always been to supply homebrewers and commercial brewers with the highest quality yeasts. Initially when we prepared the #'s for literature on our product, we used a spectrophotometer to measure cell concentrations. This is a very common laboratory procedure when counting yeast and bacteria, and we routinely use the spec. for our analytical tests. But when using a spec. to measure cell concentrations, you must first calibrate the spectrophotometer with readings from cell counts done under a microscope. We initially did this with an English yeast we were producing. (Not the same English yeast Mr. Liddil tested, but just about as flocculant) We didn't change the calibration with the other strains because I felt (from prior experience with other yeasts) that the #'s would be close, maybe 2-3 fold, but certainly not 10 fold. We also had other labs report cell numbers to us that matched ours. So I felt pretty confident to put that number on our literature, solely as an informational piece. We have not included the numbers on our products themselves. We did some extensive cell counts over the last two days, and have found by counting cells that we have between 40 to 75 billion cells per vial. But our product has never changed, unfortunately our cell count #'s were incorrect. There was certainly no deceit intended. We sincerely believed that the literature reflected our yeast counts. Our customers routinely experience lag times of 8-12 hours in their 5 gallon batchs without propagating our product. Some may feel that 8-12 hour lag times are inadequate. Starters can always be made from our products, if more than a pint size starter is desired. We have spent more time with quality control procedures such as cell viability (98 to 99% when we bottle) and differential plating. And we count every batch (with the spectrophotometer) before pouring out, it's just our base numbers were off, and have always been off by the same margin. As I've said, the concentration of cells in our vials has always been comparable to a pint starter. So we'll remove the talk of cell numbers from our literature, which frankly only a few people have looked at anyway. We will concentrate more on just a general comparison to a typical pint starter. I'm thankful for people to point this out now because I don't what any erroneous information out there on our products (especially since we're preparing new literature!), but I have full confidence in our products that they do what they say they will do. That is, start a 5 gallon batch of beer with a lag time corresponding to a pint starter. We're always interested in what our customers have to say about our product, and sometimes you learn from your mistakes. Also, we have begun to place a bottling date on our vials, ensuring our customers of the freshness of our yeast. If there are any more questions, feel free to direct them my way. I will try and respond quickly, but please be patient because we are in the middle of moving our operations to a larger facility in the Miramar area of San Diego. Thank you for your time, Chris White Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 16:51:46 -0500 From: Spencer W Thomas <spencer at engin.umich.edu> Subject: Botulism (NO, NOT THAT!) Check out http://vm.cfsan.fda.gov/~mow/chap2.html. Return to table of contents