HOMEBREW Digest #2432 Tue 03 June 1997

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		Digest Janitor: janitor@hbd.org
		Many thanks to the Observer & Eccentric Newspapers of 
		Livonia, Michigan for sponsoring the Homebrew Digest.
				URL: http://www.oeonline.com

  Diacetyl Rest: Classical or Practical? ("Dr. Pivo")
  50% Unmalted Wheat & Conversion ( Wit ) (KennyEddy)
  Propane & Natural Gas / Bubbles in Sparge Line ("F.J. Warner")
  stuck fermentation smells (kathy)
  Re: Soda ("Brian M. Rezac")
  2l Coke bottles (PAUL W HAAF JR)
  Fasch Frisch Replacement Dip Tube (shaun.funk)
  keg sealing ("Bryan L. Gros")
  FW: Underhopping ("Little, Wayne")
  Re: Wheat beer / salt additions ("Hubert Hanghofer")
  CNN online (Jeremy Bergsman)
  Re: Pondering the imponderable (Jason Henning)
  Re-hydrate Irish Moss? (BernardCh)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Mon, 02 Jun 1997 11:43:36 +0100 From: "Dr. Pivo" <irv at wireworks.se> Subject: Diacetyl Rest: Classical or Practical? In 2429 Al. Korz correctly described the procedure for the classic German diacetyl rest. This seems to be often quoted and perpetrated in the homebrewing circles I've glanced in at. I would like to point out that this is far from the only solution to that "problem", and it might be better to understand a diacetyl rest as "anything that reduces diacetyls". I have recently watched a diacetyl rest taking place which caused about a 40-50 percent reduction, while REDUCING the temperature from 5C to 3C over a period of two days. There was one yeast extraction performed at the beginning, and one at the end of the rest. I have a feeling that with the invasion of CKT technology in the industry (and even amongst homebrewers?) that these kinds of solutions will be sought after more and more often. So why even bother to mention it? The production of diacetyls ( and subsequent resorbtion) is a complicated process that I don't pretend to understand very well. It will depend on yeast strain, temperature, AND the oxidative potential in your goods... some of this stuff is forming spontaneously. Why I suggest a note of caution here, is that there are yeast strains that under certain conditions will actually PRODUCE diacetyls with a raising of temperature. You might want to control that you actually would have gotten diacetyls without the classical rest, and you are reducing them with it, before making it a standard part of your lager brewing. The particular German "allergy" to diacetyls in their light lagers (In professional German brewing circles, Pilsner Urquell is facetiously referred to as "Diacetylator"), and their traditional diacetyl rest solution for this, may not be the most efficient or even effective method for achieving this, with the lagering techniques and yeast strains that you are using. The reason I've invested a bit of thought in this, is I happen to be one of those that LOVE that diacetyl taste, and have chased it somewhat methodically. There are innumerous ways to achieve them (and seemingly, to my regret, even more ways to lose them), and one might win a bit by playing with your own yeast strain and lagering conditions, than slavishly following a tradition. That method has developed "hand in hand" with their entire lagering technique, and just MAY have more to do with the practicality of the ambient temperatures that were available, than being a particularly efficient technique. Just some liquid food for thought. Dr. Pivo Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 2 Jun 1997 08:25:20 -0400 (EDT) From: KennyEddy at aol.com Subject: 50% Unmalted Wheat & Conversion ( Wit ) MarkTomusiak wrote: "This being said, a few weeks ago I made a Belgian Wit using the standard 50% DWC Pils malt and 50% unmalted wheat berries, and while my efficiency was a little bit lower than usual, the enzymes in the pils malt were clearly able to convert a lot more than a 15 or 20% adjunct level. Does anybody have any thoughts on this discrepancy between theory and practise?" Just for the record I just made a Wit using 50% Belgian Pils, 45% raw wheat, and 5% oats, with no conversion problems and like Mark, only slightly lower efficiency (got 1.047 expecting 1.050). Mark, did you pre-gelatinize (cook) the wheat first? Although an HBD archive search indicated that it's not necessary to cook the wheat to gelatinize (gel temp is around 130F if I remember right), I did anyway. I figured even if it gels in the mash, it'll still take time and I'd rather do it up front ot give the enzymes easier and quicker access. To avoid scorching, what I did (for this grain bill) was to boil half my strike water, turn off the heat, add the wheat & oats, and allow to sit 30 minutes, stirring occasionally until the temperature dropped to about 175F. This produced essentially cream-o-wheat; thisck and gooey. I then added the other half of the strike water (at about 80F), stirred well, then finally added the pils malt to achieve a mid- to upper-120's temperature. The cream-o-wheat temperature should be as high above your target rest temp as your tap water is below it (48 degrees from 127F in my case) to hit your target temp right on. The lautering was a bit slow but never really "stuck"; I did stop once (about 25% through), stir, and recirculate, and this seemed to help a bunch. Ken Schwartz El Paso, TX KennyEddy at aol.com http://members.aol.com/kennyeddy Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 02 Jun 1997 09:24:07 -0400 From: "F.J. Warner" <fjwiii at kodak.com> Subject: Propane & Natural Gas / Bubbles in Sparge Line I have a few questions needing some insight. 1) I'm setting up a multiple burner unit for brewing with propane but was wondering what the compatibility to natural gas would be. I'm pretty sure the system gas regulator would be different for natural gas, but would the same burners be appropriate? Are there orifice size or air mixture ratio requirements? Any insight would be great. I got some info from previous HBD volumes but not to many specifics with reasons. I was looking for a summary called out in HBD 1096 but it does not appear to have been posted. 2) While brewing I have noticed gas bubbles in the outflow from my mash-tun (Keg with false bottom) while sparging. More at the beginning while the mash was hotter than by the end when it had cooled somewhat. What are the bubbles and where are they coming from. Is this gas trapped in solution coming out in the run-off flow, maybe they are steam bubbles? Should there be any worries? HSA? I'm very confident the hose is clamped to the hose barb on the mash-tun so that air is not being pulled into the hose as the wort flows through. TIA, Fred Warner warner at ttc.kodak.com Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 02 Jun 1997 09:03:33 -0500 From: kathy <kbooth at scnc.waverly.k12.mi.us> Subject: stuck fermentation smells I was using a revival recipe of 2#corn meal adjunct with 6# 6-row. P;itched with Wyeast American 2035 which had been stepped up a couple times but in a somewhat stop and start fashion as brew day was postponed. It started at 1.044 and stuck at 1.024. It had a funky smell which I've only experienced once before when another batch of IPA stuck 3-4 years ago. I had taken a bottle of that to a home-brew contest to see if experience brewers could identify the smell. No hits. I added the yeast of a batch of Munich type lager yeast saved from a previous brew and it fermented to 1.008. The funky smell survived but the taste is good pre=bottling. The smell is not the buttery or sweet-corn or cardboard or others I can describe, but it is definitely a cousin of the stuck fermentation of 1994. Has anybody had this experience and a description of the smell? jim booth at kbooth at waverly.k12.mi.us Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 2 Jun 1997 05:56:34 -0600 From: "Brian M. Rezac" <brian at aob.org> Subject: Re: Soda In HBD #2430 (May 30, 1997), Michael Aesoph wrote: > Dear Collective: > I am looking for some home made soda recipes using natural ingredients, > not kits. I know I've posted this request before, but didn't get any > responses, sorry about the repeat. Michael, The last issue of Zymurgy (Summer 1997) has an excellent article on making sodas. While the article covers a few options, including commercially available flavorings, on page 29 it includes a recipe by Polly Goldman of Alexandria, Va. for a "soda base". Once you've made this soda base, you can then add any flavoring you want. I have personally used it recently for my Creamsicle Soda, made with natural orange and vanilla flavorings. It came out great! Here's the recipe: SODA BASE by Polly Goldman, Alexandria, Virginia Five Gallons of Soda Soda Base: Boil 3 gallons of water Add: 2 lbs Sugar 2 1/2 lbs Honey (gives the soda more body than just plain sugar) 2 - 4 fl oz Lemon Juice (the citric acid from the lemon makes the soda less cloying) Add appropriate flavorings, rack to a Cornelius keg, top it up to 5 gallons, carbonate. Paraphrased from Zymurgy, Vol. 20, No. 2, Summer 1997, pg 29 There are many suggestions in the article for different flavorings (including Garlic soda) and it makes for excellent reading. But, I'll let you play with it. Keep Brewin' - Brian Brian Rezac Administrator American Homebrewers Association (303) 447-0816 x 121 (voice) 736 Pearl Street (303) 447-2825 (fax) PO Box 1679 brian 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: Mon, 02 Jun 1997 10:31:29 EDT From: haafbrau1 at juno.com (PAUL W HAAF JR) Subject: 2l Coke bottles In my experience with 2l coke bottles is 3 to 3 1/2" headspace works best. Do not squeeze the bottle after drinking as this will draw out the CO2. I have found 1l selter or spring water bottles far superior for several reasons: 1) Easier cleaning, don't have to fight that soda smell 2) If you don't have a Carbonator, you're opening less at a time 3) Easier storage 4) bottle is sturdier (same thickness plastic, less to hold) The headspace for 1L is about 2 1/2". If you just really like the Coke label, use the 20 oz or 32 oz size bottle. All of these work best if you have a Carbonator, (in which case ,squeeze the bottle) but if you don't, a 2L opened is almost as bad as an open pitcher put in the fridge. Hope this helps. I'm hooked on plastic when I'm not kegging for several other reasons: A) You don't have to worry about cleaning/bring back empties when you travel B) Less chance of explosion, bottle bombs safer C) The Carbonator (NO affiliation Blaa,blaa,blaa, it's just really cool!) D) another reason or two that escapes me at the moment This is what works best for me. Your results may vary. By the way, I do have an extensive glass stockpile of at least five sizes and Grolsch bottles (green and tan). Beer... "a high and mighty liquor" - Julius Caesar Paul Haaf haafbrau1 at juno.com Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 2 Jun 1997 11:42:17 -0500 From: shaun.funk at slkp.com Subject: Fasch Frisch Replacement Dip Tube I posted a request for information on 5/16 concerning finding a metal=20 replacement=20 dip tube for my Fasch Frisch mini-keg CO2 tapper. No one was able to give m= e a=20 concrete=20 answer to my question.=20 As I mentioned I had found a metal dip tube for the Party Star de Luxe keg=20 tapper in the Northern Brewer catalog. I called them up and they couldn't guarantee=20= that=20 it would fit, but they said if it didn't fit I could send it back. =20 Well It fit. It was not cheap, but if anyone needs one, here's the info:=20= =20 Ultra-Revolutionary=20 Dip Tube, catalog number 7801, $17.50 + S&H. Northern Brewer's web site c= an=20 be found=20 at www.nbrewer.com ( no affiliation, yada, yada , yada) and their catalog i= s=20 on-line. Now I have another mini-keg question. I have used the mini-kegs for 4 batc= hes=20 and have yet to acheive consistent and predicable carbonation levels. I have been u= sing=20 the=20 recommened 1 tablespoon of priming sugar per keg. Most ( not all) of my=20 mini-kegged brew=20 has been flat. Obviously I can try increasing the priming sugar, but rathe= r=20 than solve this through=20 trial and error I would like to hear from anybody who has had better luck=20 carbonating these=20 things. Thanks, Shaun Brews Funk Clemmons, NC shaun.funk at slkp.com=01; Return to table of contents
Date-warning: Date header was inserted by ctrvax.Vanderbilt.Edu From: "Bryan L. Gros" <grosbl at ctrvax.Vanderbilt.Edu> Subject: keg sealing Laura (Barrowman at aol.com) writes: > >As a result of the wonderful draft system my father picked up at a garage >sale: > >I have a couple of cornie kegs that are dented around the top preventing a >good seal around the oval lid. I have tried scads of keg lube with no luck. >Does anyone have any advice on how to straighten these out? congratulations on your find. You can always buy new lids from kegging places (try Braukunst or look in the back of Brewing Techniques/Zymurgy). If a new lid and new Oring and some pliers don't work, you can always use the kegs as fermenters. - Bryan grosbl at ctrvax.vanderbilt.edu Music City Brewers, Nashville, TN Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 2 Jun 1997 13:42:12 -0400 From: "Little, Wayne" <LittleW at od31.nidr.nih.gov> Subject: FW: Underhopping I just set up a 5 gallon batch of California Common using 6.6 lb of light LME with 1 lb each of crystal and toasted malts steeped in. After cooling in a cold water bath, poured into primary bucket and pitched 1 pt of active starter. Signs of fermentation started in 3-4 hrs. Problem was in the hopping. I was having a mind lapse and threw in one plug of Northern Brewer at 60 min., another plug at 15 min., and 1 oz of Cascade pellets at 2 min. The plugs were only 1/2 oz each ( not the 1 oz I had a mind-set on), so I have half the amount of Northern Brewer that I intended. It has been suggested that I make a hop tea and add at about day 7 after the fermentation has died down. Does this make sense, and if so, any suggestions on the best way to do it? This basic recipe has worked very well in the past, but I always used only pellets, and I think a strong NB component is essential to balance the malty sweetness of this style. Thanks, and private email is fine. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 2 Jun 1997 21:25:16 +0200 From: "Hubert Hanghofer" <hhanghof at netbeer.co.at> Subject: Re: Wheat beer / salt additions In HBD #2431 George De Piro <George_De_Piro at berlex.com> wrote: > Ing. Hubert (is that right?) and Oliver write in about wheat beers. [snip] > The clear versions of Weizens that they mention are a different > substyle, called Kristal Weizen. These are filtered, and are > generally lower in body and flavor than their unfiltered kin. Thanks for adding your truly informative comments, George! I think however, we have to work on the clarity of our expression, because we didn't mean Kristall Weizen, we posted on cloudiness / clarity of Hefe Weizen, both homebrew and commercial grades. Hefe Weizen in the bottle -or poured into the glass (when leaving yeast sediment and cold break behind)- maybe nearly clear (at least by homebrewing standards), but cloudiness is acceptable. We thought, we should mention this, because it seemed to us, that there could be Style Guidelines existing that tell you, it has to be cloudy, otherwise it's not to style. We personally feel, backed up by our experience, such guidelines should be reconsidered. - ---------------- In HBD #2431 Brewers Beer Gear <brewers at brewgear.com> wrote: > traditional German brewing would not advocate adding either salts or > acid to a brew; an acid rest would be a more style-appropriate practice > in order to let the lactic acid bacteria naturally present in the malt > acidify the mash without violating Rheinheitsgebot. This is the *classic* traditional way, we're recommending, too. But classic restrictions ended sometimes ago in the wild 60's. Since then, German brewers were allowed to add water salts to adjust water chemistry (residual alkalinity, to be more exact). Since then, adding salts is no violation anymore. Additions of acids are forbidden however! I've found that most breweries use gypsum, but also Calcium Chloride. I personally prefer Calcium Chloride, when brewing full bodied, but mild Bavarian style beers (Helles Lager, Weizen). Gypsum gives a more dry character, which should be more appropriate for Northern Germany Style Pilseners. German Literature (L.Narziss) recommends, not to use more than 0,3 grams Gypsum per Liter of brewing water (that should be 1.14 grams per US gallon). To avoid confusion, this refers to German style beers, of course, not e.g. to Burton Ale! The usage of Chlorides is limited by corrosive effects on stainless steels and should be kept below 100 ppm Cl. I've tried up to 300 ppm Cl and recorded no salty taste, however my kettle showed some of those corrosive effects. For those of you, who want to know a bit more on that, I think I needn't waste bandwith here, I've made a simple and short summary in http://www.netbeer.co.at/beer/english/tips.htm Cheers & Sehr zum Wohle! Hubert Ing. Hubert Hanghofer <hhanghof at netbeer.co.at> Salzburg, AUSTRIA Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 02 Jun 1997 16:43:09 -0700 From: Jeremy Bergsman <jeremybb at leland.Stanford.EDU> Subject: CNN online I'm surprised no one has posted about this yet. CNN online has a bunch of info on homebrewing, featuring our friend, Charlie P. Let me propose that you try to hold back on your flames once you've seen it. http://cnnplus.cnn.com/consumer/food/beverages/alcohol/homebrew/index.html - -- Jeremy Bergsman jeremybb at stanford.edu http://www-leland.stanford.edu/~jeremybb Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 02 Jun 1997 18:26:19 -0700 From: Jason Henning <huskers at cco.net> Subject: Re: Pondering the imponderable Bat Pabcock observes UFOs (unforseen fermention obsticles) and reports: > > Greetings, Beerlings! Take me to your lager.... > > Today, my friend and I were discussing threads that would not die, > when I accidentally popped my stopper into the carboy and the > waiting wort. Undaunted, I plunged... > [snip] With the stopper buried on the bottom. The ferment was... > [snip] Or should I remove the stopper first? By the way... > [snip] But: is my stopper ruined? I've never had anything like this happen to me but I don't think the stoppers ruined. I could give a better opinion if I just had some evidence one way or the other. Maybe now would be a good time to invert the carboy. You could cut a hole in the bottom (soon to be the top) and retrive the stopper. Be sure to make the hole big enough to stick your hand in. Has anyone ever tried cutting a hole in a carboy? > Undaunted, I plunged my arm, up to the elbow into the wort before > I realized that my arm can't fit into the neck. Besides, it wasn't > sanitized. Body parts need to be boiled for 15 minutes before introducing them into the wort. Once boiled, you can do as much undaunted arm plunging as you want. > Satisfied, I popped my smack-pack, opened it and dumped the yeast > in. Fifteen and a half seconds later, I realized that nothing was > happening. To save the batch... > [snip] Why was the lag time so long? Always used a starter. Boil 1/3 cup water and 4 cups dry malt extract (or was that 4 c water and 1/3 c DME) for 15 minutes then removing from heat. Smack the slap-pack and added. Then add this to carboy after flaming the mouth. > In the bottom of the fermenter sat 20 inches of yeast cake! > [snip] Is it safe to pitch my next batch over this yeast cake? I strongly recommend not pitching a hefe. You can't have your yeast cake and drink it too. > By the way the batch, A Belgian Pumpernickel Hefe-Stouten Scotch > Ale, turned out great, though a bit "catty". > [snip] but I combed a cat's hair backwards, then tossed the cat > in to attract any haze compounds.) I'd say this is cause-and-effect, add a cat and it's going to be 'catty'. But I bet it's still awesome. What category would you place it in? It sounds like a braggot without the honey. Cheers, Jason Henning (huskers at cco.net) Big Red Alchemy and Brewing Olympia, Washington - "It's the shoes" What? Me worry? - Alfred E. Newman Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 2 Jun 1997 22:26:55 -0400 (EDT) From: BernardCh at aol.com Subject: Re-hydrate Irish Moss? I seem to remember reading recently (but can't remember where) that if irish moss were added during the last fifteen minutes of the boil, that it should be re-hydrated first. Up unitl that time I was just dumping in the powdered flakes at T=15. For my last two batches, during the sparge I prepared a mixture of my Irish moss and about 1 cup H2O and left the moss sit to rehydrate until the T=15 minute mark, when I dumped it into my wort. After chilling to 75-80F (2 stage immersion, 1st chiller in ice bath) and whirlpooling I've noticed what appears to be a tremendous difference in the amount of break material left in the kettle and how little ends up in the carboy. In the pre-re-hydrate days it was not unusual to have 3 - 4" inches of "stuff" settle out in the carboy. For the last two batches the amount of settled break, yeast etc. was less than 1.5 inches. I typically use 1/4 - 1/3 ounce of the flakes in a batch. Is this amount underkill, overkill or about right. I know I've seen improvement here, but why? What is it about Irish moss that causes it to "perform" better if Its re-hydrated first? Anyone? Chuck BernardCh at aol.com Music City Brewers - Nashville, TN - "Music City USA" Return to table of contents