HOMEBREW Digest #3370 Thu 06 July 2000

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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

  Buble Counter ("Sandy Macmillan")
  re: phenolic flavors ("Stephen Alexander")
  Let's Hop on Regan ("Phil & Jill Yates")
  Aussies!?! (David Sweeney)
  Bavarian Helles (Chuck Mryglot)
  also sprach zarathustra (Jim Liddil)
  pH (Marc Sedam)
  More on souring wits (Jim Layton)
  Re: Siphoning easily & safely (Spencer W Thomas)
  Contamination by Lambics ("Pannicke, Glen A.")
  New Wyeast 1332 NW ale ("Strom C. Thacker")
  re: water analysis ("Brian Lundeen")
  Re: Stroh's Signature (Anthony and Mary Ann Tantillo)
  Rimmers (Dan Listermann)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Wed, 5 Jul 2000 08:00:43 +0300 From: "Sandy Macmillan" <scotsman at kems.net> Subject: Buble Counter There was a thread some time ago suggesting ways to log a fermentation, including a bubble counter. I was dismantling a mouse, electronic type!, and note that this contains light emitting diode and receiver. Any genius out there can tell me how to modify this mouse bit to count bubble at the fermentation lock? Sandy Macmillan Brewing in a dry place Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 5 Jul 2000 04:59:15 -0400 From: "Stephen Alexander" <steve-alexander at worldnet.att.net> Subject: re: phenolic flavors Dan Lyga asks ... >I brewed a Kolsch ... I noticed a "strange" aroma from this >... medicinal - the >same flavoring is there now to a lesser degree. ... >so I was leaning toward the wild yeast theory. >I'm not sure if the beer I've created is a close interpretation. >Would anyone else describe the Duvel >and Franziskaner beers as having a phenolic flavor/taste? >Are certain yeast strains expected to produce phenolic flavors? >Does a high(er) percentage of wheat malt contribute to phenolic flavoring in >a beer? There are several compounds you might call medicinal, but if it's comparable to the Franziskaner you are most likely tasting spicy-clovey 4-vinyl-guauicol (4VG). Another likely source are chlorophenolic compounds which are very medicinal and are present in some water supplies at nasty tasting concentrations. Malt, wheat and many grains contain a very simple phenolic compound called ferulic acid. One paper from Guinness shows that mash temperatures around 43C/109F releases more of the ferulic acid into the mash. Wheat generally has much higher ferulic levels than does barley. The ferulic itself is not particularly flavorful. In the boil a small percentage of ferulic is converted into the much more flavor active 4VG, maybe enough to taste in some cases. Weizen yeasts and according to another study most wild yeasts are very effective at converting ferulic to 4VG and will give a potent clovey-spicy flavor. I wish that Wyeast and others would label which yeasts are 4VG producers. Perhaps compiling this info would be a good HBD project ? Some books describe 4VG as smoky or medicinal tho' I personally don't get 'smoky at beer concentrations. I would prefer to call this flavor spicy/clovey, since the flavor term 'phenolic' often means astringent and/or coarsely bitter (flavors caused by larger often polymeric and oxidized phenolic compounds), like black tea. In my experience Kolsch should not have a 4VG flavor. Kunze suggests a Kolsch malt bill of 95%pale malt and 5% Cara-Hell -OR 85% pale and 15% Vienna. Tho later comments suggest up to 20% wheat malt. He describes the beer as tart, bitter and pale, OG of 11-11.6P(1.044-1.046), 7-11EBC, and 16-35IBU, and openly refers to cool fermenting and lagering this top-fermented beer. fwiw, -S Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 5 Jul 2000 21:04:14 +1000 From: "Phil & Jill Yates" <yates at acenet.com.au> Subject: Let's Hop on Regan Hop on Regan and beat him about the ears. How dare he make folly of the AQIS. Sorry, but I have to lend support to Graham Sanders in his defence of Regan. More importantly, I'd like to state that Regan's post in no way called for the vicious and outrageous verbal attack unleashed upon him by the righteous Mr Robey. Firstly a few facts : Regan runs (he doesn't own) a serious homebrew shop. He abides by the law. He is an intelligent person whose talents are largely wasted looking after the likes of homebrewers - but he excels. He comments that he knows of people who have imported small quantities of hops. And Mr Darren Robey sticks a gun down his throat!!! Shame on you Mr Robey, not for your concerns about Australian agriculture, but for your misguided criticism of Regan. Perhaps though, before responding to me, you might like to answer some of Mr Sanders' queries on the importation of hop flowers into this country by the large breweries. You might like to answer lots of things. But I suspect you can't. No more than I can. Bureaucracy in this country has me so appalled that I would have a long time ago moved to America. But alas. I was to learn that Eric Fouch lived over there. Phil. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 5 Jul 2000 08:19:43 -0500 From: David Sweeney <David at studentlife.tamu.edu> Subject: Aussies!?! David wrote: Aussies do carry on, don't they? Pat wrote: Yeah! You'd think they'd learn the delicate self-control displayed by Aggies when speaking of Longhorns. Touche! David Sweeney Texas A&M University david at studentlife.tamu.edu Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 05 Jul 2000 09:42:11 -0400 From: Chuck Mryglot <cmryglot at cisco.com> Subject: Bavarian Helles I've just read Bavarian Helles and have a question or 2 for discussion....maybe the author participates in this forum and can jump in. Looking at the hopping schedule it advises to add flavor hops at shutdown and to add aroma hops 10 - 15 minutes after shutdown. Shutdown was not defined, but I assume it means that this is the point in time that the heat is turned off. I have never read advice such as this before. For me, 10 - 15 minutes after shutdown is during the chilling phase and the wort is maybe 150 degrees F at this point. Is it not a bad idea to add hops to unfermented wort at such a low temperature for fear of contamination? The book credits brewers from Spaten with a technical review. Is this a new technique? Prosit ChuckM Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 05 Jul 2000 06:56:03 -0700 (MST) From: Jim Liddil <jliddil at VMS.ARIZONA.EDU> Subject: also sprach zarathustra > ------------------------------ > > Date: Tue, 4 Jul 2000 16:38:09 +0930 > From: LyndonZimmermann <lyndonz at senet.com.au> > Subject: Contamination by Lambics > > Greetings, > > I'm interested in making a Lambic and have been warned about the possibility > of contamination into other brews of the yeast. I make beer, wine and mead, > and venturing into yoghurt and cheese. How serious is this issue? What > steps should I take to prevent cross contamination and sanitise brewgear > used? Can the infection spread through bottle trub? > > Lyndon Z The last line could lead me into a nice discussion of spreading diseases but I'll show self restraint. Again this whole things is a momily (TM schmidling inc.) One simply needs to clean things well and then sanitize. You can not sanitize a unclean surface, but you can autoclave feces. Sterile but not clean. So make sure you clean everything well and then sanitize well. I'd be more worried about the amount of microorganisms from cheese and yogurt taking over the whole house. This is only as serious an issue as you want it to be. How concerned are you about off flavors? also be aware that the pathogenic microorganisms in your kitchen are of a much higher level than anywhere else. See the palmer/liddil article on celaning and sanitization at the brewery. also check the lambic digest archives for further discussion. I can't wait for steve Alexander to jump on the wheat/phenolic issue. :-) Jim Liddil North Haven, CT USA Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 05 Jul 2000 10:01:47 -0400 From: Marc Sedam <marc_sedam at unc.edu> Subject: pH Lynne brought out a good point about mash pH and the delicate nature of the probes in this environment. I used to have (well still have a nonfunctioning version of) a Piccolo Plus pH meter. Thing of beauty. Accuracy to 0.02 units...small, useful, had ATC. I got to use the thing *about* 5 times before the probe fried. I didn't use the probe out towards boiling, but I did frequently measure the pH in the alpha amylase range (162F). Had I known that the probe was frail at higher temps (not easily determined from the product lit) I would have only used it to get the pH at the beta-rest (142-ish) and been done. Replacing the probe seems like a luxury right now. On to Dave Burley's comment about measuring pH. I hadn't considered not sticking the probe in the mash before. I'm not dead, but it doesn't mean that he's not correct. But I would say that he's a bit off as far as how to measure the pH. If you have an ATC meter, I say take the sample, stick the probe in there, and go. No need to cool the thing down...wastes valuable time and there's no advantage to having an ATC meter if you cool the sample below, say, 140F (so I'm consistent). pH of enzyme systems are supposed to be the pH at the time of conversion. So when it says the mash should be pH 5.2 -5.3, it means exactly that. Not the cooled sample should be in that range, but the MASH should be in that range. It's not implicit. I spent a few moons using alpha and beta amylase in a commercial setting. We *always* adjusted the pH of the system at the reaction temperature and not at room temps. Since the beta-amylase was derived from barley (a word quite close to "Burley" by the by) and we were converting starch, it's a relevant comparison. Now, when you measure standards or calibrate the pH meter it should be at STP If you don't have an appropriate probe then you'll have to whip out the CRC Handbook or hit the web to determine the pH/temperature conversion factor. Cheerios! Marc Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 05 Jul 2000 09:45:19 -0500 From: Jim Layton <a0456830 at rtxmail1.rsc.raytheon.com> Subject: More on souring wits Graham Sanders wrote: >I can understand using lactobacillus in my wort, but I,m reluctant >as i will not have any control over the final acidicity. There are a couple of ways to beat that problem. First, pasteurization could be used to kill off the bacteria in the finished beer, followed by force carbonation or adding fresh yeast for bottle carbonation. This, I understand, is how one commercial wit brewer does it. I've never tried it myself. Second (this one I have used with good results), add the bacteria culture at packaging time. Let the beer carbonate and age at room temperature. Sample it periodically. When you think the acidity is perfect, store the bottles or keg in the fridge. Cold temperature will, for all practical purposes, halt further activity by L. delbrukii. My skepticism regarding sour mashing comes not from my brewing experience but from fishing. One way to attract catfish and concentrate them in your favorite fishing hole is to throw a gallon or so of soured grain into the water. This soured grain is prepared by adding water to grain (wheat, corn, sorghum, whatever), of course, then letting nature take her course for a few days. The resulting product has an absolutely revolting odor but the catfish go for it. Pitch the mess in and rinse the bucket, you don't want it stinking up the place all day! Then bait your hook and wait for the action to begin. If you picked a good spot, you'll be hauling a mess of catfish home within the hour. A pure culture of L. delbrukii in a malt based starter smells tart but clean. A bucket of soured grain is a far, far different experience. Give the sour mashing a try, Graham, and be sure to report back how it turns out. I may try it if it works for you. If not, I'll stick with what has worked for me in the past. Jim Layton Howe, TX Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 05 Jul 2000 10:53:26 -0400 From: Spencer W Thomas <spencer at engin.umich.edu> Subject: Re: Siphoning easily & safely >>>>> "Keith" == Keith Christian <kchris1 at lausd.k12.ca.us> writes: Keith> 2. Place receiving end of the cane in carboy with the Keith> carboy cap. It has 2 wholes. The racking cane is going Keith> through one whole and simply hook up some 3/8 tubing on the Keith> other. Suck on the tube and you get a siphon started Keith> without ever blowing into the vessel holding the beer. Stupid brewer trick -- DO NOT TRY THIS -- I purged my receiving vessel (carboy or keg, I forget which) with CO2, then decided to start the siphon by sucking on it, as Keith describes. A lung full of CO2 is not a pleasant sensation! =Spencer Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 05 Jul 2000 11:17:25 -0400 From: "Pannicke, Glen A." <glen_pannicke at merck.com> Subject: Contamination by Lambics Lyndon Zimmermann has a common concern regarding contamination by Lambics: >I'm interested in making a Lambic and have been warned about the possibility >of contamination into other brews of the yeast. I make beer, wine and mead, >and venturing into yoghurt and cheese. How serious is this issue? What >steps should I take to prevent cross contamination and sanitise brewgear >used? Can the infection spread through bottle trub? The short of it is: clean everything well and sanitize. Many people fear that brewing lambics will contaminate their "house flora". My feelings are that if your brewing so greatly effects your house flora, or vice versa, you need to review your brewing and sanitation processes. I've only brewed one lambic so far. In fact, this year-old brew is *STILL* fermenting. But over the course of the past year I can't say it has caused a single infection in another brew. I have had it in the same room with my other brews before moving it to an out of the way spot and I've also lifted the lid on it a few times (I know I shouldn't, but I'm too curious!) Based on my experience with similar concerns found in various manufacturing industries, it is my belief that cross-contamination is a result of poor cleaning and sanitation of items which may be interchanged between brews rather than through the bubbler and into the air. Poorly cleaned fermentation locks, rubber stoppers, hoses, racking canes and even cleaning and test equipment are all more likely sources of infection. Items such as fermenters and bottles should be cold-soaked in tap water over night to loosen organic deposits and then scrubbed with a strong detergent (such as TSP or dishwasher detergent) so that they are visibly clean. Spigots should be disassembled and thoroughly scrubbed because these can be good hiding spots for lambic bugs. Jet washers are great for scrubbing those bottles. This all should then be followed by a second soaking in a strong sanitizer for a few hours. I prefer chlorine bleach at a rate of 1 oz/gallon overnight. Not much can live through that! Even with all this cleaning and sanitizing going on, I still keep equipment dedicated to lambics. This is mainly because of the long fermentation periods, but I still worry about a slip up in cleaning. It's better to be safe than sorry. Trub? You shouldn't have any trub in the bottom of your finished bottles, but you should have a fine layer of yeast there if you bottle conditioned. That will certainly cross-contaminate if not properly washed and sanitized. As for the cheese and yoghurt process, I have no clue. But if they involve leaving the cultures open to the air, I would keep the lambic in another room and fill the fermentation lock with cheap vodka or 70% ethanol anyway. You probably don't use the same equipment anyway. A few links to read up on: http://www.stanford.edu/~jeremybb/lambic/sanitation.html http://www.stanford.edu/~jeremybb/lambic/oldfaq.txt http://hbd.org/brewery/library/LmbicJL0696.html#Sanit Carpe cerevisiae! Glen Pannicke http://www.pannicke.net "He was a wise man who invented beer" - Plato Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 5 Jul 2000 11:58:28 -0400 From: "Strom C. Thacker" <sthacker at bu.edu> Subject: New Wyeast 1332 NW ale Has anyone out there tried Wyeast Northwest Ale yeast (#1332)? I think it's relatively new -- there doesn't seem to be anything in the archives on it. The description for it is: 1332 Northwest Ale yeast One of the classic ale strains from the Northwest U.S. Breweries. Produces a malty and mildly fruity ale with good depth and complexity. Flocculation - high; apparent attenuation 67-71%. (65-75o F) Anyone know its origin? Is it the same as NCYC 1332? I'm preparing to brew an American style amber ale, and am deciding between this strain and the American Ale II (#1272) strain. Any thoughts or recommendations? Thanks, Strom Newton, MA Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 5 Jul 2000 15:56:16 -0500 From: "Brian Lundeen" <blundeen at rrc.mb.ca> Subject: re: water analysis Braam Greyling ventured forth from his new town into the wilds of the Australian Taunting Digest (sorry, Pat, I meant HBD), and spake: > Hi, > > Since I have moved to a new town, I need some help in analising > our water profile. > (chemistry details and references to Mrs Frans deleted) > I don't know if this will answer all your questions, but I found Ken Schwartz's site at http://home.elp.rr.com/brewbeer/ to be very useful in helping me understand water concepts. His BreWater program is my personal choice for calculating additions to my water because of its formulation wizard. Brian Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 05 Jul 2000 18:39:22 +0000 From: Anthony and Mary Ann Tantillo <amtantillo at earthlink.net> Subject: Re: Stroh's Signature In Homebrew Digest #3365 (June 30, 2000), Bob Hall <nap_aca_bh at nwoca.org> asks: >Can anyone out there give a >little background on Signature, history, clone, etc. Jeff Renner wrote: > "AS I recall, it was a nice beer but still too tame for my tastes. > Maltier and richer than a standard American lager, > with nice flavoring hops, but nothing to write home about..." >From what I remember about Peter's talk, Signature still used corn as an adjunct. The real surprise was that replacing part of the six row barley with two row did not change the taste according to Stroh's tastetesters. > I can't remember exactly how Peter used the simile of "kissing your > sister" that Fred related, but I think it may have been more > regarding light beers than beers other than Stroh's. Someone else > who was there may remember better. My recollection too is that the "kissing your sister" quote referred to light beers.He also made the quote "..we turn water into beer not beer into water.."Does anyone remember exactly what context this quote was made? It had something to do with the light beer debate, I believe. >He certainly was an entertaining speaker, especially for those of > us interested in the history of beer. Agreed. Someone should write a book similar to "Glory of Their Times", but instead of old baseball players, old regional brewers would recount their experiences. Tony Tantillo amtantillo at earthlink.net Jeff Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 5 Jul 2000 21:48:50 -0400 From: Dan Listermann <72723.1707 at compuserve.com> Subject: Rimmers I need some info from you rimmers ( not Arnold J.). What watt per sq inch ratio do you use? What is your minimum flow rate and how often does the element need to be cleaned? Anyother advice regarding the use of electrical heating elements would be appreciated. Dan Listermann 72723.1707 at compuserve.com dan at listermann.com Return to table of contents
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