HOMEBREW Digest #403 Fri 20 April 1990

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		Rob Gardner, Digest Coordinator

  Re: Homebrew Digest #402 (April 19, 1990)  (Kenneth R. van Wyk)
  Blowing it Off (Martin A. Lodahl)
  Boy Scout lessons (HOLTSFOR)
  Re, more-or-less: Too-Sweet Steam (Clay Phipps)
  2nd Annual Dallas-Denver Beer Run Trip Report (Doug Roberts)
  re: 2nd Annual Dallas-Denver Beer Run Trip Report (Dick Dunn)
  fruit color in melomel (Dick Dunn)
  Ceramic Top Bottles (Enders)
  Beer judge training report (Ted Manahan)
  stainless steel pot wanted (Chris Steinbroner)
  This is disturbing (Doug Roberts)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Thu, 19 Apr 90 08:55:56 EDT From: Kenneth R. van Wyk <krvw at cert.sei.cmu.edu> Subject: Re: Homebrew Digest #402 (April 19, 1990) hplabs!hp-lsd.cos.hp.com!ihlpl!korz (Algis R Korzonas) writes: >> ... >> I recommend you use the largest >> diameter tubing you can figure out a way to attach to the top >> of the carboy. I have heard of numerous brewers using a >> tubing close to 2" in diameter, shoved directly into the top >> of the carboy. My local supplier (Country Wines, Pittsburgh, PA, (412) 366-0151) sells 1" _ID_ clear tubing which has an OD that fits perfectly (and snugly) into my 5 gallon carboy. I use about a 4' piece of the tubing (which is something in the order of $1.25/ft) and plug one end into the carboy and the other into a 5 gallon bucket full of water. During primary fermentation (several successful batches with this method), foam/scum/etc. generally gets blown out the tube. I have a tough time imagining anything in my (strained) wort that could clog the blow-by. After primary, BTW, I rack the beer into another carboy and put a bubbler on it, so that my beer isn't sitting on top of all the protein/yeast sludge. Whether or not this step is necessary, or worth the added air exposure to the wort, I'm not certain. I saw, however, in a recent Zymurgy which listed some statistics on award-winning homebrews, that some 68% (or so) of the winning beers used a two-stage fermentation. Please, I'm not arguing which is better, only pointing out what I do. (Read: flames to /dev/null, please.) Final (whew) note. As a relative novice in homebrew, I'd like to thank the contributors (and owners!) of this list. I've found it to be an extremely valuable information source (until this posting, anyway... :-). Disclaimer: I have not affiliation with Country Wines other than being a satisfied customer. Cheers, Ken van Wyk Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 18 Apr 90 9:35:37 PST From: Martin A. Lodahl <hplabs!pbmoss!mal> Subject: Blowing it Off In HOMEBREW Digest #401, Russ Gelinas is considering going to closed fermentation, and has a few questions: " ... I'd like to try a closed ferment (is this the same as the blow-off?)." That depends on the size of the batch, relative to the size of the carboy. If you're brewing 5-gallon batches in a 7-gallon carboy, it's a rare recipe that will produce enough foam to fill the remaining volume. "Papazian says to pitch the yeast in the carbuoy, and then seal it with a water seal, but then where does the blow-off take place?" In effect, the blowoff tube is a kind of water seal. While one end is attached to the carboy, the other is under water in a suitable receptacle (large jar, jug, pail, etc.). How large this is depends on how much of the wort you expect to waste in this fashion. I use a gallon jug, but a couple of times it hasn't been enough. "If you ... put a blow-off tube instead, when *do* you seal it?" I usually exchange the blowoff tube for the bubbler when the head begins to fall. That can be as soon as two days after the start of fermentation, or as late as a week, depending on weather & recipe. I've heard tales of infection beginning in the blowoff bucket and traveling up through the tube to spoil the beer, so I don't like to leave the tube in place longer than necessary. I should add at this point that though I'm convinced of the benefits of closed fermentation, I'm not convinced that a blowoff tube is the best answer. Sometime in the future I plan to try a 7-gallon carboy. Keep brewing! = Martin A. Lodahl Pac*Bell Minicomputer Operations Support Staff = = pacbell!pbmoss!mal -or- mal at pbmoss.Pacbell.COM 916.972.4821 = = If it's good for ancient Druids, runnin' nekkid through the wuids, = = Drinkin' strange fermented fluids, it's good enough for me! 8-) = Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 19 Apr 90 08:12 EST From: <HOLTSFOR%MSUKBS.BITNET at CORNELLC.cit.cornell.edu> Subject: Boy Scout lessons Greetings Homebrewers -- When I was scraping petrifed wort from my stovetop last weekend I noticed one patch that wiped clean with minimal effort. I thought I remembered wiping that spot after the first boil-over with a soapy sponge. Last night before beginning to mash I wiped down the whole stovetop with a wet sponge that I had squeezed a couple drops of dishwashing soap onto. I was very pleased to find, five hours later, that cleaning the stovetop was *MUCH* easier than usual. It occurs to me that I should have learned this lesson many years ago. When I was a Boy Scout we soaped the outside of our pots before cooking with them. The campfire always turned the pots black with soot, but if they had been soaped the soot would come off easily. Woe to the Tenderfoot who forgot to soap the pots and had to spend the evening applying elbow-grease and SOS to those blackened hunks of aluminum. Adios, Tim Holtsford Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 16 Apr 90 21:17:46 -0700 From: hplabs!garth!phipps (Clay Phipps) Subject: Re, more-or-less: Too-Sweet Steam References: <HOMEBREW Digest #398, 04/13/90> "JEFF CASEY / (617)253-0885" <CASEY at NERUS.PFC.MIT.EDU> wrote: >Bill Pemberton says: >>It seems (to me at least) that most of the brews I have made have been a >>touch too sweet for my liking. .... I have used several different yeasts... > >One real problem I found is that crystal malt smells and tastes so good >(while brewing) that it is a real test of your self control and >determination to add in only the required amount and no more. With neoprohibitionists having the potential for seriously negative impacts on the enjoyment of brewing, I refuse to exercise "self control" when deciding how much crystal malt to add to my brews. >One of my best red bitters had none of my "trademark" sweetness, >although I'd used the recipe before -- when I checked my notes, >I had run out of crystal, and had only been able to add in what was >necessary, not tip in a little more "for grins". Try using 2 wrongs to make a right: add more hops to balance your crystal "for grins" malt. 2 lbs. of 40L crystal is in my current batch. My amberish brews without crystal malt (when I've already started the brew-pot and I realize I'm out of the stuff) seem awfully watery nowadays, but you should, of course, brew to *your* taste, not mine. >if you are an extract brewer, stick to the pale extracts >and modify them with your own specialty grains for darker brews. >The amber and dark extracts often have other sugars or caramel added [...] I agree with the recommendation to use light extracts as a base. I just can't see making the effort to finesse amounts of the dark grains in a brew, when I don't know the composition of the dark grains in the extract. Yes, I'm certain that there are unknowns in the light extracts, but I assume that there must be far fewer unknowns in them. >Yeasts: if you are using an unattenuative yeast, there will be more >unfermentables left over, and the brew will be sweeter. "William F. Pemberton" <wfp5p at euclid.acc.virginia.edu> wrote more: > >Several people have written me in regard to my problem with too sweet beer. >I didn't post any recipes, but one reason is that >I have used several different ones, but here is a typical example: > 0.5 lb. Crystal Malt > 1 can Unhoped Amber Extract > 1 can Unhoped Light Extract > 1.5 oz Northern Brewer's Hops (for boil) > 0.25 oz Cascade Hops (for finish) > Whitbread Ale Yeast >[...] it was just too sweet for my likings. >My current mutation of the above recipe uses a lager yeast >instead of an ale yeast (making a steam beer). The recipe for Anchor Steam provided by a now-defunct homebrew store used 2 oz. of Northern (alpha: ~10%?) for boiling. If your hops had suffered in storage, you might have gotten the effect of one oz. or less: only half of the hops bitterness called for in the recipe (25% low relative to recipe, compounded by ~40% loss in storage (see someone else's posting)). I could imagine that a beer too sweet for your tastes resulted. I once put 3 oz. or so of Chinook (alpha: 13%) in a recipe by mistake. The result was quite hoppy and quite drinkable, but not for everybody. >I had hoped that the yeast was the culprit and >the use of a lager yeast would do the trick. Your history with yeasts is backwards from mine. Switching from lager yeast to ale yeast in the heat of summer definitely changed the taste of my Steam-alike recipe, but it wasn't in sweetness. I haven't experimented in any serious way with yeasts, but attenuation (See Casey, above) might be a factor. >The two brands of extract that I use are John Bull and Munton & Fison. Try using 2 cans of the light extract, and forget the "amber" stuff. >I've tried several variations off of this, and all have worked well, >but still too sweet (for me). Several people on the net (thanks to all) >suggested cutting back on the Crystal Malt. >I think I will try a version with that eliminated. No! Anything but that! Crystal-maltiness is next to godliness. :-) I suppose it could be regarded as use of the scientific method, though. So now you have plenty of excuses to brew: applying the scientific method to canned mystery extracts, hop freshness, yeast attenuation, and crystal malts (don't forget to try a complete assortment of Lovibond ratings :-). Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 19 Apr 90 08:49:16 MDT From: roberts%studguppy at LANL.GOV (Doug Roberts) Subject: 2nd Annual Dallas-Denver Beer Run Trip Report [Beer Run Trip Report] Now these guys _like_ beer! - --Doug Return to table of contents
Date: 19 Apr 90 08:42:31 MST (Thu) From: hplabs!hplms2!gatech!ico.isc.com!raven!rcd (Dick Dunn) Subject: re: 2nd Annual Dallas-Denver Beer Run Trip Report jmellby at ngstl1.csc.ti.com (John Mellby) writes, among much else... >...The two stores complemented each other well and we cleaned them both out of > several brands... And folks wonder why Coloradans don't like Texans!!! They come up here to clean us out of beer to take back home. You can't hit much harder than that...running folks out of beer. Fortunately they didn't find the stores with the best selection, and **WE'RE NOT TELLING WHERE THEY ARE**. (Enjoy, fellas.) Somebody needs to work on Texas legislators to get their laws loosened up, if it's really that hard to get good beer. I mean, if I lived in Texas instead of here, I'd *need* a good drink! Oh, it's Wynkoop (say wine-coop), not Wyncoop. - --- Dick Dunn {ncar;ico;stcvax}!raven!rcd (303)494-0965 or rcd at raven.uucp Return to table of contents
Date: 19 Apr 90 08:48:50 MST (Thu) From: hplabs!hplms2!gatech!ico.isc.com!raven!rcd (Dick Dunn) Subject: fruit color in melomel Fruits often don't leave much of their color by the time a melomel is all done fermenting out and clarifying. I wouldn't worry too much...why try to add color? People unfamiliar with melomel won't know what to expect; those who are familiar with it will just wonder where the color came from. Here are a few of my observations on what happens with fruit colors... raspberry black ones leave you with a nice deep red. Red leave you with a lighter red, but still a lot of color boysenberry like black raspberry blueberry only a little color, like a faint lavender pomegranate almost no color! This one started out deep red, as you'd expect, but just kept getting lighter. By the time it was bottled, it was a pale yellow, lighter than an apricot melomel we'd made strawberry don't know about melomel, but in wine it fades out almost completely. A thought in passing...has anyone tried plums in mead? - --- Dick Dunn {ncar;ico;stcvax}!raven!rcd (303)494-0965 or rcd at raven.uucp Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 19 Apr 90 15:39:57 -0500 From: Enders <enders at plains.NoDak.edu> Subject: Ceramic Top Bottles Does anyone know of a good source for Grolsch type ceramic top bottles, esp. in 1 liter or larger sizes. I have one case of 1 liter bottles (9 bottles to the case) and would like to obtain more, but the beer that came in them doesn't seem to be available locally anymore, and it wasn't very good (Altenmunster (sp?), it had a copper taste to it). 9 bottles/case beats 24 any day, and you don't have to wrestle with crown caps either. Todd Enders arpa: enders at plains.nodak.edu Computer Center uucp: ...!uunet!plains!enders Minot State University bitnet: enders at plains Minot, ND 58701 Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 19 Apr 90 15:23:08 mdt From: Ted Manahan <hplabs!hpldola!tedm> Subject: Beer judge training report Full-Name: Ted Manahan I attended a beer judge training class in Boulder CO. last night (Wed. Apr. 18). There may be general interest in the program, so I am posting a "trip report". This was a three hour class given by the American Homebrewers Association. Cost was $5 at the door, $3.50 in advance. The purpose of the seminar was to train judges for the national homebrew competition, which starts next week. About 70 people attended. The agenda was: Opening Remarks Dave Welker, Judge Director National Homebrew Competition Beer Judge Certification Program Jim Homer, Co-Director Beer Judge Certification Program Judge Ethics and Responsibilities Dave Welker Flavor Evaluation and Technique Charlie Papazian, President American Homebrewers Association Dave Welker talked about the need for qualified judges for the national competition. People want constructive feedback on their beers, and it is the responsibility of the judges to give them that feedback. Jim Homer gave a pitch for the Beer Judge Certification Program. I plan to take the certification test as soon as I can. The next Colorado based test will be May 22. (I will be out of town that day; bad luck!) Charlie Papazian opened his talk with a description of the best way to evaluate all beer components. This includes look, smell, and taste, as well as mouth feel and even the sound when opening the bottle. There was a handout with a "flavor wheel" that lists beer flavors, flavor terminology, and some text from the Zymurgy 1987 special trouble shooting issue. After the above, we got to taste some beer! We started out with some bad beers. Year old Leinenkugles (sp) light, to illustrate how old beer tastes. I had a hard time saying it was any worse than light beer usually is. There were three "doctored" beers to illustrate DMS, chlora-phenolic (sp), and phenolic/medicinal smells. I had a hard time identifying the DMS smell, but the others almost took my nose off! We then tasted some commercial beers. Old "Hope Lager", "Paulaner Hefe-Weizen" (sp), and "Red Hook ESB". For me the highlight of the evening came when we got to taste some "Toad Spit Stout". Charlie said this was the last from his original batch of Toad Spit, brewed 13 years ago! It was oxidized and smelled somewhat like sherry, but had a very complex flavor profile. Not bad; now I have had a taste of history! We then did a trial judging of three homebrews: an Octoberfest, a Bock beer, and a spice beer. I consistently rated the brews higher than the more experienced judges. The spice beer really threw me, as I had never tasted anything like it before. We also tasted a still mead that was about 6 years old. This was the first time I had tasted a mead - it was really strong (flavor and alcohol). I can see how a person could grow to like it. If anyone else who was at the seminar wants to post additions or corrections to this report, please go ahead! Ted Manahan tedm at hpldola.hp.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 19 Apr 90 17:09:10 PDT From: hesh at lll-crg.llnl.gov (Chris Steinbroner) Subject: stainless steel pot wanted if anybody can point me to a source of inexpensive SS pots i'd appreciate it. if you have a used SS pot you want to sell me, drop me a note. thanks, - -- hesh p.s. looking for 24 qt. or so Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 19 Apr 90 21:30:43 MDT From: roberts%studguppy at LANL.GOV (Doug Roberts) Subject: This is disturbing I dry hopped (in the secondary) two of my last three batches of all-grain beers, and they both remained active and very cloudy for three weeks. They were still cloudy at kegging time. This is puzzling, because I have frequently hopped in the primary, with excellent results. My last batch, in fact, was hopped in the primary and it was crystal clear after just two weeks. I used a different yeast in the cloudy batches, Munton & Fisson, but I've used it often enough in the past with no ill effects. The beer doesn't taste bad, so I don't think it's contaminated, but I have never had such cloudy batches. Has anyone else experienced cloudiness as a result of dry hopping in the secondary? I used 1/2 oz. Saaz pellets for finishing in each case. - --Doug ================================================================ Douglas Roberts | Los Alamos National Laboratory |I can resist anything Box 1663, MS F-609 | except temptation. Los Alamos, New Mexico 87545 | ... (505)667-4569 |Oscar Wilde dzzr at lanl.gov | ================================================================ Return to table of contents
End of HOMEBREW Digest #403, 04/20/90 ************************************* -------
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