HOMEBREW Digest #4376 Fri 17 October 2003

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  Skittles (Alexandre Enkerli)
  RE: Aspartame ("James Fitzell")
  sulfites/vitamin c (Dane Mosher)
  Aspartame safety (Fred Johnson)
  lambic photo gallery? ("John Misrahi")
  re: Formaldahyde, Aspertame, heaadaches? (Ben Hanson)
  RE: The Chocolate Stout (Mike Anderson)
  Re: Sealing kegs for fermenting (hollen)
  Got Belgians? (Bill Rogers)
  re: Cold Pitching of Yeast (R.A.)" <rbarrett@ford.com>
  "mashring" design for mashtun ("Mike Eyre")
  Bottling yeast for lambic (susan woodall)
  Build a plate exchanger (Dean)
  Formaldehyde in brewing and malting ("George de Piro")
  Attention: Brewers In Ontario (Tim & Cindy Howe)
  Cocoa Additions to Beer ("Steven P. Bellner")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 00:12:21 -0400 From: Alexandre Enkerli <aenkerli at indiana.edu> Subject: Skittles Anyone trying these? http://crazyengineer.net/projects/skittle.php Mirror here: http://anthony.is.dreaming.org/skittle-brau.htm Alex, in Montreal [555.1km, 62.8] Apparent Rennerian Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 14:53:00 +1000 From: "James Fitzell" <JFitzell at tecbuild.com.au> Subject: RE: Aspartame Hi, I know everyone's capable of using google, however I thought I'd add this link for reference. http://www.holisticmed.com/aspartame/ Aspartame has even been "accused" of causing Gulf War Syndrome since the big drink manufacturers gave all the soldiers canned diet soft drinks that were stored at above average temperatures prior to drinking. Cheers, James Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 00:46:30 -0700 (PDT) From: Dane Mosher <dane_mosher at yahoo.com> Subject: sulfites/vitamin c Dave Burley writes: >Papain is used to reduce cold haze in beer and isn't a stabilizer in the biological sense. True. I should have said it promotes colloid stability. I also misspoke previously when I said breweries used sulfites as a preservative. They actually are used as an antioxidant. The concentrations aren't high enough for a preservative effect. >I wonder about your assertion that Bud and others use sulfites in beer. Do you have a reference? I believe sulfites in beer is illegal in Britain and has been for decades. Can't imagine the US didn't follow suit. I left my Siebel texts with my former employer, so I'll contact some friends there to hunt down the reference. The BATF has a blanket rule for all alcoholic beverages for labeling sulfites, which I interpret as meaning it is legally used in beer and spirits in addition to wine in the U.S. Anything less than 10ppm does not need to be labeled. http://www.atf.gov/pub/alctob_pub/at_news/apr_2002/page2.htm >There is, of course, no evidence that sulfites cause headaches. You're right. My mistake. I bought into the popular myth. People who are sensitive to sulfites tend to have allergic reactions (hives, anaphylactic shock, difficulty breathing). >Ascorbic acid used to prevent oxidation in a beer that is under CO2 pressure? Oxygen makes it into every bottle, can, and keg, no matter how good the packaging line is. Regardless of CO2 presence, oxidation propagates as a chain reaction via free radicals, and doesn't stop until an antioxidant quenches it. The damage speeds up with increasing temperature. I don't which breweries are using ascorbic acid, but personally this is the one additive I have no problem with. I've tried it myself in my homebrew at bottling. Whether it helped or not, I don't know, but it made me feel good. Who needs orange juice when you can have beer? It's unnecessary for homebrewers of course. Beer naturally contains many antioxidants which are sufficient to protect it when handled carefully, stored properly, and consumed in a reasonable amount of time. Dane Mosher Fort Worth, TX Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 07:18:11 -0400 From: Fred Johnson <FLJohnson at portbridge.com> Subject: Aspartame safety Steven recently posted to the HBD regarding the approval of aspartame. He stated that the company seeking approval said, "We spent X-Million dollars proving that aspertame is safe for human consumption." Steven said "No mention was made of how much money they spent trying to find any negative effects from it." It sounds like Steven is skeptical that the company did an adequate job looking for negative effects. The studies to prove safety of something ARE the studies to show the negative effects. That is what a safety studies are designed to do. A safety study is a study in which one tallies the negative effects associated with consuming the product. The company has undoubtedly spent X million dollars accumulating the adverse events associated with the product. The FDA is not staffed by fools. Fred L Johnson Apex, North Carolina, USA Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 08:14:21 -0400 From: "John Misrahi" <lmoukhin at sprint.ca> Subject: lambic photo gallery? Hi to all you lambic wannabe brewers out there, I was looking at my fermenting p-lambics the other day (there are 3 different batches). Anyways, two of them have an identical looking pellicle..One looks diferent. Hard to explain, but I am gonna take some photos. I was wondering if anyone is interested in starting a little photo gallery to put pictures of things like this, to help uncertain people like me determine if there is a problem. One has a thin 'cracked glass' layer (underneath the 'normal' layer of bubbles) that looks a lot like the first 'horrible infection' photo on Alan McKay's Bodensatz site.. http://www.bodensatz.com/gallery/view_photo.php?set_albumName=FermentationFo tos&id=strange_growth any thoughts? John Misrahi Montreal, Canada Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 08:50:14 -0400 From: Ben Hanson <bhanson at rica.net> Subject: re: Formaldahyde, Aspertame, heaadaches? Coincidentally enough, I was just researching food additives yesterday for a company newsletter article, and can answer a couple of the formaldehyde questions. Fermentation always produces some VERY small quantity of methanol along with ethanol. Did I say very small? Now, methanol cannot be eliminated by the body very well. It first is broken down into component products which the kidneys then get rid of. One of those byproducts that would be disturbing is Formaldehyde. Presumably, that small amount of methanol could react in a bottle under the right circumstances (maybe non-iced, trunk stored beer?) and produce very tiny but measurable amounts of formaldehyde. The good news is that the bodily production doesn't really ever happen because the 'antidote' to methanol is ethanol, which binds to that tiny amount of methanol in yet another reaction and is easily and quickly eliminated without bad byproducts being produced. The moral o this story, then, should be to drink FRESH beer that hasn't been sitting in your trunk for a long time. Sounds like common sense to drink fresh beer to me anyway. What should be much more disturbing to know is that fully 10% of the composition of aspartame is methanol, which amounts to around 24-30 ml per canned soda. The toxicity threshold for small children is set by the FDA at 56 ml, or roughly just 1.5 canned 'diet' sodas. It's not fully decomposed and processed, so this statistic isn't quite as easy to quantify as it looks like. The methanol is made 'active' from the warming of the aspartame above 86 deg. F. Note: Humans typically run around 98-99 deg F. Until 1996 the FDA didn't approve aspartame for anything other than 'cold' or 'dry' uses, but the lobby groups won out and now you can make nutrasweet JELLO that starts with heated water, thereby making almost all the methanol available to our bodies. In fact, aspartame was NEVER approved by the FDA after eight years of being annually reviewed, but the one guy in charge was wined and dined quite well, so on year nine, he overruled the committee's recommendation and rubber stamped it anyway. According to a report they released in '94 (FDA), fully 75% of all U.S. food reaction complaints involve aspartame. As a final irony, nutrasweet is essentially zero calories, since the body cannot process it, thus making it useful for 'diet' colas, but it is an Appetite Stimulant! I'm not going to qualify these statements with sources; you are all on the internet and you'll find it very easy to come up with them on your own - and probably find my numbers vary be a percent or ml from one or another. There are lots of studies. Last note: Regarding Dave Burley's post about other additives. Check out the relatively MASSIVE list the AHA provides for free, of additives breweries in the U.S. DO put in their beer despite the fact that it seems counterintuitive, that they DON'T have to put on their labeling. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 06:24:21 -0700 (PDT) From: Mike Anderson <miander2 at yahoo.com> Subject: RE: The Chocolate Stout "Parker Dutro" <pacman at edwardwadsworth.com> wrote... So I am wondering about experiences of anyone here that has brewed a stout using any form of chocolate. Recently, I brewed a Chocolate Porter using unsweetened cocoa powder. The information I found prior to brewing suggested that adding chocolate for the entire boil would impart a strong bitterness. So I added it during the last 5 minutes. At bottling time, the beer tasted great with only a hint of chocolate and not any unusually strong bitterness. I have also read that letting bottles age will mellow out any chocolate bitterness. On a related note, I brewed a clone of Rogue's Hazelnut Brown Nectar from a recipe in Zymurgy that calls for 0.75 oz of hazelnut flavoring. Upon searching for sources of this flavor, I found information suggesting that Rogue uses all natural Flavor-Mate brand flavoring in the secondary or at bottling. There are a variety of flavors including Hazelnut and Dutch Chocolate available in 1.25 oz bottles from wildroots.com (NAYY). This may be what Rogue also uses in their Chocolate Stout. I plan on trying it soon. Good luck with the stout! Mike A. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 10:29:10 -0400 (EDT) From: hollen at woodsprite.com Subject: Re: Sealing kegs for fermenting Mike said: > How do those of you who ferment in corny's get them to seal? I have > found that it is hit or miss whether I get any bubbling out my airlock > or whether the CO2 from fermentation just leaks out through the unseated > poppets or lid... I have fermented over 60 batches in kegs (all but my very first batch) and I never have this problem any more. The secret is to fix your leaking kegs. Replace the poppets and keep them lubricated with silicone. Replace the lid O-ring with one from Williams Brewing that is fatter and softer. Gently use a soft stick and a wooden mallet and tap out any dings in the lid seat of the keg. Always keep the lid O-ring lubricated with silicone. If, after all this, a particular keg will not hold a *small* amount of pressure, don't use it for a fermenter. dion - -- Dion Hollenbeck Email: hollen at woodsprite.com Home Page: http://www.woodsprite.com Brewing Page: http://hbd.org/hollen Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 08:06:18 -0700 (PDT) From: Bill Rogers <bill6beers at yahoo.com> Subject: Got Belgians? Franco-Belgian Challenge Cup French- and Belgian-style ales (Categories 18, 19, 20) Entries Due: October 28, 2003 Judging: November 1, 2003 Got Belgians? Sure you do! I am pleased to announce that the Madison Homebrewers and Tasters Guild will host the Franco-Belgian Challenge Cup homebrew competition on November 1st (10am; be there by 9am) at the Great Dane Pub and Brewery in Fitchburg, WI. Entry fees are $5 for the first entry, $3 for each additional entry. This is an open, sanctioned competition and will use the standard BJCP/AHA style guidelines judging only FRENCH- and BELGIAN-STYLE beers. Entries should be shipped for receipt by October 28th to: The Wine & Hop Shop 1931 Monroe St, Madison, WI 53711 (608) 257-0099 Two brown or green bottles with no markings are required. Any standard entry forms identifying the brewer and the appropriate entry category/subcategory are acceptable. Judges and Stewards will be needed and they should contact me to secure a position. Judges and Stewards can hand carry their entries if they pre-register with payment. Checks should be made out to "MHTG". More information will be available at the Madison Homebrewers and Tasters Guild web site http://mhtg.org. Bill Rogers Competition Organizer bill6beers at yahoo.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 11:34:02 -0400 From: "Barrett, Bob (R.A.)" <rbarrett at ford.com> Subject: re: Cold Pitching of Yeast A few days ago John Palmer asked about cold pitching of yeast: >I was participating in the Chat group at Homebrew Adventures on Sunday >night and one of the guys asked about the practice of pitching yeast >that had been stored cold to the (fermentation temp) wort, saying that >he had heard that it performed well or showed (an improvement)....... >Anyone else heard of this or have some references? Back on August 28, 2003 in HBD #4334 Dr. Clayton Cone posted a response to a series of questions by Mike Sapolski. One of Mike's questions was about cold pitching of yeast. Dr. Cone did not have any studies to back up his comments, but guessed it centered around the Trehalose content in the yeast cell. Dr. Cone wrote: "Trehalose seems to be an all around stress related factor. Almost immediately upon the cold storage of the yeast, trehalose begins to build up to help the yeast to adapt to its new environment. Upon pitching this stress factor assists the yeast to adapt to its new environment; warmer temperature and higher osmotic pressure. If the pitching yeast is allowed to warm up for any appreciable time before pitching the carbohydrate reserve, trehalose being one of them will be quickly used up as an energy source. The yeast would then take a longer time adapting to its new environment in the wort thus increasing the lag phase. Something similar happens when using Active Dry Yeast. The factory builds into each yeast cell an abundance of the stress factor; trehalose. Our recommendations is to rehydrate the yeast in warm water and pitch into the wort (or must) within 30 minutes, because the yeast will begin to metabolize its carbohydrate reserve including trehalose immediately upon reactivation and weaken the yeast if it is not in the presence of a new supply of energy. It will have also used up the stress factor that would have assisted it in adapting to the new osmotic environment. I am sure that there is more to the explanation than I have given." Sounds logical to me. We Make the Beer We Drink Bob Barrett Ann Arbor, MI (2.8, 103.6) Rennerian Saw Jeff last week at the AABG meeting. He looks marvelous!!!!! Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 12:07:34 -0400 From: "Mike Eyre" <meyre at sbcglobal.net> Subject: "mashring" design for mashtun Hello all! I just finished my new 3 tier gravity brewery and ran 'er on the maiden voyage witgh good success. Not perfect, but the learning curve was good, and I've got most of it's nuances worked out now I think. Just wanted to pass along that I went with a "mashring" setup for the mashtun in a converted keg, and that it worked very very well. If anyone is working on a converted keg setup and it lookin' for a way to do the mashing thing, I simply took a length of soft copper pipe and bent it into a circle approx 6"--8" in diameter, hooked the ends together with a T-fitting and ran the end out a coupling to the ball valve in the side of the keg. The circular part of the mashring had a lot of small holes drilled in it, and everything went smooth with a *very* clear wort after a couple of pints were recirculated through. I have been doing full boils in my one converted keg for a few brews before this utilizing a copper ChoreBoy on the end of a single tube, and that worked well enough.. But after this mashing experiment, I'll be working up a 10" or so diameter "boilring" for the boil kettle to separate out the hops, because it's so nice to work with. Anyone need any pics of the finished thing, just give me a shout. Mike Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 09:30:14 -0700 From: susan woodall <woodsusa at moscow.com> Subject: Bottling yeast for lambic I've had similar results with this method as Chad dave w. Chad Stevens asks "So how do y'all bottle your lambics? Kraeusen at bottling?" I've bottled two lambics. Each time I simply primed with sugar like a normal beer. No added yeast. Even though both beers spent over 18 months in the fermenter they carbonated eventually, although they did take a little longer than usual. John Landreman Colorado Springs, CO Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 10:33:27 -0700 From: Dean <dean at deanandadie.net> Subject: Build a plate exchanger Has anyone built a plate exchanger? I am looking for principles and plans (and something to do). - --Dean - Unscrambler of eggs - -- Take your time, take your chances [2045.2, 273.7] Apparent Rennerian - --------------------------------------------------------------------------- It matters not how strait the gate / How charged with punishment the scroll I am the master of my fate / I am the captain of my soul. -- Invictus -- -- William E Henley -- Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 17:18:56 -0400 From: "George de Piro" <george at evansale.com> Subject: Formaldehyde in brewing and malting Hi all, A couple of people have recently pondered the use of formaldehyde in beer production, wondering if this is just a myth. Formaldehyde was (is?) indeed used in both malting and brewing to reduce haze potential in beer. Adding formaldehyde to the steep water during malting was thought to reduce the anthocyanogens while adding it to the mash tun was thought to also reduce tannins by crosslinking them to proteins. By reducing proteins and tannins, one reduces haze potential. The above info can be confirmed in Malting and Brewing Science, pp. 828-29. I seem to recall from my college bio that formaldehyde cross-links proteins, too, but cannot recall the exact chemistry. Formaldehyde use would not be Reinheitsgebot, and therefore not be found in German maltings or breweries. I wonder if any breweries are still using it? A good reason to make your own! Have fun! George de Piro Head Brewer C.H. Evans Brewing Company at the Albany Pump Station Brewers of Kick-Ass Brown: Two time GABF Gold Medal Winner! (518)447-9000 www.EvansAle.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 21:34:36 -0400 From: Tim & Cindy Howe <howe at execulink.com> Subject: Attention: Brewers In Ontario Gilbertson & Page in Fergus, Ontario now retails malt to the home brewer. Available brands include Cargil, Dingemans, Thomas Fawcette & Sons, and Weyermann, as well as their own products which are malted on site. The malt is only sold by the 25kg sack, and there is no minimum number of sacks required per order. At the present time, they only offer "pick-up" service (no deliveries). I'm also told that they are working on a web-site, which they hope to have up and running by the end of the year. Some sample prices (subject to change, in Canadian dollars): Dingemans Pale Wheat Malt $25, Thomas Fawcette & Sons Marris Otter $35, Weyermann Munich $41 and their own 2-row $23.50. For further information, their phone number is (519) 843-1660 (I can e-mail a product/price list to anyone that's interested) No affiliation, financial interest etc. Thanks to Rick Duyck for originally sending me this information. Cheers, Tim Howe London, Ontario Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 22:00:43 -0400 From: "Steven P. Bellner" <sbellner at chartertn.net> Subject: Cocoa Additions to Beer Hello All, I am going to try an experimental beer that is a chocolate porter. I would like to add Hershey's baking cocoa into the mix to give the beer a full-bodied, chocolaty flavor. Here is the base grain bill fro a 5-gallon batch: Pale Malt - 8.5 lb. Munich Malt - 1.0 lb. Chocolate Malt - 1.0 lb. CaraMunich 80 - 0.5 lb. Crystal 80L - 0.5 lb. Cara-Pils - 0.5 lb. The recipe calls for 38.6 IBU EKGoldings at 60 min. I have brewed this base recipe, and it is quite good. Now I would like to modify it by adding the cocoa. My questions are: 1) How much cocoa should I use for a nice balanced chocolate flavor? 2) When should the cocoa be introduced into the boil? 3) With the additional chocolate flavor, should I consider cutting back on my darker malts in the grain bill, or simply leave them alone? This grain bill produces around 33 SRM, and 1.054 OG. at my brewhouse efficiency of 76%. Single-step infusin mash at 155F for 90 minutes. Another question I have been pondering (but not necessarily germain to this batch) has to do with sparge water acidification. Our tap water pH is around 8.6. I don't seem to have too much trouble with dark ales, but my German lagers have been somewhat astringent. Should I acidize my mash and sparge water to around 5.4? If so, is mineral acid (e.g. phosphoric) better than lactic? I have read several articles on this, and depending on who you believe, either one is much better than the other one. I am leaning towards phosphoric, as the residual phophate ion is a good yeast supplement. The lactic has been known to cause off flavors if used in excess, but unless total alkalinity is sky-high, I don't see the need for a tremendous amount of acid supplimentation. Thanks for the advice in advance. Brew day T-36 hours and counting. Steven P. Bellner sbellner at chartertn.net Return to table of contents
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