HOMEBREW Digest #446 Mon 25 June 1990

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		Rob Gardner, Digest Coordinator

  bubbling again, cleaning (RUSSG)
  re: Tiny Bubbles (Mark Stevens) <stevens at stsci.edu>
  repitching yeast from carboy (RUSSG)
  RE: VAXnotes (#429) (Dick Schoeller - ZKO2-3/R56 - DTN 381-2965  22-Jun-1990 1004)
  Infections (Doug Roberts)
  Zymurgy / room temp. storage (GS-11 Nicky Willis;CREPS;)
  _Pale Ale_ by Terry Foster (Rick Myers)
  Re: Tiny bubbles (pyt)
  hop bitterness (Pete Soper)
  Re: Infection (John DeCarlo)
  Re: Starters (Len Reed)
  Re: Homebrew Digest #445 (June 22, 1990) (Ken Schriner)
  starters (cckweiss)
  Andy's infection (Norm Hardy)
  Magazine (BLCARR02)
  Full wort boils... ("Gary F. Mason - Image Systems - MKO2-2/K03 - 603884[DTN264]-1503  24-Jun-1990 1915")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Fri, 22 Jun 90 09:24 EST From: <R_GELINA%UNHH.BITNET at MITVMA.MIT.EDU> (RUSSG) Subject: bubbling again, cleaning Someone mentioned that, after transferring from primary to secondary ferment container, there is very little bubbling activity for a while, then after a few days/weeks bubbling starts up again. Infection?.....I think not. I've got a theory that you lose *alot* of yeast in the transfer process, and it takes a while for the yeast that is left to reproduce enough to get the brew bubbling again. True/False? As far as clean goes, I always use a strong solution of B-Brite commercial cleaner (like twice as strong as recommended), and rinse really well. I think the ingredients are similar to the alkyl benzonium chloride mumbo jumbo someone asked about. I've had no problems (hope I don't jinx myself) and there's no chlorine smell. Russ Gelinas R_GELINA at UNHH.BITNET - -- B-Brite doesn't give me any money --- Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 22 Jun 90 09:53:24 EDT From: (Mark Stevens) <stevens at stsci.edu> Subject: re: Tiny Bubbles In Homebrew Digest #445, Dale Veeneman described a problem with gushing bottles and suspected that an infection was the culprit. These problems sound familiar. I had two consecutive batches early this year end up gushing after aging for a couple months. By March I'd had enough, so I supercleaned everything, replaced some hoses, and cut my priming sugar from 3/4 cup to 1/4 cup. I must have done something right because my March brew (an IPA) turned out super (maybe "sublime" is a better word here:) I opened the first bottles after about 4 weeks, and they were very slightly carbonated--similar to a bottle of Oxford Class. The carbonation did increase as time marched on, and the most recent bottles still show no signs of gushing--just normal levels of carbonation. I don't expect any gushers from this batch now because I've only got about a 6-pack left! - Mark Stevens stevens at ra.stsci.edu Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 22 Jun 90 09:59 EST From: <R_GELINA%UNHH.BITNET at mitvma.mit.edu> (RUSSG) Subject: repitching yeast from carboy How do you go about repitching yeast from a carboy? Do you just pick up the carboy and pour the sludge into the next batch? Should you pour *all* the sludge in? I'm thinking that timing batches may be easier than trying to culture (and less prone to infection). Anyone pitched this way? RussG. Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 22 Jun 90 07:04:55 PDT From: Dick Schoeller - ZKO2-3/R56 - DTN 381-2965 22-Jun-1990 1004 <schoeller at kobal.enet.dec.com> Subject: RE: VAXnotes (#429) Capt. Kirk, Here at DEC we have a separate VAXnotes conference on homebrewing. Occasionally, people cross-post interesting recipes, info. or discussions from the newsletter. It should be possible to write a little .com file which scans mail for the homebrew digest, extracts it to a file, breaks it up into separate messages and tries to insert them as replies based on the subject string. This would work some but not all of the time. I personally just keep all of the homebrew digests in a separate folder in mail and use the search facilities of VAXmail to traverse the archive looking for stuff. Dick Schoeller | schoeller at kobal.enet.dec.com Digital Equipment Corporation | 603-881-2965 110 Spit Brook Rd., ZKO2-3/R56 | "Either Judaism has something to say to the Nashua, NH 03062-2642 | world or it has nothing to say to Jews." | - Dennis Prager Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 22 Jun 90 08:40:59 MDT From: roberts%studguppy at LANL.GOV (Doug Roberts) Subject: Infections [Description of possible infection symptoms] > What has my kitchen contracted? More likely, what your yeast has contracted. I'm now of the opinion that most infections are courtesy of the yeast itself. I've had two contaminated batches this year, preceeded and followed by perfect batches. The only difference was the lot number of the dry yeast I had been using. I spoke with the vendor of the yeast (Great Fermentations of Santa Rosa) and relayed my suspicions regarding the yeast and was told that the Munton & Fison dry yeast I had purchased was, in fact, infected with a wild yeast strain. The solution: throw away your old yeast & buy a different brand, or assure yourself that you are at least buying from a different lot number if you don't want to change brands. - --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
Date: Fri Jun 22 11:52:23 1990 From: nwillis at ocdis01.af.mil (GS-11 Nicky Willis;CREPS;) Subject: Zymurgy / room temp. storage What is the current subscription address/cost for Zymurgy? I can't seem to find it locally. (Okla.City area) How long can you store bottled brew at room temp.(75-80degrees)? Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 22 Jun 90 13:58:04 MDT From: Rick Myers <cos.hp.com!hpctdpe!rcm at hp-lsd> Subject: _Pale Ale_ by Terry Foster Full-Name: Rick Myers Hi gang, I just received Terry Foster's new book _Pale Ale_, the first book in a series published by Brewers Publications, a division of the Association of Brewers. I found a couple things very interesting, the first being Terry's statement "Wheat malt is fairly high in enzymes, so there will be no problem in converting its starch." I was under the impression that wheat malt didn't have any enzymes, or the right kind of enzymes, to convert it's own starch. But also in the same paragraph he states that wheat malt must be mashed along with the pale malt...(which is what I do anyway). The second item, in the section on adjuncts, says "If you must use sugar in your pale ale, stick to corn or cane sugar. Contrary to common homebrewing opinion, the latter WILL NOT give your brew a cidery flavor. Its bad reputation comes from bad brewing technique-using too much sugar and not enough malt, so that the beer is far too thin." I found this fascinating, since, as he says, common homebrewing opinion holds that the use of any kind of sugar (other than priming) can cause the beer to be cidery. I haven't finished the book yet, but he gives a good history of pale ales. After reading his history and profiles sections, I now feel like I really know the differences between pale ale, India pale ale, and bitter. No brewer I had ever talked to could really tell me the difference, since the styles are quite similar. This is a book that I find hard to stop reading once I start! By the way, Terry Foster was born and bred in London, and holds a Ph.D. in chemistry from London University. Rick - -- *===========================================================================* Rick Myers Hewlett-Packard Colorado Telecommunications Division 5070 Centennial Blvd. Colorado Springs, CO 80919 (719) 531-4416 INTERNET: rcm at hpctdpe.hp.com *===========================================================================* Disclaimer: standard Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 22 Jun 90 13:49:12 PDT From: pyt at hprvlc0.hp.com Subject: Re: Tiny bubbles Full-Name: Pierre-Yves Thoulon > Everything then goes quiet and settles out and *then*, > maybe after a week in the secondary, I see tiny little bubbles rising > from somewhere. They are so tiny and few in number that I can only > see them where they collect at the neck I get those all the times. The explanation I got from my local homebrew shop tenant is that it is normal reaction between the yeast and the sediments that settled down at the bottom of the carboy. Nothing to see with fermentation, apparently. Pyt. Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 22 Jun 90 17:33:57 EDT From: Pete Soper <soper at maxzilla.encore.com> Subject: hop bitterness Craig Flowers asked me to provide more details about the relationship between hop utilization and how thick the wort is during the boil. I decided to include a little more info that might be of interest. Hop utilization is a figure of merit that expresses the proportion of bitter hop acids that are isomerized into a soluble form and dissolved into a wort, usually during the boil. Utilization varies depending on a number of factors but mainly: 1. pH of the wort 2. length of the boil 3. mechanical aspects of the boil (i.e. vigorous rolling vs simmer, etc) 4. concentration of solids in the wort (i.e. gravity) Commercial brewers who use 60-90 minute, very vigorous boils get around 25-30% utilization with plain hops and average worts. Pellet hops provide about 15% better utilization than whole hops, all other things being equal, presumably because they present more surface area. So boils with pellets might get perhaps 4% more utilization. In special contexts and with special hop extracts much higher utilization is possible but I'm describing conventional settings. The pH of the boil isn't ordinarily manipulated. Suffice it to say that utilization goes up as pH goes up but there are many tradeoffs involved. Utilization is related to the length of the boil in a very nonlinear way. So while a 60 minute boil might yield 29% utilization, the same boil for 30 minutes will yield perhaps 24% and for 10 minutes perhaps 15%. This information can help with judging the overall bitterness level of a beer made with multiple hop applications during the boil. I haven't read any numbers about boil vigor. The literature just says that a more vigorous boil gives higher utilization since the isomerization process seems to be influenced by mechanical forces. Utilization goes down as wort specific gravity goes up. The above figures are reported by commercial breweries for worts in the 1.040-1.050 (10-12.5 Plato) range. One rule of thumb says that for each 10 specific gravity points over 1.050 utilization goes down by 5%. I believe that as with practically every other aspect of brewing this relationship is also nonlinear. Also keep in mind that isomerization continues to takes place in hot wort even after the boil is stopped, so if it takes a long time to cool the wort this should be taken into account. But what this means to somebody who has a boil volume of only a gallon or two for a 5 gallon batch of beer is that much more bittering hops are needed to achieve a given bitterness in the beer. So let's say you are making a 1.050 beer with a 2 gallon boil. The wort in the boil will have a gravity 5/2 of the beer or 1.125. Thus ((1.125-1.050)/.010)*.05 -> 37.5% more bittering hops would be needed to compensate. I have experience with he opposite situation. After switching from a 3 gallon boil to a full wort boil and later to the thin-wort boil of all-grain batches I noticed I was using less and less hops to avoid excess bitterness. Did my applications fit the above rule of thumb? I have no idea! Speaking of hops, my Cascade plants are roughly 24 feet tall now and it is HARVEST TIME. It's really fun to cut open a fresh hop and see the yellow dots of pure wonderful aroma sitting there. I had no idea I could plant rhizomes in mid-March and be picking hops in Mid-June. Another nice surprise is reading that I might be able to harvest hops a little at a time for a few months. My Nugget, Tettnanger, Willamette and Saaz plants which are in partial shade have virtually stopped growing and show no sign of producing blossoms any time soon. In fact the Saaz never grew over a couple feet tall and seems very unhappy to be such a long way from home. (I'm in central North Carolina and Saaz are native to Czechoslovakia :-). - ---------- Pete Soper (soper at encore.com) +1 919 481 3730 Encore Computer Corp, 901 Kildaire Farm Rd, bldg D, Cary, NC 27511 USA Return to table of contents
Date: Friday, 22 Jun 1990 08:49:05 EST From: m14051 at mwvm.mitre.org (John DeCarlo) Subject: Re: Infection >From: "Andy Wilcox" <andy at mosquito.cis.ufl.edu> >Subject: Re: Infections > >While we're at it, here's another infection scenario in need of >help. After 40 some batches of wonderfully clean beer, (a >cautionary note to Ken Wiess, still with no infections -- it can >happen!) it seems I've got a critter. >What has my kitchen contracted? > >I'm actually beginning to worry over this, as 4 of the last 5 batches >brewed have all behaved the same way. New hoses and a kitchen scrub >down don't seem to have made any difference. Sigh. Maybe I'll just >stop brewing for a few months )-: OK, you got new hoses. Is there any other equipment you use that could possibly be harboring little beasties? A plastic fermenter or secondary that might have gotten scratched? I would replace all the plastic you are using in addition to the hoses. John "Otherwise, I don't know" DeCarlo ARPANET: M14051 at mwvm.mitre.org (or M14051%mwvm at mitre.arpa) Usenet: at ... at !uunet!hadron!blkcat!109!131!John_Decarlo Fidonet: 1:109/131 Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 22 Jun 90 11:44:51 EDT From: holos0!lbr at gatech.edu (Len Reed) Subject: Re: Starters In #445 Algis R Korzonas (hplabs!hp-lsd.cos.hp.com!ihlpl!korz) says: >Hey, I just had a thought regarding starters. I don't use them, >but up till now, I have been using dry yeast (ususally Muntona >from M&F or Doric) and without a starter, without rehydrating, >without anything, the yeast is off and running in about four >hours. In eight hours it's pumping gobs of krauesen out the >blowoff hose. Regarding using starters, what's the difference >(unless you are going to split your yeast up and freeze it) >whether you pitch into a 1/2 gallon of starter or into your >primary? It seems to me that the additional transfer causes >MORE chance of contamination. You are erroneously equating the *introduction* of infectious organisms with spoiled beer. (The organisms not only have to get in, they have to thrive and multiply.) You may also be unaware that yeast work in at least two distinct phases: respiration and fermentation. Additional handling does increase the chance of *introducing* infectious organisms. But in many cases making a starter nonetheless lowers the probability of having the beer go bad to infection. Let me explain the paradox. A vigorous yeast crop is perhaps as important as sanitation in protecting against infection. A large, vigorous yeast population will crowd out other organisms, lower the pH of the wort, use up the disolved oxygen and nutrients, and excrete by-products (such as alcohol) toxic to some organisms. Homebrew is most subject to infection during the "lag" phase. This is the time between when the wort is cooled to below 140 degrees and high kraesen. The wort is a lovely soup of nutrients and oxygen, and there are lots of bugs that are happy to set to work. They *will* get in. Anyone who thinks he can keep all bacteria out of his wort simply knows nothing about microbiology. (I'm assuming you're brewing in a kitchen and not a high-tech microbiology lab.) Our job is to keep the bad guys' numbers down, to keep out the really nasty ones that like the same conditions the yeast like, and to make the wort inhospitable to many of them. When yeast are pitched into fresh, aerated wort, they enter a repiration phase. They multiply rapidly and consume the oxygen in the wort. The generate a lot of heat. But they don't give off much carbon dioxide and the don't produce the kraesen head. The wort pH falls. This is called the "lag" period. The wort is suseptible to infection during this time. After the yeast consume the oxygen in the wort, they begin anaerobic fermentation. There is a flow of carbon dioxide away from the wort--this twarts airborne organisms. The anaerobic, low pH environment is death to many bugs. (It is this environment that inhibits the growth of human pathogens; even spoiled beer is non-toxic.) The purpose of the starter is to build up a large yeast population quickly. The starter bottle should have a lag phase of 24 hours or less; when its large yeast population is pitched into the primary, the main wort will also have a short lag time. This means that both the starter and the main wort benefit from rapid fermentation's lower pH and quicker using up of the oxygen and nutrients. This is decidedly different than a single cycle with a long lag phase. You are using virile yeast. Let me guess that you are fermenting at a high temperature, maybe the 70s? In your case making a starter would indeed do nothing positive and is therefore unadvised. I have been brewing lagers; my fermentation temperature has been the low to mid 50s. I have been using liquid Wyeast. Without a starter, it takes over 72 hours to produce a good head of foam. That's too long. Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 22 Jun 90 07:41:10 CDT From: Ken Schriner <KS06054 at UAFSYSB.UARK.EDU> Subject: Re: Homebrew Digest #445 (June 22, 1990) >Date: Thu, 21 Jun 90 10:12:38 MDT >From: hplabs!mage!lou >Subject: 1/4 kegs and infections > >IMHO, you should start with bottling and later move to kegging. Bottles have >several advantages for an inexperienced brewer; 1) You can see what's happening >in the bottle. Certain infections will show up as a ring-around-the-collar at >the beer/air interface. You can also see the sediment buildup in the bottom >and know what to expect from your kegs. 2) You can sample the beer at >different times during the aging process without tying up your fridge and/or >lugging the keg in and out of the fridge. Once you know what to expect and >have >confidence in your technique then by all means go to the kegs if you want. > >You'll want to have the bottling equipment anyway since you can't always >predict the exact amount of beer produced and you want to make sure you fill >the keg. You're likely to have some extra that you will want to bottle rather >than throw away (you keg types out there correct me if I'm wrong). > >Louis Clark >mage!lou at ncar.ucar.edu Louis makes some very valid points here. I bottled beer from '81 to '85 and never really liked doing it. It's boring, tedious work. And it makes for sticky floors which lead to more boring and tedious work. In '85 I bought some kegs and equipment (including a new refrigerator from Sears on credit) and I have never bottled since. Cross my heart. I never worry about a few bottles (or even a few six packs) of potential beer in the bottom of the fermenter when I have finished filling my keg. If I did, I'd have to bottle, and then what would be the point of having kegs? For several years of kegs I always drank the homebrew directly from the keg. Well, I poured into a mug first. If someone wanted to try some of my beer, they had to haul it out to my place in the woods (which involves almost off-road driving.) Then I realized that I could still bring my beer into town and not have to lug a whole keg of it around. By filling a sterilized plastic liter bottle that used to have Coke in it directly from the keg! Works great. Actually, I have bottled from the fermenter this way also (a long time ago.) Also not bad. I've often wondered if I am missing something by not bottling any more, but I'm too lazy to find out. I think about bottling most when I am siphoning from primary to keg. I'm usually reading the paper, or watching birds at the feeder, or fiddling with the computer. All impossible tasks if one is filling bottles. Ken Schriner BITNet : KS06054 at UAFSYSB 220 ADSB, Computing Services Internet : KS06054 at UAFSYSB.UARK.EDU University of Arkansas Fayetteville, AR 72701 (501) 575-2905 Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 22 Jun 90 21:42:37 -0700 From: cckweiss at castor.ucdavis.edu Subject: starters Al Korzonas asked about the difference between pitching yeast into 1/2 gallon of wort vs. a full batch. With disclaimer flags flying, I'll venture that the main difference is the obvious one - the relative concentration of active yeast cells per ml of wort. The more yeasties you've got in a volume of wort, the less chance a wild strain has to get established. Darwinian (or is it more Malthusian) theories in action... Once the yeast is gobbling away at the starter, it multiplies rapidly, so when the starter is pitched into the full batch, you once again reap the benefits of a greater concentration of active yeast cells per ml of wort. Disclaimers: I've never made a starter, having brewed with dry yeast exclusively. However, I've got a packed of Wyeast swelling on my kitchen counter as we speak (so to speak), and I do plan to culture that in a starter before pitching into a full 5 gallon batch. Let's just hope the package swells, but doesn't burst... Well, it's at least half past beer here in Sacto, if not beer:45. Ken Weiss krweiss at ucdavis.edu cckweiss at castor.ucdavis.edu Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 22 Jun 90 18:45:38 PDT From: hplabs!polstra!norm (Norm Hardy) Subject: Andy's infection Andy speaks of a growth on the sides of the fermenter. I assume this to mean a glass fermenter. If not, Andy should switch to a glass carboy. Some of my beers get a growth of yeast on the sides of the fermenter after a period of time, usually around 3 or more weeks. I've never noticed it to be a negative in the taste of the beer. The thought occurs to me that we homebrewers are for the most part pragmatic participants in the ancient art of brewing. A professional brewer has the advantage of alot of chemistry, some physics, and the ability to make a brewery run. I guess that this is part of the fun of homebrewing: discovering new ways to make better beer. Not to mention discarding bad methods. There's bliss in some of our ignorance, especially after one or two homebrews. Norm Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 23 Jun 90 20:51 EDT From: BLCARR02%ULKYVX.BITNET at CORNELLC.cit.cornell.edu Subject: Magazine please remove me from your mailing list. Thank you, Blcarr02 Rick Pickerell P.s. I enjoyed the digest Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 24 Jun 90 16:39:39 PDT From: "Gary F. Mason - Image Systems - MKO2-2/K03 - 603884[DTN264]-1503 24-Jun-1990 1915" <mason at habs11.enet.dec.com> Subject: Full wort boils... I am finally getting in business (dratted work keeps getting in the way). I am purchasing a 10 gallon stainless pot specifically for full wort boils; have my 5 and 6 1/2 gallon carboys for the two stage ferment; and the keg system is on the way. I have read so much in the past couple of months, saving most interesting notes in a notebook for reference, that I can't remember whether this subject has been addressed (I can't find a note about it). So... In dealing with recipes (many of them) that talk of boiling two or three gallons and mixing wort with enough water to make five when cooled, what differences, if any, might one expect by using the full quantity of water from the start? Intuition tells me that there should be none (chemically speaking). I received positive responses to my previous suggestion of doing full wort boils, but I don't think this particular question was ever raised. The only thing I see as a problem is not knowing how much loss there will be, making original volume estimation difficult. Any ideas about that? Now that I finally have (or have on the way) everything I need, I am finding that the hardest part is selecting a recipe to use for the first batch. To keep it pretty simple, I have settled upon "Carp Ale" from the 1986 Zymurgy special issue. I am substituting Wyeast for EDME; using the Fuggles/Goldings hops choice; using DME in place of corn sugar for priming; and since I have very hard water, I am leaving out the gypsum entirely. Other than that, I am following it to the letter 8') I am very detail and procedure oriented, so RDWHAH is going to be difficult, but I'll try my best. I can hardly wait! Cheers...Gary P.S. I love finding the newsletter in my mailbox (almost) every morning! Thanks. Return to table of contents
End of HOMEBREW Digest #446, 06/25/90 ************************************* -------
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