HOMEBREW Digest #520 Thu 18 October 1990

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		Rob Gardner, Digest Coordinator

  AHA Conference rumors (synchro!chuck)
  Automatic reply from MAILWATCH ("VAX MAILWATCH E1.95")
  Yeast in mead (UKNALIS)
  Re: distilled power drinks (Marc Rouleau)
  European requests... (814)867-2849" <BLI at PSUVM.PSU.EDU>
  re: Rolling Rock and aftertastes (olson)
  Re: Distillation (William Mayne)
  Re: Brewers caramel.... (Eric Pepke)
  RE:re: Germany (S_KOZA1)
  distilled power drinks (Arun Welch)
  too much sugar (stevef)
  re making diacetyl (bill crick) (Chip Hitchcock)
  Re: Return of the Green Bubbles (KOHR)
  AHA Judging (John Polstra)
  Keg equipment (sbsgrad)
  Re: AHA Judging (Steve Dempsey)
  another round on protein (Chip Hitchcock)
  brewers caramel (Rusty Davis (guest))
  Yeast repitching & AHA bashing (a little long) (Jay Hersh)
  Yeast cycling (krweiss)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Tue Oct 16 12:08:30 1990 From: bose!synchro!chuck at uunet.UU.NET Subject: AHA Conference rumors GOOD NEWS: It seems that the AHA may have finally seen the light, and are considering regional elimination rounds for the national competition. In the past, the first round was performed in Denver/Boulder and was characterized as a crap-shoot due to the sub-mediocre local judges. Rumor has it that there will be a west coast elimination somewhere in California, central region elimination in Colorado, and east coast elimination in Boston. If this pans out, the first round judging should improve substantially, especially in the west and east. Lets keep our fingers crossed. I have already told our Board of Advisors representative that I would be willing to help organize the Boston competition. BAD NEWS: Well the latest rumor about the 1991 AHA National Conference is not good. It seems that for whatever reason, the AHA and Boston University were unable to come to an agreement, so the conference will not be held in Boston. Instead it will be held in Manchester, New Hampshire. Manchester is best known for its total lack of homebrewers, breweries, brewpubs, or even decent bars, and is over an hour away from anything interesting in New England (unless I'm driving). Why they picked Manchester is a total mystery. In any case it will probably be a repeat of the lackluster Estes Park conference, but without the beautiful scenery as an added incentive. It is my guess that they will be lucky to get 100 attendees. Given the high cost of attending the conference, I have not found any Boston area homebrewers willing to make the drive, so I don't know how they hope to attract homebrewers from outside New England. This is particulary frustrating since several Wort Processors offered to help the AHA find a Boston site, but they continue to insist on doing everything themselves from Boulder. Some Wort Processors have discussed the idea of putting on some kind of event in Boston as an alternative the the AHA conference, but so far its just lips flapping in the breeze. - Chuck Cox (uunet!bose!synchro!chuck) - Hopped/Up Racing Team - Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 90 05:33:24 EDT From: "VAX MAILWATCH E1.95" <needle at vaxwrk.enet.dec.com> Subject: Automatic reply from MAILWATCH I'm on vacation from 10/11/90 until 11/5/90. Please direct any urgent issues to my manager, Michele O'Leary, at VAXWRK::OLEARY. Jeff Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 90 08:21:08 EDT From: UKNALIS at VTVM1.CC.VT.EDU Subject: Yeast in mead I had a couple of gallons of mead perking away VERY slowly for a month and this past weekend they took off and started bubbling like a beer primary fermentation. The yeast is Red Star Pasteur Champagne, which I've had no problems or bad results with in the past. My question is- was the ferm- entation inhibited by something or queued in by some seasonal change? My grandmother used to say don't make bread on rainy days... Has anyone else in the east had any unusual fermentation situations recently? Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 1990 09:02:32 EDT From: Marc Rouleau <mer6g at virginia.edu> Subject: Re: distilled power drinks On Oct 15, 10:06, florianb at tekred.cna.tek.com wrote: > How, in the name of science, > can methanol be produced from the distillation of ethanol-containing > fermented beverages? The story I've heard is that if you cook it over a wood fire bits of wood (perhaps from green wood popping or maybe from smoke) can end up in the distillation pot and get distilled. Methanol comes from wood. -- Marc Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 90 09:43 EDT From: "JEFF BRENDLE S:(814)867-2849" <BLI at PSUVM.PSU.EDU> Subject: European requests... I was wondering if any of the people reading the Digest had any experience in Europe (Netherlands, Belgium, France, Germany...) and especially Leeds, UK. My best friend is going to be over there for a semester of studies abroad in Civil Engineering and plans on traveling via rail to as many places as possible until he has to come back home. So if you can make any suggestions about where to go and what to do, with emphasis on what to drink naturally, I'd appreciate it! He assures me the pubs will be visited as often as he can...any good pub ales I can tell him about? Hope I can last until Spring Break when I go over to visit ...somehow I think the idea of a british ale in a real pub MIGHT get to me.... :-) Thanks for the help, gang!! Jeff. PSU CAC Student Operator and Sr. Consultant Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 90 10:20:21 EDT From: olson at antares.cs.virginia.edu Subject: re: Rolling Rock and aftertastes in HBD 519, Ray Mrohs writes: >I made the mistake of drinking a bottle >of Rolling Rock right after an IPA and it tasted like I just bit into an >ear of corn. In fact, I was so repulsed by this phenomenon that I haven't >bought Rolling Rock since. Maybe that's a good thing (?). BTW - we were >buying Rolling Rock because it's supposed to be the purest beer available >from any commercial US brewery - any opinions and/or facts regarding this? I don't know about purity, but there's one terrific reason for buying RR at our local high-volume supplier: it comes in longnecks with - --> silk-screened <-- labels. I *hate* soaking and peeling labels, so the RR bottles are terrific. I haven't actually had to drink any yet, I'm still working on empties left over from a friend's wedding. Not that RR is terrible beer, I'd drink it in preference to lots of other dreck. That "I just bit into a fistful of Fritos(tm)" flavor is present in other commercial beers too, I just can't remember which ones. Maybe Busch, or Miller Draft? Ray's posting also brings up the interesting question of after-taste interactions. In the Bad Old Days (before I discovered that you can't clean scratched primaries) I brewed what I now realize were some badly contaminated batches. They were marginally drinkable, so I drank them, though now that I know better I'd pour out anything that came up with such serious flaws. One night I drank one of those, then cracked a Juengling Chesterfield. The first mouthful of the Chesterfield tasted horrible, like burnt plastic or dead skunk or something (sorry I don't know the fancy judging terms.) So did the second and third, in fact they tasted much worse than the contaminated homebrew, so I decided the commercial beer had gone bad and trashed it. Some nights later, though, I stole a taste of a Chesterfield my wife was drinking -- tasted fine -- then drank one of my homebrews, then stole another sip of Chesterfield. Whammo, the skunk flavor was back, even though the *same bottle* had tasted fine 10 minutes previously. What's remarkable is how persistent the off-flavor interaction was; the skunk taste stayed with me for about 30 minutes after I'd finished the homebrew. Has anyone had similar experiences with the flavor of one beer radically modifying the flavor of another tasted later? Any idea what causes these interactions? I can imagine that it might be disastrous for beer judges. The skunk flavor was completely solid and convincing -- I had no idea during that first experience that it could be the result of an aftertaste. Do judges do anything to clean out their tasting apparatus between samples? yours for uncontaminated beer, - --Tom Olson Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 90 10:26:00 -0400 From: William Mayne <mayne at nu.cs.fsu.edu> Subject: Re: Distillation >From: cjh%vallance.eng.ileaf.com at hplb.hpl.hp.com (Chip Hitchcock) > >> From: David Coombs <coombs at cs.rochester.edu> >> Why do the feds still want to prevent individuals from distilling >> things, while commercial distilleries are now permitted? > > For the last ~200 years, the federal government has gotten some portion of >its revenues from taxes on alcoholic beverages... > I would guess that the original assumption was that beer, cider, and even >wine would be widely brewed for home use or occasional barter (sometimes > ^^^^^^^^^^ >fermented fluids were the only safe thing to drink), while stills (needing >^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ >more effort & equipment) would produce liquor for sale... I think your analysis of why distilling is illegal when brewing and winemaking are not is correct. But I question this business about alcoholic drinks being the only safe thing to drink. I have heard it many times, mostly from tee-totaler fundamentalists trying to explain the embarrassing fact that almost everyone in the Bible drank wine, Jesus turned water into wine, etc. I am surprised to hear it from (I assume) a fellow drinker. Any alcoholic drink, especially one as strong as wine, causes the body to use more water than the drink itself provides. (This has been discussed at great length under the subject of hangovers in rec.food.drink.) There is no way one can live by substituting wine for unsafe but nonalcoholic drinks. I expect the same would be true of beer, though I have never tried it. >... (Certainly there have also been >moral arguments, but it started with money.) Certainly money has been and is an issue, but moral arguments have been important, and sometimes primary. Prohibition was certainly not enacted to increase government revenue. Quite the opposite, it took away a source of revenue by making it illegal. Also counties which ban alcohol don't get economic benefit from it. They loose tax revenue not only from sales of alcohol, but other purchases made outside their jurisdiction by drinkers who have to cross the county line to buy beer. I don't defend this. Actually I object more to governments trying to legislate morality than to raising tax revenues. Like everyone, I'd prefer that they tax somebody else's vice, but I recognize this isn't always possible. One more consideration, besides those you quite correctly bring up: Since distilling requires more effort and equipment there have always been more home brewers and wine makers than distillers, hence a larger constituency to overcome the moralists and would be revenuers. Bill Mayne mayne at nu.cs.fsu.edu Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 1990 11:04:50 EDT From: PEPKE at scri1.scri.fsu.edu (Eric Pepke) Subject: Re: Brewers caramel.... Ralph L McCallister asks about brewer's caramel. Brewer's caramel is the British name for what is called "caramel coloring" in the United States. It is burnt sugar in solution and is used to make the beer darker. It is not a significant source of yeast nutrients and doesn't really do much for the flavor. You can leave it out, but if you want to follow the recipe, search specialty shops and old drugstores for bottles of caramel coloring. Eric Pepke INTERNET: pepke at gw.scri.fsu.edu Supercomputer Computations Research Institute MFENET: pepke at fsu Florida State University SPAN: scri::pepke Tallahassee, FL 32306-4052 BITNET: pepke at fsu Disclaimer: My employers seldom even LISTEN to my opinions. Meta-disclaimer: Any society that needs disclaimers has too many lawyers. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 90 11:04 EST From: <S_KOZA1%UNHH.BITNET at MITVMA.MIT.EDU> Subject: RE:re: Germany Here's my 20 millidollars worth on AHA judging. I'd agree w/ Chuck that although the system isn't perfect the judges do the best that they can. The thing that Chuck forgot to mention, however, is that all palates and nostrils are not created equally. Therefore, since the AHA has no standard- ized tasting exams there will be a # of judges who although they know the rules and think they know what a beer is supposed to taste like but do not have the physical abilty to discern faint or muted nuances. This doesn't mean that there is no value to the homebrewer in entering their libations in contests. These contests afford the entrant a non-partial evaluation of their brewing technique. That is you'll find out if there is something seriously wrong with your beers. Beyond that the score total means very little since they are subject to the judges usually predisposed likes and dislikes. In other words I'm more interested in the comments than the scoring. %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% % % % 88888888 88888888 % % 8888888888 Stephan M. Koza 8888888888 % % /XX| | | | 888 Chemistry Dept. UNH 888 | | | |XX\ % % // | | | | |8 Durham, NH 03824 8| | | | | \\ % % (( | | | | | | | | | | )) % % \\ | | | | | Bitnet: S_KOZA1 at UNHH | | | | | // % % \XX| | | | | | | | | |XX/ % % /XXXXXXXXX\ /XXXXXXXXX\ % % % %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 90 11:03:24 -0400 From: Arun Welch <welch at cis.ohio-state.edu> Subject: distilled power drinks > How, in the name of science, >can methanol be produced from the distillation of ethanol-containing >fermented beverages? Some fermentations produce both, but the methanol blows off. The problem is that though methanol and ethanol have different boiling points, if sufficient care isn't taken in distilling, the end result has a mixture of the two. In India, where I grew up, there are a number of reports every year of people being blinded/killed by drinking improperly distilled arak, a derivative of fermented rice. Not surprising, since all the stills I've seen consisted of a large earthen pot on the stove, a short piece of pipe, and a small pot half-submerged in a tub of water, with the distiller pouring water over the pot, cooling then being obtained from evaporation. No temperature controls, etc. It's pretty easy to blow it, given such conditions. ...arun - ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- Arun Welch Lisp Systems Programmer, Lab for AI Research, Ohio State University welch at cis.ohio-state.edu Return to table of contents
Date: 17 Oct 90 08:14:06 PDT From: stevef at sidd.SanDiego.NCR.COM Subject: too much sugar I just bottled up a couple cases of Boothbay Amber Light last night. The only reason I bring this up is to compare it to the last time I made this beer, which was about a year ago. The recipe is simply John Bull hopped amber malt extract, water, sugar and yeast. The first time I made it I followed the recipe on the can of malt which called for 4 lbs (!) of corn sugar added to the 3.3 lbs of extract. The result was a sugary, flat beer. The flatness was probably a result of the yeast being totally spent (I only used one packet) but it seems clear to me that 4 lbs is just too much of any ingredient that doesn't add much in the way of character to the beer. This time I used only one lb of sugar and the result, so far, is a very nice, hoppy brew. So my question is, why do these kits call for so much sugar? My potential alcohol from this last run was only about 3% (that's why I dubbed it a light beer) but I'm not in this to get drunk. This batch was also incredibly clear. Maybe I was charmed but when I racked the beer from the secondary into a bucket for bottling, I didn't transfer any (well hardly any) of the sediment. The beer was clear in the bottles almost immediately. Now I'm just hoping, but not worrying, that it carbonates. steve fanshier stevef at sidd.sandiego.ncr.com Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 90 11:19:59 EDT From: cjh at vallance.eng.ileaf.com (Chip Hitchcock) Subject: re making diacetyl (bill crick) ...Then put finings in at teh end of promary fermentation... What species? Irish Moss? (doesn't that have to be boiled?) Polyclar? (for proteins?) ?? ? Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 90 12:04:15 EST From: KOHR at LL.LL.MIT.EDU Subject: Re: Return of the Green Bubbles (This is in regard to the discussion of James Hensley's beer being attacked by some kind of mold.) My most recent batch, a variation of the "Dark Sleep Stout" recipe in Papazian's CJOHB, had a mild infection problem. I think I left it in the primary too long, so that when I moved it to the secondary, the fermentation was nearly complete. Exposure to air during racking put enough bacteria (or some kind of bug) into it that, in the absence of CO2 from fermentation to blow the bugs off (or at least starve them of oxygen), the bugs got a foothold. A greasy, whitish "oil slick" appeared on the top of the wort, and a slight off smell could be discerned in the fermentation unit. Not one to waste precious brew unnecessarily, I decided to try to fight the bugs rather than throw out the batch. I put in 1/4 cup corn sugar to restart the fermentation in the secondary, then waited a few days for the CO2 bubbles to appear. The growth of the "oil slick" stopped, and the off smell disappeared. I bottled a few days after that, figuring the bugs had mostly bought the farm. That batch is now fully aged, and tastes just fine. No one who has sampled it has gotten sick from it, so it appears that my bug-fighting strategy worked. I would recommend doing this only at the very earliest stages of infection; I bet that if you let the mold or whatever grow much further, damage to the batch's taste will be noticeable, and maybe the bugs will even be able to make you sick. I think I heard about this trick of restarting fermentation from somebody on this digest, but I can't remember for sure at the moment. David R. Kohr M.I.T. Lincoln Laboratory Group 45 ("Radars 'R' Us") email: KOHR at LL.LL.MIT.EDU phone: (617)527-3908 (home), (617)981-0775 (work) Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 90 09:05:48 PDT From: polstra!jdp at uunet.UU.NET (John Polstra) Subject: AHA Judging In HBD #518, bose!synchro!chuck at uunet.UU.NET (Chuck Cox) writes: > In order to advance through the ranks, judges have to gain experience > by judging. Yes, some judges make a career out of judging only ales, > but you can be assured they are not judging obscure lagers, especially > at a National competition. In fact, the AHA makes a token effort at > using properly experienced judges for some of the more specific styles > in their National competition, especially for things like British > Bitter, Lambic, Kolsch, etc. But in his trip report on the AHA national conference (HBD #450), Chuck wrote this: > As usual, judge assignment was a free-for-all (I managed to grab a seat > at the traditional mead table). I heard that the first place steam > beer was actually eliminated from the first round of the nationals, but > received a bye to the second round by winning best of show in a > regional. One could argue that maybe there was something wrong with > the bottle that went to the national first round, but I think bad > judging is more likely. Most competitors consider the national first > round a total crap-shoot. Yours in bewilderment, John Polstra polstra!jdp at uunet.uu.net Polstra & Co., Inc. ...!uunet!polstra!jdp Seattle, Washington USA (206) 932-6482 "Self-knowledge is always bad news." -- John Barth Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 90 16:18:30 GMT From: sbsgrad%sdphs2.span at Sds.Sdsc.Edu Subject: Keg equipment From: "Sparky" <sslade at ucsd.edu> (Steve Slade) Date sent: 17-OCT-1990 09:11:07 PT Hi all! The other day I had the good fortune of receiving a free pony keg and tap. This is a 7.75 US gallon, 30 liter keg made by Miller brewing co. Since I have never owned a keg before, I have naturally ignored all information relevent to kegging on this network. Now, of course, I feel like a fool. Could some kind person out there please send me advice on how to use this baby for storing homebrew? Specifically, I wonder if the keg can be pressurized with CO2 using the tap that came with it. The tap is the standard type that you would get with a keg from the local liquer store - a hand pump and dispensing valve rig that fits over a ball valve assembly which is secured to the top of the keg. All advice is greatly appreciated! Thanks in advance, Sparky (Steve Slade) Internet: sslade at ucsd.edu UUCP: ...ucsd!sslade Bitnet: sslade at ucsd.bitnet DECnet/SPAN: SDPH1::SBSGRAD Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 90 11:55:27 MST From: Steve Dempsey <steved at longs.LANCE.ColoState.Edu> Subject: Re: AHA Judging In HBD #518 Chuck Cox sez: > Norm Hardy complains that the AHA needs to train beer judges better... > > I assume that you are unhappy about a score you received in a competition. If > you have a serious complaint, you can tell the AHA/HWBTA judge program about > it, simply send a copy of your score sheet(s) to the AHA (the address is in > Zymurgy) and explain your problem. Judges can be reprimanded. While it's true that you can go through the `appeal' process, it's not likely to yield much. Heck, they may not even be able to identify the judge, let alone locate him/her. Many of the judges are obviously not in the BJCP. If your beer was given a low score, it's possible that any of the following occurred: - the bottle was not clean (or retained cleaning sol'n residue) - caps were not clean - bottle was not sealed well - your bottle filling equipment was not clean - the judge was inexperienced and had no guidance - the judge did not take his job seriously - the judge had a cold (ability impaired) - the judge recently burned his tongue sipping hot coffee :-p - your beer was the last in a `flight' and the judge was just tired/burned out (or drunk, too much RDWHAH) - your beer was just not up to snuff in comparison with others in the class for the particular session (flight) - your beer was as bad as they say it was :-( I recently had the opportunity to talk with some of the folks who run the national competition & BJCP and those were but a few of the comments they had on entrants' complaints. > As for training, the judge program provides NO training of any kind. > Judges are expected to be self-educated. There is no training per se incorporated with the program. The AHA *does* provide training. I just finished the Fall Beer Evaluation Seminar, a course designed as an introduction to: the brewing process, ingredients, styles, and evaluating characteristics of the finished product. This included prepared (doctored) samples to exhibit common problems, some commercial samples of mostly common styles, and a couple of specialty homebrews. We judged all the commercial and homebrews using the regular competition procedures and score sheets. This *is* judge training. I'll post more about this in a day or two when I can collect my notes and include more details. And in #519 Dave Suurballe rebuts: >I know there were experienced judges at the National Competition. I know >some panels were better than others. My experience there, however, shows >that Chuck's stated view is not based on reality. The AHA *is* using >inexperienced judges in the National Competition. It makes *no* effort >to find judges experienced in some of the more specific styles. I don't recall anyone posting the numbers of entries in the national this past year: over 2000. Guess how many judges it takes to evaluate that many entries? It's no surprise that they'll take anyone who volunteers to do judging. There are just not enough judges. Next year the judging will be split between three locations for the first round. This will help with the numbers. The score sheets have also been revised to identify the judge as: inexperienced/apprentice, recognized, certified, national, experienced but not part of BJCP, and other. Also, they plan to go strictly by the numbers instead of `best 2 of 12 advance to next round'. This will undoubtedly raise more complaints due to the lack of coordination between scoring levels. I must take exception with Dave's last comment. They *do* want to get at least one experienced judge on every team and try to do so. It's the responsibility of the organizers to make sure this happens but the sheer size of the national competition is really overwhelming. Chances are fair to middlin' that your potentially winning entry can get lost in the shuffle. If you want to see the situation improve, become a judge and help recruit judges who will take their job as seriously as you take your brewing. Steve Dempsey, Center for Computer Assisted Engineering Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523 +1 303 491 0630 INET: steved at longs.LANCE.ColoState.Edu, dempsey at handel.CS.ColoState.Edu UUCP: boulder!ccncsu!longs.LANCE.ColoState.Edu!steved, ...!ncar!handel!dempsey Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 90 12:37:56 EDT From: cjh at vallance.eng.ileaf.com (Chip Hitchcock) Subject: another round on protein I decided to try for a good protein break after the back-and-forth of the last few weeks' Digests. I did a half batch of the Double Stout recipe from Zymurgy: 8 oz crystal 3 oz roasted barley steep 30 minutes at ~150F in a quart of water strained, washed, made up liquid to 3 quarts 1 3.3# Mountmellick stout kit 8 oz amber dry malt 1/2 tsp gypsum boil 45 minutes; add 1/2 tsp Irish Moss after 15 minutes. 1/4 oz Fuggles plug (steeped 4 minutes after boil) poured the resulting tar over 6 quarts of frozen bottled water (took 1 qt out of each of 2 1-gallon plastic bottles, froze, cut away plastic) in my plastic fermenter. This was far too much ice; after 2.5 hours and another 2 quarts of water there was still lots of ice, but the temp was around 42F. I racked this to warm glass (found only a few hard bits (undissolved dry extract?) in the bucket) and pitched. Temp was 56F; 6 hours later (60F) there was an inch of cottony-looking stuff in the bottom of the carboy. I have several questions about this: - How long should you have to wait at how low a temperature for a cold break? - Has anyone tried Miller's recommendation of pitching into near-freezing wort, waiting ~6 hours, then racking? What was the result? How big a culture did you pitch? - I'm assuming the precipitate is protein. How much of a taste problem am I likely to get from having the beer sitting on protein (instead of being mixed with it) for however long I let the primary go? Would it be (havebeen) useful to rack again as soon as the blowoff subsided? - Where/how do proteins cause a problem? Do they have off tastes themselves, do they decay in the fermenter or bottle, do they react with yeast? - --Chip Hitchcock (cjh at ileaf.com) Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 90 11:55:26 PDT From: rdavis%datsun.llnl.gov at lll-lcc.llnl.gov (Rusty Davis (guest)) Subject: brewers caramel I personally use gravey browning, but make sure it is a type with no additives (eg. don't use bisto or the like) bst rgrds Rusty =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= | Russell K. Davis | | | Technological Investigator | Life is the ONE game you can | | 80, Briarmeads, Oadby, | | | Leicester, Leicestershire, | NEVER win!!! | | England LE2 5WD. | | | Tel: +44 (0) 533-716289 | | -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- Return to table of contents
Date: 17 Oct 90 15:40:50 EDT From: Jay Hersh <75140.350 at compuserve.com> Subject: Yeast repitching & AHA bashing (a little long) To richard whitman: you can just pour the slurry right off the bottom of one batch striaght into the next. This usually works fine. As for getting better and better, I don't know about that. Brewers hire microbiologists to culture and maintain yeast purity. From what I understand yeast mutates. I know some breweries wash their yeast strains with mild acids as at least one type of mutation is weakening of cell walls. Washing with acid kills these mutants. I would thus suggest that you not re-pitch too many times. What is too many?? Depends on the yeast strain but I've heard tha Bud tosses theirs after six times so that should give you a guideline. AHA Bashing. Yahoo, let em have it. While I'm the last one to say I told you so (yeah right :>) ) we had a discussion on this net over a year ago where I bashed on the AHA competition system (though not as elegantly and to the heart of the matter as Dave S. has) for its short comings and proposed a tiered competition system where rather than the artificial size criterion that now determines judge experience point awards, a true system of local, regional and national competitions in a pyramid setup with winners advancing up the ladder would exist. At least a portion of this is now coming into place with the advent next year of regional first round competitions to alleviate the total lack of ability to deal with the number of entries received. (At the GABF a similar attitude is evident in the staffing, or generally shortfall thereof in setup and serving since the festival relies heavily on volunteers). Judging still seems pretty haphazard. The pool of available judges is not large enough and even those that are in the program have holes in their knowledge. Unfortunately it seems that there is no attempt to try to factor this into the competition setup if indeed there is a way to do so. My experience at the AHA nationals 4 years ago was very similar to what Dave describes so nothing has changed there! While I am an active judge I currently have let my AHA membership lapse and plan to keep things that way until a few things change. While the board of advisors is a good idea there is no direct member representation. The BOA is appointed not elected. I still call for elections for BOA members. Perhaps elected members might more strongly address such critical shortcomings as the competition seems to have. Dave's assertion that the AHA National is sloppy and disorganized is pretty much on the mark, though in fariness they do have a shoestring staff. Partition of some of the AHA responsibilities into a publications branch to continue Zymurgy (which is top notch) and a member organization similar to say the ACM or IEEE might do much to allow each group to focus better on their tasks (i.e magazine publication in one, and member development and support in the other). As for the training of judges local groups have started to take on this responsibility. Only about 1/2 of the training can be done on your own from reading. The rest needs to be done with palatte training and other hands on approaches. Here in New England Steve Stroud and I have done Dr. Beer sessions. I began doing these 2-3 years ago. The AHA provided me with a list of substances to add to doctor beers and left me on my own. Through trial and error and continued refinement (with help from people like steve and some associates back at RPI) I was able to get this down to a farily useful 2-3 hour session for the initial training and (very important) continued refreshing of judges palettes. The response so far has been very positive. The drawback is that a few of the samples require special equipment and a bit of care, though most can be done easily. I don't think bagging the BJCP is the answer. I think strengthening it is. I am willing to try to help interested individuals set up Dr. Beer seminars in their areas and jump start them with our (Steve and I) experiences. If you want to foot the bill I'll travel to do these. Again I believe an elected BOA might increase pressure to strengthen the BJCP. While I still have some fundemental grievances with aspects of the AHA to be fair I can't post a blanket condemnation, just my ideas on how to take the framework they have begunlnd try to forge a much stronger judge and competition system from it. - Jay H Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 90 14:15:15 -0700 From: krweiss at ucdavis.edu Subject: Yeast cycling I have a plan. We all know that there's nothing more dangerous than Ken with a plan, so let me know if this is a foolish idea... I've been thinking about re-using my yeast by arranging to brew on the same day I have a batch ready to bottle. I'll just cook up my beer, and bottle the other batch while the new stuff is cooling off in an ice bath. Then I'll pitch the slurry from the bottom of my secondary fermentor, instead of culturing a starter from a new packet of yeast. The only risk I can see here is that if the batch I'm bottling is infected, I'll be adding that infection to the new beer. On the other hand, I always taste the beer I'm bottling, so I'd pitch a packet of Whitbread's if things seemed off. The advantages are that I would be pitching a *huge* volume of yeast, and I'd be saving a few dollars per batch. Of course, if the "nickel a drink" thing passes here in CA, a few dollars for two cases of beer is going to seem like very small potatoes indeed. So, what have I missed? Is this plan reasonable? Sactobeerfest was a nice event. I got to taste some Raspberry Imperial Stout, which was a treat for me. This stuff is so far away from my preferred style that there's no way I'll ever make it myself, but with some aging it ought to be a really nice winter beer. At the risk of losing my well deserved reputation for personal modesty, I'll add that my beers received the accolade of being "Very beer-like in nature." Awriight! But seriously, I was impressed. Out of about 10 beers we tried, there were only two clunkers, and both were presented as "Something I made the second time I tried homebrewing..." When I compare the average quality of homebrew I made and tasted ten years ago to what's being produced now, I am truly amazed at the progress. Oh yeah, and a retraction of my recent Edme-bash. I tried one of those 4 month old ginger beers that caused me such concern. It was pretty good! A little overcarbonated, and very very dry, but definitely not a gusher. I'd have to conclude that Edme is significantly more attenuative than other yeasts, and perhaps ferments out completely a bit more slowly, but there was nothing in the taste or level of carbonation to indicate a problem with the yeast. I think I'll stay with Wyeast anyway, though. Ken Weiss krweiss at ucdavis.edu Return to table of contents
End of HOMEBREW Digest #520, 10/18/90 ************************************* -------
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