HOMEBREW Digest #906 Fri 19 June 1992

Digest #905 Digest #907

		Rob Gardner, Digest Coordinator

  re: Beer Head and Fruit (John DeCarlo)
  Re: English bitter info/examples (John DeCarlo)
  Lupulophobia in Milwaukee (John DeCarlo)
  Spruce Beer Questions (Chris Cook, NMOS Quality Engineer - (301)386-7807)
  English Bitter (aew)
  fruit / bad humor (Brian Bliss)
  Re:  Homebrew Digest #905 (June 18, 1992) (John E. Greene)
  .1 or .2 micron filters   (bryan)
  Re: Lupulophobia (korz)
  Reading SG from wort after it's in the Carboy? (Kent Dalton)
  Certified Beer Judge (sami)
  Strawberries in Beer (sami)
  FWD: American Classic DME (KENYON)
  Al Marshall, Hops and Balance (Jeff Frane)
  Wyeast/High gravity beers (Phillip Seitz)

Send articles for publication to homebrew at hpfcmi.fc.hp.com Send UNSUBSCRIBE and all other requests, ie, address change, etc., to homebrew-request@ hpfcmi.fc.hp.com Archives _were_ available from netlib at mthvax.cs.miami.edu (Stay tuned for info on a new archive site) **Please do not send me requests for back issues!** **For Cat's Meow information, send mail to lutzen at novell.physics.umr.edu**
---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Thursday, 18 Jun 1992 09:06:52 EDT From: m14051 at mwvm.mitre.org (John DeCarlo) Subject: re: Beer Head and Fruit >From: fjdobner at ihlpb.att.com >Subject: Beer Head and Fruit >1. Regarding the point at which fruit should be added in the >homebrewing process, my conclusion was the following: Adding >fruit anywhere in the boil would cause haze in the end. I have heard that, but not experienced it. My process starts with throwing the fruit in the freezer at least several hours before brewing, sometimes the night before. People tell me that this breaks down cell walls, making it easier for the essence to get into your beer. I then toss this in as soon as I turn off the heat and let sit for 15 minutes. So, it may be that by starting frozen and adding to boiling-hot wort, the result is really a steeping at 170F or somesuch and thus avoiding any pectin haze--I don't know.  Internet: jdecarlo at mitre.org (or John.DeCarlo at f131.n109.z1.fidonet.org) Fidonet: 1:109/131 Return to table of contents
Date: Thursday, 18 Jun 1992 09:07:32 EDT From: m14051 at mwvm.mitre.org (John DeCarlo) Subject: Re: English bitter info/examples >From: PEPKE at vaxkid.scri.fsu.edu >Subject: Re: English bitter info/examples >One more thing: do not use Cascade hops under any >circumstances. Use Northern Brewer or something like that. Yow! Personal tastes will vary, but *please*, IMNSHO, use Kent Goldings or Fuggles hops (I prefer the KG) in your bitters. I can still taste the KG from a well-brewed Young's bitter--yum! Internet: jdecarlo at mitre.org (or John.DeCarlo at f131.n109.z1.fidonet.org) Fidonet: 1:109/131 Return to table of contents
Date: Thursday, 18 Jun 1992 09:08:09 EDT From: m14051 at mwvm.mitre.org (John DeCarlo) Subject: Lupulophobia in Milwaukee >From: alm at brewery.intel.com (Al Marshall) >Subject: Lupulophobia in Milwaukee >George Fix writes: >>Jack Schmidling's generic ale was indeed clean as a whistle. I >>did, however, have some stylistic quibbles with it. Jack, >>those high alpha Chinooks need a generous malt charge to >>balance them off. I hope you had a chance to taste Bob Jones' >>Brown Ale. It clearly showed how really delicious a clean well >>balanced beer can be. >Nevertheless, this brings up a pet peeve of mine: >the seeming obsession with "balance" by certain figures in the >AHA. Let me add my own perspective here. When I go to a meeting of my local homebrewers club and taste a homebrew, my remarks will be tailored to the skill and experience of the brewer. If it is someone more skilled or at least more experienced than I, I might say "Hmmm, how did you get it so hoppy? Ten pounds of high alpha acid hops?" and go on from there. If I am talking to someone who has only had Budmillob, maybe Guiness, and is now brewing a pale ale or bitter, I will very often suggest that they taste several other beers (commercial or fellow homebrew examples) and see if there is something there they would prefer. Then I can make suggestions on possible changes to recipes or processes, if they desire. In Jack's case, I would have also recommended he try other beers that I thought were good, because he has only recently been exposed to good homebrew. Finally, whenever the issue of "stylistic quibbles" comes up, you can expect that ten people will have at least a dozen opinions on it. As a general rule, balance is a good thing, though it can certainly be overdone. Luckily, the local homebrew club has plenty of people who know nothing of balance and brew that way, just to keep the rest of us in line.  Internet: jdecarlo at mitre.org (or John.DeCarlo at f131.n109.z1.fidonet.org) Fidonet: 1:109/131 Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 18 Jun 92 09:21:04 -0400 From: cook at uars.DNET.NASA.GOV (Chris Cook, NMOS Quality Engineer - (301)386-7807) Subject: Spruce Beer Questions I have made many beers using spruce extract and I like them a lot, but I've got some questions about technique. The first spruce-flavored beer I made was Papazian's Goat Scrotum Ale, simply as a lark. I added the spruce essence (1 oz) at the beginning of the boil, as directed, and the kitchen was filled with this marvelous aroma that I'd never have connected with a tree. The beer was great. The spruce was surprisingly subtle, and I strongly recommend it for those who like richly flavored beers. I've made a batch every year or so since then. This year I had a brainstorm. Hey, I said, I love the smell during the boil, but am I boiling off all those great aromatics? What if I added the essence at the end instead of the beginning? So it goes. I added the essence with the finishing hops (shedding a manly tear for the lost smells) and proceeded as usual, although I did a little dry-hopping this batch. Looked good so far. When I sampled the ale a week later I realized that I had been right - the batch was more aromatic. Much more. I still like it, but I'm afraid that it'll be too strong for my guests. This is a major disappointment, since this style was always one of my 'show-off' beers for new homebrew drinkers. I hope things mellow with age. My question is about timing. When should I add the essence and how much should I use? Are there two options (add lots early or a little at the end)? Anyone played around with this? Chris Cook cook at uars.dnet.nasa.gov Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 18 Jun 92 09:30:21 -0400 From: aew at spitfire.unh.edu Subject: English Bitter In HBD #905 Eric Pepke gives a good overview of English Bitter. I would like to add two things: 1) Eric Says: > One more thing: do not use Cascade hops under any circumstances. Use Northern > Brewer or something like that. Also try Fuggles for bittering and Kent Goldings for Finish. Both are excellent. 2) He also says: >The only American beer I have ever tasted which comes anywhere near to a real >bitter is the bitter at the Commonwealth Brewery in Boston, MA. I cannot agree more! Since my only trip to England (darn!) I have been on an unending quest for English style ales especially Bitters. This quest alone started me homebrewing. Only a week after my trip to the U.K. I had a chance to go to the Commonwelth Brewery in Boston and tried their bitter. It is very good and the best at emulating real English bitter that I have found in the U.S. TRY THIS BEER! No, I'm not even lucky enough to work for them! I just like the beer. =============================================================================== Allan Wright Jr. | Pole-Vaulters Get a Natural High! | GO Celts! University of New Hampshire +-------------------------------------------------- Research Computing Center | Hello, My name is Inigo Montoya. You Killed my Internet: AEW at UNH.EDU | father. Prepare to die. -The Princess Bride =============================================================================== Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 18 Jun 92 10:16:48 CDT From: bliss at csrd.uiuc.edu (Brian Bliss) Subject: fruit / bad humor > well, considering that my latest mead was light, sparkling, and > had 5 lbs of oranges squeezed into it, yet one could barely discern > the orange flavor I'd say... a lot. Oranges (and strawberries, too) > don't seem to ferment a way and not leave much flavor in the final > ^^^^^ > product. Definitely avoid dry hopping it. maybe try adding orange > flavored extract - that way you could split the batch into 2 or 3 parts > with varying amount of orange, and pick the one you liked best. oops - delete that "don't" > A friend has far too many cherries in her freezer, since she wants to start > putting up this year's crop. I've offered to take them for adding to beer and > return a six-pack or two of the results in exchange. Cherries, on the other hand, do not totally ferment away. I brewed up a 6 gal batch of Cherry Bock with 10 lbs of Dark X and 6 lbs cherries, and you can definitely taste the cherries through all the malt. It's been aging for just over a year now. The beer forms a nice pink head, and if you look close, you can watch the red "bleed" away in little rivulets. > 3. Papazian specifies that fruit ought to be added at the end of the > boil. Would it be unwise or pointless to add any in secondary ferment? You add it to the hot wort at the end of the boil to sanitize the fruit as much as possible without turning into jello by boiling it. If you add it after the wort cools, add a few campden tablets to the cherry slurry, let sit a few hours, and then mix with the wort, or if you haven't pitched the yeast yet, add the tablets to the entire mixture, let sit, and pitch. - ------------------ > As an aside, the fuggles is most vigorous, the Cascades next and the > Hallertauer least vigorous. I presume next year things will even out after > they adapt to their new homes. Glad to hear the most important one is doing best :-) - ------------------ > Does anybody know of anyplace that sells agar at > reasonable prices? A local place wants almost $100 > for one[1!] pound of Malt extract Agar. They also > want $50 for a pound of DME.[This isn't a homebrew > place put a chemical supply house] Go to the nearest oriental grocery store, pull out a gun and ask the checkout lady for all the cash in the register. Then you'll have the bucks needed for the lab-grade agar... bb Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 18 Jun 92 08:40:38 PDT From: jeg at desktalk.com (John E. Greene) Subject: Re: Homebrew Digest #905 (June 18, 1992) >Date: Wed, 17 Jun 92 14:36:02 EDT >From: Arthur Delano <ajd at itl.itd.umich.edu> >Subject: Cherries in beer >A friend has far too many cherries in her freezer, since she wants to start >putting up this year's crop. I've offered to take them for adding to beer and >return a six-pack or two of the results in exchange. > Given that I'm making five to six gallons: > 1. How many pounds of cherries should I use in a basic pale ale recipe? > 2. Should I cut back on the hops for bittering, flavoring, or both? ( > (generally, my hoppier beers are more popular) > 3. Papazian specifies that fruit ought to be added at the end of the > boil. Would it be unwise or pointless to add any in secondary ferment? >Thanks for your answers in advance, >AjD The latest isssue of Zymurgy has an entire article about this subject. I found the suggestions quite surprising compared to fruit beers I have tasted in the past. Some real interesting ideas. He suggests something like .5 to 2 pounds of cherries per gallon. Use as light of malt as possible, and hop as little as possible. If I remember right he suggests cutting the hops down to 1/3 of what you would normally use. He makes some comments about Papazian's method of adding fruit at the end of the boil and also talks about adding the fruit after the wort has cooled and aging the beer with fruit. Since all kinds of fruit are now available, I was thinking about trying several of his methods to see which I would like better. I was quite surprised to read that aging with fruit would probably result in a surface infection which is unsightly in the bottle. He says that if you use a keg, you draw from the bottom first and can't see the mold so it doesn't matter (!). He claims you can't taste the mold that forms. This seems to go against just about everything I have learned about brewing to date and has me really curious. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 18 Jun 92 09:50:29 CDT From: George.Fix at utamat Our local mailer is sending everything headed for the UK into outer space so direct communication is not possible. Send us a phone number or an address. Laurie and I would love to treat you to a pint of Abbott Ale. Boy what a fine brew! Many thanks for the info from Andy Phillips and Tim Leinster. We will respond by e-mail when we get to Cambridge. I hope there is enough Abbott Ale to go around. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 18 Jun 92 10:03:20 PDT From: bryan at tekgen.bv.tek.com Subject: .1 or .2 micron filters Anyone have any phone numbers or addresses for somewhere that sells the .1 or .2 micron air filters mentioned in the last couple of digests? I.e. ones that can be attached to aquarium pumps. Thanks, Bryan Olson bryan at tekgen.bv.tek.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 18 Jun 92 12:35 CDT From: korz at iepubj.att.com Subject: Re: Lupulophobia Al Marshall writes: [some stuff deleted] >Sadly, I think the AHA in general is dominated by this obsession with beer style at the moment. What is worse, it is my unscientific impression that >the majority of the styles are skewed toward maltiness (most AHA figures >call this "balance"). >I have christened this obsession with balance to the detriment of >hop bitterness, flavor and aroma "lupulophobia". Beers of all styles should have a balance between sweetness and bitterness, malt flavor and hop flavor, malt nose and hop nose. This balance is different for each style of beer. For example, in the Munich Dunkel style, malt dominates and in the India Pale Ale style, hop bitterness dominates. Don't blame the AHA for the figures listed, they are a complilation of data collected from analysis of typical beers of the style. Note that both the gravity and IBU values in each case are a range, to account for differences among breweries and regions. >Anecdotally, lupulophobia >seems to be *somewhat* more common in the Midwestern United States >and relatively rare in the Pacific Northwest. Note the number of >small breweries brewing lagers in the Midwest vis a vis the P. Northwest >as support for this view. I was recently enjoying a pint of the first >Pilsner microbrewed in Portland, and reflecting that the >impressive hoppiness would probably not be attempted in many other >markets. >(Sadly, I've heard that the brewer intends to "tone it down". >Commercialism rears its ugly head even here). Actually, historically, breweries in hop growing regions have a tendency to brew hoppier beers. This is not surprising. It's not fair to say that the hop rates in the Pacific Northwest are the correct ones and that the hop rates in the Midwest are too low. There are regional differences in beers throughout the world. Consider Brown Ales in Nothern Great Britain and in Southern Great Britain. >I'm looking forward to seeing HBD'ers in Portland OR next year at the >AHA conference and subjecting you to a healthy dose of IBUs :-). > > -- R. Al Marshall I too am looking forward to the conference, visiting Portland, OR and getting a healthy dose of IBUs. I love hops and hoppy beers. Also, I appreciate (and support) the regional differences in beers. Al. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 18 Jun 92 15:12:22 MDT From: Kent Dalton <kentd at bach.ftcollinsco.NCR.COM> Subject: Reading SG from wort after it's in the Carboy? A while back I started having problems with contaminated batches, so I switched from dry to liquid yeast and also recently switched from a plastic primary fermenter to a glass carboy... The difference has been phenomenal! I've brewed four straight batches with this setup that have all had superb results! But there is one problem with this setup over the plastic setup: How do I take SG readings? I've tried using the blow off to read my OG but I'm convinced the stuff that's blown off is not representative of the whole batch. (i.e. I've gotten results that must be incorrect: Stuff like <1.030 for a 5 gallon batch with 8lbs of amber extract, 3lbs of specialty grains, etc. and a very large variance (somtimes down, sometimes up (!)) over short periods of time in SG readings.) And for FG, the blow off has stopped so I don't even have that to work with. I can measure FG at bottling time but by that time I've already siphoned it out of the carboy so if it has not actually reached its FG I have to bottle anyway. This happened to me recently on an otherwise great Bitter, the result was a very over-carbonated beer since it had to finish fermenting in the bottle (fortunately none blew up)! If the beer isn't ice-cold it will gush and even if poured carefully it has mega-head which takes a while to dissipate to a drinkable level. So, does anyone have any sure fire methods for measuring SG when brewing malt extract recipes with glass? I want to minimize the risk of ruining a batch since that's why went to the trouble of switching, but I still want to know when I can bottle and how much alcohol my beers contain (seeing as how this is *invariably* the first question a non-brewer asks when sampling one of my beers. sigh). /**************************************************************************/ /* Kent Dalton * EMail: Kent.Dalton at FtCollinsCO.NCR.COM */ /* NCR Microelectronics * Phone: (303) 223-5100 X-319 */ /* 2001 Danfield Ct. MS470A * FAX: (303) 226-9556 */ /* Fort Collins, Colorado 80525 * */ /**************************************************************************/ Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 18 Jun 1992 17:24:23 -0800 From: sami at scic.intel.com Subject: Certified Beer Judge To John Reed, You might try calling Mark at The Modern Brewer. I'm pretty sure he was working on it last time I was in to buy supplies. Don't know their number, but it's somewhere on Mass Ave up by Davis Square. Sam Israelit Engineer, Businessman, . . . Brewer Portland, OR Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 18 Jun 1992 17:44:48 -0800 From: sami at scic.intel.com Subject: Strawberries in Beer Arthur, > 1. How many pounds of cherries should I use in a basic pale ale recipe? ... > 3. Papazian specifies that fruit ought to be added at the end of the > boil. Would it be unwise or pointless to add any in secondary ferment? A friend and I tried strawberry beer loosely based on Papazian's recommendations. We added 10 lbs of crushed frozen berries after the boil for the primary fermentation. Then we added 5 lbs of crushed frozen berries to the secondary. I don't know how much the second addition affected things, but we have received a number of good comments on the finished product. We also switched to Cascade hops in regular quantities. Question: How do I get a copy of the Conference proceedings from the AHA this year? I was stuck on a trip and couldn't get there, but I am interested in several of the topics that were covered. Sam Israelit Engineer, Businessman, . . . Brewer Portland, OR Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 18 Jun 1992 17:37 EDT From: KENYON%1235%erevax.BITNET at pucc.Princeton.EDU Subject: FWD: American Classic DME From: MECH::KENYON 18-JUN-1992 17:28:52.56 To: scvax::in%"hpfcmi.fc.hp.com" CC: kenyon Subj: American Classic DME Folks, Please ignore the other post, I sent an old file by mistake ... this is what I really meant to say ... Folks, I recently received a catalouge from American Brewmaster. They advertise a brand of DME called "American CLassic (insert Trade Mark thingy here)". They also make a few claims that I'd like to run by all youse on the Digest for comment ... It goes like this ... ...Our stuff is excellent, blah blah blah ... "and the worts are concentrated using the most technologically advanced, high vacuum distillation process, assuring you" blah, blah, blah ... "... Higher quality control during the malt extraction produces a cleaner malt. You will therefore notice a reduced trub level in your primary fermentor and as much as a 50% reduction in sediment in the bottle with single stage fermentation. Trub is a major source of off-flavors in beer through the production of esters and fusel alcohols." There was a recent thread about Trub producing off-flavors, but I seem to recall that it ended in a hung-Digest? Has anybody got any theories as to what effects (and why) this high-vac distillation will have on the body and clarity of the finished beer? Anybody tried this stuff? It's not just American Eagle under a different name, is it? Send to me and I'll summarize, Later, -Chuck- Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 18 Jun 92 12:02:36 PDT From: gummitch at techbook.com (Jeff Frane) Subject: Al Marshall, Hops and Balance Al Marshall launched a typical Portland-area tirade, based on his impressions of George Fix's comments on Jack Schmidling's World's Greatest Beer. Having not only tasted WGB, but being a Portland-area hopfreak _and_ a BJCP judge gives me a little room to move here, I think. Al, you _know_ how much I love hops and you also know I agree with you about the attitude toward hoppiness outside the Great NW. But... George didn't not say the beer was too hoppy, he said it was out of balance and needed more maltiness to weigh up against the bitterness. I tasted that beer and I think George understated the problem; Bob Jones was a bit crueler but more on the mark. More to the point, I think you are wrong in general: I think bitterness is great but when it exists in a (sorry, Jack) thin and otherwise flavorless beer, you don't get good beer. It's not a question of being out of style; it's just a question of whether it tasted good or not. Jack's beer wasn't contaminated (which is good, but I would expect that of any brewer who had made more than a couple of batches) but it also wasn't tasty. As far as I'm concerned, a beer that has only one flavor element--bitterness--is missing the boat. I think it could have been improved considerably--not necessarily by adding a lot of malt--but simply by bringing in some other flavor elements. With all that bitterness, a profundity of hop _flavor_ would have made for a better beer. It is true, folks, that the Midwest suffers from a sort of lupuphobia; by the last night I was stumbling around, sobbing pitifully for some hops. Some creep snatched the last bottle of Liberty Ale from before my eyes at the Banquet, risking death and dismemberment. Good thing I'm a nice guy. - --Jeff Frane Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 19 Jun 92 01:53 GMT From: Phillip Seitz <0004531571 at mcimail.com> Subject: Wyeast/High gravity beers In response to the query about Wyeast cultures and high-gravity beer, I'd venture to say that the problem isn't the yeast, but the procedure. You're building up a lot of pressure in the plastic bucket, and it's hardly surprising you're going to get stuff spewed all ovethe place. This happened to me when I brewed my batch of Elbo Nerkte (allegedly) Brown Ale. I'd suggest doing it this way: put the wort into your bucket and place the top on but don't seal it up. That's right, just lay the sucker on there, and put a piece of tape over the fermentation-lock hole just to keep gunk from getting in. If it makes you feel better, you can put a VERY LIGHT weight on top to keep the cat from getting in. This will allow you plenty of ventilation for the CO2 to escape, and the likelihood that other stuff will get in is quite small, particularly considering that the CO2 will create a modest positive pressure in the bucket--thereby keeping various biological bugs on the outside. Once the kreusen has fallen (or close to it), rack the beer into a carboy. By this time the most ferocious activity will be over, and you won't be losing your wort on the floor. You'll also leave behind a fair bit of scum and have yourself a cleaner beer. By the way, there's no reason you can't peek into the bucket from time to time to see how the kreusen is coming along. Some people will even use a sanitized spoon or skimmer to take the foam off (it carries dead yeast, oils, and other stuff, I"m told). And of course, relax and don't worry. Especially about having to mop the floor. Return to table of contents
End of HOMEBREW Digest #906, 06/19/92