HOMEBREW Digest #1592 Wed 30 November 1994

Digest #1591 Digest #1593

		Rob Gardner, Digest Janitor

  Why ask Why -- Sam Adams? (Jack Skeels)
  Trub, Trub, Trub, Trub, Trub ("Robert W. Mech")
  Re: Allergy Challenge (Thomas Junier)
  Thanks to all of you! (Dave Setser)
  Glatt Gravel Grinder (Jack Schmidling)
  "Jack Daniel considers beer" (smtplink!guym)
  Trashed Batch?? (Schwab_Bryan)
  Keg security (Steven Lichtenberg)
  Wiley Mill ("v.f. daveikis")
  Kolsch Recipes (Mark Stickler)
  Rasberry beer/5l minikegs (Robert Hatcher)
  no barley ()
  FOOP (Domenick Venezia)
  Flavourless beer -- again (Eamonn McKernan)
  Re: Blow Off Beginners / Heat transfer. (Dion Hollenbeck)
  Air Lock Contents (John DeCarlo              )
  Shearing Proteins (Phil Miller)
  Over-Aeration (Domenick Venezia)
  Sucking Airlocks/Blow-off (Domenick Venezia)
  Blow-off, Fermentor Geometry ("Manning Martin MP")
  Ricks X MAs Ale and 2 litre plastic bottles (MFOR8178)
  Grant's Imperial Stout Clone (Steve Armbrust)
  Gott coolers ("James Giacalone")
  Brown malt, aeration, yeast starters (Maribeth_Raines)
  Beer tastings for swiller education (uswlsrap)
  head retention? (CheeseyDog)
  Head (Cecila Strickland )
  Fullers ESB / Newcastle Brown Ale Recipes? ("KEVIN FONS Q/T BPR X7814)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Mon, 28 Nov 94 18:37 EST From: Jack Skeels <0004310587 at mcimail.com> Subject: Why ask Why -- Sam Adams? After a few moments I realized that my friend wasn't kidding, he really _did_ want his first homebrew experience to be that of brewing a Sam Adams (tm) clone. I tried to talk him out of it, offering many different possibilities, but to no avail. My real concern was that I would not be able to find a recipe in any of my books or the Cat's Meow, and then I would have to ask in the HBD (yipes!) for a recipe for SA (OhMyGawd!). I hope that some benevolent soul will give me a clue as to the formulation of SA, without charring my undergarmets. For the record, I don't think that SA is all that bad tasting of a beer (not all that great either), and my friend has no idea of the _reality_ behind the Patriot's Label (tm). At least I can re-use the bottles for homebrew, which is more than I can say for the boys in Chico. So,...could somebody help me out on this? I'll take any recipe that I can get, and I'll convert it to extract/grain for him. This is a great opportunity for you to lure yet another soul into the wonderful world of homebrewing! Think of it as a holiday gift to someone less skilled than yourself. E-mail is fine, if you want to keep a low profile too ;-) Thanks in advance, Jack Skeels JSKEELS at MCIMAIL.COM Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 1994 04:59:03 -0600 (CST) From: "Robert W. Mech" <rwmech at eagle.ais.net> Subject: Trub, Trub, Trub, Trub, Trub Trub! Im curious as to why I see alot of people worrying about it. Ive been brewing now for a year, and recently went all grain. My Hot/Cold breaks usualy allow me to remove a considerable amount of trub before fermentation, however, why is it such a worry for people? Ive found that out of all of my batches, a touch of irish moss in the boil, along with 2 stage fermenting (Primary, and secondary) results in clear, trub free beer. By the time its in the bottle, ive got little to no trub in the bottles whatsoever. The beer is clear, and tastes just fine. Im curious as to why there is so much effort being brought on to get rid of it before fermenation. Is there something im missing in all of this effort? What are people actualy gaining from it? IMHO it would seem as if there is just alot of extra effort going on with little to no gain. Robert rwmech at eagle.ais.net Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 1994 11:56:12 +0200 From: tjunier at ulci07.unil.ch (Thomas Junier) Subject: Re: Allergy Challenge Hi all! In HBD #1591, Rich writes: >A friend of mine has a grain allergy. She is allergic to wheat, barley and >rye but not allergic to rice or corn. She asked me if I could make a beer >for her using only corn and rice. I told her you _COULD_ (hell, Coors does >it...) but it wouldn't taste like beer. I also envision the stuck sparge >from hell. >The challenge is: Can the collective wisdom of the HBD come up with any >creative ideas to approximate beer without making her ill. Well, I've heard that Guinness brew their stout with sorghum in some African countries. I don't know the reason (perhaps it's forbidden to import foreign grain, or something). I don't know either if the result tastes anything like the original, Irish version. But if it does, well, it means you can approximate a *very* good beer with something else than barley. Hope this helps... Thomas Junier - Entropy NOW! - Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 1994 07:37:57 -0500 From: dsetser at nttfsrv.gsfc.nasa.gov (Dave Setser) Subject: Thanks to all of you! I'd like to thank each and every one of you who helped me out, either privately or publically in sovling my keg to bottle problem. The response has been great and very informative. For the present, I'm going to use the plastic soda bottle method (at a very cold temperature). Later, there will be an attempt to build a counterpressure filler based on a lot of good data provided. Happy holidays. Dave Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 94 07:06 CST From: arf at genesis.mcs.com (Jack Schmidling) Subject: Glatt Gravel Grinder In spite of the continuing reports of plastic gear failure in actual use, I keep hearing this story about how Glatt tests the durability of it's mill by grinding up a pound of aquarium gravel with no untoward results. Most recently, this was reported in a review published by the Yankee Brew News. Not wishing to attempt this seemingly worst case test, YBN used raw wheat in the durability test. To quote the authors, "The Glatt did not fare well in the toughness department." Simply put, the gears failed. Clearly, the gravel grinding is an empty boast that leads to undeserved confidence in the integrity of the Glatt. It is not hard to understand how gravel can be crushed in a mill that fails when attempting to crush hard grains. Although extremely hard, gravel is also very friable, i.e. it fractures and crumbles very easily. It is also consistantly smaller in size than grain and requires less reduction to get through the roller spacing. Wheat is not hard in a technical sense but might be considered very tough. More importantly, it is not friable and does not crumble much when squeezed. It simply gets thinner and breaks up enough to allow mashing. The result is, it requires far more energy to pass through the standard roller spacing than does aquarium gravel. The gravel would eventually raise hell with the surface of the rollers but it's pretty much of a cake walk to crush. If you doubt any of this, try squeezing a piece of gravel and a piece of wheat in a pliers. Better yet, use your wife's diamond, the results will be even more impressive. Just for the record, YBN also reported that the crank twisted off on the MM but admitted they might not have it on right and it is one of the things one must do when assembling a new mill. If the set screw is not securely tightened against the flat on the shaft, all bets are off. js Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 94 06:22:41 MDT From: exabyte!smtplink!guym at uunet.uu.net Subject: "Jack Daniel considers beer" From this morning's Business section of the Charlotte Observer: LYNCHBURG, Tenn.- "The distillery that gave drinkers a slow-sipping whiskey is considering a slow-brewing beer. Jack Daniel Distillery is testing Jack Daniel 1866 Classic Amber Lager Beer in Nashville, Tenn., and it will decide whether to market it after the month-long taste test. Jack Daniel is joining a move to revive turn-of-the-century beer production practices: slow brewing small batches from only 100% malted barley, hops, yeast, and water, all from the United States." Lynchburg is still in a dry county, yes? -- Guy McConnell \/ Exabyte Corp. /\ Huntersville, NC \/ guym at exabyte.com Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 94 07:58:00 CST From: Schwab_Bryan at lanmail.ncsc.navy.mil Subject: Trashed Batch?? Fellow HBR's before any flack is given my way, I know, I should know better by now, I promise, I'll never do anything this stupid again! Last night I decided to use up all of my extract and then I'll go full head into all grain, Fianally!! Well here's what I did: 1/2# Munich Malt 1/2# Roasted Barley 1/2# Carmel Malt brought to 170 degs. in three gals of H20 and left for 35 min. removed, and added 3 cans of 3.3# DME syrup, 8oz. of Malt. Dextrine, 1oz of Chinook Hops for the first 30 mins., added 1 cup Molasses, 15 min later 1 oz of Chinook hops, last ten mim. 1 oz of Irish Moss, and another 1 oz of Chinook Hops. Immersion cooled to 68 degs and added to 2 gals of H20, pitched the rehydrated dry yeast and all was to fine. Couldn't sleep, woke up about three AM and decided to crab a snack, walked into the pantry and #%&* at *&%#^ at , *&^%#& at , Blow off everywhere. (Remind you off another experience that I encountered doesn't it??) Well to be honest with myself, I didn't even consider the use of a Blowoff tube, Don't know why because during the cleanup, it became more and more evident to me, that I used the wrong size Carboy, a 5 gal, in lieu of the 6.5 I usually use!! Ok, now comes the Flack from all of you, I, during the frenzy I was encountering, transfered all contents from the primary into another primary ( splashing of course!) and proceeded to boil up some H20 and rehydrate another pack. of yeast. I know this is not usually considered an ethecal method of purist Homebrewing, but excuse me, I panicked!! As I see it, if I return home from work, and all is bubbling away, although I doubt it, No problem, maybe, If not, just trash the damn batch and proceed right into all grain and remember the joys of what could have been a pretty good stove top brown whatever with a OG of 1.072 and great potential. Hopefully with an increase of grains, I can redue this and it will twice as better. Private Flacking is acceptable Bryan {Schwab_Bryan at LANMAIL.NCSC.NAVY.MIL}:DDN:NAVY Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 1994 08:54:02 -0500 (EST) From: Steven Lichtenberg <steve at Pentagon-EMH6.army.mil> Subject: Keg security Greetings all -- In the course of discussions with my wife last night, she recommended that I scrap my keg set up (horror of horrors). She is very concerned about several issues. Most if not all of these revolve around small children (mine are 4 and 1) and the attractiveness of a refrigerator and pressurized vessel in the family room. She is worried about the kids hitting the tap handle and a flood of beer on the floor or one of the kids DRINKING some of the beer. So far my son has tasted beer once and hated it (some things are good) so he is not inclined to just go over and pour a glass. Of course, as he gets older this may become an issue. Her other concern is that there is a 20 lb bottle of CO2 just waiting to become a rocket in the middle of the house. I have assured her that exploding pressure tanks are very rare (I do keep my tanks in certification although that was not the case when I got them; watch out for soda company bottles, they are notorious for not recertifying them EVER). Anyway I would like to know what others of you do to keep small hands out of your beer. Should I invest in a tap lock or is there another method of securing the kegs? I already secure the CO2 tank to the wall (overkill for a 20# tank required for a 50#) so I am confident that it will not fall over on someones head or become a rocket engine. Is there anything else I can do to maintain safety? TIA for any advice. Keep brewing... - --S ^ **** ---- "There's always time for a Homebrew!" ---- **** C|~~| ------------ Steven Lichtenberg --------------- C|~~| `--' ------ steve at pentagon-emh6.army.mil --------- `--' -- Programmer/Analyst - Datanamics, Inc. -- -- Gaithersburg, MD & The Pentagon --- ----------------------------------- ENJOY LIFE--THIS IS NOT A REHEARSAL Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 1994 09:35:05 -0500 (EST) From: "v.f. daveikis" <vdaveiki at julian.uwo.ca> Subject: Wiley Mill Howdy! I would like to get information on a motorized mill that I found recently. It's a big heavy thing called the "Wiley Mill No. 3 (or 13?). Has anybody heard of it (it's pretty old) or know anything about Wiley mills? I'd like to know if I can use it before I get it, even though I think that I can get it for free. Upon a close inspection it looked like it could be used for cracking grains-- it has 4 'paddles' that rotate in the milling chamber and these mate with four adjustable blades mounted to the periphery of the chamber. ( obligatory cheesy ascii diagram to follow) FRONT VIEW ------------ \ /---- grain in here \ / . . . ./------- adjustable blades (4) . \ | / . . | . . | . . |--------------------milling wheel/paddle . --------- o-------- . . | . . | . . | . ./ | \.----one of the other blades . . ...... | | | |------ crushed/cracked results ______ Please, if anyone knows of the efficiency of the unit, please let me know. I have a small apartment and this big heavy thing has got to be worth it before I have to drag it up the stairs. Thanks in advance, Victor Daveikis, London Ontario. Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 94 10:11:39 EST From: Mark Stickler <mstickle at lvh.com> Subject: Kolsch Recipes Anyone out there have a Killer-Kolsch recipe they wouldn't mind sharing? I'm interested in all aspects, i.e. grain bill, mash schedule, hop schedule and perhaps most importantly, fermentation temperatures. This is one of the few styles I've never attempted but have enjoyed in its home of Koln, Germany. TIA. I suspect more people might be interested so while private email is fine, it shouldn't hurt to post to the entire list. Who would be offended to see a great recipe? Mark Stickler (mstickler at lvh.com.) Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 94 10:05:07 536913400 From: Robert Hatcher <rhatcher at freenet.scri.fsu.edu> Subject: Rasberry beer/5l minikegs I have also recently brewed a rasberry beer. I used a basic wheat recipe and for fruit added 60oz of "Smuckers Simply Fruit" - rasberry flavor, of course. I used a 5gallon plastic bucket for a fermentor and had a major mess when the top blew off. I did not use a blow off tube, hadn't had to in the past, but will in the future, or use a bigger fermentor. But, all I did was replace the top, with a blow off, and let it ferment on for several more days (the blow off occurred after about 24 hours). Trnsfered to secondary after about 7 days. Added some polyclar for about 4 hours then racked again. 2 weeks later I bottled. All this was at the 1st of November and I now have a fine rasberry beer (a little strong on the rasberrys, but a good taste nonetheless. So, don't worry ... On 5l minikegs, I love them. But to those of you contemplating, if you have a choice, get the metal taps as opposed to the plastic. If you do get the plastic, be careful how tight you screw the co2 on - -- the male threads can break off. If your away from home when this happens, as I was, your left with a minikeg of beer that is slightly carbonated and difficult to serve. - -- Robert Hatcher (Database Support) rhatcher at freenet.scri.fsu.edu Southern Company Services "I'm growing older but not up!" Atlanta (404)668-3329 Return to table of contents
Date: 03 Jan 00 22:22:51 -0500 From: at f102.n364.z1.fidonet.org Subject: no barley I hope this message makes it through to some homebrewing experts. I have a rather rare problem that I think would make most beer lovers run for cover. I am a beer lover who suffers from an affliction called Celiac disease, which means I can't tolerate wheat, oats and ... - barley. GASP. I am therefore relagated to a life of drinking wine, which isn't all that bad, but it's not beer. I crave beer! It's been almost a year since I had to give it up and it's been tough. My question is, does anyone out there know how to make a beer with no barley? I can tolerate grains such as rice and corn (though rice would be better). I have never brewed a batch in my life, but I'm willing to learn. I was about to delve into homebrewing when my allergy was discovered. Now I'm ready to attack from a different angle. As I understand it, most malt extracts are made from barley. I'm hoping that some are made from rice or corn. Please help. One last question - does anybody know if Tsing Tao contains barley? I know it's a rice beer, but I'm not sure if it contains anything else. If anyone has any info that can help me, I can be reached at at f102.n364.z1.fido.net.org Thank you! Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 1994 08:32:43 -0800 (PST) From: Domenick Venezia <venezia at zgi.com> Subject: FOOP In #1591 MiniUniTnk at aol.com gives a great description of head formation. in it he states (sorry for the long excerpt but the context is important: >-These molecules are chains that have both hydrophilic (water loving) and >hydrophobic (water hating) ends. In solution, they have a certain initial >configuration (shape). > >-When excited by change in pressure, boiling, agitation, bubbles are >formed, and the molecules get exposed to the liquid/gas interface. The >hydrophobic ends stick their heads into the gas bubble while the rest of >the molecule remains in solution. > >THIS CONDITION CHANGES THE SHAPE OF THE MOLECULE, i.e., de-natures it. > >-The tail of the molecule in solution increases the viscosity of the >inter-bubble fluid, impeding drainage and prolonging the life of the foam. >-When the foam collapses, and the molecule returns to solution, it has a >different shape and no longer has the strongly hydrophobic and hydrophilic >ends. It no longer is a driving factor in head formation and retention, >therefore Most denatured proteins will spontaneously "renature" when returned to the original conditions. Presumably if a protein is "natured" when in solution in the beer/wort, then denatures by the hydrophilic/phobic forces in the foam, then falls back into solution it will refold to its original configuration. Actually, given that the foam is a result of denatured (extended) proteins, it doesn't matter how the protein folds in solution and it doesn't matter whether it returns to its "original" configuration, since its behavior in solution does not determine foam production. Given that foam production is the result of the hydrophilic/phobic character of the proteins, and that hydrophilic/phobic character of the protein is solely determined by its sequence of amino acids, unless that sequence changes, e.g., the chain is broken or chemical bonds are broken, its hydrophilic/phobic character can not be "used up" or changed. If FOOP is a real effect (I'm still skeptical) then IMO the leading putative mechanism is the mechanical shearing of the extended polypeptides as the bubbles stretch and burst, as originally described by Erik Speckman. A mechanical protease if you will. If Siebel further elaborated on this topic I'd like to hear about it. I think that many keggers force carbonate in this way and it would be good to know if we are trashing our head formation/retention. I'll try and shake some FLAT beer. Also, I vote to nuke NDN gateway! Domenick Venezia ZymoGenetics, Inc. Seattle, WA venezia at zgi.com Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 94 11:38:14 EST From: Eamonn McKernan <eamonn at rainbow.physics.utoronto.ca> Subject: Flavourless beer -- again This is the second time I've had to repeat my questions to the digest. I guess my inquiries are somewhat off the beaten track ? I only got one response to my query of a few days ago :( Oh well, I'm a rather persistent fellow... I have a watery lager in the secondary. I want to add some flavour, but not much (if any) more alcohol. I was wondering if it hurt beer to add any fermentables after the beer was in the secondary? After all, the yeast might be busy reducing diacetyl or something (whatever it does when beer "bulk ages" ), and interrupting that may mess things up, I thought. Further I was looking for suggestions of what exactly I should add to give it flavour. Malto-dextrin and sugar at bottling was suggested. Right now it tastes like watery molson Ex (which itself is pretty watery stuff! ) Thanks for the BW Eamonn eamonn at rainbow.physics.utoronto.ca Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 94 08:42:17 PST From: hollen at megatek.com (Dion Hollenbeck) Subject: Re: Blow Off Beginners / Heat transfer. >>>>> "John" == Palmer John <palmer at ssdgwy.mdc.com> writes: John> Rich Larsen asked about heat transfer of type 403 stainless kegs John> (sic). John> Here are the numbers: John> 304 stainless steel 9.4 BTU/hr*ft*F (at 212F) John> 3003 aluminum alloy 90-104 BTU/hr*ft*F (at 75F) John> C11000 copper (99.95%) 224 BTU/hr*ft*F (at 68F) John> (Multiply by 1.73 to convert to W/m*K) Thank you John, as always, excellent techincal information. However, for the Thermodynamically Handicapped (like myself), I heat 10 gals of sparge water to 170F in a covered SS keg and 1/2 hour later, it is only down to 168F with the outside temperature being in the 70s. Empirical SWAG (Scientific Wild Ass Guess) to give us TH people something to sink our teeth into. dion Dion Hollenbeck (619)675-4000x2814 Email: hollen at megatek.com Staff Software Engineer Megatek Corporation, San Diego, California Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 94 11:54:55 EST From: John DeCarlo <jdecarlo at homebrew.mitre.org> Subject: Air Lock Contents "Vandermey, John" <JAVANDER at p06.dasd.honeywell.com> wrote: >Jeff Renner wrote: >< I once had enough negative pressure in my ><fermenter (additional O2 absorbtion or cooling) to pull a little chlorine ><water into the beer. Believe me, once is enough! I fermented it out, ><but the chloro-phenolic flavor ruined the beer. >This is why I started using Vodka in my air-locks! It's been working real >well. This is why I have always used water (yes, water) in my airlocks--won't hurt a thing. Also, if you correctly fill an S-shaped airlock, you will have *zero* worries about liquid going in or out. John DeCarlo, MITRE Corporation, McLean, VA--My views are my own Fidonet: 1:109/131 Internet: jdecarlo at mitre.org Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 1994 12:23:02 -0600 From: pmiller at mmm.com (Phil Miller) Subject: Shearing Proteins Erik writes: >I don't rememeber the wording of my post but I wanted to clarify. I think >that most attempts at force carbonation are hurried . In the rush people >agitate the beer which creates a foam in the keg. The proteins in this >foam can be damaged by being stretched in the thin film of the bubble as >they grow. The damage is not limited to shearing of the protein chain, it >can also cause denaturation of the protein's folded structure. Either way, >the accumulation of damaged proteins could decrease the heading potential >of the beer When I was working on my PhD thesis in polymer science, we used to prepare solutions of polystyrene in toluene. When we mixed up the solutions, we would use magnetic stir bars and we would leave the bottles on the mixer overnight. We started with a high molecular weight polymer with a very narrow molecular weight distribution. We were concerned that the action of stirring would stretch/break the polystyrene molecules and goof up our MW distribution so we ran gel permeation chromotography of the polymer before and after stirring. There was no noticable effect. Since we were stirring for a long time, since our molecules were longer than the proteins found in beer (I'm just guessing here, but the PS we used had a molecular weight of 390,000), and since our concentrations of PS were much greater than proteins in beer, I'd have to say that I don't think you get much appreciable protein 'breaking' from shaking your keg. The main chain bond in polystyrene is a C-H bond, same as a protein, right? So I don't think protein molecules are inherently 'weaker' than polystyrene molecules... Phil Miller pmiller at mmm.com Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 1994 10:47:28 -0800 (PST) From: Domenick Venezia <venezia at zgi.com> Subject: Over-Aeration Did someone mention my name? As many of you have heard (repeatedly), about O2 and yeast starters: "By constantly aerating the starter you will be introducing more O2 into solution and thereby forcing the yeast into the Krebs cycle of respiration. You really don't want your yeast into the Krebs cycle because they will use up all the O2 doing respiration when you actually want the O2 to stick around for ergosterol synthesis. Ergosterol? Ergosterol is a cholesterol like steroid that the yeast synthesizes and puts into the cell membrane to counteract the effects of ethanol on the membrane. O2 is necessary for ergosterol synthesis and if it is not available you will get a stuck fermentation because the yeast, being unable to synthesis the antidote, has poisoned itself with ethanol." Remember also that yeast are facultative anaerobes. This means that the anaerobic metabolic pathways are precursors of the aerobic pathways. That is, the products of fermentation are the inputs to respiration. Yeast always ferment, and in the presence of O2 they add a metabolic pathway to the end of fermentation that uses the fermentation products as fuel. Glucose ---(fermentation)---> etOH, CO2^ ---(respiration)---> H2O, CO2^ The '^' means the gas escapes. And remember that yeast reproduce BOTH aerobically and anaerobically. We aerate for ergosterol synthesis NOT for cell count. Now the goals of a yeast starter and primary fermentation are much different, but after a bit of thought I don't think that aerating your primary for 12+ hrs is a very good idea either. Primary fermentation should be just that, "fermentation" not "respiration". As described above as long as your dissolved O2 (dO2) levels are above some threshold the yeast will be breathing (respiring). Breathing yeast are eating your proteins, sugars, and lipids and giving you WATER and CO2. Oops. What we really want is ETHANOL and CO2. By aerating your pitched wort you may be able to produce a well attenuated, low alcohol beer, but some of the things that yeast contribute to a beer's flavor and character (esters, etc.) are only bit players in the dance of enzymes we call fermentation and respiration. I don't know all the details, but I'd wager that the bit players we find after respiration are a very different cast from the bit players we find after fermentation. I'm very curious how BOWEMEISTER's aerated brew turns out. Theory is one thing, but the proof is in the beer. I hope BOWEMEISTER keeps us posted. Tomorrow is brew day! Domenick Venezia ZymoGenetics, Inc. Seattle, WA venezia at zgi.com Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 1994 11:18:32 -0800 (PST) From: Domenick Venezia <venezia at zgi.com> Subject: Sucking Airlocks/Blow-off Many people have mentioned the problem of "sucking airlocks". Contrary to a common misconception this is not some perverse practice, but a common problem that is the result of temperature changes in the headspace of a fermenter before/after the little yeasties are burping CO2. As the air in the headspace cools it contracts and can suck up the liquid from the airlock (3-piece) and deposit it into your beer. I've heard of people using boiled water, vodka, scotch, tequila, iodophor as a defense, but I think the easiest solution is not to completely fill the airlock. If the airlock is filled to only about a 1/4" above the slots in the airlock "floater", then when the solution is sucked up the level falls below the slots and the vacuum is broken. I use a strong antiseptic in the airlock (etOH, 151 Rum, strong iodophor) because this sucking introduces ambient air that could be laden with nasties. However, others have pointed out that only at the bubble/solution interface is the air actually exposed to antiseptic, so its use is largely ineffective. But, unless we are sucking furiously, the amount of air movement is minimal and it may be that any nasties can actually fall out of the air and into the awaiting poison pool, where they deservedly die horrible painful deaths. - ------------ "To blow-off or not to blow-off?", that is the question. Whether tis nobler to suffer the putative harshness and bitterness of outragous kraeusen, or to just blow it off? Personally, I've never noticed any difference in my brew that I could attribute to blow-off. IMHO the normal variability of the brewing process completely swamps any differences attributable to blow-off. Cheers, Domenick Venezia ZymoGenetics, Inc. Seattle, WA venezia at zgi.com Return to table of contents
Date: 29 Nov 1994 11:31:52 U From: "Manning Martin MP" <manning_martin_mp at mcst.ae.ge.com> Subject: Blow-off, Fermentor Geometry Bill Szymczak <wszymcz%ulysses at relay.nswc.navy.mil> wrote: >A few issues ago Al Korzonas commented on my experiment with >blow-off use. >I'm afraid that this was not an ideal experiment. You see, the two >sub-batches have varying fermentor geometries -- the partially full >carboy being similar to a short, squat fermentor. George Fix has >reported that the effect of fermentor geometry can be a significant >factor for some yeast as has de Clerck. And Bill replied: >...If the batches came out differently, then the differences could be >explained by either the use of the blow-off, or the difference in >fermentor geometry, or the difference in fermentation time. Since the >results were the same, either none of these issues had an effect, >or some combination of the three canceled each other >out (which seems unlikely). By the way, both batches had very good >head retention. I would say that this experiment was a good and practical one for Bill and for most of us, as I don't think we have any real choice of fermentor geometry. In this case, you either fill the carboy up enough to cause a blow-off or you don't. That aside, I would even go so far as to conjecture that the minor difference of a few inches in the depth of the fermenting beer is insignificant. Even considering the use of soda kegs and quarter-barrels, which span the likely height and height/diameter's of vessels used by amateurs, it's hard to believe that there could be much effect. Admittedly, the convection currents produced within the various tanks will differ somewhat, and possibly increase or decrease stirring action during the ferment. More important, in my opinion, is that the distance that the flocculating yeast must fall (i.e., time it is in suspension) is not much different; these are all very shallow (by commercial standards) vessels. I'm not familiar with the information Al cites from Fix (enlighten me, somebody), but the references to extreme fermentor geometries in the professional texts are usually concerned with very tall (>20 ft high) vertically-oriented cylindrical tanks as compared to shorter (~10 ft?) cylindrical tanks, cylindrical tanks laid on their sides, and the rather shallow open fermentors used in Europe or like those at Anchor. The vessels used by us amateurs are never any deeper than the shallowest of these. MPM Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 94 15:51:55 EST From: MFOR8178 at URIACC.URI.EDU Subject: Ricks X MAs Ale and 2 litre plastic bottles Finally, last nite I bottled my attempt at Ricks Wicked X MAs ale. I added more cinamon than he requires (2 more sticks) to suit my taste, and it is delicious at this stage My question though is this. I bottled 2 cases, and then I realized I had some left over, and NO MORE BOTTLE S So, I put it into a plastic coke bottle (Sanitized in a bleach bath of course) Will this work? IS the plastic strong enough to hold the pressure, or will I have flat beer. Also, will the taste change significantly? I have it stored in a dark closet in my basement, away from light, so I dont th ink that should be a problem. Im not too worried though (Actually i am enjoying a delicious Honey Cranberry Porter, that is now 4 weeks old and just marvelous.) cause I have 2 cases alrea dy, but I was just wondering what to expect when I open it up. ON a related note... The reason I ran short, is that I had some champagne bottles I was going to use , and when I got my caps out, they would not fit. I know someone mentioned this yesterday or so. What brands of champagne do work? Also, is it possible to get bigger caps that will fit? TIA Mike Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 94 08:34:04 PST From: Steve Armbrust <Steve_Armbrust at ccm.co.intel.com> Subject: Grant's Imperial Stout Clone Text item: Text_1 A few days ago, Joe Clayton asked about a recipe for a Grant's Imperial Stout clone. My mailer couldn't get to his, and perhaps others are interested, so I'll post this here. This is an extract recipe (with specialty grains) that I made with a friend several years ago (we got the recipe somewhere, but I can't remember where). The FG turned out a little high, but it tasted a lot like Grant's. The major problem with this recipe was that the ingredients for five gallons cost more than a five-gallon keg of the original. Grant's Imperial Stout Clone -- recipe for FIVE gallons Two 3.3 lb cans Edme SFX dark unhopped extract Two 4 lb cans Alexanders unhopped extract 3 lbs M&F dark dry extract 1 lb clover honey 1/2 lb chocolate malt 1/2 lb roasted barley 5 oz cascade hops (in boil for 60 minutes) 1 oz bullion hops (dry hopped for 3-4 days) Wyeast 1084 Irish ale yeast Crush the specialty grains and do a partial mash. (We added them to two gallons of cold water, heated just to boiling, and strained.) Add the rest of the water, the extract, honey, and cascade hops and boil for 60 minutes. Cool and pitch yeast. After primary fermentation, rack to secondary and dry hop with the bullion hops. OG 1.075 FG 1.034 Steve Armbrust in Portland, OR Steve_Armbrust at ccm.hf.intel.com Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 94 14:19:48 MST From: "James Giacalone" <JGiacalone at vines.ColoState.EDU> Subject: Gott coolers Hi Rick! I purchased my Gott cooler directly from RUBBERMAID Co.. Call 1-800-362-1000. The 5 Gal. cooler is $48.10 part#(51130WL). The 10 Gal. cooler is $63.49 Part# (51133WL). You can also get large coolers from Mcmaster- Carr. Phone# (404) 346-7000 or Grainger (igloo) Phone# (410 391-9000. Merry Christmas!! Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 94 14:01:08 PST From: raines at radonc.ucla.edu (Maribeth_Raines) Subject: Brown malt, aeration, yeast starters I am looking for a commercial source of brown malt. I know this was discussed about a year ago. and I'm looking for some to brew an original british porter. Sorry but I disagree with the recent wisdom on aeration. I believe it is the Practical Brewer which states that some breweries aerate 12-24 hours (I don't recall off the top of my head) and this is post pitching. There are several things which suggest at least to me, to aerate after pitching. First is that the *maximum* amount of oxygen that can be dissolved in cooled wort is 8 ppm. George Fix was the first to bring this point up and has very convincing data. I have done my own experiments with similar results. If you look at the textbooks, most yeast require 8-12 ppm and some lager yeast require 20 ppm of oxygen. This raises an interesting question. How do you supply more oxygen than you can dissolve? Well I personally believe the answer is to continue to aerate after pitching. If you follow the dissolved oxygen levels after pitching most of the oxygen is rapidly absorbed (most within 30 minutes). I have measured oxygen levels while continuing to aerate and they still went down by 30-40% within 30 minutes of adding the yeast. My idea is that you can make up the deficit in oxygen by allowing the yeast to absorb some oxygen while continuing to add more. I have brewed over 20 batches this way with at least 30 minutes aeration prior to fermentation and at least 30 minutes post pitching. I have gone up to seven hours aeration post pitching and have never had a problem. All of these experiments were done using the BrewTek aeration system which I developed; it is an aquarium pump based system. In general the fermentations are always rapid and complete and I would recommend at least trying aeration post pitching since I believe it helps. Although I do agree that prolonged aeration for 8-12 hours is probably excessive. Someone also was wondering about why a 6-10 fold step up is recommended for starters. Why not add a yeast colony directly to a 1 liter flask? Scientifically there is no really good reason why you cannot do a 20-50 fold step up. Yeast grow logarithmically and a 50-fold dilution is only about 1.5 logs or 1.5 doublings. BUT the observation has been made that diluting your starter more than 10-fold alters the fermentation ability of certain sugars. So in terms of growth it is not a problem, but in terms of quality of fermentation it is. I wrote this up in Brewing Techniques a few issues back. I don't recall the exact order by which certain sugars are metabolized but I believe it is the longer chain more complex sugars which do not get fermented if you underpitch or overdilute your starters. Thus your terminal gravities will be slightly higher. So, it's a trade-off between being practical versus being more consistent. I have done both 50-fold and 5-fold step ups and have not found that big a difference in the outcome. For homebrewers I think it is better to minimize yeast manipulation to one or two step ups and use a quart starter (500 ml minimum) per 5 gallons. This along with good aeration will produce excellent beers. Sorry for the bandwidth. Maribeth Raines raines at radonc.ucla.edu Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 94 18:09:17 EST From: uswlsrap at ibmmail.com Subject: Beer tastings for swiller education - -------------------- Mail Item Text Follows ------------------ To: I1010141--IBMMAIL From: Bob Paolino Research Analyst Subject: Beer tastings for swiller education Ron Dwelle is worrying too much. If you were doing a festival with many beers for people who are already educated about the joys of real beer, then you might need to be concerned about getting suggestions on out-of-town brews and how to "import" them, but for the kind of event described, stick to what is available locally. (GVSU isn't something I'm familiar with, so I don't know your location, but surely there must be 5 micros readily available for the event.) You know beer, right? You know what's good, what's bad, and what's the Best Overmarketed Beer in America<tm>, and to stick to the first in the list (what's good) and avoid the last two (what's bad and BOBIA) :-) Pick five beers that represent a fairly broad range of styles without getting too exotic for the swillers-in-recovery. Do a generic "amber" ale or lager, a reasonably hoppy pale ale, a stout and/or a porter, a real pilsener, a good bock or other beer appropriate for the season of the event (if you're doing it soon, get a nice winter warmer in there, eh?), and whatever else strikes your tastebuds. It's important that you NOT "import" brews for this event, because what good is it to educate people if they can't go out to the package store and buy the beers they discovered they liked? Education: use it or lose it. If you have a local craft brewery/ies, be sure to include one (or more) of them and encourage support of the local brew. If you live someplace where not very much is available, I will say that the Samuel<tm>Adams<tm>beers<tm> do offer a wide range of styles these days and can be useful for illustrative purposes, and it's drinkable beer even if Jim Koch's beer consultant's (his great grandfather, yeah, right) interpretations of some of the styles are kind of wimpy. I do give Koch credit for getting a wide variety of beer styles out to the mass market. I just don't like his borderline (un)ethical methods. I'm not out on a Koch- bashing binge; there are people far far more outspoken than me on that topic, but let me make one more note. I recall reading in Barleycorn Koch's remarks that things like the Miller "Reserve" beers were a contribution in that they are "training wheel" beers from which people can move up to the real thing. Hmmmm.... I put the Koch contract brews in the same category. SamAdams<tm> may well be educating new people for a taste of real beer, but the ones who learn their lessons well will move on to better and more adventurous things. Good luck with the event, you beer evangelist! Now go have a beer, Bob Paolino / Disoriented in Badgerspace /uswlsrap at ibmmail.com Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 1994 18:35:35 -0500 From: CheeseyDog at aol.com Subject: head retention? To the collective wisdom of the homebrewers of the world, I have subscribed to this list for approximately 6 months, have read Papazian's book, and am an enjoyer of good beer. Having established that I am not a total beer idiot, I would like to ask the following question: Why are beers judged according to head retention? If I am drinking a great tasting beer, why should I care whether or not it retains its head? Is it purely an aesthetic consideration? Beers are often *classified* according to color, but not normally judged to be good or bad because of its color. Ostensibly this is because color is only related to taste indirectly (they're both impacted by the same agents), but isn't this true of head retention as well? I'll admit that a little tear of joy comes to my eye when I see the creamy head on a freshly poured pint of Guinness, but by the same token I enjoy Bohemia beer even though there is scarcely a head to it. Waiting to be mocked, Derek B. Odegard cheeseydog at aol.com Return to table of contents
Date: Tue 29 Nov 94 16:44:47-PST From: Cecila Strickland <CID at mathom.xkl.com> Subject: Head Hi, I've had a problem with head creation since moving to the Northwest and wonder if someone might know if the softer water is causing this. Previously, I lived in the land of hard water and did not treat my water. I've noticed several postings from the area that have talked about adding a few additives. While there has been a slight, but measurable taste difference, I find the lack of head consistent throughout all my brews - they remind me of the draft ales I've gotten in England. Good, but flat. I have changed NOTHING in brewing style since moving here. I've tried every conceivable carbonating agent known to wo(man), with no luck. Any ideas out there? Thanks, Cyd - ------- Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 1994 21:11:42 -0500 (CDT) From: "KEVIN FONS Q/T BPR X7814 <KFONS at china.qgraph.com>" <KFONS at china.qgraph.com> Subject: Fullers ESB / Newcastle Brown Ale Recipes? I am looking for mixed extract/grain(malt) recipes for Fullers ESB and Newcastle Brown Ale. Kevin Fons [KFONS at QGRAPH.COM] Return to table of contents
End of HOMEBREW Digest #1592, 11/30/94