HOMEBREW Digest #2329 Wed 29 January 1997

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		Digest Janitor: janitor@ brew.oeonline.com
		Many thanks to the Observer & Eccentric Newspapers of 
		Livonia, Michigan for sponsoring the Homebrew Digest.
				URL: http://www.oeonline.com

  Stout (Paul Ward)
  Crisp Maris Otter/Mashout (korz)
  Whole Leaf Hops in a Hopback (Ken)
  vocab question (Ron_Barbercheck)
  Kitchen Aid Grain Mill Question ("Michael Switzer")
  re Cold Break W/Immersion Chiller, Drilling a Hole (Robert J Haines)
  Cutting Corny dip tubes...how much? (Bill Macher)
  Stainless Steel or Enamel Pot (On.Defence.Number.33)
  Relief valve source: was RE: Keg Conditioning (Bob McCowan)
  RE: Stuck Sparge/Headspace (Cuchulain Libby)
  Gueze Pronunciation (satterfield)
  re: No Head! (Uncanny) ("John Boshier")
  Freshman Digest (Kyle Druey)
  Trappist Ales ("MASSIMO FARAGGI")
  underhopped in Kenya (Russ Kruska)
  Shipping boxes (Ganister Fields Architects)
  The Magnesium Myth Exploded! ("_Paul Sovcik, PharmD")
  Oxycaps/diacetyl rest/skunky Heineken (korz)
  Lambics (wyatt)
  Stove abuse (LaBorde, Ronald)
  Sankey Fermenters (mikehu)
  Mg is bitter/high-maltose corn syrup/sulphate at bottling (korz)
  Cold storage of ale? (Tim.Watkins)
  fancy siphon (Dave Whitman)
  No agitation, immersion chiller question (Tim Martin)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Mon, 27 Jan 1997 15:07:02 -0500 (EST) From: Paul Ward <paulw at doc.state.vt.us> Subject: Stout On Christmas day, my son stoped by the house with a six of beer from the Magic Hat brewery (unsure if this is a true local micro or a contract job, but anyway they're HQ'd in Burlington, VT). He had their stout 'Heart of Darkness'. Excellent! Prior to this my only stout exposure had been to draught Guinness (can you say insipid? Nice head but the wateriest beer I have ever drunk). Anyway, this 'Heart of Darkness' was great, and I now have an urge to brew a stout. I chose one of Papazian's recipes (Dark Sleep Stout), and was forced to adapt. The recipe called for 'John Bull' unhopped extract. My supplier did not have this, so I picked up 'BierKeller' dark unhopped German extract. When I removed the plastic top to the can, there was a packet of 'John Bull' yeast. Are 'John Bull' and 'Bierkeller' made by the same people? Will this make much difference to the final taste (I mean, aren't all extracts pretty much the same)? I chose dark extract rather than light because the supplier was out of black patent malt, and I wanted to make sure I had a dark beer. Should I do anything to make up for the 1/2 pound of black patant that now will not be in the final product? Should I increase the amount of roasted barley or should I just forget about it and know that I won't get that particular flavor component in the final product? In his stout recipes, Papazian says to boil the specialy grains rather than just add them to cold water and remove them as the water comes to boil. Is this wise? Is the tanin extraction part of the flavor profile of a stout? I decided to bite the bullet and do 'the single greatest thing known to improve the quality of homebrew!' I broke down and spent the $4.25 (U.S.) for Wyeast "Irish" ale. So now I've got this super-duper liquid yeast that I'm going to build up into a huge starter to make a great stout. And, of course, I got to thinking, will it really make a difference? I can see where a liquid yeast might make a difference in my pale ales, but will I be able to tell the differnece in a stout with all those rich flavor ellements, or should I have saved the money and just re-hydrated the dried yeast that came with the extract? This is the most expensive batch I will have brewed to date so I'm a little concerned that it also be the best batch I have brewed. Any special 'quirks' I should be aware of with this yeast? T.I.A. Paul paulw at doc.state.vt.us - -- If vegetarians eat vegetables, what of humanitarians? Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 27 Jan 1997 14:38:46 -0600 (CST) From: korz at xnet.com Subject: Crisp Maris Otter/Mashout Nathan asks about Maris Otter malt (note spelling). Maris Otter is a strain of barley (as are Klages, Harrington, and Triumph). Crisp is a malting company. Crisp makes Pale Ale malt from Maris Otter and from other barleys. You can buy Crisp Maris Otter Pale Ale malt and you can buy Crisp Pale Ale malt (presumably made from some other, less well-respected barley, or maybe just mislabled by the distributor or retailer). There are other malsters that use Maris Otter barley too, buy I don't recall which ones they are, off the top of my head. *** Eric writes: >{ > The high initial heat will denature the beta amylase. As the > temperature drops all that you will achieve is slowing down the > surviving alpha amylase. You'll get conversion, but a highly >} > >This *seems* to fly in the face of information Al K. gave me about the >neccesity of the mash out: Paraphrasing, I proposed mashout may be overkill >because perhaps alpha amylase activation temps denatured beta amylase, so in >the cooling sparge collection kettle, niether enzyme would be working, as you >are below alpha temps, and beta amylase had been denatured, which is what >George just said. Al assured me this don't happen (OK, he used better >grammer), that both enzymes are denatured only at the mashout temperature. > >Who's right? Who's wrong? Do I still just don't get it? I know MBINR, >but I'm curious as to what the enzymes are up to. WHOA!!! I'm being misparaphrased!!! I never said that (good or bad grammar)! If you'll search the archives for "korz" and "mashout" you'll see that I posted an article in which I questioned the usefulness of mashout also. Indeed beta amylase would be denatured after a short time (I would say 15 minutes is plenty) at 158F and therefore fermentability would be stabilized at that point. Note also that there is no "below alpha temps" because the conversion simply goes slower (heck, the barley corn will grow into a barley plant in 50-60F soil!) at lower temperatures, but alpha amylase simply does not have that much to do with the fermentability (it converts primarily starch to dextrins, both of which are not fermentable). Note that this is an extreme simplification because beta amylase without alpha amylase will not make a very fermentable wort either -- it relies on the alpha amylase to provide it with dextrins to munch on. Al. Al Korzonas, Palos Hills, IL korz at xnet.com Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 27 Jan 1997 16:43:44 -0500 From: Ken <kbjohns at oscar.peakaccess.net> Subject: Whole Leaf Hops in a Hopback How many ounces of leaf hops do use in a hop back for 5 gals. of pale ale. I typically use 1/2 oz. of cascade pellets for dry hopping and would like to switch to whole leaf in a hop back. E-mail responses would be appreciated Return to table of contents
Date: 27 Jan 97 17:28:25 EST From: Ron_Barbercheck at MB01.CCMAIL.CompuServe.COM Subject: vocab question Can someone please define the term/process FIRST WORT HOPPING. Is this something I probably already do and just don't know the terminology? Or is it something I could be doing to improve my all grain beers? If the answer is too redundant to post on the HBD, then please e-mail me privately. To the person who posted the recipe for the DME and specialty grain 1 gallon Stout, I made it an it was quite tasty. Please post the recipe if you are successful in scaling it up to 5 gallons. Ron Barbercheck Chicago, IL Ron_Barbercheck at mb01.ccmail.compuserve.com Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 27 Jan 1997 17:31:26 -0500 From: "Michael Switzer" <switzer8 at pilot.msu.edu> Subject: Kitchen Aid Grain Mill Question Kitchen Aid makes a Grain Mill attachment for its mixers and I was wondering if anyone has used this? Is it adjustable or does it just make flour out of the grains? How much does it cost? Any other comments would be welcome. Thanks, Michael Switzer - ----------------------------------- switzer at cpp.msu.edu switzer8 at pilot.msu.edu http://pilot.msu.edu/user/switzer8 Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 27 Jan 1997 20:41:21 EST From: bjhaines at juno.com (Robert J Haines) Subject: re Cold Break W/Immersion Chiller, Drilling a Hole Hi all! Dr. Pivo <irv at wireworks.se> recently replied to Stuart's question about the effectiveness of removing cold break with an immersion chiller, saying that it does work, and providing some detail from his (still ongoing) experiments.. I have one (anecdotal) datapoint to add ... Midway through last brewing season I fashioned a chiller, so after a long break from brewing (summer and too much other stuff!) I've been working on my basic techniques and playing with different stuff. A couple of hours ago I racked over the batch that I brewed last Monday; major differences were: - due to a cold snap, this was the first time my immersion chiller got the temp down to where I really wanted it (hit 70f) - this batch was the first time I've used whole leaf hops - I also did exercise a bit more patience than usual in letting the wort settle in the brewpot before siphoning into the primary ... perhaps I waited 20 minutes or a half hour. YES, the chiller really did reduce cold break, especially under the above conditions. I had a little "spooge" stuck to the shoulders of the carboy, but the stuff in the bottom appeared to be almost all yeast. I'm looking forward to the first bottle to see how the difference plays on the tastebuds ... *** Also, I've been following the recent "how to drill a hole in stainless" thread with some interest, but haven't yet seen one technique for keeping the drill bit from "wandering." If you truly don't want to "dimple" the spot for fear of making the steel harder (and thus tougher to drill), just put a layer or two of masking tape on the work to keep the bit from skidding sideways. *** Finally, thanks to the new digest janitor and all those supporting him behind the scenes. HBD is truly a great resource, and I'm very glad that it's back on track. Bob Haines BJHAINES at JUNO.COM (preferred) or BJHAINES at AOL.COM Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 27 Jan 1997 20:57:14 -0500 (EST) From: Bill Macher <macher at mail.lm.com> Subject: Cutting Corny dip tubes...how much? Hello all! I have been kegging and force carbonating. I am still very much a newbie, with about 10 extract batches under my belt, but moving on at a good pace... I noticed that all my batches seem to start clearing very nicely at the end of their life. I suspect that this is because I have been using the corny dip tubes at their original length, and I keep sucking out whatever settles until there is not anything left to settle. Then the last few glasses are really pretty, and I think taste a bit improved as well. Is a half inch the recommended amount to shorten the dip tube? I highly appreciate any help anyone may offer. Bill PS - I only recently realized that TIA is not someone's name! When climbing slowly, with 90 LB of bike and gear Or flying down the other side, sailing through the air There is no question; in MY mind it's clear I am both the turtle, AND the hare! ( macher at telerama.lm.com Pittsburgh, Pa. USA ) Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 27 Jan 1997 20:04:08 -0800 From: On.Defence.Number.33 at emerald.oz.net Subject: Stainless Steel or Enamel Pot Which is better to the wort in, and why? We're off to see the wizard... Brian bderen at oz.net http://www.oz.net/~bderen Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 09:30:34 -0500 From: Bob McCowan <bob.mccowan at bmd.cpii.com> Subject: Relief valve source: was RE: Keg Conditioning Dion says: >Then I attach an adjustble pressure >relief valve on the "gas in" fitting and set it for about 20 psi. What are some good sources for such a valve, and how much do they cost? Any recommendations on ones that work, ones to stay away from? Thanks, Bob - -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Bob McCowan ATG/Receiver-Protector voice: (508)-922-6000 x208 CPI BMD fax: (508)-922-8914 Beverly, MA 01915 e-mail: bob.mccowan at bmd.cpii.com Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 26 Jan 1997 10:01:27 -0600 From: Cuchulain Libby <hogan at connecti.com> Subject: RE: Stuck Sparge/Headspace Hello All, Mike Dowd was asking about stuck sparges with Otter Crisp and while I'm no expert, I just finished my second all-grain, I too noticed my sparge APPEARED to be stuck. I use a 5gal Gott, Listerman's sparge arm, and Phalse bottom, BTW. All I did was blow into the run off hose, thereby clearing the elbow of a husk or two and off it went. My problem is regulating the outflow with a nylon hose clamp- I have a hard time maintaining the 1 or 2 inches of water on top of the bed. Also, lately I've been having a hard time getting 5 gals into the secondary. Are there any problems with a big headspace in the secondary I can anticipate? Cuchulain "eat animals, don't love them" Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 08:14:30 +0000 From: satterfield at gentire.com Subject: Gueze Pronunciation The definitive word on how to pronounce "Gueze" comes from a colleague of mine from Brussels who says that: >The right pronounciation is 'goez'. Tom Satterfield (employed by a German Company with plants in Belgium) Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 97 8:16:11 -0600 From: "John Boshier" <john.boshier at telops.gte.com> Subject: re: No Head! (Uncanny) Denis Barsalo Writes: <snip> >Could these dark beers been "stipped" of too much of their head >forming proteins? >Those of you who have had success brewing Brown Ales, Porters and >Stouts, do you usually use more sugar to carbonate those beers? I brew mainly porters, brown ales and IPA's. I have not had any particular carbonation problem with the porters and browns, and I use the same procedure for all three styles. In fact, I have an IPA that has been in bottles for nearly 8 weeks and is still WAY under-carbonated. Go figure. So from my experience, I don't think the darker beers have any less potential for carbonation than others, although they can take a little longer to condition. Not more than a week or two. I would be interested in any suggestions on how to recover my IPA which is still flat after 8 weeks. Last week I turned the bottles to stir up the yeast. Not much effect yet. It has not been overly cold (not less than 68 degrees)where I store the bottles. See ya. JB Grapevine, TX Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 07:36:29 -0800 From: Kyle Druey <kdldmd at lightspeed.net> Subject: Freshman Digest The Bulletin Board at the Brewery is probably the closest thing to a Freshamn Digest. It can be found at http://alpha.rollanet.org/ Return to table of contents
Date: 28 Jan 1997 14:39:46 -0000 From: "MASSIMO FARAGGI" <maxfarag at hotmail.com> Subject: Trappist Ales Hi all! Just a point about Belgian Trappist Ales. As far as I know, Westvleteren WAS contract brewed by another brewery, (S.Bernardus) under the label St. Sixtus, while having its own very little production. Now it seems that this partnership has splitted, the outside brewery is selling its beers under the St. Bernardus label, and the monks are selling their own true "Trappist" production. Now I see that in some specialized bars in Italy and France you can find the S.Sixtus/Bernardus beers under the "Trappist" selection, but you usually get the secular ("Abbey" not "Trappist") products (very good BTW) and not the true Westvleteren beers. These seem very difficult to find and I could never taste them. The production is quite small (4000 hl. according to P.Crombecq). You can get many informations about belgian beers at P.Crombecq's http://www.dma.be/p/bier/beer.htm I have also found this about Trappist Breweries if you can read German: http://www.wu-wien.ac.at/usr/absatz/salzberg/trappe/trappe.html About Abbey/Trappist ale yeasts: I found some time ago a post/article which seemed to me interesting enough to include here but could not find it any more. It was about a Belgian Beer Festival or Competion where many homebrewers used any possible yeast from belgian bottle - conditioned beers, with a statistic about how many times a yeast was used, its average score and % of good brews ... I couldn't find it in HBD archives or the UK digest, maybe it was in the BREWERY or SKOTRATS Bull. Boards or somewhere in the WEB..? If anyone could find it, please inform me. Cheers Massimo Faraggi GENOVA - ITALY maxfarag at hotmail.com - --------------------------------------------------------- Get Your *Web-Based* Free Email at http://www.hotmail.com - --------------------------------------------------------- Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 16:51:00 -0800 (PST) From: Russ Kruska <R.KRUSKA at CGNET.COM> Subject: underhopped in Kenya Help !! Just brewed a 9 gallon batch of pale ale and as I usually hop based on previous batches, I accidentally hopped as if the batch was 5 gallons (30 ibu's for 5 gallons in this case). I have no access to hop oil, only pellets and whole hops. Can I boil a bitter hop tea (H20 only ??) ?? Any recommendations would be greatly appreciated. (the brew is actively fermenting)... Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 10:42:03 -0600 From: Ganister Fields Architects <gfarch at tiac.net> Subject: Shipping boxes I was wondering if anyone has a source for shipping boxes not unlike the ones used by "Beer Across America" for shipping homebrew beer. The type that I am familiar with hold 12 bottles separated with double-width corrugated egg crate sandwiched between two sheets of 3/4" EPS. I have also heard of a shipping box made entirely of EPS with 12 holes to fit the bottles. I guess this would be inserted in a shipping rated corrugated box. Any info. would be appreciated. Private email okay but a posting may be helpful to others. TIA, Will Fields Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 97 10:44:43 CST From: "_Paul Sovcik, PharmD" <U18183 at UICVM.UIC.EDU> Subject: The Magnesium Myth Exploded! Jeff Renner writes: >How much Mg is too much here? Brewers are going to keep it to wellunder >100ppm, I'd think. Foster (_Pale Ale_) gives 50-60ppm for Burton water. >That's hardly "a dose of salts." Surely you'd have a lot of water drinking >folks in Burton-on-Trent with the trots if that level were a problem. I >suspect it would take many 100s if not 1000 ppm Mg for GI effects. Any >pharmacists care to address this? Sure. Most Magnesium solutions used as laxatives use about 80-120 mEq of Magnesium, which calculates to about 1920 to 2880 mg of magnesium, if I remember how to do my calculations. 80mEq is considered to be the minimum effective dose. Therefore, at a concentration of 100mg/L (100ppm), you would need to drink about 20-30 beers to get a significant laxative effect, and even then, the effectiveness of magnesium is probably concentration dependent since it works as an osmotic diuretic. Plus, laxative effects are probably the least of your problems after 30 beers. So - hopefully, this will put the "magnesium in brewing salts might cause diarrhea" recurrent thread to rest. Your resident homebrewing pharmacist, -Paul - ------------------- Paul Sovcik University of Illinois College of Pharmacy Chicago, IL Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 11:17:37 -0600 (CST) From: korz at xnet.com Subject: Oxycaps/diacetyl rest/skunky Heineken John writes: >What is the straight scoop on Oxycaps? By what mechanism do they work? >Are they an O2 barrier or an O2 absorber? I have heard that they >contain ascorbic acid and become active when wet. If so, how should one >sanitize them to keep them from just absorbing atmospheric O2 before >they go on the bottle? Do the bottles need to be inverted for a while >to bring the beer into contact with the cap? > >And more importantly, are they really useful for bottle conditioned >beer, as I anticipate that the live yeast will use most of the O2 in >the bottle, anyhow? Has anyone done a taste comparison with bottle >conditioned beer (filled 1/4" from the rim)? I don't know about "Oxycaps" per se, but Zapata's PureSeal(tm) caps (formerly known as "Smartcaps") are available in "barrier" and "absorber" versions. The "absorber" PureSeal caps say "PureSeal(tm) 'A' " on the side of the cap and are an oxygen barrier in addition to having oxygen absorption properities. I've never seen a PureSeal barrier-only cap, so I don't know if it says "B" or nothing at all. PureSeal caps work by using sulfites, not ascorbic acid. I think the ascorbic acid story may have been created in the imagination of a HB retailer (many of whom are seriously deficient in brewing and scientific knowledge!). As for whether they work, I keep referring to a Chicago Beer Society (1996 AHA Homebrew Club of the Year) experiment in which they bottled half of a batch with regular caps and half with Smartcaps. The Smartcap half kept their hop aroma longer than the regular cap half. I have also heard that you need not invert the bottles or anything -- that moisture in the headspace is enough to activate them. Also, since I'm on the subject, you should never boil these caps or use oxygen-based sanitizers on them (like B-Brite or One-Step) -- it will ruin their absorbing capabilities. I spoke with the lead engineer at Zapata and he said to sanitize using either 200 ppm bleach or iodophor for a short soak and quick rinse in cold water. They work slowly, but you don't want to waste their properties anyway, so cap shortly after sanitizing. *** Dave writes: >AlK says about my comments on what happens in a diacetyl rest: > > As for the diacetyl rest, it's primary purpose is to help the yeast re- >> absorb diactyl faster than if you simply went from fermentation at 50F >> to lagering at 40F.<<<<< The diacetyl rest has *nothing* to do with >carbonation, >> purging undesirable volatiles, dissolved oxygen>>>> (what dissolved oxygen -- >> you simply raise the the temperature of the beer -- no transfer is implied >> or needed in the diacetyl rest) and the only compound other than diacetyl >> that I could imagine would be re-absorbed might be acetaldehyde. The > >M&BS says 2nd ed vol2 p 692: > > ...."diacetyl rest". This period of a few days at 14-16 C (57-61F) encourages >the oxidative decaboxylation of alpha acetohydroxy acids to vicinal >diketone*s*, >followed by the reduction to the corresponding diols. (Chapter 17). >***Essentially it involves intense yeast activity to *carbonate the beer*, >*purge undesirable volatiles* , *reduce *many* compounds chemically* (hence >the >trade name "redox" for one process) and *take up all the dissolved oxygen.**** > >The emphases <<< >>>, * * and *** *** are mine and not Al's or M&BS'. I checked MBS to see if perhaps there was a transcription error first or perhaps some additional text that would clarify the discrepency, but Dave copied it right. I'm afraid that MBS is wrong here, primarily in terminology. Dave and MBS are right that all these things do take place in the secondary, but MBS is wrong in ascribing the title of "diacetyl rest" to this stage. Diactyl rest is a relatively modern method for shortening the required lagering time. If you simply ferment at 50F and then lager at 40 or 35F, you need at least two months and in many cases more (depending on yeast strain and OG) for lagering to reduce the diacetyl and other undesirable compounds like acetaldehyde. The diacetyl rest is the name given to a short (several days) rest given to the beer at a higher temperature (high 50's F to mid 60's F) which helps the yeast to reabsorb the diacetyl it created during the primary ferment. At colder temps, this can take months. After the diacetyl rest, the beer is cooled slowly back to lagering temperatures. MBS's text is very misleading in lumping all of these actions together. During secondary fermentation often undesribale volatiles are indeed purged (which implies the fermenter is open to the atmosphere, possibly via an airlock) and often carbonation is created (which implies a sealed fermenter, possibly using a device which limits pressure). I would like to point out again that these processes are *not* tied to this raising of temperature called the "diacetyl rest." They can all take place at lagering temperatures, albeit more slowly. Also, I completely forgot the other common vicinal diketone (which MBS doesn't even mention by name, incidentally): 2,3-pentane-dione. I also forgot that yeast will reduce hydrogen sulphide in the beer (to sulphate, according to MBS, or was it The Practical Brewer). Speaking of The Practical Brewer, a much more thorough coverage of this subject is described on pages 243 to 249. They do not mention the term "diacetyl rest" but rather refer to it as the "Modern Storage Process" (pp.248-249). As for the "dissolved oxygen" I was complaining about, TPB spells it out more clearly, by saying that this rest helps the yeast to absorb any dissolved oxygen that *may* have been introduced during transfer of the beer from the primary fermenter. Again, since transfer of beer is *not* necessarily part of the diacetyl rest, that was the basis of my contention. If you re-read my post above, I was very clear about this. *** Dave writes: >Hal Davis says: > >> I guess I don't understand why Heineken in green bottles is so consistently >> skunked. > >I remember reading somewhere, sometime,( can't guarantee the validity) that >Heinehen is not actually skunked (in the light sensitive way) but that it is a >property of the hops themselves. Any confirmation or denials? No, skunking is most commonly due to the beer being light-struck. I've read that the same compound (prenyl mercaptan) can be formed from isohumulone by heat, which is maybe what you are thinking of? As for sealed cases and dark trucks... yes... all those protect the beer from skunking and it's why I always take a sixpack from a sealed case at the store, but it only takes a few hours under fluorescent lights (or a few minutes under sunlight!) to skunk the beer. Last night, I had a Pilsner Urquell which I bought from a sealed case: no skunkiness! Green bottles protect the beer less than brown bottles. If you buy a Heineken in Europe, it comes in brown glass. Indeed the marketing departments have far more influence than the production departments. Al. Al Korzonas, Palos Hills, IL korz at xnet.com Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 97 09:25:52 pst From: wyatt at ccmail.Latitude.COM Subject: Lambics John Heubel wrote: If you're into Lambics; Mort Subite, Belle-Vue and Timmermans are good choices. Try to find Mort Subite Cassis Lambic for a real treat. Might be a good way at getting an authentic Bruxelles yeast culture anyway. Enjoy! heubs I wouldn't recomend any of the above for culturing. I am not sure about Timmermans, but I know for sure that the rest are pasturized. A good rule of thumb about lambics is that if they are sweet they have to be pasturized and sweetened. Lambics ferment out very dry due to the bacteria and wild yeast used to ferment them. Also the above are NOT good examples of authentic lambics and are designed to expand the lambic market to include people that don't actually like the real thing. Personally I don't like the sweet ones except on rare occasions, sometimes I get a craving for the peach, which isn't a good candidate for real lambic as the flavor doesn't hold up to aging very well but I really don't think of it as lambic either, more like alcoholic soda pop. With the trappist ales, Many different yeasts are used and many of them employ a different yeast for bottling, sometimes several, so unless you are good at plating them out you may have a problem. Even if you are, a bit of patience is required to make sure you get the ferment yeast as it is the oldest and probably least viable one in the bottle. Cheers and good luck. Wyatt Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 11:37:14 -0600 From: rlabor at lsumc.edu (LaBorde, Ronald) Subject: Stove abuse >I don't use the wire hanger method but on that works very well. I had some >ceramic bathroom tiles leftover (4 1/4" square x 3/16 thick). Cut some of >them apart so they'd fit better on top of the stove. I make a stack three >tiles thick and place three piles of them spaced evenly around the burner >plate. This keeps my brewpot approx 1/8" above the heating elements and >prevents overheating the stove, scorching and enables a cover-off, >full-rolling boil since the whole element glows bright red. For sale, one electric stove, like new condition except for burnt holes in the burners. Must sell, will sacrifice, cheap! :>))) Happy Brewing Ron Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 97 10:00:41 PST From: mikehu at lmc.com Subject: Sankey Fermenters Greetings - I've had several questions over the last couple of days concerning the use of Sankey kegs for large fermenters, so I decided to post a summary. Here's some things that I've learned while doing this: Removing down-tube - Remove ALL pressure from the keg by pushing down on the spring-loaded ball valve. (VERY important!) Pry out the snap-ring that goes around the inside of the bung with a sharp, pointed tool. I have used a nail and some pliers to do this in the past. Lift up, rotate slightly, then pull out the down-tube. To make it easier to get the snap ring in and out, I cut it in half with a pair of dikes (wire-cutting pliers). After cutting it in half, I ended up with two rings, each of which goes almost all the way around the inside of the bung. Modifying down-tube - I cut 1.5" off of the bottom of the down-tube, so that when racking to a secondary or serving vessel, the yeast sediment is left behind in the keg. 1.5" is just a starting point for the cut. I still get a little yeast in my secondarys, but not much. You may want to start at 1.5" and cut more off if you get too much sediment in your secondarys. Racking out of fermenter - Sanitize and insert the modified down-tube, insert a snap-ring, then tap with a Sankey tap. I use a 5 foot long, 1/2" hose for the output, attached to the Sankey tap. Pressurize to ~8 psi, and let it rip. (I use glass carboys for my secondarys, purged with CO2 prior to filling.) It's totaly hands-free. Air-lock & blow-off tube - I have found that size 11 rubber stoppers fit perfectly in the bung. I got two of them, one is solid (used for completely sealing the fermenter), the other has a small hole in the center that will hold an air-lock. I also got a cork stopper the same size, that I drilled out to accept a 1" blow-off tube. (The cork was easier to drill than rubber) Capacity of fermenter - I usually get around 14 gallons of usable space in one of these. I don't fill it all the way up due to the blow-off that will occur. These are custom made for the brewer that is using converted kegs to brew in, since you will probably only get around 14 gallons of wort out of your boil kettle anyway. I racked to three carboys last night from one of these, and filled all three of them to the shoulder. Cleaning the fermenter - Believe it or not, I actually use bleach to clean mine. I've heard that bleach will corrode SS, but I have not seen any evidence of this in my fermenter. I check on a regular basis, but have not been able to detect any pitting or corrosion. I don't make the bleach solution too strong, and refrain from soaking it for extended periods of time. Hot water works great too. I've filled mine up half-way with water, and boiled it on my propane burner. Never had a infection. - -- Have Fun Mike H. Portland, Or Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 12:02:58 -0600 (CST) From: korz at xnet.com Subject: Mg is bitter/high-maltose corn syrup/sulphate at bottling Bill writes: >Al K said: >>>>Yes, the water would be harder after these additions, but it's the >sulphate that accentuates the bitterness and not the Ca or Mg. ><<< > >M&BS state that MgSO4 is bitter in and of itself, couldn't be the Mg could >it? and Dave writes: >The other day, I suggested to an HBDer that increasing the hardness of his >water >and specifically adding calcium and magnesium sulfate to his beer might increase >his friends' perception of what they call "bitterness". > >AlK commented that it wasn't the cations of calcium or magnesium but rather >just >the sulfate that was the active ingredient. I intended to respond but forgot >until I saw the following comment by John Pyles, a salt maker: > >> Some marketers put out a low grade salt (not washed well) or add magnesium >> to >> make a "sea" salt. Most producers do their best to remove any **magnesium** >> because it tends to make the salt taste **bitter.** > >** emphasis is mine > >Also, on p 844 M&BS 2nd ed vol 2: > >"...Bitter(1) is evoked by hydrophobic amino acids and alkaloids at the front >of >the tongue, while Bitter(2) is produced by magnesium sulfate, phenolics,and >presumably iso-alpha-acids at the rear of the tongue." > >Magnesium sulfate is used as a standard as one of the substances to evoke >bitterness in tasters. Its taste threshold is 4.6X10^ -3 M or 5.54 X10^ -2%. op >cit p848. Rather than salty, magnesium sulfate only tastes bitter op cit p 849. > >Perhaps you recall my story some months ago which related how one of my >British >friends on the way home from a youthfully exhuberant drinking session in a pub >suffered the effects of high levels of Magnesium Sulfate ( perhaps to reduce >the >cost of the hops or non-availability) in beer produced during the second >world >war. AlK is correct, too much magnesium sulfate and your beer will "go >through >you like a dose of salts". And you thought Epsom Salts was only good to bathe >your feet in . Read the box. I do not contest the fact that magnesium sulphate is bitter, but the fact is that the increase in bitterness in the beer *cannot* be accounted for simply by the bitterness of the MgSO4. Just to be sure, I took a gram of MgSO4.7H2O and mixed it well into a liter of water. This will give 98.64 ppm of Mg++ and 389.58 ppm of SO4-- (in addition to any Mg++ and SO4-- already in my water which is less than 15ppm of Mg++ and less than 25ppm SO4--). Bottom line: it was *not* noticeably more bitter than plain tapwater. Let's recall that 1 gram per liter is a lot more than you would normally add to any beer (even Burton-upon-Trent water is only 45-65ppm of Mg++). That's like a teaspoon in a 5-gallon batch! Oh, and incidentally, that tongue map that has been printed in every encyclopedia in the US and many brewing books including Noonan and referred to in MBS is incorrect and a based upon a mis-translation of some German research done decades ago. Finally, let's do a reality check on our posts before we jump all over Al, eh? *** Dave in NH writes: >I have a brew that I am working on and its flavor leaves >much to be desired right now. In its latest incarnation, >I have been told that there is a flavor reminiscent of >plastic model cement. That would be most likely due to high fermentation temperatures. Some yeasts are more prone to making this ester (I forget its name, ethyl acetate perhaps?) than others, so if you can't lower the fermentation temp, try a different yeast strain. *** Trevor writes: >This christmas past I recieved a Munton & Fison Blonde kit and being >anxious to get it started (as all my carboys were empty, and the beer >supply was getting low) I went out to get some DME from my local brew >shop, unfortunately it was closed till after new years, I went to >anither place and to make a long story short the owner convinced me >to buy 3 lbs of high maltose syrup instead of DME. > >I just tasted my first bottle last night (a bit premature, but as I >said the supply was getting low) and the initial taste was pretty >fair but the aftertaste left a lot to be desired. It's hard to >describe but it felt as if it left a coating on the roof of your >mouth, and a real dry aftertaste. Don't blame the high-maltose syrup. The store owner was wrong in subsituting high-maltose corn syrup for DME. DME contains protein and consiterably more unfermentables (as dexrins) than high-maltose corn syrup. It would be correct to subsitute this stuff for a recipe that called for corn sugar or sucrose -- the yeast perform more "normally" in a maltose environment than a high glucose or sucrose environment. The coating of your mouth sounds like perhaps excessive flavour hops (last 15-20 minutes of the boil) and the dry aftertaste sounds like high sulphate water (or lots of gypsum or Burton Water Salts added). *** There was a question a few days ago as to whether you can increase bitterness by adding gypsum at bottling time. Well, to test this concept, I dissolved 0.125 grams of gypsum in 125 ml of Pilsner Urquell (known for its low-sulphate water) and compared it double blind (no, I didn't do it deaf this time). This would be equivalent to about 560 ppm of sulphate. The bottom line: the sulphate PU was slightly more bitter and had a definite *lingering* bitterness that the base PU did not have. It was not a striking a difference as I would have expected, so I do believe that perhaps some reaction did need to take place. As to whether it needed to take place in the boil (as AJ suggested) or whether it would take place at cellar temperatures given enough time, I don't know, but the fact that there was some change in bitterness implies that we should investigate further. Al. Al "Seat-of-the-Pants Science(tm)" Korzonas Palos Hills, IL korz at xnet.com Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 97 15:51:26 EST From: Tim.Watkins at analog.com Subject: Cold storage of ale? Does anybody out there see any problem with using a cold secondary fermentation of an ale (to aid in clearing)? I normally primary ferment for 4 days, then rack to secondary and leave it there for 7 to 10 days (until finished, and cleared.) I would like to do a primary for 4 days, then about 3 days in the secondary at normal temp (65F) and then a further 3 or 4 days at 40F. Would this cause any problems that I am unaware of? Would this have any positive effect that it would be worth the bother? thanks in advance, Tim - ----------------------- Tim Watkins Applications Engineer Analog Devices, Inc. (617) 937-1428 Tim.Watkins at analog.com Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 16:17:14 -0500 From: Dave Whitman <dwhitman at rohmhaas.com> Subject: fancy siphon In HBD#2328, smurman asks: >I've been thinking about putting together a new racking cane for >transfering from my brew pot to the primary. I saw an article at >Michael Jackson's web site (great site BTW) that describes a >siphon/filter that encircles the outside bottom of the brew pot, and >has a number of holes drilled in it >(http://www.beerhunter.com/archive/index.html Issue 25). > >Has anyone tried this? My main concern is clogging. The basic idea >is to whirlpool so the grit goes to the middle, then siphon from the >edges, but there's a big difference between theory and practice. I built something very similar to this, and it worked like a charm. Some tips: Make the openings only on the BOTTOM of the copper loop. This delays breaking the siphon so that you can get the last traces of wort. Try using slots instead of holes. My initial design had little holes, but it was slow and tended to clog. I used a hacksaw to cut slots about 1/4 through the tube (on the bottom) and it works much better. Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 16:37:02 -0500 From: Tim Martin <TimM at southwest.cc.nc.us> Subject: No agitation, immersion chiller question Hey Neighbors, With all the recent talk about "planispiral", no agitation, no stir, immersion chillers I naturally began to feel inadequate and no longer comfortable with my homemade one. So to relieve my anxiety I began bending my 50 ft. of copper tubing chiller from its original shape to make it look more like a beehive. Not knowing what a planispiral is supposed to look like I still felt good about the new form my chiller had taken. Come brew day I suspended my chiller just below the surface of the wort and let the cold water flow. After an elapsed time I run my hand up and down the outside of my kettle and to my amazement the bottom began to get cold and as time pasted more of the wort began to cool with the surface of the wort remaining very warm. I thought this was pretty cool, just the way you guys described it. When I pulled my 6 inch floating thermometer from the wort and started taking different measurements is when I started to doubt the process. The problem I didn't consider with the no agitation was the stratification of the temperature throughout the wort. The surface was 80df, the middle 70df and the bottom, well I couldn't check with a 6 inch thermometer so I guessed it to be in the low 60's. With my old method of stirring as I cool I could always stop when I reached my pitching temperature but with this I had to make an educated guess as to what the temp. would be when I drained all this wort into my fermentor. I never did know what my final temp. was after I racked to the carboy but the fermentation seemed to go well but I was wanting to pitch my yeast at the same or near the temp. of my starter. Question??? How do you no agitation no stir types deal with this problem or do you even consider it a problem? Thanks, Tim Martin Cullowhee, NC Return to table of contents