HOMEBREW Digest #2384 Thu 27 March 1997

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  re: Decoction consensus ... (Steve Alexander)
  Decoc redux (Charles Rich)
  re:Square Vs. Round Tuns (Christopher Niehaus)
  Rims operation ("Norman Brewer")
  What ARE these chemicals? (jim_anderson)
  Decoction Mashing ( STEVE   GARRETT)
  Water additives ("Layne")
  HCl/Acknowlegements (A. J. deLange)
  all grain newbie (Joe Rotella)
  Gasoline ("David R. Burley")
  Homebrew Digest #2383 (March 26, (eric fouch)
  Stalled fermentation (Tim Plummer)
  A post-counter flow chiller hop back (Mike Spinelli)
  Re: Decoction Thread (Rob Kienle)
  SPAM / Nut Brown (smurman)
  Re: Decoction Mashing Question (LaBorde, Ronald)
  1997 AHA National Homebrew Competition ("Brian M. Rezac")
  Re: Wyeast 1275 Thames Valley (Alex Santic)
  spam/gasoline-like bitterness/headless wheat beer/decoction stuff (korz)
  bad beer ("Raymond Estrella")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Tue, 25 Mar 1997 16:25:22 -0500 From: Steve Alexander <stevea at clv.mcd.mot.com> Subject: re: Decoction consensus ... Dr. Pivo writes re decoction ... >Charles Burns had a collection of consensus opinions regarding a single >decoction. [....] >> At least 5 different commentors have stated 135F to 140F is a good temp= ... >>Noonan assumes undermodifed malts. He later asserts that for more >>modern malts (why does he write about old stuff in the first place) >>a temp of 126-149F for the first rest but >... I think the numbers presented by Greg Noonan are not at all >unreasonable, despite the fact that they are lower than other >suggestions you have received. His numbers lie within traditional >proteolytic ranges [...] Unfortunately the "traditional" less-modified malts that required the "traditional" decoction mash regime described by Noonan no longer exist in the HB market (except for those HBers who also malt their own grain). The use of raw grain adjunct might be another justification for such methods and rests. I have a recently confirmed a report of Durst(German) Pilsen malt with a Kolbach index (STN ratio) of 42.9, 46.6 for their Vienna, and 45.7 for their wheat malt (tho' I have also read of concerns over the accuracy of these numbers). This is higher than previous figures from just a few years ago. I have an older report on DeWolf-Cosyns (Belgium) lager/pilsner malt with an even higher Kolbach. These modification figures are high enough to be compared to english pale-ale malt !! Is any pilsner malt currently available to HBers with an STN ratio or Kolbach at or below 40 ? Does anyone have access to recent analysis of Ireks of Weyermann pilsner malts or an independent analysis of the above malts ? Please post or email if you can identify such info. Since the less-well modified european lager malts seem to have largely disappeared in both the HB and commercial world, so has the justification for a low temp peptidase rest. AlK's previous post on the rest temperatures describes the situation quite accurately IMO. Note that I still prefer euro-lager malts over US 2-row pales for many applications because of it's lower protein content, generally more interesting flavor profile, and (yes) lower STN ratio. >It is repeatedly presented in the homebrew literature, that the >decoction gives you a "maltier" taste that you just can't get any other >way. I guess if you say something often enough it must be true! You'll >have to decide for yourself if you think that that is true. I agree. There are flavor difference between a decocted and non-decocted beer, but they are probably more related to phenols and early formation of hot break than melanoidins IMO. And more of a secondary than a primary factor in flavor. Pale lager beers may gain a large portion of their color from decoction, but it is incorrect to assume that a comparable melanoidin flavor enhancement is due to the decoction. Melanoidin formation is largely the maltsters/kilners work, and a pound of munich malt is worth far more than a decoction in terms of melanoidin flavors IMO. >One sort of general "clue" is that ALL the major lager breweries, no >matter how unmalty tasting their product, decoct... Michael Jackson has reported in several places including his coffee-table books, that decoction is becoming increasingly rare even in Germany. The 'major label' German beers are reportedly infusion or step mashed. The trend started after WWII, and was accelerated by rapidly rising energy costs during the 1970s. I believe there was a note on this in a recent Zymurgy. This trend is even alluded to in M&BS which was published in the mid-1970s. This also explains why even continental maltsters are producing much more highly modified malts. > ...On the other hand, the British as a general rule don't--I've >always considered the hallmark of a good bitter, its malty taste--The >truth seems to be wandering about somewhere out there, but is very >difficult to get hold of. At any rate, there are I think that the issue of malty flavors, what is a malty flavor, and where they come from needs more discussion. >>I've had recommendations that say pull from 1/3 to 1/2 for the >>decoction on one end to pull 90% (virtually all) the grain for the ... >but I think removing 80-90% of your viable enzymes is really "pushing >it", [...] --or have I missunderstood your description? A misunderstanding. I've suggested and personally pull virtually all of the *grist* (less than half of the mash) for a single decoction. This occurs after some sort of dough-in or other rest that permits hydrolysis of the enzymes. The enzymes in solution are largely left behind in the mash liquid. The proof of this is that my saccharification after decoction is almost as fast as an infusion mash. It's probably worth noting at this point that the important brewing enzymes are all part of the water soluable or albumin portion of the mash protein. Also that the beta-amylase is concentrated in the allurone layer(sub husk) and the outer portion of the endosperm. Alpha-amylase is formed in the embryo and concentrated near the embryo/endosperm barrier tissues. Both have a great opportunity to soluablibize in even moderately crushed malt. >If you find out why each target temperature is chosen, I'm sure you >can create your own "best beer", even if it isn't the way someone >else does it. It's just good to understand the traditional rational, >if you want to adjust your flavour profile. I totally agree. But it's not possible to undertstand the traditional extensive decoction schedules without also inderstanding the malts that were available when the method 'evolved' - and how they differ from modern malts. >... I know I have a problem with this language, and have been >GREVIOUSLY misunderstood before .. Any language 'problem' isn't very apparent Dr.Pivo. I hope I haven't misunderstood you, and that you will consider posting more often. Steve Alexander Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Mar 1997 13:34:34 -0800 From: Charles Rich <CharlesR at saros.com> Subject: Decoc redux Thanks to Al Korzonas for his comments. re: >>This is partly right. There are two groups of proteolytic enzymes at >>work in the "protein rest" range which is about 112 or 113F to about (Partly??) Actually, you've gone deeper into explaining the protreolytic process. In offering a practical method I hadn't intended to go too far into the "whys" of the protein rest but your amplification is good, and you're partly right too. We both neglected to say that the proteinase enzymes, the ones that reduce high molecular weight proteins to medium molecular weight (MMWP, desired), are active throughout the whole proteolytic range 104-140F (40-60C) while pepdidases (the nibblers) are only active from roughly 112-122F (45-50C). In practice they're rarely needed for amino acid development as there is already a very adequate store of free amino acids in modern malts. I rest at 135F (43C) to get above the peptidase range in order to preserve and develop my store of medium weight proteins (for body and head) and yet still keep away from beta-amylase activity, since during a decoction I may wait here a while. Note that there can still be significant sugar conversion if left here for more than an hour to ninety minutes. 132F (41C) may be better choice for a "parking" temperature just to minimize this. I agree that the commonly used, compromise protein rest temperature at 120-125F (50-52C) is ill-chosen because you unnecessarily degrade MMWP. Jeff Irvine (Dr. Pivo) has a great discussion (tirade?) about beer proteins on his website but I just wasted 20 minutes here trying to find it again. Jeff? I recently judged English Bitters, all three AHA categories, and nearly all the entries lacked body, sad. Yes, this should go into an FAQ. People, don't neglect your proteins. On a slightly different topic: I hope it was clear that in describing my decoc process, I do not depend on the return of the boiling decoc to pull me to my next stop. I chill it back to about the target rest temp so when added back I only need to apply a little heat to get my temp exactly. I don't want to risk overshooting my target. Since I don't rely on it for step changes I'm at liberty to pull the largest fraction practicable and ignore thermal mass. Note too that an initial rest is important so that the enzymes have a chance to develop and dissolve into the liquid left behind. Cheers Charles Rich (Seattle, USA) Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Mar 1997 14:37:21 -0800 From: Christopher Niehaus <critters at cosmoslink.net> Subject: re:Square Vs. Round Tuns John Sullivan writes: <You will have to find a way to provide a good seal for the CPVC pipe that extends <through the wall of your cooler. I found that using vinyl tubing (i.e., <same thing as racking hose)works well. You will want tubing that is a <bit larger than the hole in the wall and that allows for a tight fit of <the CPVC pipe inside the tubing. I found that I had to heat the tubing <and then jam the pipe into it. Whatever method you choose, just ensure <that you have a tight seal. Hi all, FWIW, I use a 34qt rectangular Gott cooler for my mash/lauter tun with a copper pipe manifold in the bottom. I took out the drain valve thingy and installed a brass close nipple in the hole left by the drain thingy. On both ends of the nipple I screwed on a copper female(?) threaded to sweat fitting using an o-ring between the fitting and the wall of the cooler to prevent leaks. Inside the mash/lauter tun I run vinyl tubing to my manifold and outside the mash/lauter tun I sweated(sweat, sweater, sweated?) a piece of copper pipe and a valve. It works for me and no leaks. Save the old drain valve thingy if you might need to use the cooler later. I also use this for my hot liquor tank/cooler. Any comments on why this should not work? ;^) (sorry I am NOT an ASCII artist!!!) Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 26 Mar 97 01:56:45 UT From: "Norman Brewer" <NLBREWE at msn.com> Subject: Rims operation I've brewed about 15 batches with my RIMS system in the last year. My operation pretty much agrees with the other posts here. Two other observations are: 1) Don't stir the mash while the pump is circulating wort. If you do, you will gradually plug up the holes in your screen or manifold as husk particles are moved aside and something that will fill the holes takes their place. If you want to stir, then stop the pump (and heater) first, stir, and then restart circulation. 2) I use a teel 1P677A magnetically coupled pump. It has an induction motor and you cannot regulate the speed with a simple triac speed controller. I throttle the flow with a ball valve in the outlet which works fine. Actually, the work done by the motor is less (and current flow is reduced) when there is no liquid circulating. But, I ruined a pump impeller and housing by letting the pump go dry during sparging. The shaft that supports the impeller in this pump is plastic, as is most of the impeller, and the two seized up and self-destructed with no liquid in the pump. Fortunately, I was able to get replacement parts for the pump from Grainger. However, for a few dollars more you can get a pump with a titanium shaft, which probably would withstand this abuse better. I'm adding an interlock to my Rims controller to shut off the pump if the discharge pressure goes below 2 psig to avoid this problem in the future. Norm Brewer Randolph, New Jersey Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Mar 97 20:50:00 -0700 From: jim_anderson at state.ut.us Subject: What ARE these chemicals? I'm employed by a major airline, and we stock on our aircraft individually packaged towelettes for sanitizing (?) handsets and radio microphones. They're produced by Celeste Industries Corp and are labelled "SANI-COM 3205." The package claims that it "Cleans and freshens communications and oxygen equipment" but, despite the name, makes no claim to sanitize. I'm wondering if I can use these things for sanitizing surfaces while culturing yeast. They contain the following: Benzalkonium Chloride, Octoxynol 9, Fragrance, SD Alcohol 40, and water, quote unquote. Only two of those have any meaning whatsoever for me: fragrance [I'm not too nuts about that, but whatever ...] and water. Can the chemically-knowledgeable in the group give me a clue as to whether this stuff would be useful for sanitizing and disinfecting surfaces and equipment? After all .... "I get 'em free where I work!" - Jim Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Mar 1997 17:49:30, -0500 From: sdginc at prodigy.com ( STEVE GARRETT) Subject: Decoction Mashing Dr. Pivo says: > It is repeatedly presented in the homebrew literature, that the >decoction gives you a "maltier" taste that you just can't get any other >way. I guess if you say something often enough it must be true! This seems to be the key to Dr. Pivo's post. The only reason I do decoction mashing is to obtain the maltier taste which I understand are the products of browning reactions (Maillard) which create melanoidins. As a point of reference: what amount of melanoidins are created in a traditional triple decoction mash of Pils malt as compared to the amount of melanoidins created in the malting of Munich malt? Vienna malt? Cheers! Steve Garrett sdginc at prodigy.com Denver, Colorado Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 26 Mar 1997 00:41:56 -0800 From: "Layne" <wetpetz at oberon.ark.com> Subject: Water additives Hey brewers, I'm just plain confused. I'm about to endeavor into a partial mash. My equipment and budget is limited so I am only able to cut my extract use by 50%. Anyway, the water here is soft. 30ppm Ca+ in the winter and 70ppm Ca+ in the summer. I love Pale Ale, Bitter is better. I want to simulate a traditional Pale Ale and I am also getting a grain bill together for an Irish Stout. Here is my problem. I want to increase the hardness of my water and I have, (now) two possible additives available. Calcium Chloride which I understand will contribute Ca+ and Cl- which will enhance the body of the beer. I also have Chalk. Is this the same as Calcium Sulfate or is it Calcium Carbonate. Either way what effect will it have? What are the advantages of using sulfate ions as opposed to Carbonate ions. I know that the Ca+ is there and that is what I really need anyway right? I have not seen Gypsum here yet nor have I found Burton water salts which I've also read about. I guess I also have NaCl (salt) which I think will enhance the body, head, and flavor if used in small amounts. Some help here would be appreciated. Maybe I should buy a fridge and start lagering a nice pilsener instead. I could learn to love that too. Layne Rossi wetpetz at oberon.ark.com Campbell River, BC *********************************************************** To try and fail is better than failing because we didn't try! *********************************************************** Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 26 Mar 1997 12:16:29 -0500 From: ajdel at nospmindspring.com (A. J. deLange) Subject: HCl/Acknowlegements Brien Kirby wrote: >In the #2381 post of HBD A.J. deLange indicated that the concentration of >31.4% "hardware grade" Hydrochloric Acid (also known as HCl or muriatic >acid) was 8.75N. I didn't actually mention the percentage strength or the specific gravity. The stuff available locally (Sunyside) is 28% HCl (18 Baume). My jug has 8.75N on the label in my handwriting which is what I must have calculated it to be at the time I bought it (it's a gallon jug so I've had it a while and there's plenty left). It titrates to 9.00N - close enough for government work - but the point is that this acid is not manufactured to the tolerance of laboratory standards grade, it will lose HCl to the air over time and you can't measure perfectly (I'm guessing that I measured 9.00 instead of 8.75 because the pipetter didn't deliver exactly the 0.2 mL I set it for). Thus it is best to add acid gradually until the desired pH is reached. Note, and I got reminded of this doing the titration, that it is _very_ easy to overshoot the mark if the water being acidified has low buffering capacity (alkalinity). Now Brien seems concerned that his comments are "academic". Not at all! It appears that hardware store acid comes in at least two strengths: 18 and 20. With my typical parochial viewpoint I assumed that all hardware store HCl was the same as mine. This is apparantly not the case and readers with interest in using HCl have been alerted to the fact that they should check the strength of the product they come home with prior to making calculations. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * I haven't been getting acknowledgements back from the server. Am I alone? A. J. deLange - Numquam in dubio, saepe in errore. - --> --> --> To reply remove "nosp" from address. <-- <-- Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 26 Mar 1997 07:56:35 -0500 From: Joe Rotella <rotella at apollo.hp.com> Subject: all grain newbie I'm interested in "converting" to all-grain brewing, and I'm just trying to understand the process a little. I 've got a couple of questions, and tried to outline the steps involved below--can somebody critique this and let me know if it's correct??: In terms of lautering, if you use a grain bag, do you need to bother to create and use a lauter-tun? Can't you just but the crushed grains into the bag, then into the mash-tun, and do the necessary temp adjustments for protein rest and mashing? Then, when finished, can't you just sparge through the grain bag into the mash tun? Do you even need to use a lauter-tun if you use a grain bag? Also, can you divide the wort into two pots and boil both (rather than buying/finding a monster 7-8 gallon pot) Also, if you can use the grain bag the way I have described, can't you use the mash tun as the wort boiler as well?? In a sense, I'm guessing that the steps to brew all grain would be: 1. assemble and crush the grains/ingredients as necessary. 2. put the grains into the grain bag, and put the grain bag into the mash-tun (which will also double as the wort boiler) with the appropriate amount of water 3. do the temparature/time controlling as necessary for protein rest and mashing. (depending on the grain types of course) 4. remove the grain bag, and sparge through the grain bag into the same pot used for mashing. 5. add hops/water etc. as necessary and boil the wort (again, in the same pot used for mashing) 6. cool using wort chiller 7. pitch yeast, ferment.....yada yada yada..... Is it really this simple?? Thanks in advance for any replies, Joe Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 26 Mar 1997 07:50:39 -0500 From: "David R. Burley" <Dave_Burley at compuserve.com> Subject: Gasoline Brewsters: My first reaction to Peter Brinca's comment that their last five batches were bad was that here is another case of hose sickness in which the overflow tube from a closed primary fermetation was infecting the batches. If that was the case it's time to change the hose ( sorry about the last five batches) or solve the problem permanently by going to an open primary fermeter which you can mechanically clean of all the oily crud from a fermentation. However, the coment that this was done in two separate locations and the results taste "bitter almost like gasoline" is puzzling since IMHO gasoline doesn't taste bitter. Typically, warm fermentations produce a "solventy" aroma from the esters and fusel alcohols. It is conceivable that if the same sanitation is being carried out it is not enough at either location and both areas' equipment have been contaminated. You didn't mention it, but I assume you used different yeasts for these batches? Many yeasts, like the Belgian Ale ones, give a spicy or other flavor you may not be used to. It is also possible that you have a lacto or pedio infection that is particularly virulent. I believe that a good session with concentrated bleach on everything and a rinse with boiled water, and even though you replaced all of your equipment recently, replace all your tubing and/or going to an open primary will solve this problem which just appeared in the last five batches. - -------------------------------------------------- A. Haszard says: I plan to use a three step decoction mashing procedure with a mashout at 170F. I will only heat the liquid fraction of the mash for mashout to prevent additional starch release. No need to worry about this at 170F. You should mash out the entire grist and wort, since if you don't enzymes are still active in the grain and will be re-extracted into the wort anyway and you don't get the temperature up in the grains to assist you in extracting the sugars with a lower viscosity wort. Bottom line don't worry about it, just do a good job in your decoction and go to a negative starch endpoint. Remember with a three leg decoction your enzyme content will be lower than you might expect and your hold to a negative iodine point may take 90 minutes. Be sure to use a true lager type pale malt and not a pale ale type malt as the major component in your grist. - ------------------------------------------------------ Keep on brewin' Dave Burley Kinnelon, NJ 07405 103164.3202 at compuserve.com Dave_Burley at compuserve.com Voice e-mail OK Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 26 Mar 97 09:17 EST From: eric fouch <S=eric_fouch%S=fouch%G=eric%DDA=ID=STC021+pefouch%Steelcase-Inc at mcimail.com> Subject: Homebrew Digest #2383 (March 26, Date: Wednesday, 26 March 1997 9:10am ET To: STC012.PREQUEST at STC010.SNADS From: Eric.Fouch at STC001 Subject: Homebrew Digest #2383 (March 26, In-Reply-To: The letter of Wednesday, 26 March 1997 5:46am ET HBD- I've been thinking about brewing a beer using Maple tree sap in the brew instead of water. I've seen extract recipes using the sap instead of water, but I was wondering if anyone had tried using it in all grain. A couple of options: Boil 5 gallons of sap down to 2.5 gallons and use it as make up liquid after mashing before the boil, or use the sap, pH adjusted, and unboiled (at least not much) in the mash, and sparge with pH adjusted water. The style I have chosen to adulterate with this experiment would be a Dopplebock (usually I see maple stouts, but it seems to me a dopplebock or a bock would be a better choice). Any observations? D.Burley will be happy to know I can be reached much easier than the e-mail address up top at: Eric Fouch efouch at steelcase.com Bent Dick Yactobrewery Kentwood MI Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 26 Mar 1997 10:27:46 -0800 From: Tim Plummer <plummer at brick.purchase.edu> Subject: Stalled fermentation Hi, I had a fermentation of an old ale stall out on me yesterday. I have seemingly corrected this problem, but it has prompted some new questions in my never-ending quest to achieve a state of True Beerness. First the story, then the questions. I was brewing a small (3 gal) batch of old ale. It's OG came in a little lower than I'd hoped, at 1.053. I'm using London Ale III yeast (#1318?--can't remember off hand). I made a starter about 15 hours before pitching, and I can say that noticable fermentation started about 18 hours sooner than in my past experiences without a starter. Things were going along fine, but just seemed to fall apart yesterday, 3 1/2 days after pitching. So, last night, I racked to my 3 gallon carboy. I took an SG just to confirm that I didn't experience a complete fermentation at Brew Factor 9. Sure enough, it came in at a stalled out 1.028. So, when I racked, I intentionally allowed a small bit of krausen and trub to get siphoned along with the beer. Within an HOUR, I had a new krausen beginning to form, and CO2 bubbling nicely through my airlock. This morning, a nice, clean-looking head has formed, and my airlock is bubbling at 7-second intervals. Yea! So, now questions. I notice that Wyeast calls LA3 a high flocculating yeast. Does this mean that it will be more susceptible to stalling? Also, it's listed temp. range is 64-74F. It got chilly here this week, and my brew got down to around 60F. Is that enough to prompt stalling? Third, does the higher (though not drastically so) OG affect completion of fermentation? As far as jump-starting a stalled fermentation; if I had had only one fermentation vessel available to me, would simply agitating it have been enough to restart it? Would this cause oxidation damage? My solution of racking/swirling worked, which is good, but are there any potentially adverse things that could result from this method? And finally a technical/definition question; my beer now sits in a second vessel, but still has about 1/3 of its fermentation to complete. Is this secondary fermentation? Have I more accurately "dropped" my wort? If my fermentation had NOT stalled, how complete should it have been before I racked? Thanks in advance for expanding my brewsense. Tim Plummer, Port Chester, NY. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 26 Mar 97 10:41:34 est From: paa3983 at dpsc.dla.mil (Mike Spinelli) Subject: A post-counter flow chiller hop back HBDers, I've been toying with a concept to capture the cold break prior to entering the fermentors and thought I'd throw it out for all to comment on. Since we all agree that when using a CF chiller, the cold break gets transferred along with the cooled wort into the fermentors, I'm thinking about hooking up up some sort of canister between the chiller outflow and the fermenter inflow. This canister would have fittings on top and bottom to attach hoses to. The canister unscrews to allow filling with leaf hops. The hops would help filter out the break and also add aroma to the beer. Is anyone doing this now? I think I remember reading that someone was using a Ball jar, but I guess you would need both fittings on the l id, no? ******************************* On a completely off the wall note, seeing that hops and marijuana are somewhat related, and seeing that hop teas allegedely trigger bizarre dreams, well, has anyone tried to dry and smoke hops? Mike Spinelli Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 26 Mar 1997 10:34:45 -0600 From: Rob Kienle <rkienle at interaccess.com> Subject: Re: Decoction Thread I've been following the recent decoction thread with interest. My biggest problem with decoctions has been slow or presumably incomplete conversions based on iodine testing on strained (ie, free of particulate matter) wort. What I've read so far from this thread leads me to a couple of possible conclusions/concerns, and I thought I'd see what everyone might think about them: 1) It seems that a prolonged rest at 122 may degrade some of the *desirable* proteins necessary for head retention/body. Therefore a higher rest, at 135, might be more appropriate during the 1st decoction. 2) If a second decoction is used, and any grain is included in it, it would seem imperative that it be rested appropriately to achieve conversion before the boil. BUT, if this decoction *does* include grain and it is subsequently boiled and returned to a mash that has been resting at around 145 or so, additional starches will be introduced and insufficient enzymes will be present to convert them. 3) It seems to me that 2) may contradict 1). If the first decoction is made at 135, more desirable proteins will be created but re-adding the decoct to bring the mash to 145 or 150 for the second decoct will kick in the problems associated with 2). Therefore, for the second decoction to be successfully re-added, the mash must not have been at sac. temps. So if a second decoction is desired, perhaps it *is* better to start at a 122 rest for the first, and raise to 135 for the second. That way, enough beta-amylase remains in the mash to convert the boil-generated starches. 4) But OTOH, I think Steve Alexander brings up a terrific point, in that decoctions were originally intended, in part, to control temperature, which is not a necessary function for many/most of us. So why do the second decoction at all? It would seem that conversion problems inherent with the *apparent* contradiction between point 1) and 2) by using a totally thin (ie, no grain at all) second decoction (as Steve suggests). But since the *thin* will eventually be boiled anyway, and temperature can be otherwise controlled, why not just use a single, thick decoction while the mash is at the higher, 135, protein rest, return the decoction for the sac. rest and just go from there? I don't presume this to be the definitive answer, but it seems like a logical outgrowth from what's been posted thus far. - -- Cheers4beers, Rob Kienle Chicago, IL rkienle at interaccess.com Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 26 Mar 1997 08:36:16 -0800 From: smurman at best.com Subject: SPAM / Nut Brown I didn't want to waste bandwidth with this, but it seems to be generating some discussion. The digest is now archived on the web in many places. There is really no reasonable way to keep someone from searching these digests with automated tools (and believe me there are many robots wandering around out there). This being the case, anyone who has posted to this digest at any time can consider there email address public property, from a practical standpoint. Spam is getting more and more pervasive, and there are some industrious people trying to come up with solutions. The most promising looks to be a Spam repository, whereby Spam email addresses are archived, and a user can check incoming email against these addresses and return it to sender if it matches. Anyway, for a brew related question. I'm brewing a honey brown ale next, and for the first time in formuating a recipe, I'm not quite sure what grain bill to use. I'm planning a base of pale ale malt, 1 lb. honey (or 1 1/2 lb.), 0.5 lb chocolate malt, and 0.5 lb. Carapils. I'm pretty sure this will get me a brown color, but I'm wondering about the brown *taste*. My idea was to replace the caramel sweetness with the honey flavor, but what about the Nut in Nut Brown Ale. What exactly is responsible for the nutty taste in say Sam Smith's or to a lesser extent Newcastle? Is it the way they are fermented, the yeast, or a particular grain bill (or a combination)? SM http://www.best.com/~smurman/zymurgy Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 26 Mar 1997 11:34:00 -0600 From: rlabor at lsumc.edu (LaBorde, Ronald) Subject: Re: Decoction Mashing Question From: haszarda at stricom.army.mil > Bottom Line: I'm concerned that by using the lautering manifold > in my mash tun to extract the liquid portion of my mash will > "foul the works" for lautering. The work-around solution seems > to be using a kitchen colander to push down the mash and ladle > out "most" of the liquid. > > Comments and suggestions, please... > > Mac. Hi all, Well that seemed like a good idea to me and I pushed down the colander and scooped the liquid out with a small measuring cup into the colander. Worked great to get the liquid portion only. But...lauter constipation city! I am not sure if this was the cause of the stuck runoff, but I suspect it may be. After all that pushing down the grains, I could get only a slight trickle. Tried blowing to clear the screen - nada. Tried removing all the contents to a temp container, then scooping everything back into the mash/lauter vessel (after cleaning and examining the homebrew easymasher). Yup - nada. The grains were soggy, mushy, and still the lauter was a trickle. Well I am one hardheaded dude so four hours later I had my wort. I will enter it into the CCH competition as my dopplebock, quite good in my opinion. Brew day: Hah! will start early - I need time to do this double decoction. Started before sunup, wife came out and said Ron, why don't you turn on the patio lites, you can see better. OK turned lites on. Later turned lites off. Happily, I brewed, ever aware of the time honored tradition of having a brew while brewing and enjoying every minute. Wife came out again and said Ron why don't you turn on the patio lites! I had gone from sunup past sundown :>)) Happy Brewing, Ron Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 26 Mar 1997 10:49:41 -0700 From: "Brian M. Rezac" <brian at aob.org> Subject: 1997 AHA National Homebrew Competition The following is the copy of a postcard that will soon be sent to all AHA members. It is in reference to the 1997 AHA National Homebrew Competition and Boston Beer Company's World Homebrew Contest (LongShot). It also corrects the wording of Rule F in the 1997 NHC Rules and Regulations. Thanks. - Brian Rezac, AHA Administrator - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - Enter Your Best Brews! - ---------------------------------- The American Homebrewers Association National Homebrew Competition is just around the corner! What's New With the NHC - -------------------------------------- Enter the AHA National Homebrew Competition (NHC) and you can enter Boston Beer Company's World Homebrew Contest (LongShot) for only $5. Even better, if one of your homebrews places first, second or third in the first round of the NHC, you have the option of entering one of your winning homebrews directly into the final round of LongShot for free! Reminders! - ---------------- NHC entries due April 28May 9. NHC first round is May 1718. The NHC first-round winners list will be available at http://beertown.org and at info at aob.org on June 2, 1997. LongShot entries due June 913. LongShot competition is June 2021. Save four bottles of your homebrew for the AHA Nationals plus another four bottles if you choose to enter the World Homebrew Contest. Oops! One more thing! Rule F of the NHC Rules and Regulations should read: "The AHA has the right to copyright the recipe to help ensure that the Entrant and the AHA receive all due credit whenever the recipe is published." For more information about how to enter or judge in the National Homebrew Competition, call the AHA at (303) 447-0816. For more information about the World Homebrew Contest call the LongShot hotline at (617) 368-5049. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 26 Mar 1997 13:21:24 -0500 (EST) From: Alex Santic <alex at salley.com> Subject: Re: Wyeast 1275 Thames Valley >From: Charles Epp <chuckepp at ukans.edu> > >This is a summary of responses to my request some time ago for reports >on experiences with Wyeast 1275 Thames Valley ale yeast. Most >people who responded privately reported some level of dissatisfaction >with the yeast due to excessive production of esters or other >strong-tasting by-products (comments ranged from "very fruity" to >"fruitbasket" to "bleach"-tasting). Because of the great variety of homebrew procedures used, this is a difficult forum in which to achieve definitive conclusions about yeast flavor profiles. I would take these observations with a grain of salt and not be so quick to blame the yeast. I've made 3 fine batches with 1275 and experienced no imbalance of esters or phenolic off-flavors. In fact, it seems like a relatively neutral strain. The reported results can be easily explained on the basis of common procedural problems. In particular, many people ferment ales at relatively warm room temperatures. Alex Santic NYC Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 26 Mar 1997 14:11:17 -0600 (CST) From: korz at xnet.com Subject: spam/gasoline-like bitterness/headless wheat beer/decoction stuff John writes: >Treat the spam just like you do the junk snail mail. Put it in >the circular file without even opening it, or does everyone >except me open all their junk mail. I take a more pro-active position on both. For electronic spam, I either send email to the ISP (via root at ISP.com, abuse at ISP.com, etc.) or I have my ISP (or employer, depending on which address got it) complain to the ISP. Which brings up a question. Remember this: >From: Julia Herz <design at bouldermarketing.com> >Subject: Special RedFish / Left Hand Dinner The problem here is that "bouldermarketing.com" is not an ISP, presumably, and the domain is just owned by "Boulder Marketing." How can we find out who the ISP is for this domain? I know that ISPs can an do lose their connection to the internet if they are found to be "harbouring" spammers, so they take complaints very seriously. Is there a website that shows the ISP for various domains? What can we do if bouldermarketing.com really isn't hosted by an ISP? As for USnail junk mail, if it's not "bulk rate," I simply cross out my name, and write "Return to sender... please remove from all mailing lists." and toss it into a mailbox. If it is bulk rate, this won't work, so I open it, and if there's a self-addressed business reply envelope, I use that to send back the mailing address and ask that they take me off their mailing list. I've cut my junk mail by 90%! *** Peter writes: >Subject: Bacteria in beer? <snip> >The flavor in the beer is an extremely bitter almost gasoline like taste. Hmmm... I can't think of any infection that would cause bitterness like this, but higher alcohols can give you a solvent-like flavour... could that be it? What temperature are you fermenting at? Try to keep it under 70F and see if that doesn't help. Most commonly, the reason for overly bitter beer is using a partial-boil recipe with a full boil. When you boil in a concentrated wort, you can get as little as half of the hop utilisation that you get with a full boil. If you converted a partial-boil extract recipe to all-grain and didn't scale the hops, you could be using as much as double the correct amount (although 25% too much is more likely -- it depends on the OG and boil gravity). *** Gavin writes: >I have been doing decoction mashes lately and the flavour has been >excellent (IMHO). All have at least 30% malted wheat but all have had poor >head retention (for wheat beer). So I suspect it may be my mashing technique. >I do a single decoction mash as follows: > >time main decoc >0 104 >10 122 >35 122 122 (30% 2:1) >50 122 160 >65 122 160 >80 122 boil >90 147 >110 147 If you caught my protein rest post, you probably already figured this out, but just in case you missed it, I recommend that you try using a 130 or 135F rest in place of the 122F rest. >My efficiency hasn't been great but I suspect that more to do with the poor >milling. Also check your pH. Too high or too low a pH will also give you poor efficiency. Furthermore, you can eek out a few points more by mashing-out if you don't already do so (I've already cut away that part of your post). *** Mac writes: > starch release. As I will mash and lauter in the same vessel (as > well as boil), can I remove the liquid fraction during mashing > via my lautering manifold, or will this prematurely "set" the > grainbed prior to adding the mashout liquid back to the mash. Nope... you will stir it all back up when you add the decoction back in... you will have to reset the grain bed after you reach mashout. Fear not! > "foul the works" for lautering. The work-around solution seems > to be using a kitchen colander to push down the mash and ladle > out "most" of the liquid. Actually, this is an old-fashioned way of laeutering, believe it or not! There is a name for this basket-like device that was used just like you propose. Somewhere deep inside my head I recall some association with Witbier and if you look at the Celis White label and if someone in the photo is holding a basket-like thing (I don't recall for sure) that's what it is for! *** Steve writes: >secondary concern. It's interesting to note that according to M&BS >traditional decoction mashes are quite thin - in the neighborhood of >2.5qt/# as I recall - also quite long !! Absolutely, and you shouldn't be surprised... you *know* why too! All those decoctions boil off a *lot* of water! You need to start with a very loose mash or you will end up with a cinder block in your laeuter tun. *** Jim writes: >Does anyone know what the mineral content for a weissen should be or a >brewing city where it is historically made? I'm sure you'll slap your forehead and go "dooh!" when you read it. Bavarian Weizens would typically have Bavarian water ;^)... I would use the Munich water profile. I don't recall the exact numbers, but I think it's medium calcium (say 75), low sulphate (~10 to 20) , medium carbonate (about 150, I'd say). Actually, if you can just keep the carbonate and sulphate low and not compromise your calcium level, you wouldn't really benefit (flavour-wise) from adding the carbonate. *** Amidst a lot of very good information about decoctions, Dave writes: >Pivo is correct in pointing out that the decoction size will determine the >next temperature step in most normal cases and that it is extremely unwise >to take a large decoction, since you will be denaturing much of the enzyme >content during the boil which will be needed in the main mash to sacharify >all the starch released in the boil. ( Notwithstanding that some of the >enzymes are dissolved in the water in the main mash). 1/3 of the grist is >the correct order of magnitude. This is especially critical in multiple >decoctions. I believe that MOST of the enzymes will be in the liquid. Think about it... unless the enzymes are soluble in water, they are not going to be able to interact with the proteins, starches, dextrins, etc. to convert them. My *guess* would be that 75% or better of the enzymes are in the liquid part of the mash. Another way of looking at it is, statistically, if you did a triple decoction and took your first two decoctions of 50% grist each, AND if the enzymes were mostly in the grist, you would have only 25% of the enzymes left for the saccharification rest after the 2nd decoction was added back to the main mash (the third decoction being the one with all liquid to raise temp to mashout). Clearly that's not the case. Personally, what I've done is take *just* grist (with a seive) and add some acidified brewing water to make it workable. I don't know, however, if this is such a good idea because you really need some enzymes in the decoction (as George points out) to create the sugars needed for the Browning Reactions (melanoidin formation). Al. Al Korzonas, Palos Hills, IL korz at xnet.com Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 26 Mar 97 22:07:23 UT From: "Raymond Estrella" <ray-estrella at msn.com> Subject: bad beer Peter asks, >The last five batches my brother and I have brewed have gone >bad. Im stumped and its really starting to irk me. What I would look at very carefully is your fermenters. It is really easy to swish some TSP around then soak with sanitizer, and think that they are clean. Look at your primary fermenter especially. If you bottle, look at your bottling bucket, or racking cane and hose. It sounds like a sanitizing issue to me, so if the items I mentioned don't help you will need to take a few hours and totally clean and disinfect everything that you use in your brewing. Even the floor and walls. I do it every couple of months just for G.P., and boy do I catch hell from my wife. "Why wont you clean the rest of the house like that"? Ray Estrella Cottage Grove MN ray-estrella at msn.com *******Never relax, constantly worry, have a better homebrew.******* Return to table of contents