HOMEBREW Digest #2535 Mon 20 October 1997

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

  New convenience! (Some Guy)
  Yeast fight! (Charles Hudak)
  altitude and thermometer calibration (Dave Whitman)
  Serving temps for stouts ("Arnold J. Neitzke")
  Whitelabs "Pitchable" Yeast ("Jim Pierce")
  Phil's Phalse Bottom Fix ("George Smith")
  whitelabs ("Olin J. Schultz")
  Fun and unimportant questions (brian_dixon)
  Yeast Loosing Interest. (Charles Pedder)
  steinbier frag grenades hbd 2532 ("Grant W. Knechtel")
  I will Drink until I Drive... I mean Die! ("Jim Pierce")
  OG and the Rule of Mixtures (EFOUCH)
  Chocolate in beer (dajohnson)
  Re: FW: How do I figure OG? (Jeff Renner)
  OG question (Jim Suggs)
  Pumkin Beers (Alpinessj)
  Yeast, Starters and Hungarian Tinkers ("Michael Gerholdt")
  comments on lautering (Lou Heavner)
  How long is too long (Steven Ensley)
  Re: Steinbier Fragmentation Grenades (Jay Reeves)
  STEINFILLER: Styles / / BEER JUDGE PROGRAMS (Part I)  by Sam Piper (Don H Van Valkenburg)
  Styles--Beer Judge Programs (part 2) (Don H Van Valkenburg)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Sat, 18 Oct 1997 22:09:44 -0400 (EDT) From: Some Guy <pbabcock at oeonline.com> Subject: New convenience! Greetings, Beerlings! Take me to your lager - as long as it's close by... Well, we all know how notoriously lazy UNIX programmers are. I mean, look at all the abbreviated commands, and single-keystroke repeaters built into the operating system! Well, this sterotypical laziness has paid dividends! Karl got sick of having to type "homebrew-request" all the time. You can now send subscription and queue requests simply to req at hbd.org! A vacation for your fingers! For those unwilling to change: rest easy - homebrew-request@hbd.org still functions just fine... See ya! Pat Babcock in SE Michigan pbabcock at oeonline.com Home Brew Digest Janitor janitor@hbd.org Harvest THESE: rhundt at fcc.gov jQuello at fcc.gov sness at fcc.gov rchong at fcc.gov Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 15 Oct 1997 10:03:10 -0700 From: Charles Hudak <cwhudak at gemini.adnc.com> Subject: Yeast fight! Jim wrote: >If you want a "jip" then go to Whitelabs! I have personally experimented >with their yeast and in every single case, the Whitelabs "starter" is in >need of a starter! I have talked with other brewers in my area which concur >that you *MUST* culture a starter with Whitelabs so-called "pitchable >yeast." In dialogue with other brewers, and from personal experience, if you >pitch the Whitelabs "pitchable" slurry you WILL have a 12 hour to 18 hour >lag phase in fermentation! You might as well pitch Wyeast straight from the >packet! I think Whitelabs has a long way to go in producing a pitchable >slurry. Until then, do your self a favor and culture up the Whitelabs yeast. Gee, Jim you sound a little bitter. I'm sure you've never had problems with any of your Wyeast cultures. Why don't you provide any support for your rantings? How many times have you tried it (once doesn't count). How many people have you talked with? How many times have *they* tried it? You also don't mention what your "area" is. Is it possible that your supplier doesn't keep fresh inventory? In conversations with Chris (White), the cell counts in his "pitchable yeast" are about ten times what Wyeast gives you in a smack pack. We recently discussed the fact that Wyeast is going to start doing pitchable packs in the near future (boy, the competition got them a little nervous?) but in doing some tests, Chris told me that they are still using 1/4 to 1/5 the number of cells in his slurries even in their "pitchable" packs. I've *never* had a problem with the yeast; I use it alot. Dozens of times at home and a half dozen in a commercial setting. I get lag times of 4-6 hours at the most. In fact I trust it enough that I use it in the brewpub for which I am the Headbrewer and it has always been great. I think you need to focus on the freshness issue, not the supplier. Chris is a top-notch microbiologist. The only drawback to Whitelabs, and I have discussed this with him, is that he doesn't have the huge variety that Wyeast does in his yeast bank. He's working on it though. He recently took a collecting trip to England, Germany and Belgium and brought back some great cultures. The central issue here is freshness. Cultures must be kept refrigerated and used fairly quickly or the viability will go way down and you *will* have to culture. I remember buying a beer in a local liquor store a while back from a small but well respected micro. This was a few years ago before the demand was starting to rise. For $4, I got the most awful porter that I've ever had. Being involved in the industry several things came to mind. This was brewery that had won numerous awards; some for this very beer. Either my tastes were way off (not likely, I can find merits in almost any beer) or the judges who gave this beer awards were idiots (though I've seen this, I tend to defer to the talents of the people who actually sat and did a blind judging of the product). The other possibility was, this being a fairly small liquor store, the beer was probably old or hadn't been rotated properly. Now did this experience cause me to swear off this breweries beers forever or slander them in some public forum? Hell no. Being in the industry has given me quite a bit of insight and made me quite a bit more forgiving. I'm still a fierce consumer, though. What it *did* cause me to do is verify the freshness of the products I was getting either by buying from a store that did high volume and rotated stock or by talking directly with the owner about the specific products "hey, how long have you had this in?". If he says "oh, over a month now. It's not selling real well" you know that that's a bad choice. I think you see my point. Charles Hudak Charles Hudak cwhudak at adnc.com Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 15 Oct 1997 14:34:19 -0500 From: Dave Whitman <dwhitman at rohmhaas.com> Subject: altitude and thermometer calibration Ian Smith, Dick Dunn and I have been exchanging email on the fine points of thermometer calibration at high altitudes. Checking the calibration of thermometers is important for all grain brewers, since even relatively high quality thermometers can be off enough to mess up mash temperatures. Typically, you calibrate a thermometer by checking it at the freezing and boiling point of water. To get a good freezing point, make a slush of FINELY CHIPPED ice in just enough water to make a flowable slurry. Put it in a styrofoam cup or insulated container and stir well while taking the measurement. Within the accuracy of home instruments and the normal range of atmospheric pressures, this temperature is 0.0C/212F. Boiling point is trickier. Contrary to Dick's recent post, ambient temperature and humidity won't affect the boiling point, but you DO need to know the current local ambient pressure (which is affected by elevation and weather). For lowlanders, ignoring the pressure correction usually isn't a big error, but at high altitudes the correction is significant. >From Lange's Handbook of Chemistry, excerpts from a table relating boiling point of water (degrees C) and ambient pressure (mmHg): BP Pressure BP Pressure 90 526 96 658 91 546 97 682 92 567 98 707 93 589 99 733 94 611 100 760 95 634 101 788* *this value from CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics To get the predicted boiling point knowing the ambient pressure, interpolate between the tabulated points. I initially suggested that Ian just check a weather barometer to figure out the correct boiling point. Dick pointed out that the barometric pressure in weather reports is "corrected" for altitude to give an equivalent sea level pressure, and is worthless for predicting boiling points. Most chemistry labs have an absolute mercury barometer for correcting boiling points; a call to a local university or research lab should get you the true pressure. Local weathermen can probably also give you the absolute pressure even though they don't normally report it that way. Ian was able to get the absolute pressure by calling the National Center for Atmospheric Research, which happens to be in Boulder. Liquid thermometers are calibrated at a certain fixed immersion depth which is marked with an etched line on high quality thermometers; if you see such a line, you'll get more accurate reading by holding the thermometer at that depth. If you don't see a line, just use a consistent depth. - --- Dave Whitman dwhitman at rohmhaas.com "Opinions expressed are those of the author, and not Rohm and Haas Company" Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 15 Oct 1997 14:30:33 -0400 (EDT) From: "Arnold J. Neitzke" <neitzkea at frc.com> Subject: Serving temps for stouts All A friend gave me a bottle of Samual Smith's Stout and a bottle of Mackeson Triple XXX stout. At what temperture are these beers best consumed at? Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 15 Oct 1997 13:20:08 -0700 From: "Jim Pierce" <jimpierce at ibm.net> Subject: Whitelabs "Pitchable" Yeast Fellow HBDers: In response to a earlier posting sounding praises for Whitelabs "pitchable" yeast, I stated that the Whitelabs "pitchable" yeast was a "gyp." Many have e-mailed me (privately) with your testimonies of how right I was. Some of you have e-mailed me and have defended the Whitelabs yeast as "acceptable." Common to all the posts defending Whitelabs is that if a starter is used it is a good yeast. I want to make it clear that I did state that a starter SHOULD be used. My "beef" is that Whitelabs advertises their yeast as "pitchable." Now, if you are a homebrewer who thinks a lag phase of anywhere from 12 to 18 hours is acceptable, then Whitelabs straight from the tube is for you! My point is NOT that Whitelabs yeast strains are "garbage." In fact, their strains seem to be pretty good, AFAIK. If you want to capitalize on the Whitelabs yeast, then I recommend that you create a half gallon starter from the tube. You will easily save a day over culturing up from a Wyeast pack! You should also cut your lag time down significantly, too! I don't think I have to tell of the great benefits to cutting down lag time in fermentation. I mean that is why we create starters to begin with! Right? So, for those of you who wrote me and thought I was too hard on Whitelabs I do not think I was. Again, I am not claiming that Whitelabs produces a bad product. I am saying that, IMO, their product is not "pitchable" straight from the tube. Again, some may find that a 12-18 hour lag phase is acceptable; if so, Whitelabs "from the tube" is for you. I hesitate to think such a lag phase in fermentation is acceptable. I would culture up a starter from the Whitelabs tube to produce a stronger fermentation which would prevent contamination and even off flavors associated with pitching "weak" yeast, or underpitching. I guess it only means the difference between "good beer" and even "better beer." Who would want a "better beer" for crying out loud! :) Cheers! Jim Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 15 Oct 1997 14:20:22 -0600 From: "George Smith" <gpsmith at atmel.com> Subject: Phil's Phalse Bottom Fix There have been many comments such as: "Also the plastic false bottom floats so I used my racking cane to hold it down while I poured the wort in." I solved this problem in my 10 gallon Gott by taking a piece of tubing long enough to go tightly around the circumference of the inside bottom of the lautering vessel, warm one end, force the other end into the warmed end, then placing it in the bottom of the vessel with the phalse bottom. Works great and keeps the phalse bottom in place. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 15 Oct 1997 11:27:07 -0700 From: "Olin J. Schultz" <beerx3 at ix.netcom.com> Subject: whitelabs In response to Jim's statement that whitelabs yeast is a "jip". I have seen about 30 samples of this yeast used just from the tube and the average lag time is 12 hours. Wyeast packets are more like 24-36 hours. There is a huge difference! In over 100 documented batches I have done I have had only one infection problem with a lag time that is under 12 hours (and I do brew outside during the summer). I have yet to see an off flavor as result of an infection in a batch made with whitelabs yeast. I'm not saying it won't happen obviously, just in these 30 cases it hasn't As has been pointed out lately Jim, the homebrew digest is different than your mix of average homebrewers, but using pitchable yeast is a great, great way to get brewers who otherwise would use dry yeast because they dont want to make starters(and there are many) to step into the world of liquid yeast. It also offers time saving to experienced brewers. I recommend to experienced brewers that they make a 1000ml starter(effectively ending with about a 1500ml. starter because the whitelabs tube is equivalent to a 500ml. starter)to cut the lag time even further. One of the added benefits for 10 gallon batch size brewers is that you can make a 2000 ml. starter overnight! Can't do that with a wyeast packet. Your looking at probably 4 days to build a new Wyeast to 2000 ml.. So my point is Whitelabs yeast is hardly a "jip" when comparing available commercial alternatives and that they give you what they say they are going to give you... a slurry of yeast equal to about a 500ml. starter. Now their advertised lag times may be off, I don't know, but I imagine that when they are working with yeast straight from the lab they are getting a much more vigorous product than what the homebrewer ends up with. The problems with Whitelabs is that the shelf life is limited to a few weeks and the selection is limited to a few strains. Whitelabs also does not ship well. Therefore Wyeast will continue to be the most popular liquid yeast among homebrewers. The cost of whitelabs pitchable yeast runs about $1.30-1.50 more than Wyeast. Even when building up starters, I think the time savings far out weigh the costs. Thanks, Olin Schultz http://www.morebeer.com Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 15 Oct 97 15:44:59 -0700 From: brian_dixon at om.cv.hp.com Subject: Fun and unimportant questions Has anyone ever tried that "dream pillow" recipe that Papazian came up with? My brewing buddies and I were just talking about it and wondering if we ought to give it a shot, just for fun ya know! For those of you that don't get enough heat out of the top of your stove, have you tried boiling the wort _inside_ the oven? Seems like you could get plenty of energy there, and keep quite a rolling boil going. And if you have a self-cleaning oven, getting rid of that black boil-over stuff would be breeze. Only downsides that I can think of is a) the volatiles that you want to get rid of may (somewhat) end up back in the beer (DMS primarily), and b) you can't see the hot-break coming very well, so it'd be easier to have an accidental boil over unless you use a larger pot. Note that this discussion applies only if your pot fits in the oven, as a 33-quart canner often does (up to 7 gallons in the boil). Anyone ever tried this? How about for pre-heating, then conducting the boil on the stove top? I just use a 160 kBTU propane burner outside myself... Finally, I've heard of people mashing pumpkin brews inside the pumpkin a few times. But I've also heard that you don't want to use the Jack-O-Lantern types (flavorless), rather you should use the pumpkin pie (sweet) pumpkins instead. But pumpkin pie pumpkins are so much smaller, you'd have to mash in about a dozen pumpkins to make a single 5-gallon batch. Well, which is it? Are the pumpkin-mashers out there using Jack-O-Lanterns or some mondo type of pie pumpkin? Later, Brian ....................................................................... Item Subject: WINMAIL.DAT Couldn't convert Microsoft Mail Message Data item to text at a gateway. Return to table of contents
Date: 15 Oct 1997 20:33:59 -0400 From: Charles Pedder <cpedder at ford.com> Subject: Yeast Loosing Interest. I have noted a few threads of late where yeast has gone quiet when racking or even just taking an SG sample, so my observations over the last couple of days may be of interest. I am currently fermenting a batch of full mash dry stout and after 7 days of fairly vigorous activity the little guys went a bit quiet. A pessimist looking over my shoulder would have said "It's all over son". But an SG reading of 1.026 from a OG of 1.060 when I was expecting to get down to 1.016 to 1.018 was a little bit disappointing. I used a good liquid yeast and the little guys had to be told to lift their game. I have had results before from swirling the fermenter (moving the base of the fermenter in a circular motion on a slippery surface) and so I did the same again. As I was swirling much CO2 bubbled through the airlock as you would expect as the gas loosely present in suspension left the scene, but at the end of the commotion the airlock again sat still. In fact a pessimist looking over my shoulder would have said the bubble was moving backwards. A depressing sight to one so full of hope. The next morning there was still doubtful activity, although I didn't have time to hang around gazing too long. Just in case you are wondering, the fermenter is in a temperature controlled cabinet. That afternoon upon return from work I still was not impressed. But hope being the powerful force that it is, I swirled again. Considerable gas escaped through the airlock during the agitation again, but to my surprise and happiness, following on was a steading activity of 1 bubble per 10 seconds which continued through the evening. The next morning it had slowed to 1 per 30 seconds, but I think we are on the road again and will repeat the swirl this evening. Regards, Charles Pedder (cpedder at gw.ford.com) Environmental & Safety Engineering Ford Motor Company of Australia Ltd. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 15 Oct 1997 22:54:42 -0700 From: "Grant W. Knechtel" <GWK at hartcrowser.com> Subject: steinbier frag grenades hbd 2532 Dan stated in HBD 2532: "A recent poster suggests checking out streams and rivers for suitable rocks to be used for a steinbier. I personally wouldn't do this, many times the water has soaked within the stone and upon heating it turns to steam and the resultant pressure within the stone causes it to shatter most unpleasantly. When I got the hankering to brew a batch I went down to the local landscape emporium and purchased 6-7 baseball sized pieces of pink Rocky Mt. granite, cost was about $0.75. This is a much safer alternative and pretty darn cheap to boot...." I like the idea of cheap and convenient, but if you expect the landscape rocks you bought were automatically less wet, you might want to rethink that, unless they had been well heated and out of rain or dew. Don't know if your rocks were rounded or angular, broken rock. Rounded rocks don't have corners for stress to concentrate and thus spall. They should be more sound, not having incipient cracks or unrelieved stress from blasting and/or crushing as breaking points. The ideal from a stress standpoint would be a homogenous sphere. When I do this, I plan to find some fresh, unweathered, fist sized rocks of fine grained volcanic rock or quartzite from a river gravel bar out of the flow, get them in out of the weather for several days, then *slowly* heat them to about 500 degrees in an oven, probably in an old pot to catch fragments. Rocks which break will be discarded. Survivors will become steinbier steine. I will wear lots of heavy clothing, welder's gloves and goggles when rocking the wort. I will be mentally prepared for incoming shrapnel and a violent boil. The bottom line is use whatever works for you. This technology is thousands of years old, far in advance of all our technical discussion, but be careful *whenever* you heat *any* rocks as they can be dangerous. Don't use shale or other low-grade sedimentary rocks, as they will very likely make some nasty tastes in your beer. Just my $.02 as a geologist and beer geek. -Grant Neue Des Moines Hausbrauerei Des Moines, Washington Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 15 Oct 1997 22:59:29 -0700 From: "Jim Pierce" <jimpierce at ibm.net> Subject: I will Drink until I Drive... I mean Die! Andy Walsh <awalsh at crl.com.au> writes... >Higher risk of death for beer binge drinkers >(97/10/8) HealthGate (MALDEN) -- Men who drink more than six >bottles of beer at one sitting are much more likely to die -- from a >heart >attack or a violent incident -- than men who consume up to three bottles >of beer at a time, according to research published in British Medical >Journal. Personal research, and I have friends who will collaborate this, shows that if you drink over six bottles of beer each night you may die, but you will die very, very, very, happy! Of course, one should not drink and drive, or drink and beat their spouses and children, and kick their dogs while drinking. In fact, I drink --stop-- then kick my dog... I make sure I stop drinking when I do it, since it would be highly improper to kick my dog and drink at the same time! Of course, now that I think about it... I could put down my pint and beat my wife, too! For that matter, I could stop drinking and drive! You know... "Mr.. officer, I am not drinking AND driving... sure I had over six pints... if you give me a ticket I may hang myself... but, no I am not drinking and driving! Well, what to do? Cheers! Jim Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 1997 08:26:48 -0400 From: EFOUCH at steelcase.com Subject: OG and the Rule of Mixtures Date: Thursday, 16 October 1997 8:24am ET To: Sendout From: Eric.Fouch at STC001 Subject: OG and the Rule of Mixtures HBD- Kevin the "fluff-head" asks about his final OG of cider-honey mixtures. Specific gravity follows the rule of mixtures: Assuming 2.5#s of honey equals .165 gallons (and I've not measured it, but I heard it somewhere- at any rate the method will work even if the volume is wrong), we can reason the following- 3.165 gallons and 1.165 gallons = 4.33 gallons 73% (3.165/4.33) at 1.072, and 27% (1.165/4.33) at 1.132 Therefore, .73 * 1.072 + .27 * 1.132 = 1.088 A note about Jim Bentsons pumpkin ale recipe. When the original recipe like this came out last year, it drew fire for the potential of washing starches into the fermenter, as straining water through pumpkin and grain "guts" will liberate unconverted (heathen) starches. Bruce Gill worries about his overnight mashes going "backward" as the temperature gradually falls. Not so long ago, we had a discussion here about "reverse mashing", heating to, say 150 F and letting the temp drift back down through the lower temps for alpha amylase activity. This won't happen, as alpha amylase is denatured relatively quickly at 150 F. An overnight mash that stays above 150 F for an hour or so will denature alpha (and eventually beta) amylase, and not make smaller sugars. Eric Fouch efouch at steelcase.com Self Proclaimed Brewing Pundit Bent Dick YoctoBrewery Kentwood MI Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 97 08:19:42 -0500 From: dajohnson at mail.biosis.org Subject: Chocolate in beer Hey all -- Just wondering if anybody has some guidelines for using chocolate in beer. What kinds work, what doesn't, how much for a 5 gallon batch, when to add it, anything else noteworthy??? A couple years back i brewed a chocolate brown ale. I used (i think) about a half pound of bakers' chocolate in the boil (say 20 or 30 minutes before the end of the boil). This beer was pretty mild, but the chocolate wasn't really even noticeable. The only thing noticeable about it was that there was this sort of bitterness, different from hops bitterness, but nothing discernibly "chocolatey". The bitterness was definitely from the dark, slightly bitter bakers' chocolate (i think it was unsweetened or semi-sweet). Any suggestions, recommendations or comments would definitely be appreciated. thanks dan johnson Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 1997 10:34:23 -0400 From: Jeff Renner <nerenner at umich.edu> Subject: Re: FW: How do I figure OG? Kevin MacRae asked: >A math/science question. >If 2.5 lbs of honey in 3 gallons of Cider = about 1.072 >and 2.5 lbs of honey in 1 gallon of Cider = about 1.132 >what was the gravity when I combined them? First of all, you subtract 1 from your SG so that you are dealing only with the SG greater than 1, (so 1.072 becomes 72 for example) then you find the weighted average of the two (the volume of one times its SG plus the volume of the second times its SG less one, all divided by the total volume. If you mixed three gallons at 1.072 with one gallon at 1.132, you'd get 1.087: [(3 x 72) + (1 x 132)]/4 = 87. Then adding 1 back, SG 1.087 However, it won't be quite this, since you aren't combining 3 gallons with one gallon due to the volume of the honey. When you added 2.5 lbs. of honey (~3.5 cups, or 0.22 gallons according to Papazian's HBC) to each, you increased the volume of each by this amount, or 3.22 gallons and 1.22 gallons, for a total of 4.44 gallons. So: [(3.22 x 72) + 1.22 x 132)]/4.44 = 92, or adding back the 1, SG 1.092 So the answer is *1.092* Hope this helps, not only with the answer, but also with the method, so you can understand it and do it yourself even while wearing shoes ;-) (I used to teach middle school science). Jeff -=-=-=-=- Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan c/o nerenner at umich.edu "One never knows, do one?" Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 1997 11:39:11 -0400 From: Jim Suggs <jim.suggs at gtri.gatech.edu> Subject: OG question Kevin- Here's some science to answer your question: The gravity of a combination of two volumes of wort can be determined by the following equation: Gtotal = (V1*G1 + V2*G2)/(Vtot) This falls out of the fact that you've got the same amount of mass in the two pots as you have in the carboy after you combined them. You've measured G1 and G2, so all we need are the volumes of each pot and the total volume. Let's say (for the sake of argument) that 2.5 lbs of honey is about a quart in volume. Assuming that the volumes are strictly additive, you should have 13 + 1 = 14 qts of volume in your first pot, and 4 + 1 = 5 qts of volume in the second. Now, for reals the volumes won't be strictly additive (there will be a negative volume of mixing), but the fact that our estimate of the volume of the honey is pretty much a guess makes this effect minor. OK, so V1 is 14 qts, V2 is 5 qts. Assuming again that the volumes are strictly additive, Vtot is 19 qts. Cranking that equation through, Gtot = (14*1.072 + 5*1.132)/19 = 1.088 Hopefully, someone will let us know if this is all messed up. have a beer. hell, have two! -suggs Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 1997 11:59:30 -0400 (EDT) From: Alpinessj at aol.com Subject: Pumkin Beers With all the talk about pumpkin beers, here are my thoughts. I have made 3 different batches of pumpkin beers over the last 3 years, and the "best" one, or the one that had the best "pumpkin" flavor contained no pumpkin at all, just the spices (actually, only one spice, pumpkin pie spice). To get an orange color I used crystal, victory and special roast malts. Since then, I have used cut up, cooked, and mashed pumpkin (what a pain) in the mash, and canned pumpkin. The canned is by far the easiest to deal with if you want to have actuall pumpkin in your pumpkin beer. Somebody mentioned that canned pumpkin is actually butternut squash, but I checked and the ingredients stated that it was 100% pumpkin, no preservatives. This year (actually last night) I brewed a new batch of pumkin beer. My grain bill for a 5 gallon batch was something like this: (I don't have my notes in front of me) special roast 4 oz victory 4 oz crystal 120 2 oz crystal 60 12 oz 6 row 4 lbs 2 row 6 lbs canned pumpkin 3 lbs 1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice I mashed at 130 for 20 min, 154 for 60 min, and 160 for 10. 90 minute boil, and I added the spice for the final 5 minutes. I did not have any problems with spargeing and the wort ran clear after 1 gallon of recirc. O.G. was 1.060 (I know, my extraction rate sucks). It had a nice spicy flavor and orange color at pitching. If the spice gets scrubbed out during fermentation, I will add more in the secondary. I'll let you know how it turns out. Scott Jackson The Jackson Backyard Brewery Denver, CO Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 1997 10:07:08 -0400 From: "Michael Gerholdt" <gerholdt at ait.fredonia.edu> Subject: Yeast, Starters and Hungarian Tinkers Jim Pierce wrote the following: >If you want a "jip" then go to Whitelabs! I have personally experimented >with their yeast and in every single case, the Whitelabs "starter" is in >need of a starter! I have talked with other brewers in my area which concur >that you *MUST* culture a starter with Whitelabs so-called "pitchable >yeast." In dialogue with other brewers, and from personal experience, if you >pitch the Whitelabs "pitchable" slurry you WILL have a 12 hour to 18 hour >lag phase in fermentation! You might as well pitch Wyeast straight from the >packet! I think Whitelabs has a long way to go in producing a pitchable >slurry. Until then, do your self a favor and culture up the Whitelabs yeast. Pitching an adequate amount of yeast is certainly important, but it is not the sole determining factor in how soon active fermentation will begin. If the yeast is not active, it will take time, no matter how large the quantity pitched, to produce visibile fermenting activity. You can demonstrate this at home by stepping up some Wyeast to whatever quantity you wish. When it has fermented the wort out completely, simply store this starter for a few weeks. Keep it cool in the meantime. When you finally do pitch it, let it warm to room temperatures so it isn't shocked upon pitching, but do nothing else to it. You'll find that you're not going to get the 6 hour active fermentation that you get if you pitch adequate amounts of yeast when the starter is just at or just done with its high krausen. Thus, I would say that there is perhaps some misrepresentation or at least misunderstanding on both sides of the coin. Whitelabs should be very clear that though there is a pitchable quantity of yeast, the yeast may in fact be in lag phase (is that correct?) and will not take off immediately. And those who use such pitchable slurries must also understand the same thing and not accuse a business of ripping them off. When stepping a Whitelab slurry up, you will not only increase the number of yeast cells - which may not be _necessary_ but certainly can't hurt! - but more importantly you will activate the yeast community to the point that they will be prepared to begin the larger fermentation task more quickly after pitching. Jim is probably correct, then, if getting a quick start on fermentation is a desired goal, when he writes: >do your self a favor and culture up the Whitelabs yeast. I'm not a microbiologist so any corrections to the above are welcomed. As an aside, regarding what I called 'ripping off' and Jim refered to as "a 'jip'"(sic): The term really is "gyp" and is short for Gypsies, those wandering folks of yesteryear who were known for all manner of shysterism. Michael Gerholdt Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 1997 11:27:18 -0500 From: lheavner at tcmail.frco.com (Lou Heavner) Subject: comments on lautering Date: Fri, 10 Oct 1997 11:15:04 -0500 (CDT) From: Al Korzonas <korz at xnet.com> Subject: efficiency Alan found he had a bigger difference between an easymasher and slotted copper manifold than I did in my experiment. I'd like to suggest that the difference may be in the rate of taking the runnings. If you take the runnings quickly (I would call anything faster than 5 gallons in 45 minutes to be fast) there will be a bigger difference in efficiency than if you runoff slowly. You see, if the runnings come out slowly, the sparge water that is in the mashtun has time to extract sugars from the stagnant areas of the mash (by diffusion). If you run-off quickly, there is less time and more sugars remain in the stangnant areas. The larger the area from which runnings are taken, the smaller the areas of stagnant wort and the smaller the difference between fast run-off and slow. Al. Al Korzonas, Palos Hills, IL korz at xnet.com I too am an engineer and I think Al hit the nail here. Diffusion is the rate limiting factor. The amount and distribution of surface area at the grain/strainer interface will surely affect the concentration gradients in the liquid in the lauter tun. So maybe the issue becomes how long do I want to spend sparging? If I have 2 hours, the easy masher would be fine. If you only have 1 hour, maybe a phalse bottom would be a better choice. A slotted manifold probably falls in between. So other than time, I guess you just consider the cost and your threshold for tinkering when deciding on which option to use. Regardless, just make sure the sparge is slow enough to achieve the desired extraction given the other variables like crush for your particular system. That brings me to a hint that may help somebody just starting to do the all grain thang. I started with a phalse bottom and a gott cooler. I used a piece of racking tube and a stopper to drain the gott. Siphon hose connected the racking tube to the phalse bottom and another piece of tubing served as the drain line. I tried using one of those plastic tubing clamps as a pinch valve to control outflow. The result was a flow rate that was to fast, never could get clear runnings, or no flow at all. Solution: use two clamps in series. I could adjust them to achieve a very nice sparge rate. I also had the usual problem with larger batches causing the tubing in the gott to collapse. To fix that, I just used a longer piece of racking cane. That was before I hit the gold mine and did some work for a valve distributor who gave me a couple of stainless steel valves which I swaged up to some copper tubing. I still use the stopper and phalse bottom with copper tubing instead of racking cane, and it works great. I hope to get one of those nicely priced 7 gal gotts at the home depot for a hot water tank and put the 2nd valve into service before my next batch. Eat your hearts out friends.... No more spooning of sparge water! Regards, Lou <lheavneratfrmaildotfrcodotcom> Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 1997 12:20:44 -0500 (CDT) From: Steven Ensley <steve at globaldialog.com> Subject: How long is too long How long is too long to leave my beer in a single stage fermenter after the fermentation is apparently done? I got busy and have not had a chance to bottle. Plan to this weekend. It continued to ferment for a month and a half but now has been quiet for a few weeks. Has it already been sitting on its sediment for too long? Should I rack it over to a secondary now or since I am bottling soon, would the potential extra oxygenation be worse than leaving it on the dormant yeast for a few more days? Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 1997 12:38:02 From: Jay Reeves <jay at or.com> Subject: Re: Steinbier Fragmentation Grenades - ------------------------------ In HBD#2532, lordofbrewing at webtv.net (DAN PILLSBURY) says: (snippage of good advice) >When I got the hankering to brew a batch I went down to the local >landscape emporium and purchased 6-7 baseball sized pieces of pink Rocky >Mt. granite, cost was about $0.75. This is a much safer alternative and >pretty darn cheap to boot.... This is the same stuff I believe that Chuck Skypeck uses at Boscos Brewpub in Nashville and Memphis to brew his Steinbier. I believe Chuck and someone else wrote an article a few years back that was published in Zymurgy detailing all the info of Steinbier production at home, although I haven't seen it. I'm told there is info in there as to the types of rocks recommended, rock to wort ratio figures, techniques, and all other kinda good stuff. I believe Chuck was the first to commercially produce a true Steinbier in the US, and it was at Boscos in Memphis. If you get a chance, stop and try it - its nice. -Jay Reeves Huntsville, Alabama NOTE: Any replies need to manually change the "or" in the "reply to" field to "ro". For all you automated email spammers, here's the addresses of the FCC board members: Chmn. Reed Hunt: rhundt at fcc.gov Comm. James Quello: jQuello at fcc.gov Comm. Susan Ness: sness at fcc.gov Comm. Rachelle Chong: rchong at fcc.gov Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 1997 10:46:50 -0700 From: steinfiller at juno.com (Don H Van Valkenburg) Subject: STEINFILLER: Styles / / BEER JUDGE PROGRAMS (Part I) by Sam Piper The following was written by Sam Piper for the Barley Bandits News letter. It appeared in HBD two years ago and I feel it is still relivant to the current debate on styles. I am reprinting it with Sams permission with one caveat -- he said if written today it would be much different. Since Sam does not have a current email account, I am putting this out for him. I appologize about the bandwidth for those who have already read this. Private responses may be sent to him through me at: steinfiller at juno.com - -- BEER JUDGE PROGRAMS (Part I) by Sam Piper------ I once heard a comedian say, "If you're not going to kick a guy when he's down, then when are you? I guess if you're in a brawl, there's some sense to that. And right now the American Homebrewer's Association and the Home Wine & Beer Trade Association are brawling. Their Beer Judge Certification Program (or the AHA HWBTA BJCP, which is pronounced like an explosive sneeze, for the acronymicly gifted) has gone down for the count to be replaced by Ninkenski knows what. It seems the two associations can no longer stand the sight, smell, or suggestions of the other and reached for their dueling Pilsners. Plainly, this hobby isn't big enough for the both of them. So I think this is a good time for someone as caustic as myself to get in a few kicks. First, let's examine beer style categories. Most people think you need to have categories and beer style standards & definitions to have a contest and judge beer. I mean, how the hell are you going to fill out the damn score sheet if you don't have the standard of a category to compare an entry to? this could be utter chaos! If you don't have categories and standards, then all you can say is whether or not the beer you are judging looks good, tastes good, and if you would like to drink it again. Now if that ain't anarchy then God didn't make little green bombs and there ain't acid rain in Indianapolis. Just think of it. What if someone made a pale yellow barley wine? Well, right away you're in a fix because these suckers are suppose to be dark brown. Says so in the style book! Maybe the guy over filtered? Sorry Sam Warmack-- everybody knows you can't do Yellow Dog Wine. Toss it out. Spices? Bubble Gum has spices Piper-- give it to that kid selling the 1958 Mickey Mantle baseball card for $450 and maybe he'll cut you a deal. VIVA LA CONFORMITY! Well, listen up, ole horse drop, you say-- if standards and style definitions are so damn bad, did you ever try to judge the Specialties? How do you deal with all that nonsense? Apricot Lambic, indeed. Who ever herd of apricots in a salad dressing? But we do manage to judge Specialties, don't we! And how often does the specialty category end up either first or second in the "best of show" round? Could there be something to this Anarchy? The problem I have with beer judging and beer style categories and standards is that they are creative death. Nobody ever grew in life by always trying to copy someone else To copy is to exercise in technique and technique alone. Consider the American Pilsner, the white bread of beer, clone city. Any biologist trying to get the Nobel Prize for cloning should consider switching from poison frogs eggs to Pilsner beer kegs. (to be continued) Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 1997 10:56:46 -0700 From: steinfiller at juno.com (Don H Van Valkenburg) Subject: Styles--Beer Judge Programs (part 2) - ---Styles -- Beer Judge Programs (part 2) The problem I have with beer judging and beer style categories and standards is that they are creative death. Nobody ever grew in life by always trying to copy someone else To copy is to exercise in technique and technique alone. Consider the American Pilsner, the white bread of beer, clone city. Any biologist trying to get the Nobel Prize for cloning should consider switching from poison frogs eggs to Pilsner beer kegs. Who can tell one American Pilsner from another? This is progress? Since when is sheer banality and lack of product differentiation something to strive for? True, the labels, doods, and doodettes are all different. But consider the net effect of having a beer judge program with style STANDARDS and the encouragement of conformity to that standard: the emphasis is all on technique and copy. Any feature that makes a beer unique is in contrast to that style definition and counts against the entry. This process not only kicks an innovative brewer in the teeth, but it contaminates the expectations of the entire brewing community! Such emphasis on style standards reduces the sensibility of judges, those people who should be the champions of excellence, to being champions of conformity. Humbug! Humbug, I say! How did the "standard come to be in the first place? I would argue that the basis of any beverage-of any food, for that matter, is the attempt to make something good with the ingredients at hand. It's that simple. And When you can make something really good, and keep the price down, you've got a product. And when that product begins to be copied, you've got a "standard". It's flattering to the first maker, but not to the second! Can you imagine a master chef in any restaurant in the world who wants his Veal Florentine to be exactly like James Beard's ... or anyone else's? Hell no. It had better be different, it had better be excellent, and any gourmet should be prepared to appreciate both dimensions of the dish! The problem with judging and standards is what I call the American way of success death. Because rooted in a standard is the expectation of replication, o loss of individuality, of mass production for mass consumption by the masses of consumers. It's great for commodities, car parts and anything to do with manufacturing or repair. But in the world of arts and appreciation, a standard has to define a level of quality, not limiting characteristics. And where in all this is the role of education? Where is the responsibility to teach a beer maker to joyfully make his or her own unique beer? or even more important, where is the responsibility to teach the beer consumer to look for taste, to look for what is pleasing and gratifying, and to define those terms by experience of tasting the beer at hand and not by how closely that beer tastes like another? I am just sick of contest judges who fault stout beers for not tasting exactly like Guiness. The more we succumb to beer style standards, the less room there is for the individual, be that person a consumer, a brewer, or a business man. But there's still hope for the mass product junkie. I hear McDonald's will put in little syrup breweries so we can all have fresh McBeer to go with the McBurger du Jour. For a quality dining experience! Writen by, Sam Piper - ---------- Private responses may be sent to: Don Van Valkenburg Return to table of contents
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