HOMEBREW Digest #2566 Tue 25 November 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

  Spousal Approval (Kate Cone)
  Microscope/CO2 Generator/O2 and Yeast (AJ)
  Re: Reusing Bottle Yeast (Jim Wallace)
  Brewing tomes, bubble-gum, & justifiable expenses ("Raymond Estrella")
  corn sugar vs. corn / Blonde Ales / Cleaning tubing (George De Piro)
  dry hopping & infections (michael rose)
  some simple questions (michael rose)
  Go Cougs! (GuyG4)
  Compensating for hop A.A. loss during storage (dfikar)
  Indianapolis Brewing Co. (Jim Kirk)
  Coffee stout (Tim Dennis)
  Using Clinitest (Mark Tumarkin)
  Speciality Grains And Wort Boiling (Mike York)
  A little heavy on the hops...can I mellow it? (Mark Arneson)
  Lambic in bottles (Jeffrey_Glenn_York/UTK)
  Rakes... (Mark D Weaver)
  Bottling the Barleywine (scotty)
  Light "beer", corn and corn sugar... (Mark D Weaver)
  Boiling grain experts... (Some Guy)
  Eliminating the RIMS Stuck Mash (Kyle Druey)
  Sparging advice please ? (Luke.L.Morris)
  yeast slopes (Luke.L.Morris)
  RE: How to use hop pellets  (Aaron Spurlock ) (Andrew Quinzani)
  Sake Brewery in Kyoto ("Chris A. Smith")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Sat, 22 Nov 1997 09:43:33 -0500 (EST) From: katecone at ime.net (Kate Cone) Subject: Spousal Approval Just catching the tail end of this discussion. I had similar grumbles of "why do you want to homebrew?" from my husband last year. I replied that as a beer writer, I would have much more credibility if I knew at least what my fellow homebrewers went through. If I happened to make good beer in the bargain, so much the better. My brewing equipment was my Valentine's Day gift. (I ordered it). When my husband tasted the finished product, a nice pale ale, he became my best advocate for homebrewing. If we run out of my brew, he bugs me to keep brewing. When I won a blue ribbon, he needed a crane to lift his jaw off the ground, but that underscored even more my reasons for continuing. I think you just have to respect each other's hobbies. If your SO doesn't have any hobbies, and wants to spend every waking minute with you, my sympathies. But I think having to do all those dances of "I'll do chores if you "let" me brew" are ridiculous. Kate Cone "What's Brewing in New England." Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 22 Nov 1997 11:30:53 -0400 From: ajdel at mindspring.com (AJ) Subject: Microscope/CO2 Generator/O2 and Yeast Scott Murman asked what kind of microscope setup is required to identify the different strains of yeast. Such a system requires a special substage condenser (phase contrast), special objectives (phase contrast), ordinary oculars, ordinary eyeballs and a brain like Dan McConnell's. In other words, the 'scope must allow the user to distinguish the internal structures of the cell but only an experienced, knowledgeable, microscopist can be expected to come even close to distinguishing strains by their morphology. If you examine several strains you will notice morphological differences in things like shape, size, the way the cells clump (or dont clump) and so on. I've heard Dan say that he can recognize each of the strains he manages under the microscope but he works with these on a daily basis. I suppose it is like a farmer being able to recognize his individual cows (but yeast don't have those tags in their ears). I'm sure that I'd flunk if I were given slides of each of the strains with which I'm supposed to be familiar and were asked to identify them. So given that you can't practically identify strains with a microscope, how do you do it? Microbiologists have sophisticated techniques based on what the organism will or will not grow on, what metabaolites they produce, the appearance of colonies what "antibiotics" suppress growth and so on which they use to differentiate organisms. Most of these are beyond homebrewers. Confronted with, for example, a slant from our collection whose label has been somehow lost about the best we can do is brew with it and try to identify it by the beer it produces. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Oliver Weatherbee wrote suggesting that one could make a simple CO2 generator from a soda bottle filled with sugar and yeast. Being an impatient sort I would fill it with baking soda and vinegar. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Wayne Little asked about oxygen requirements of yeast. I'd almost rather discuss botulism. In a nutshell, it is generally accepted that while brewing yeast can respire they do not do so to an appreciable extent under normal brewery conditions. Note that I said "generally". Not everyone accepts that this is the case. Also note that definition of the term "respire" is the biochemist's to whom it means oxidative phosphorylation i.e. the transfer of electrons to molecular oxygen as the terminal acceptor. For a good reveiw of all this see Tracy Aquilla's article "The Biochemistry of Yeast" in the March/April (this year) Brewing Techniques. Numquam in dubio, saepe in errore. Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 22 Nov 1997 10:52:04 -0500 From: Jim Wallace <jwallace at crocker.com> Subject: Re: Reusing Bottle Yeast - --------"Fogdt, Michael" <MFogdt01 at sprintspectrum.com>--------------- particularly Hefe-Weizen. I can not get a definitive answer whether the yeast in the bottle is simply for conditioning, or whether it can be used to make a *terrific* wheat beer using authentic German yeast. That would be my ideal first brew - a medium bodied, cloudy and estery (phenolic?) banana- and clove-tasting wheat beer! - --------------------------------------------------------------------- So many of the HefeWeissens replace the estery fermenting yeast with a lager yeast for bottling. the only one I am sure of is Schneider for capturing and getting those phenolic/ester flavors. Wyeasts works just fine also. ___________________________________________ JIM WALLACE ... jwallace at crocker.com www.crocker.com/~jwallace ___________________________________________ Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 22 Nov 97 17:30:49 UT From: "Raymond Estrella" <ray-estrella at classic.msn.com> Subject: Brewing tomes, bubble-gum, & justifiable expenses Hello to all, Ellery Samuels asks for literary advice, >I would like to purchase some books as holiday gifts for homebrewing friends. >Most are what would be considered intermediate brewers (ie partial-mash >brews). Looking for books that would raise their knowledge (and mine too) >in areas such as: decoction mashing; protein rests; formulating recipes; >using adjuncts... Good question, a fellow member of the Minnesota homeBrewers Association, and National Judge, Steve Piatz and I were just discussing what three brewing related books we would pick if that was all that we could have. My choice was Dave Miller's "Homebrewing Guide", Noonen's "New Brewing Lager Beer", and Ray Daniels' " Designing Great Beers". It would be interesting to see what the collective would choose.......... Al K answers Ricks question about bubble-gum flavors, attributing it to Brettanomyces, possibly taking up residence in his fermenter...... >Whether it's Brett or not, the bottom line is it's the yeast. Don't >reuse the yeast if you don't like this aroma. I disagree with this statement. A bubble-gum character can be produced can be produced by the yeast, yes, especially the classic Belgians. But by experimenting with cooler fermentation temperatures you can cut this down. I do not think that this is a Brett. infection since the time it takes for Brett. to get a foothold, and start contributing to flavor profile takes longer than most of us are going to let a brew sit in a fermenter. It also contributes much more noticeable off-flavors besides the fruity bubble-gum ester. (Sourness, acidic, etc.) And finally, Alan answers Mike Lee's "justifiable expense" post, (What a great thread, you are now almost as infamous as the original botulism poster.) >My wife gives me 1 day per >week provided that I set aside my Sunday for just the 2 of us. First let me say that yes, you do save money. My wife did not drink beer until she started going out with me. Then she found out that beer could have flavor. All of a sudden the "heavy bodied red wine" drinker, wanted the "malty, full bodied ales". (No, no.. my wife is not heavy, or full bodied.... I'm dead....) Then we left my home in California to move to her birthplace of Minnesota, the land of sky blue waters.....Hamm's, Stroh's, Grain Belt, ad nausium. Try to buy a 6-pack of Samuel Smith's Oatmeal Stout and it costs $12, and it is major heat damaged, dusted, and skunked. (Yes, you can skunk a Stout if you keep it under fluorescent lights, at room temp. long enough.) So she was all for me deciding to try making all of our favorite brews. Any expenses that are accrued by my hobbies (Brewing and computers) comes from side jobs, or over-time. But the biggie comes in the form of "time spent". Like Alan, I only brew once a week, and only in the winter, which goes from Nov. to Tax-day in our part of the country. But what Alan is failing to recognize is the fact that though he only brews once a week, he has to rack beer from the primary to the secondary, and measure grain for the next batch, prepare water for tomorrow's brew session, keg / bottle the batch that is waiting, get ready the next yeast starter, bump up the last yeast starter........ oh yeah, I said this was the week that I am going to start WST'ing. This is a great hobby. Yeah it can get expensive, but if you are blowing money that you don't have then you should let her, or him, control the checkbook anyway. And it can get time expensive also. I have found that the more (brewing) you can do while the cat is away, the less the mouse has to (stressfully, emotionally) pay. Ray Estrella Cottage Grove, MN ray-estrella at msn.com ******** Never relax, constantly worry, have a better homebrew. ******** Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 22 Nov 1997 18:08:52 -0800 From: George De Piro <gdepiro at fcc.net> Subject: corn sugar vs. corn / Blonde Ales / Cleaning tubing Hi all, Bruce asks about using corn sugar instead of corn to lighten the taste of his beer to make it more palatable to his unenlightened friends. Corn sugar, as has been recently discussed here, will lighten the beer's body and flavor, but will make it cidery if used in excess. It will contribute no corn flavor. Corn, on the other hand, will also lighten the body of a beer. If you use a less processed form of it (such as cracked kernels or organic cornmeal), it will contribute a nice corny flavor that accentuates sweetness. It really is nice in some styles. Delano DuGarm published a nice article on corn and other adjuncts in the most recent issue of Brewing Techniques magazine. It is worth reading. - ------------------------------ Also on the lighter beer subject, Bob the Bugman (sorry, I couldn't resist) asked about blond ale. This is largely a brewpub style that is used as a "training wheels" brew for educating newcomers to craft beer. I make a tasty, yet unintimidating version using ~80% Weyermann Pils malt and 20% Weyermann's Light Munich malt. I decocotion mash my version, but you could infusion mash to get a lighter product. Hop lightly (15-18 IBU's), with an OG of about 12P (1.048). Use your favorite ale yeast. The resulting beer will be light tasting, but not at all bland. Malt and hops should both be noticeable, but light and balanced. It is very useful at parties. The addition of some corn would lighten it even more, and add some interesting flavor... - ------------------------------ Through all this talk about cleaning tubing nobody has mentioned a very easy method that works on plastic tubes and stainless, too. I use a .22 caliber rifle bore cleaner. You may want to get a bigger caliber for larger tubing, but 0.22 is perfect for the tubes in Corny kegs. If you've never cleaned the tubes in your kegs in this way, give it a try. You may be horrified at the amount of gunk that comes out! Have fun! George De Piro (Nyack, NY) Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 22 Nov 1997 15:14:31 -0800 From: michael rose <mrose at ucr.campus.mci.net> Subject: dry hopping & infections There was a short thread a while back about someone having infection problems only when they dry hopped. I went to dry hop my pilsner and noticed that the marbles (used to weight done the hop sack)were not glass but were instead some type of plastic. ( probably acrylic?) Lot of little scratches in them. Hope this helps. Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 22 Nov 1997 15:15:20 -0800 From: michael rose <mrose at ucr.campus.mci.net> Subject: some simple questions Some simple questions, 1) I want to make a sparkler (like what is on the end of a english beer engine) that will fit onto my picnic tap. I'm going to use it to dispense stouts, english ales and root beer. Anybody got a good design? 2)I made a batch of root beer and added a 1/2 cup malt extract for the *sole purpose of head retention.* I pre boiled the extract in a quart of water beforehand. Should I throw the hot break (protein) into the rootbeer or decant it off as in beer making? Is there anything else that will improve the head on root beer? 3) Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 23 Nov 1997 01:18:46 -0500 (EST) From: GuyG4 at aol.com Subject: Go Cougs! During today's Apple Cup, in which the mighty WSU Cougars prevailed over the honorable and worthy Huskies, thus earning their first trip to the Rose Bowl in 67 years, I brewed the following beer. I will be consuming this beer in the company of friends as, on New Year's Day, we face the powerful blue and maize of Michigan. Dedicated to the "fat five", Messrs. McShane and McEndoo and company, who have controlled the line of scrimmage through this magnificent season. Your efforts have not gone unnoticed. Lightning Creek Crimson and Grey ESB 2.00 oz. American Chocolate 1.00 lb. American Crystal 40L 1.00 lb. American Munich (Light) 8.00 lb. American Two-Row 0.50 lb. American Two-Row Toasted Hops: 1.00 oz. Cascade 7.2% 60 min 1.00 oz. Fuggles 6.9% 10 min Protein Rest 30 min. at 122F, raise to 158F for 1 hour. Mashout 170F. Flysparge with 16 qts. hot water, boil 1 hour. Hop as noted. Pitch 2 packages Danstar London yeast. OG 1.058, FG predicted 1.013 And, yeah, I was going for a heavy scottish. The school which played the first Rose Bowl, will this year play the last real Rose Bowl. All alums hold their heads high at because of the courage and integrity of these young men. Best of luck on New Years Day. Go Cougs! GuyG4 at aol.com Guy Gregory WSU '79 Lightning Creek Home Brewery Spokane, WA Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 23 Nov 1997 09:32:09 -0600 (CST) From: dfikar at flash.net Subject: Compensating for hop A.A. loss during storage The Zymurgy Hops special issue discussed an elaborate adjustment that one can make to account for hop alpha acid loss during storage when calculating IBUs. In practice, how important is the adjustment if you use the hops within a few months, keep them refrigerated, and use oxygen-barrier containers? Seems like I remember reading that even if there is some alpha acid degradation it will be at least partially offset by bitterness gains from oxidized beta acids. Also, isn't it true that some types of noble hops actually become *better* following some degree of aging/oxidation? - --------------------------------------------- Dean Fikar - Ft. Worth, TX (dfikar at flash.net) Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 23 Nov 1997 11:04:58 -0500 From: Jim Kirk <captain at iquest.net> Subject: Indianapolis Brewing Co. The Indianapolis Brewing Co. has closed it's doors. The equipment was purchased by the Oaken Barrel Brewpub to be used as their microbrewery. ______________________________________________________________________ Jim Kirk captain at iquest.net http://www.iquest.net/~captain/ Interested in Homebrewing? Check out http://www.geocities.com/NapaValley/7755/ "Listening to someone who brews his own beer is like listening to a religious fanatic talk about the day he saw the light." - Ross Murray _______________________________________________________________________ Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 23 Nov 1997 11:31:07 -0800 From: timd at blazenet.net (Tim Dennis) Subject: Coffee stout I'm going to brew a stout on my first anniversary next week. I've decided to use coffee in this batch. Through some research, I've seen different amounts being used, and different methods. For example: brew up 10 cups of coffee and add to brew kettle at the end of the boil, or to place ground coffee in muslin bag and steep at end of boil. To me, these methods are very similar, the quantity is what I'm not sure of. The results I'm after, would be to acknowledge the presence of coffee without taking away the beer character. I would appreciate any information on your experiences with adding coffee to a stout. I've also been looking for hazelnut extract locally, I did use a hazelnut flavoring in an English brown ale I recently brewed. The flavoring had some extracts in it. Would pure extract be better, and is it at all available? Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 23 Nov 1997 12:26:37 -0500 From: Mark Tumarkin <tumarkin at mindspring.com> Subject: Using Clinitest Hi Dave Burley (and anyone else who can help advise me), I have a batch of porter that seems to be stuck at about 1.021. I didn't think it was quite done but wanted to be sure. It has been at that gravity for 7-10 days. So I thought this might be a good time to try using the Clinitest. My local pharmacy had one in stock so I got it and then did a search of the HBD archives to find the posts in which you had discussed the method for using it. I found your instructions - you mentioned using 10 drops of beer and then in a later post said oops, and that it should have been 5 drops. You also said using 10 drops would be more exact but to divide the results by 2. If I understand this, you meant that if the test then showed 1%, it would really be at 1/2 %. Is that correct? Using 5 drops, my reading comes out at 1%. So it still needs to ferment more. Since it has not changed even though I brought it into the house for a warmer temp, and also swirled it a bit, I am thinking of adding more yeast. Is this what you would suggest? Also you had mentioned the alternative of bottling with a higher remaining percentage of fermentable sugars and modifying the amount of sugar added for priming. Would you please give me a little guidance on how to figure this as well? There has been some talk in the digest recently concerning bottling versus fermenting strains of yeast, especially in some of the Belgian ales. Is this usually done when the beer is filtered? In my case, I am thinking of doing this because my yeast seem to be partied out. What issues should I be aware of in this case. I am assuming that my starter should be relatively small, compared to starting a new batch, otherwise I would think you would get more yeast than normal settling out in the bottles. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Mark Tumarkin The Brewery in the Jungle Gainesville, FL Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 23 Nov 1997 12:46:40 From: Mike York <myork at asheboro.com> Subject: Speciality Grains And Wort Boiling A great big thank you to the following excellent homebrewers concerning the wort boiling process: Scott Kaczorowski, Long Beach, CA--Dan Johnson, Willow Springs, NC--Brian Pickerill--Bryan L. Gros, Oakland, CA--Charley Burns, N.Cal--Dave Bartz, Indianapolis, IN--Ray Estrella, Cottage Grove, MN The HBD must have the most helpful, considerate, knowledgeable people in the world: What a powerful mailing list for the wonderful hobby of homebrewing. Please allow me to quote another expert Charlie Papazian taken from his, "The New Complete Joy Of Homebrewing" - ---The most effective way to introduce the goodness of specialty grains in malt extract brewing is to add the cracked grains to the cold water as it is being brought to a boil. Just before the water comes to a boil, simply use a small kitchen strainer and remove as much as possible without undue fuss. You will find that you can easily remove 80-90 percent of the grains. It's that simple! After the specialty grains are removed from the water, add your malt extract, minerals, boiling hops and all other sugars. So, as you continue to heat and bring your wort back to a boil, use your spoon to stir well and dissolve all of the ingredients so they won't stick and scorch on the bottom of the brew pot. You will want to time your boil from when it begins with all of the ingredients. Usually 1/2-1 hour is an adequate time for boiling your wort. Hops that are used as flavor or aromatic finishing hops should be added during the final 1-10 minutes of the boil. Generally, flavor will be extracted and preserved for not longer than 10 minutes of boiling. The aromatics of hops will be dissipated more quickly and should be allowed to steep for only 1-2 minutes if hop bouquet is desired in the finished beer.--- Thanks again for all of you who take the time to share. Happy Brewing, Mike William Mike York Jr. "Shagging Forever" 129 Vaughn York Rd. Staley, NC 27355 910 824-8937 myork at asheboro.com Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 23 Nov 1997 15:45:58 -0500 From: Mark Arneson <marnes at hom.net> Subject: A little heavy on the hops...can I mellow it? Greetings All, I just made a pumpkin ale and a sweet stout last weekend I miscalculated the amount of perl hops to put into the pumpkin ale. It turned out more IPA-ish. I can smell and taste the pumpkin and spices, but the hops are kind of overpowering. Is there a way I can mellow it out? (the stout, on the other hand, is going to be excellent) BTW...on the issue of spousal approval for home brewing, My wife was MORE than happy to help me spend over $300.00 to get a Sabco keg/burner outfit to move the whole process into the garage and OUT of her kitchen. Now she's even getting me a grain mill for X-mas. ; ) Thanks in advance for any advise. Mark Arneson Macon, GA marnes at bigfoot.com Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 23 Nov 1997 19:04:30 -0500 From: Jeffrey_Glenn_York/UTK at ln.utk.edu Subject: Lambic in bottles I just bottled my first lambic on 11/3/97 and there is white mold forming on the surface and around the neck. Normally, I would discount this to poor sanitation and hope it didn't taste god-awful, but since this is lambic I am at a bit of a loss. The brew was made following Papazian's recipe in "Homebrewer's Companion," p. 295, using the Wyeast Lambic blend. Brewed on 3/11/97, racked 3/31 off the fruit, bulk aged until11/3/97. Anybody else know anything about this? I'm striving to not worry, but that mold is some nasty looking stuff. Jeff York - in Knoxville, TN- jeffyork at utk.edu Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 23 Nov 1997 19:22:20 -0800 From: headbrewer at juno.com (Mark D Weaver) Subject: Rakes... Al, In addition, when doing a decoction, the rakes are used so as to distribute the hot decocted mash evenly temperature wise and so as not to destroy the enzymes, it's also why the decocted grains are added in slowly. I know someone who works for AB, I could ask as to their practices regarding their cereal (mash) cookers..... Regards, Mark (O=00=O) / (o--tii-o) (O=00=O) / (D D) Mark Weaver - Brewer on the Loose - : headbrewer at juno.com or AwfulQuiet at aol.com >Brewers who use decoction mashes (according to The Biotechnology of >Malting and Brewing, by Hough) need to run their rakes because the boiling >of the decoctions removes all the entrained air from the mash which >makes the grain bed lose its bouyancy. I'm pretty sure that Miller Brewing >doesn't use decoction mashes, but they do use cereal-cookers which boil >the adjuncts and *part* of the barley malt. I presume that this boils >enough of the entrained air out of the mash to require rakes. >To me, the bottom line is this: if you can get by without rakes, do. >Al. Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 23 Nov 1997 16:31:30 +0000 From: scotty at enaila.nidlink.com Subject: Bottling the Barleywine Hello all, You may remember about a month ago, I asked about Rogue yeast for a barleywine. Well, I made the beer and found out some things in the process. I use a 32 qt enamel pot across two burners on my gas kitchen stove to boil. I found that with 24# of grain (my system isn't super efficient...usually around 70%) I couldn't collect near enough wort to effectively boil down to reach my target gravity(1.100). I ended up putting about 7.5 gallons in my enamel pot and about 4.5 gallons in my old stainless pot left over from extract brewing. I ended up with a dismal 1.084 post boil OG. I added a couple of pounds of malt extract syrup (boiled in a little water) to get the gravity where I wanted. I used a yeast cake left over from a pale ale I made with the Rogue yeast. I generally use a 7 gallon carboy for primary fermentation. Well, I was lucky and the carboy didn't blow up. I didn't expect the yeast to take off with such vigor. Anyway, I had a few questions regarding this thing. I airated well, but the fermentation seems to have ended around 1.026. Is this a reasonable final gravity? I added some more yeast to this thing to see in that might help and it doesn't seem to have done much. If this thing is approaching the finale, I would like some advise on how to bottle this stuff. I have come up with three alternatives: 1. Add priming sugar and bottle (hope that there is enough yeast in solution). 2. Add more yeast and sugar and bottle (probably a qt starter) 3. Keg, force carbonate, and bottle I am leaning toward force carbonation. I would like to know if this would be detrimental to the beer. Will it have an effect on how it ages? Thanks for all your help. Scott Rohlf scotty at nidlink dot com Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 23 Nov 1997 19:35:08 -0800 From: headbrewer at juno.com (Mark D Weaver) Subject: Light "beer", corn and corn sugar... Bruce, I know what I am suggesting isn't really for "ales", but have you tried decocting part of the mash? The extracted "grain flavour" / tannins give the beer a nice grain finish, rather tasty I think.... Regards, Mark (O=00=O) / (o--tii-o) (O=00=O) / (D D) Mark Weaver - Brewer on the Loose - : headbrewer at juno.com or AwfulQuiet at aol.com >> I've been brewing for about 10 years, the last few have been all-grain. I've made lots of great beer since I went to all-grain, stouts, browns, fruit-ales, wheats, oktoberfest, even a great smoked ale. The only type I have had trouble with is making a tasty LIGHT ale. I know this sounds like an oxymoron, but I have had homebrew that falls into this category. I've tried using rice as an adjunct but I don't like it's flavor contribution (even though the literature says it has none). I was thinking of trying corn, but then why not skip the corn and just add a couple of pounds of corn sugar like I did years ago when I first started brewing with kits. It should thin out the flavor without changing it, right? Does anyone want to admit that they have done this? I need this beer for my beer-taste-deprived friends (OK, OK, I'll be drinking it too). Any comments would be appreciated. If you could send your response to the digest and me so I would be sure not to miss it. Bruce Taber Almonte, Ontario, Canada bruce.taber at nrc.ca Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 23 Nov 1997 19:55:23 -0500 (EST) From: Some Guy <pbabcock at oeonline.com> Subject: Boiling grain experts... Greetings, Beerlings! Take me to your lager... Mike York says: "Please allow me to quote another expert" Sure! Go right ahead! "Charlie Papazian" He's an expert? When did that happen? "taken from his," ...generally old and outdated... "'The New Complete Joy Of Homebrewing' - ---The most effective way to introduce the goodness of specialty grains in malt extract brewing is to add the cracked grains to the cold water as it is being brought to a boil. Just before the water comes to a boil, simply use a small kitchen strainer and remove as much as possible without undue fuss." As evidenced by this "advice". Frankly, Mike, I'm not sure why you are quoting this. To make those that offered help appear as asses? To show CP as an ass? Dunno. Anyway, "just before the water comes to a boil" should read "at or below about 170'F" (which is significantly more before boiling than CP's advice might imply). Boiling grains is a no-no. You will get more in your beer than "the goodness of specialty grains" by following the "just before the water comes to a boil" advice. Try this: If including anything but completely converted grains (completely converted grains can simply be soaked in water at or below 170'F to extract the sugars), put cracked grains into a grain bag and tie off. Put into a pot of water at around 158'F - use about a quart of water per pound of grain - and hold it there for about 45 minutes. Remove the bag. If you want, you can rinse the bag and grains with about half the original quantity of water at or below 170'F. Now, in another pot, mix your extracts with cool water. Stir, stir, stir. Add the liquid from your grains. bring to a boil while stirring (as usual) and you're off to the races! By the way, an expert is an expert because s/he wants to be. The goal to become expert drives them to make sacrifices for their chosen field of expertise and to keep both on top of it and in front of it, growing with the changes in opinion, craft and technology. From what I've seen of CP of late, using this definition as a yardstick, his days of expertise are long past. He should concentrate on sucking the life blood out of the AOB (his current field of expertise) and leave the brewing to those who like to do it. If it weren't for the fact that TCJOHB and THBC were written in such a friendly (if not eccentric - "Beer Worlds"? Really...) style, I wouldn't even think to recommend them to beginning brewers at all. Maybe, based on this exchange, I shouldn't. See ya! Pat Babcock in SE Michigan pbabcock at oeonline.com Home Brew Digest Janitor janitor@hbd.org HBD Web Site http://hbd.org The Home Brew Page http://oeonline.com/~pbabcock/brew.html Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 24 Nov 1997 00:55:02 -0800 From: Kyle Druey <kdldmd at lightspeed.net> Subject: Eliminating the RIMS Stuck Mash Frustrated HBD RIMS Users, Are you beginning to think that RIMS is a myth? Have you seen all those great RIMS web pages and wondered if those pictures are real? If so I have some information to share on how you can possibly eliminate or greatly reduce your RIMS stuck mashes. After eleven late night RIMS brewing sessions from hell, and after consulting with the numerous HBD RIMS gurus, I have finally solved my RIMS stuck mash problems. I spent alot of time researching and experimenting, so I thought sharing this info could perhaps save somebody some time and frustration. Here are the top 10 suggestions for eliminating your RIMS stuck mash: 1) Use a coarse crush. I think this is the missing link for eliminating the RIMS stuck mash. The only hitch is that you must own or have access to an adjustable malt mill. I use Dave Burley's two pass crush: the first pass is at a setting on 0.08", and the second pass is at 0.06". You will not lose extraction with this coarser crush, and it will allow the wort to flow more easily through the grain bed. You will probably always have RIMS stuck mash problems if you rely on the homebrew shop to crush your grain. 2) Use a thick mash. I have had very good success with a water to malt ratio of 0.9 qts/lb. More water is not necissarily better for RIMS. You want to float the grain bed while you are recirculating, the same concept as when you sparge. If too much water is in the mash it will have a tendency to compact the grain bed and sit on top of the grain. You need to try this to actually believe it! Using less water will also increase your temp rise rate. It now takes me about 10 to 15 minutes to raise the temp from 140 to 158. 3) Have adequate percent open area on your false bottom. The common household kitchen strainer is about 50% open area and seems to be about the right to get an adequate flow rate through the grain bed, without allowing the grain to pass through. I know some people have success using Phils PB, but I did not have the same luck. My PPB is now attached to my return manifold and acts as a baffle so that the grain bed is not disturbed. McMaster-Carr has an excellent selection of ss screen for about $5 for a 12" X 12" sheet, you can order it on line. 4) Use rigid suction piping. I used to use braided vinyl but it would close up when the mash started to stick. I now use 1/2" copper pipe. 5) Have variable speed control on your pump. Use a fan motor speed controller, and always start the RIMS mash very slowly. Only increase the fow rate during temperature boosts, and slow the pump back down when you hit your rest temperature. A ball valve down stream of the pump discharge can also be used to control the flow rate. 6) Use a verical leg on your suction piping. I use a piece of braided SS mesh sheath. One end of the sheath is attached to a float which causes it to always remain just below the surface of the mash. This concept is similar to a "floating swing line" that is used on oil refinery storage tanks. The other end of the sheath is connected to a Tee beneath the false bottom. The other side of the Tee has an Ell attached to it which pulls suction from the wort that has collected beneath the false bottom via gravity flow. What I noticed during a set mash is that the mash water sits on top of the compacted grain bed. When this starts to happen the vertical suction leg then kicks in and pulls the water off the top of the grain bed. This then relieves the set mash condition, and allows the mash water to gravity flow once again. The pump will normally pull suction beneath the false bottom because that side of the suction Tee has less head loss through it than the vertical leg does (the ss mesh sheath). 7) Use a rectangluar cooler for a RIMS tun. This will allow for a grain bed that is not as deep as when a round cooler is used. A more shallow grain bed will allow the mash water to flow more easily through the grain bed. 8) Incorporate a 30' Glucinase rest at 104 F. This is supposed to reduce the viscosity of the mash and allow it to flow easier. 9) Do not stir. The only time you should stir is when you are doughing in the grist. Stirring during a RIMS mash only disturbs the grain bed. Not stirring is the other big benefit of using a RIMS (the first benefit is precise temperature control). 10) Have several homebrews while RIMSing. This may not eliminate your stuck mash but it will help you to forget about it. Hope this list helps somebody. I know that when my RIMS works the way it is supposed to it is a step mashing dream..... precise temperature control, multiple rests, no stirring, smooth tasting wort! Happy RIMSing. Kyle Druey brewing in Bakersfield, CA rehabilitated RIMS schizophrenic enjoying my Bavarian Weissbier which used a 30' 111 F ferulic acid rest to get that big clove taste Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 24 Nov 97 16:50:34 +0800 From: Luke.L.Morris at woodside.com.au Subject: Sparging advice please ? Hiya, I've been all-grain brewing for about a year now, and I've ironed out most of the bugs in my process, so brew-day is not as nerve-wracking as it used to be. But I'm yet to find a means of sparging that I'm happy with. I thought maybe someone out there could offer me a few tips. Sparging techniques I have tried... First batch: I mashed in a picnic cooler and transferred to a separate lauter tun with a grain bag fitted inside. By the time I started sparging the grain bed was down to 55C (131F). No amount of sparging with hot water would bring the temperature up again. Lousy efficiency. Messy operation. Never again. Invested in a Gott cooler with Phil's phalse bottom and Phil's spargy whirly thing. Subsequent batches: Mashed in Gott cooler with phalse bottom etc. First batch prepared sparge water at 77C (170F) and began sparging. Heat losses between the water supply and the grain bed caused sparge water temperature drop, and final grain bed temperature was very low. Subsequent batches prepared sparge water at boiling, and heat losses caused top of grain bed to see sparge water between 70 and 75C (158F and 167F). Final grain bed temperatures about 70C. Figured most of the heat was being lost out the top of the cooler while the whirly-thing was going. Spraying the hot water also must allow a lot of the water's heat to escape. Last two batches: Added boiling water from my kettle directly to the top of the mash while drawing liquid off the bottom. Kept the lid on the Gott to retain heat (took the lid off to top up the water every 5-10 minutes of course). Final grain bed temperatures 77C (170F) and 79C (174F) respectively for the two batches. Pouring in the boiling water disturbed the top of the grain bed, but apparently not the base since I saw no reduced clarity of the malt liquor. These two batches fermenting now. Questions: i) Do I need to "mash out" to 77C (170F) before beginning the sparge ? I guess this would help my temperature control problems somewhat, but so far I have figured that the increased temperature of the sparge water would be sufficient, ideally ending up with a grain bed temp of 77C (170F) to maximise extraction efficiency without extracting "nasties". ii) Does pouring boiling water on top of the grain bed adversely affect the end result ? And to what extent ? I realise that boiling the grains extracts undesirable stuff. But if these dissolve in the water at temperatures >77C (>170F), will they not precipitate back out as they pass through the cooler grain bed below ? iii) How significant is my disturbance of the top of the grain bed ? I keep sticking a thermometer in it anyway. iv) Can anyone suggest to me a better way of managing my sparging. Somebody out there must have this one figured out without the need for heaps of expensive kit (ie. anyone who wants to talk me into a RIMS will be unsuccessful. PS, What exactly does RIMS stand for ?). I brew 5-gallon batches in a 10-gallon Gott cooler with a phalse bottom. I have a solar hot water system which means my hot water temperature can be anything from 45C to 90+C (113F to 194+F) depending on the weather. So my only reliable source of really hot water is a 1.5 litre (3 pint) slow electric kettle. Or a big pot on a stove, which I can do. Response by private e-mail preferred, to luke.morris at woodside.com.au Thanks for any help you can provide. Regards, Luke Morris Brewing in Perth, Western Australia. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 24 Nov 97 17:02:34 +0800 From: Luke.L.Morris at woodside.com.au Subject: yeast slopes Hello again, There has been some talk in the last few HBDs about making slopes for yeast culturing. (ie. how to do it, re-using the slopes etc etc). I made my own slopes a few times, and though it wasn't hard, I found it time-consuming and messy. Maybe I was doing it wrong. But I still wanted to culture yeast (because liquid yeast is too expensive to use once only !). So I approached a microbiological lab supply company. They are able to supply me with prepared 5ml slopes at a cost of A$9.60 (about US$7.10) for a box of 10. The slopes are guaranteed sterile. They are purpose made for yeast culturing and are prepared with potato dextrose agar which has been acidified slightly to discourage bacterial growth. No doubt you could find a similar supplier in your region. If you prefer to make your own slopes, that's great, but this really suited me. Regards, Luke Morris Brewing in Perth, Western Australia. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 24 Nov 1997 08:19:25 -0500 From: Andrew Quinzani <quinzani at mdc.net> Subject: RE: How to use hop pellets (Aaron Spurlock ) Date: Thu, 20 Nov 1997 15:27:54 -0800 From: "Aaron Spurlock" <spurlock at azlink.com> Subject: How to use Hop Pellets? >I boiled the wort with the pellet hops, and cooled the wort over about 30-40 >minutes to 68F in an ice bath. Once that was done, I stirred the wort in a >circle to get all the "gunk" into the center of the pot, This is cold break, you should remove it as soon as it forms. While boiling, the foamy gunk that pops up is hot break, this too should be skimmed off as it forms. > wrapped my siphon >uptake tube in my fine mesh bag, and started the siphon in the bottom corner >of the pot. Well, the hop "slime" soon coated the entire bag, stopping any >further flow through it and my siphon died. Yeah, been there, done that. >I then tried pouring the cooled wort through my funnel, straining out the >hop slime. It was soon coated, and I resorted to a method of pour, clean the >strainer, pour, clean the strainer... Done that too. >1. Did I need to worry about separating the pellet hops from the wort for >fermentation? Yes, you want to remove all the "stuff" you can. >Should I have done a trub removal by putting the wort in my >carboy for 12-hours, and then immediately racking into my primary fermenter >instead? Never tried that one, I don't think so.... >2. Should I use the whole hops instead? Are they easier to work with? I use plugs whenever I can and drop them into a chesse cloth bag, that way all the stuff is already seperated. Be sure to keep the bag well off the bottom of the pot or it will get stuck and melt to the bottom (done that too!) >3. Is it better to siphon out of the boiler? I like the idea of using the >"inline aerator" so siphoning seems attractive. I thought the "whirlpool" >and siphoning through a bag would work, but... I always did it that way before I went to my 15 gal. converted keg and it has a 3/4" ball valve on the side for emptying the pot. >4. Non-related question--what about sanitizing a frozen 2-liter bottle of i>ce and plopping it into hot wort to cool? This is suggested in Lee Janson's >book "Brew Chem 101". I assume you are talking about boiling this water to sanitize it? I suppose. You want to keep in mind that you do not want to mix air into the wort untill it is cooled, off flavors and other nasty things could result. >Thanks for keeping me going and educating me! Soon I can help answer >questions instead of just ask! Thats where we all started! -=Q=- "Q" Brew Brewery...Home of Hairy Chest Ale - ------------------------------------------------------------ quinzani at mdc.net Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 24 Nov 1997 22:13:44 +1300 From: "Chris A. Smith" <casmith at metro.telecom.samsung.co.kr> Subject: Sake Brewery in Kyoto (Now here's a stab in the dark:) I headed for Kyoto, Japan next month for vacation and I'd like to tour a sake brewery, preferably one that has English- or Korean-speaking guides. Anybody have any suggestions on breweries or how to go about finding one? Thanks. - -- Chris A. Smith Switching Systems Group Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. Seoul, Korea Return to table of contents
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