HOMEBREW Digest #2979 Tue 16 March 1999

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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

  100 Gallon limit broken! dont do it (DakBrew)
  oatmalt stout results ("Ratkiewich, Peter")
  6 oz. bottles (Peter Bertone)
  1st Annual Palmetto State Brewers' Open (chatgros)
  IBU standard... ("D.B. Metallo")
  chitosan (David Whitman)
  EKU Lager yeast (Andrew Stavrolakis)
  mills, backdoor, 100gal++, carboys. (Joe Rolfe)
  Aluminum Screen in a brew pot? (Joy Hansen)
  chitosan (Domenick Venezia)
  copper scrubby problems (Elijah Daniel)
  Water transfers to gott coolers (Eric Reimer)
  Oat Malt % in 6 Grain Stout ("Philip J Wilcox")
  starters (Bryan Gros)
  Split session brewing (Greg Remake)
  homebrew shops vs. backdoor black market (Boeing)" <BayerMA at navair.navy.mil>
  RE: Backdoor Dealings... (LaBorde, Ronald)
  Correction/Minimashs/Water/Iodine (AJ)
  What the AHA is for (Paul Gatza)
  Re: Fred Garvin Seminars (Tim Anderson)
  backdoor dealings, con't. ("Marc Sedam")
  Decline of Homebrewing (Dan Listermann)
  Where to get 6oz bottles for barleywine (Alan Edwards)
  Food processing grain ("Robert C. McDonald")

Beer is our obsession and we're late for therapy! Madison Homebrewers and Tasters Guild's 13th annual Big and Huge - 28 March 1999: Rules and forms at www.globaldialog.com/madbrewers Send articles for __publication_only__ to post@hbd.org If your e-mail account is being deleted, please unsubscribe first!! To SUBSCRIBE or UNSUBSCRIBE send an e-mail message with the word "subscribe" or "unsubscribe" to request@hbd.org. **SUBSCRIBE AND UNSUBSCRIBE REQUESTS MUST BE SENT FROM THE E-MAIL ACCOUNT YOU WISH TO HAVE SUBSCRIBED OR UNSUBSCRIBED!!!** IF YOU HAVE SPAM-PROOFED your e-mail address, the autoresponder and the SUBSCRIBE/UNSUBSCRIBE commands will fail! Contact brewery at hbd.org for information regarding the "Cat's Meow" Back issues are available via: HTML from... http://hbd.org Anonymous ftp from... ftp://hbd.org/pub/hbd/digests ftp://ftp.stanford.edu/pub/clubs/homebrew/beer AFS users can find it under... /afs/ir.stanford.edu/ftp/pub/clubs/homebrew/beer COPYRIGHT for the Digest as a collection is currently held by hbd.org (Pat Babcock and Karl Lutzen). Digests in their entirity CANNOT be reprinted/reproduced without this entire header section unless EXPRESS written permission has been obtained from hbd.org. Digests CANNOT be reprinted or reproduced in any format for redistribution unless said redistribution is at absolutely NO COST to the consumer. COPYRIGHT for individual posts within each Digest is held by the author. Articles cannot be extracted from the Digest and reprinted/reproduced without the EXPRESS written permission of the author. The author and HBD must be attributed as author and source in any such reprint/reproduction. (Note: QUOTING of items originally appearing in the Digest in a subsequent Digest is exempt from the above. Home brew clubs NOT associated with organizations having a commercial interest in beer or brewing may republish articles in their newsletters and/or websites provided that the author and HBD are attributed. ASKING first is still a great courtesy...) JANITORS on duty: Pat Babcock and Karl Lutzen (janitor@hbd.org)
---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 06:46:12 EST From: DakBrew at aol.com Subject: 100 Gallon limit broken! dont do it >>WayneM38 at aol.com sez.... >>Then there is that 100 gal limit........ >Tha one's easy: just get married! It doubles it!See ya! >Pat Babcock in SE Michigan Don't do it Wayne The rule is 200 GL for a 2 adult Household. I take this to mean Girlfriend, Roommate, or anyone as long as there are 2 adults residing in the house. No need to potentially ruin your life for 100 GL of beer per year. Dan Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 08:16:01 -0500 From: "Ratkiewich, Peter" <PRATKIEWICH at ci.westport.ct.us> Subject: oatmalt stout results Many thanks to all the providers of Oatmeal stout recipes that have been sent over the past week. After considering them all my partner and I decided to go with a recipe based on oat malt rather than oatmeal. (we were going to do two batches one with oat malt and one with oat meal, but upon receiving the 55 lb bag of oat malt, we figured it would be better to put a dent in the bag....). Anyway, this is the recipe we ended up using. We run dual 15 gallon setups, one a conventional gravity system, and one a PBS - MRS. For each 15 gal. batch: 22# Maris Otter Pale 8# Thomas Fawcett malted oats 2# Roasted Barley # Chocolate Malt # Wheat 4# 120l-150l M&F Crystal We've dubbed this as our "Six grain Oatmalt Stout". Pretty original eh! Also somewhat complicated of an ale. First the grist bill had to be ground in two stages. We ground all the grains but the oatmalt at our normal setting on the jsp mill. ( that being the "magic" setting where the tick mark is straight up and down). The oat malt however is slightly smaller in diameter and much softer than the other grains. In addition, according to the maltster's notes, (thank you Sir Renner), they recommend a smaller setting, approximatly 70-80 % of the "normal setting". Being rather simple Neanderthal style brewers, we adjusted the jsp mill to it's smallest setting by turning the eccentric adjusting screw until the rollers came to there closest point. The gap appeared to be about of the normal gap so we went with it. We don't split hairs about these things. The small setting worked excellent on the oat malt. Now the other trick we employed was that we setup, ground and mashed in on Saturday night. Using a single infusion, we struck in with 7 gallons at 168 degrees. We were looking for a stiff mash, and definitely achieved it. (By the way if you want a work out some day, try mashing in 37-1/2 ponds with just 7 gallons. It took almost an hour just to get everything un-lumped.) Around 11pm we finally stabilized at a mash temp of about 155 degrees. At this point we wrapped these big insulated moving blankets around the SS mash tuns and called it quits for the night. The theory being that you can't mash for too long, and that somewhere during the night the mash would pass through the entire temperature range from 155 to 148. Morning arrived and at 7:30 AM both mash tuns were hovering around 140 degrees. We took an hour to bring the temp back up to mash out at 168, using water additions and slow heating. We opted for a step runoff rather than a continuous sparge. We measured the SG at each runnings. First was 1104, second was 1100 and third was 1060. Bear in mind that the SUDS program predicted an OG for this grain bill of 1061! I guess we got a better extraction than the 75% I had estimated. It took about 1 hours to do all three runnings. In our 90 minute boil we used 1 oz. of 17.2%AA yakima german magnum hops at 0min and 30 min into the boil. We continued with 5%AA Cascade, 1 oz ea. at 45, 60, and 75 minutes. OG on this ale was 1090. We pitched with a wad of 1056 yeast that we had harvested from last month's batch and stored. We're shootin for a FG of about 1020. Our yield, starting with a fifteen gallon recipe was 12 gallons each for a total of 24 gallons. The unfermented liquid tastes very smooth, slightly burnt from the roasted barley, and has a good base bitterness from the Magnum hops. So we still have about 39 pounds of this oatmalt. We were thinking of making a 50-50 grain mix with oatmalt and pale, and see what we come up with. Happy brewing! Pete Ratkiewich, Milford, CT Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 09:17:49 -0500 (EST) From: Peter Bertone <bertone at physics.unc.edu> Subject: 6 oz. bottles On Mon, 15 Mar 1999 in HBD #2978, Thomas Murray wrote: > Does anyone know of a source for 6oz bottles. It's about time to bottle my > barleywine. > Presque Isle Wine Cellars sells 187 mL (about 6.4 oz.) champagne bottles (catalog #W187). They come 24 to a case. The price is $7.30 per case. If I'm not mistaken these bottles can be crown capped. PIWC's phone number is 814-725-1314 (info) 800-488-7492 (orders), email <prwc at erie.net> . I hope this helps. Peter Bertone Chapel Hill, NC Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 06:24:33 PST From: chatgros at excite.com Subject: 1st Annual Palmetto State Brewers' Open April 10, 1999 Beulah's Bar and Grill, Columbia, SC Entry Deadline: April 6, 1999 (forms and money) All Categories, Ale, Lager, Mixed, Cider, Mead AHA/BJCP Sanctioned 1999 AHA style guidelines Info: http://www.axs2k.net/fatcat/psbflyer.htm E-mail: chatgros at mailexcite.com _______________________________________________________ Get your free, private email at http://mail.excite.com/ Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 08:44:02 -0600 From: "D.B. Metallo" <dbmetallo at wwisp.com> Subject: IBU standard... I was wondering - which is considered the IBU "standard" gauge - Garetz, Rager, or Tinseth? Who's numbers do the AHA and/or the BJCP use? I asked a few people in the local club around here and they didn't seem to know. Thanks. Adieu, Dan - ----- "Give me ambiguity or give me something else." -Anonymous Rat Sass Online http://members.wwisp.com/~dcscanner/ Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 09:50:39 -0500 From: David Whitman <dwhitman at rohmhaas.com> Subject: chitosan Harry Ewasiuk is considering using chitosan as a fining agent: >The issue: I began brewing a few months ago from extract and all grain >kits, producing some very nice, drinkable brews. A friend noticing a slight >haze in my beers, suggested using chitosan to fine them before bottling. >Unfortunately, he was unable to tell me what chitosan is made from and >whether it would be a good fining agent. I have searched the HBD archives >and came up with nothing. If anyone has any information on chitosan, please >share your knowledge. Chitosan is a polysaccharide with pendent amine groups. Product literature I've got suggests that it's quite non-toxic, with LD50 comparible to sugar or salt. Chitosan is soluble at acidic pH, but is an efficient thickener so that you need to work in very dilute solution to keep things pourable. While I've never heard of using chitosan as a fining agent, based on chemical structure I would expect it to have similar behavior to Polyclar - helping polyphenols precipitate. This helps reduce chill haze of beer. Polyclar may also help yeast floculate (although I personally never noticed an effect), and chitosan may do the same. The product literature I've got suggests chitosan can be used as a precipitating agent for proteins in food processing plants but I suspect they're controlling the pH of solution to do so. However, precipitation of protein is how irish moss works to clarify beer. Chitosan is made by hydrolyzing chiton, which in turn is extracted from crab and shrimp shells. Chiton is reasonably cheap, but the conversion to chitosan isn't. My product sheet is dated 1986, and in large lots the stuff cost $22/kg back then. Looking at the structure, I don't think cheaper, unhydrolyzed chiton would act as a fining agent. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 10:34:45 -0500 From: Andrew Stavrolakis <andrew_stavrolakis at harvard.edu> Subject: EKU Lager yeast Hi All, I just won a vial of "EKU Lager Yeast" at the recent Boston Homebrew Competition for 1st place Alt (Thanks to Al K. for so publicly encouraging the use of 100% Munich in Altbier recipes - alas, Alt is no longer an MCAB qualifying style) I'd like to use this yeast to brew soon- I rely on nature to provide lager ferment temps and I am rapidly running out of winter. What are the characteristics of this yeast? Similar to Wyeast Bavarian? I've heard of Kulminator, but I'd rather not brew a doppelbock; I was thinking more along the lines of a Marzen. Any thoughts would be appreciated... Thanks. andrew_stavrolakis at harvard.edu Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 11:08:25 -0500 From: Joe Rolfe <rolfe at sky.sky.com> Subject: mills, backdoor, 100gal++, carboys. from >jsp / >>Dan Listerman.. .hope i quoted you guys correctly - flame my arse if not. >>"One of the prime reasons that brewers get poor extractions >>is poor crushes. This is especially common >>amoung beginning all-grain brewers because of a fear >>of getting a stuck mash. Inconsistant crushes cannot >>be looked upon as an advantage." Once you "see" good crush - you just know if it is good enuff or not. The more likely reason for crappy extract or batch to batch inconsistency, (outside of normal boundaries what ever that works out to for the beers you brew with your equipment) is old, stale or otherwise mishandled (many hands are touching this before you in most cases) malt. The next would be poor lautering, followed by pH/temp control, then i'll buy into the crush. >>"I crush by visual inspection never worrying about what the gap is. >Me too. I have not adjusted my mill in 4 years >nor have 7000 happy users of pre-adjusted MM's. I usually adjust my mill everytime till I see what I want to see coming out. But I bet I could set it and forget it if I wanted to. sedam at bellsouth.net said... >I work at a homebrew shop that was the victim of a >"backdoor buy" and can assure you that it does effect the >bottom line of the shops. Don't you think a homebrew shop >would want to sell someone 2,000 lbs of grain? >That's only 40 bags of grain--easily within the realm of >an industrious group of brewers. For the $3/ bag >you might save, you'll kill the local shops. By backdoor buy I take it you are talking about - buying direct from a brewery or distributor. Find a homebrewshop that can except 2 pallets of grain and have room to store it. a metric ton of grain makes a hell of a lot a beer. (2200#malt at 25pts/# of 1050 beer = 1100 gallons - yea we could do that). But my guess if that or a few of those deals are enough to kill any shop then - biz is biz, fix the cash flow problem or find something else to do. The good shops dont tend to go out of biz easily. And I can see saving more than $3/bag on a $35-40 bag if this is done thru a brewery. Some of the shops are doing a fairly high markup, not that I wish them to go out of biz, but dont take me to the cleaners me before you do. Charge me a fair price, have the products I am looking for and cut me some slack if I buy volume, that is all I can ask.(guilty streak just set in tho..- I used to do the backdoor deals from my brewery - string me up) >>Then there is that 100 gal limit........ >Tha one's easy: just get married! It doubles it! Why get a wife, Call the local ATF office and file a brewers notice (plus a few other stacks of paper) and raise the limit even higher. Tis alot cheaper to go commercial - me thinks.... CARBOYS. ALL glass carboys should be destroyed as soon as possible.... recent new law enacted by congress mandates this by Jan 1, 2000. Good Luck and Great Brewing Joe Rolfe Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 11:05:41 -0500 From: joytbrew at halifax.com (Joy Hansen) Subject: Aluminum Screen in a brew pot? Adam Holmes asked about using aluminum screen as a filter in his brew pot. While there isn't any confirmed health problem associated with aluminum in wort, IMO the acidity of the boiling wort will eat away at the screen. Stainless steel is a better choice because it isn't affected by the wort, will last for many years, and it will stand up to many cleaners used for brewing equipment. I've read several HBD posts which indicate alternatives to screen. One using the braided SS cover of flexible water pipe seems very workable and easily cleaned. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 08:30:25 -0800 From: Domenick Venezia <demonick at zgi.com> Subject: chitosan "Harry Ewasiuk" <shogun at ccinet.ab.ca> says: >A friend noticing a slight haze in my beers, suggested using chitosan to >fine them before bottling. Unfortunately, he was unable to tell me what >chitosan is made from and whether it would be a good fining agent. Chitosan is a recent craze in weight loss management. It is heralded as a fat sponge. It is a deacylated form of chitin which is the carbohydrate that makes up the shells of crabs, lobsters, cockroaches, and other arthropods. It is very similar to cellulose but has -NH2 groups attached to the #2 carbons instead of -OH. It is not digestible, but is supposed to bind fat and pass it through the digestive system unprocessed. My guess is that it would not make a good fining agent. In fact it might tend to remove the lipids that make trub useful. Search for chitosan on the web or go to: http://members.tripod.com/~Dalwoo/home.html http://www.chitosan.net/ DISCLAIMER: I know nothing of the scientific validity of the claims of the proponents of chitosan. I am not advocating the use of chitosan. I have never used chitosan. I have no plans to ever use chitosan. Cheers! Domenick Venezia Venezia & Company, LLC Maker of PrimeTab (206) 782-1152 phone (206) 782-6766 fax orders demonick at zgi dot com Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 11:48:36 -0500 From: Elijah Daniel <Elijah.Daniel at digital.com> Subject: copper scrubby problems Hi, all. I recently put a spigot on my enamel-on-steel brewpot (anyone who's interested in details is free to email me directly). Inside the pot, I have a Copper Scrubby Thing (CST) for washing dishes which I attached to the dip tube with a hose clamp (stainess steel?) for a filter. I ran water through the system a couple of times, and it worked great. So here's my problem: I just noticed that the CST produces nasty orange goop. It seems that when its left sitting around wet, little pieces of copper flake off and make this very metallic smelling slime. Not something I want to get in my beer. So, what's wrong here? I took the CST off from the pot and noticed that it was corroded-looking where the hose clamp had been attached to it. The problem doesn't appear to be specific to places where the CST touches metal, though... I've been using another one (they came in a package of two) for dishes, and its been doing the same thing, even in a pottery bowl where it was left overnight. Is the CST-as-filter idea inherently flawed? Or is my generic CST just poorly made? Should I get a brand-name one? Or just use screen or some such instead? Thanks for any input... Eli Daniel Somerville, MA Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 11:58:40 -0500 From: Eric Reimer <eric at etymonic.com> Subject: Water transfers to gott coolers Hi all. I am having an on going problem with oxidation. Most of my beer is suffering from a short shelf life. The beer tastes great for a few weeks after packaging, but changes for the worse after this time. I am very careful about all transfers of wort and beer during mashing, sparging, boil pot to fermenter and packaging. My current brewery set-up uses a gas stove to heat the water and wort. A gott cooler to mash and sparge , and another gott cooler to hold the preheated sparge water. One area of concern is the transfer of heated water to the mash/lauter vessel (before adding grist) and transfer of the heated water to the HLT. I have been dumping the water from the pot used to heat the water into the respective gott cooler. This must be a major factor in oxygen pickup...no? How are other gott cooler users transferring water to the gott so as not to aerate the water? All comments welcome. TIA, Eric Reimer Barking Dogs Brewery London, Ontario Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 12:08:10 -0500 From: "Philip J Wilcox" <pjwilcox at cmsenergy.com> Subject: Oat Malt % in 6 Grain Stout From: Philip J Wilcox at CMS on 03/15/99 12:08 PM Hi everyone, Im kinda tossed on what I want to do for my next stout. I know I want to have it as a Milk stout (My wife and I are expecting) (a girl in July, thx for asking;<). But after visiting the brew store this weekend I realized how easy it would be to make this a Six Grain Stout. Rye and Rice were on sale. I already had the corn--Wheat and Barley are givin's in my ales and Oats are where I was starting from. I'm Just not sure which way I want to go with it. I re-read the stout chapter of Daniels book and I think it was he who mentioned how oily Oats are and that you don't want to use more than 12% else the head will suffer. Is this something I should worry about? Could I over compensate by using Carapils or Tortified Wheat? Six Grain Stout Malts LBS % Scot Malt 9 44.44 Oat Malt 2.5 12.35 Rye Malt 1 4.94 Munich 1 4.94 Belg CaraMunich 1 4.94 Corn-Flaked 1 4.94 Rice- 1 4.94 Flaked Oats 0.75 3.70 Germ Choc Wheat 0.5 2.47 HomeRoasted Oat Malt 0.5 2.47 Roasted Barley 1 4.94 Tortified Wheat 1 4.94 Hopped 3 to1 with EKG and Fuggles to 21 IBU in one addition The other way I have it is more like Mackeson's or Maclay's Scot Malt 10 49.38 Oat Malt 4.5 22.22 Munich 1 4.94 Belg CaraMunich 1 4.94 Flaked Oats 0.75 3.70 Germ Choc Wheat 0.5 2.47 HomeRoasted Oat Malt 0.5 2.47 Roasted Barley 1 4.94 Tortified Wheat 1 4.94 Hopped 3 to1 with EKG and Fuggles to 21 IBU in one addition Any suggestions or experience out there would be very much appreciated. Phil Wilcox Poison Frog Home Brewer Warden-Prison City Brewers AABG, AHA, BJCP, HBD, MCAB, ETC., ad nausium... Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 09:13:33 -0800 From: Bryan Gros <bryang at xeaglex.com> Subject: starters "Conan Barnes" <barneco at earthlink.net> wrote: >I'm pretty new to homebrewing(on my 3rd batch). ... >i'm planning on a Honey Brown Ale, and thought i'd try wyeast >1028. my question, is this yeast known to be slow? or have i done >something wrong? i bought the pack on sunday and started it. 2 days went >by with no activity. so i put it on the hot water heater(not very hot, just >not cold like the rest of the house), and the pack swelled up in 24 hours. >so i brewed a starter and pitched it. after about a day i could see >activity and the airlock was moving(slow, but moving). i expected to see a >good Krausen soon, so i'd be ready to pitch it saturday(tomorrow), but >instead, the activity slackened, then stopped all together. ... >has anyone come up with some nifty gadget to >maintain a 70-80F temp in a champagne bottle? Congratulations on taking the plunge with liquid yeast and improving your brews. Sounds like your starter may be done. One thing beginners expect is a good active krausen, and you generally don't see that in a starter. If the airlock is moving, then you're okay. If you swirl it around, you should see some CO2. Looks like you're fine. And depending on how you made your starter, it may be fermented out by now. As for keeping it warm, I made a crude incubator at one time. I simply made a box from thin plywood just big enough for my ehrlenmeyer (sp?) flask. I used a light bulb as a heat source and a cheap air conditioner thermostat to control it. If you don't put hops in your stater, then the light won't hurt anything. It seemed to work fine, but I think it was overkill. > On a quick second note, anyone have an extract recipe for an oatmeal >stout, if such a thing is possible? Someone last week was asking for an extract recipe for a CAP. Sorry guys, but these styles require non-malted adjuncts (oatmeal and corn). The only way to use these adjuncts is to mash them with some malted barley. That way, the enzymes in the barley will break down the starches in the adjuncts. Can't be done with extracts, unfortunately. ******* Someone wrote to say that people should be supporting their local homebrew shop, and implying that the savings for buying malt in bulk is $3 per sack. In my neck of the woods, the wholesale price of grain is $23 (domestic malt) a sack, just under 50 cents per pound. Most homebrew shops that I know of sell malt for about $1 per pound. Maybe a tad less if you buy by the sack. I can buy at wholesale prices either direct from the wholesaler or from the local pub at cost. The savings is much more than $3 per sack. One area that the local shop could help me in is its hours. I brew on weekends, generally early. I never brew on Tues, Wed, or Thurs. Yet my local shop is open all week but closed on Sundays... - Bryan Bryan Gros Oakland CA Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 11:31:23 -0600 From: Greg Remake <gremake at gsbalum.uchicago.edu> Subject: Split session brewing Hello all, As I saw suggested in the HBD, I tried splitting my brewing session into two parts this weekend, and it was a great success. Even with a late start on Friday night, I still got to bed at a reasonable time after mashing and sparging, then boiled the wort and filled the primary on Saturday morning (after squeezing in a charity pancake breakfast). Two shorter brewing sessions were actually more fun than one long one, and I had more time left over for my family and other weekend projects. If you're having trouble finding the time you need for brewing, I highly recommend trying this approach. My only question is in regards to the appropriate temperature at which to keep the wort overnight. Are there any problems with letting it sit on the stove (like I did), or is there a benefit to cooling it and keeping it chilled until the boil? Since I'd be boiling it anyway, I wasn't worried about bacterial growth overnight, but for those of you who postpone the boil, what is your procedure? BTW, I brewed a CAP (Jeff Renner's bug has bitten me) and tried first wort hopping. I was amazed at the smooth hops character I tasted in the wort, which tasted wonderful. It could just be the recipe, but perhaps steeping the hops overnight contributed to the nice flavor and aroma. I'm hoping the finished beer lives up to expectations. Cheers! Greg Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 13:27:48 -0500 From: "Bayer, Mark A (Boeing)" <BayerMA at navair.navy.mil> Subject: homebrew shops vs. backdoor black market collective homebrew conscience: pat wrote: >When a "reallife business" finds itself non-competitively priced, a "real life business"would >normally narrow it's margins to recoup the traffic, and accept that they just aren't going to >make that much on that particular product, or they stop carrying it altogether. Like evolution, >you adjust to the environment -- or you die. there is one other thing they can do, and that is to offer services that the backdoor specialists cannot. free crushing? *accurate* malt analysis? there are bound to be other ways that a homebrew dealer can exceed the capabilities of the back door pirates, but they have to make the effort and be more than just a supplier. some homebrewers will always go for the lowest prices no matter what, but others appreciate and will patronize hb shops that make the effort to retain their business. the customer has to perceive added value in the product and services, though. keith asked about adding roasted grains after the saccharification, to avoid low mash ph's and enzyme problems. the other thing to consider is the ph of the wort. you may need to adjust your sparge water ph a bit higher to avoid a too-low ph in the boiler, which can result in poor hot break formation and lower hop utilization. where in the world is alk? he didn't suffer a mishap re: the basement propane vent project, i hope. does anybody else see the humor in fouch's escort service postings in light of the name of his brewery? brew hard, mark bayer great mills, md leaving for stl in two weeks. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 13:15:37 -0600 From: rlabor at lsumc.edu (LaBorde, Ronald) Subject: RE: Backdoor Dealings... >>>> How do you think a restaurant would do if you could bring your own ingredients and just have them cook it? Same thing <<<< Actually, in New Orleans, we have many small business restaurants, doing quite well. The cost of a liquor license and yearly renewal is prohibitive for the small volume of drinkers in these small restaurants. These busisnesses have taken the stance that customers can bring in their own wine or beer. This seems to work well, they will provide glasses, and some will even provide openers for you. This is encouraged, because they rather sell you their food services and make a profit, than pay high licensee fees, and probably loose money. It works out well for homebrewers, (ever price wine in a restaurant?), as we can bring ours in and enjoy. What does this have to do with the discussion on homebrew shops? It means that if they cannot compete on grain prices, they must find a way to compete in other areas that will compel customers to patronize their business. Normally, if I go and get advice, tips, and don't forget the convenience of a local shop, I will pay more if I consider it a fair price. If I find a great low price for base malts, then I feel that I should purchase it for my personal benefit. After all, what can the homebrew shop offer with base malt other than tell me - yeah, use it. When it becomes useful for me to purchase the specialty malt and other not so large volume items, then I patronize the homebrew shop. Like it or not, this is the free market system, the system that has beaten back the ugly head of Communism, and the system we are all into. >>>> However, if they just sit back and cry about competition -- no matter the source, they're whining. If they react to it in such a way that they remain COMPETITIVE, they're treating their shops like "real life businesses." <<<< Right on, Pat. Happy milling Ron Ronald La Borde - Metairie, Louisiana - rlabor at lsumc.edu Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 14:26:24 -0500 From: AJ <ajdel at mindspring.com> Subject: Correction/Minimashs/Water/Iodine Kevin wrote: >AJ wrote: >>Jeff Renner (from whom I am currently more distant than ordinarily)<< >that is true of most of us as Jeff is in England this week. OK. It should have read "Jeff Renner (from whom I am currently less distant than ordinarily)" AJ, 20 km south of Theakstons. I'm mainly bringing this up as an opportunity to tell you all what a wonderful beer draught Old Peculier is. If you ever get a chance to try it, don't pass it up! World class. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Keith had a couple of questions on mini mashes. I am always amazed at how much acid there is is patent, roast barley etc. My recall is that a kilo of good black malt is equivalent to a few mL of hardware-store-strength hydrochloric acid so that yes, if you mash a couple of pounds of dark malts with a couple of pounds of pale malt the pH is going to be too low and conversion efficiency will not be what it was if the pH were maintained at a more proper level. On the other hand, maximum conversion is not the reason people do partial mashes. It is flavor extraction. There certainly isn't much sugar in the high kilned malts anyway. If the maxiumum amount of sugar is wanted a brewer could, as Keith suggested, do the pale and colored malts separately or, as some folk do, add the black malts at the very end of the mash. * * ** * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Tom Barnett asks whether he should get involved with water treatment "..will it significantly improve my beers, or simply make things more complicated?" The answer is "yes". As many of you know I have studied this question to the point of absurdity over the years and have concluded 1. Most homebrewers don't have much knowledge about the whys and wherefores of brewing water chemistry. 2. Most small scale commercial brewers don't seem to either. 3. Neither really has to. Both know that hard water is good for some beers and that soft water is required for others. Most know that water can be softened by boiling it or adding lime and hardened by adding gypsum and calcium chloride. Most know that gypsum accentuates hops and calcium chloride body. Armed with this knowledge I believe that a brewer can improve his beers by tweaking water parameters in the same way he tweaks hopping rates, percentages of patent malt etc. This is what the small commercial breweries appear to do. I've heard them say things like "We started adding some calcium chloride to see if it would improve the body of Old Overshoe." Commercial operations have an advantage in that they typically brew only a handful of types of beer and they brew them over and over again so that small incremental changes can be made and evaluated. There is no reason why home brewers can't procede the same way. It will just take them longer to get there. Understanding the fundamentals is, of course, a help. I believe the fundamentals consist in understanding: 1. The flavor effects of chloride 2. The flavor effects of sulfate 3. The relationship between alkalinity, hardness and mash pH. The particulars of Tom's water: Calcium 11.8 mg/l, Sodium 2.1 mg/l, Magnesium 2.0 mg/l, Alkal. (as CaCO3) 24.0, Hardness 37, Sulfate 16.13, Chloride 6.7, pH 7.8 are such that he can brew lagers with out needing to do anything i.e. this water is soft. Ales on the other hand will probably benefit from some gypsum for hops amplification and/or calcium chloride for body. Dark ales may require some carbonate to offset the acids of the dark malts used. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Mike asks about a red iodine indication. This is from the presence of dextrines and indicates that while starch lysis is extensive many of the fragments are larger than triose. Thus it is a desireable indication if one is attempting a dextrinous (full bodied, sweet) and an undesireable one if maximum maltose (dry, highly alcoholic) beer is sought. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 12:27:12 -0700 From: Paul Gatza <paulg at aob.org> Subject: What the AHA is for Dan Cole asked: <Can someone remind me what the AHA is for? Hi Dan. Here is our mission: "To promote the public awareness and appreciation of the quality and variety of beer through education, research and the collection and dissemination of information; to serve as a forum for the cross-cultural aspects of the art of brewing; and to encourage responsible use of beer as an alcohol-containing beverage." I responded to Steven Mallory's editorial privately, pointing out my concerns about the Homebrew Publicity Campaign. Steven replied to me about participating in the campaign, and I am considering using up to $1500 of member funds for this effort. Steven has allayed some of my concerns regarding the program. One example of how we are promoting homebrewing is the AHA on the Road Tour, the first leg of which generated dozens of newspaper articles and several tv reports, which was directly aimed at getting potential brewers involved. Another is a featured piece we worked on for a recent Sunday paper with a 300,000 circulation. Our events such as the AHA Conference and the NHC and Big Brew also bring attention to homebrewing, but not as much as they could. We are anticipating that the scheduled website redesign of beertown.org will also make the hobby more accessible. Zymurgy and techtalk help people keep their enthusiasm and help them brew better beer. Regarding the AHA assiting in legalization in a minor way. I am working to help members who want participate in a transition to making this a grassroots association. The AHA is not out to push legalization on states, we are here to assist homebrewers in those states wanting to make that change happen. In Idaho, the person there had her campaign quite together and a handful of e-mails between us led to our contacting other Idaho AHA members. In Iowa, I was asked for more help with the language of the bill. In Maine, I have been told that the AHA is not needed and a legislative change is not sought, and I have repected that request. I take the strategy that a background support role is most appropriate for the AHA on the legalization issue. You have strong enough feelings about the AHA and/or the hobby of homebrewing to post on the HBD about it. Although the title of your post does not want "to awaken the AHA thread again..." I'd like to ask you or anyone with an opinion to respond to me (privately is fine, for AHA members I encourage you to use the TalkBack forum), as I find that some of our critics have great ideas and interesting visions for our hobby. In your opinion, how can the AHA become a better national homebrewers association? (Please assume that answers using the word "defunct" are not helpful for me.) If you have thoughts on that or other issues affecting the homebrewing community now and future, I'd be interested to hear them. - -- Paul Gatza Director American Homebrewers Association (303) 447-0816 x 122 736 Pearl Street (303) 447-2825 -- FAX PO Box 1679 paulg at aob.org -- E-MAIL Boulder, CO 80306-1679 info at aob.org -- AOB INFO U.S.A. http://www.beertown.org -- WEB Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 11:49:51 -0800 (PST) From: Tim Anderson <timator at yahoo.com> Subject: Re: Fred Garvin Seminars I found Eric Fouch's post regarding the "fist round for the American Homebrewers Association National Homebrew Competition" to be in very poor taste. And very funny! Thanks, Eric, you made my day. tim == Please ignore the advertisement below. Thank you. _________________________________________________________ DO YOU YAHOO!? Get your free at yahoo.com address at http://mail.yahoo.com Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 14:56:47 -0500 From: "Marc Sedam" <marc_sedam at unc.edu> Subject: backdoor dealings, con't. Pat (and my sincere apologies to Dan, who's a HB store owner!), You're missing the point. Of course, every homebrew shop wants 100% market share. Who wouldn't? I was making the assumption that the brewery isn't going to sell you grains at cost--no one is that fiscally bereft. It's not like you're likely to buy a ton of their beer. If you homebrew and need to buy hundreds of pounds of grain, you have your own product to consume. What I am suggesting is that if you have to give SOMEONE a profit, why not support the local store? Now let's get down to the nitty gritty. I'll play devil's advocate and ask why *should* you buy from a store? Will the local brewery supply you with hops? Maybe...but you may only get two-four options. Will they provide you with yeast? Maybe, but you'll likely only have one option there as well, and THAT will probably be 1056. How about specialty grains? I doubt anyone buys 55lb sacks of Special B. So, you're heading out to the local brewery to pick up your pale malt. So what? Let's further assume that the profit margin on a sack of grain for a homebrew shop is 30% (a fair estimate...some higher, some lower). The grain costs $25/sack and is sold at $32.50. That's a loss of $12.50/sack for each sack not bought at the local shop, assuming both a constant rate of grain sales in any given shop and a reasonable purchase rate from the grain supplier. If the amount purchased goes down, bulk rate is lost and the wholesale price goes up. Let's also assume that the average bear DOESN'T buy grain by the sack, but by the pound (5, 10, 20lbs, whatever). The result of losing volume to the backdoor deal means the average price per sack goes up which means the price for smaller quantities goes up effecting a much larger percentage of brewers. Maybe the cost of grain is already at the maximum your market will bear. So, in order to meet the minimum monthly profits required to keep a small business in existence you have to bump the price of other products up a little. Hops go up 10 cents an ounce. Carboys are up a couple of bucks. Yeast goes up a buck. Suddenly you're effecting a MUCH larger clientele. Maybe they're dedicated and willing to put up with the increases and maybe they're not. Eventually you hit a point where the prices you have to charge to stay open and live above the poverty line are no longer economically feasible. The shop closes and homebrewing suffers. Some will never pick up the hobby again. Others will have to travel or pay shipping costs or other expenses which previously didn't exist, making the hobby even more expensive and leading to further attrition. One grain leads to a silo of problems. OK, basic capitalism and economics state that competition depresses prices. This much is true. That's why Home Depot and Lowes have crowded out local hardware stores. CVS crushed the local pharmacies, and single-owner grocery stores barely exist. Competition is more than just price. It's service, reliability, and customer satisfaction. Try to find those at the local brewery. I'm sure they're nice, but I've heard plenty of micros in several states bitch about the number of petulant homebrewers who complain when they can't stop a production process to fill up their Ball jar with fresh yeast. Pro brewers are as nice as the next guy, but their job is to commercially produce beer--not serve as your homebrew store. Just like a restaurant provides a service and isn't just a place to cook food. People call the HBD a great homebrewing club, but serving solely selfish interests like bulk grain buying winds up limiting products and overall choice. If your boss told you that they could easily fill your role with a temp and not pay benefits, you'd be out the door like a hot potato. Why don't they? Because loyalty, in its many forms, has a benefit that far outweighs the cost. Be loyal to your local establishment and think about its benefit to the overall homebrewing community. Otherwise we'll all be back to Pabst Hopped Malt Extract as the only choice around. Remember, it's good to be passionate and emotional about brewing. If homebrewers were interested in a homogenized economy where everyone got everything as cheap as possible, we'd all be drinking MGD Light or Milwaukee's Best. It's not like (even with bulk buying) you could EVER make beer as cheap as the big boys. If you want cheap beer, drink swill. If you want to be able to create product of unparalleled depth and creativity, homebrew. Thanks for putting up with my diatribe. Cheers! Marc Marc Sedam Chapel Hill, NC Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 15:37:37 -0500 From: Dan Listermann <72723.1707 at compuserve.com> Subject: Decline of Homebrewing Wayne of Big Fun Brewing ( WayneM38 at aol.com) writes: <With our hobby, as one gets better and after one moves to all grain, the investment in materials and expense actually drops!! > This is true, it would be absolute folly to try to discourage someone from advancement. I have to look at it this way. The guys who advance to all-grain brewing are your long term customers. They will be around for years. To them it is not just a passing fancy. Further these guys are your evangelists. They are out there talking up the hobby to the unwashed. They should be nurtured, never discouraged. When I took up homebrewing again, it was difficult to find interesting, inexpensive and most of all, fresh beers in the States. The micro brew revolution has changed all this. It is now possible to find very interesting, inexpensive and, if you are carefull where you buy it, fresh beers. Here is another irony. Most of the brewers at the micros are former home brewers or were trained by former homebrewers. The homebrewing industry trained the people who are displacing some of the demand for their products. Again this could not be avoided or discouraged. I believe that our market will decline to those who really enjoy the process of making beer. I am not so sure that this is so bad. Like I said before, I really like these people! Dan Listermann dan at listermann.com or 72723.1707 at compuserve.com Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 12:42:52 -0800 (PST) From: Alan Edwards <ale at cisco.com> Subject: Where to get 6oz bottles for barleywine Thomas Murray asks: | | quoting someone else?: | > "Does anyone know of a source for 6oz bottles. It's about time to | > bottle my barleywine. Thanks for the help." | | It's the perennial barley wine bottle question. I know that there are | small beer bottles manufactured in the US, I bet someone could make a | decent amount of money selling them to desperate home brewers (I'll | take a few cases). I understand that a manufacturer would probably | require a large purchase of bottles, but couldn't the larger mail order | home-brew suppliers (or the wholesalers that supply them) deal with | that? If some kind store owner would do that, it would be great! However, it is quite rewarding to collect these yourself! I've been spending the last year or so collecting these bottles for my barleywine batch (which takes almost a year to age properly anyway) by making an extra effort to buy and drink Old Foghorn (twist my arm!), which is the best malt beverage in the history of humanity...of all time...of all space!! (in my not-so-humble opinion ;-). I'm not sure how available it is outside the Bay Area. I'd try looking in a large-wherehouse type liquor store. We used to have these places called Liquor Barn, then they went out of business. Now we have "Beverages and More" in the Bay Area. You might call Anchor Brewing to find out where it is distributed in your area. -Alan in Fremont, CA Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 1999 15:57:50 -0500 From: "Robert C. McDonald" <Bob.McDonald at abanet.org> Subject: Food processing grain Greetings I've been an extract brewer for about 6 years, and apropos the recent thread on homebrew shops (thanks, Pat, I couldn't have written it better myself), I'd like to get away from the high prices, inconvenience and pompous attitude of my (barely) local homebrew shop, and order grains for steeping and partial mashes in bulk (5-10 lbs). Since my homebrew shop usually mills the stuff for me, milling my own grains hasn't been an issue. Not wanting to invest in a mill for this purpose, methinks why not use a foodprocessor to grind small amounts of grain -- say 1/2 lb at a time? Anyone try it? Results? Flames for disrespecting my pseudo-monopoly semi-local homebrew shop? TIA for any input. Bob McDonald Washington D.C. Return to table of contents
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