HOMEBREW Digest #306 Mon 20 November 1989

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		Rob Gardner, Digest Coordinator

  Large Batches (ferguson ct 71078)
  Cornelius Kegs and Fittings (Mike Fertsch)
  Reasonable facsimile of a Samuel Adams? (CSC-F-JOBERR)
  Yeast Starters (Norm Hardy)
  Sanitation (Doug Roberts  at  Los Alamos National Laboratory)
  Re: first-timer wants help w/light ginger-ale (Chris Shenton)
  bursting digests (rdg)
  Temperature drop. (boubez)
  Sanitizing & Bottles (rdg)
  acquiring empty bottles (Scott Renner)
  M - F Homebrew Tape (Martin A. Lodahl)
  sanitizing once more (florianb)
  Labels (Norm Hardy)
  Prodigy (Norm Hardy)
  Re: Re: First-timer wants help with light ginger-ale (Dr. T. Andrews)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Thu, 16 Nov 89 11:51:21 EST From: ferguson%X102C at HARRIS-ATD.COM (ferguson ct 71078) Subject: Large Batches >I see a discussion of large (31 gallon ==> 110 litre) batches, and >as someone most cogently remark 'you have to cool it afterwards'. >The biggest batch I ever attempted was 10 imperial gallons, 45 litres. >I lost that batch because: > >1) I couldn't cool it quickly > >2) I couldn't move the batch! 45 litres x 1.060 = 47.7kg + container > - for non-metric people, 105 lbs. I brew 10 gallon batches all the time using extracts. You don't boil all the wort, just the extract and enough water to keep it soupy. That keeps the brewpot from getting too heavy. Then dilute the wort to initial sg in the fermenter. I use two 5 gal. carboys so they won't get too heavy either. Nevertheless, a 5 gal. carboy is still heavy and a 2-1/2 gal. brewpot is troublesome when hot. Perhaps an all-grain brewer could do the same for large batches --- boil and chill a concentrated wort then dilute to desired sg in the fermenter. Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 17 Nov 89 08:41 EST From: Mike Fertsch <FERTSCH at adc1.adc.ray.com> Subject: Cornelius Kegs and Fittings Steve Harris asks - > As I recall, somebody said that there are two styles of Cornelius keg taps > (is that the right term? -- the gizmos to which you attach the gas-input > and beer-output hoses). Somebody please correct or expand on these > remarks as I don't want to mislead any other novices. "Somebody" is right. Cornelius makes "pin-type" fittings and "ball-type" fittings. Pin type fittings have three little radial pins on the liquid connection, and two pins on the gas fitting. I don't really know how to tell the gender on ball-type kegs - I don't have any. Locally, Pepsi uses pin type, and Coke uses ball type (Or is it the other way around?) Make sure you get the right kind of keg to match your hardware. Keg gender-change kits can be purchased for around $10-$15, but I perfer to get the right keg in the first place - my shop carries both kinds. Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 17 Nov 89 09:50 EST From: CSC-F-JOBERR <HALLMAN%NIEHS.BITNET at CORNELLC.cit.cornell.edu> Subject: Reasonable facsimile of a Samuel Adams? Greetings y'all: Does anyone out there have a good recipe that emulates a Samuel Adams Lager. I'm interested in a malt extract recipe. Any clues? Thanks. L. Eric Hallman HALLMAN at NIEHS Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 16 Nov 89 18:41:38 PST From: polstra!norm at hplabs.HP.COM (Norm Hardy) Subject: Yeast Starters Rehydrating the dry yeast in 90 degree water for 20 to 60 minutes seems to work the best. Then, when pitching, just pour the liquid into the primary. If you are using a carboy for the primary, then put a clean cork on the top and shake, rattle, or roll the carboy to mix everything up. No spoon is needed. Since aeration is necessary to reoxygenate the wort after boiling, you are killing two birds with one stone. Lately, though, I have just been using liquid yeast, from WYeast. I am forced to make a starter just to build up the amount of yeast. I would like to hear how other people are doing it. Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 17 Nov 89 08:51:14 MST From: roberts%studguppy at LANL.GOV (Doug Roberts at Los Alamos National Laboratory) Subject: Sanitation > Check it out, Doug. Pitch your next batch with your bare hands, then > ferment and bottle as usual. Drink one bottle every week. When you > can taste the infection, compare the elapsed time to your normal shelf > life. Sorry, no can doo. My MDR (Minimum Daily Requirement) is one bottle per day: my beer's shelf life is measured in weeks, not months. :-}. I _can_, however, pitch my next batch with my bare hands if you still want me too. :-} :-} --Doug Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 17 Nov 89 11:26:53 est From: Chris Shenton <chris at asylum.gsfc.nasa.gov> Subject: Re: first-timer wants help w/light ginger-ale kipps at etoile.ICS.UCI.EDU writes: > I've never heard of such a recipe, but I have an idea. There's a soda > extract (available from most homebrew suppliers) called Ginger Beer. I've made this and it's pretty good! Next time, I'd try using honey instead of sugar, and adding some grated fresh ginger for a real kick. > If made according to the instructions (with sugar and champange yeast), it > has an alcohol content of less than 1/2 percent; a lot lower than what you > want. The reason it has no alcohol is that you don't ferment! Just boil, cool, and bottle; you have to let it carbonate for a week or two. I imagine if you *did* let it ferment, you'd have a pretty potent brew, with all the sugar the extract calls for; it would probably be pretty dry (yeast would eat the sugar), and have the same sour offtaste that extract recipes give you when you use sugar instead of extra extract. > What would happen if you added this extract to a low-hopped malt > base? For a 5 gallon batch, I'd try something like 5 lbs. of an American > light (dry) and 1 1/2 oz. Cascade hops (1 oz. for boil; 1/2 oz. for > aroma). If you added the extract (and maybe some cloves and cinnamon) at > the end of the boil, I'd think this might give you a brew with all the > flavor of ginger beer and an alcohol content of 3 to 4 percent. Actually, > I think I might try this myself. Yow! That does sound good. Let me know how it turns out! Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 17 Nov 89 10:36:40 MST From: rdg at hpfcmi Subject: bursting digests Full-Name: Rob Gardner > > Subject: Problem with digest format -- cannot burst reliably. > > <text of message> > > -- > > <your signature here> > I think this should be fixed now. I change any leading '--' to '- '. > - ---------------------------- Oooops!! I guess I should have tested that first. I think it's in the right place now. Rob Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 17 Nov 89 12:37:16 EST From: boubez at bass.rutgers.edu Subject: Temperature drop. My batch has been fermenting for 6 days now, and was still active last night. Our heating broke down last night and the temperature in the apartment dove down to below 58 (the lowest reading my thermometer has). This went on throught the night and this morning the fermentation was quiet. Should I bottle as planned this week-end, or wait for the temp. to go back up when we get our heat back and take specific gravity readings if the fermentation gets re-activated? Also, what effect will this have on the taste? Thanks. toufic Toufic Boubez boubez at caip.rutgers.edu Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 17 Nov 89 10:54:04 MST From: rdg at hpfcmi Subject: Sanitizing & Bottles Full-Name: Rob Gardner > The other point I want to make is that, according to Papazian' book, (I > don't have the book here, but I think I remember correctly) the homebrewing > equipment does not need to be STERILIZED, only SANITIZED, to give your yeast > an edge over the competition. I think that he also says that a lot of the > commercial breweries don't sterilize either, they just sanitize, but I'm not > sure about this. Well, this is all. What do more experienced brewers think? The reason for being satisfied with just sanitizing is that sterilization is close to impossible. You need to boil an object under pressure for quite a while to realy "sterilize" it, and that is just not possible to do your entire brewing environment. > Where can I get empty bottles? My friends are just about tapped out > and when I go to bars and ask them, they just look at me funny. You should be able to go to any liquor store that sells beer in deposit bottles, and ask to buy some empties, which should be about $1.25/case. If you local store doesn't have any, try a sleazier part of town. Or, check garbage bins at hotels for Champagne bottles. If you really, really, truly cannot find any bottles, there are places that sell brand new, perfect, clean beer bottles. But, the cost is outrageous- $8/case, plus shipping, which may be more than that, depending on where you live. I'd buy some sort of kegging system before doing something desperate like this. Rob Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 17 Nov 89 18:05:35 -0600 From: Scott Renner <renner at cs.uiuc.edu> Subject: acquiring empty bottles I have never had any trouble with this. The liquor stores in town sell much beer in return-deposit bottles. When somebody brings back a case of empties, the store gives them $1.50. The store is happy to let me have as many cases of these empties as I want, for the same $1.50. Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 17 Nov 89 16:08:15 PST From: Martin A. Lodahl <pbmoss!mal at hplabs.HP.COM> Subject: M - F Homebrew Tape My long-suffering spouse brought me a tape from the library a couple of days ago: a Munton & Fison "how-to" on homebrewing! Has anyone seen this? It's a real HOOT! I shudder to think what brew made using no other source of info would taste like. I suspect M & F's canned kits are probably higher-profit items than bulk malt, as they presented the choice between whole-grain and extract brewing in a light that clearly favored extract. Plain white granualated sugar was liberally dumped in each of the batches they demonstrated, and when the specific gravity was measured, the sample was dumped back into the brew, inviting infection (I always drink mine, and learn more about how the process is progressing). Their approach to recipes, styles, and the different gravities for those styles was astonishing in its simplicity, and overlooked a great deal. I could go on ... There was also an interesting sequence where they followed a large-scale commercial brewery through the process, ending with a scene showing an aluminum keg rolling across a concrete floor, as the announcer intoned that the final product was another keg "of REAL beer". CAMRA has clearly touched a sore spot. I doubt that it was as much as an hour long, and it's guaranteed to make every reader of this group feel they could brew better beer than the filmmakers could, with less investment in equipment, even on their worst days (though come to think of it, as the equipment all had its labels prominently displayed, it could be that its selection was not primarily dictated by function). Good viewing for homebrew club meetings. - Martin = Martin A. Lodahl Pac*Bell Minicomputer Operations Support Staff = = pacbell!pbmoss!mal -or- mal at pbmoss.Pacbell.COM 916.972.4821 = = If it's good for ancient Druids, runnin' nekkid through the wuids, = = Drinkin' strange fermented fluids, it's good enough for me! 8-) = Return to table of contents
Date: 17 Nov 89 17:33:18 PST (Fri) From: florianb at tekred.cna.tek.com Subject: sanitizing once more Toufic Boubez writes: "I am a newcomer to homebrewing, but I have a few comments about this. I am now in the process of waiting for my FIRST batch to complete its fermentation. When I first started, I cleaned the plastic fermenter with some white powder that the lady at the store recommended (ingredient: active oxygen). I rinsed it properly (I think) and I filled it with 1/2 gallon more water that I should have. I then removed that extra 1/2 gallon (using a sanitized cup, of course :-)). Everything else went according to plan. BTW, I used bottled spring water. Yesterday, I tasted some of that water, and it has a horrible, bitter after taste." The subject of sanitizing could well be one of the most talked about in homebrew digest. Of all the responses I've read, it seems that a mild solution of common plain bleach is the favorite of homebrewers. I use one half capful per gallon, which is about one teaspoon per gallon of warm water. I also rinse everything with the sprayer part of my sink using the hot water tap. I reason that if the water was sitting in the hot water heater at 130 degrees, there couldn't be much bacteria left in it to matter. I have never had a detectable problem. I don't see any reason to mess around with odd cleansing or sanitizing agents which could leave off flavors in the beer. Someone commented on a show on PBS about a guy pitching yeast with his bare hands. Recently, my brother-in-law visited the Sam Smith's brewery in England. The tour guide picked up a handful of the yeast crusties on the side of the (open) fermentation vat, showed it to the guests, and pitched it back in after talking about it and rubbing it in his hands. I guess I agree with "Suurb" in that if the brew is consumed rather quickly, sanitation is rarely a problem anyway. I'd say it's a problem with long storage in rare cases also. For all the hubub that appears in the homebrew books about sanitization, I think it's all blown out of proportion. I certainly don't lose any sleep over it. [Florian Bell -- on my way home to drink some "pretty good" beer.] Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 17 Nov 89 17:49:21 PST From: polstra!norm at hplabs.HP.COM (Norm Hardy) Subject: Labels The method I use for labelling my beer is to buy the little round stick-on sheets available at any stationary store. They fit perfectly on the bottle caps and allow me to identify the brew by number or name or both. They're cheap and they work. When I was new to brewing I used to make fancy labels with computer software and printer. I just don't make time for that anymore. What's inside the bottle is more important anyway. Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 17 Nov 89 19:40:56 PST From: polstra!norm at hplabs.HP.COM (Norm Hardy) Subject: Prodigy Hello Rob, yes I am the Norm Hardy who tries to be active on Prodigy, but quite frankly, I am tired of wading through wine trying to find beer postings. I don't think there is much interest in homebrewing on Prodigy. This is my 3rd day on this bulletin board, and so far I like what I read. As I learn the ropes I'll be better able to send E-mail properly. Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 19 Nov 89 9:06:49 EST From: Dr. T. Andrews <ki4pv!tanner at uunet.UU.NET> Subject: Re: Re: First-timer wants help with light ginger-ale ) [ suggestion to buy ginger-beer extract & add to light wort ] I would expect that you'd do as well or better to add grated ginger root to the end of your boil. Give it about 15 minutes, if my experience is any guide. Add cloves if you must; I don't think that the flavour would be enhanced much by them. - -- ...!bikini.cis.ufl.edu!ki4pv!tanner or... {allegra attctc bpa gatech!uflorida uunet!cdin-1}!ki4pv!tanner Return to table of contents
End of HOMEBREW Digest #306, 11/20/89
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