HOMEBREW Digest #3251 Thu 17 February 2000

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  Dixie Cup 2000: The Early Warning (David Cato)
  Pitching Rates (Biergiek)
  re-pitching yeast (Warandle1)
  Re: Underpitching (KMacneal)
  Feeling A Bit Skunky ("Phil & Jill Yates")
  Re: Head space speculation (Jeff Renner)
  Yeast bugs vs good beer ("Nathaniel P. Lansing")
  RE: Transporting full carboys (LaBorde, Ronald)
  RE: PBW expense ("Paddock Wood Brewing Supplies")
  Never, say never, secondary fermentation (Dave Burley)
  Jason Foster asks about lagering in restaurant walk-in ("jim williams")
  Agent of Pivo (MVachow)
  RE: "George de Piro" 's Vance's Long Fermentation (Vance J Stringham)
  O2, Pitch Rates, Higher Alcohols ("Kevin Imel")
  continuous O2 and honey post and high trappist gravity ("Czerpak, Pete")
  Pitching Rates ("Troy Hager")
  bottle fur ("FLEMING, JOE")
  Brewpubs in central Jersey ("Russ Hobaugh")
  Target hops (William Frazier)
  oxidation of wort/translations (Steve Lacey)
  Re: Braggott mixtures. (Kevin Mc Lean)
  Pellets in the mash tun (Michael Kowalczyk)
  Re high S.G. (BIL2112L)
  Secondary fermenter ("Michael Maag")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Tue, 15 Feb 2000 22:15:00 -0600 From: David Cato <dcato at crunchyfrog.net> Subject: Dixie Cup 2000: The Early Warning Although the 17th Annual Dixie Cup doesn't take place until October, we in the Foam Rangers want to alert the brewing community to this year's special Dixie Cup beer style so you have a chance to brew it soon in order that it can age properly before the Dixie Cup rolls around. Every year, the Dixie Cup has a special "fun" beer style. Last year it was Big & Stupid. This year, we're sticking with the Big theme (which is the reason for this early announcement), but we don't want anything stupid this year. Instead, we want to see your best impression of an Imperial Beer. If the Russian Czar had been fond of Pilsner or IPA instead of Stout, what would the result have been? For the Imperial Beer guidelines, as well as all the other information on the 17th Annual Dixie Cup (as it becomes available), please visit the Foampage at http://www.foamrangers.com and follow the links to the Dixie Cup. - -- David Cato Foam Rangers Grand Wazoo Houston, Texas http://www.foamrangers.com Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 15 Feb 2000 23:40:58 EST From: Biergiek at aol.com Subject: Pitching Rates >Date: Mon, 14 Feb 2000 21:35:30 +0100 >From: "Dr. Pivo" <dp at pivo.w.se> >Subject: Pitching rates. Hard to argue with the Doc, but I think he might have just returned from a trip to his wine cellar after this post. I am not disputing his assertion that for his beers using less than industrial pitching rates produces beer he likes. But my experience has been the exact opposite. This is also contrary to the experience of the entire commercial brewing industry. I know several brewers, including myself, who have mentioned that increasing their pitching rates has been the sole factor for improving the quality of their beers, Fred Kingston is still trying. Thats just my one data point, take it for what its worth, just thought you might want to hear the other side of the story. If you are curious, your starter volumes should be atleast 1.5 gallons for lagers and 0.75 gallons for ales to achieve the minimum recommended pitching rate of 10 million cells per ml of chilled wort. Try it this way, then try it the Doc's way, and then judge for yourself, then do whatever you think makes your beer taste the best. Kyle the Burradoo district of Bakersfield, CA - where men are men and kangaroos are scared of it (Phil Yates says that pouch aint there for nothin') Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000 01:16:05 EST From: Warandle1 at aol.com Subject: re-pitching yeast Hi all, I have five gallons of an American lager fermenting in primary right now. OG 1.048, specific gravity right now is 1.021. I expect the final gravity to be around 1.010(?) or so. I mashed 3 lbs of two row (which had a specific gravity of 1.022 when diluted to around 2.5 gal) and added 3 lbs DME and 1 lb of malted rice extract. Following the advice of HBDers I made a starter culture (my first) which I added to my cooled wort. Problem of sorts: I did not give the starter enough time (only 2 days) to build up the yeast count so I ended up underpitching anyways. Ive always felt that my beers, though good, were not well attenuated. I'm wondering if there is anything wrong with racking the beer (which I plan to do anyways) and making a *new* starter culture of the yeast sediment (Wyeast North American Lager) and re-pitching this starter to the slowly fermenting (at 50F) beer. Is this a good idea? I plan to lager this for 2-3 more weeks at 45-50 F in the glass carboy upon racking so waiting 3-4 days for an additional starter is no problem. Thanks in advance for your comments, Will Randle Ashland, MO Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000 07:20:38 EST From: KMacneal at aol.com Subject: Re: Underpitching In a message dated 2/16/2000 12:12:57 AM Eastern Standard Time, homebrew-request@hbd.org writes: << Stepping a Wyeast package up to just shy of 600 mL in two steps does not produce enough yeast for a 5 gallon batch. A standard, 50 mL Wyeast pack can be stepped up to 500 mL in the first step, then that can be stepped up to 5 L (or less; 2 L is adequate for a 19 L (5 gallon) batch). Remember the 10X rule: step the yeast up by no more than 10X the volume they are in (search for my many posts on this subject or read my BT article in the Jan. 1999 issue, if you have it). >> This paragraph runs contrary to my experience and to what I've read in Papazian, Miller, Noonan, et.al. 500 ml for a standard ale, l L for a lager, 4L for a barley wine or other high gravity beer should be sufficient. Keith MacNeal Worcester, MA Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000 23:32:18 +1100 From: "Phil & Jill Yates" <yates at acenet.com.au> Subject: Feeling A Bit Skunky It is just possible that my post on receiving a bottle of skunk odour may have painted Mr Kruse in a bad light. It was not my intention to suggest that Mr Kruse had acted in a vindictive, malicious or vengeful manner, nor that it was his intention to destabilise my marriage and destroy any credibility I may have achieved as Baron of Burradoo. The fact that all these things happened cannot be blamed on poor old Ray. It was I who begged, pleaded and wrote threatening letters demanding a bottle of skunk odour. And Ray was kind enough to oblige. If there is anything to be learnt from the exercise I will say this. Having extensively sniffed the bottle, I can safely conclude that I have never produced a light struck beer. I can also safely conclude that it is not my intention to ever smell a skunk again. Which brings me to a difficult matter. Having concluded all of this, how do I now return your bottle to you Ray? I don't want it anymore. And now I have again offended Eric for the umpteenth time, as he writes: > Phil claims to know what "felisomoto" means, yet balks at interpreting >"domo >arigato" >He insists in using my name in non-brewing related posts, and >continues to >ignore the fact that Mike *loved* my pumpkin lager Well Eric, if you continue to write in combinations of Japanese/Italian I will continue to deny any knowledge of what you are writing about. And please drink less of that pumpkin lager before posting to the HBD. Why don't you send me a bottle for appraisal? It surely can't be any worse than what Ray sent me (though privately Ray tells me it is). On a final note, it is good to see the odd burst of gun fire appearing from Doc Pivo but of course there is always someone waiting in the wings to shoot him down. Steve Alexander was still looking up reference papers when Mr Meeker saw the opportunity to be in first with his two bobs worth. Mr Meeker has assumed the role of resident scientist in here though again privately Ray tells me he can't make a decent beer (Sorry Ray, I couldn't resist!) Cheers Phil Yates Second In Charge To Wes Smith Baron of The Southern Highlands Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000 10:17:02 -0500 From: Jeff Renner <nerenner at umich.edu> Subject: Re: Head space speculation Dave Riedel <RiedelD at pac.dfo-mpo.gc.ca> is worrying: >How much CO2 is produced by a 7.5 gallon batch? That is, >at what point will the beer not produce enough CO2 to protect >itself from oxidation? Is there a hope in hell that this batch >won't be oxidized? No problem. Using ballpark values and big rounding off, let's assume that you have a 12P (1.048) wort that is 50% fermentable (that's typical, apparent attenuation is ~75% because of the depressing effect on SG of ethanol). Since a degree plato is 1 gram per 100 ml, you have 12 g/ liter of dissolved material, half of which is fermentable, so you have ~ 6 grams of fermentable material per 100 ml. A gram of fermentable material will produce approximately 1/2 gram each of ethanol and CO2, so this will produce ~3 grams CO2 per 100 m, or 30 g/liter Since 7.5 gallons (US, or were you using Imperial up there Dave?) is very roughly 30 liters, you have ~900 grams of CO2 produced. CO2 has a molecular weight of 44 g/mole, you have roughly 20 moles of CO2 produced. A mole of any gas occupies 22.4 liters, so you have ~440 liters, or ~115 gallons. This ignores the CO2 that remains dissolved in the beer, but who cares? You've got about 10 times as much as you need to fill your headspace. Jeff -=-=-=-=- Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan USA, c/o nerenner at umich.edu "One never knows, do one?" Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000 10:40:08 -0500 From: "Nathaniel P. Lansing" <delbrew at compuserve.com> Subject: Yeast bugs vs good beer Jeff Spies defends Mike's posting In #4244, >> nor did he make any direct accusations about any *intention* on the part of Wyeast to put these critters in their yeast packets.<< Huh? do I get a different edition? M.M. >> Planned obsolescence? Draw your own conclusions.<< Jeff states his confidence in Mike's ability, OK granted, then I guess he would have recognized if the slow growing cocci were pediococcus; and since he didn't say it was I will assume then it wasn't. He doesn't even state that the _unknown_organism is a wort spoilage organism. J.S.>> He also said that N=1 for his "test". << Are you say he found _one_ of these critters in each smack-pak? A few stray _unknown_organisms in your pitching yeast, a big problem? Who autoclaves their fermenter? Who can say with certainty that the pitching yeast is the problem with stray organisms in their finished beer? ............ Jim Liddel say, >>It is time that we all begin to really question all yeast suppliers about their qc/qa procedures etc. This goes for wyeast, White, rtp, lallemand and any others.<< So they all have some contamination., I've known this for years. Scott Laboratories will send you a "typical" analysis which states (working from memory) 2000 lactic bacteria and 20,000 anaerobes per gram (or is that vice versa) in Danstar yeast. Cooper's also publishes this information. Their yeast still makes fine beer. I would bet the yeast producers QA/QC far surpass that of the homebrewing environment. So what's the worry? Do you think large commercial breweies are working with 100% pure pitching yeast? They acid wash each pitching. The point is to maximize the yeast/"other" ratio to have the yeast overwhelm the bacteria so the flavors derived from bacteria are sub-threshold. Acid washing also deflocculates the yeast and removes trub from the cell walls to help shorten lag times, again to overwhelm any effects from the_ever-present_bacteria. That is paraphrased from an assistant brewer, Seibel graduate, of Latrobe Brewing. Even if you had a laboratory and picked a single cell and grew it in autoclaved flasks under sterile conditions, wouldn't you be pitching it into a rather unsterile fermenter? The yeast companies are faced with the task of providing reasonably pure yeast at a reasonably affordable price. They could provide sterile cultures at $125 apiece but who would benefit from that? None of us here would be using them!(price out ATCC sterile cultures and be prepared to prove your laboratory is set up to handle them to their satisfaction) Or you can plate yeast out in your "sterile" home laboratory and have a "sterile" pitching yeast, oops, then there's that darn "sanitized" fermenter again. Consider the Burton Union system, how sterile is that? It still makes fine beer. I like to see a bacterialogic report from _that_ yeast. Pitching yucky yeast in Pittsburgh, Del Lansing Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000 09:49:52 -0600 From: rlabor at lsumc.edu (LaBorde, Ronald) Subject: RE: Transporting full carboys >From: "Foster Jason" <jasfoster at hotmail.com> >My question is this: Is there a method of transporting my carboy that would >minimize the oxidation risk? If not, I will have to let the opportunity >pass. I do not see any oxidation risk by transporting a just pitched carboy, actually a bit of oxygenation at this point would be beneficial. Once the fermentation has completed, with a good airlock, there should be no oxygen inside left to cause any problems. Just keep it sealed and the agitation should not cause you problems. My club brews larger batches (45 gal), and us lucky brewers get to take home 5 gal. each, pitch and ferment. It has never been a problem with oxygenation because of transportation. What has been a problem, is when one of us dropped his carboy, just as he was putting it into his vehicle - what a disaster. Most of the savvy participants have gone to the use of Corny kegs used as fermenters. I have done this also for the last several brews. This is much safer than carboys for transportation. I removed the in and out fittings and tubing. Then, I place a small square of aluminum foil over each open port. The small o ring from the quick connect (now removed) works well to hold the foil down over the port fitting. When I get home a few hours later, I remove one foil cover and place a piece of vinyl tubing over the fitting, tie wrap it tight, and place the other end into a jar of water. Ron Ronald La Borde - Metairie, Louisiana - rlabor at lsumc.edu http://members.xoom.com/rlabor/ Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000 10:06:33 -0600 From: "Paddock Wood Brewing Supplies" <orders at paddockwood.com> Subject: RE: PBW expense "Troy Hager" <thager at hcsd.k12.ca.us> asks about PBW concentration and expense. You don't have to fill your 5 gal kegs with PBW solution to clean them. You can use half a gallon and spin your kegs to soak each part (4 turns if the keg is on its side). The PBW solution will work fine this way. It lasts for some time, but I wouldn't recommend using the same solution more than overnight. 5Star recommends different PBW solution strengths for different purposes: (.56% sol by weight) At 3/4 oz per gal for 20-25 minutes for fermentors, conditioning, aging kegs. 30 minutes (0.75% sol by weight) At 1 oz/gal and 100-160F for Brew kettles and lauter tuns you can soak each surface for 30 minutes, then move the solution to the next surface. Start with the most soiled and progress to the least. (1.1% weight) 1.5 oz/gal for multiple brew sessions or heavier soils. 2-4 oz / gal room temp overnight soaking for stubborn stains, or oxidized protein (read boil-over gunk on your nice shiny kettle). So the exact concentration isn't crucial as long as you compensate with water temp and/or soaking time, but I don't think mixed solution remains effective for more than a day. We sell it for Powder Brewery Wash PBW www.paddockwood.com/catalog_chemicals.html#CLEANING $16.15(CAN) 1 lb $35.00 (CAN) 2.2 lbs (1kg) But the big breweries get it a LOT cheaper. regards, Stephen Ross -- "Vitae sine cerevesiae sugat." ______________________________________________ Paddock Wood Brewing Supplies, Saskatoon, SK orders at paddockwood.com www.paddockwood.com Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000 11:18:53 -0500 From: Dave Burley <Dave_Burley at compuserve.com> Subject: Never, say never, secondary fermentation Brewsters: George De Piro says that when you get high growth rate you always get high fusel alcohols and believes it is an absolute. Not so. As I understand it, If the supply of simple nitrogen from things other than amino acids is sufficient, then no amino acids will be deaminated and no fusel oils formed. How likely is this under normal beer fermentations? Not very likely, unless liberal use is made of ammonium phosphate and such, which I don't think anyone would suggest with beer from an all grain wort. George's point to continuously feed an aerated starter is a good one, however, I don't understand why yeast would consume their glycogen just because they are in a solution with low nutrients and oxygenated. And I have never read that oxygen enhances autolysis, if that's what George is suggesting. Point is, as George says, is to manitain good nutrition and you will have no problems. A few drops of your starter and Clinitest will help you know if your starter needs an addition of carbohydrates. Adding wort or extract will assure FAN nitrogen is also available for growth as it goes along with the carbohydrates. - ------------------------------ Eric Murray asks questions about secondary fermentations. I generally rack to the secondary just after the head falls. This gives me a managable fermentation in a carboy and a good clean yeast cake which can be recycled. It is important to rack while the fermentation is still roiled as this gives you a good sample of both flocculent and powdery yeast to carry forward, should you choose to re-use it. - ------------------------------ Keep on Brewin' Dave Burley Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000 08:43:00 -0800 From: "jim williams" <jim&amy at macol.net> Subject: Jason Foster asks about lagering in restaurant walk-in > I have been given the opportunity to use a spare corner of a walk-in cooler > of a friend who runs a restaurant. However, there is no opportunity to > actually brew at that site. Which means, consequently, that if I wished to > use it, I would have to find a way to transport my carboy (I make 23 litre > batches)full of wort/beer to this site. do you keg? Since your going to be lagering, you can rack to a keg, blow out the o2 with co2 and safely transport it to the restaurant. That also makes it more difficult for "those guys in the kitchen" to get "curious" about all that beer in the walkin! They'd need the fittings to get it out! If you don't already keg, It may also be worth investing a little $ in a keg, to do your lagering/transporting in. Carboys are dangerous, you WILL break one, and possibly slice your arm in half. It's just a matter of time. good luck, jim Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000 10:31:54 -0600 From: MVachow at newman.k12.la.us Subject: Agent of Pivo As the agent of Dr. Pivo, I am writing to take exception to Alan Meeker's revision of Dr. Pivo's written comments from HBD #3259. Although I do not deny Mr. Meeker's right to dispute my client's opinions, I do wish that he had reprinted Dr. Pivo's words verbatim. When Dr. Pivo writes about his "serrindopodous" yeast pitching practices, he may or may not be punning. Dr. Pivo might have meant that the practice was a kind of happy good fortune or he might have been making an oblique reference to Grendel or some other jagged (serrin) two (di) footed (podous) creature and, more importantly, to the "monstrous" ruminations of Michel Foucault, Jacques Derrida, Helen Cixous and other opaque French philosophers, all in effort to draw attention to the stark, multi-layered irony of his idiom. After all, although he mispells "recommendation" (another bald liberty taken by Mr. Meeker), he correctly uses the homonyms "cite" and "site" and spells correctly the difficult word "disseminate." Do I know what Dr. Pivo meant? Of course not, and that's just the point. You cannot know Dr. Pivo; he is far too clever. He is a portrait of a man painting a self-portrait while looking in mirror. He is you. Or not. Beer me, Ed Bougewank Cybergeek Celebrities Date: Tue, 15 Feb 2000 13:28:12 -0500 From: "Alan Meeker" <ameeker at welchlink.welch.jhu.edu> Subject: Son of Pivo What's up with this Dr. Pivo concept? First there is one, then there are many, then they have left the digest, now he/they is/are back! Don't know the latest post was merely baiting or not but I do have to take exception with the idea that the need for high pitching rates are some sort of myth! PIVO(S): If you search the archives, you will find that there is an "exact" recommendation of pitching rates and number of generation turnovers. You will also find that "nobody has done anything about finding out if these numbers are relevant." **Excuse me?? Have you read /any/ of the brewing basic science literature?? If you are looking to make "Budweiser", then I think that this is advice well worth heading. ** Ahhh so it's the high pitching rate that makes Budweiser so insipid eh?? If you are looking to make your "best beer", it is probably well worth ignoring. ** Or if you're looking to make the most contaminated beer you can make that doesn't ferment completely and has a generous yeast autolysis nose... My own solution was a serendipitous combination of underpitching, and lower than recommended temperatures.... made the smoothest and richest beer I've yet tasted. Since then I've consistently split my ferments, and proved to myself many times that the "minimum daily requirement" is the result of industrial brewing who has reinforced its belief in itself. ** So, you've changed at least two variables and are making anecdotal claims about pitching rates? How are you quantifying these pitch rates? How far are you "underpitching?" That this forum continually cites the information disseminated from an industry where we all know where it is heading (tasteless, and lasts forever), is a sad comment indeed. ** This forum cites /all kinds/ of information - some good some bad. If you are considering pitching rates in general, I would say, if you're a bit behind on your hygiene, a healthy pitching rate is a good way to protect against infection.... if you are looking for good beer you'll just have to play with it (one yeast strain.... lots of 'spurments"). ** protection against infection is but one (albeit an important one) reason to pitch high. Given that homebrewing is of necessity an unsterile process this alone is pretty much enough reason to do so. I am always scepitcle of the reporter who says: "Last week I brewed a Belgium wit, and English Bitter, a Czech Pilsner, and a Stout.... and they were all great!" ** Turn that healthy skepticism against yourself - why should we take your word that pitching rates don't matter? A life time is probably enough to learn two styles correctly.... in North Amerika they become "experts" on about two styles a week.... if failing to match someone else's evaluation, then there's is "more authentic". ** What is the purpose of this xenophobic non-sequitor? -Alan Meeker, Baltimore MD "Amerika" Date: Mon, 14 Feb 2000 21:35:30 +0100 From: "Dr. Pivo" <dp at pivo.w.se> Subject: Pitching rates. It was asked by Tim Sigafoose: > Are > there reasons other than healthy fermentations why one would be > concerned with pitching rates? There are three possible correct answers to this question: a) Increased esters. b) Encouragement of the production of higher alcohols. and... c) Nobody knows. And the correct answer is...... "c". If you search the archives, you will find that there is an "exact" reccomendation of pitching rates and number of generation turnovers. You will also find that "nobody has done anything about finding out if these numbers are relevant." If you are looking to make "Budweiser", then I think that this is advice well worth heading. If you are looking to make your "best beer", it is probably well worth ignoring. My own solution was a serrindipodous combination of underpitching, and lower than reccommended temperatures.... made the smoothest and richest beer I've yet tasted. Since then I've consistantly split my ferments, and proved to myself many times that the "minimum daily requirement" is the result of industrial brewing who has reinforced its belief in itself. That this forum continually cites the information disseminated from an industry where we all know where it is heading (tasteless, and lasts forever), is a sad comment indeed. One would think that "Homebrewers" would be more interested in creating something that "perhaps had a short shelf life, but was brilliant in it's day(s)", but that seems not the case. If you are considering pitching rates in general, I would say, if you're a bit behind on your hygiene, a healthy pitching rate is a good way to protect against infection.... if you are looking for good beer you'll just have to play with it (one yeast strain.... lots of 'spurments"). I am always scepitcle of the reporter who says: "Last week I brewed a Belgium wit, and English Bitter, a Czech Pilsner, and a Stout.... and they were all great!" With good reason these particular beers usually stop becoming available at there nation's borders... it takes an extreme familiarity of style, and attention to detail. A life time is probably enough to learn two styles correctly.... in North Amerika they become "experts" on about two styles a week.... if failing to match someone else's evaluation, then there's is "more authentic". ooh boy. If you visit a "traditional brewery" (there's not that many left) you will be surprised at two things: 1) How variant there methods are form that that is reccomended here. 2) How bloody brilliant there beer is. If I was going to make a reccomendation, I would pick out Nuwarelia in Sri Lanka, where they haven't changed a brick since the British left.... it sure don't travel, but on site might remind you why you wanted to become a homebrewer. A closer to hand example for the Yanks might be "Belize". They haven't been able to afford to change anything, and you might see the value in that. Elsewise you might listen to the industrial dogma that is spouted here, that is .... how should I put this delicately.... yes, diplomatically.... "crap" Dr. Pivo Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000 11:33:29 -0500 From: Vance J Stringham <vancenjeannie at juno.com> Subject: RE: "George de Piro" 's Vance's Long Fermentation Rechecking my notes: Some rookie mistakes become very obvious. George asked what my pitching temperature was. 82 degrees! YIKES! Also, according to my notes, a 12 hour lag time would be a very liberal estimate. I pitched somewhere around 11am. When I awoke the next day and checked the brew (around 8am) the foam was already blowing out of the air lock. That is when I immediately put a blow hose on the carboy and prayed against contamination. Now in the secondary it is now bubbling back down around once every 35 seconds, about 15 seconds quicker than before I racked it over. I believe this would lend credence to George's comments on stuck fermentation. The agitation of the yeast during racking gave them kick they needed to get going again - what do you think, George? My SG was 1.049 and the mid gravity is 1.015, satisfactory I dare say. The aroma is very nice, as apposed to the telltale sourness of contamination, and the taste is sweet so I know there is still work for the yeast. At this point in my brewing experience, as long as what comes out does not taste like a tea made of dirty socks and rotting vegetable matter, I am happy - but striving for bigger and better successes. Vance J. Stringham Old Channel Swill Homebrewing Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000 09:19:28 -0800 From: "Kevin Imel" <kimel at moscow.com> Subject: O2, Pitch Rates, Higher Alcohols Hi All, I read with interest George de Piro's comments (HBD #3250) about aeration and yeast growth. I have also been following the on again, off again thread about higher alcohols causing intensivied hang overs over the past several years. So I couldn't help but ask the obvious question: Would one make better beer if they achieved a "high enough" (whatever that is...that is perhaps a different discussion) pitch rate and didn't aerate the wort at all beyond what couldn't be helped during transfer to the fermenter? Most of us (all?) intentionally aerate our wort via whatever means we think is most economical or whatever is at hand. I am a carboy shaker myself but only because Santa refuses to give me an O2 setup for Christmas. Given "normal" aeration, just how many of these higher alcohols and other undesirable products of reproduction (left over massage oils, candle stubs, empty chocolate boxes, and so on) are we getting because we aerate our wort instead of pitching massive amounts of yeast? Would it be better if we just put the yeasties to work in the wort instead of letting them reproduce first? Are these "bad things" metabolized during fermentation and it doesn't matter what happens at the beginning? Cheers! Kevin ___________________________ Kevin Imel - KF7CN DN16lv kimel at moscow.com kf7cn at qsl.net Palouse, Washington USA "The only way to truely fail is to fail to try" Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000 12:21:12 -0500 From: "Czerpak, Pete" <Pete.Czerpak at siigroup.com> Subject: continuous O2 and honey post and high trappist gravity While I do agree with what George Depiro has commented upon I think if you look at my post and even the quote George uses - "in fact, the yeast are fed sugar and O2 incrementally to get them to reproduce rather than make beer. since they are continuously using the O2 when reproducing, it is best to feed them continuously in the first few hours of fermentation when they most need to reproduce to get a high cell count. if I had a pump, I would certainly use it for the first few hours after pitching." My last line above is the most important - O2 only during the few few hours of fermentation. not throughout the fermentation or anything else as the problems george discusses can and will occur. I do however maintain that O2 for the first few hours is good especially for those people who do not pitch the optimal amount of cells (ie. those who scale up once or even twice from a smack pack or pitch into high gravity or only use 1 packet of dry nottingham, etc.) where some yeast growth is needed to get to get optimal levels. I would hazard the guess that a little more than half the HBD readers make a twice scaled atleast starter and the other slightly less than half just pitch pretty much minimal levels since they dont have the time, dont believe whatever. I know because I probably went 4 years until I started making starters and saw the improvement. most of us do this, eventually try a starter, and probably never go back to just using a smack pack. About the use of honey which I originally commented upon a few days ago, I do think that the use of 2 lbs of honey in a 5 gallon batch could be reason for a slightly long ferment, although inadequate yeast at pitching may also be the trouble. My thinking is along the lines, that using 2lbs (which should contribute about 85 gravity points or so to a 5 gallon batch), is about 33% of the total sugars present assuming a starting gravity of about 1.050 or so which requires about 250 total gravity points. this may be enough to leave the wort nutrient deficient. also, if the wort was from malt extract and not all-grain (don't remember if this was the case), it may also be additional reason for deficiency since I think it is thought that malt extract is generally deficient is some nitrogen containing compounds, whereas the allgrain worts are not. Rich mentions his heavy Trappist ale at about 1.040ish after primary. I point towards the use of dutch malt extract (Laaglander) as possibly the culprit as it is thought to generally finish pretty high. you do use quite a bit of it (~50%), so the presence of it may be the cause. lack of hops and the high finishing gravity even with high alcohol are giving that sweet taste. usually belgians finish pretty low so that the low amount of hops do not interfere with the lack of residual sugar. however in your brew, the huge amount of sugar remaining, leaves the hops a bit low. You have brewed as you say, more of a belgian scottish ale than a high alcohol belgian beer. not a problem as long as you dont mind sweet/malt instead of hops or a balance. maybe brew a light hoppy beer and blend the two to get a more balanced brew. are you still seeing belgian ale characteristics like neat esters and such? I also would like a contest that I was able to compare multiple brews of the same variety. I have often had 2 differing batches at the same time and wondered which is closer to style (this happens when I brew IPAs a lot). for example I have a IPA brewed with mostly 2 row and crystal with Wyeast 1028 and all cascades hops. I then have an IPA brewed with 50% munich and chinook, centenial, and cascades with 1028. both hopped and dry hopped to same times. FWIW, just my comments. Pete Albany, NY Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000 11:03:09 -0800 From: "Troy Hager" <thager at hcsd.k12.ca.us> Subject: Pitching Rates Fellow Brewers, This discussion about lowering your pitching rates for better beer has really piqued my interest. This tears down *every* piece of information I have ever read regarding this topic. I have always been led to believe the "more is better" approach for pitching volumes and have read many times that in homebrewing it is hard to over pitch yeast. I have often repitched much of the previous batch's yeast and have gotten my lag times down to around 2 hours. I felt I was doing great until I read this discussion and wondered if I have gone to the other extreme. As Dave B says, "yeast growth with the associated by-products are an important part of beer's flavor. Pitching larger quanities of yeast in fact "dumbs down" the impact of the yeast growth on beer flavor." I take that to mean, short lag times, ie. little yeast growth, means a "dumber" beer as Dave and Dr. Pivo are saying. Dave also says, " I think the middle ground is an important place to consider..." I was wondering if he (or anyone) would be willing to give a middle ground lag time for homebrewers to shoot for. Assuming excellent sanitization , what is a reasonable lag time that would allow for enough yeast growth to realize the benifits in flavor? Troy Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000 14:35:00 -0500 From: "FLEMING, JOE" <JOE.FLEMING at spcorp.com> Subject: bottle fur Yuk! Who'd want to homebrew if you get furry beer? I'm going to make the ultimate Pivo-esque statement and suggest that we not pitch at all. End homebrewing as a tribute to nihilism and anti-fur protesters. Joe Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000 16:42:36 -0500 From: "Russ Hobaugh" <Russ_Hobaugh at erm.com> Subject: Brewpubs in central Jersey I will be near Princeton NJ on business the next two weeks. Any good brewpubs within a decent driving distance? I have tried Triumph and was most unimpressed. TIA Russ Hobaugh Goob' Dob Brewery Birdsboro PA Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000 22:05:19 +0000 From: William Frazier <billfrazier at worldnet.att.net> Subject: Target hops I've been working on a Fuller's ESB type ale for some time now. Trying to capture that caramel-like flavor that you get from the keg version. I use a Polarware brewing kettle with a false bottom and I like to use leaf hops. They form a nice filter bed after settling while the aroma hops steep. I've not been able to get the hops used by Fullers in leaf form locally and I looked for them in every homebrew shop website I could locate, in the brewing magazine ads, to no avail. At last, today when I paid a visit to one of the local shops, there they were. British Target Leaf Hops 10.3%AA. Just arrived, not opened yet, but available. I'm just a satisified customer, not an owner or relative or anything like that but I told the shop owner, Scott McLeroy, that I would pass the word around. If you want some Target Leaf Hops you can get them at; Homebrew Pro Shoppe 11938 W. 119th Street Overland Park, KS 66213 www.brewcat.com ps. He also just received a case of Centennial Leaf Hops 9.0%AA. Bill Frazier Olathe, Kansas Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 17 Feb 2000 09:26:04 +1100 From: Steve Lacey <stevel at sf.nsw.gov.au> Subject: oxidation of wort/translations Jason Foster worries about oxidation of his fermented wort due to agitation when transporting by vehicle to lager in a friends cool room. My experience on this is as follows: last winter in Australia I was brewing some lager styles. I transported my carboy to work (where there is a spare fridge) in the car. Yes it gets a bit of agitation, but as long as you keep the airlock in, you are really only getting CO2 in the air space. Even if you've opened the fermenter, the CO2 released by agitation will displace any air. Just observe how crazy the airlock gets when you hit a pothole! There is, therefore, no oxygen to dissolve into the wort. Anyway, even if this explanation sucks, I certainly had no problems doing this and produced some very drinkable, award-winning pilseners. - ----------- In the growing tiff between Fouch and Yates I would just like to step in and translate an obscure term used by Phil for the benefit of mildly interested onlookers. Chelodina longicolis, mentioned by Phil in HBD3249, is the eastern [Australian] long-necked tortoise. A cute little beastie with anunfortunate propensity for pissing a skunky urine on you when being handled and, if you're not careful, latching onto the handlers private parts with a vicious jaw locking bite. Be very wary of Phil's long-necked tortoise should ever you seek to visit him in outback Burradoo! I hear his trouser python is a bit aggressive as well! As for "domo arigato" - I'll leave that one alone, thank you very much! Steve Lacey Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 17 Feb 2000 09:15:04 +1000 (EST) From: k.g.mclean at cqu.edu.au (Kevin Mc Lean) Subject: Re: Braggott mixtures. Eric Fouch asks: In the spirit of good brewing, has anybody attempted a braggot by blending a >barleywine and a sack mead? Yes and no. I was once bottling mead and braggott at the same time, had a bit left over from each, so I blended them for a joke. I called the resulting mixture a 'maggott' and thought "well, I'll take it out for a joke at the next medieval banquet I go to". The unfortunate thing about this was that I shared it out a year later at a banquet, the brew tasted great and I couldn't remember the exact details of how I made the damn thing... I'm still kicking myself. So yes, you probably won't be wasting your time if you try that experiment and the result will probably be drinkable. But for God's sake write down the details and let me know if you get a good blend. Hope this helps. Regards, Kevin. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 17 Feb 2000 07:25:00 -0800 From: Michael Kowalczyk <mikekowal at megsinet.net> Subject: Pellets in the mash tun I've come to the conclusion that I can't use pellets in my system. No matter what I try I just keep getting clogged. No big deal - just keep using whole hops. The problem becomes what do I do with 1.5 lb of pellets? After reading about the people who use their aroma hops in the mash tun, I got to wondering if I could use them this way! The question becomes, does any of the pellet spooge make it to the boiler? If not I think I can dispose of them this way! Otherwise Al K. can come and pick them up. - Mike from New Lenox, Il. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000 21:23:44 EST From: BIL2112L at aol.com Subject: Re high S.G. Wow! Where to start. 1: With a high gravity beer, patience is a must. I regularly brew in the 1070 range and I keep my brews in the secondary for at least three weeks sometimes longer.With a gravity that high, I believe that a good dose of champagne yeast would be helpful to help this beer finish.2:As far as hop bitterness goes, if you have a reasonably low F. G. (1020 range) this shouldn't be too bad. Keep in mind that laaglander extract finishes with a slight residual sweetness. If you wish to increase the bitterness, boiling your hops in water should be fine just be careful not to over do it. 3:As far as adding yeast at bottling, I would say yes. Not only is this a traditional Belgian practice but, it will help give you viable yeast for conditioning. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 14 Feb 2000 21:29:16 -0500 From: "Michael Maag" <maagm at rica.net> Subject: Secondary fermenter "Murray, Eric" asks about secondary fermenting and ales.. . What are the advantages if you bottle or keg after 2 to 3 weeks in the carboy? If there are significant advantages, do they out weigh the risk of contamination during the transfer? At what point is it best to transfer into the second carboy and is it critical to get the timing right>>>> For ales, I have had excellent results by waiting until the fermentation lock bubbles are more than 90 seconds apart, then racking to a 5 gal carboy. Fermentation is pretty much complete at this stage, unless the temperature dropped and caused the slow-down. Since the sugars are used up, there is not much to worry about regarding contamination. Then I add disolved gelatin and chill to drop the yeast. This takes about 4 days at 40 F. I then rack to a corny and force carbonate. This results in ale that is clear, tastes great, and travels well, either in the keg or counter pressure bottle filled bottles. This proceedure would not be as benificial if one bottles or keg conditions their beer. Getting the ale off the primary yeast at the end of fermentation gives you plenty of time to drop the yeast without autolysis worries. Cheers, Mike Maag, in the Shenandoah Valley Return to table of contents
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