HOMEBREW Digest #3564 Fri 23 February 2001

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  haha - I laugh at myself Brent (acez)
  RE: Fermenting Pepsi ("Dennis Lewis")
  Re: How about Riggwelter? (Jeff Renner)
  Re: The solution to pollution... (Joel Plutchak)
  Re: Laaglander DME (Jeff Renner)
  Miami, FL Brewpubs ("H. Dowda")
  calibration (Marc Sedam)
  German Extracts ("H. Dowda")
  Thermometer Calibration (Nathan Kanous)
  Re: underattenuation question (Paul Shick)
  RE: Central Canada indeed (snort, harrumph) (Brian Lundeen)
  Guiness/Murphys/Beamish ("Houseman, David L")
  Electric kettle questions ("Bruce Garner")
  Re: Responsible Brewing/ Fermented Pepsi/ Diacetyl ("B.R. Rolya")
  re: diacetyl (Scott Perfect)
  RE: HopBack ("Daniel C Stedman")
  Stored yeast (B2oper8tr)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Thu, 22 Feb 2001 01:11:27 -0500 From: acez at mindspring.com Subject: haha - I laugh at myself Brent Yeah, I know, I know. I don't think I was trashed, but maybe. In general, I just wanted to know some more specifics as to what was happening in my pepsi bottle...the science behind it. I was just too lazy to do the specific gravity readings. I figured some of you guys might have tried this before. Something to the effect of "Actually, yeah, the citrus smell is probably due to lactobacillus. It shouldn't have much of an odor at all." was what I was anticipating. Looking back at the post, there are some dumb questions though. Heh, oh well. I'll let you guys know how it turns out. I think I'll try a bigger batch (in much more formal and sanitary conditions). Thanks for the replies, guys. Later, Casey Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 22 Feb 2001 08:58:57 -0500 From: "Dennis Lewis" <dblewis at lewisdevelopment.com> Subject: RE: Fermenting Pepsi A fair number of years ago, I had considered adding Coca Cola to a porter to spice it up a bit. As I recall, the SG of Coke was around 1040. Adding regular Coke straight from the bottle into the fermenter, or perhaps into the last few minutes of the boil would most likely dilute the original beer. If you can get the straight cola syrup, then adding a pound or two at the end of the boil would punch up the alcohol a bit and give you some concentrated flavors without diluting the main brew. I decided against it for a number of reasons, mostly the huge phosphoric acid contribution that two 2-liter bottles would make in a five gallon batch. Between the high acidity and the fully fermentable sugars in the Coke, I decided that it would make a really thin bodied brew. I suppose that I could have added CaCO3 to adjust the pH and acid content, and a ton of dextrine malt or crystal malt, but why mess up 5 gallons of good porter? Dennis Warren, OH, 'bout 4 hrs down the pike from Jeff Renner. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 22 Feb 2001 09:28:08 -0500 From: Jeff Renner <nerenner at umich.edu> Subject: Re: How about Riggwelter? "Alan McLeod" <elal at pei.sympatico.ca> asked >Recently when in a jurisdiction that actually has good liqour stores - >Ontario - I got to have a Riggwelter (I think that's the spelling) from >the Black Sheep Brewery in Yorkshire. As with the Old Speckled Hen >postings, has anyone tried to make this ale? How about with extract? This one isn't in Protz's "Brew Your Own...", but it is in his "Real Ale Almanac," with more detail than Old Speckled Hen. Protz notes that this brewery was started in 1992 by Paul Theakston, who left Theakston's Brewery in Masham (of Old Peculier fame) following the takeover by Scottish & Newcastle. I'll try to transcribe this more accurately. "Riggwelter "OG 1056 ABV 5.9% "Ingredients: Maris Otter pale malt (70%), crystal malt (6%), chocolate malt [no percentage given], sugar (10%), torrefied wheat (9%), roast malt extract (0.005%). 60 units of color. Goldings, Fuggles, Progress whole hops. Late hopped with Goldings. 39 units of bitterness." I'm not sure how much chocolate malt, but as the other ingredients add up to 95%, it is probably 5%. That is pretty high, though. As for extract - well, I'll leave that to someone else. And, as always, yeast is an important part of any clone. I don't know of any Yorkshire yeasts. Many of them require special fermenters - Yorkshire squares, to work properly. Good luck. 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: Thu, 22 Feb 2001 08:31:56 -0600 (CST) From: Joel Plutchak <plutchak at ncsa.uiuc.edu> Subject: Re: The solution to pollution... In HBD #3563, Mike Szwaya said: >If you're *really* concerned, build a little biofilter of organic >material like spent grains & hops and yard waste (leaves, etc.) >that you can pour your solutions through. Reminds me of an interesting practice I just heard about regarding compost heaps. Some guy on a garden show said you could help the health of a compost heap by pouring a beer on it every now and then, which he demonstrated using something from a big (22-oz?) swing-top bottle. He said the yeast was good for it (without going into the difference between bottle-conditioned beer and ultra-filtered and pasteurized stuff, but what do you expect from a garden show?). Since I compost my grain along with yard waste, I'm gonna start dumping the initial rinse from my (just emptied) fermenters on the heap. I'd never thought of doing that before. >In fact, we even recommend that people wash their cars on the >lawn... In some municipalities (like mine), parking a car on anything but pavement or gravel is against city code. == Joel Plutchak Fermenting and composting in East-central Illinois Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 22 Feb 2001 09:52:10 -0500 From: Jeff Renner <nerenner at umich.edu> Subject: Re: Laaglander DME "Steven Parfitt" <the_gimp98 at hotmail.com> asked >Laaglander light DME is noted for it's high content of nonfermentables. >Since it is a DME, can one add it to water and mash it by heating ot 150F >for about an hour to reduice this content? No, this won't work, because there are no enzymes in the extract. It is essentially sugar. >If not, can a minimash be performed by adding say a pound of American Pale >Malt (High enzime content) for each 3 Lbs of Laaglander, and heating it to >150F to mash it. Will this help lower my final gravity when using Laaglander >light DME? Good thinking. This *might* work, but somehow I'm doubtful. I'll leave it up to others who know more about enzyme cleaving of polysaccharides and such. The higher molecular weight sugars may resist breaking down into simpler sugars. This made me laugh remembering how bad our sources of information were back in the bad old days. Sometime in the 70's I bought a book on homebrewing. This author wrote that he had the secret to brewing that all the other authors had missed. He had visited a brewery and found out that you had to steep your malt at 153F for an hour. But he was advocating this for *malt extract*, not grain. He wasn't sure what this would do, but he insisted it was the secret to making good beer. Every recipe (all of them extract) included this entirely unnecessary step. I thought I'd kept this book, but I haven't seen it in years. There's nothing wrong with your asking if this would work, but you aren't writing a book. And you figured out that it sounded unlikely, hence your second suggestion. Finally around 1980 I got hold of Dave Line's "Big Book of Brewing," which was a revelation! 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: Thu, 22 Feb 2001 06:57:22 -0800 (PST) From: "H. Dowda" <hdowda at yahoo.com> Subject: Miami, FL Brewpubs In Miami near SE 2nd Ave, no car. Are there any brewpubs in the area or, for that matter, in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale, woth a visit? E-mail fine. Thanks. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 22 Feb 2001 10:00:37 -0500 From: Marc Sedam <marc_sedam at unc.edu> Subject: calibration I'd highly recommend buying a lab-grade calibration thermometer. William's Brewing sells them relatively cheap ($32--NAYY) and they're worth every penny. I have a thermometer installed in my mash tun and a small dial candy thermometer for other apps. Both were off by at least 4F when I checked them, which partially explains the higher than expected terminal gravities I saw from my last few brews (temps read low). I was mashing much higher than I thought. Anyway, it's good to know that I'm now mashing at the temperatures I intended. With so many uncontrollable aspects of brewing, this is one that's easily dealt with. Cheers! Marc Sedam Chapel Hill, NC P.S. Mash hopping is goooooooooooooooooooodddddddddd! Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 22 Feb 2001 07:02:18 -0800 (PST) From: "H. Dowda" <hdowda at yahoo.com> Subject: German Extracts Haven't brewed an extract beer in years. Are there any German extracts available anymore? Seems someone was offering Munich (non-German) etc. extract. Anyone remember who? Thanks. E-mail fine. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 22 Feb 2001 09:31:22 -0600 From: Nathan Kanous <nlkanous at pharmacy.wisc.edu> Subject: Thermometer Calibration Bret, Nice job describing how Richard can calibrate his thermometer. I only saw one little piece that may have been missing. If Richard lives at a significant elevation above sea level, the boiling point of the water will be less than 212 deg F (all this coming from a fellow flatlander). So, if you live at a high elevation, you need to amend the boiling point of water accordingly and consult someone who really knows how much different it will be. Otherwise, your procedural recommendation was excellent. I wonder how much this lower boiling point effects hop utilization while brewing / boiling on the top of a mountain? Brian? nathan in madison, wi Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 22 Feb 2001 11:32:28 -0500 From: Paul Shick <shick at jcu.edu> Subject: Re: underattenuation question Hello all, My thanks to all who responded to my question about underattenuation. Several suggested that out-of-calibration thermometers might have misled me about my mash temperatures, leading to more unfermentables. I plan to recalibrate all my thermometers before my next brew, so this should be easy to assess. Some others suggested that I've expected too much out of the Cooper's yeast, which has stopped at about 67% AA for these folks. I'll keep an eye on subsequent brews with other yeasts known to be high attenuators (such as the Pils with 2206 Bavarian lager yeast fermenting away in the fridge right now) to see if I'm just imagining the problem. One responder suggested a zinc or copper shortage might be stressing the yeast. Copper seems unlikely, since I used a copper immersion chiller with these batches, but zinc might be a problem. The Cleveland water analysis lists no detectable zinc. I had the impression, though, that a typical all-grain wort had plenty of zinc from the malt itself, as documented by A.J. DeLange in some 1998 posts. Steve Alexander responded to AJ's measurements, though, pointing out that most of the zinc (and other metals) ends up trapped in the hot/cold break, unavailable to the yeast. AJ's later measurements on finished beer seem to rebut this, as does earlier lab work by Narziss. I guess it's an open question, and it couldn't hurt to add a small amount (less than 1 gram) of zinc chloride to the wort, but I'll hold off on this until I try some of the other approaches first. Again, thanks to all who replied. Finally, Dan Steadman suggested that the conical fermentor is at fault and graciously offered to inspect it for problems until November. Thanks, Dan, but I couldn't expose you to the risk involved. You see, your suggestion prompted me to think about fermentor geometry and its effect on yeast, and I'm convinced that you're right: yeast grown in conical environments have difficulty fermenting properly because they've been warped by pressure into conical shapes. Until I get a fully functional yeast lab set up to address this question, the conical fermentor had best be kept away from impressionable young yeast. Paul Shick Happily molding yeast in Cleveland Hts, OH Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 22 Feb 2001 10:32:32 -0600 From: Brian Lundeen <blundeen at rrc.mb.ca> Subject: RE: Central Canada indeed (snort, harrumph) I simply must take fellow Brew Bomber Sean Richens to task for his misleading statement: > > It took me a second glance to realize "Central Canada" meant > Calgary! I can > hear Calgarians choking on their suds when they read that! > Central Canada > is our equivalent of the Eastern Establishment in the US. We here in Manitoba do not accept the concept of Ontario/Quebec as being Central Canada. The longitudinal center of Canada is actually just a few miles east of Winnipeg. There's even a sign to that effect where many a tourist will pull over the Winnebago and photograph themselves beside. We have the rightful claim to that title, and we are quite prepared to export our surplus mosquitoes to any region that defies us on this. As for fermented Pepsi, I've never tried that, but I did try some fermented Dr Pepper that our liquor stores sell. I believe the name on the bottle was Belle-Vue Kriek. Cheers, Brian Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 22 Feb 2001 10:58:25 -0600 From: "Houseman, David L" <David.Houseman at unisys.com> Subject: Guiness/Murphys/Beamish > There's a joke that goes something like this: A man goes into a bar and > orders three beers and proceeds to drink them himself and leaves. The > next night he does the same thing. On the third night the bartender can't > stand it any longer and asks the man why he orders three beers. The man > said that he had two brothers who lived at a great distance from one > another and they had pledged to always drink together by having one beer > for the each of them. The bartender thought this was touching and brought > the man his three beers. This continued nightly for almost a year when > one night the man comes in and orders just two beers. The bartender was > very concerned for his new friend and offered his condolences. "Why?" > asked the patron, "Do you offer me condolences." "Well," said the > bartender, "for the loss of your brother." "My brother's not dead," said > the man with a puzzeled look, "He just stopped drinking." > > As many know, in the UK, many pubs are Tied Houses; that is they only > serve the beer from one brewery to which they are "tied." I was lucky > enough to find a lovely pub in Dublin that wasn't a tied house and it > served Guinness, Beamish, and Murphy's Stout. It was here that I ordered > a pint of each, drinking alone to sample the differences between three of > the world's classic Irish Dry Stouts, fresh and together. It was here > that the equally lovely barmaid asked why I was drinking three pints my > meself? It was here that I told her the story of my two other brothers > and that we never drink alone... > > Most BJCP judges don't get the opportunity to try draft Beamish or > Murphy's, although today Guinness can be found at many restaurants and > bars throughout the USA. Finding all three together is quite rare. And > many judges still have the concept of the Dry Stout as the one produced by > Sierra Nevada and countless brewpubs. They don't recognize the lightness > of this session beer. > > Just what is a session beer? Well it's one that you will have a number of > in a single drinking session and still walk home. Most assuredly you > shouldn't be driving even after having a number of the low gravity, low > alcohol session beers. English Bitter, Mild and Irish Dry Stouts fall > into this category. > > The current BJCP style guidelines (www.bjcp.org) describes the Irish Dry > Stout. For brievity I'll not repeat it here. > > My notes from my night of sampling beers in Dublin indicate that Guinness, > Beamish and Murphy's all have similar body. Full mouthfeel but thin body. > Of the three, the Guinness seemed to have a more "watery" mouthfeel than > the other two. All have the familiar dark, black color but not entirely > opaque. All maintained a tight, creamy head that left rings of lacy foam > around the glass, each marking a long pull on my pint as if trees marking > particularly bountiful years with wide rings of sapwood. None had any > diacetyl and they all left behind low residual sweetness in the > aftertaste. All had some limited fruitiness from the ale yeast and > warmish ferment, but not as high as the English pub ales. > > There were, and are, differences in these three classic examples of the > Irish Dry Stout style. Beamish is bitter, Murphy's more bitter and > Guinness the most bitter of the three. Guinness had no hop flavor or > aroma while both the Beamish and Murphy's had low hop aroma. Murphy's > also had low to medium hop flavor while the Beamish had a solid medium hop > flavor that was on the verge of phenolic. > > Both the Guinness and Murphy's had a slight roasted barley flavor, not > nearly as pronounced as I'd remembered it at the time. There was a > subetly of roasted barley not a dominant one. The Beamish had no roasted > barley flavor but rather a chocolate malt character, again perceptable but > not dominate. > > While I didn't get the opportunity to visit either the Beamish or Murphy's > breweries, a trip to Dublin is not complete without a visit to Guinness' > St. James Gate Brewery and Pub. Actually, one takes a self directed tour > of a Guinness museum and pub where artful barmen give provide you with two > complementary pints of the freshest Guinness skillfully creasted with > shamrocks drawn in the dense foam stand by pour itself. Here the Guinness > character may truly be unique in it's freshness. The sensation of this > wonderful stout was more bitter than that which we are served here in the > States, but that could have been just my imagination since I didn't have a > side-by-side comparison. Again no hop aroma, but I did sense a slight hop > flavor. Perhaps Guinness starts out with a slight hop flavor that > diminishes rapidly. With the high hop bitterness some flavor may be > inevetiable. I only detected the slightest tinge of sourness in the > flavor. Whether Guinness does in fact add a portion of soured beer, as is > rumored, or if this "tang," as many refer to it, is a result of acidity > from the roasted barley, I can't say. But to my pallet, I just don't > detect the same level of sourness and "tang" that some other beer > afficiado's claim to find. Rather, I find that the mouthfeel of these > stouts is full but the body is light. These are light, refreshing beers, > not full-bodied beers. > > And while I was there I could not pass up the Irish Ales. > > It may just be me, but Killigan's is to Irish Ale as Budweiser is to > Pilsner Urquell. This I found out the same night that I tried three > stouts. This time I ordered the two Irish ales on tap, Kilkenny and > Smithwicks. When the barmaid asked why I was only order two pints this > time, well, I could hardly help but complete the story about my one > brother having just stopped drinking....but I digress. These two beers > were quite different. > > Kilkenny was served with nitrogen just as the Guinness stout is. This is > a deep amber/copper colored beer with rich creamy head. It had medium > diacetyl, higher than the Smithwicks, was malty sweet with a fruity > character and low hop bitteness, low hop flavor and aroma, although > balanced on the whole. Kilkenny was served warmer than the Smithwichs and > was noticeably less carbonated. > > The Smithwicks had little to no head, similar to a Kiligans in the US. It > was served quite cold and highly carbonated. Malty, fruity, with low to > medium diacetyl, this was very similar to some American microbrewed ales. > Low to medium bitterness, now hop flavor and no hop aroma, deep > amber/copper color, this ale was very clean and described by the barmaid > as "popular with the Brits as a pale ale." > > Dave Houseman > > > Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 22 Feb 2001 11:06:51 -0600 From: "Bruce Garner" <bpgarner at mailbag.com> Subject: Electric kettle questions I can report that using a 4500 at 220V water heater element I was able to raise 10 gallons of water from 60 degrees to 165 in about 2.75 hours. I used Stephen Alexander's and Kevin Eggemeyer's pre and post New Year's posts for guidance. So it looks like heater elements are feasible for hot liquor tanks. But, when I spoke about this last night at the Madison Homebrewers meeting, I suggested using three 4500W elements running at 1125W on 110V to boil 12 gallons of wort. 3375 watts combined. Two would be shut off when I got to a boil and one would be on a rheostat. One person said that I had to overcome the heat of vaporization at the boiling point and off the top of his head thought I would need as many calories to get through 212 to a full boil as I would to get from 165 to 212. If I run my elements at 110 they run cooler and I don't scorch the wort. It seems that if the elements are low in the kettle I can turn them on 15 minutes into a one hour sparge. With everything well insulated the wort should enter the kettle at an average temperature of about 165. So using Kevin's numbers for a worst case I can bring 12 gallons from 165 to 212 in 30 minutes. But I don't know how much energy it takes to get through 212 to a full boil. I also don't know if the 11.5 inch 4500W elements run at 220 will definitely scorch my wort. Does anyone have any experience to guide me here? Bruce Garner in Madison, WI Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 22 Feb 2001 12:22:29 -0500 From: "B.R. Rolya" <br at triagemusic.com> Subject: Re: Responsible Brewing/ Fermented Pepsi/ Diacetyl I've been rushing through the HBD recently because of time constraints and [insert gratuitous plug] the upcoming Best Of Brooklyn contest so I didn't see the original post but John Penn says that I said the following: >B R states > > I hate to say this, but this is more of the usual >liberal scare tactics. >> I don't recall having said this but perhaps aliens invaded my brain as I slept. Snicker if you wish, but I'm one of those tree-hugging liberals who's concerned about the environment and composts everything. In New York City. Including lugging the grain from 10 gallon brew sessions to the compost center. On foot. - ------------- As for fermented Pepsi: in high school we did experiments in fermentation and used cultured and airborne yeasts to ferment molasses and Coca-cola (too bad they didn't let us use barley & hops!). If I recall correctly, the molasses worked much better than the Coke but we still got fermentation activity out of it (although it smelled so bad I don't think anyone was tempted to drink it. And since this was in Belgium, we had plenty of other fermented beverages at our disposal.) - ------------ Jeff Renner gives a good description of diacetyl. Perhaps this has been mentioned already in reference to this thread (it certainly has been mentioned in the archives) but a good way to doctor your beer in order to perceive diacetyl is to buy imitation butter flavoring, generally found in the spice or baking section at the supermarket. It's also a good way to figure out how sensitive you are to it, especially if you do it with a group of other brewers. Start with a very small amount in a non-flavorful mega beer and slowly increase the amount and make note of when you first perceive it compared to when others first notice it. - BR Rolya Malted Barley Appreciation Society NYC http://hbd.org/mbas/ Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 22 Feb 2001 09:46:54 -0800 From: Scott Perfect <perfect at marzen.llnl.gov> Subject: re: diacetyl Jeff, in part of his helpful reply to Craig, notes: "Diacetyl is a compound (a ketone) that has a butterscotch, buttery or vanilla flavor." The perceived flavor is concentration dependent and also very individual. I cannot even describe the flavor of diacetyl, to me it tastes nothing like butter or butterscotch. Redhook ESB is another example with lots of diacetyl. Try one alongside Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. If you note a distinct flavor in the Redhook that is not in the SN, that's probably the diacetyl. I find that I can enjoy a beer like Redhook one day but may find it annoying within the next week. I need rest periods for some reason. Scott Perfect San Ramon, CA Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 22 Feb 2001 12:16:58 -0600 From: "Daniel C Stedman" <"daniel_c_stedman" at uhc.com> Subject: RE: HopBack Skotrat wrote: >You will find that I simply said that it (ChillZilla) was inferior to >the MaxiChiller. I am sure your copy of the original does an fine >job of chilling. As for me, I will stick with the original; The >MaxiChiller. I suppose you drive a Model T and live in a hut, what with your attachment to all things original. Looking at Chillzilla, I see zero difference between it and my own MaxiChiller. I would be interested in hearing about the tests that you have done that show the drastic differences in performance you speak of... Look at them both and decide for yourself whether there could really be any difference: http://store.yahoo.com/sabco/bestchiller.html http://www.pbsbeer.com/pbs/pbscat.html BTW - I do love my chiller & would recommend it to anyone. Nothing beats being able to just boil the whole thing for 15 minutes to be extra sure that it isn't harboring nasties (you do have to keep it clean, though, just like any other CF chiller). And I do think highly of Skotrat - I just think he is off-base here... Dan in Minnetonka Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 23 Feb 2001 00:08:25 EST From: B2oper8tr at aol.com Subject: Stored yeast dear fellow listers, I found a mason jar in my fridge containing Belgain trappist yeast. About an 1 and 1\2 deep in the bottom of the jar. I harvested it from a 11 gal batch of belgain dubble about 8 months ago. I filled the jar with distilled water at the time of harvest from secondary. My question is this, can I safely use this yeast in a new batch? OR should I throw it out and buy a fresh one? Many thanks,, Howard Return to table of contents
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