HOMEBREW Digest #3753 Fri 05 October 2001

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  HBD Community Red Cross Fund Status (Pat Babcock)
  Re: Freezing Wort ("Braam Greyling")
  First brew. program request ("Gerard Goossens")
  Food Grade Washer Alternative ("Mark Tumarkin")
  Freezing wort ("Micah Millspaw")
  Homebrew Pictures? (Alexandre Enkerli)
  Sweet potatos? ("Donald D. Lake")
  Cider - One More Data Point (grayling)
  Stephen's off-flavors (Bill Frazier)
  first runnings....and final amount of wort...question (leavitdg)
  Priming with corn sugar ("Tom Williams")
  Freezing Wort (Roy Roberts)
  Re: Nothing Imortant (Jim Clement)
  Old Ale Recipe ("Bissell, Todd S")
  Re: water question (Jeff Renner)
  back to school ("Joseph Marsh")
  Re: Himsbrew's Water Question (John Palmer)
  intermediate advice; racking ("Frank Tutzauer")
  Kegging ("D Perry")
  Orval culture -- what is this yeasty beastie? ("John Biggins")
  4WD/ undermodified malts./Budvar ("Stephen Alexander")
  Using a camp Chef indoors (Pet Rabbits & CO problems?) ("Gary Smith")
  Re: 4WD/ undermodified malts./Budvar (Joel Plutchak)
  ...water loss during boil (thager)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Thu, 4 Oct 2001 21:18:21 -0400 (EDT) From: Pat Babcock <pbabcock at hbd.org> Subject: HBD Community Red Cross Fund Status Greetings, Beerlings! Take me to your lager... After a trip to the PO Box, The HBD Community Red Cross Fund stands at $625. Excellent! We may make it to $1000 yet! Once again, if you wish to donate to the Red Cross and would like to have your donation go twice as far, please donate through the Match Fund. If received in time for me to postmark the entire fund by 10/15 (I will probably mail the check 10/13 to ensure it receives the prescribed postmark) these funds will receive a match. If received after, I will try to identify other oppportunities to have the funds matched (there are still several public matches in my area), but will forward them to the Red Cross regardless. - -- - God bless America! Pat Babcock in SE Michigan pbabcock at hbd.org Home Brew Digest Janitor janitor@hbd.org HBD Web Site http://hbd.org The Home Brew Page http://hbd.org/pbabcock "The monster's back, isn't it?" - Kim Babcock after I emerged from my yeast lab Saturday ============ Reprinted from HBD #3710 ============== Date: Wed, 15 Aug 2001 10:30:49 -0400 (EDT) From: Pat Babcock <pbabcock at hbd.org> Subject: HBD Tee-Shirt Contest! Greetings, Beerlings! Take me to your lager... No, no - this is NOT an opportunity to douse tee-shirt clad beauties with water. As you (may or may not) know, the HBD has been getting our merchandising act s-l-o-w-l-y together. So far, we've managed to get button production under way in support of the many conventions, competitions and conferences we HBDers go to, and at which we pass each other like so many ships in the night, having no way to recognize each other... Our next sally into the battle of marketing is tee shirts! One problem: what goes on it?! That brings us to the HBD Tee-Shirt Contest! Here's an opportunity to stew your creative juices, let them congeal in technicolor, and spew 'em onto the chest (or back) of HBD members everywhere! We're looking to have designs for the HBD Tee-Shirt created by those who know the HBD best: you. So create your artwork, render it to gif or jpeg format, and send it to teeshirt at hbd.org. We'll publish the pic onto the HBD website, and provide voting buttons so that site visitors can vote for the 2002 HBD Tee-Shirt design. The design netting the highest votes by contest deadline goes to production, with attribution to the winner! The winner will also receive a free shirt bearing their design, plus a HBD button containing their name and Chief Clothier as the second line. Their photo and design will also appear on the HBD website. Legal mumbo-jumbo: All designs, whether winning or not, become the sole property of HBD.ORG to use or disposition as they see fit. Contest is open to anyone wishing to submit a design. HBD.ORG reserves the right to not publicly display any design deemed obscene, in poor taste, or counter to the HBD.ORG philosophy without notification to the submitter. Designs must not contain copyrighted or trademarked images, unless copyright or trademarked by HBD.ORG. Winning design may be rendered or modified suitably for silk screening and/or for display on the HBD.ORG website. Contest begins with publication of this notice. Contest is expected to complete 10/15/01. See http://hbd.org for details as they are developed. All proceeds generated through HBD merchandise are used to recoup the cost of said merchandise and the cost of maintaining the HBD.ORG presence on the internet. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 4 Oct 2001 08:44:28 +0200 From: "Braam Greyling" <braam.greyling at azoteq.com> Subject: Re: Freezing Wort Dave wrote: >>> I was wondering if you can freeze wort. I am gonna prepare some quart jars of unfermented wort so that I can use them for propagating yeast. <<< Dave, I dont freeze the wort, I put some boiling wort in a cleaned airtight jar (like an old mayonaisse jar) and let it cool down. When it cools down the wort is sterile inside the jar and it is sealed. I then keep it in the fridge. I think a lot of guys do this. Regards Braam Greyling Snr. Design Engineer Azoteq(Pty)Ltd Tel +27 21 8630033 Fax +27 21 8631512 Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 4 Oct 2001 09:52:35 +0200 From: "Gerard Goossens" <Gerard-g at hotpop.com> Subject: First brew. program request Hello fellow brewers. I have made my first brew and will bottle it this evening. I am looking for a easy program for making beer labels. Where can i download or buy such programs. For my next brew i have downloaded catsmeow to make a selection. After downloading my head began to spin because of the many recipies. Can someone point me to a recipy that is not to hard to make for a beginning home brewer. Best regards, Gerard Goossens Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 4 Oct 2001 06:59:25 -0400 From: "Mark Tumarkin" <mark_t at ix.netcom.com> Subject: Food Grade Washer Alternative Bill Dubas wrote: "I'm thinking that I need to switch to a flat washer to get a good seal. However, I'm having trouble locating rubber flat washers in the size I need that are specified as food-grade. Usually it's not even specified whether they are or not. How important is it for these rubber washers to be food-grade? I imagine that a non-food-grade washer would introduce unwanted flavors and odors, or maybe worse. Are there any other options that I may be overlooking?" Wayne Smith, one of the members of my brew club, was reworking his system recently and was dealing with a similar problem. He found a silicon sealant at the auto parts store. He contacted the manufacturer and talked to one of their engineers. He was told that even though it is not listed as food grade, the Permatex RTV high temperature silcone that is available in automobile parts stores is inert and completely food grade once it is cured (24 hours). It is the exact same thing as the sealant that complies with all regulations set for food grade silicone only they don't list it on the packaging. So you might consider this as a cheap and easily available option for your brew equipment. Mark Tumarkin Gainesville, FL Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 04 Oct 2001 06:54:47 -0500 From: "Micah Millspaw" <MMillspa at silganmfg.com> Subject: Freezing wort >Date: Tue, 2 Oct 2001 22:32:00 -0700 >From: "D Perry" <daperry75 at home.com> >Subject: Freezing Wort > >I was wondering if you can freeze wort. I am gonna prepare some quart jars >of unfermented wort so that I can use them for propagating yeast. I typically collect a gallon of wort out of each brew and reserve that to the freezer for later use in krausen. This works well in making up for fermentation and racking losses, so that I get a full volume batch (every drop counts ! ) I use polypropylene (sp) cubitainer, like some BP's use for to go beer. I have also used plastic milk jugs. All with no problems. The wort goes in to the jug boiling and is rapidly frozen. I later thaw and reboil the wort as needed, 15 min. or so. Micah Millspaw -brewer at large Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 4 Oct 2001 07:59:41 -0500 (EST) From: Alexandre Enkerli <aenkerli at indiana.edu> Subject: Homebrew Pictures? Hello all! Following up on Jim Clement's post, I was wondering if anyone had a good source for pictures and/or videos of homebrewing. Things that would help include images of highly flocculating yeast in a carboy, yeast washing, yeast starter, mash thickness, runoff flow-rate, full equipment setup, beer clarity, bacterial infection, etc. Thanks! Alex Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 04 Oct 2001 09:19:27 -0400 From: "Donald D. Lake" <dlake at gdi.net> Subject: Sweet potatos? Rather than repeat my pumpkin ale trials & tribulations, I saw where someone brewed a beer using sweet potatos. Does anyone have any experience with brewing with sweet potatos that they would share? I also wonder if beer made with sweet potato takes as long to mature and smooth out as the pumpkin ale does? I worked with a woman many years ago that made sweet potato pie for the holidays. To me it tasted just like pumpkin pie, but that was probably due to the spices. Here's the story that peaked my interest: http://www.xpresssites.com/lee/bismarck/xpspecialsections/ diningandentertainment/story_11130.asp Don Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 04 Oct 2001 10:11:41 -0400 From: grayling at provide.net Subject: Cider - One More Data Point Last year I attended a cider pressing at a small apple orchard hosted by the Prison City Brewers (Jackson, MI). If my memory is correct, we pressed seven different varieties that night each in a single variety pressing. All of the pressings came in with a gravity of 1.045. Some of the varieties were common (Red and Golden Delicious), and some were "antique" (Wolf River). My resulting blend was a mix of Red and Yellow Delicious, Wolf River, and Johnathan and Northern Spy (to the best of my memory). Hope this helps... Cheers! Jim Suchy Ann Arbor Brewer's Guild Westland, MI Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 04 Oct 2001 09:35:13 -0500 From: Bill Frazier <billfrazier at worldnet.att.net> Subject: Stephen's off-flavors Stephen mentions off-flavors in beer racked to a secondary, "I've made two batches which ended up with off flavors. So I've gone back to single primary fermentation and kegging after one week. I leave the burped keg at room temp for conditioning for a further week, then gas it up in the fridge." Stephen, I guess you are brewing ales. I think you, and a lot of other new brewers, are too quick to rack off the primary yeast. There is no set time to do this~depends on yeast type, yeast amount, grain bill, fermentation temperature, etc., etc., etc. I suggest you leave the new beer on the primary yeast until you have determined that the specific gravity is no longer falling. Yeast does wonderful things to beer if allowed to remain in contact until the process is complete. "The reason I shy away from the secondary fermenter is I'm told that when the primary fermentation is more or less finished, the beer is very susceptible to oxidisation and infection. Putting it straight into a sanitized keg and burping seems to be the safe way out." True, but there is no difference in racking to a secondary or a keg. The racking process is the same. Just be sure all equipment is sanitized. Don't splash the beer when racking. Fill your secondary fermenter up to the top to minimize air contact. Keep the beer cool. Don't be in a hurry to rack off the secondary. Let the beer rest until it begins to clear. This might take two to three weeks. Then rack to your keg and add CO2. New beer can have off flavors. These may be the byproducts of fermentation and given time they will fade. Good luck! Bill Frazier Olathe, Kansas, USA Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 04 Oct 2001 10:11:59 -0400 (EDT) From: leavitdg at plattsburgh.edu Subject: first runnings....and final amount of wort...question I think a lot about my "first runnings", that is, the first bit of sweet wort that emminates forth out of the lauter-tun after recirculating and when beginning my sparge...(incidentally, a VERY happy time for me).. My usual grain bill is about 8-10 lb of grain, and my first runnings are anywhere from 1.06 to 1.08 typically...sometimes a bit higherwith either more grain , or a better conversion,..sometimes a bit lower due to less grain, or less complete conversion... Anyway, yesterday I decided to experiment with a whole lot more grain, ...23 lbs!..., and found that my first runnings were 1.12. Well, now, here is the question: that is high (I brewed a Wee Heavy), but I had actually thought that it would be higher...yet...as I had collected the usual amount (6-7 gallons) I noticed that the gravity was still over 1.04! so I kept collecting...almost 9 gallons of wort...then had to have a real long (3 hour) boil so as to get it all in a 6 gallon carboy. The question is: when you use more grain...is it a fact that the first runnings may not go as high... but that you get MUCH more staying power in your run-off..ir you get much more than when using less grain? It is perhaps self evident...but I had thought that I'd get real concen- trated wort, but that it would run our by 6-7 gallons...and it held out strong well beyond that... Yeast was Wyeast Scottish (3rd use) along with WhiteLabs English Dry (2nd use)... ...Darrell Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 04 Oct 2001 10:46:16 -0400 From: "Tom Williams" <williams2353 at hotmail.com> Subject: Priming with corn sugar Chris Hatton is having trouble priming with corn sugar and DME. Chris, I had a similar experience in my earlier batches, and settled on DME for priming. The bottle sediment doesn't bother me, and I am not convinced it is any higher with DME than with corn sugar for a particular yeast and wort recipe. I would recommend you search the HBD archives for an article (maybe 2) called "More Sugar" by Dave Draper, perhaps in 1995. I found it very helpful in getting the carbonation level right. You can use his method regardless which priming sugar you use. Tom Williams Dunwoody, Georgia Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 4 Oct 2001 08:25:16 -0700 (PDT) From: Roy Roberts <psilosome at yahoo.com> Subject: Freezing Wort > I was wondering if you can freeze wort. I am gonna prepare some quart > jars of unfermented wort so that I can use them for propagating yeast. Sure, I do it all the time and it works great. I usually don't bother making extra wort - after racking from my kettle after the boil, I pour the rest of the liquid (plus unavoidably some break material) through a coffee filter to clean it up. If you do this be sure and re-boil the wort before pitching your yeast. Roy NYC Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 4 Oct 2001 11:32:10 -0400 From: Jim Clement <jclement at silverbacktech.com> Subject: Re: Nothing Imortant Oh yeah. The website with the pix: http://jclement.home.att.net/pumpkin.html . Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 4 Oct 2001 08:39:17 -0700 From: "Bissell, Todd S" <tbissell at spawar.navy.mil> Subject: Old Ale Recipe Hi all, I have a bunch of older ingredients that I want to use up, so have been playing around with ProMash, and came up with the following. And comments and critiques (esp. in regards to the hops) would be greatly appreciated...! =========================== ProMash Recipe Printout Recipe : Butt-Ugly Olde Ale Recipe Specifics - ---------------- Batch Size (GAL): 5.00 Wort Size (GAL): 5.00 Total Extract (LBS): 10.00 Anticipated OG: 1.078 Plato: 18.86 Anticipated SRM: 62.7 Anticipated IBU: 71.4 Wort Boil Time: 60 Minutes Grain/Extract/Sugar % Amount Name Origin Extract SRM - ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- - 70.0 7.00 lbs. Traditional Dark Extract America 1.064 35 10.0 1.00 lbs. Crystal 120L America 1.005 120 10.0 1.00 lbs. Chocolate Malt America 1.004 350 10.0 1.00 lbs. Black Roasted Barley America 1.004 450 Extract represented as SG. Hops Amount Name Form Alpha IBU Boil Time - ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- - 1.00 oz. Eroica Pellet 9.00 38.9 60 min. 1.00 oz. Fuggle Pellet 3.90 8.6 30 min. 1.00 oz. Galena Pellet 12.00 13.8 15 min. 1.00 oz. East Kent Goldings Pellet 6.70 5.8 10 min. 1.00 oz. Whitbred Goldings (UK-WGV) Pellet 6.00 4.3 5 min. Extras Amount Name Type Time - -------------------------------------------------------------------------- 2.00 Tsp Irish Moss Fining 20 Min.(boil) Yeast - ----- White Labs WLP002 English Ale =================================== I also have some Black Treacle around. What would be the pros and cons of adding some to this already heavy (and heavy-handed!) British-style Old Ale...? Thanks! Cheers! Todd Bissell Imperial Beach, CA Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 4 Oct 2001 11:52:02 -0400 From: Jeff Renner <JeffRenner at mediaone.net> Subject: Re: water question Himsbrew at aol.com of Green Bay asks: >is just a bad memory from high school! >I have a private well at home(Green Bay Wi) >so I haven't had the $ to get it tested. >my water goes thru a home water softner, >then is filtered thru a sink filter >(culligan type )with two filter cartriges. >Now my question, is this ok to brew with? >I am about to start all-grain brewing, >and I don't want to screw it up!! Don't use the softened water - it will be high in sodium. The straight water will probably be good, although it may be high in iron. Do you get iron stains with unsoftened water? Here are some generalizations: Your water softener company ought to be able to tall you at least how hard the water is. Then if it is hard (and I suppose it is or you wouldn't use a softener), does it leave a lime sediment when you boil it? If it does then it is temporary hardness, which means it has high alkalinity. This means that for pale beers, you should boil and decant first. For dark beers, it's good as is. If it doesn't leave a sediment upon boiling, then it is probably permanent hardness (low alkalinity). This is good for pale beers as is. I would think that the softener company ought to be able to give you more detailed analysis. You would like to know the calcium and alkalinity for starters. Just a bit north-west of Green Bay in Bonduel is a tiny microbrewery called Slab City Brewery. Their water may be similar, and perhaps the owner/brewer can give you some hints. Jeff - -- Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan USA, JeffRenner at mediaone.net "One never knows, do one?" Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943 Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 04 Oct 2001 11:08:54 -0500 From: "Joseph Marsh" <josephmarsh62 at hotmail.com> Subject: back to school Stephen Dunn asks about mid level brewing questions... When you rack from your primary directly to keg you are simply useing your keg as a secondary fermenter. Personally unless I'm trying for a very light flavored/colored beer I don't use a secondary at all. 3 weeks on the trub isn't going to give you any off flavors and should give you nicely cleared beer. When you tap the keg give it a little extra pressure and the bit of sediment around the pick up tube will be sucked out with the first glass. Then bleed off the extra pressure and tap normally. You'll have fine beer. My brewing bible is Al Korzonas' book "Hombrewing Vol I". It's a very readable text and gives you good overview of most subjects having to do with brewing. The worst thing I've heard anybody say about the book is that he didn't leave anything for VOl. II. (Not really true because Vol I is based on extracts and barely touches on grains.) But if you want info on water, hops, equipment, technique etc. it's hard to go wrong with Al's advice. BTW he has a wed page under his name take a look. Good brewing, Joe Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 04 Oct 2001 09:05:58 -0700 From: John Palmer <jjpalmer at gte.net> Subject: Re: Himsbrew's Water Question Himsbrew asks about whether his treated well water would be good for all-grain brewing. Here is an all-grain brewing rule of thumb: In general, Treated water (via a salt-based water softener) is not recommended for all grain brewing due to the lack of calcium and high levels of sodium. In this case, since the well is in Green Bay WI, and pulls from the Lake Michigan aquifer, I would use the well water straight. It would be good to get the water tested though so that you know exactly what mineral levels you are typically brewing with. John Palmer Monrovia, CA homepage http://www.realbeer.com/jjpalmer How To Brew - the online book http://www.howtobrew.com/sitemap.html Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 4 Oct 2001 12:49:08 -0400 From: "Frank Tutzauer" <comfrank at acsu.buffalo.edu> Subject: intermediate advice; racking Stephen from Sydney has come back to the fold: >The point of my writing is - as a novice to the industry, I've struggled to >find intermediate advice on the brewing process. You either find "Making >your first brew" or it's straight into "full grain brewing". So I'm hoping >to see more information posted on general procedures. Many seasoned brewers >will probably find these sorts of requests painfully basic, but everyone has >to start at the beginning. You'll gets lots of help here. Even though this forum is loaded with very seasoned and sophisticated brewers, they're always willing to help a novice or intermediate brewer. >One area I find awkward is racking into a secondary container. ... The >reason I shy away from the secondary fermenter is I'm told that when the >primary fermentation is more or less finished, the beer is very susceptible >to oxidisation and infection. Actually, the beer is *less* susceptible to infection (because the pH has dropped, and the alcohol content has risen). That doesn't mean you are free from all risk of infection, but you are at less risk than before fermentation. Still, sanitize everything that touches your beer. You are right, though, that finished beer is more susceptible to adverse affects from oxidation. The way you are doing it is fine (primary, then straight to keg), but if you want to rack for some reason (clarification, freeing up your primary fermenter, high gravity brew, whatever), that's fine too, as long as you rack quietly and keep everything sanitary. --frank in Buffalo (Jeff R., you finally got me to put my location!) Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 4 Oct 2001 10:56:48 -0700 From: "D Perry" <daperry75 at home.com> Subject: Kegging When you keg, does the keg have to be completely full? The reason I ask is I would like to bottle some for competitions and that would leave some space in the keg. Either that or are counter-pressure filled bottles legal in competitions? Dave Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 04 Oct 2001 18:17:46 From: "John Biggins" <bignz721 at hotmail.com> Subject: Orval culture -- what is this yeasty beastie? I'm culturing up some dregs of an Orval clone a friend gave me, and on one of my culture plates I got a few distinct dark green colonies. Under the microscope, these seem to be regular yeast (appropriate size & budding). Since I'm not too familiar w/ the classification, does this dark green yeast fit into any useful strains? My email: jbbiggins at pharmacy.wisc.edu - --------------- John B. Biggins Cornell University Weill Graduate School of Medical Sciences Student -- Dept. of Pharmacology Laboratory for Biosynthetic Chemistry School of Pharmacy; Pharmaceutical Sciences Division University of Wisconsin-Madison Lab: (608)232-3869 http://www.ski.edu/thorson http://www.pharmacy.wisc.edu "Science like Nature, must also be tamed With a view towards its preservation. Given the same state of integrity It will surly serve us well." -- Neil Peart; Natural Science (III) -- Permanent Waves Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 4 Oct 2001 16:01:56 -0400 From: "Stephen Alexander" <steve-alexander at att.net> Subject: 4WD/ undermodified malts./Budvar Joel Plutchak unthinkingly blurts ... > Dunno where you live, Steve, but in places that have >a recognizable winter a 4x4 is often quite useful on city >streets. I've driven over 550k miles on business in the past 15 years. Nearly all between Buffalo, thru to Detroit. My home turf averages 50 inches of snow compared to your Urbana 30. The two times I've wanted 4WD were at the end of my driveway. 4WD is great in it's element, but in the city it's value is emotional. Similar to the way inexperienced brewers choose decoction for well-modified malts. - --- back to beer please --- >I read that article years ago and wasn't convinced by >the data back then, either. Where were the statistically >significant data points? No one has claimed statistically significant data Joel, but unlike you, Louis Bonham and I and others have fairly tried the comparison and know a little about what we're saying. Where are your statistically significant data that decoction of overmodified malts causes the great malty flavors you describe ? It doesn't - that's a myth. I've performed several same recipe, same temps, step vs decoction mashes using Durst and DWC malts and I don't see *major* advantage when using modern malts. Decoction certainly does NOT make a night and day difference in the resulting beer. Yeast selection and kreusening make bigger difference IMO. >I'd be interested to hear what judicious malts can be used >to get that great, deep, decocted malt flavor I've tasted in >beer from breweries like Victory [...] First, Victory's malt isn't overmodified so my comments about decocting overmodified malts don't apply to your example. Second, the great malty Victory flavor you attribute to decoctions also comes through in Victory HopDevil (undecocted) with it's huge malty flavor rivaling the IBUs. Jim Busch, a founder of Victory and developer of some of their beers says in HBD#2862 that they could not achieve the flavor profiles desired even using decoction and other methods. He attributes flavor advantage to directly imported Weyermann malts (Weyermann does custom maltings). In #3189 Jim spills the beans about malt modification when he writes ..., "15P Maerzen biers, [...].all are beers that benefit from decoction mashing of imported malts with lower than typical modification". >If I could do that >with my standard infusion mash I'd jump on it. Recipes, I >want recipes! Name names! Be specific! Why not make a one of those super malty beers that you think comes from decocting overmodified malts and then try the exact same with a step mash and then blind taste (or better yet triangle test) the results as Louis and I have. If you can taste any difference above the normal HBing variables you'll recognize that a little extra melanoidin or munich will mask it Making a pils with a durst or weissheimer with a Kolbach over 40 by decoction is nearly a waste of time. It impacts color more than flavor. I've had variable results with flavor diffs using high percentages of Continental munich malt - but this could easily reflect the differences in modification of that malt or other factors. The magnitude of the diffs were not extreme. >and from homebrewers who >don't toe the Lewis line on decoction. Funny that rags like Brauwelt and hacks like Kunze toe this line too ! Kunze for example writes that infusion mashes deficiencies "can to a large extent be compensated for by the use of special malts and more colored malts [munich malt - sja]". Kunze earlier refers to husk extract, melanoidin formation and DMS reduction as the primary flavor diffs. Notes about the flavor differences being 'insignificant' appear in a Brauwelt '86 article. Feel free to brew as you please Joel, but until you perform some honest decoction tests with controls and blind tastings (and a few 100k mi more in some real snow) you're lacking the experience to know. ==== Dave Harsh writes ... >You don't need to decoct in order to get good conversion from the malt, >but the other flavor characteristics from decocting are very difficult >to get without the decoction process. ... >but if you are brewing a Salvator or Celebrator - sorry - you >need to decoct. Dave - I find your comments confused and confusing. I said nothing of conversion ('conversion' isn't 'modification'!). I did say that decocting overmodified malts was nearly useless. Unless you claim that Celebrator and Salvator are made by decocting overmodified malts I don't see your point. >And lets be honest, if energy and money were our primary concerns, we'd >be buying commercial beers instead of brewing ourselves. I agree - but let's begin with some honesty a step earlier and admit that energy and money were never at issue. I've regularly been an advocate of brewing only the best beer you can despite such costs, but I won't spend extra money or time based on hearsay only to get essentially similar results - that is just brewing by superstition. I'd like to hear about your experiments that show that there really is a significant flavor difference, but I'm still awaiting your theoretical arguments about why cornies are such awful fermenters as you promised me months ago. I've got some prelim results that same wort fermented in 1:1 carboys vs 2:1 cornies is not distinguishable in triangle tests ! ==== Budvar modification level - I mentioned that the Hartong rating, from Miller on the St.Pat website might be a typo, but I think the issue is that the number listed is the "Hartong VK 45C %" and not the adjusted Hartong. 35% means a thin warm (45C) mash produced 35% of extract as an EBC fine grind mash extract. That's low-normal. Durst pills is rated at 35-40% Hartong VK 45C for example. -S Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 4 Oct 2001 15:06:10 -0500 From: "Gary Smith" <mandolinist at interlync.com> Subject: Using a camp Chef indoors (Pet Rabbits & CO problems?) Greetings, Winter is coming on & I'm going to have to move the RIMS beast into the basement. There's no outlet for 220 down there, the only 220 is to the AC so I can't convert the rims to all electric & I'm going to have to use propane & my Camp Chef which does burn very cleanly with no sooting on the boil kettle. I can still use the 110 for the rims of course but my concern is carbon monoxide levels if I do this. My girlfriend has some pet rabbits at the other end of the basement. I'm wondering if they're going to have any problems from CO. People use gas stoves & ranges all winter with no problems but furnaces & water heaters are vented. Of course no one could guarantee there won't be a problem with using the camp chef indoors but I was wondering if anyone has done this in the winter when the windows are closed & with pets in the basement? I do have a CO detector on the first level which I can bring downstairs when I brew but it would be good to know if people have used camp chef's in the basement without any problems. The garage is out of the question as there's no water there & it's detached from the house. Chicago weather is pretty nasty in January and doing it in this garage is asking for problems. Thanks, Gary mandolinist at YourPanties.interlync.com Important: You must remove "YourPanties". to reply Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 4 Oct 2001 16:22:25 -0500 (CDT) From: Joel Plutchak <plutchak at ncsa.uiuc.edu> Subject: Re: 4WD/ undermodified malts./Budvar Steve Alexander blurted: >4WD is great in it's element... > My home turf averages 50 inches of snow compared to your Urbana 30. Just to clarify for the masses, I neither live in Urbana, own a 4WD vehicle, nor feel that if I did spend 100% of my time in Urbana I'd need a 4WD vehicle. That those assumptions were made are illustrative of my whole issue with the analogy to decoction. E.g., terrain, temperature, city budget and road maintenance, precipitation other than snow, etc., are factors that were obviously not taken into account. To put it another way, the model and data points were not sufficient to support the conclusion. I would no more state "4WD is useless in any city" than I would "4WD is necessary in all cities." >No one has claimed statistically significant data Joel, but unlike you, >Louis Bonham and I and others have fairly tried the comparison and know a >little about what we're saying. And you've assumed (again) I haven't tried a range of malts and techniques exactly why? Because I didn't publish "data" in a defunct magazine? >In #3189 Jim spills the beans about malt modification when he writes ..., >"15P Maerzen biers, [...].all are beers that benefit from decoction >mashing of imported malts with lower than typical modification". Yup, Victory decocts. And they do it when *they* know it makes a difference, not when you or Lewis says so. I may have missed the part in your original assertion where you specified overmodified malt, decocting ales like HopDevil, etc., so perhaps am guilty of bringing the wider perspective (i.e., "decoction is a waste of time and effort") into the discussion inappropriately. So it goes. Bottom line: if Victory decocts some of their lagers it's good enough for me. I said: >If I could do that with my standard infusion mash I'd jump on it. >Recipes, I want recipes! Name names! Be specific! ...and I'm still waiting. Instead of viewing every question or opinion as a personal attack why not take a more constructive approach? I'll make it easy by being very specific: what blend of grain and infusion mashing will give me a deeply malty doppelbock? (And would it be indistinguishable from the same blend of grains subjected to a decoction mash schedule?) Ditto for a Maibock. I'm about to buy a bunch of malt and have the opportunity to get some Weyermann, so this is a very pertinent (and time- critical) issue for me. Joel Plutchak Relaxed and not worrying in an East-central Illinois town that isn't Urbana Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 4 Oct 2001 16:12:25 -0700 From: thager at hcsd.k12.ca.us Subject: ...water loss during boil Brian, you write: "First, A few weeks ago I was touring a small brewery in the area and was discussing with the brewmaster water loss during the boil. I've never understood how it is that commercial breweries can keep their water losses relatively low compared to homebrewers. On my way home I was thinking that maybe the tube that leads up to the ceiling and out of the roof of the building may have something to do with this. Perhaps, as the steam rises up the tube, some of it cools on its way up and condenses on the sides of the tube and falls back into the wort." This issue has been a big wondering in my mind for years. Especially when you read G.Fix Brewing Techniques where he says that "thermal loading" - which he equates to boiling too hard (or too long) - causes off flavors. And there is even one sentence that says that he found off flavors that are commonly thought to be produced by other issues were indeed caused by this "thermal loading"... Take it for what it is worth... many people on the HBD have discounted his assertions, but I have never seen any hard data on this issue either way. Fix states that a good indicator of thermal loading is evaporation rate. 10% is ideal - enough to evaporate the bad stuff but not too much to cause excessive "thermal loading" in his mind. He claims the high end of evaporation rate is 15% - you should never go higher than this. Evaporation as an indicator of "thermal loading" is flawed in my mind and seems meaningless unless you are looking at one system over time. To compare the evaporation on two different systems and come to conclusions about the thermal loading present would be highly questionable. For example, one open kettle with a very low boil and low volume would surely have a much greater evaporation rate than a very large covered kettle with a very strong boil and a high volume of wort. I was concerned when I read his assertions on thermal loading. In my conv. keg kettle and propane burner I can boil off about a gallon every half hour if I turn it up full blast. So if I start off with 9 gallons, boil for 1.5 hours and evaporate 3 gallons, that a 33% evaporation rate!!! 3x the ideal as Fix says and over double of what he says is the extreme. Do I make decent beer this way? Yes. Could it be better? Of course. Are these super high evaporation rates to blame. Who knows? It is interesting because every reference other than Fix says to boil the hell out of your wort and mentions nothing about "thermal loading". In all the brewing books, a strong boil is recommended. Noonan even says that a "violent" boil is highly beneficial. And there are many reasons to do so (you can read the details in the literature). The short of it is that strong boiling does two main things: 1. blow off the volatile components you don't want in your beer and 2. bind the proteins and tannin materials into large "hot break" particles that you also don't want in your beer. This are mandatory if you want to make good beer. Fix is the ONLY one that I have read that has mentioned anything about the detrimental effects of "thermal loading" (although he states no real evidence as the basis for his claim as I remember). So the bottom line is that a good rolling boil producing a good hot break is highly beneficial but... over-boiling *might* be detrimental to your final product. As you pointed out, I have also been interested in the difference between the hbers evaporation rate and the professionals. I did brew at my local brewpub over the summer and was interested to see how their kettle boiled and was designed. The kettle was a ss chamber totally enclosed except for the manhole and the exhaust outlet. It was steam heated. The brewer said that he has a hard time boiling hard enough and his evaporation rates were pretty low, if I recall about 5-7%. The manhole was left open during the boil. For the exhaust tube, most of kettles in breweries that I have seen are designed in a similar manner- they have an elbow right out of the kettle and a condensation chamber at the bottom of a duct going up through the roof to vent... see diagram below: fan to pull exhaust | | | | | |_________ | _______ | \ / ___| |___________________ \ / | | | | | kettle | | | | | | | to collection bucket The evaporation travels up the ducting (horizontal tube is angled down) and as it condenses on the duct it drains into the funnel and down the tube to a bucket. He said depending on the atmospheric pressure for the day, he ether runs the exhaust fan or doesn't, From what I remember when the atm pressure is high he doesn't run the fan because with the fan on you get a lower boil and with high atm pressure you also get a low boil. When the atm pressure is low he can run the fan and still get a good boil. His boil was not violent in any way like some books say - it was more of a low-med roll. As far as I could tell by sticking my head in there and trying to see the hot break (we didn't pull any out and take a look) it seemed like there were fairly big chunks of hot break in the wort. His beers are decent, nothing to brag about though so I am not relaying his technique as something to shoot for but just as a data point of what goes on in a fairly typical professional brewery. It is obvious that they have a much more difficult time getting a violent boil than we do with our small volumes and big burners. One thought that I did have from this experience is that ALL brewery kettles (that I have seen) are mostly closed and vented through a relatively small exhaust duct - i.e. all breweries do a mostly covered boil. This is one reason why their evaporation rates are lower than most hbers - most hbers do a completely open boil. Another big factor is the volume of the wort related to the heating power. Remember, the people who put these breweries together are usually business people and sometimes have no brewing experience... they are worried about $$$ and not much else. Therefore they are going to try to get away with using the LEAST amount of energy possible to do an adequate job. That was the case in the brewpub where I brewed, the brewer was constantly shaking his head and complaining about the setup being designed by engineers and businessmen and certain parts (like the steam heated kettle) were very inadequate in practice. Another thought is that most brewery kettles are enclosed vessels where a large portion of the exhaust is condensed on the inside and runs back into the wort. I wonder if some of what is in this condensation are beneficial flavors/components that hbers are loosing when we evaporate so much. In my setup with the converted keg, I really can't cover it and get the condensation to run back in the wort but did come up with an idea that I will try on my next brew. I picked up a old wok top at the thrift store for a buck and am going to cut a hole in them middle of it - I might make it about 1-2" in diameter. If I turn it upside down it will fit nicely as a vented cover. I will then adjust my burner so that I do get a strong rolling boil, but much of the evaporation will condense and run back into the wort and will closely simulate what is happening in the big brewery kettles. The trick will be to get a strong enough boil to get a good hot break but with the cover keep my evaporation rates down to the 10-15% range. I don't know if this will make a bit of difference and some might say that all this is fretting over minutia, but many of us have stuck with this hobby just because there is so much minutia to fret over! Hope this helps! Troy Return to table of contents
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