HOMEBREW Digest #392 Thu 05 April 1990

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		Rob Gardner, Digest Coordinator

  Cheap copies of Noonan's Book (Mark Stevens) <stevens at stsci.edu>
  Trip Report on Bluebonnet Conference and Competition (3 pages) (John Mellby)
  RE: Pellets compared to Leaf Hops (Barry Cunningham)
  Re: Yeast and cultivating 
  Hop-a-mania II!!! (Enders)
  Thanks! (Tim Dennison )
  Harmful Bacteria in Honey (willa)
  *BIG* Blow-off (David Lim)
  Hops and the gallbladder (Paul L. Kelly)
  re uses for spent grains (Chip Hitchcock)
  Honey Killers! (doug)
  Re:  uses for spent grains (Chris Shenton)
  boiling honey (mage!lou)
  Re: hydrogen sulphide odor (Russ Pencin)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Wed, 4 Apr 90 08:40:56 EDT From: (Mark Stevens) <stevens at stsci.edu> Subject: Cheap copies of Noonan's Book Thinking of buying Greg Noonan's "Brewing Lager Beer" for your library? I was just about to plunk down my $12.95 + $3 shipping to order it from AHA when I got a catalog from Storey Communications (publishers of Dave Miller's book). They have Noonan's book on sale for $9.95! I promptly ordered a copy. Flipping a few pages further, I see they also sell Reese's book "Better Beer & How To Brew It", Byron Burch's "Brewing Quality Beer", and a homebrewing video. For more info: Storey Communications Schoolhouse Road Pownal, VT 05261 They also have toll-free order line for customers with Visa or MasterCard. (800) 441-5700. Cheers, - --Mark Stevens Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 4 Apr 90 07:48:39 CDT From: jmellby at ngstl1.csc.ti.com (John Mellby) Subject: Trip Report on Bluebonnet Conference and Competition (3 pages) Notes from the Bluebonnet Homebrew Conference and Competition John R. Mellby April 4, 1990 Well, the Bluebonnet just finished for the year. This is the 3rd Annual competition, and this year we combined with the Homebrewer's Alliance to put on a full 3-day conference including Michael Jackson, Dave Miller, Fred Eckhardt, Paul Farnsworth, and many others. The following is a set of semi-disorganized comments on the conference. 1. This was the first time the Bluebonnet was more than a competition. Because of this, there was a lot of confusion over who was organizing things (or more likely, not organizing them). Anyone doing a conference for the first time needs to spend a lot of effort deciding who has responsibility for *everything*! Still, the participants all enjoyed themselves, so it went off pretty well. 2. Michael Jackson had a comparative beer tasting the first night. The tasting was *very* good. I knew all the beers, of course, but Michael Jackson was an extemely interesting speaker. When my friend, Roy Mengot, and I found no one was in charge of executing the beer tasting we jumped in and organized the beer, glasses, corkscrews, etc. And *I* got to hand glasses of beer to Michael Jackson himself. <I'll never wash this hand again!> "The Beer Hunter" Michael Jackson finished filming his TV show, and it started appearing in the UK about a week or two ago. It will appear in the USA on August 23rd (Thursday) on the Discovery channel. One episode (1st) is on Belgium, one on Pilsner Urquell (and Czecholovokia), don't know the others. He talked about traveling through Czech in a Minibus packed with his crew. His electrician was a "very militant lesbian". "She spent the trip trying to convert us to Lesbianism. She wasn't very successful. There were overwhelming technical difficulties." He said that the Pilsner Urquell yeast was a symbiosis of 5 strains of yeast. A proof of how good a speaker MJ is, the hotel couldn't find the Duvel or Sozoens he asked for, so we threw in a Chimay Grand at the last minute. Michael Jackson didn't even know about this beforehand but he didn't even pause - he just talked for 15 minutes about Chimay and trappist beers. <I, on the other hand, probably looked like a complete idiot to him for giving him a Chimay when he wanted Duvel!> It turns out that the Abbey beers are copies of the Trappist beers made outside monastarys. MJ said that he did some tastings in the UK to promote his TV show, and that time after time, people would say that the Chimay was the best beer at the tasting! (Note, Chimay Grand used to be the blue-label and its now the gold.) He liked Young's Special London Ale a lot. (Apparently his local is a Young's. He commented that when the publican retired the new chap was a horrible publican, and many of the regulars changed to the Watney's pub where the publican was very good. MJ said he couldn't go to Watney's even under those circumstances.) John Young (the owner) is married to a Belgian. MJ said he worried about what would happen when the owner (John Young again?) died, because he only kept brewing in London because he was crazy. His heirs could get an ASTOUNDING amount of $ for the brewery property, in the heart of London. "John Young's madness is what keeps that property going". (He quoted Bert Grant "You need crazy people to make beer") "His security system is a flock of geese". Michael lives just a mile from the Young's brewery. If you want to find him he is somewhere midway between a Young's and Watney's pub. "British brewers' genius is producing low gravity beers with great taste." 80% of beer in Britain is drunk in a pub. He asserted that Timmerman's is the best Framboise/lambic that can be found in the USA. <I've never had the chance to directly compare Lindeman's and Timmerman's but this surprised me.> Boon and Cantillon are the best to be found in Belgium. <I assume this is the Boon Mariage Parfait, and Cantillon Framboise Rose'de Garde, Cantillon Lambic Grand Cru mentioned in his books. I would give dearly to taste these myself.> MJ also discussed some breweries in Estonia, where he was just two weeks ago. I have no useful notes on that. 3. Mary Thompson - The New Prohibition Movement Mary and Don Thompson are the owners of the Reinheitsgebot Brewery here in Dallas (Plano). She spoke for an hour (OK, she ran over by 30 minutes) on the new anti-alcohol movements, especially MADD. I only got down part of her info. <For your information, here in Texas the TABC, alcohol and tobacco board, just turned down 15-20 MADD proposals including such things as forcing bar operators to count how many drinks a customer has consumed, evaluating how drunk a customer is, and other ideas which would effectively prohibit drink.> MADD seems to be not too subtly trying to outlaw drink completely. Misuse of statistics is one way. Apparently when the police record an accident, if anyone at the scene had any alcohol whatsoever the accident is listed as alcohol-related. So if I had a been 3 hours ago, and was rear-ended by a bad driver through no fault of my own, it would be listed as an alcohol-related accident. These and other distortions are used to make the drinking problems, and drunk driving problems appear to be much worse than they really are (IMHO). <I suspect part of this is the media wanting anything which is provocative -- "Drunk Driver kills Pope! Film at 11!"> The statistics recording and reporting distortions make it difficult to see what the real situtation is. <Anyone have any sources of good data?> Anheuser Busch has a very good packet of information on responsible drinking, and alcohol-education materials. She cited some Johns-Hopkins studies which sounded like drink is not nearly the problem you would assume, from seeing TV or other media. <"To keep your drunk spouse from breaking up your marriage, send him to our shock-treatment clinic!"> Another Johns-Hopkins study cited a "moderate" level of drinking for me to be 5 beers a day. <OK, I'm a bit overweight, but anyone who drinks more than this consistently must really be a problem drinker!> She listed three organizations who provide information/magazines on moderation in drink (maybe drugs as well?). I don't have the subscription prices. Citizens for Moderation ($1) Moderation Reader (address?) Moderation Journal 4714 NE 50th St., Seattle WA 88105 4. Michael Jackson - The Microbrewery Movement This was a discussion of micros (with slide show) mainly in Europe, but some US as well. Of the German breweries (around 1700?), 800 are in Bavaria, and 250 of those in NE Bavaria (Franconia). He commented on the German breweries having close ties to the church, which interested him, as Michael Jackson is an atheist. In showing a beautiful brewpub in Dortmund he said "Dortmunder brewers realized their sales were being adversely affected by lack of romance". Consumption of Bavarian wheat beer went from 1% to 10% in 10 years (in the late 70's). The Lord of Traquir House (Traquir House Ale), in the Scottish borders, near Pebbles, died on St. Valentine's Day. This was one of the earliest microbreweries, started in the 60's. His daughter plans to continue brewing. (When I first started coming to this country <USA>) "In states like Texas, if you didn't actually drink while driving you were regarded as a communist". 5. Other talks on which I have little or no notes Paul Farnsworth talked on yeast and brewing. Get his article a couple issues ago in Zymurgy! This is invaluable information on brewing. Best speaker after MJ! Dave Miller talked about profiles of pilsners and making up recipes, basing this on the components of Pilsner Urquell. Fred Eckhardt talked about beer styles. (His new book seems very good, although what with working on the convention, I have only skimmed it so far.) 6. The competition went very smoothly. We had 305 entries in 20 categories. 3 bottles of each (1st round, 2nd round, and best of show) means 900 bottles. Kudos to such hard workers as Paul Seaward, Mike Leonard, Brad Krohn, and whoever handled the beer stewards. Although I have been tasting and judging on my own for 3 years, this was the first regional competition I have been involved in. I was paired with Dave Miller (!) on Full-bodied Pale Ales. Unlike may homebrewers, Dave asserts that pale ales do not need to be strongly hopped. He tended to rate lightly hopped ales higher than I did and I rated the heavily hopped ales higher. It was interesting and educational to work with him. We rated 10 ales, and combined our 3 best with the other pair of judges to rate the final 3 best. Poor Fred Eckhardt had to judge about 15 Brown Ales, and another bunch in the immediately following 2nd round. I don't have a complete list of the winners yet, but there were winners from all over the country. At least one California winner, Andy (?) from Tennessee won two, St. Louis won a lot! The club competition was won by the North Texas Home Brewers Association (no help from me - I don't think my two entries even got to the second round). Amazingly the Best of Show was not the "Best Extract" or "Best All-Malt" it was a sack-mead! 7. Fred Eckhardt's Beer and Chocolate Tasting Sadly I remember little about this <no snickering, please>. I was so busy running around distributing beer and chocolate <"No, you can't have a full glass of Timmerman's Peche"> that I couldn't properly enjoy it. Still Fred did a great job, and everyone else enjoyed it. (Except maybe the 3 people who didn't get the Peche.) The Hilldale Terminator (5 gallons) served with chocolate chunk brownies was great while it lasted. 8. Aftermath. While my wife and the president of the Ft. Worth club sampled the entries in the mead category (remember this is mainly 1st round rejects), we cleaned up and tried various ales. The local clubs have the remaining, oh, say 450 bottles, to be used as support in our local meetings. OK, I took some of the strong ales, and meads home myself. Now we get to total up money and see if we're broke. Surviving the American Dream John R. Mellby Texas Instruments jmellby%ngstl1.ti.com P.O.Box 660246, MS 3645 Dallas Texas, 75266 (214)517-5370 (214)343-7585 ***************************************************************************** * "I am (not) recommending that you totally ignore your responsibilities as * * a homeowner and just sit around all day with a beer can in your hand. * * No indeed, I have long been a believer in purchasing bottled beer, and * * pouring it into a chilled glass." * * -- "Homes and Other Black Holes", Dave Barry * ***************************************************************************** Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 4 Apr 90 08:46:59 EDT From: abvax!calvin.icd.ab.com!bwc at cwjcc.INS.CWRU.Edu (Barry Cunningham) Subject: RE: Pellets compared to Leaf Hops In HB Digest #391 David Ingalls writes: > I brewed up a batch of pale ale a few weeks back. ... > 1 oz. Northern Brewer hops for first 30 minutes of boil > 1 oz. Cascade hops for second 30 minutes of boil > 1 oz. Cascade hops for final 30 minutes of boil ... > It's now been in the bottle for a week and I've tasted it. The resulting > beer is very bitter. It isn't so bitter that it's undrinkable but you > probably wouldn't want it to be any more bitter. Depending of course on the alpha acid contents of the hops you used, I would expect this beer to be quite bitter when it is young. The 1 1/2 hour boil will get more bitterness out of the hops. Cutting back the boil to one hour or just using a little bit less hops will reduce the bitterness. Your brewing technique, which you did not specify, may also significantly affect bitterness. In particular, forced cooling to get a good cold break and racking the wort off the trub (particularly if you have a lot of goop from pelletized hops) before fermentation gets going should reduce the bitterness from the trub considerably. However, you should pay careful attention to the temperature when doing this to avoid infections (see Dave Miller's book The Complete Book of Homebrewing). The good news is that it should mellow considerably with age. I think you will find it much improved after 3 months in the bottle, if you can hold out that long. At least try to set a six pack aside. -- Barry Cunningham Return to table of contents
Date: 4 Apr 90 08:27:23 EST (Wed) From: dialogic!durk at uunet.UU.NET Subject: Re: Yeast and cultivating In digest #391, Charlie Woloszynski wrote: > The AHA published an excellent special Zymurgy on Yeast (Special '89). >I believe they are still selling it as a special order. I heartily >recommend getting it (and Zymurgy in general). Sorry, I don't have >the AHA's address at work. If no else supplies it, I'll bring it >later in the week. I just happened to have the phone number for AHA (Boulder, Col.) handy. Here it is: (303) 447-0816 Cheers, Durk durk at dialogic.com uunet!dialogic!durk Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 4 Apr 90 10:08:54 -0500 From: Enders <enders at plains.NoDak.edu> Subject: Hop-a-mania II!!! Re: hop utilization; According to at least one authority (Miller, TCHOHB), hop pellets are better utilized than whole hops (probably has to do with surface area). But just how much better the utilization is, is a bit difficult to pin down, since many factors effect the utilization (such as pH, boiling time, wort gravity, etc.). I would be inclined to cut my hop additions back by about 10-15% when switching from whole hops to pellets. When examining a recipe, it's always best to take the recomended hopping rate with a grain of salt (now if you're *sure* you want 3.5 oz of bullion's in there...:-) as the notion of how much is enough varies from individual to individual. Let _your_ taste be your guide!!! Re: hopping rates, recipies, and bitter batches; Recipies that only specify hop additions in oz/batch are a bit difficult to duplicate consistantly, since hops are an agricultural product, and are therefore not consistant from year to year (good hops are like good wine). For instance, a batch of Oregon grown Fuggles might have an alpha acid content of 3.5%, whereas, an otherwise identical batch of Fuggles (grown in the same year even!) grown in England might have an alpha acid content of 6.5%. Now, if you were to use the hopping rate of a recipe that had been developed with the 3.5% alpha acid hops, and instead plunked an identical quantity of the 6.5% alpha acid hops into your boiler, you now have a wort with aprox. twice the bitterness level. The more easily repeated recipes usually specify the hopping rate in alpha acid units (AAU's), or at least specify the alpha acid content of the hops used. You will have to scale accordingly if the difference is more than say 0.5% alpha acid. Also see above if the recipe doesn't specify the form of hops used. Hope this helps anyone with questions on hopping rates and hop utiliz- ation. Todd Enders ARPA: enders at plains.nodak.edu Computer Center UUCP: ...!uunet!plains!enders Minot State University Bitnet: enders at plains Minot, ND 58701 Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 4 Apr 90 11:27:03 EST From: timd at sct60a.sunyct.edu (Tim Dennison ) Subject: Thanks! I would like to send a quick thank you to everyone who responded to my request for information on how to enter the homebrewing arena. ALL of the responses were extremely helpful. I looked for a local homebrew shop, but alas the one we did have closed about 6 months ago.:( Oh well that only means a one hour road trip to Syracuse. If anyone can suggest a shop in that area, I would be interested. (assuming there is more than one). Again thank you for your responses. It is exciting to see that people are willing to take the time to help out a newcomer. Tim Dennison SUNY Institute of Technology tim at sct60a.sunyct.edu Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 04 Apr 90 09:25:36 PDT From: willa at hpvclwa.hp.com Subject: Harmful Bacteria in Honey Full-Name: ----- Will Allen ----- florianb at tekred.cna.tek.com writes: >It is my understanding that honey can contain a bacteria which has been known >to be fatal to children under the age of two years. I think the bacteria is botulinum. As I understand it (remember, I'm a programmer, not a biologist), in small children, botulinum is pathogenic. The other nasty thing this beasty does is secrete botulin, which is toxic to folks of all ages. This is the good ole botulism which one can get from poorly canned food. According to my pediatrician, it's ok to give honey to children over 1 year of age (but check with YOUR doctor, don't take my word). . . .Will Will Allen HP Vancouver Division willa at hpvcfs1.hp.com or ...!hplabs!hpvcfs1!willa or Will Allen/HP5400/PE Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 4 Apr 90 11:12:50 MDT From: David Lim <limd at boulder.Colorado.EDU> Subject: *BIG* Blow-off My most recent batch of beer is now in its second day of fermentation. I wasn't around last night to watch this happen, but almost a *GALLON* of beer was expelled through the blow-off tube atop my 5-gallon carboy. The initial fermentation (up to high-krausen) was extremely vigorous. I'm not bummed out about losing that much brew, but now there's a large air (right now it's only C02) space in the top of my carboy. Is this a problem? Has anyone experimented with carefully topping off the fermenter with some boiled wort or water (boiled so that oxygen and nasties are driven off?) How about topping it off when I rack it to a 2nd carboy? I've thought about dropping a bunch of glass marbles in to take up the extra volume... Any advice is welcome. Since this was my 1st time using a carboy/blow-off tube combination as a primary fermentation vessel, is this amount of loss normal? This was also my first time with a Wyeast liquid yeast (German Ale, starter solution). My guess it was a combination of a very healthy yeast culture combined with a fairly "rich" wort (porter-ish) that caused all this excitement. If I can expect to lose this amount in general, I'd like to hear from you folks with experience in this system. What do you folks do? Yours brewly, Dave Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 4 Apr 90 12:19:19 EST From: pkel at psych.purdue.edu (Paul L. Kelly) Subject: Hops and the gallbladder I recently heard that one danger that may be involved in drinking homebrew involves the greater hop content that brewers use to enhance flavor and promote longer shelf life. The alleged danger is gallbladder damage. Does anyone have any comments, information, or refutations to offer this assertion? I'm wondering if this danger is real, and if it is, at what point does hop content become dangerous? Is it the alpha acid content of the hop, or is it the flavoring or aromatic properties that pose a threat? I'm hoping that this is all just nonsense, but my source was a university professor who teaches a graduate level class in fermentation. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ pkel at brazil.psych.purdue.edu | "Humpty Dumpty was pushed." Paul L. Kelly | Department of Psychological Sciences | "Life's a bunch o' sh*t, when you look Purdue University | at it." --Eric Idle, _Life of Brian_ West Lafayette, IN 47907 | ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 4 Apr 90 10:59:52 EDT From: ileaf!io!peoria!cjh at EDDIE.MIT.EDU (Chip Hitchcock) Subject: re uses for spent grains > So, I just thought I would second Don Perley's remarks by saying that Dried > Distillers Grains (or DDG, as its commonly known) has come to be looked on as > a basic cattle feed ingredient. Chase Farms, the local natural cider mill (I haven't tried hardening their cider, but since there are no preservatives it makes a great condensed (~8:1) jelly) said when I visited that the pommace (solids left after pressing out the juice) is trucked off to a local pig farm. They also said that those are the happiest pigs in New England.... Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 4 Apr 90 13:39:06 EDT From: hisata!doug at gatech.edu Subject: Honey Killers! Florian the healthy is absolutely right about bacteria in honey that did in some kids. It seems like that was recently--the last 5 or 10 years-- and so postdates the text I was using. Science moves on! I don't recall any of the particulars of the contaminated honey--the source or any previous processing. Commercial honey is frequently heated (gently) to prevent fermentation and drive off excess moisture that would encourage it to granulize. This would diminish or destroy its antibacterial properties. I don't know if honey as it comes from the comb might not still be antibacterial. Still, don't take any chances with babies. BTW, some of my honey extracting equipment does double duty in my brewing. One nice gadget is a strainer I use for filtering my honey. It's about 8 1/2" in diameter at the top. There is a removable, flat- bottomed coarse strainer in the top, then the bottom is hemispherical and VERY fine. It has expandable wire arms that fit nicely over my honey bucket--but are worthless with a carboy. It's great to use in filtering grains and hops. When the top strainer gets full, I can dump it, and the bottom strainer catches all the fine particles and even some trub. Very heavy duty, and expensive (about $25). Available from Brushy Mountain Bee Farm in Monrovia, NC. Send me mail if anyone wants the address. Doug the contaminated gatech!hisata!doug Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 4 Apr 90 13:46:32 edt From: Chris Shenton <chris at asylum.gsfc.nasa.gov> Subject: Re: uses for spent grains CRF at PINE.CIRCA.UFL.EDU writes: > Dried Distillers Grains (or DDG, as its commonly known) has come to be > looked on as a basic cattle feed ingredient. I don't have any cows, but I am trying to start a small garden in my small, urban yard. Can/should I use the spent grains as a mulch? If so, do I first have to let them compost? Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 4 Apr 90 12:00:39 MDT From: hplabs!mage!lou Subject: boiling honey In digest #391 Florian writes: >"Doug," in #389 quoted from a reference text on honey and beehives, and >indicated information as to the antibacterial properties of honey. It is >my understanding that honey can contain a bacteria which has been known >to be fatal to children under the age of two years. Being a father, I >was aware of this and forbid my child from having honey for the first two >years. The presence of this bacteria (pointed out in the baby books) >suggests that anti-bacterial properties of honey are only partial. In any >case, I don't think there is anything to lose by boiling honey during the >mead- or beer-making process. Florian, The reading I've done on making mead indicates that is, indeed, something to lose by boiling honey. There are some light, aromatic compounds that are easily driven off by boiling. What these sources recommend is pasteurization, not sterilization. That is, keep the temperature >165F for about 20 minutes. For mead, I bring the honey-water mixture to a boil, turn off the heat and cover with a sanitized lid, and let it sit. For honey-beers, I go through a normal boil for the beer, then add the honey and bring to a boil again before turning off the heat. The heat capacity of 2.5-3. gallons of liquid is enough to keep the temperature high enough for a long enough time. Louis Clark reply to: mage!lou at ncar.ucar.com Return to table of contents
Date: 4 April 1990 9:53:52 am From: parcplace!pencin at uunet.UU.NET (Russ Pencin) Subject: Re: hydrogen sulphide odor I brew a Steam knock-off regularly using Wyeast 2007 American lager - St. Louis, and get the sulpher odor that you discribe during the first 2 days of fermentation. At first, I worried ( silly boy ), now I just crack the window enough to vent it out of the bathroom. My GUESS is that the yeast is "scrubbing" some nasty out of the wort. The other regular brew is an english bitter using #1098, and I get no off odors at all. Bottom-line is RELAX, atleast wait until you rack it to the secondary, the steal alittle, and taste it... this is the surest way to catch a bad batch early. Russ Return to table of contents
End of HOMEBREW Digest #392, 04/05/90 ************************************* -------
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