HOMEBREW Digest #4091 Tue 12 November 2002

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  Re: Looking for Water Basics (John Palmer)
  Horehound Beer (noel watson)
  Re:  Brew pubs, breweries in Park City, UT ("Mark J. Bradakis")
  3L Magnums ("jps")
  Sanitizing Question ("Bill & Ginny Owen")
  importers (Jeremy Bergsman)
  Gott Cooler Mashing - Capacity/Efficiency/Strike Temps ("Rogers, Mike")
  What to do...if anything? ("Springstead, Randy")
  barleywine pitching and more speise (Marc Sedam)
  Re: Imported Beers? ("Richard L Scholz")
  Rack and add water? ("Mark BitzMart")
  hops...different with corn? (Darrell.Leavitt)
  Ideal Conditions for a Yeast Starter (Kevin White)
  Re: importers (Bryan Gros)
  refrigerator tubing as wort chiller? (Drew Shelton)
  Re: Potassium Sorbate in Cider (Michael Grice)
  RE: Barley Wine Time! ("Tom")
  What Happened ? ("Axle Maker")
  Altbier water profile (Petr Otahal)
  re: import beers ("Mark Tumarkin")
  Schlenkerla (Jeff & Ellen)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Sun, 10 Nov 2002 21:11:50 -0800 From: John Palmer <jjpalmer at altrionet.com> Subject: Re: Looking for Water Basics Randy asks for a good tutorial on what he needs from his local water and why, and how, and what, to brew with it. First question is: What is your brewing method? Extract or All-Grain? If you are extract brewing (including steeping), then you can skip alot of the chemistry and just worry about the flavors (for the most part). If you are all-grain brewing, then you need to understand the basics of water chemistry, know how that will affect your mash, and then worry about the flavors. The second question is: What style are you trying to brew? The answer drives the way you answer the first question. Many people go to great lengths trying to match the mineral profile of particular brewing cities (like Dormund) when it is like chasing your tail because most water reports list annual averages and not the electrically/pH balanced analysis for any one test. And given the probable seasonal variation in many water supplies, it is hard to know what the ideal water profile for the city may have been. What I am trying to say is: Close enough is good enough. Broadly target a particular brewing city's profile for a style, Know your local water, make a couple of restrained, targeted adjustments, and then focus on your malts, and other brewing processes. Your beer will thank you for it. For a pretty good discussion of what water does and why, read chapters 4 and 15 in the online edition of my book, How To Brew. I think it will answer your initial questions, and then everyone will be more than happy to answer any additional questions you have. We love this hobby. Good Brewing, John Oh yeah: http://www.howtobrew.com/section1/chapter4.html and http://www.howtobrew.com/section3/chapter15.html John Palmer john at howtobrew.com www.realbeer.com/jjpalmer www.howtobrew.com - the free online book of homebrewing Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2002 16:50:38 +1100 From: noel watson <noelwatson at useoz.com> Subject: Horehound Beer G'day All, Spring always brings a heap of Horehound patches around here in Avoca Central Victoria ( Australia). Town history states that everybody used to brew it in the 1800-1900's, but the only recipes I can get from the local Hysterical Society are non-alcoholic! (Lots of Methodists around here then) Does anybody have a recipe for horehound beer (alcoholic) or any taste memories they can give me?? Regards, Noel Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 10 Nov 2002 23:16:44 -0700 (MST) From: "Mark J. Bradakis" <mjb at cs.utah.edu> Subject: Re: Brew pubs, breweries in Park City, UT Wasatch Pub Brewery, one of the first brewpubs in the state, I think it was the first, but I can't quite remember at the moment, is in Park City, up at the high end of Main Street. I've not been there for some time, but they've always had decent food, sometimes great food, and a nice selection of beer. One must keep in mind various anomilies of Utah state law regarding the consumption of alcohol, so be forewarned that the 3.2% [*] stout may be a bit lacking in certain characteristics. If you happen to stop at a state liquor store, keep an eye out for Uinta Brewing's Barley Wine, which being sold in a liquor store rather than a beer tavern is not subject to the arcane restrictions dictated by the Utah theocracy. In truth, a number of Utah beers can be fairly tasty despite the low alcohol content, such as Uinta's King's Peak Porter or Squatter's Polygamy Porter [Why have just one?] Also check out Moab Brewing's Scorpion Ale for a nice hoppy pale. It is possible to enjoy quaffing a few in Utah, believe it or not. mjb. *: The 3.2 percent limit is by weight, so don't be fooled by beers that have "4% alc. by volume" on them, it is the same as 3.2 by weight. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2002 02:21:24 -0500 From: "jps" <segedy at gsinet.net> Subject: 3L Magnums Was down at the local corner store getting a gallon of milk and saw 3 liter "Magnum" bottles of Heineken. Was corked with champagne cork and wired. and a gift box). Bottles are about 20" tall. (Got a few weird looks when I went back in with a measuring tape to measure it.) Seemed like a nice alternative to mini kegs. Unfortunatly the $25 price tag for a little more than a six-packs worth. But some emptys might be found around during the holidays. My question : Has anyone used such bottles and if so would the amount of priming suger be the same as with 12oz bottles? John Segedy NH Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2002 07:28:12 -0500 From: "Bill & Ginny Owen" <billginny at cox.net> Subject: Sanitizing Question Hi, James John Palmer's book "How to Brew" suggests using the dishwasher to sanitize bottles: "The steam from the drying cycle will effectively sanitize all surfaces. Bottles and other equipment with narrow openings should be pre-cleaned. Run the equipment through the full wash cycle without using any detergent or rinse agent." When I used this method with our new Kitchenaid dishwasher, that batch had the tell tale white ring around the neck, indicating the strong possibility of an infection of some sort. In order to check to see if it was the dishwasher sanitizing method, on the next batch I did some bottles in the dishwasher and some in starsan. Guess what. The dishwasher group developed the white ring, but the starsan group did not. Obviously, that method does not work with all dishwashers. I hope this helps answer your question. Bill Owen Star City Brewers Guild Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2002 08:30:37 -0500 From: Jeremy Bergsman <jeremy at bergsman.org> Subject: importers > Rodenbach. Is this still imported? > Schlenferla rauchbier. I saw this once a couple months ago in a store > > Who are the importers? Bryan, You're the perfect straight man, thanks. You should check out my importers page: http://bergsman.org/jeremy/beerstuff/importers.html There you will find that Rodenbach is imported by Vanberg and deWulf and still appears on their web page. Contact them to find distributors in the east bay (used to be California Wine Warehouse). The distributor can be called to find a retailer, or your favorite retailer can be given the distributor name and asked to order you some. If you mean Schlenkerla Rauchbier this is listed as imported by B United. It is still listed on their page, but they are notorious for bringing in single shipments of a beer and sort of acting like they are a regular importer. - -- Jeremy Bergsman jeremy at bergsman.org http://www.bergsman.org/jeremy Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2002 09:27:07 -0500 From: "Rogers, Mike" <mike.rogers at eds.com> Subject: Gott Cooler Mashing - Capacity/Efficiency/Strike Temps In response to past posts about Gott coolers... I finished my 10th all grain batch utilizing a 10 gal Gott cooler for mashing. This batch was a Strong Scotch Ale (wee heavy), with a grain bill of 24.25 lbs. I used 7.5 gallons of water based upon a 1.25 quart to lb water to grain ratio. The mash was pretty full. I'd have to say that 25lbs is about the limit for a 10 gal cooler. Regarding efficiency. I have used Pro*Mash for all 10 batches and mash for about 75 minutes. When crushing my own grain (medium crush), and using a 1.1 to 1.25 water to grain ratio, my actual efficiency is almost always 85% (give or take a pt). One exception occurred when using pre-crushed grain (very fine) leftover from a local brewery closing, which pushed my efficiency over 90%. Regarding Strike Temperature... I'm amazed at the ability for the Gott cooler to hold the mash temps. When fully closed, the cooler usually drops between one and three degrees during the 75 minute mash. I preheat the cooler by filling with hot tap water and closing the lid. Just before mash time, I empty out the water and begin with the mash. I use Pro*Mash to calculate the strike temp based upon the grain temp and amount. One additional note. I use a Phils false bottom with a mash pad. I literally do not have to take more than a half a cup of wort from the mash to ensure a clear run off. Gott coolers are a great way to get into all-grain brewing... Cheers, Mike Mike Rogers Cass River Homebrewers - Mid Michigan www.hbd.org/cassriverhomebrewers mailto:mike01_rogers at yahoo.com [76.4, 2.6] Apparent Rennerian Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2002 09:41:59 -0500 From: "Springstead, Randy" <Randy.Springstead at HollandUSA.com> Subject: What to do...if anything? Friday nite 11/8, I primed & kegged 5 gallons. To my surprise Saturday at noon, I checked the blow off and found that the keg didn't seal. I replaced the "O" ring and it is now sealed. My concern is that the brew will not be carbonated sufficiently. Should I reopen and re-prime and if I do, how much corn sugar to add? Force carb is not an option for me now as I push my kegged beer with 80/20 mix. -oldshoe Brewing in Muskegon, MI springs28 at attbicom Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2002 10:01:07 -0500 From: Marc Sedam <marc_sedam at unc.edu> Subject: barleywine pitching and more speise Adam asks about how to ensure his barleywine ferments well... The best suggestion I can give is to choose the yeast you wish to use and make a "regular" gravity beer with it. Then use the entire yeast slurry from that batch to ferment your barleywine with. When I do this, I usually make a crowd-pleasing beer that needs little aging (ESBs and APAs work well) and place in a chest freezer when the beer is completely done fermenting. That way I get ALL the yeast from the first batch. Rack your wort on to this yeast cake, or vice versa, and fermentation ahoy! Oxygenation is always good and helpful, but if you have good pitching rates then you'll just need a few minutes of bubbling air through (or in my case, a few 30 sec shots of pure O2) to make things roll well. I would also advise a teaspoon of yeast nutrient added to the barleywine wort too. Fred J. appropriately called me out on my recommendations on adding speise to carbonate beer. Fred is right that a beer with 1.040 OG will have less carbonation than one that has a 1.060 OG. I don't think empirically it will have 50% more CO2, but that's not really the point either. You could go through the calculations easily enough, assuming you knew the real attenuation of the extract and the yeast you're using. It's a pretty simple calculation if you have the inputs and a desire to do them. Took me maybe 5 mins to go through. But just the same it has been my experience that, for most regular gravity beers, 2 quarts of speise will give you a carbonation level that's "just fine." Plus I have most of my beers on the same gas line so they'll equilibrate over time. I'm not a stickler for having the completely proper carbonation level (except, perhaps, in a wheat beer or Berliner weiss where the carbonation is part of the experience) either, so you'll just have to do what best suits your brewing habits. Hope this helps. Cheers! Marc Sedam Chapel Hill, NC Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2002 10:15:20 -0500 From: "Richard L Scholz" <richard.scholz at verizon.net> Subject: Re: Imported Beers? Bryan Writes: Date: Fri, 08 Nov 2002 21:43:53 -0800 From: "Bryan L. Gros" <bgros at aggienetwork.com> Subject: import beers Anyone know anything about the following beers: Rodenbach. Is this still imported? Schlenferla rauchbier. I saw this once a couple months ago in a store Who are the importers? thanks. I reply: Rodenbach is imported by Vanberg & Dewulf of Cooperstown NY ( The Ommegang brewery folks ) Don Fienberg told me last May '02 that Rodenbach would be in the next container. It never arrived! I don't know the status as of now but they have nothing to the contrary that they can't get any more on their web site. I'll try to remember to ask next time I speak to them. Schlenferla is imported by B. United International. It comes in three styles: Ur-bock, Marzen, and Wezien. Matius usually has good stock of these in the Connecticut warehouse and they're available through multiple distributors on the east coast. ( I don't know their availability around the rest of the country ) Hope this helps. Richard L Scholz www.bierkraft.com Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2002 09:19:23 -0600 From: "Mark BitzMart" <mark at bitzmart.com> Subject: Rack and add water? Thanks to all who responded to my newbie questions. I was pleasantly surprised at quantity and quality of the responses! I brewed my second batch over the weekend but with a lot of unwanted help from Murphy. As delays occurred and time became important, pressure mounted and more mistakes occurred. Yes, I _was_ relaxed and having a homebrew but it didn't help. The stinger was when my new wort chiller leaked (squirted!) into the chilling wort, possibly contaminating it. I am not worried, however, and I'll just wait and see if any nasties got in by watching and tasting it when it's time. In fact, I think I will rename this batch "16 Mistake Brown Ale." Sigh. At least I learned a lot in one batch. My question involves the hydrometer reading. I brewed a recipe which started out as Elbro Nerkte (from Papazian's book) but some changes were made. His target OG was 1.042-1.046 and mine was 1.056. Looking back over my notes and calculating how much water I used, I am guessing that rather than having a full 5g of water in my plastic fermentor I have approx 4.0g to 4.5g, and that may at least partially explain the difference. Fermentation is hard at work (Wyeast 1272), but only after I helped warm the bucket with a heating pad and wrapped a blanket around it. I don't want to disturb it at this point. My question is: in a few days should I rack the wort into my glass carboy for a secondary fermentation, and can I add boiled, cooled water at that point to top off to 5g? I don't want to end up with overly sweet beer. The target FG is 1.010-1.014. Here are the brewing details: 3.5lb John Bull Bulldog Blend, Dark liquid malt extract 3.3lb Muntons Dark Malt Extract 3/4 lb Crystal Malt (forgot to get the black patent malt) 2 oz Fuggles boiling 1 oz Fuggles finishing Wyeast 1272, 3 wks old Est 4.0g-4.5g water, but should be a total of 5g I should've known better than to brew a beer whose name has these anagrams: Ten Bloke Err Torn Elk Beer Mark Baich Buffalo Grove, IL Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2002 10:55:52 -0500 From: Darrell.Leavitt at esc.edu Subject: hops...different with corn? I have been experimenting with brewers corn/ flaked corn in several different brews, and wonder: I usually try to balance the malt with the hops, ie if there is more malt, I'll generally up the hop count as well...but if one uses corn,does the "effect" of the hops remain about the same?..., or another way of asking is whether a larger amount of corn may enhance or show the hops more than an equal amount of grain?,...or does this make any sense at all? Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2002 11:08:38 -0500 From: Kevin White <kwhite at bcpl.net> Subject: Ideal Conditions for a Yeast Starter Steve Alexander professed: > > Making yeast and making beer are two different things. > To grow yeast you want to keep the SG low, the temps > warm, the amount of monosaccharides low and give plenty > of oxygen. > What are the ideal SG and temperature (and any other critical conditions) for propogating a typical ale yeast in a starter? Instead of casting a starter into a larger wort volume for more growth, is there anything wrong with flocculating the yeast by refrigeration, decanting, warming, and then mixing with another volume of fresh oxygenated wort in the same container? Kevin White Columbia, MD Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2002 08:14:56 -0800 (PST) From: Bryan Gros <blgros at yahoo.com> Subject: Re: importers - --- Jeremy Bergsman <jeremy at bergsman.org> wrote, in response to my question: > Bryan, > > You're the perfect straight man, thanks. You should check out my importers > page: > http://bergsman.org/jeremy/beerstuff/importers.html > > <snip> Thanks, Jeremy. What a great page. Will bookmark it for sure. Happy to give you a chance to advertise it. Bryan Gros Oakland, CA Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2002 13:24:10 -0800 (PST) From: Drew Shelton <drew at homebrew.com> Subject: refrigerator tubing as wort chiller? i found 50ft of 3/8in "refrigerator tubing" at Home Depot for $20 i believe it is used as a line from the water supply to the ice maker it seems to be exactly the same as tubing labeled "soft copper tubing" there was an open package sitting around so i checked it out and found it to be pliable and seems to have plenty of mechanical strength but i am wondering if it's safe to use for a wort chiller has anyone ever used "refrigerator tubing" to build a wort chiller? drew flint, MI _____________________________________________________________ ** Get your own ' at homebrew.com' email address at http://mail.homebrew.com ** Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2002 16:11:00 -0600 From: Michael Grice <grice at binc.net> Subject: Re: Potassium Sorbate in Cider "Steve Alexander" <steve-alexander at worldnet.att.net> wrote: >Michael Grice writes ... > >>>I started a batch of cider yesterday with a blend of store bought >>>ciders. [...] >>> I pitched a few packets of Coopers ale yeast. Today, there is >>no activity. Zero. I suspect there may have been Potassium sorbate or >>>[...] > >>I'd add yeast nutrient and aerate some more. If that doesn't help, try >>adding a more aggressive yeast. [...]. > >That would be good advice if this was a stuck fermentation, but it >isn't. It's not a fermentation at all. >I agree with the original poster that something - perhaps a sorbic acid >salt has been added as a preservative. Sorbic acid is not toxic to yeast, >but does prevent them from fermenting sugars. Sorbic acid is used in >winemaking to prevent complete attenuation. If it's sorbate you can't >easily remove it but you may be able to dilute it with unspiked cider. >Best probably to consider it a failed attempt. Sorbic acid does not >inhibit bacteria like the E.coli of recent news scares so it's just >there to increase shelf life. For fermentation use cider (apple juice >for the non-NA set) direct from orchards or ones clearly labeled >'no preservatives added'. You are correct, it wasn't a stuck fermentation, but I certainly don't think this is bad advice. As I recall, the label didn't indicate that the juice contained any sorbate, so he didn't have any evidence that it contained sorbate besides the fact that fermentation hadn't started. There are other reasons why fermentation might not have started (old yeast, etc.). So what does he lose by adding another packet of yeast and some yeast nutrient? A couple of dollars. What does he lose by throwing in the towel? Whatever he invested in the juice, which could be significantly more. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2002 17:09:56 -0500 From: "Tom" <tomhale at isp01.net> Subject: RE: Barley Wine Time! >Date: Sat, 09 Nov 2002 >From: "Adam Wead" >Subject: Barley Wine Time! > >Fellow Brewing Brethern: > >I'm going to venture out and make my first barley wine. I'm planning way >ahead on this one, and will let it age so that I have it ready for next >Christmas (2003!). > >I need some general advice on pitching and aeration. > >I'm shooting for a very high gravity, on or over 1.100. I'm planning on >using Wyeast 1214 smack-pack, although I have 1084 and 1056 available as >well from the "yeast ranch." I'll step it up to a 700 ml vessel I use as a >starter. Then, I'll step it up a few times in that same vessel by adding >fesh wort so that I have a nice amount of slurry...at least a cup worth. >And, I'll think I'll go ahead and spring for an air pump to aerate it the >final batch. > >Any comments? How long should I have the air pump running to aerate the >final batch of wort? > >As always, thanks for the advice... > >Adam Wead Adam, I bottled my first (5 gal) batch of "barley wine" just last night-mine was only 1.075 OG. I used White Labs, Edinburgh Ale yeast--prepping it 24 hours ahead of time in a pint of high-gravity malt mixture. Immediately after pitching the yeast, I aerated the beer for 15 minutes using a small aquarium air pump. Within 10 hours the yeast activity became so violent that it blew the lid open on the fermenting tank 4 times and began to "boil" over. I finally had to leave the lid loose and enclose the tank in plastic bags, one over the bottom and one over the top, until it settled down enough to reinstall the air lock. The FG was a bit higher that expected at 1.027-I was hoping for 1.020 or so. Next time, I plan to gently rouse the yeast a couple of times during fermentation thinking that this will help to drop the FG closer to where it should be. After bottling last night, I had a little sample of the brew: green, but very tasty! I'm not sure I can wait 6 months for another sample. It sounds like you have a good plan, Adam-I'm sure that your brew will turn out fine. Tom Hale Greenwood, Virginia Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2002 18:43:25 -0500 From: "Axle Maker" <axlemaker at mindspring.com> Subject: What Happened ? I've read many times here about people pitching wort on top of a yeast cake from a previous batch, so I thought I would give this a try and now I need to know what happened ? 1st batch was an IPA, I used Northwestern Extract and specialty grains, it was fermented with Calif. Ale yeast (WLP001). It spent 2 week's in the primary and produced at least an inch of slurry in the bottom of the carboy. Then it spent another 2 week's dry hopped in the secondary. The O.G. was 10.58, and the F.G. was 10.12, the beer came out fine. The second batch was a Smoked Porter, once again it was made with Northwestern Extract and specialty grains. This was pitched on top of the cake from the IPA (the primary cake), it took off in 2 hours. 5 day's later it went from a 10.70 to a 10.20, and thats where it stopped. I keep my ale's in a dorm fridge with a Johnson Controller and keep thing's within the suggested temp range, I also aerate with pure O2, and rouse the yeast once or twice a day. When it stopped at 10.20 I let it warm up to room temp to see if that would help, it never moved. I never racked this one to a secondary. I bottled at 4 week's, it was still no lower than 10.20, a little under attenuated but didn't taste that bad. Well I tried one this weekend only to find it to be completely flat. WHAT HAPPENED ? Could I have done anything to fix this before I bottled ? Can it be fixed now that it is already bottled ? Thanx ! Axle... Axle's Alewerk's Rossville, Ga. Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 12 Nov 2002 10:54:19 +1100 From: Petr Otahal <potahal at utas.edu.au> Subject: Altbier water profile Brewers, I am planning to do a Duesseldorfer style Altbier on the weekend. I have read through the archives and my recipe is inspired by Al Korzonas' recipe posted in HBD #2827 (except I will need to substitute some of the Munich malt for Vienna as I dont have enough). The one thing I cant seem to find in the archives is the appropriate water profile for a Duesseldorfer Altbier. I have very soft, neutral water, low in total dissolved solids, and typically use just a little Calcium Chloride to boost the Ca level when brewing Pilsners or light lagers. Can I assume that Altbier would require a similar water profile to a pilsner? Do I want any sulphates in there to give the Altbier a longer finish to the bitterness? TIA Cheers Petr Otahal Hobart Tasmania Australia Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2002 19:18:30 -0500 From: "Mark Tumarkin" <mark_t at ix.netcom.com> Subject: re: import beers Bryan asked about the importers of Rodenbach & Schelenkerla. According to http://www.belgianstyle.com the importer of Rodenbach is Vanburg & DeWulf. My understanding is that Rodenbach Alexander has been discontinued but that Rodenbach & Rodenbach Grand Cru are still in production. But..... that doesn't mean they're being imported. I haven't seen any recently, though Dave Perez just found some on a trip to Atlanta. It was an older bottling that had been sitting on the shelf for a long time. He bought out the remaining stock & was kind enough to promise me a bottle of each. The Grand Cru has to be in my top handful of favorite beers. It would be unfortunate if this one becomes unavailable, so we'll have to keep our fingers crossed that Palm doesn't do away with it and that it starts showing up in our beer stores again. Aecht Schlenkerla is imported by B. United, they make several beers including a Marzen & a Urbock, and I think one other that I can't recall at the moment. These should be more readily available. Mark Tumarkin Hogtown Brewers Gainesville, FL Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2002 19:37:08 -0500 From: Jeff & Ellen <JeffNGladish at ij.net> Subject: Schlenkerla Bryan Gros asked about Schlenkerla Rauchbier. I happen to have a bottle of the Maerzen, which I bought last weekend. It says it is imported by United International, Chappaqua, NY 10514. I hope you can find some. Jeff Gladish, Tampa FL Return to table of contents
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