HOMEBREW Digest #4690 Wed 05 January 2005

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  Stuck Fermentation ("Lewis, Timothy M          HS")
  Re: Stuck Fermentation ("Spencer W. Thomas")
  Re: Sea Water? ("Martin Brungard")
  Re: Beer and Pretzels (Jeff Renner)
  RE: Vote for the HBD! ("Brian Lundeen")
  RE: Beer and Pretzels ("Doug Hurst")
  Shapes, viability and other staining tests? ("Fredrik")
  answer about WLP005, question about yeast ("Chad Stevens")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Wed, 5 Jan 2005 07:38:30 -0500 From: "Lewis, Timothy M HS" <tim.lewis at hs.utc.com> Subject: Stuck Fermentation I know this subject has many threads on it but I want to get some fresh opinions anyway...I've got a partial-mash Belgian Strong Dark Ale in the primary for just over a week now that started at 1.080 has been stuck at 1.030 for the last 3 days. Yeast was Wyeast 1388 Belgian Strong with a 0.5 liter starter. I know, I should have used a bigger starter for such a high OG, but anyway...I'm thinking that since it is almost there I can get it to finish by just rousing the yeast over the next few days before racking to the secondary, rather than adding a fresh starter or yeast nutrient ya think that'll do it? I've already got it sitting in a 70F space in my basement so it should be warm enough. I just did a Belgian Strong Golden Ale with Wyeast 1214 that seemed to finish fine from 1.080 to 1.015 perhaps the 1388 is not quite as alcohol tolerant? Thanks. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 05 Jan 2005 09:03:19 -0500 From: "Spencer W. Thomas" <hbd at spencerwthomas.com> Subject: Re: Stuck Fermentation Tim Lewis asks about his Belgian Strong Dark that went from 1.080 to 1.030 and "stuck" there. I can think of several possible reasons for this. In no particular order, they are: 1. The recipe ended up with lots of unfermentables in the wort, and fermentation is really finished. This seems unlikely, but could account for at least part of the problem. You say "partial mash" but don't give any further details. Is there sugar? What kind of extract did you use? What was your mash regimen? If you added any sugar, then 1.030 seems quite unlikely as a true final gravity. 2. The yeast is too cold. You say the space is at 70F. Is that 70F where the fermenter is sitting (on the floor?) Or is that 70F at "torso level" where your thermometer is sitting? Particularly in a basement, you may find 10-15 degrees difference between head level and floor level. Many Belgian yeasts are extremely temperature sensitive, and will just stop working below, say, 70F. If this is your problem, getting the fermenter off the floor into a warmer place may restart the fermentation (or it may not, depending on the yeast). 3. The yeast wasn't healthy enough at the start of fermentation. How did you prepare the starter? Did it get lots of aeration to encourage lots of strong yeast? If this is your problem, all the rousing in the world might not do the trick, and you'll have to add more yeast to finish the job. A neutral dry yeast would probably work well for that purpose. =Spencer in Ann Arbor, MI Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 05 Jan 2005 05:32:59 -0900 From: "Martin Brungard" <mabrungard at hotmail.com> Subject: Re: Sea Water? Alex posted an interesting link to a French brewery that uses seawater in its brewing process. I see that Alex is from Montreal, so he probably had no problem reading the site. I had the use Babelfish to translate. I did not find any description of what their water process was, but knowing the limits for ion concentrations in brewing and the composition of seawater, I can make the following observations. Seawater is composed of many ionic species. The major species are Chloride (19,400 ppm), Sodium (10,800 ppm), Sulfate (2,700 ppm), Magnesium (1,300 ppm), and Calcium (400 ppm). Given the taste-based concentration limits for chloride (~350 ppm) and sodium (~150 ppm) in high gravity beers, you can see that the brewers are probably using only a fraction of seawater in their brewing. The limits above suggest that no more than about 1.5 percent of their brewing water is seawater. I'd say this addition is really nothing more than a 'flavor ion' addition with the main components being table salt. This is obviously just hype, but sometimes you need something to set you apart from the pack. This French beer could still be a very enjoyable brew. Martin Brungard Tallahassee, FL Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 5 Jan 2005 09:58:21 -0500 From: Jeff Renner <jeffrenner at comcast.net> Subject: Re: Beer and Pretzels "Chris \"Pacman\" Ingermann" <maltmasher at yahoo.com> writes from Muncie, IN: >I came across Jeff Renner's pretzel recipe I had printed out a >long time ago and decided to finally give them a try tonight. >Man o man are they good. I've got a little work to do on making >them look a little better but the taste is phenomenal. > >Have a look at them: > >http://www.ingermann.com/images/food/Pretzels-1.jpg They look pretty good to me! >Thanks Jeff! You are welcome. Always glad to share things. Knowledge is meant to be shared, I think. For others who want to try baking these, see the original post at http://hbd.org/hbd/archive/3747.html#3747-11. There was a follow-up discussion about simmering them in a weak lye solution, which is necessary for that 'pretzelly" taste. There really isn't any source that I know of for food grade lye, but my investigations suggest that Red Devil and the like are probably quite free of nasty heavy metals, etc. Any you use very little. If you don't like the idea of using lye, or want to make these with children (as participants, not ingredients!), you could substitute a whole bunch of baking soda (sodium bicarbonate). Probably something like 1/2 - 3/4 cup. Cheers Jeff - -- Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan USA, JeffRenner at comcast.net "One never knows, do one?" Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943 Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 5 Jan 2005 09:53:26 -0600 From: "Brian Lundeen" <BLundeen at rrc.mb.ca> Subject: RE: Vote for the HBD! > > Date: Tue, 04 Jan 2005 17:24:22 +0000 > From: "Bill Smith" <billsmith11 at hotmail.com> > Subject: Vote for the HBD! > > > You can go to http://chef2chef.net/rank/beersites.shtml and > vote. You probably won't find HBD on the first page right > away so click on the "[26-50] [51-75] [76-100]" links to find > it. You can only vote once a day so be sure to come back everyday! > But... but... that's cheating, Bill. Shirley, you don't want the HBD to win by ballot stuffing or some other disreputable means. And with 31 votes when I checked, I'm afraid we'd be stuffing like Phil Yates stuffs his pants on Ladies Drink for Free night at the the town bar. Let it go, Bill. Embrace the fact that we are a small, elite group, not the hordes of belching, beer guzzling minions those Brew Rats have accumulated over the years. Cheers Brian, in -35C Winterpeg Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 05 Jan 2005 10:48:05 -0600 From: "Doug Hurst" <dougbeer2000 at hotmail.com> Subject: RE: Beer and Pretzels I agree that Rennner's recipe is fabulous. I made five batches to hand out as gifts around Christmas. They were delicious. It was hard not to eat them all myself. They definitely get easier to make as you repeat the process. You eventually learn the secret of the twist and flip. I can say that this recipe makes pretzels as good or better than the ones I was eating in Germany. An awesome treat is to cover the top of a pretzel with sliced cheese then put it in the toaster oven or broiler for a couple minutes until the cheese starts to brown. (insert Homer Simpson drooling sounds here) Thanks Jeff. Doug Hurst Chicago, IL Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 5 Jan 2005 19:47:22 +0100 From: "Fredrik" <carlsbergerensis at hotmail.com> Subject: Shapes, viability and other staining tests? (2nd try) Thanks alot Kurt for your response! 1. Shapes-------- Here are some pictures of the yeast (WY2565 kolsh strain). http://hem.bredband.net/frerad/beer/modelling/pictures/activated2565.jpg If I compare with nottingham and windsor these seem to have a very stable morphology (and much less confusing to me). Could it be that the koelsh strain is simply a bit more unstable in this respect? I should add that the rod frequency increase upon activation with wort. I have exercised sanitation and I think there is no likely way any contamination can have grown this frequent at this point anyway, unless it was already present in the yeast bag? Any idea if there is any specific differences in metabolic regulations that you can expect from a rod like cell as compared to a spherical one. This is interesting. I was mostly confused from what I saw. If unstable morhphology on this strain is a likely explanation to the observrations(?) I would be satisfied with this explanation! 2. Viability------ I followed the link you posted and looked up some other sources and it seems some of those fluorescent dyes are better, more exact and less ambigous stain detection, but unfortunately I don't have a flourscent microscope :( I am using pretty basic hobby equipment. I have a decent hobby microscope, cell counting chambers, plates, pipettes and non-expensive standard dyes. > In general, it's not clear to me why a two-fold difference > in cell counting is going to matter much in brewing. >From a practical point of view I think that under or over pitching within a factor 2 relative to your target isn't going to "ruin any beer". Perhaps it might have some slight measurable flavour impacts though, I don't know. I guess that is one of the interesting things remaining to find out and part of why I bother with this :) But now I am at least aware of this(most important thing) and so far I guess I will have to continue to double check viability with plating and staining and see if it's possible to find any useful correction terms once I get enough data. The optimum outcome that I hope for is if one could use methylene blue + find a mathematical correction term that could be applied to correct for possible overestimates. But chances are that there are non constant factors that would change this correction. Perhaps the glycogen level could be such a factor? that's at least roughly measureable. Right now I am assuming that the correct value is somewhere in between the staining reading and the (flocc-size corrected) plating reading. But the interval left is still too big to make me happy. I certainly have some slight volume and dilution errors but I think they can't explain the entire deviation. I'll see what future data tells me. 3. UFA, sterol, trehalose estimation -------------- Does anyone know of a practical way to at least determine UFA, sterol and trehalose levels at home without hard to get or expensive equipment? I have some performance based ideas based on the CO2 profiles, but I was thinking of something more direct that could serve as a double check? Any staining procedures? I read about a procedure to measure the shift in reducing (sugar) power in the slurry after a trehalose hydrolysing enzyme but where the heck does a homebrewer get hold of such an enzyme that isn't horribly expensive? It would be really cool if one could probe for this. /Fredrik Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 5 Jan 2005 10:57:37 -0800 From: "Chad Stevens" <zuvaruvi at cox.net> Subject: answer about WLP005, question about yeast Kurt asks about WLP005: http://www.whitelabs.com/search.asp Is a good link to search for White Labs yeast characteristics. Apart from that, these are my personal notes on White's yeast: WLP 023 Burton - Fruity, plum, raison WLP 006 Bedford - Clean, accentuates malt slightly WLP 022 Essex - Dry, clean, non-descript, boring (most judges will probably love it) WLP 002 English - Fuller's? WLP 005 British - Accentuates malt, pruney ester WLP 004 Irish - Clean, crisp, Guinness? WLP 028 Edinburgh - Malty, clean, soft, round, full I realize this is a bit sparse, but it's enough for me to remember what yeast gave what quality and which one to pick for my next brew. FWIW. ______________________________ I've got a question. I got into a friendly discussion about pitching yeast. The question is, "must yeast go through a full life cycle to get a clean result?" In other words, one school of thought is that you must aerate wort, pitch a given quantity which will undergo aerobic growth, then at some point, when the o2 is used up and we have arrived at the appropriate number of cells, the yeast shift to anaerobic metabolism and do there stuff. To play devils advocate, what if, you went through this process with a five gallon batch of wort at 1.050, then pitch an identical quantity of 1.050 un-aerated wort on the entire yeast cake. No aerobic growth occurs, and we go as straight to fermentation as yeastily possible. We are already at the optimum yeast count and no growth is necessary. So assuming no funk was developed in the previous batch, and assuming the previous batch was racked off right at the end of fermentation so the yeast have just flocced and aren't too far into lala land, we arrive at the real question, "is there any reason to assume that one method would result in any different flavor profile from the other?" Has anyone done a side by side comparison of these two methods and noted the differences? http://plantbio.berkeley.edu/~taylor/pmb290/genomics.pdfs/terLinde.JBact. 1999.pdf Studies such as the above demonstrate marked differences in metabolic function in aerobic vs. anaerobic growth conditions. Additionally, glycogen stores are not increased at as great a rate under anaerobic conditions so fermenting batch after batch under anaerobic conditions may be detrimental to long term yeast viability. That having been said, I do a lot of repitching and haven't noticed a great deal of flavor profile difference in first pitch batches vs. subsequent re-pitch batches. Any comments are appreciated. Chad Stevens QUAFF San Diego http://www.quaff.org/AFC2005/AFCHBC.html Accepting your brew entries now for America's Finest City Homebrew Competition! Return to table of contents
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