HOMEBREW Digest #4721 Sun 13 February 2005

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  Wine Country ("Lau, William T")
  link of the week - NorthernBrewer forums (bob.devine)
  Luxury of Craft Brews (Alexandre Enkerli)
  Aeration stone cleaning ("quinn meneely")
  Diaectyl rest for ales? ("Greg 'groggy' Lehey")
  WL Edinburgh a slow fermenter?? ("John Misrahi")
  Re: I want more Malt Flavor! ("-S")
  London Breweries/Pubs (Jim Liddil)
  Re: Seefahrtsbier - curiouser and curiouser ("Greg 'groggy' Lehey")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Fri, 11 Feb 2005 08:40:37 -0500 From: "Lau, William T" <william.lau at astrazeneca.com> Subject: Wine Country Dave Larsen writes about his wine country tour. I would like further info. on how he set up the appointments with the smaller wineries. I tried personal e-mail but it failed. Dave, feel free to e-mail me directly. Bill Lau Operations Supervisor AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals LP 587 Old Baltimore Pike Newark, DE 19702 Phone 302-286-4948 Fax 302-286-3126 william.lau at astrazeneca.com Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 12 Feb 2005 18:59:01 +0000 From: bob.devine at att.net Subject: link of the week - NorthernBrewer forums A very active homebrewer discussion forum is hosted by Northern Brewer (I have no association with it). http://forum.northernbrewer.com/index.php Bob Devine Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 12 Feb 2005 16:23:17 -0500 From: Alexandre Enkerli <aenkerli at indiana.edu> Subject: Luxury of Craft Brews CBSer Frank Patino sent a link to the following article on microbreweries: http://lexus.msn.com/id/2074206/sid/2097342?GT1=6132 Not particularly informative or insightful (wouldn't get huge karma on Slashdot) but it's interesting to see such things published in such contexts. In fact (been meaning to post something about this for a while), there seems to be an increase in mindshare for quality beer in general. Our personal perspectives might be skewed by the fact we all happen to like good beer, but the idea of "better beer" does seem to make its way into the "general public." Difficult to assess, and it's not the goal of the exercise, but something's going on. In fact, there seems to be some kind of a social, fluid, organic, informal, acephalous, grassroots movement for "Better Beer" in the US and elsewhere (Canada, Australia, Western Europe). This "movement" involves such wonderful people as ourselves, homebrewers, along with "specialty beer aficionados," beer importers, "lifestyle" journalists, pub owners, and, of course, craft brewers. CAMRA in the UK is part of it and are probably the most obvious "activist" part. But there are many parts to this movement and direct activism is only one. One very interesting part of this is that competition *within* the movement isn't very important. What's more important is for this movement to overcome "macros" so that having another brewpub in the same city or getting a liquor store to import more beer isn't too much of a threat to anyone else involved. To a certain extent, the more participants in this movement, the better it is for the movement as a whole. In a large city (e.g. Montreal ;->), the presence of several brewpubs may in fact mean more patrons for each brewpub. People who care about beer tend not to be very faithful to a given place anyway and diversity does help. For some people, this might seem counterintuitive but just think of the Starbucks phenomenon. True, they've stole a lot of patrons from local coffee shop and they're much hated for that (and many other reasons). But it's rather strange that more than one Starbucks can thrive in a very limited area, sometimes right across from each other. IANAEconomist but there's surely a lot of literature on this. Even the Brewmaster game seems to grasp part of this principle. The threat isn't really from other players (representing other craft brewers) but from macros. There's a level of competition, similar to that of beer shows, but it's rather friendly. So maybe the concept is that of friendly and healthy competition. Don't crush your competitor, increase the market together. Specifically for beer, the important thing here might be the change in perception. While wine might still be consider the main "luxury drink" in the US and some other places, beer is clearly getting a much better reputation. As this goes on, more people are getting into better beer, including people who were put off by macro brews. There's even an added dimension of snobism in some cases, in the sense that actual snobs may now find beer they're not ashamed to drink publicly! This is certainly a most interesting period in the history of beer. Randy Mosher's /Radical Brewing/ connects to it (can't wait to finish it) and homebrewing is certainly a big part of this. Granted, there might be less active homebrewers now than there were a few years ago, at the height of the HB explosion. But homebrewing now benefits from an incredible amount of accumulated knowledge (thanks in no small part to the HBD), some neat new gadgets, and good quality supplies. So, let's pat ourselves in the back and encourage our local craft brewers, importers, specialty beer aficionados, and beer journalists! :-) AleX in South Bend, IN [129.7mi, 251.5] Apparent Rennerian Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 12 Feb 2005 19:07:07 -0600 From: "quinn meneely" <qmeneely at hotmail.com> Subject: Aeration stone cleaning I have an aeration stone that I havent used for a while, and it seems to be clogged. I have tried both PBW and BLC and no go.What is the best way to get it into working order? Also could I use this stone to carbonate with now that I am kegging, I do believe it is a .2 micron stone, If I cant use it what size do others use? Thanks Quinn Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 13 Feb 2005 18:02:40 +1030 From: "Greg 'groggy' Lehey" <grog at lemis.com> Subject: Diaectyl rest for ales? I'm currently brewing a brew each of ale with Wyeast 1187 Ringwood Ale Yeast and Wyeast 1968 ESB Ale yeast. The Wyeast product list (http://www.wyeastlab.com/beprlist.htm) states for 1968: Diacetyl production is noticeable and a thorough rest; 50-70&deg; F, (10-21&deg; C) is necessary. There are similar comments for 1187. But what does that mean? I know of diacetyl rests for lagers, but a rest over a span of 11&deg; seems difficult to understand. How long? Should the temperature vary? If it doesn't, what's the difference between secondary fermentation at 20&deg; and a diacetyl rest at 20&deg;? My guess is that this statement means "vary temperature from 10 to 21" (or the other way round). But over what period of time? Any input would be welcome. FWIW, I did the entire fermentation of both at 20&deg; (see http://www.lemis.com/grog/brewing/brew-48.html for more details). Greg - -- Finger grog at lemis.com for PGP public key. See complete headers for address and phone numbers. Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 13 Feb 2005 09:58:07 -0600 From: "John Misrahi" <lmoukhin at sprint.ca> Subject: WL Edinburgh a slow fermenter?? Has anyone here found White Labs Edinburgh yeast to work at a snail's pace (or slightly slower)?? I pitched a tube of it maybe 3 weeks or a month ago into an ESB..the gravity was 1.046 . It took a week to go down to 1.012. I had skimmed some yeast and gave it to my friend, which he pitched into a strong scotch ale..I think it was chugging for 2 weeks. I repitched some as well into a scottish ale (1.052) this past monday. As of friday it, was only down to 1.030! Holy cow! 4 days to drop only 22 points?? I took a sanitized brew spoon and gently stirred the krausen back in, it's quite the top cropper and i was wondering if maybe the yeast is not in sufficient contact with the wort? (does that make sense??) I have it fermenting at about 65..I know they recommend that as the minimum temperature...should I warm it up? John Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 13 Feb 2005 10:32:49 -0500 From: "-S" <-s at adelphia.net> Subject: Re: I want more Malt Flavor! Brendan McGinn says, > I want more Malt Flavor! And we all do at times. We should define what we are talking about. "Malty" by definition describes the flavor of barley malt, tho' this requires some qualification. Unsprouted barley is just 'grainy' in flavor and even the germinated barley grains have only a grainy, vegetal, soluble starchy character which isn't all that attractive. The flavor magic begins as the chitted barley is dried and moves to high pitch as high temp kilning takes place ... something called 'Maillard reactions' are the force behind what we typically describe as 'malty flavor'. There is a lot of homebrew misinformation and broken terminlogy about Maillard reactions and we haven't time to sort it all out today, a short description will have to do. Maillard reactions aren't some simple direct and fully explicable reaction like the cracking of starch by alpha-amylase. Instead it describes a large interacting set of reactions between many 'sets' of related chemicals. LC Maillard, a French chemist, suggested the outline of this system of reactions in 1912, and even today the system is not fully 'proven', and new books on aspects of Maillard reactions appear most every year, here almost a century later. In any case the basics are that amino acids and 'sugars' can be heated to form a myriad of chemical products, which happen to have a very wide range of flavor and aroma characteristics. A number of years ago Charlie Scandrett and I posted voluminously on the topic of Maillard reaction products and (when it is up) Charlie's posts appear in 'The Brewery' secion at hdb.org. The specific flavors/aroma produced as minor constituents of the Maillard products range from malty, to maple syrup flavor, to bread crust, to the oddly mellow flavors found in a zambaglione and many others. The specific flavors and aromas produced are dependent on many factors, but the specific sugars and especially the specific amino acids are key to the flavor. The rate and relative composition are dependent on pH of the heated mix, and extremely dependent on temperature. Very little Maillard flavor product is produced below 70C, a significant amount at 100C, and a much greater peak appears around 120C-140C. This is of course a gross generalization. Despite the high temps, the presence of *small* amounts of water at least greatly increases the rate of production of Maillard flavor products, and may be necessary for the flavor production. Some of the ancilliary reactions that confuse the picture and terminology are caramelization (which only involves sugars, and possibly free nitrogen) and also the creation of darkly colored, but flavor inactive melanoidins. The whole issue of Maillard reaction is sometimes referred to as 'browning reactions', but there are many non-Maillard browning reactions. I regularly read about Maillard reactions a the cause of roast meat color and flavor, but there are actually a lot of amino-fatty acid browning reactions that dominate that arena - and the near absence of sugars explains why this is not Maillard. There are a lot of non-Maillard pyrolysis (literally 'burning') processes which cause browning (and blackening) and are largely responsible for roast flavors. So what's the issue in brewing ? IMO 95+% of all malt flavor is produced in the maltsters kiln, and very little at the brewery. You can easily see why this is so - as the brewery rarely acheives temps above 100C(boiling) and the amounts of water in the mash & wort are far too high to get much reaction. Typical brewing produces virtually no additional malt flavor beyond that present in the malt. The exceptions is in the thick decoction boil where a little malt flavor is certanly formed, tho' even more caramel flavor. The picture with malts varieties is pretty clear-cut. All malts have some amount of malty-flavor and Maillard products. Light colored pale-ale malts and lager malts have relatively little. Caramel and crystal malts are processed in a way which creates more free sugars and at lower kiln temps so high levels of caramel flavor. Caramel & crystal do usually contain more malty flavor than many light malts, but their flavor is dominated by caramelized sugars which largley persist into the beer. Brown and black roast malts are first dried and then pyrrolized to produce dominant roast flavors - with chocolate malt there is at least some balance between roast and malty Maillard flavors. The malts which contain high levels of classic 'malt flavor' as their dominant feature are Vienna, Munich and Melanoidin malts. These are all processed in a way that makes the presence of free amino acids relatively high, and these are then kilned at temperatures and moisture levels than bring out the Maillard products. Vienna, Munich and Melanoidin are progressively darker and more flavorful versions; however there is a clear change in the flavor mix as the malt darkens. Vienna and most Munich malts have sufficient enzyme levels to self-convert. Brewers can damage and even lose the malt flavors present in their wort. Oxidation damage will reportedly damage malt flavor and I suspect that's the reason that extract malt flavor was so poor in the bad-old-days when I used extract. This situation with extract flavor seems to have improved in recent years based on other's beers I've tasted. Also some yeasts clearly enhance the malt character of beers while others seem to detract a bit.- read the descriptions or post a question and choose accordingly. Another factor in all-grain malt flavor is the sparge. Several amateur studies and my own experience show that late runnings detract from malt flavors of the wort and that removing the sparge(no sparge brewing), or at least limiting it improves malt flavor quite considerably. == As for practical advice .... there are some munich and vienna style malt extracts which would be my first suggestion for a nextract brewer. Some HB APA recipes use extremely high levels of vienna and munich malt, tho' I'd suggest you start with about 25% - 33% or so of vienna or munich replacing some pale extract. These malts (I don't know about extract) will provide some sweetness, so cut back on that crystal. Absolute crystal levels are certainly a matter of personal taste, but keep crystal malt extract levels in check. I find crystal/caramel malt levels above 10% can be oppressively heavy and sweet and 3% to 7% about right for a session beer. Another approach to capturing malt flavor without switching to all-grain brewing is partial-mash brewing. I'm no expert on the topic, but it seems to involve doing a mash temp cycles on a modest amount of malt in a mesh sack and is said to provide a significant flavor improvement. Al Kozonas wrote a very good book covering partial mash techniques a few years back. -SteveA Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 13 Feb 2005 18:59:44 -0500 From: Jim Liddil <jliddil at liddil.com> Subject: London Breweries/Pubs I am going to be in London and wanted to know about either pubs or breweries that might be worth while visiting. I won't have a car so anything that is not off the Tube won't be doable. Also looking for pubs with decent food. Jim Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 14 Feb 2005 12:55:57 +1030 From: "Greg 'groggy' Lehey" <grog at lemis.com> Subject: Re: Seefahrtsbier - curiouser and curiouser On Wednesday, 9 February 2005 at 5:17:33 +0000, bob.devine at att.net wrote: > Thanks to everyone who helped with my German translation or > looked for more information about the Seefahrtsbier style. > > Groggy discovered a link that described the beer as alcohol free > and he suggests that it might be akin to drinking wort. > Marty found some information that Seefahrtsbier is somehow > used to fight scurvy. Dr. Udo Kraushaar wrote directly to > me that he checked the Bremer Ratskeller but it turned out > that it is sells wine, not beer, and didn't know anything > about it. Darn. > > There are some inconsistencies in the story. What self-respecting > sailor would bother with a non-alcohol beer? One who is participating in a ceremony, I would assume. > Especially at what is presumably an important annual celebration? > It is conceivable that a very young beer would be used as a change > of pace, most other cultures use a non- or low-alcohol beer for > children and mothers (see malta). Young beers don't have significantly less alcohol, unless they have only just started fermenting. > And where does the anti-scurvy characteristic come from? Might > there be an adjunct to increase vitamin C? There certainly wouldn't be an adjunct in German beer. Some lactobacilli create vitamin C (think Sauerkraut), but it doesn't sound to me like that's the answer. My guess here is that there is no particular ascorbic function in the beer. How many people do you see with scurvy nowadays? > An uncommon German beer is/was brewed with a non-attenuative yeast. > The ludwigii yeast in a Ludwig Malz bier produces a sweet, malty > beer. Might this be the same? My guess is that the "beer" has changed completely since the days when it was a real beer, and that what we have now is just a quaint old tradition. Note that most North German beer types died out over 100 years ago when Bavaria forced their view of beer purity on the whole of Germany. Also, if the stuff was any good, they'd drink it more often than just once a year at a ceremony. Greg - -- Finger grog at lemis.com for PGP public key. See complete headers for address and phone numbers. Return to table of contents
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