HOMEBREW Digest #503 Tue 25 September 1990

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		Rob Gardner, Digest Coordinator

  Re: the evolution of taste (long) (Chris Shenton)
  yeast recommendations? (cckweiss)
  Re: the evolution of taste (John Polstra)
  Re: M&F Yeast Question (John Polstra)
  Cornelius kegs (Mark Montgomery)
  The de-evolution of taste (short); First all-grain recipe (Ken Giles  at  Context x475)
  Germany and the national drink (florianb)
  Used kegs for sale (Ken Ellinwood)
  Citizens for a Trub-Free America (Martin A. Lodahl)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Mon, 24 Sep 90 10:49:56 EDT From: Chris Shenton <chris at asylum.gsfc.nasa.gov> Subject: Re: the evolution of taste (long) In HBD#502, Florian expressed dissatisfaction with the quality/price ratio of microbeers. I have to agree, with a caveat. Here on the Right Coast, there is not nearly the selection you guys/gals have on the Left. There are a few, however, and most seem to have problems, usually (IMHO) in the areas of balance, smoothness, and body. Around DC, these are the accused: - British Brewing Company MD Oxford Class - Cambridge Brewing MD Wild Goose - Baltimore Brewing Co MD 3 pub brews - Sisson's MD pub brews - Dominion Brewing VA Dominion lager (?) (Old Heurich (DC) doesn't count -- it's contract brewed in PA). Notable exceptions (IMHO again) are: - Virginia Brewing VA Gold Cup and Dark Horse Both are rich, smooth, well-balanced, and very tasty beers -- highly hopped. (Sounds like the description of the Hamburg style pils given by Norm Hardy in HBD#502). The difference here may be that the brewmaster got his 5 year degree in brewing science Germany. Florian also complains about getting headaches from some of the microbrews. Yes, yes -- I must concur. I notice it especially with Oxford Class and Wild Goose. I haven't swilled enough of the others to tell, but I've consumed prodigious quanties of the Gold Cup with no ill effects whatsoever. What's the difference? I dunno. I have to admit to consuming too much Bud and its ilk, and the morning after was not pleasant. It does not, however, compare to the excruciating agony caused by Oxford or Goose. The effects of those compare to (or exceed) the aftermath of consuming too much Old Milwaulkee or Magnum (gasp) from the corner store. So now Florian's a Bud-man; he says it's good, clean beer, and it doesn't give him headaches. Hummm, I suppose I can't argue with that too much. My aforementioned caveat is that it has little taste: I enjoy microbeer because it *is* tasty, but I now know enough now to avoid drinking more than a couple Oxford/Goose. (The discussion of quality, lack-of-taste, technical excellence, etc of Bud has been discussed here before and need not be repeated.) Fortunately, my favorite local liquor store provides an alternative. For the price of a case of Bud, I can usually get a case something interesting (I think the importer/distributor is local which keeps the price reasonable). Recently it's been Peters and Three Horses (Holland) and Heileman's beers. I guess in summary, I enjoy drinking microbrews because of the variety of taste, but they have a long way to go in terms of quality/professionalism. Some are merely disappointing while others are worth avoiding. A few are downright excellent, however, and should be encouraged. PS: I just tried Widmer's Weizen, and no, while it wasn't (IMHO) much of a German wheat beer, it was not bad. Care to send me your Weizen recipe, Florian? (Muenchener oder Berliner Art? Danke!) Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 24 Sep 90 09:27:56 -0700 From: cckweiss at castor.ucdavis.edu Subject: yeast recommendations? I've made my last four batches of beer with liquid yeast, and been real happy with the result. However, with a 2 year old in the house, sometimes brewing is best done when the opportunity presents itself -- I can't always plan on having time to smack the pack, wait, pitch the starter, wait, and finally brew. The other problem with liquid yeast is local availablilty. I went to R&R Fermentation supplies on Saturday, and found only 4 packets of ale yeast. Two of those were German Wheat, so I'm trying London Ale and European Ale yeasts, instead of the Irish Ale I wanted. So, my question for the group is: Are there any *GOOD* dry yeasts available? I'm mostly interested in ale yeast, as I don't have a lagering refrigerator, and my basement doesn't get much below 50 degrees, even in January. And by the way, Florian, I bet you were the kind of kid who threw rocks at hornets' nests, just to see what happened... I'm kind of partial to Blitz-Weinhard myself. How could anyone dislike a beer called Blitz?? Ken Weiss cckweiss at castor.ucdavis.edu Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 24 Sep 90 09:19:39 PDT From: polstra!jdp at uunet.UU.NET (John Polstra) Subject: Re: the evolution of taste Pursuing Florian's remarks on "the evolution of taste" (HBD #502) ... > Then I went to a different pub in Corvallis, had a pint of Widmer > Weizen (the bartender stuck a lemon in it), and then another, and came > to the conclusion that it hardly resembled the weizen beers I had in > Germany ... Absolutely right! Most US weizen beers can *not* be called authentic. They don't use enough wheat (50% - 60% is used in Bavaria), and they use the *WRONG* kind of yeast. If it's not *wildly* estery with a clove-like aroma, it's *not* a weizen. > They claim that the Pacific Northwest water is "perfect for brewing > ales." In truth, it's perfect for nothing. It contains very little > minerals. I can corroborate that with respect to the Seattle area. I got a water analysis last May from the water department. Here are the concentrations of important brewing ions (in parts per million) in Seattle and a few other major brewing cities: Ca++ Mg++ C03-- Cl- SO4-- Na+ Seattle 9 1 18 4 3 2 Pilsen 7 2 15 5 5 2 Burton 306 42 ? 26 725 54 Dublin 118 4 ? 19 54 12 London 52 16 156 ? 77 99 (Except for Seattle, the figures come from various homebrewing references, not all of which agree 100%. But you get the idea.) I leave as an exercise for the reader the question of which city is most closely matched by Seattle. Hint: they don't make ales there. Actually, Florian's statement "it's perfect for nothing" isn't quite true. It's great for Pilsners. (Oops, there I gave it away.) If you're making ales in Seattle (especially if you're mashing), you at least want to add something to bring the calcium up to 50-100 PPM. > [ Various semi-positive remarks about Budweiser ] Yeah, I have to agree. It really came home to me recently. Just after he returned from his trip to Germany, Norm Hardy (whom you see in this forum from time to time) treated a few of us to a tasting of some beers he brought back with him. Almost as a joke, we tasted US Budweiser side-by-side with Czechoslovakian Budweiser (the *real* Budweiser, a.k.a. Budvar). Now, we all liked the Budvar better, because it suited our tastes better. But we had to admit that the US Bud is a finely crafted, delicately brewed beer. It's *extremely* light by our standards, but judged in its proper category (which is not Continental Pilsner), Bud is a super beer. John Polstra jdp at polstra.uucp Polstra & Co., Inc. polstra!jdp at uunet.uu.net Seattle, Washington USA ...!uunet!polstra!jdp (206) 932-6482 Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 24 Sep 90 09:27:53 PDT From: polstra!jdp at uunet.UU.NET (John Polstra) Subject: Re: M&F Yeast Question In HBD #502, Jim Griggers <brew at ncrmud> writes: > If you have used Wyeast #1338, and have fermented at high temperatures, > how long did the fermentation take? The last time I used it, the room > temp was around 65 and the beer stayed in the secondary for about 1 > month. I had the same experience with that yeast. It was around 68 F when I used it, and the fermentation just went on and on and on. But, what a wonderful yeast! It produces a lovely smooth malty flavor that I've never matched with any other yeast. Perfect for that rich, dark Christmas ale that you've been thinking about starting soon. John Polstra jdp at polstra.uucp Polstra & Co., Inc. polstra!jdp at uunet.uu.net Seattle, Washington USA ...!uunet!polstra!jdp (206) 932-6482 Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 24 Sep 90 10:38:20 PDT From: ncpmont at brahms.AMD.COM (Mark Montgomery) Subject: Cornelius kegs *** This posting will only be of interest to those of you in *** *** the Sunnyvale or Santa Clara, CA area who are looking for *** *** new Cornelius kegs.. my apologies to others, skip forward *** After the barrage of 'kegging' info in the HBD and Rec. food.drink I decided to try and find a cheap source of used 'C' kegs to embark upon a switch to kegging as opposed to bottling. I was unsuccessful in that the only sources I found wanted to sell me a (ab)used keg (and I mean it looked like they had been run over by an Abrahams tank) for about $40.00. After much calling around I found a distributor that wanted to get rid of an overstock of brand new Cornelius Kegs ("Super Champion" model, 5 gal., ball lock) for $55.00/each. The "Super Champion" is much nicer than the "Sparton" model that is usually found as it has a round rubber base that makes it much more stable than the 'star' type and it also has a rubber ring type top w/ two handle holes that protect the fittings from damage in falls and clobbers (much like a "Bud" keg). I picked one up today and it is indeed brand-new and as described. I plan on going back next payday and picking up a few more and would like to extend the offer to others nearby that are interested. If you are near Sunnyvale or Santa Clara and would like me to pick up a keg for you then contact me via e-mail (ncpmont at amd.com) or give me a call at work ((408)749-3445) to discuss logistics. I have to drive ~50 miles roundtrip to get them so I will charge $55.00 + tax + $1.00 for gas for a rounded off total of $60.00 delivered to you in S.C., or Sunnyvale area (or you can come by work to pick-up). I will need to be paid ahead of time but you needn't worry, I,ve been at the same job for eight years and lived at the same address for 15. I'm not very hard to find. Regards, Mark Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 24 Sep 90 10:04:30 PDT From: keng at apd.MENTOR.COM (Ken Giles at Context x475) Subject: The de-evolution of taste (short); First all-grain recipe To Florian: Florian I've always been amazed by your contempt for micro-breweries, but I share your concern about their attempts to profit from marketing hype rather than quality products. Today, I consider myself lucky to have them around. Maybe after I brew and consume my first all-grain batch (brewing Saturday), I'll feel more like you do. I come from Florida, where all four beers in each brew-pub taste identical, and I lived awhile in Alabama, where brew-pubs were illegal. Now I'm in Portland, Oregon and surely am enjoying the local beer. Last Friday, I drank three pints of micro-brew with no following headache. No Weizen, though. One was Bridgeport Summer Wheat, instead. Then again, I don't have a need to have authentic weizen, since I've never had one. The Friday before that, I drank three Budweizers (at a company function, only choice) and had a headache that night. Please don't think your comments have offended me. This has not been a flame, but just another beer drinker's point of view. P.S. Let's have a beer together some time. To the Digest (you too, Florian): I'll be brewing my first all-grain batch on Saturday and am casting about for a recipe that's simple, makes a good pale ale, and lets me concentrate on the mashing process. I'd like to attempt a single-step infusion with English malt unless you'd like convince me otherwise. My mash/lauter tun is a picnic cooler with a copper tubing false-bottom. I have Papazian's and Miller's book if you'd prefer to point me to a recipe in one of those. A specific question about all-grain brewing is: Would it ever make sense to use crystal malt in a mash? Wouldn't the enzymes convert all the residual unfermentables and render it ordinary? I use crystal pretty often in my extract recipes and am wondering if I should continue to steep it before the boil even when mashing. Is there an all-grain equivalent to increasing a extract beer's body with crystal? Am I missing the obvious? kg. Return to table of contents
Date: 24 Sep 90 12:58:03 PDT (Mon) From: florianb at tekred.cna.tek.com Subject: Germany and the national drink Fred Condo says, >So... GERMANY, land where beer is the national drink. I would like to hear Not to be picky, but... I'm not sure what national drink means. But if it means the liquid most consumed by the nation, then for Germany, it is coffee. The amount of coffee consumed by Germans (at least West Germans) exceeds even the 1 liter per person per day amount of beer consumption. In the US, I understand, it is milk. Does anyone know for certain if there exists a country whose national drink is beer? He goes on to say: >Barring that, I would like to hear from anyone who's been there or from anyone >who can tell me what beer-producing locales I absolutely must not miss. Well, everyone knows about Munich. But Stuttgart hardly ever gets the publicity it deserves. Swabish beer is unlike any other beer in the world. It is dry, strong, and the Swabish beer is *bitter*. Swaben Brau Pils, for example has a bitterness level that is so extreme, it is probably around 50 HBU's (per 5 gal). Stuttgart, "the Big Little Village", can also be enjoyed for its sporting of the Porsche, the Mercedes, and one of the world's best Ballets. The Alpirsbacher Klosterbrau Pils is, in my humblest opinion, the best German Pils (it comes from the Black Forest). And here I sit...Alas. Florian Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 24 Sep 90 16:40:12 PDT From: aimla!diamond!ken at suntzu.West.Sun.COM (Ken Ellinwood) Subject: Used kegs for sale I have a friend who wants to sell his two used 5 gallon pin-type kegs. If anyone in the Los Angeles area is interested, give me a call and I will put you in touch with the owner of these two fine kegs. - Ken Ellinwood - (213) 444-6554 (days) Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 24 Sep 90 10:09:40 PDT From: Martin A. Lodahl <pbmoss!malodah at PacBell.COM> Subject: Citizens for a Trub-Free America In HOMEBREW Digest #502, Chuck Coronella discovered the cold break, and asked of this august assemblage: > ... how will this beer be different than my previous batches? > Will this be my first "crystal clear" batch of beer, or will it > taste better? The sages & pundits insist that it will taste better, and my own experience tends to bear this out. The presence of trub in the primary fermentor seems to change the chemistry of the ferment enough to produce noticeable quantities of fusel alcohols, among other products. This seems especially true when fermentation takes place at temperatures over 75 degrees, with most of the yeasts I've used. Most of the batches I've been proudest of had the trub removed before pitching. There must always be an exception, however: last January I made a batch of IPA, and discovered the coolant pump I was using was totally inadequate. I gave up and pitched at about 80F, planning to rack to another carboy in a day or so. A job emergency, a death in the family, and the worst snowstorm in a century conspired to keep that IPA sitting on its trub in the primary for nearly 2 months. To date, it's the best beer I've ever made. Any conclusions drawn from this are strictly at your own risk. > You know, one of the best parts of this hobby is that there's always > something else to learn (at least so far.) AMEN! = Martin A. Lodahl Pac*Bell Minicomputer Operations Support Staff = = malodah at pbmoss.Pacbell.COM Sacramento, CA 916.972.4821 = = If it's good for ancient Druids, runnin' nekkid through the wuids, = = Drinkin' strange fermented fluids, it's good enough for me! 8-) = Return to table of contents
End of HOMEBREW Digest #503, 09/25/90 ************************************* -------
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