HOMEBREW Digest #5080 Mon 30 October 2006

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  Yeast for Bottle Conditioning High Gravity Ales (Signalbox Brewery)
  Lallemand yeasts (Signalbox Brewery)
  attenuation ("Gordon Strong")
  RE: Pumpkin Ale (another question, no answers) (UNCLASSIFIED) ("Noah, Michael CIV USA IMA USAG-J OPW")
  Re: Yeast for Bottle Conditioning High Gravity Ales (Andrew Lavery)
  Attenuation calculation (Fred L Johnson)
  Attrnuation ("A.J deLange")
  Beer too thin (charri03)
  Unibroue yeast ("Spencer W. Thomas")
  no pumpkin in pumpkin ale? (Aaron Martin Linder)
  Split Rock HB Competition (hazan)
  RE: Pumpkin Ale ("Steve A. Smith")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Mon, 30 Oct 2006 05:21:53 +0000 From: Signalbox Brewery <signalbox.brewery at ntlworld.com> Subject: Yeast for Bottle Conditioning High Gravity Ales Rich Beecher asks about yeasts for re-seeding high gravity ales and is considering Nottingham and S-04. The alcohol tolerance of S-04 is somewhat lower than Nottingham (8% vs 11%-ish) I think so Nottingham would be the better bet of those two. Rich's understanding of the use of Champagne yeast for bottle conditioning is correct and it is standard UK practice. Now I got a panic stricken phone call from someone the other day whose Imperial Stout had only come down from 1090 to 1040. I suggested Champagne yeast which brought it down to 1018. This illustrates the general point that if re-seeding with a different yeast to that used in primary, it is wise to allow that yeast to ferment the sugars that it eats before bottling. It also illustrates that there may be a substantial change in the character of the beer so if by "high-gravity" you mean 8%, then Nottingham would be appropriate; if 14% it wouldn't. Can anybody pin down the boundaries a bit more closely? David Edge, Derby, UK Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 30 Oct 2006 05:24:17 +0000 From: Signalbox Brewery <signalbox.brewery at ntlworld.com> Subject: Lallemand yeasts In answering Rich's question about yeasts for bottling, I looked for the Lallemand data on ale yeasts, but it has gone from http :// consumer.lallemand.com/danstar-lalvin/danstar.html which is re-routed to lalvinyeast.com/ but that only mentions wine yeasts now. Does anyone know what has happened to their ale yeast range? David Edge, Derby UK Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 30 Oct 2006 00:29:23 -0500 From: "Gordon Strong" <strongg at speakeasy.net> Subject: attenuation > I'm still unsure what 75% attenuation means, or how > to calculate it. [...] Let us say that I have a beer with an O.G. > of 1.050 that ferments out to 1.010 F.G. What percent > attenuation does this represent? Let's assume you're all but the most pedantic. Then the answer is 80%, and is calculated by (50-10)/50. A 1.050 beer with 75% attenuation would have an FG of 1.0125 (calculated by [50 - (50 * 0.75) = 12.5]). This is Apparent Attenuation, which as it might sound, is what attenuation you get by just looking at your hydrometer readings. It's apparent as opposed to real since the FG has alcohol in it and alcohol has a lower SG than water. The calculation also uses gravity units (like Ray does in DGB) rather than degrees Plato. So it's an approximation. But it's the approximation most homebrewers use since you can calculate it so easily. When most homebrewers quote attenuation figures, this is what they're doing. So as long as you're using the same system as the rest of homebrewers, RDWHAHB. Well, just make sure your hydrometer is calibrated and be sure to use the temperature corrections based on your specific model if your samples aren't at the calibration temperature. But that's Hydrometer Reading 101. The only tricky bit if you aren't used to this method is in switching back and forth between specific gravities (e.g., 1.050) and gravity units (e.g., 50). Gordon Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 30 Oct 2006 15:58:37 +0900 From: "Noah, Michael CIV USA IMA USAG-J OPW" <Michael.D.Noah at us.army.mil> Subject: RE: Pumpkin Ale (another question, no answers) (UNCLASSIFIED) Classification: UNCLASSIFIED Caveats: NONE Personally, I gave up on the stuck mashes and the whole smelly, gooey pumpkin mess - now I don't use any pumpkin at all. I start with an American amber ale extract recipe (a Fat Tire clone), and then developed the spice bill. I use 2 tspns of cinnamon; 1 tspn each of allspice, nutmeg, fresh grated ginger root, and vanilla extract; and a pinch of clove, all added at the very end of the boil (right after turning off the gas). I don't tell anyone that there's no pumpkin in the mix, yet I still get rave reviews on how good the pumpkin tastes - maybe my critics are just idiots, but that's OK - they don't have to clean up the mess! Homebrewing in Okinawa Michael Classification: UNCLASSIFIED Caveats: NONE Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 30 Oct 2006 18:38:09 +1100 From: Andrew Lavery <alavery at iprimus.com.au> Subject: Re: Yeast for Bottle Conditioning High Gravity Ales Rich Beecher wrote: > I have, in the past, had a fair amount of trouble in getting high > gravity ales to carbonate in the bottle. I now recognize the need to add > fresh yeast along with the sugars. > I usually use S04, Windsor, or Nottingham for primary fermentation. The > ales are usually 8 to 11% ABV. > Will fresh doses of S04 or Nottingham be ok > Rich, I have also found S04 will not bottle condition over about 6% ABV. I have recently switched to T58 for bottle conditioning (about 1 gram in 20 litres) and it has worked a treat (up to 9% so far). Cheers, Andrew. Ballarat, Victoria, Australia. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 30 Oct 2006 07:01:00 -0500 From: Fred L Johnson <FLJohnson52 at nc.rr.com> Subject: Attenuation calculation Christopher asks about calculation of attenuation: Attenuation is a general term that means the reduction in strength or amount of something. In brewing it is generally expressed as percent attenuation, meaning the percentage of the substance disappears, in this case the specific gravity. In the example you gave, the gravity of the wort is 1.0500 g/mL. This is largely due to sugars dissolved in the water. This specific gravity is to be compared to pure water, which has a gravity of close to 1.0000 g/mL, depending upon the temperature. (I have intentionally added more decimal places to make a point later. Hey, some folks h) If the yeast reduce the sugar content (attenuate) the wort such that the gravity is reduced to 1.0100, then they have attenuated this (dropping the units) (1.0500-1.0100) / (1.0500-1.0000), or 0.0400 / 0.0500, or 0.8, or 80%. I have intentionally not taken into account the fact that what we are measuring is APPARENT attenuation and I have intentionally overlooked the fact that the production of alcohol significantly reduces the specific gravity of the beer. (The specific gravity of ethanol is 0.79, not 1.0 like water.) Consequently, the specific gravity of fermented beer is not purely due to the attenuation of sugar; hence the phrase APPARENT attenuation. A more in-depth description of how the presence of ethanol is accounted for and how REAL attenuation is measured would require significantly more time.) Many folks tend to forget that the specific gravity they are expressing is in units of grams per milliliter (g/mL) and is in comparison to water. They drop the proper expression of the specific gravity when they talk about it and in their calculations and simply say something like, "You have 50 units to start with and end up with 10. So: (50-10)/50 =80%. This type of shorthand leads to a lot of misstatements, miscalculations, and misunderstandings--statements like, "I have a gravity of ten-fifty (1050)", which can confuse and lead the less knowledgeable astray. How would these folks express a specific gravity of 1.0523 g/mL? Hope this helps. Fred L Johnson Apex, North Carolina, USA Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 30 Oct 2006 12:21:18 +0000 From: "A.J deLange" <ajdel at cox.net> Subject: Attrnuation Attenuation is a measure of the amount of extract consumed by the yeast and so the formula is Att = 100*(OE - FE)/OE where the numbers are values of extract concentration - not specific gravity. OE is the original extract and FE the final extract. A wort of original gravity (OG) 1.079 contains 19.105 grams of extract per 100 grams of wort (it is said to be 19.105 degrees Plato). A beer of specific gravity 1.014 contains 3.573 grams of APPARENT extract per 100 grams of beer (it's 3.573 Plato) so the APPARENT attenuation is (19.105 - 3.573)/19.105 = 0.813 or 81.3%. Now notice that 14/4 = 3.5 and 79/4 = 19.75 which demonstrates that the Plato values are approximated by dividing the "points" by 4. Thus an approximation to the apparent attenuation can be had by dividing the points drop by the OG points. For this example: (79 - 14)/79 = 0.823 or 82.3% which is pretty close to the actual answer. To this point we're talking about the "Apparent Degree of Fermentation" (ADF) or "Apparent Degree of Attenuation" (ADA). The true attenuation is often called the "Real Degree of Ferementation" (RDF). It uses the same formula except that the FE is the "true extract". This is measured by taking a volume of beer, evaporating it down to 1/3 its volume (over a water bath or, more usually, during the distillation used to determine the alcolhol content) then restoring to the original sample volume with distilled water. In doing this the alcohol has been removed and what is left is a solution which contains nothing but the remaining extract and water. This is tested with a hydrometer (or the density determined by other means) and the reading converted to Plato to give the extract which is used in the formula. For purposes of homebrewing it is adequate to use the 4 "points" of specific gravity per Plato degree approximation so that, for example, a 1.050 wort fermenting down to 1.010 would be said to have acheived 80% ADF. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 30 Oct 2006 08:46:30 -0500 (EST) From: <charri03 at fiu.edu> Subject: Beer too thin Hey all; I'm an home brewer who has about half a dozen or so all-grain batches under my belt. Now, one thing that has been a constant in my all grain experience is that my beers have all been rather thin and dry. For a rye beer maybe that's fine, but not for a porter! I use Jack Schmidling's kettle mashing method and I get about a 70% eff on average (I'm ok with this). What I'm not ok with is this thin, bone-dry beer! I think my problem may be the fact that, according to Jack, the entire grain bill should be added to the kettle, then the water, then the temp cranked up. His logic is that you will hit the "magic" temps associated with a step mash. I own an electric stove that heats very slowly, so I think that I am possibly getting temps in the 115-130 F range for too long, thus making my beer insipid (maybe a harsh word, it's not THAT bad). Does this make sense? Maybe I should heat the water to temp THEN add the grain? If I do this should I heat beyond the 152-158 F range to compensate for the grain addition? Like maybe 170 F then add the grain. Kind of a crap shoot no? I DON'T want to have to buy more equipment! What do you all think? Thanks, -Chad Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 30 Oct 2006 08:48:52 -0500 From: "Spencer W. Thomas" <hbd at spencerwthomas.com> Subject: Unibroue yeast Assuming that this yeast is the one used for Fin de Monde, the thick yeast cap is what I would expect. I've never seen it "stop" fermentation, though. What measure are you using to determine that fermentation has "stopped"? If it's that the bubbling has stopped, I suspect that the cap is holding some CO2, but that if you leave it alone, it will restart on its own. The "goes like crazy" comment reinforces this belief for me -- it goes like crazy because the yeast cap has trapped CO2, and when you stir it, you liberate that CO2 back into the wort, and it comes out rapidly, "like crazy", for a little while. But really, the fermentation is proceeding just fine, it's only your perception of it that is inconsistent. I used this yeast to make a strong blond ale that went from 1.080 to 1.010 in less than a week, so it's a good, hard-working yeast for those high-gravity Belgian-style ales. The beer finished at 1.008 (yes, there was some sugar in the wort), and never tasted "hot". It had that sneaky alcohol that its parent beer has. So, RDWHAHB. The yeast is doing what the yeast does. =Spencer in Ann Arbor, MI Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 30 Oct 2006 10:40:29 -0500 (EST) From: Aaron Martin Linder <lindera at umich.edu> Subject: no pumpkin in pumpkin ale? My initial reaction after one batch (last year) is to agree with John Campbell. I tried adding a few pounds of nicely baked, browned, mashed pumpkin to the boil of an extract brew last year and found the resulting beer to be good, but i didn't like the vegetable flavor it had. I would only try using pumpkin in the mash from now on. you might think i was an idiot for trying it in the boil instead of a mash, but i found a somewhat reputable website saying it was a good way to make pumpkin ale. maybe canned pumpkin would taste better than fresh? maybe most vegetables don't have much place in a good-tasting beer? i think this year i'll just try making a spiced ale. the only question is whether i can call it a pumpkin ale if it contains no pumpkin. i like the idea of pumpkin but not the flavor(in beer)! aaron linder A^2 MI > > Date: Sat, 28 Oct 2006 07:10:24 -0500 > From: "John Campbell" <johncampbell at comcast.net> > Subject: Pumpkin ale > > > The secret to good pumpkin ale is not to use any pumpkin, just the spices. > Anyone I have ever known that used pumpkin in any quantity always had > serious taste issues, among other problems. > > This of course I is just my opinion and ymmv, but I think that you will get > a number of responses from the poor souls that have used pumpkin to make > beer. > > This is not to say I am trying to dissuade you, as I believe the very heart > of home brewing is all about experimentation, lets just say I encourage you > to make a small pilot batch before you commit a lot of resources to it. > > Cyserman > Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 30 Oct 2006 15:50:47 -0000 From: <hazan at ptd.net> Subject: Split Rock HB Competition This is the final announcement for the homebrew competition to be held on Saturday, November 18th, at the Split Rock Resort in Pennsylvania's Pocono Mountains, which is held in conjunction with their annual Micro Brew Festival. This is a sanctioned competition judging all beer, mead and cider styles. Entries should be shipped to the Resort at Split Rock, One Lake Drive, Lake Harmony, PA 18624, Attention: Shelly Kalins Lutz, for receipt from November 6 to November 17. Entry fees of $5 per entry, will be donated to the Make-A-Wish Foundation. By simply entering, you will be helping this charitable organization help others. Checks should be made out to The Resort At Split Rock. Two (2) brown or green bottles with no markings are required. Please use rubber bands to attach bottle labels. No tape please. Any standard entry forms identifying the brewer and the appropriate entry category/subcategory are acceptable. The 2004 BJCP Style Guidelines will be used for this competition. Get this from the BJCP web site at www.bjcp.org. Judges are still very much needed and they should contact me to secure a position. Judges and Stewards can hand carry their entries if they pre- register with payment. All judges and stewards are required to be present by 8:30 so we can get started promptly at 9am. Judges will receive an entry to the beer festival or entry to the beer dinner for their efforts and need to indicate which they wish when they commit to participate. The BOS winner will receive a complementary weekend for two at next year's Split Rock Beer Fest as well. More information will be available at the Split Rock web site: http://www.splitrockresort.com/beerfest/. Or contact them at: spevents at splitrockresort.com. Al Hazan Competition Organizer hazan at ptd.net Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 30 Oct 2006 19:12:03 -0500 From: "Steve A. Smith" <sasmith11 at verizon.net> Subject: RE: Pumpkin Ale Darrell, a couple years ago I created a partial mash recipe based on the partial mash kit recipe sold by Hearts Homebrew, stated as derived from a Thomas Jefferson recipe, and found at http://www.heartshomebrew.com However, I used 6 lbs.of 2-row, one pound of Crystal 55L and 3 lbs of light DME and came out with an OG of 1.059. Assuming 75% efficiency, Promash tells me those additions minus pumpkin would only get me to 1.051 so I think the pumpkin did contribute a sugar addition. I mashed eight pounds of roasted pumpkin with the grains and had to scrape the bottom of a zapap setup (bucket with many holes in another bucket) to get the first runoff... my notes don't mention how the sparge went, nor do I recall. I recommend switching the oven racks around at least once when baking the pumpkin, so the bottom doesn't burn, and you can easily scrape the pumpkin meat from the outer skin after it's done baking. And next time I would go all-grain, and mash 90 minutes instead of just 60 minutes. >From my research I've culled that folks seem to have better results by baking the pumpkin and then including it in the mash, and based on my experience I recommend using rice hulls. And as "Cyserman" responded in this thread, sounds like it's best to leave pumpkin completely out of all-extract recipes. My version was a tasty and very drinkable beer but oddly did not have a strong definitively pumpkin-y flavor, maybe in part because I skimped too much on the spices. It was not imposingly vegetable-y, or have any noticeable off flavors. I would like to try again, possibly something like the recipe in the Jay's Brewing Newsletter at http://www.jaysbrewing.com/2005-09.pdf Return to table of contents
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