HOMEBREW Digest #5320 Fri 11 April 2008

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  Future worldwide malt shortage? ("Cave, Jim")
  Re: Experimental Base (stencil)
  Agave syrup as a fermentable? ("David Banass")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Tue, 8 Apr 2008 08:20:36 -0700 From: "Cave, Jim" <Cave at psc.org> Subject: Future worldwide malt shortage? Yesterday, I drove from Calgary to Vancouver and decided to phone Gambrinus to see if I could pick up 4 bags of ESB malt ($26.20 Cdn/25 kg bag if you buy less than 20 bags). The manager said he'd wished I'd given them a bit more notice, but he phoned back and said they could provide me with 4 bags. I've been there several times before and they have been quite accommodating. I got into a discussion with the manager there, Mattias. He said that Gambrinus is running at full capacity and demand for their product is high. He indicated that worldwide demand for malt is increasing at 5% per annum and there are no new producers of malt coming on-line in the foreseeable future. The maltsters are just able to meet current demand for malt. He's expecting huge increases in malt prices in the coming years. I told him that I'm making a weizen in the next couple of weeks and he said that despite very high increases in wheat prices, there is huge demand for wheat malt. I've brewed side-by-side bitters (identical recipes): one with Beestons floor-malted Maris Otter and the other being made with Gambrinus ESB. The malt profiles of the two beers were virtually identical. I've looked at some of the homebrew shops on-line and found that they typically charge $80 US per 50 lb bag. Is this typical? Jim Cave Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 09 Apr 2008 14:26:56 -0400 From: stencil <etcs.ret at verizon.net> Subject: Re: Experimental Base It must be steam engine time. An article in last week's Science News < http://tinyurl.com/2ownvf > speaks of the increasing application of the scientific method in gastronomy. Most apropos of this thread is the quote, >Aiming to clean the culinary books for chefs to come, [Chef Herve] This >zeroed in on "culinary proverbs," tips included at the end of many recipes. >Many of these helpful hints have persisted for centuries without being tested, >This noted, such as advice to cut the heads off suckling pigs immediately >after taking them out of the oven to keep their skin crispy, or the assertion >that mayonnaise will fail if it is made by a woman who is menstruating. He >began collecting and testing these old wives' tales, and today he has more >than 25,000 in a database, about 100 of which have been explored in his labs. >From my own standpoint it's the negative data that would seem to be most valuable: "I used cheap'n'easy Procedure A and I employed tedious and expensive Procedure B and no one could taste any difference. So I'll keep on using B 'cause it's cool." stencil sends Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 11 Apr 2008 10:56:39 -0500 From: "David Banass" <dbanass at jhmetrology.com> Subject: Agave syrup as a fermentable? I was curious as if any ne ever tried Agave Syrup as a post boil fementable. I found this on the web wich describes the complexity of the sugar. "To produce organic agave syrup, juice is expressed from the core of the agave. The juice is then selected to become dark agave syrup or is filtered to create a light agave syrup. The unfiltered dark liquid contains many minerals and retains a natural and unique flavor, with a slight hint of a vanilla-like aroma. The light has the natural solids removed through a fine filtration process, creating a liquid that can be used in recipes that require a more neutral base that can be colored. As with the creation of all agave syrups, the light and dark liquids are then heated, causing thermic hydrolysis which breaks down the carbohydrates into sugars. The main carbohydrate is a complex form of fructose called inulin or fructosan. The filtered juice is concentrated to a syrup-like liquid a little thinner than honey. Fructose is a simple sugar found mainly in fruits and vegetables. Due to the predominance of fructose in ELF's agave syrup, our organic agave syrup is much sweeter than sucrose but has the same caloric value as sucrose (table sugar). Thus, a smaller amount yields the same sweetness but fewer calories than sucrose. This gives agave syrup advantages in both the food industry and the health of the consumer." Looks like an Imperial Vienna Lager might be in order! Independent Brewbakers Union Return to table of contents
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