HOMEBREW Digest #5423 Sun 28 September 2008

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  Re: R.O mashing ("Jason Gazeley")
  What makes the reddest Red Beer? ("A.J deLange")
  Intro with questions ("Shane A. Saylor")
  Ulm, Germany (Kevin Mueller)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Fri, 26 Sep 2008 21:34:55 -0600 From: "Jason Gazeley" <jason.gazeley at gmail.com> Subject: Re: R.O mashing >But if you say that your pH is always perfect, are you brewing only >one color range of beer. When using R.O. water with very dark beers, >for example, you will still have to correct the pH of the mash with >some carbonate additions. >Kai Most of the beers I have done since swiching to R.O water have been below 16 SRM. The last beer I did was an American Brown Ale at 20 SRM. I did notice a slight drop in pH but we are talking about the difference between maybe 5.3 down to 5.1. When should I worry? 5.0? 4.9? Or is 5.1 too low and 5.3 too high? Cheers, Jason - -- Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 27 Sep 2008 11:15:05 -0400 From: "A.J deLange" <ajdel at cox.net> Subject: What makes the reddest Red Beer? The answer is anything that makes the beer "dark". All beer is inherently red because its optical absorption is high at short wavelengths (blues) and low at long (red). Look at a light source through a long enough path of Miller Light and you will see red. Shine a flashlight through Guiness stout and you will see red. The red color of beer come from melanoidins produced in the kilning, mashing and boiling processes. The concentrations of the different melanoidins determine the depth of the color of the beer and, what is most interesting, they appear to be in constant relative proportion to one another irrespective of the beer type. So it turns out that to an astonishing degree of accuracy one can determine the 1 cm absorption (-logarithm of the transmission) spectrum of any beer (lambics, etc. excluded) from A(lambda) = SRM*[0.022798*exp( (430 - lambda)/17.268) + 0.97901*exp( (430 - lambda)/81.87) ]/12.7 where lambda is the wavelength (between 380 and 780 nm). If you play with this a little you'll easily see the dramatic effect path length and SRM have on color. Consider a 12.7 SRM beer. A(430) = 1 (at the blue end) meaning that 10% of blue light passes through 1 cm of the beer. A(780) = 0.0224 (at the red end) meaning that 95% of red light passes through 1 cm. Now double either the path (to 2 cm) or the SRM (to 25.4). This doubles the absorption at every wavelength. At 430 the absorption is now 2 meaning only 1% of the light gets through while at the red end A(780) = 0.0450 meaning that 90% of the red light passes through. The blue light throughput has been reduced by a factor of ten whereas the red light throughput has been reduced by a factor of only 5%. These are the extremes but the principal applies at all other wavelengths. Those of you that have my spreadsheet can look at R, G and B numbers as you tweak SRM and path (and illuminant). Now the other side of the coin is that whenever you increase SRM or path the beer looks darker. Guiness, for example, looks black though it is actually very pure red. So adding too much dark malt will get you so far into the red that you can't see any color at all and so I suspect that the secret to getting a red beer is to add enough dark malts to suppress the blue-green part of the spectrum but not so much that so little light comes through that the color can't be seen. So making it darker up to a point is, in general, the way to get a redder beer. But not all beers follow the model above closely (in fact none follow it exactly) with raspberry and cherry lambics being obvious examples. The function of the Spectral Deviation Coefficients, which I have been talking about for the past couple of years and whose name suggests what they do, is to quantify how much and in what way a particular beer spectrum deviates from the model. At this point I don't know how to interpret them in detail but a cursory look shows that most beers have a first SDC between -0.5 and +0.5 while clearly redder than normal beers, such as the lambics mentioned, have first coefficients greater than 1. Thus we might tentatively surmise that anything which raised the first SDC might result in a redder than average beer for a given SRM. I have seen it said that beers brewed with highly carbonate waters are red. I recently brewed identical (to the extent that I could make them so) ales with the exception that the water in one case was my moderately alkaline (62 ppm as CaCO3) water and in the other the water was synthetic Burton water with an alkalinity of about 182. The beers came in at 12.9 (Burton) and 10.1 (well) SRM with the first SDCs being 0.72 for the Burtonized water and 0.33 for the well water. If you are willing to draw a conclusion from a single observation like this one you might try higher bicarbonate in the mash (recognizing the problems that high alkalinity brings). - A.J. Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 27 Sep 2008 18:34:03 -0400 From: "Shane A. Saylor" <taliesin2 at verizon.net> Subject: Intro with questions Greetings! I was subscribed to the list about 5 yrs. ago. And I'm just getting re-interested in homebrewing again. I tried once before. Screwed it up ; gave up. Now I want to try again. I'm 38 yrs. old, live in N.Virginia and want to try to brew my own. Now onto the questions: 1. Are there any reputable homebrew retailers online? I have tried to search for local shops using Yahoo! Yellow Pages, no dice. 2. Homebrew kits: Do you prefer True Brew or Mr Beer? 3. Homebrew kits or a custom job (do-it-yourself)??? 4. I had bought several books on homebrewing. In five years has any of them been updated? Should I by the updated ones? Why? 5. Do you know of any good resources on the web that has videos or sales dvd's about homebrewing. Does YouTube have any decent homebrew videos? Thanks... Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 28 Sep 2008 18:29:27 -0700 (PDT) From: Kevin Mueller <kmmuellr at yahoo.com> Subject: Ulm, Germany I'm heading to Ulm, Germany for business on 10/13-17. Can anyone suggest local beers that I should try to get my hands on? Thanks! Kevin Plymouth, MI Return to table of contents
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