HOMEBREW Digest #813 Thu 30 January 1992

Digest #812 Digest #814

		Rob Gardner, Digest Coordinator

  botulism question... (David Christian Homan)
  Malty tasting beer (Tom Santos)
  Re: Homebrew Digest #812 (January 29, 1992) (Janet_L._Hunt.Wbst139)
  Be wary of CAMRA Canada (Mike Jewison - DDO)
  RS lager (Russ Gelinas)
  How I force carbonate (long) (key)
  how long does it take to force-carbonate a keg? (Tony Babinec)
  CO2 & Kegging (Bob Jones)
  Re: To Blow-off or Not? (John DeCarlo)
  Beer Delivery (Tom Quinn 5-4291)
  re NA beer (Chip Hitchcock)
  Hot idea on hot knives  (Jay Hersh)
  Stainless Coupling (C.R. Saikley)
  Re:  ss spigot (Brew Free or Die!  29-Jan-1992 1532)
  Expensive beer (korz)
  Sanitizing with Bleach (Bob Jones)
  Wyeast seams (korz)
  GABF Claims (John_Zettler.ADFMcLean_CSD)
  Slow starting yeast. (kbrunell)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1992 03:50:32 -0500 (EST) From: David Christian Homan <dh10+ at andrew.cmu.edu> Subject: botulism question... Sorry - But I can't remember... What was the original context of the botulism question? Is it possible to have infected homebrew? /************************************************************/ * David Homan | Gonzo Programming - * * 616 Summerlea St. | the trend of the 90's * * (412)661-4428 | that will make Hunter * * | S. Thompson proud... * * | * * <dhoman+ at cs.cmu.edu> | (Pick one - they all go * * <dhoman+ at cmu.edu> | to the same place in * * <dh10+ at andrew.cmu.edu> | long run, anyways...) * /************************************************************/ Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1992 01:04:28 -0800 From: bbs.metalmac at tsoft.sf-bay.org (Tom Santos) Subject: Malty tasting beer I just recently opened my most recent batch of beer and it seemed to taste very "malty". My last batch tasted too malty too... Is there any way to avoid the "malty" taste? Thanks, Tom - -- Tom Santos (bbs.metalmac at tsoft.sf-bay.org) Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1992 04:50:33 PST From: Janet_L._Hunt.Wbst139 at xerox.com Subject: Re: Homebrew Digest #812 (January 29, 1992) Would the owner of this DL please remove me from Homebrew Digest. I`ve tried and simply have had no luck. Thank you in advance Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 92 08:41:12 EST From: Mike Jewison - DDO <jewison at centaur.astro.utoronto.ca> Subject: Be wary of CAMRA Canada A few weeks back someone (I forget who) suggested joining CAMRA Canada rather than sending off a credit card authorization to CAMRA (UK) for 14 pounds. This may make sense for any digest readers living in North America, but I would suggest you be wary of CAMRA Canada. I sent them a cheque for Cdn$18 in September 1990 and have not received a thing from them; no "What's Brewing", no "thank you for joining CAMRA Canada", no nothing except for the fact that my cheque cleared the bank shortly after I mailed it in. I have written several letters to them to try and figure out what happened and why I haven't received ANYTHING from them, but they won't even do me the courtesy of replying to my letters. So I've basically kissed my $18 goodbye. This leaves me feeling somewhat awkward. On the one hand, I do endorse many of the aims of CAMRA, but on the other hand I have the feeling that I've been taken by a bunch of swift-talking con artists who have fed into my emotions on the subject of big-brewery commercial beer. All this, of course, IMHO. - Mike Jewison David Dunlap Observatory University of Toronto jewison at centaur.astro.utoronto.ca *** DISCLAIMER: I'm not an astronomer, but I play one on TV. *** Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1992 9:50:43 -0500 (EST) From: R_GELINAS at UNHH.UNH.EDU (Russ Gelinas) Subject: RS lager I guess one man's clean is another man's dirt, or something like that. Chip H. took exception to my "clarification" of Red Star lager yeast as "clean". Ok, so it's full of contaminants. Agreed. But the *yeast* itself will ferment cleanly, as demonstrated by your single-cell tasting. This is in contrast to Red Star ale (also full of contaminants, I would guess), the *yeast* of which has a "dirty" ferment. My point was that I would never use Red Star ale; it's lousy and there are a lot of other choices, but I do use Red Star lager. I've found Vierka to be worse (when I could get it to ferment at all), liquid is expensive and not always available, and my lagers are not light, so I don't notice the fermentation flaws. Liquid or single-cell yeasts are definitely better, especially for lighter lagers, but still I submit that Red Star lager yeast is ok, not great, not lousy, but just plain ok. Ok? Russ Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 92 11:53:42 EST From: key at cs.utk.edu Subject: How I force carbonate (long) In HBD #812, Mark Nevar says: > I have the above mentioned chart in my hot little hands right now. > In the past, I have force-carbonated mostly by luck, but I figured > this chart would take the guesswork out of it. Well, I have a question. > There is no mention of time anywhere. I've been fielding a lot of E-mail about technique, so I think a summary is in order. Please note, I've only got two keggings under my belt (well, over my belt these days...), so please don't hesitate to point out errors in my technique. My source is Ron Downer of Brewhaus in Knoxville (and I had to call him up at the Firehouse my first time kegging to get the answer to time :-) The way I do it is that I keg my beer, put up ~10psi to set the seals, and toss it in the fridge overnight to chill. Ron says 6 hours is his minimum. I pull the soda keg into the middle of the floor, hook up my CO2 and crank it up to the pressure the chart gives me. I think shake the heck out of the keg (and contents). This causes the solution to mix up and increases the surface area available for the CO2 to go into solution. My technique is to shake hard for 2 minutes, rest for 30 seconds, and start up in another direction. This is typically for a total of 15 minutes. You'll hear the CO2 going into solution at first. When you stop hearing that, start listening to your regulator and you'll hear more CO2 being added to the system. After a while, additional shaking doesn't cause a pressure drop as the CO2 going into solution has maximized. I keep shaking for a few minutes more to be sure. It is usually a comic sight in my kitchen when I carbonate: I sit on the floor with the keg between my feet - imagine rowing... Then, I put the keg back in the fridge and wait 45min. to 1hr for the head to go down and vent off some of the excess pressure and get back down some lower, but not atmospheric, pressure (have a towel ready and no, I didn't wait my first time and blew foam). I hook up the CO2 tank at dispensing pressure and bring out the first few glasses. If it's over carbonated, bleed down, shake to bring it out of solution, and then try carbonating again at a lower CO2 pressure. If undercarbonated, do the carbonation dance again at a little higher pressure. I noticed that going from 17psi to 20psi made a BIG difference. > Obviously, it isn't instantaneous, but when it does reach > 2.4 Vols., will it stay there and not take anymore CO2 into > solution ? My guess is no, but I'm a programmer, not a > cellar-master. Using my BS knowledge of Chem E., from an engineering perspective it actually will stay there. The solution is at an equilibrium for that given composition, temp, and pressure. The main time-problem is the permeation of the CO2 across the gas-liquid boundary. Just think of how slow sugar spread across the top of your coffee goes into solution as opposed to stirring it up. The partial pressure differential is what drives the CO2 into solution. Hence my carbonation dance in the kitchen to stir the solution up. I'll stop now as I'm embarrassed about how much Chem E. I've forgotten. I'm sure others carbonate just fine without shaking, but it doesn't take long and I can use the exercise. Ken Key (key at cs.utk.edu) Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville - CS Dept. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 92 9:36:05 CST From: tony at spss.com (Tony Babinec) Subject: how long does it take to force-carbonate a keg? In HBD #812, Mark Never has determined his pressure and temperature from the chart, but wonders how long to force-carbonate. In my experience, 3-5 minutes should work. Sanitize your keg and rack the beer to it. Secure the keg. Vent the keg. Attach the OUT fitting to the CO2 line. Attach the CO2 line to the OUT pin on the keg. Start with the regulator screw turned out, that is, with no pressure. Open the lines and tighten the screw to send some gas in. Stop the gas. Vent the keg. Do this relatively quickly 4 or 5 times to purge the headspace of air. Now, you're ready to carbonate in earnest. Open the gas line and set the pressure to the desired value. You should hear some vigorous bubbling as the gas enters the keg and the beer. The fun part is this: shake and roll the keg around as you're pressurizing. Over the course of time, the pressure inside the keg will go up, and CO2 will enter the keg less forcefully. However, shaking and rolling the keg seems to let more CO2 in. After 3-5 minutes, you will tire of this, and little CO2 will be going into the keg anyway. You're done. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1992 09:13 PDT From: Bob Jones <BJONES at NOVA.llnl.gov> Subject: CO2 & Kegging I recently got back into kegging after I had a bad experience several years ago. Low carb or all foam problems were the norm. I have been trying force carbonating a few kegs and natural carbonating others by sealing prior to the end of fermentation or priming. The results are not all in yet. My question is what do you long time keggers perceive as the difference (if any) in the mouth feel or head retention, etc between methods? Does the CO2 bind up differently in the beer if it is not injected via a stone? I could imagine the CO2 grabing on in big pieces rather than small pieces with natural carbonation. The bottom line would be whether one could tell or taste the difference. I know BUDMILOB is force carbonated and the head goes flat very fast, bud it don't have any body to support a head anyway! flat very fast, bud it don't have any body to support a head anyway! Bob Jones Return to table of contents
Date: Wednesday, 29 Jan 1992 12:47:38 EST From: m14051 at mwvm.mitre.org (John DeCarlo) Subject: Re: To Blow-off or Not? >From: korz at ihlpl.att.com >John DeCarlo writes: >> if you don't use a secondary fermenter, you may well benefit >>from having stuff removed during blow-off. >I disagree. The (alleged) benefits of blowoff are the removal >of higher (fusel) alcohols and (from my own obsevations) some >hop oils. Well, I didn't want to get into all of that. Suffice it to say without a lot of discussion that there I believe that there are no more fusel alcohols in properly made beer using a secondary than there are in beer made using blow-off. Don't know about hop oil differences. Internet: jdecarlo at mitre.org (or John.DeCarlo at f131.n109.z1.fidonet.org) Fidonet: 1:109/131 Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 92 12:01:18 CST From: quinnt at turing.med.ge.com (Tom Quinn 5-4291) Subject: Beer Delivery While reading through some recent posts about getting UPS to accept beer for shipment I thought of another question. Surely there are a few locations that receive a lot of UPS-shipped beer, like the Anchor Brewery in SF, which as I recall donates cooler space for brews sent for the regional AHA judging. At that point it seems likely that the UPS driver knows what he's delivering in such large quantities, and so must the UPS area office. I seem to recall that Russ W. mentioned in his 'how to pack beer' article in Zymurgy that he worked at Anchor receiving these beer shipments. If you're still out there, Russ, has there ever been any difficulties at the receiving end? Do the UPS (and other) delivery persons know what's going on around competition time? Anybody else had any experience receiving lots of beer shipments? Tom Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 92 12:24:31 EST From: cjh at vallance.HQ.Ileaf.COM (Chip Hitchcock) Subject: re NA beer I sent you a private message because I didn't think the procedure would work but wanted to get any facts you'd left out before calling you on it in public and seeing any remaining facts go up in flames. I included your entire message, even the signature line. If you don't remember what you've been saying, maybe you've had too much of your "NA" homebrew. Actually, the numbers I gave shed a great deal of light on your implausible claims, starting with a quantitative demonstration that you don't even know how much alcohol was in your beer before you treated it (unless you left out another fact and have been brewing \\really// weak beer...). I'm not foolish enough to say flat-out that you haven't produced a NA beer without seeing an independent assay; this digest is a running demonstration of the differences between practical results and theory, however solidly-founded (and the theory behind distilling is \very/ solid). However, it's certainly not safe to say the alcohol is gone from your beer; in fact, it's damned unlikely that your procedure will have much effect on alcohol level. On a more general level: I recall a msg 1-2 days after arf's saying that a west-coast group had produced NA beers via boiling. Does anyone have anything---procedures, volume losses, assay results---to substantiate this? The formula I was working with (see below) indicate that the ethanol/water ratio goes \down/ as the temperature goes up, suggesting that low-pressure distillation would work somewhat better. Does anyone \know/ how the commercial breweries do it? Formula for vapor pressure, from Lang's Handbook (courtesy a friend and sometime brewer who is closer to still practicing chemistry than I am): log10 (P) = A - B/(C+T) P is the vapor pressure in mm of Hg and T is the temperature in degrees Centigrade. For water: A=8.107 B=1750.3 C=235 (0-60 Centigrade) A=7.967 B=1668.2 C=228 (60-150 Centigrade) Ethanol: A=8.045 B=1554.3 C=222.6 This gives a vapor pressure ratio of 2.51 at 10C, 2.30 at 75C, and 2.22 at 100C. (Don't ask me for an explanation of the disjunction for water. I \think/ these numbers are empirical fits to known data points.) Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 92 14:13:17 EST From: Jay Hersh <hersh at expo.lcs.mit.edu> Subject: Hot idea on hot knives Hmmm we used to do something else with hot knives back in college, but that's another story... >I'm the one who keeps posting about using a hot knife instead of a >drill. I've done both and I'm completely sold on the hot knife. >You can pierce three or four hole each time you heat the knife. Ummm how about using a hot fork.. then you'll get tiny holes like you would with a drill, four or so at a time, and if the fork stays hot enough to do 3 or 4 shots each time you heat it then you get 16 holes.... Never tried this, just seems reasonable though... - JaH Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 92 11:30:31 PST From: grumpy!cr at uunet.UU.NET (C.R. Saikley) Subject: Stainless Coupling From: R_GELINAS at UNHH.UNH.EDU (Russ Gelinas) > I'm also looking for advice as to adding a spigot to a stainless steel >brewpot. According to the person with the MIG welder, the spigot has to >be the same steel as the pot. True? And if so, where to find a ss spigot? I've talked to a four professional welders, and they all agree that only stainless should be welded to stainless. I'm not a metallurgist, so I defer to those with practical experience. However, there is an easier and cheaper solution than getting a stainless spigot. Get a threaded stainless coupling. For the benefit of those who aren't familiar with plumbing lingo, a coupling is a cylinder with threads on the inside. (Which makes it female, as opposed to a nipple, which is male - go figure.) Weld the coupling to the stainless, and then screw your spigot of choice into the coupling. A ball valve works well here. You can then put a 90 degree elbow into the other side of the coupling (inside the boiler), and screw it in such that the open end of the elbow points down. This will have the effect of lowering the drain hole and will allow you to drain more from the boiler, which may be desirable. Another embellishment is to get some stainless mesh, fashion a filter screen out of it, and attach it to your elbow. (That's the elbow inside the boiler, not the elbow on you arm, silly.) This will help keep the spooge in the kettle and out of the carboy. It will also help prevent whole hops from plugging the spigot. If your spigot is already as low as you want it, bag the elbow and screw a nipple into your coupling. Then affix the screen to your nipple instead of your elbow. (Getting pretty graphic here!) It should look something like this : | | boiler wall \ / | | > < | | coupling / | \ -------------- --------------- ------------------------ spigot elbow | --------------- ------------------- | -------------- | | | | | | | | | | | | ------ | | screen | | -CR Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 92 12:40:01 PST From: Brew Free or Die! 29-Jan-1992 1532 <hall at buffa.enet.dec.com> Subject: Re: ss spigot Russ Gelinas writes: > I'm also looking for advice as to adding a spigot to a stainless steel >brewpot. According to the person with the MIG welder, the spigot has to >be the same steel as the pot. True? And if so, where to find a ss spigot? You can find stainless steel valves at a plumbing supply shop, but you'll pay dearly. Last I checked, a 1/2" ss valve, not full-bore, was on the order of $25. However, the valve doesn't need to be stainless, it's what gets welded to the ss pot that needs to be stainless. Typically, that would be a nipple, which is a short length of pipe threaded at both ends. Since most plumbing ball valves I've seen have female pipe threads at both ends, a nipple with male pipe threads is perfect. I recently paid $3.40 for a 3"x1/2" NPT stainless nipple. I then bought a 1/2" full-bore brass ball valve for $4.50. The body of the valve is brass, but the actual ball is stainless. BTW, in a full-bore valve, the actual hole through the ball is 1/2". If you don't get full-bore, the hole is more like 5/16". If you want to attach something to the nipple inside the vessel, for a collection pipe or whatever, it would either have to have a FPT end to attach to the nipple's MPT, or if the something had a MPT end, you'd need a stainless union to connect the something to the nipple. Optionally, get a longer nipple and put most of it inside the vessel. BTW Russ, I got my stainless nipples from a former friend in the plumbing supply business in the southern NH area. I recommend you try elsewhere. ;^) - -- Dan Hall Digital Equipment Corporation MKO1-2/H10 Merrimack, NH 03054 hall at buffa.enet.dec.com ....!decwrl!buffa.dec.com!hall "Persons intoxicated with wine pass out lying on their faces, while those drunk with beer invariably lie on their backs" --Aristotle Return to table of contents
Date: 29 Jan 92 16:25:28 EST From: JPJ at b30.prime.com Greetings, HB's... I'm sure this question's been asked before -somewhere-, but I'll ask it anyways -- I'm interested in introducing coffee flavor into my next batch of stout. Can I get away with using instant coffee? Should I just add it to the boil, or the secondary? Are there certain brands of instant that I should avoid? Should I just avoid instant coffee altogether and use real coffee? Thanks in advance, - jpj Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 92 15:03 CST From: korz at ihlpl.att.com Subject: Expensive beer Jeff writes-- >Unfortunately, I won't be drinking a lot of them, though, as they are $11 a >six here in Chicago. I used to say the same, but yesterday afternoon I was in a Suburban Chicago club and paid $2.75 plus tip for industrial beer. $11 a six sounds good to me AND I don't have to sit next to a smoker in my home. Expensive beer is just a matter of perspective. I simply go to bars less often now and enjoy better beer (besides -- most bars frown on bringing in your own homebrew). Al. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1992 13:23 PDT From: Bob Jones <BJONES at NOVA.llnl.gov> Subject: Sanitizing with Bleach After a recent discussion with a friend about sanitizing with bleach I decided to but pencil to paper and thought I would post my results. The concentration of bleach required to sanitize something is on the order of 50-300 ppm for a 30 minute contact time. These concentrations come from Micheal Lewis (50ppm) and a Microbiologist (300ppm) friend who works for Clorox. A concentration of 65ppm can be obtained with 1/2t in a 5gal carboy of water. 2T of bleach gives 780ppm in 5 gals of water. Assume you use 2t of bleach and you drain the carboy and leave 1t of residue. If you then refill the carboy with 5 gals of beer you are diluting the residue by a factor of 3855. Therefore the 780 ppm residue will be diluted to .2ppm in the refilled carboy of beer. The 1t of residue seems about what I get for a hasty dump. Now consider other concentrations and their resultant residue/dilution factors. Bleach Concentration in Residue in final added 5 gal water Beer ______ ______________ ______________ 1/2t 65ppm .017ppm 1T 390ppm .1ppm 2T 780ppm .2ppm 1/2C 3120ppm .8ppm 1C 6240ppm 1.6ppm The moral here is that more isn't better! If you want to reduce your input of known bad players, keep your bleach solution to a realistic level. I would go for a little overkill and use 1T in 5 gals. This should also prolong the life of your SS kegs too. All this assumes you keep your equipment clean and you are doing a 30 min soak. Bob Jones Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 92 15:26 CST From: korz at ihlpl.att.com Subject: Wyeast seams The old 1.75 fl.oz. packages used to have three seams of one kind, a sort of fine-machined 1/2 inch seal, and one of a different kind, a sort of corregated 3/4 inch to 1 inch seal. The new ones are the opposite. I've never had a package burst, but just from looking at the packages, I feel that the fine-machined seams would never burst (I think the foil would fail first!) and the corregated ones looked suspect. Therefore, it seems to me that this new package is a step in the wrong direction. On the other hand, the people at Wyeast have GREAT products and I doubt they would goof something like this up. Can someone who knows David Logsdon personally or professionally ask him about the change in packaging? I'm curious. Al. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1992 14:08:10 PST From: John_Zettler.ADFMcLean_CSD at xerox.com Subject: GABF Claims Would someone please explain the recent claims I have seen in TV advertisements regarding Coors Extra Gold? Coors states that Extra Gold is a two time Great American Beer Festival winner. How so? What are the categories and how are they judged? Thanks in advance. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 92 19:40:50 MST From: kbrunell at NMSU.Edu Subject: Slow starting yeast. Ok, after two days my Red Star (never again) yeast did NOTHING. I then acquired some more dry yeast from a friend (no brand marking on the package), and two MORE days later, after a little stirring it is finally bubbling through the lock. My question is, is it likely that my brew has become infected durring the long waiting period? Also, could such an infection cause any un-tasteable/-smellable (i.e. undetectable) poisons, like the big B, or anything like that? Thanks, -Ken Return to table of contents
End of HOMEBREW Digest #813, 01/30/92