HOMEBREW Digest #912 Mon 29 June 1992

Digest #911 Digest #913

		Rob Gardner, Digest Coordinator

  Priming with DME (John Otten)
  Re: Low sparge yield (Jason Goldman)
  Ants on hops... (Dan Kerl)
  More on hop backs. Mash effieciency. (Kinney Baughman)
  re Immersion Chiller usage! (Carl West)
  Re: bottling wands (zymurgy review and question) (Steve Dempsey)
  Phil's Philler (korz)
  dry-hop? (Russ Gelinas)
  re: English Bitters--Brewing Beers like Young's they make.  AGAIN (John Hartman)
  Re: Wort Chillers for Extract Brewers? (Jeff Frane)
  Reading SG from wort in Carboy: SUMMARY (Kent Dalton)
  Baltimore area brewpubs (Richard Akerboom)
  brewpubs in albuquerque (Brian Bliss)
  Soda Kegs ("David L. Speed")
  Filler, Mash Yield (Jack Schmidling)
  Crazy Horse Amendment (Mike Fertsch) hopfen!mikef at synchro.com
  Write Your Congress Rep!

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Fri, 26 Jun 92 09:25:59 EDT From: otten at CS.WM.EDU (John Otten) Subject: Priming with DME Yes I Know this is a FAQ, but I never pay attention to such things until it has to do with me :-) I am making a brown ale, and plan to bottle on Tuesday. In the past I have used 3/4 cup dextrose dissolved in one quart boiling water. This time I want to use DME for the priming (even though I have about 2 pounds of dextrose from earlier supplies). SO... how much DME is equivalent to 3/4 dextrose? Thanks, John otten at cs.wm.edu Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 26 Jun 92 8:14:32 MDT From: Jason Goldman <jason at gibson.sde.hp.com> Subject: Re: Low sparge yield Gordon Baldwin <hpubvwa.nsr.hp.com!sherpa2!gbaldwin> writes... > I posted here about 2 months ago complaining about low yield. The > general concensus was to slow down my sparge, and that helped, but I am > still not up to where I think I should be. Here are the details: .... > Any pointers to what I should try next would be greatly appreciated. Well since you're using plenty of grain and the grind, and sparge seem OK, I'd next suggest you check your pH. Jason gibson.sde.hp.com Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 26 Jun 92 9:55:03 CDT From: kerl at cmack.b11.ingr.com (Dan Kerl) Subject: Ants on hops... In HBD #910, rak at mayo.EDU (Ron Karwoski) writes: > << material deleted >> > I noticed the second top (just the top inch) was missing about a week > later and closer inspection revealed an army of ANTS! marching up and > down the twine. My question: Will these tops come back and the plants > resume climbing or are they stuck for the year? How do I get rid of > the ANTS!? Soap? Something I've seen that occurs in particular species of ants is a peculiar behavior called "aphid farming" The ants will transport aphids to suitable "grazing areas", then "milk" the aphids for "honeydew", an aphid secretion rich in sugar. It might be a good idea to look closely for aphids if ants are observed on the hop vines, and treat accordingly. Ladybugs are hell on aphids, if you can convince them to hang around. In any case, I'm not aware of any common species of ants that like to chow down on hops. Dan Kerl Intergraph Corp. kerl at cmack.b11.ingr.com Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 26 Jun 1992 11:56 EDT From: Kinney Baughman <BAUGHMANKR at CONRAD.APPSTATE.EDU> Subject: More on hop backs. Mash effieciency. Russ sez: >My plan now is to pour boiling water into the plastic >buckets/hop-back and let it sit while the wort is chilling as usual. The >heat should sanitize the buckets. Then I can pour the cooled wort through >the hop-back. No hot wort, no plastic nasties, and well-oxygenated wort >as a by-product. True. But, as you note below, I don't think you will extract as many hop oils from the wort by circulating cooled wort over them. Moreover, I'd worry some about bacterial contamination. Since you're running cooled wort over fresh hops you're basically dry hopping. But dry hopping in the secondary is safer than what you propose here because some alcohol has already been generated during primary fermentation and therefore lessens the risk of contamination. >One concern about your hot wort/hop-back/chill scheme, >Kinney, is that the hops are not being used as a trub filter bed, at least >not for the cold break material. But I guess that's the price you pay >for all that great hop aroma that'll be extracted by the hot wort. Does >Sierra Nevada hop-back with hot or cold wort? You know me, Russ. I'm the infamous pot-scrubber-in-a-mesh-bag guy. With that technique, I filter the wort up front. Your point about the cold break material is true but all hop backs assume the circulation of hot wort over the hops prior to the wort entering the wort chiller. Letting the wort sit on the cold break is another issue and one that I, frankly, don't worry too much about. I figure I'm doing such a good job of filtering off the hot break, a little bit of cold break can't be too detrimental to my beer, discussions about the pros and cons of this notwithstanding. Plus, with the ol' BrewCap system, I can drain away the cold break immediately upon the cessation of primary fermentation. I figure that's the time to get the beer away from the cold break anyway since allowing the beer to sit on the break appears to be advantageous during the respiration phase of the yeast. I know some would disagree but my beers have been turning out just fine. Sierra Nevada hop-backs with hot wort. And Gordon worries about the low yield of his mashes: >I use a one step infusion mash at 155 for 45 minutes. Mashing at 155 will not convert as many of the sugars as would mashing at 150. Mashing at 155 will promote a dextrinish wort. You'll miss the maltose since the enzymes for converting these are inactive if not destroyed at the higher temps. >It looks like I get complete conversion testing with iodine. I tested >before so I know what to look for when conversion was complete. I usually see starch conversion at 45 minutes, too. But Dave Line recommends letting the mash continue for another 45 minutes past starch conversion for an even more complete conversion. >I sparge with about 4 gallons ~170 water until it no longer tastes >sweet, about 6 gallons. I sparge in the Zap-pap lauter tun (nested >buckets with the inner bucket drilled with about a thousand holes.) Again, following Dave Line, I use a sparge bag. He points out that sparging in a plastic bucket will promote capillary action along the sides of the bucket thus wasting all that water. The coarseness of the sides of a sparging bag reduces this tendency. Although I've never done a side by side test, I had a customer who did and he reported an increased yield with a sparge bag. FWIW. >Sparge now takes about 45 minutes to complete. That's plenty of time. Cheers ya'll, ___ ----------------------------------------------------------- ___ | | Kinney Baughman | | | | baughmankr at conrad.appstate.edu | | \ / \ / | "Beer is my business and I'm late for work" | --------------------------------------------------------------- Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 26 Jun 92 11:37:52 EDT From: eisen at kopf.HQ.Ileaf.COM (Carl West) Subject: re Immersion Chiller usage! Rick, This has already been discussed this month, check out the digests from the 5th and 6th. You can run either wort or water through an imersion chiller, both work, neither is _wrong_. Ease up. Carl WISL,BM. Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 26 Jun 92 10:41:56 MST From: Steve Dempsey <steved at longs.lance.colostate.edu> Subject: Re: bottling wands (zymurgy review and question) In HBD #911 Spencer W. Thomas <Spencer.W.Thomas at med.umich.edu> writes: > My question: there was a discussion of Phils Philler in this list a > while back (6 mo?) and I thought that the consensus was that the > little air hole at the top (that allows for property 2 above) at least > had the potential for introducing air into the beer as it flowed by > (by Bernoulli's principle). Has anybody had any further thoughts on > this or experiments to back it up or refute it? I have a Phil's Philler. The hole at the top is closed when the main valve opens. There are no apparent bubbles at the exit of the filler (no bubbles floating to the surface) during filling. The filler is designed very well and does a great job. > I'm currently using one with the valve at the bottom. ... > But it does "spray" beer out the bottom. This is the primary source of oxidation in bottles, followed by excessive head space. The spray creates great turbulence in the presence of air and can oxidize the beer. You may as well pour an ounce of beer in the bottle and shake it up before filling the remainder. If you could purge your bottles with CO2 before filling with beer, this problem would be eliminated, but that's obviously too much work. > Still it's better than no bottling wand, by far. I disagree; a spring clamp on the siphon hose can work just as well for controlling/stopping the flow and produces no splashing or spraying. Steve Dempsey, Engineering Network Services Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523 +1 303 491 0630 INET: steved at longs.LANCE.ColoState.Edu, dempsey at handel.CS.ColoState.Edu UUCP: boulder!ccncsu!longs.LANCE.ColoState.Edu!steved, ...!ncar!handel!dempsey Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 26 Jun 92 11:46 CDT From: korz at iepubj.att.com Subject: Phil's Philler I tried Phil's Philler at the AHA Conference. It does not suck air as Spencer suggests since (I believe) the air hole is covered when the "valve" is open. Stopping and RESTARTING the philler *does* introduce a big bubble. The guy behind the counter (Mr. Listerman, I believe) said that with proper practice, you will never introduce air like that. It's true that when he filled the bottles, he very rarely had any bubbles and probably only because he was hurrying and leaning over a table. For those with shaky hands, Phil's Philler could prove difficult to use, but with practice, you could probably avoid air 95% of the time. Incidentally, when I do splash the beer around as I fill or if it's one of the first 10 or so bottles, I mark the bottle as "NOT FOR COMPETITION." It would really be terrible if the one bad bottle of my finest beer made it into (and quickly out of) a competition. Regarding spraying (with any variety of filler) while the level of the beer is below the end of the wand, there is a simple way to slow the rate of filling till the end is submerged: change the height of the bottle. I use the dreaded "orange tip" filler and I like it. When I begin, I have the bottom of the filler about 6 inches below the level of the beer in the priming tank. Once the end is submerged, I lower the bottle to the floor and the bottle fills up quickly. Note that the "orange tip" filler now leaks. I used to curse this, but not anymore... I use it to my advantage. When the bottle is filled to the very top, and I remove the wand, the level, of course, drops. But since the "orange tip" is slowly leaking, it still is filling slowly. I can get easily the level in the bottle at 3/4 to 1 inch from the top, which is what I believe is ideal. Al. Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 26 Jun 1992 15:07:01 -0400 (EDT) From: R_GELINAS at UNHH.UNH.EDU (Russ Gelinas) Subject: dry-hop? I've got some question that pertain to chillers, hopping, and all this sort of stuff we've been talking about. Isn't it a good idea to allow the steam from the hot wort to escape to disperse DMS (dimethtyl sulfide, the cooked vegetable smell)? If so, do you counterflow-chiller users wait a while before you start chillin'? How long is "long enough"? Now, why is the hot-wort/hop-back/counterflow-chiller combo any different or better than just adding finishing hops to the hot wort and quickly immersion chilling? The counterflow method should keep more of the volatile hops oils in the brew. But the standard finishing hops method allows for longer hop/wort contact time, and so should allow more hops oils to be released to the wort (and the air). Seems like the two methods might end up being more or less equal, except one makes your house smell like hops ;-) Russ G. Space Science Center UNH Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 25 Jun 92 09:13:38 PDT From: hartman at varian.varian.com (John Hartman) Subject: re: English Bitters--Brewing Beers like Young's they make. AGAIN Dear Readers-- I understand that this recent submission was unfortunately garbled and am hereby resubmitting it with nice, well-behaved newlines. I believe the problem is fixed. My email karma has not been good lately... The mailer I used apparently feels that no paragraph should contain more than one newline nor should a paragraph be longer than 1024 characters. That mailer was yesterday unceremoniously shot to death. My apologies. Enjoy the tour. - --- This recent discussion prompts me to give further details of my trip. I spoke at length with two of the five brewers at Young's Brewery in London. They definitely qualify as "lupulophobic". I describe what I learned about their ales below... They make a number of cask ales, some bottled ales, and a couple of lagers. My focus was on their ales and does not apply to their lagers. In particular I was interested in Young's Special cask-conditioned ale. As this information was given to me in the tasting room after the tour, my focus did eventually become blurred and my arm did eventually become tired. While tasting you see, I was forced to fill my own pints via hand pump;-) Also I didn't want to pry (I just wanted to know everything:-)). Consequently, the information I do have is incomplete and not well organized--sorry. On the other hand, what I did learn came straight from the brewers, who were very enthusiastic and forthcoming, so I assume it's accurate. If I wasn't sure about what I remembered I have noted so in parentheses... All of their grists are "approximately the same". They use "only the finest ingredients they can find". The variety of malt is Maris-Otter. I have a small sample of crystal that appears to be about 20 or 40 lovibond. Some flaked barley is also used for head retention. A certain amount of brewing sugar is used. I don't know how much nor in which beers. Contrary to what is printed in the "The Real Ale Drinker's Almanac", Young's does not use torrefied wheat in any of their brewing. In general I was disappointed with the accuracy of the information found in the almanac. Let the brewer beware that the ingredients they list have little in common with what in reality Young's uses. Oh well. Young's Special draught should not be confused with the bottled Special London Ale sold here in the US. The draught bitter has an OG of ~ 36, draught special has an OG of ~ 46, and the bottled Special London Ale is ~ 66 OG. I don't know what IBU levels are used for the beers, but they do use a single addition of Fuggles in the kettle at the beginning of the boil. And now we come to the issue of finish hops. The draught bitter is (I believe) dry-hopped with (I believe) East Kent Goldings. The bottled Special London Ale is dry-hopped with East Kent Goldings. The draught special is dry-hopped with the Target variety in plug form. The box called them pellets, but they were in fact 1/2 oz. plugs as we know them here in the states. For each 36 Imperial Gal cask (43 US Gal.) they use a mere 2 oz. of Target! I was embarrassed to tell them how much I use and for a brief moment considered prevarication (lying, that is). When I told them that I usually use about 1 to 2 oz. per 5 US Gal., there was no uncertain amount of surprise and disdain. I believe this "lupulophile" lost some credibility here. Oh well. I still hop most of my beers at such a rate. Young's only started dry-hopping about two years ago. The owner and most of the brewers were not interested in trying it, but once they had, they decided to make the change. I suspect the economy of dry-hopping, i.e., more aroma at less cost, played a part in that decision. Their beers ferment in open primaries for seven days. They are then transferred to secondary for seven more days. Then the beer is placed in SS casks. It is at this point the beer is dry-hopped and fined with Isinglass powder. In a few days the draught is drayed (delivered by horse-drawn cart) to their local tied houses. Finally after a few more days in the pub cellar it's served to the many patrons who happily slake their thirst. The beers are never primed or krausened. Their yeast strain is a slow finisher which allows them to develop a light level of carbonation in the cask without priming. I have since tried this and it works quite well. Also it makes brewing that much easier since I don't have to mess with gyle or corn sugar. They do have a kegging and bottling operation which (I believe) force-carbonates those products. I asked for an opinion on our weighty matter of whether to skim the krausen or use a blow-off tube vs. not skimming. They don't skim per se, but do employ some technique which has the same effect. The brewers definitely recommend skimming. They said it improves the "brightness" and stability of the beer, not necessarily the flavor. I hadn't heard of Target, so I enquired. The Target variety is a descendant of EKG. It is a 10-12% hi-alpha, hi-aroma version that I do not believe is available here. I have since called Dave Wills of Freshops to see if he carries them. He said this year he ordered 100lbs of imported EKG and sold them quickly even though he didn't advertize their availability. He plans on ordering more and so I told him to consider the Target variety. He will, depending on the interest level. If you as well would like to use this hop perhaps you might call Dave an express your interest. Freshops' number is 1-503-929-2736. I have no affiliation with Freshops other than buying lots o' hops from them. If you know where one may obtain Target here, let me know. As an aside which has nothing to do with how they brew their beers, the owner related to me that several years ago when Fritz Maytag was reviving the Anchor Brewery here in SF he visited Young's for two weeks. He took back with him recipes and knowledge gained at the Young's brewery. So maybe I'm on the right track... That is all. Cheers, John hartman at varian.varian.com Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 26 Jun 92 10:49 PDT From: gummitch at techbook.com (Jeff Frane) Subject: Re: Wort Chillers for Extract Brewers? homebrew at lupulus.ssc.gov writes: >I'm an extract brewer (with occasional specialty grains), on my 16th >batch in about 1 year. Will a wort chiller help my brew? I would say the answer is an unequivocal YES. I regularly teach a beginning homebrewing class, in which I use the basic method of adding dense wort to water. When I compare these beers to the pilot beers I make doing a full-wort boil (with wort chiller), the difference in flavor is pretty extraordinary. The downside, of course, is that you need to buy a bigger kettle and that you need to spend a little time and money on a wort chiller. You have to decide for yourself whether the tradeoff is worth it, but I think you will definitely make better beers this way. - --Jeff Frane Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 26 Jun 92 13:53:16 MDT From: Kent Dalton <kentd at bach.ftcollinsco.NCR.COM> Subject: Reading SG from wort in Carboy: SUMMARY I'd like to give a big "thank you" to all the HBDers who helped me with suggestions on techniques for reading SG from wort in the carboy. The response was exceptional! You folks are great! In appreciation, I've prepared a summary of the ideas I received so others might benefit... Summary of SG Reading Techniques: ================================= 1. Use a Turkey Baster to remove wort from carboy and take reading- This was *by far* the most suggested technique. Most folks suggested trying to hunt down a glass or pyrex baster rather than the garden variety plastic types for ease of sanitation. Some mentioned that metal models might also be available. 2. Use a "wine thief" or a large glass pipette to remove some of the wort for SG readings - This has the advantage of easy sterilization. Some said that a drawback was that some wine thiefs required a couple of "thefts" in order to get enough wort to take a reading. They should be readily available at brewing stores which also carry wine making supplies. 3. Use the "BrewCap" - Apparently the brewcap is a commercial product which has a collection hose which allows one to judge whether fermentation has completed based on the rate of yeast deposit in the hose. I would like more information on what exactly this product does and if any other benefits are gained from its use. If anyone knows more, please let me know. 4. Measure SG in the carboy itself by lowering the hydrometer into it - I probably will not use this because of the size of my carboy neck and the amount of blowoff is usually enough that I wouldn't be able to get the hydrometer out once it was inserted. Plus I don't sterilize my hydrometer very often. 5. Siphon some wort out into your graduated cylinder for reading the SG General SG reading tips: ======================== SG readings from blow off are inaccurate. Never return wort to carboy after taking an SG reading. Note that one HBD'er reported different OG's at different sample levels (depth); this would be a good way of testing whether you shook up the beer adequately when pitching.... Avoid taking too many samples, watch the airlock and the wort to determine how far a long you are to avoid having to do SG readings too often. Many HBDers reported similar experiences to the following: What you do though is watch the fermentation lock. If it goes more then 1min between gulps it's done. Make sure to hang a therometer in the area though since flucations in temperture can affect CO2. Contributors: Tom Dimock <RGG at cornellc.cit.cornell.edu> Nick Zentena <zen%hophead at canrem.com> Kinney Baughman <BAUGHMANKR at conrad.appstate.edu> Greg Troxel <gdt at garlic.lcs.mit.edu> Scott James. <scojam at scojam.auto-trol.com> Geoffrey Sherwood <sherwood at mv.us.adobe.com> Chad Epifanio <chad at mpl.ucsd.edu> Jim Larsen <jal at techbook.com> Chip Hitchcock <cjh at diaspar.hq.ileaf.com> Spencer W. Thomas <Spencer.W.Thomas at med.umich.edu> Jim Grady <jimg at hpwalq.wal.hp.com> Lynn Reid <reid at kali.mit.edu> <buchman at marva1.ENET.dec.com> Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 26 Jun 92 09:38:48 EST From: boomer at sylsoft.com (Richard Akerboom) Subject: Baltimore area brewpubs I know this was discussed recently, but some friends of mine asked me yesterday about brewpubs in the Baltimore area. I know of Baltimore Brewing Co. and Sissons (sp?). Does someone have addresses and/or phone numbers? Also I've heard of a bar south of Baltimore, I think, that has many types of beer on draft including a Duesseldorfer Altbier. Perhaps in Columbia, MD? Any suggestions? I will post results if interest warrants it. Thanks Rich - ----------------------------------------------------------------------- Richard Akerboom Domain: boomer at sylsoft.com or akerboom at dartmouth.edu Sylvan Software uucp: decvax!dartvax!sylsoft!boomer Mechanic St. Phone: 802-649-2231 P. O. Box 566 FAX: 802-649-2238 Norwich, VT 05055 USA Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 28 Jun 92 00:11:15 CDT From: bliss at csrd.uiuc.edu (Brian Bliss) Subject: brewpubs in albuquerque check out billy's long bar. they have 22 taps running, with the only pisswater being Buttweiper & Butt wipe light. Let's see, Watney's Cream Ale & Stout, Guiness, Bass, Anchor Porter/Steam/Liberty Ale, all the Paulaner Beers, and more. They also have yards (I did one of Guiness, didn't quite turn the glass right, and got a plop of foam in the face), and the most gorgeous bartendresses I've seen in my life. **** (four stars) bb Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 28 Jun 92 10:08:25 -0400 From: "David L. Speed" <dspeed at phoenix.Princeton.EDU> Subject: Soda Kegs My current inventory has a mix of ball-lock and pin-lock soda kegs. Unfortunately, they are not quite the same size and cause stacking problems in my old fridge. Given this, I would like to *trade* four (4) ball-lock 5 gal soda kegs for 4 pin-lock kegs. The kegs have been used by me for approx 2 years, have been disassembled and cleaned. They have new O-rings on the top port and do not leak. Interested parties should email me directly. Dave Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 28 Jun 92 09:46 CDT From: arf at ddsw1.mcs.com (Jack Schmidling) Subject: Filler, Mash Yield To: Homebrew Digest Fm: Jack Schmidling >From: "Spencer W. Thomas" <Spencer.W.Thomas at med.umich.edu> >He liked Phils Philler the best because (1) the beer doesn't spray out the bottom (so no aeration at that end) and because (2) it left very little head room (so little oxidation potential at that end). Phil was in Milwaukee and when he demonstrated the filler to me, it seemed to squirt beer around the top somewhere. I left with the general impression that it is a bit messy. >I'm currently using one with the valve at the bottom.... But it does "spray" beer out the bottom. There are two simple tricks to minimize the spray. First of all, you raise the bottle to reduce the head pressure when starting and secondly if you tilt the bottle, you quickly cover the end of the wand with beer. Once it is covered, put the bottle back down to the normal filing location. ............... >From: Gordon Baldwin <hpubvwa.nsr.hp.com!sherpa2!gbaldwin> >I posted here about 2 months ago complaining about low yield. The general concensus was to slow down my sparge, and that helped, but I am still not up to where I think I should be. Here are the details: 8 lb klages .5 lb munich .5 lb crystal >I use a one step infusion mash at 155 for 45 minutes. > The starting gravity is 1.036 and finishing is 1.006. With 9 lb of grain I think I should be getting around 1.040. > I just brewed a similar receipe using 12 lb of grain and I only got 1.042. I have no experience with plastic bucket brewing, but the second figure is more of a problem than the first which is in the ball park. You may be getting all you can get by dumping hot water onto a bucket full of malt. I use an active mash, i.e. in a kettle on the stove. This allows a mashout at 178F and I sparge with boiling water. My typical yields for six gallons are 1.040 with 9 lbs and 1.055 with 12 lbs. I have tried stirring the mash after extracting 5 gallons and get real excited to see the gravity of the next sample take a quantum leap but the net extraction does not seem to be effected. The initial sample out always seems to be around 1.080 no matter how much grain I use. I would be interested in comparing notes with others on yield just to see what the mean values really are. >My grind seems good, I get my grain from The Cellar in Setttle, (They are only about a mile from my house). They have a good roller mill there that I use, and they checked the grind and thought it looked fine. There are those who claim that fresh is where it's at. For example, one brewpub claimed they had to increase the amount of malt by 10% if it sat over night after milling. I rather doubt this but people have also claimed their yields went up by 10% when they used a MALTMILL. So who am I to argue. js Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 28 Jun 1992 10:34:42 EDT From: (Mike Fertsch) hopfen!mikef at synchro.com Subject: Crazy Horse Amendment To: Beer Aficionados From: Marlene Spears (reply through Mike Fertsch) Date: 1992 June 28 Subject: Write Your Congress Rep! URGENT! Just because certain people have been offended by Heileman's Crazy Horse malt liquor, Congress wants to force Sam Adams, William Penn, and maybe even Buffalo Bill, to change the names of their beers! Think that's over-reacting? Then: Write your Representative and demand that the "Crazy Horse" Amendment be stricken from Bill HR 5488! Better yet, FAX your letter: THE BILL GOES TO THE HOUSE ON JULY 1ST! Thursday, 25th June, the US House Appropriations Committee voted to add the "Crazy Horse" amendment to HR 5488, a Bill to authorize $22.8 BILLION in appropriations for -- look at this! -- the US POSTAL SERVICE, the BUREAU OF ALCOHOL, TOBACCO AND FIREARMS, and other TREASURY DEPT. agencies! The "Crazy Horse" amendment forbids manufacturers and distributors of *all* alcoholic beverages from using the names of DEAD historical figures to sell their products. [BATF already forbids the use of names of LIVE historical figures without their permission, protecting us from, say, "Dan Quayle Potatoe Beer".] The amendment was approved by the Committee on a show of hands by 29 to 11 votes, with the advocacy of Mr. Frank Wolf (R-VA), so it has considerable support on the Committee. The Committee also by-passed other House Committees, such as Commerce, with this amendment. It's another case of a small group of people making a knee-jerk reaction to a genuine issue and trying to slap on a band-aid without considering the full cost of their actions. This is typical of the real machinations of our Congress, with so much to do and so little time. The name that a brewer gives to his beer is not directly relevant to the amount of money the Postal Service and the Secret Service and the BATF should receive for the next fiscal year. But it will be restricted by a three- or four-paragraph amendment to a several-hundred-page Bill, and probably will receive no more consideration than a sneeze unless somebody calls Congress's attention to it! I see some fundamental problem with this amendment (yes, I have contacted my Rep., Mr. Ed Markey). Regardless of how I personally might feel about the makers of Sam Adams or Crazy Horse, I believe Congress cannot legislate taste! The market, we who buy beer, should decide. We can put pressure on the G. Heileman Brewing Co., of LaCrosse, WI, without passing laws that violate First Amendment rights. And the wording is too vague. Deciphering the meaning of the words "deceased historical figure" might tie up the court system for years without serving the public's best interests. Before this amendment becomes law, we can stop it and thereby save taxpayers' money that will otherwise be spent challenging it in court. The "Crazy Horse" amendment is unjustified censorship. Congress should focus its attention on larger issues and stop micro-managing public opinion. The last thing we need is the BATF conducting a "pedigree search" on every beer name! I'm trying to get my hands on a hard copy of the text of the amendment itself. If I get it, and there's any response to this posting, I'll type it in. But if you're going to write, DON'T WAIT. Tell your Representative that you care about this trivial and petty amendment and want it deleted from the Bill. Believe it or not, JUST ONE LETTER FROM ONE CONSTITUENT might be enough to call it to your Rep's attention. And it will only take one or two Representatives asking that the item be brought up for consideration to get the full House to challenge the amendment. It's a little thing, yes, but it's a question of freedom. Remember, it's just such a little thing that allows us to brew our beers legally, for those of us who don't live in states that forbid it. We can lose that freedom, too, if we don't defend it. Or we can make a little noise once in awhile and prevent a knee-jerk reaction against beer and alcohol from becoming an amendment to another House Bill. [My information comes from an article that appeared in the Boston Globe on 26th June 1992. Ms. Adrian Seibert (sp.?) of States News Service, in Washington, DC, graciously provided me with the number of the Bill and additional information about it. I'm not on the HBD net, but you can zap Mike Fertsch at <mikef at synchro.com>. Unfortunately I can't tell you who your Representative is; call your Public Library or City/Town Clerk.] - -- Mike Fertsch Internet: mikef at synchro.com Internet: mikef%hopfen at rsi.com Wortnet: mikef Return to table of contents
End of HOMEBREW Digest #912, 06/29/92