HOMEBREW Digest #165 Wed 31 May 1989

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		Rob Gardner, Digest Coordinator

  S.G. measurement problem (Gordon Hester)
  Stirring the wort (man)
  Re:  Headaches, US Beer, Volksfest, etc (florianb)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Tue, 30 May 89 10:52:11 -0400 (EDT) From: Gordon Hester <gh0t+ at andrew.cmu.edu> Subject: S.G. measurement problem I boiled up a batch of ginger beer last night. I'm hoping that it will make good summer drinking when things get hot and sticky here in Pittsburgh (which will happen all too soon.) I screwed up, though, when I put the 2 gallons of boiled wort in the primary fermenter with 3 gallons of cold water - I measured the S.G. of the undiluted wort instead of the wort plus water. I was scratching my head for awhile over the fact that I got a reading of 1.112! I knew I didn't put that much malt and honey in there! Well, I figured out what my error was, obviously, but now I'm wondering what to do about it (OTHER THAN relax and have a homebrew, thanks). Is there any way that I can estimate the S.G. of the diluted wort? Multiplying the S.G. of the wort (112) by the approximate proportion of the wort to the whole batch (0.4 or so) seems an obvious method, and yields a not-unreasonable figure (about .045, which seems consistent with the 6 pounds of malt and honey in the batch). But I'm by no means sure that this is a valid estimation method. Any ideas? BTW, I'm reluctant to open up the fermenter and take out a sample - why risk contamination for something that, after all, isn't going to affect the resulting beer. But this is only my third batch, and I'm trying to keep track of what I'm doing, including original and final S.G.'s of each batch. While I'm posting a message, I'd like to ask if anyone else has any experience brewing ginger beer. (That's beer with ginger used as a flavoring, BTW, not "ginger beer" as in the stuff made by Schwepps that you can but in the grocery store.) My interest in making some was spurred by an encounter in Trinidad with a beer called "Shandy" that is a regular (lager, I assume) light beer made by the Carib beer company (Trinidad's largest brewing company by far) that is supplemented with a strong dose of ginger. It was very pleasant to drink in a tropical climate. What I made last night was an attempt to reproduce that flavor, but in an ale with considerably more malt character than Carib has. I used Papazian's recipe for something like "Linda's Lovely Honey Ginger Beer" as a rough guide, with a bit less honey (I didn't have 3 lbs on hand, and the stores weren't open) and some crystal malt added for color and flavor. gordon hester gh0t+ at andrew.cmu.edu Return to table of contents
Date: 30 May 1989 10:19 EDT From: man at kato.att.com Subject: Stirring the wort Has anyone tried using an automatic stirrer in their brewing ? I found a device at my sister's house a couple months ago. She was using it to stir gravy, and it worked well. She bought one for me and I have used it in my last two batches. It works great. It is a small pyrex dish, about the size of a small ashtray. I put it at the bottom of my brewing pot and as the boiling starts, the "ashtray" rotates and mixes the stuff. A great helper! And I haven't had my usual problem of scorching on the bottom of the pot. The last two batches have left clean pots. Best of all, I don't have to keep on top of the boiling action now. I think it cost $5.00 at a local gourmet shop. Has anyone else used a similar device ? RDWHAH, Mark Nevar Return to table of contents
Date: 30 May 89 13:43:01 PDT (Tue) From: florianb%tekred.cna.tek.com at RELAY.CS.NET Subject: Re: Headaches, US Beer, Volksfest, etc Thanks go to Daryl Richman for his comments on brew process, quality of US beers, headaches, etc. My German friends also commented on the headaches they got from drinking US beers, so I don't think it is indicative of my personal chemistry. I'd still like to obtain a satisfactory explanation of why some beers produce headaches while others do not. So far, I have heard a lot of good ideas, but none convincing enough for my "Doubting Thomas" sort of skepticism. I, meanwhile, cling to the bad water/poor process explanations. I will give a suitable prize to the first person who can convince me otherwise. On the subject of aluminum in brewing--I'd stay away from cooking anything acidic in aluminum. Why take a chance? Florian Return to table of contents
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