HOMEBREW Digest #2353 Thu 20 February 1997

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		Digest Janitor: janitor@ brew.oeonline.com
		Many thanks to the Observer & Eccentric Newspapers of 
		Livonia, Michigan for sponsoring the Homebrew Digest.
				URL: http://www.oeonline.com

  mixing bitter and mild (Hal Davis)
  Secondary fermentation in bottles? (Hal Davis)
  Welcome Back/Call Oliver Stone/1002 Uses! (Rust)
  Re: Counterflow chill. cold break, house flavor (Oliver Weatherbee)
  Munich malt and flaked maize (Charles Rich)
  Soapy beer and lurking nast ("Mark Tomusiak")
  High Point Part 3,brewing way down under,skunkiness correction ("David R. Burley")
  Draught Guinness & porter connection? (Dave Hinkle)
  Re: AOB/AHA:The $100,000 Question (charlie)
  re: Blonde Ale (Charles Burns)
  rack off hop pellets?/bottle fillers/iodophor (korz)
  Best Porter for Style Demonstration (Charles Burns)
  Stupid newbie tricks (Matthew Arnold)
  Homemade EM (Bob McCowan)
  Lots O' Trub (Scott Goeke)
  what else? botulism/mash methods (Richard Seyler)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 09:15:07 -0600 (CST) From: Hal Davis <davis at planolaw.com> Subject: mixing bitter and mild Greets, brewers and brewsters: Rob Moline's articles on Porter are much appreciated. He mentions mixing stale and mild for Porter, and he mentions mixing modern-day mixing of bitter and mild. I confess to being largely ignorant of BOTH practices (actually *each* practice). I have a "porter" in bottles, and I like it a lot (reminiscent of Anchor Porter), but it doesn't use any kind of sour beer. BTW, if mixing stale and mild gives Porter, then what do you call the combination of bitter and mild? I have a three empty kegs, and I'd like to fill them with stale, mild, and bitter. Then I could try my hand at beer mixology. Unfortunately, I am knowledge-handicapped. I have only brewed about 24 batches of beer, and only one of them is a full mash. I have a recipe for Ordinary Bitter (in Papazian's New Joy, as well as Cat's Meow), and I have some home brewed special bitter in bottles and an ESB in a keg right now. First questions: would it be inappropriate to use a special bitter or an ESB for these mixing experiments? Or would that be contrary to the purpose, as they have higher alcohol than ordinary bitter, and the whole purpose of mixing with mild is to decrease the alcohol content? I also see a couple of recipes for mild in New Joy. "Cheeks to the Wind Mild" on p. 198 says it's a traditional English mild. (4# English dried light plain malt extract, 1/2 # black patent malt, 1 oz fuggles 60 minutes, 1-2 pks ale yeast, priming sugar or DME). However, it appears not to be a brown (it uses light extract), and the porter articles spoke of porter being a mix of two different kinds of brown ales. Second questions: would Cheeks to the Wind Mild be a good choice for mixing with bitter or with stale? If not, does anybody have a fairly easy recipe for a more traditional mild beer for my purposes? Finally, I am at a complete loss for a recipe for making stale (sour) beer for making porter. The porter articles covered it in generalities, and mentioned innoculation with cultures to speed up the process, but I'd sure like to try it so the beer didn't have to age for a year, while maintaining a traditional flavor for comparison. Third and final questions: Should I start out with whatever recipe I use for the mild and then try to sour it? If so, does anybody have a recipe/procedure for turning it stale/sour? If you recommend a different base recipe, anybody have a good recipe for stale? Hal Davis The Safety Brewery, Plano, Texas member of the North Texas Home Brewers Assn Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 09:37:36 -0600 (CST) From: Hal Davis <davis at planolaw.com> Subject: Secondary fermentation in bottles? Greets, brewers and brewsters: Tim Plummer asked if secondary fermentation can take place in the bottle instead of in a carboy. I wrote him a private missive, but before I sent it I noted another question about secondary fermentation. Recognizing I am a newbie but do know a few things, I am posting what I think I know, but I'm ready for correction. Please be gentle in telling me I'm wrong. Dear Tim: You have fallen victim to sloppy terminology by brewers. We use the term "secondary" altogether too sloppily. The more common use of the term is referring to the racking of the fermenting wort from the first (primary) unpressurized fermentation vessel (usually a carboy for the home brewer) to the second (secondary) unpressurized fermentation vessel. This is done to remove the brewing beer from most of the hot break, cold break, and exhausted yeast cells. While it's universally regarded as a good idea to do this, it also carries risk of infection with bacteria because of the increased handling of the beer. Charlie Papazian in his New Complete Joy of Home Brewing ("New Joy") balances the equation that if you need to keep the beer fermenting for more than three weeks, you should rack to a secondary, but not necessarily at three weeks. That is, if the recipe says that it's likely to take longer than three weeks to ferment, you may want to rack to the secondary after the first few days or a week (after the foamy period is over). The second use of the word "secondary" is in secondary fermentation. Primary fermentation is done unpressurized (whether in a primary, secondary, tertiary, quaternary (and so on) vessel). I made a mead that I racked three times over a period of four months. Secondary fermentation is done pressurized, either in a keg or in a bottle. It is the ageing process, of fermenting some of the off flavors into more palatable compounds. An aged beer tastes better than a green beer because of secondary fermentation. Just to confuse things farther, adding priming sugar or malt extract to the beer in order to carbonate it does not DIRECTLY cause secondary fermentation. The sugar or malt extract undergoes PRIMARY fermentation, but releases CO2 gas which pressurizes the bottle/keg and carbonates it. This leads to favorable conditions for the secondary fermentation. You can just as easily leave out the bottling sugar and then force-carbonate your beer with a canister of CO2, and then let the secondary fermentation occur. OTOH, I confess to a fair amount of ignorance here, because my dry, still mead is ageing (undergoing secondary fermentation) in the bottle even though there is little or no pressure in the bottle. So, to at last answer your questions: Yes, secondary fermentation can occur in the bottle. Indeed, it must occur in the bottle or in a pressurized keg. The difference between storing in a secondary fermentation vessel and storing in the bottle is that the second will allow the beer to age and mellow. Storing in an unpressurized secondary fermentation vessel will allow the beer to finish its primary fermentation until it's time to bottle, while having removed it from the trub in the primary fermentation vessel, because the trub can cause off flavors if left in contact with the beer for too long. Hal Davis The Safety Brewery, Plano, Texas Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 09:42:50 -0600 From: Rust <rustwa at hqamc.safb.af.mil> Subject: Welcome Back/Call Oliver Stone/1002 Uses! Howdy All, Glad to see the Digest is back in action. I've been reading the last few issues from the HTMLized version, and things look a lot better. Kudos to the resurrectors. Get Oliver Stone on the phone, I think I may have another conspiracy. I live in the St. Louis area, and over the last few months I've noticed that every time I order a draft micro (I'm including Sam Adams with these, even tho I know...) I notice a distinct chemical taste. It's so strong that it renders the beers undrinkable. The other day I got yet another 'chemical' SA Boston Lager, and I asked the bartender for an Amber Bock in its place (an AB micro attempt). Lo and behold, even though it came from the same tap tower, it was free of the chemical after taste. It was then that I realized that at all the other establishments where I've noticed the off taste, the AB products were fine. Could AB be asserting its influence with the local distributers to 'infect' the local micro draft products by being less than careful about rinsing cleaning solution from some of the beer lines? As paranoid as this sounds, if you were from this area, you would be be amazed at the enormous influence that AB has over local business. It would not surprize me at all if this were indeed the case. This weekend I was trying to modify my Corny keg. I wanted to take about a half inch off the length of the dip tube to reduce the amount of sediment in my naturally carbonated draft beers. I was using a hack saw and I was having some trouble getting through the tube (no, I wasn't using a vise), and I thought, "Why not use my Dremmel tool, a 1001 uses right?" Took the end off like butter, and the grinder tip took the burrs off like a dream. Yet another cool brewer's gadget! Make beer not war! - ------------------------ Bill Rust, Master Brewer Jack Pine Savage Brewery http://www.i1.net/~wrust Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 12:08:45 -0500 From: oliver at triton.cms.udel.edu (Oliver Weatherbee) Subject: Re: Counterflow chill. cold break, house flavor Nathan wrote in part: >Does anyone out there that uses a counterflow chiller have a system for >removing break material from the fermentor? Yes, some break is good, >but I have heard too much (of any good thing) can be detrimental. I am still using an immersion chiller but have been thinking of building a counterflow one. One of the considerations as you mentioned is the carry over of cold break. I am considering two options. One is to use a pump and recycle the cooling wort back into the kettle until the wort is at pitching temps and then diverting it to the fermenter. With leaf hops this should create a good filter bed and prevent carry over of too much break material. The only drawback I see is the increased water usage. The other option I am considering would be to make the typical mason jar hop back, but put it after the chiller, prior to the fermenter, and thus filter out the break material there. My idea is to sanitise the jar, skim leaf hops out of the kettle to fill it, and then run the cooled wort through to the fermenter. I don't think I would want to waste fresh hops in the jar because I think little aroma extraction would occur from the brief interaction with the cooled wort. I suppose you could also try to fill the jar with two or three choreboys and a muslin bag/filter on the outlet. I think preventing the carryover of the break material is easier than using a settling "tank" (an interim container to allow the settling of trub) and then syphoning again to the primary. ______________________________________________________________ Oliver Weatherbee oliver at triton.cms.udel.edu First State Brewers http://triton.cms.udel.edu/~oliver/firststate/ _____________________________________________________________ Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 17 Feb 1997 13:20:25 -0800 From: Charles Rich <CharlesR at SAROS.COM> Subject: Munich malt and flaked maize In HBD #2349 Paul Sovcik <U18183 at UICVM.UIC.EDU> asks: > Has anyone used both Munich malt and Flaked maize in the same beer? > What were the results? Yes, I have with happy results. While pulling together my Fullers ESB clone recipe, I found two or three purported recipes for the real FESB from good sources. While not identical, the two best both used Munich and flaked maize (corn). I did too and had no complaints. I say go for it. Return to table of contents
Date: 18 Feb 1997 10:23:04 -0800 From: "Mark Tomusiak" <Mark.Tomusiak at amgen.com> Subject: Soapy beer and lurking nast Subject: Time: 8:44 AM OFFICE MEMO Soapy beer and lurking nasties Date: 2/18/97 Greetings all...I have a question regarding a specific off-flavor that has cropped up in two of my batches. I would refer to the taste as undeniably soapy. The only reference I have ever encountered regarding this flavor is with respect to autolysis, yet I doubt this is the cause as neither beer was sitting on sediment long enough to have this happen (5 days in primary, 2 weeks in secondary). I am guessing that this taste is a result of a wild yeast problem, which I seem to be engaged in a continual struggle with ever since moving to a new location (three years problem-free brewing in my old location). Despite rigorous sanitation, big starters, aeration, quick fermentation starts, etc., it seems that every other batch has some slight degree of off-flavors (soapy is fairly rare, but a subtle spicy, cinnamon-like taste is more common). The only visible symptom is that when I rack to secondary, I frequently observe a slight film on the surface of the beer (barely visible, except if you shine a flashlight on the surface and peer from underneath). Perhaps I should just skip the secondary? Any musings on these issues would be appreciated before I torch my new home. Thanks, Mark Tomusiak. Return to table of contents
Date: 18 Feb 97 12:53:04 EST From: "David R. Burley" <103164.3202 at CompuServe.COM> Subject: High Point Part 3,brewing way down under,skunkiness correction Brewsters: OK OK Even though no one pointed it out here,Thirty days hath September, January has thirty one, there are seven days in a week and the 15th of February is the THIRD Saturday of February. I jumped the gun on bitching about High Point Brewery not being responsive to PR. They weren't supposed to be there for a tour last Saturday. I screwed up. Greg Zaccardi did return my third phone call and I went to visit the brewery last night. As I suspected, I couldn't see the whole brewery through the window. HP does decoction mashing (one of the few in the US) and uses a German wheat beer yeast used no where else but at a single German wheat brewery and at High Point and a minimum of 50% wheat according to Greg. I also met Jeff Levine, Head Brewer, and the three of us shared some young blond and dark beers.These had the expected heads and lace of a wheat beer, unlike the beers I tasted in the bars. I think because of the youth, the Tettnanger hops were still pungent and the yeast gave a sharpness to the beer unlike any other I have tasted. As Greg pointed out - no esters were extant with this yeast. The beers I tasted locally in the bars and reported on previously were the "Crystal" which had been filtered,and had none of the sharpness or hoppy nose I experienced at the brewery. I was told Crystal was sold only locally in Butler and Kinnelon and were not distributed to other specialty bars. I intend to visit some of these other bars over the next couple of weeks and see how these other beers, like Blond, Brown, and Winter Bock beers fare commercially. I especially enjoyed Greg and Jeff personally and thoroughly enjoyed their enthusiasm for bringing a distinctive beer to the US scene. - ----------------------------------------------- Bruce Baker from Way Down Under in NZ asked about hops and about asking and answering on the HBD. > I've got a few questions that I hope you can help me with: > > 1. Is there a definitive table of hop characteristics out there somewhere, > describing aroma, bitterness, alpha analysis? > Charlie Papazian's New Joy of Homebrewing, page 74 and forward. Since I don't know if you can get a copy quickly , I will privately send you a scanned copy of the tables by e-mail, but I certainly do recommend you get a copy of this book and his Homebrewer's Companion for tables like these. > 2. Do US brewers use a US gallon for a "5 gallon batch" or are they talking > in Imperial gallons. Similarly, are Dave Millers gallons US or Imperial. U.S Gallons. 16 fluid oz to the Pint. In the US we say "a pint's a pound -the world around" not true, of course, the U.S. is the only place. 20 Oz in the UK for a pint. Our quart ( 2 pints) is a little less than a liter, so 1 US gallon a little less than 4 liters and 5 gallons is 20 liters almost. All US authors use 128 oz US gallons. British authors sometime give conversion from British gallons to US Gallons or dual recipes. Sometimes CGS or MKS systems are used. > 3. I tasted my most recent batch of Pils against three Czech varieties. > Mine was hoppier, had a finer head, and was quite pale. The Czech beers were > a nice dark gold, No doubt due to the long two hour boil and high pH mash > but were also a bit skunky -- even the ones in brown bottles. I think this is perhaps not skunkiness from light in some cases, but old Saaz hops we smell. I am currently trying to think of a definitive experiement. > They also seemed to have more body. Probably due to the hold temperatures which encourage medium weight proteins to be dissolved and a high temperature saccharification step. > From what I've read about lack of body, > it results from sparge water with too high Ph or temperature. Since I've only > recently learned about Ph, I can only presume that my Ph was too high. But > how can that reduce body? If I've got extra tannins, shouldn't there be too > much body? How can addition lead to subtraction? Tannins can react with proteins, come out of solution and with long lagering fall out of the beer. This can remove some proteins. Tannins also possess astringency which reduces the mouth fullness. > 4. As a newcomer to the HBD, I wonder about the protocols. There are lots > of questions asked with scarcely any replies. Too many replies to the same question is almost as bad as no reply. To my knowledge, no one is being snobby. Often answers don't appear because everyone thinks someone else will answer it. Ask it again if you don't get an answer the first time, or ask someone offline. > My earlier questions on yeast > received lots of private answers with even more private mailings requesting the > answers. Why don't answers go on the HBD? Is this because the questions are > deemed too elementary to answer? The other lists I'm familiar with (BBQ, > chile-heads) have a lot more answers. It's up to the author of both the question and the answer. No protocol that I've been able to discern. I vary myself, depending on my opinion of how generally interesting the answer will be to others and whether or not I want to get into a discussion on the subject privately. - ----------------------------------------------------- BTW I may have stated my opinion on skunkiness caused by light incorrectly or at least I confused people, based on private e-mail. I do believe that light can cause skunkiness. No argument. I just don't buy the mechanism suggested because my information is that iso-humulone doesn't absorb light in the visible region. Other chromophores, energy transfer or free radicals may be intermediates. Also, I suspect other observations of "skunkiness" are due to warm beer aromas, oxidation, old beer, etc. I'm thinking of an experiment at present to help sort this out. Other correspondents have provided me with literature references which I will gather up and comment. Any thoughts definitely appreciated. - ------------------------------------------------------ Keep on brewin' Dave Burley Kinnelon, NJ 07405 103164.3202 at compuserve.com Voice e-mail OK Return to table of contents
Date: 18 Feb 1997 11:47:54 -0700 From: Dave Hinkle <Dave.Hinkle at aexp.com> Subject: Draught Guinness & porter connection? Alex wrote: <<Thanks to Rob for posting the interesting Wheeler thread on the history of porter. I was struck by the apparent similarity of Irish draught stout, particularly Guinness, to the description of some porter styles brewed in the waning days. I understand that some of today's stout brewers, including Guinness, were originally porter brewers.>> When I was in Ireland last June, many old-timers in the pubs called Guinness porter, not stout. Remember, stout is a relatively modern term used to abbreviate the original term (A Guiness marketing term in the late 1800s) "Stout Porter". Guinness always made "porter", didn't they? From Wheeler's writings, it is apparent that Guinness was making "entire", not "London Porter", but I believe the Dublin brewery started up mass-production after "Porter" was falling out of fashion in London? Also, I find it quite interesting that in England you can still request a "black and tan", or in Ireland a "half & half", you know, the mixture of pale ale and stout (porter). The origins of this mix are much more apparent to me now thanks to Rob posting Wheeler's writings. For those who haven't been fortunate enough to have Guinness in the mother land, it is quite different than the versions exported to the US - much less "burnt/bitter" tasting. It's dry, slightly tart, very dark but NOT completely opaque. I understand that the sour (& pale) beer is blended in at kegging / botttling time, so would this make it the last "entire butt" still being made today? I seriously doubt that black patent and/or chocolate malt (or crystal for that matter) were ever used in "true" porter, either the London style or the Entire, although Wheeler indicates unorthodox ingedients were used in smaller country breweries to make porter "taste-alikes". Seems like a pale & roast mix was and still is the best approximation of using all brown malt, though rations of pale to roast vary from 80/20 to 90/10, depending on who you ask. I have a feeling that many US brewers (pro and amateur) have a mis-conception of what a dry stout (porter) should taste like, based on all the ones I've tasted since my trip. The notion of porter in the US seems to mean a sweetish, dark and malty ale, but totally different from stout; have we gone amuck in our style categories? Perhaps our current AHA porter style should really be called "country porter", considering all the unusual ingredients seen being used like licorice, molases, honey, etc.? And "stout" should really be "porter", with sour beer blended in as being definitive? Those of use who were confused about porter now can have good reason to be! (a little knowledge is dangerous...) On a related note, I know that the St. Francis Abbey Brewery in Kilkenny, where Smithwick's and Kilkenny Irish Ale are brewed, is owned by Guiness, but I wondered if anyone knew what year Guinness bought the operation. Are the Murphy's and Beamish breweries still independent, or are they owned by larger interests now? If anyone can share some of the history of breweries in Ireland, I'd love to hear from you. One last question, is Kilkenny Irish Ale the export version of Smithwick's Ale, or are they different? I can't seem to get either in the US. :-( Dave Hinkle Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 13:10:16 -0800 From: charlie <charliep at aob.org> Subject: Re: AOB/AHA:The $100,000 Question I can recall the days when the American Homebrewers Association was inspired. There was a lot of homebrew, laughter and great ideas. One of which was the AHA. I was teaching children in a private school in those days as well as teaching homebrewing every Monday evening to hundreds of people in Boulder, Colorado. The idea of publishing a journal for recipes was a novel one, that both my buddy Charlie Matzen and I thought was a unique and perhaps fun quest. We thought about it for over a year before taking the plunge. Fully financed with about $5,000 of our own money we set forth on the endeavor that has become the Association of Brewers; an educational organization that has members in over 70 countries numbering over 27,000. I sometimes recall in disbelief that we had the balls to start this whole thing with absolutely NO business plan or vision other than "hell, we don't expect to ever see a million dollars in this business - let's have fun while providing seriously good information." Have a homebrew. I taught children for 8 years, starting at a salary of $2,700 a year. After 8 years I was earning about $11,000 a year. That was in 1981. I was 31 and that was the year I left teaching (I still immensely enjoyed teaching) to take a pay cut to $3,600 a year to do "this beer thing" we now call the AHA/AOB. For those of you who are aware of the personal attacks on me, I must sincerely admit I am very uncomfortable defending what I hear has been said about me (I haven't personally read these messages, but have been told about their general nature). I don't feel it necessary to defend my personal lifestyle, philosophy, reasons for being involved in the beer business, my salary, or my position at the Association of Brewers. I've been very happy being involved with the Association of Brewers for 19 years now. I feel extremely fortunate that I still love what I do. I'm fortunate to have a great Board of Directors and supporting staff that has allowed me to pursue new ideas and the dreams I have for the Association, while still maintaining my day to day contact with the operations. My job description has changed a lot over 19 years. From the time I use to paste up Zymurgy magazine with rubber cement and cut galley type with scissors to learning how to evolve as a manager to now serving roles of helping develop new programs and ideas that will best serve beer enthusiasts and brewers, hopefully for years to come. I still love what I'm doing and am still trying to figure out how to develop more of my personal life (life is not all beer and vittles). Trying to work less than 50 hours a week, reduce travels, reduce stress, be at home more, develop other interests, spend less time in bars (it's uniquely part of my job), enjoy my own homebrew the way most of you enjoy homebrew - with friends. In many ways I'm not too different than most of the people who are members, who work for living, build a business and care about the quality of their lives. There's really nothing in my life that I feel the need to defend. I enjoy it immensely and the fact that I've been part of a team here at the Association of Brewers that has helped increase the quality of life for millions of people in the United States and in other parts of the world. It feels really neat to have a great staff, supporting members who offer constructive comments and to see positive results. "It's cool." And I would wish this for anyone else who has the notion of helping others improve the quality of life. Homebrewing is fun. It was always meant to be. I know there are several individuals out there, pecking away at their keyboards who are NOT having fun homebrewing. Homebrewing for me is not about being angry. Our Association of Brewers was designed for people who enjoy the brewing industry - be it homebrewers, professional brewers, industry suppliers and beer enthusiasts (it may not be very meaningful to angry homebrewers). For those of you who are angry, thankfully for all of us in this country, you have the choice to stress, be angry and have a homebrew. You even have the opportunity to form the kind of organization that serves your own needs. It's a choice we all have. Finally, I'd like to tap out a few most important words of thanks to all those beer enthusiasts and brewers out there that provide the Association of Brewers the support and continuing confidence that has allowed us to provide the educational and informational services, products and events that millions of Americans have benefited from or have been touched by. It's kind of "cool" to be doing something for 19 years and still be enjoying the job and the people who are involved with the international community of brewers. Relax ... Have a Homebrew! Charlie - -- Charlie Papazian President Association of Brewers (303) 447-0816 (voice) 736 Pearl Street (303) 447-2825 (fax) PO Box 1679 charliep at aob.org (e-mail) Boulder, CO 80306-1679 info at aob.org (aob info) U.S.A. http://beertown.org (web) Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 97 13:01 PST From: cburns at egusd.k12.ca.us (Charles Burns) Subject: re: Blonde Ale Tim asks about a blonde ale recipe in hbd 2347. Here's one, leave out the strawberries and it makes a nice plain blonde. ======================================= Strawberry Blonde Ale (5 gallons) Original recipe as it appeared in July '96 Brew Your Own magazine: 0.5 lb 2-row pale malt 0.5 lb light crystal (15 to 20L) or cara-pils malt 1/8 tsp. winemaker's acid or citric acid 6 lbs extra light dry malt extract (or 6.6 lpbs extra light malt syrup) 1 oz mild flavoring hop (2-3% alpha) 10-14 g. dry yeast or liquid Wyeast 1056 4 lbs fresh strawberries 7/8 cup corn sugar Step by Step: Toast the pale malt in 350F oven for 15 minutes, then crack it coarsely. Steep the toasted malt along with the light crystal or cara-pils malt in 2.25 gals of cold water. Bring water up to 170F, remove the grains, and rinse them in a strainer or colander back into the fermenter with 3 or 4 pints of 170F water. Add acid blend or citric acid, and continue heating the water until boiling. Add extract or syrup to the kettle. Return to boil, add .5 oz hop such as Mt Hood, Crystal , or Willamette. Boil 30 minutes add another .5 oz of the same hop, boit 15 minutes longer, remove from heat and cool. Top up fermenter to 5.25 glas, cool to 75F and pitch yeast. Ferment through the primary stage as usual (a bit on the cool side, 65F to 70F). When ready to transfer to the secondary, prepare strawberries by immersing them for 10 minutes in 160F water then cooling rapidly. Place berries in bottom of your secondary, rack your beer onto them (avoic splashing - strawberries tend to emphasize stale flavors created by oxidation), then age for about a week. You can rack this beer into a third vessel for a few days to give it a better chance of clearning. When you are ready to bottle, prime with corn sugar. Age no more than two weeks and consume quickly. The delicate flavor of the strawberries will fade in the bottle. Here's what I did: substituted 9 lbs of 2-row malt for the extract combined cara-pils with 2-row in the mash mashed for 30 minutes at 132 mashed for 60 minutes more at 152 added toasted malt into the lauter tun at lauter time Used Saaz hops at 2.88 (.5 oz 60 min, .5 oz 15 min) Added 1 lb raw honey at end of boil Froze strawberries 24 hours before secondary Cooked strawberries in 170 degree heat for 20 minutes Used Wyeast 1056 11 days primary 1 week in secondary 1 week in tertiery Kegged and force carbonated. It tasted great, but it never did clear, even with polyclar in the tertiery. OG 1.052 FG 1.005 Called it my Honey Berry Blonde Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 15:22:51 -0600 (CST) From: korz at xnet.com Subject: rack off hop pellets?/bottle fillers/iodophor More very old topics... Tom writes: >I am an extract brewer and my question is, should you or shouldn't you rack >the wort off the hop pellet and/or spice-herb residue from the boil before >primary ferm.? You're probably better off racking off of that stuff. Personally, when I used pellets, I simply used a large polyester hop bag for the hops and added 10% more hops to compensate for the bag. After the boil, you simply remove the bag and, with it, about 95% of the pellets. There will be no noticeable bitterness further extracted from the hops... no, that's not the problem... the only problem could be when the pellets rose up on the kraeusen they could help clog the airlock/blowoff tube. That's about the only reason to bother removing them (and an easier time racking once the beer is done). *** Jacques writes: >Results: less airspace in the bottle, less foaming during bottling, the >beer keeps fresh a lot longer , and...the judges give a higher score. >IMHO the comercial bottle fillers using a spring valve create too much >oxidation and foaming >I hope this helps. Less headspace is fine for counter-pressure-filled, force-carbonated beer, but that's not what's being discussed here. This post was about filling bottles with primed, uncarbonated beer for bottle-conditioning. If the beer is uncarbonated, it should not foam upon filling unless you have a very large height difference between the top of the beer in the source container and the bottom of the filling tube. A large height difference means that there will be a lot of pressure (head) and the the beer will go into the bottle with great force (and significant oxidation, true). I've used an orange-tipped, spring-loaded filler for nearly 10 years and my beers have been remarkably free from oxidation problems (one notable example was an 18-month-old, 1.034 OG, English Mild that made it to the 2nd round of the AHA National Competition). I believe that that the key to my success is that when I siphon the beer into the bottles, I raise the bottle and filler so the bottom of the filler is just below the level of the beer in the source containter so that the flow is very slow until the bottom of the filler is covered with beer. Then, I lower the bottle and filler so the filling doesn't take an hour. Granted, when you remove these fillers, there is quite a bit of headspace left, but I don't think it is a problem (judging from my experience). There si one other think that should be considered when it comes to small headspaces. Experiments that I (and others) have done and posted to the HBD indicate that a high fill (less than 1/2" or about 1.25cm or so) results in much slower carbonation and possibly even a lower final carbonation level. See the archives for details -- search for "fill AND carbonation" -- I'm pretty sure this search has already been done before. *** Patrick writes: >I am finding it difficult to locate iodophor here in Australia. I >just noticed that the active ingredients were listed in my brand-new >copy of "Brew Ware", so I am considering getting the iodine and >phosphoric acid and making my own. There is more to iodophor than just free iodine and phosphoric acid. While some iodophors do have phosphoric acid in them, the "phor" in "iodophor" stands for "carrier" an not "phosphoric." The iodine is bound up in a carrier (the one I use says: "Butoxy polypropoxy polyethoxy ethanol-iodine complex and polyethoxy polyproposy polyethoxy ethanol-iodine complexes"). The carrier slowly releases free iodine as the iodine it gets used up. You can probably get iodophor from restaurant supply stores or maybe stores that cater to dairy farmers. Just be careful to not get the type that has lanolin in it (e.g. "teat dip"). Al. Al Korzonas, Palos Hills, IL korz at xnet.com Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 97 13:32 PST From: cburns at egusd.k12.ca.us (Charles Burns) Subject: Best Porter for Style Demonstration Thanks to Rob Moline and Graham Wheeler for the wonderful writeups on Porter. I get to do a dog/pony show at next months homebrew meeting about Porter. What are the group's feelings about which Porters I should bring for sampling? Charley Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 21:46:41 GMT From: mra at skyfry.com (Matthew Arnold) Subject: Stupid newbie tricks Greetings, fellow HBDers! Please help out a poor, confused newbie. I made what was intended to be an extract IPA with the following recipe. It was my second-ever batch. 3.3 lbs Gold Northwestern LME 3.3 lbs Amber Northwestern LME 1/2 lb Maris Otter 1/2 lb 40L Crystal 2 oz. 7.7% AAU Perle (60 mins) 1 oz. 5.5% AAU Cascade (15 mins) 1/2 oz. 5.5 % AAU Cascade (5 mins) 2 pkgs dry ale It is not bitter. At all. With that much hops in it (BTW, due to a miscalculation in the amount of sparge water to rinse off the specialty grains, this ended up being about a 3.5-4 gallon boil). I put the hops in a little "tea bag" my wife made out of scrap linen. It's about 6.5" x 5". I used it to avoid getting the wort filled with hop pellet floaties. The 2 oz of Perle became quite water logged and almost filled up the whole bag after the 45 minute point came to add the 1 oz Cascade. I just ended up chucking the last 1/2 oz into the brewpot because there was absolutely no way it would get in the tea bag. Question 1: Did this destroy my hop utilization to the point that the beer isn't at all bitter? Question 2: How much water should I use to sparge the 1 lb of grains? Question 3: My grain bag isn't particularly fine. The grains stayed in, but I shook all the husks out beforehand to avoid floaties/tannins, etc. Is this OK, or should I get a bag with a finer mesh? Question 4: Is my grain bill adequate for an IPA? My OG was 1.038, once again, I think too much water took it's toll. FWIW, my first batch was a simple 3 gallon Pale Ale: 3.3 lbs Gold LME, 1 oz Cascade (60 mins), 1/2 oz Cascade (15 mins), full 3 gallon boil (down to 2.5 gallons). It was quite bitter and I liked it alot. Used the tea bag for this as well. In the end, I have a pretty respectable Amber Ale, but it certainly isn't the hoppy IPA I was shooting for. Any hints or suggestions would be appreciated. I now return you to the Home Botulism Digest, Matt Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 17:55:29 -0500 From: Bob McCowan <bob.mccowan at bmd.cpii.com> Subject: Homemade EM >Any EM, whether home-made or not, need to sit a few inches above the bottom >of the boiling kettle (not so in the mash tun) so as not to pick up any >break material or other scum. A few inches from the bottom! If you're using a half-barrel keg as a boiling kettle, you're going to leave a *lot* of wort behind. Put the EM on the bottom and use whole hops. The hops will filter out the scum and give you a nice clear wort. >My biggest concern still exists though. The >stainless screen I have to construct this with is a very fine mesh, but >also quite sturdy. I still don't see how it will not be crushed by the >wieght of a 20# grain bill without any frame to support it. Am I worrying >to much? Yes. Roll the stuff into a cylinder and see how much it takes to crush it. With an EM design, I bet the mash is nearly self supporting; the EM is just a tunnel. Bob - -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Bob McCowan ATG/Receiver-Protector voice: (508)-922-6000 x208 CPI BMD fax: (508)-922-8914 Beverly, MA 01915 e-mail: bob.mccowan at bmd.cpii.com Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 14:09:31 -0800 (PST) From: Scott Goeke <sgoeke at fhcrc.org> Subject: Lots O' Trub Howdy! I am a somewhat experienced brewer with a new development I'd like some info on from the rest of you out there. While aerating my current batch of brew (an Alt with seven pounds of fermentables), it foamed rather considerably after I slipped and it fell on its side and rolled for a ways. everything seemed fine, but I noticed that I've got at least twice the amount of trub as usual. Should I worry for my poor beer? Scott Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 17:35:47 -0500 (EST) From: Richard Seyler <tad at bimcore.emory.edu> Subject: what else? botulism/mash methods In response to wonderment by Mark Taratoot, Energo Ed stated: >Mark Taratoot wonders: >>I am specifically suspect of the outright claim that temperatures above >>240F are REQUIRED to kill clostridium spores. > >You should be, because it's 121 deg celsius. (~250 deg F) Actually, it's not so simple as that. A wide range of factors affect the heat stability of Clostridal spores. Water, fat content, salt, other solutes, pH, microbial concentration, organism age, presence of inhibitory compounds, and duration of treatment must be taken into condsideration when calculating the temperature REQUIRED to kill the spores. Additionally, the strain type must be considered. One way to measure heat resistance is by thermal decimal reduction values (D values). D values are the time duration in minutes required to reduce the population by a factor of 10. That is, it is the reciprocal of the slope of the survival curve. So, if 10^9 spores are present (very unlikely), heating for 10 times the D value would be suffcient to inactivate all the spores. The non-proteolytic strains generally have thermal D values, at less than 85C, of less than 2 minutes. For example, C. botulinum type F non-proteolytic spores heated to 82.5C in phosphate buffer or crabmeat had D values from 0.25-0.84 minutes (1). The greatest heat resistance I have heard of for botulinum spores was for proteolytic type A spores where at 110C D values were just under 3 minutes in phosphate buffer (2). To add to the nice summary and reasonable advice offered by Jack Mowbray who wrote in HBD #2888: > >2) Temperature, water activity, pH and the presence of oxygen all have an >impact on the growth of C. botulinum. > >3) The reason there is a concern with low acid canned foods is because they >are stored at room temperature, have a pH above 4.6, have a water activity >(more on that later) that supports bacterial growth and anaerobic >conditions. > >4) #3 is the reason it is necessary to kill C. Botulinum spores. I would emphasize that C. botulinum is very non-competitive, too. That is, the cells seldom grow very well in the company of other bacteria (there are a few exceptions). This is another reason botulism is associated with low heat canned food, where most all of the competing flora is killed. This is also why infant botulism occurs, there is little resident microbial flora in the intestinal tracts of infants, allowing germination, growth, and toxin production of C. botulinum. >5) Foods that are acidified (ph below 4.6) can be rendered shelf stable in >boiling water baths at atmospheric pressures. True, as long as no heat resistant organims that raise the pH are present. >6) Refrigerated temperatures, pH lower than 4.6, water activity below .85 >and the presence of oxygen (any one or a combination of these) will >prevent the germination of C. botulinum spores. While it is true that most C. botulinum strains require water activities in the 0.94-0.97 range, there have been reports of growth and toxin production in broth by non-proteolytic strains (Types B and F) at temperatures as low as 3.3C (3). The proteolytic strains (which tend to be the ones that produce more heat resistant spores) are generally less tolerant of cold and will not grow at temps below about 10-12C (2). >Bottom line: If you want to preserve wort so that it is safe to store at >room temperatures, you should pressure can it. Otherwise, just keep it in >the refrigerator and it will be just fine. There is no need to reboil >before pitching. Thanks, Jack; good advice. References: 1. Lynt, R.K., et al. 1979. Heat resistance of nonproteolytic Clostridium boutulinum type F in phosphate buffer and crabmeat. J. Food Sci. 44:108-111. 2. Jay, J.M. 1986. Modern food microbiology. 3rd ed., Chapter 19 Food poisoning caused by Gram positive sporeforming bacteria. Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, NY. 3. Solomon, et al. 1982. Effect of low temperatures on growth of nonproteolytic Clostridium botulinum types B and F and proteolytic type G in crabmeat and broth. J. Food Protect. 45:516-518. - --------------------- I have seen somewhere on the web, a homebrewer's site describing a mash system where the mash is recirculated through a copper coil in the hot liquor tank, for temp boosts. I am interested in hearing from anyone who uses this method, or the location of the web site. I am interested in setting up something similar but I have questions including: How hot do you maintain the hot liquor tank? How long is the coil and what's the rate of flow through the coil? I have been using direct steam injection with good success but have noticed an astringency in my lighter beers like cream ales that I think may be attributable to the steam. My crush is coarse, the pH never gets above 5.5, I don't oversparge, my sparge water is 170F, my pH strips and thermometers have been checked against our lab equipment; I can't think of anything else. Single infusions seem less affected than beers with a lot of steam heat steps, and beers with a lot of wheat, rice, or corn are less affected (no husk material). Anyway, I thought I would play around with another heating system (mashtun is a 10 gal Gott) so I am open to suggestions. TIA! - --Tad Seyler <tad at bimcore.emory.edu> Microbiology & Molecular Genetics, Emory University, Atlanta GA. Return to table of contents