HOMEBREW Digest #2784 Sat 01 August 1998

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		Digest Janitor: janitor@hbd.org
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  Re: not re: better starter methods (Alan Edwards)
  UK Beer (Michael Josephson)
  Forced ferment / pitching temps / corny to corny transfer (George_De_Piro)
  whining #1 (Jim Liddil)
  whining #2 (Jim Liddil)
  Spelling schmelling (Al Korzonas)
  New Belgium's brewing equipment (Headduck)
  Re: Phil's Phalse Bottom (smurman)
  Wheat Beer flavor profile (Don Sawchuk)
  Another Chlorine/SS observation; TSP Removal ("Houseman, David L")
  priming problems/Alexander's syrup/draught system balancing (Al Korzonas)
  Phils Phloating Phalse Bottom ("Houseman, David L")
  sherry/maple syrup/beerstone/corking/aerating starters/CP-fill/fruity (Al Korzonas)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 08:58:15 -0700 (PDT) From: Alan Edwards <ale at cisco.com> Subject: Re: not re: better starter methods | I asked for better starter methods. Alan Edwards responded that he had a | simpler method. I critiqued the method and Alan responded indignantly. I wasn't trying to be mean-spirited. I was using your post as an opportunity to emphasize in public the differences in goals that some of us have--and I'm sure a lot of other people. It seemed like you missed my point and I used your response to emphasize the differences between "optimal" and "adequate". I am not refuting your, or anyone else's method, for those looking for optimal solutions. It was nothing personal at all (or else I wouldn't have posted it to the HBD.) My first post wasn't really a reply to yours at all. I'm sorry you took it personal in the first place. I used your question of a "better start method" to springboard in a different direction: simpler. I thought that that was clear by the text of my post. But I should have changed the subject line also. I was afraid that the people who just want to brew excellent beer and keep it fun and easy might become put off by all of the technological discussion of optimizing the process. So, I wanted to point out that you don't have do things "optimally" to make great beer; and to say "hey, it's OK to have 'fun' and 'easier' part of your goals". We are touting different approaches and goals, for different audiences. | Commecial practice would require about a 2L starter for ales. 0.8L is | marginal, particularly w/ extract which tend to be low in amino acids. | I said 1+L would be better, not that 1L is adequate. If you have never | tried adequate pitching levels don't knock it. | | >If you perfectionist types want to step up your starters four times | I can taste the differnce Alan. That's the bottom line. Ad hominem attacks | ('you perfectionists') just display that you can't support your point by | evidence. Maybe you 'lazy types' should try a commecial sized starter for a | change. You can taste the difference? I'm interested in this. You did comparisons? I have an open mind. Convince us "lazy types". What are the specific advantages to pitching 2L of starter as opposed to .8L? What is your evidence? If the evidence is clear that a different method will significantly improve my beer, then I am *always* up to trying it out. In fact, that is what brought me from stove-mashing extract to where I am today in my brewing process. Some things I try and really see the difference (eg. CF chilling); and some things I determine aren't worth the extra effort or expense (or loss of predictability in the case of no-sparge brewing); so I go back. | >But what I'm saying is that you don't *have* to go to all that trouble | ... | >Two words: diminishing returns. | We agree again, 75% of the advantage is available by stepping up to a | 1qt starter, like yours. There is no doubt. Why leave the other 25% | on the table Well, my reason in this particular case is that I don't want to affect the recipe with too much starter volume. If I have to start worrying about the wort that makes up my starter, then I have to make my process even more complicated and save or can wort from a similar batch and use that as a starter, instead of simply using light dry malt extract, which is easiest. I suppose one possible compromise would be to step up the starter to 2L and then only use the percipitated yeast for pitching. But that has been debated also: do I use the yeast (which is already tired and sitting on the couch) or use the young active yeast that is in solution? | >; but if I always make great beer, then isn't that "adequate"? | Depends, could you make greater beer with a little more effort ? True. | >> Pitching the dregs from several bottles of SNPA is also a formula for | >> more serious underpitching problems. | >Pitching the dregs of a few bottles of beer into an 0.8L starter *may* | >be asking for problems;[...] | | In your original post it appeared that the footnote about pitching the | dregs of a few SNPA was IN PLACE of creating a starter, which others | have advocated here. Not as a method of creating a starter. NO!! I would NEVER do that!! Sorry I wasn't clear. What I was saying was that yeast from a bottle of commercial beer (or homebrew) can be pitched into the starter wort, instead of buying a yeast pouch from the store. | More important -Try a full sized nutrient added starter sometime - you might | really like the result. Tell me what it would do for me. -Alan Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 10:50:39 -0400 From: Michael Josephson <josep999 at concentric.net> Subject: UK Beer Hi all, I'm a relative newcomer to brewing and a first-time poster. I've fallen quite far behind in my HBD reading, so I realize that my post is not as timely as it should be, but I've seen a number of posts inquiring about beer in the UK and wanted to share an experience. In June I spent just over a week in England. And while in Yorkshire (Haworth, to be specific, walking through the moors is quite wonderful), I had some of the best beer I have ever had. It was brewed by a small regional brewery called Timothy Taylors. The brewery is located in the neighboring village of Keighley. I've been really interested in the Porter style recently (my last 2 batches have been a 1.60+ porter that I've named Big Butt Ale), and Taylors had the only cask-conditioned porter that I found in England. It was incredible. A nice, dark mahogany color with deep red highlights, a thick mouthfeel, chocolate and coffee flavours, with just enough hops to keep things from being to cloyingly sweet. If you ever find yourself in Yorkshire, seek out a Taylors Porter; you will not be disappointing. Also, if you are in Sheffield, be sure to visit the Fat Cat. It is a working-class pub in a highly industrial neighborhood that has a wonderful, local ambience. And they brew their own beer. The beers are quite good, and the brewmaster is more than willing to talk to visiting, rebel brewers. I hope I haven't wasted to much bandwith. :) Cheers, Michael Black Cat Brewing St Paul, Minnesota Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 13:06:48 -0700 From: George_De_Piro at berlex.com Subject: Forced ferment / pitching temps / corny to corny transfer Hi all, Peter responds to my post about forced fermentation of a sample from a stuck batch. I said to just add some dry yeast to the sample and let it finish to determine the final gravity of the batch. Peter said: "Except that there is known to be different attenuation rates for different yeast." I brew 15 gallon batches and almost always split the batches into smaller ones that are each fermented with a different yeast. I have never measured a difference in final gravity between two different brewer's yeasts. I know that wild yeasts super attenuate, and there are probably some brewers yeasts that may behave very differently from others, but I have not found them. Even ale and lager yeasts have ended up at the same gravities when pitched into the same wort. I think the mash parameters have much more of an influence on the attenuation than the yeast strain (when using your average yeast). ------------------------------------- Dion asks about pitching temperature, wondering if perhaps the concern about pitching at cool temperatures (at the fermentation temp or even lower) is overstated. If I could only atemper my ferment for 2 days (because Danny had read the meter wrong and we were going to use more electricity than a model energy conserver would use), I would choose to keep it cool at pitching and during the first 2 days. That is the most critical point in the fermentation. It is in this time that the production of rather unpleasant levels of fusel alcohols and solventy esters can be dramatic. The reason is simple: high temperature = high yeast growth = high levels of fusel alcohols and esters. It's as close to a "rule" as you get in brewing. If you keep the ferment cool early on, you inhibit yeast growth. Once fermentation is approaching completion, there will be little yeast growth, so you won't do as much damage letting the young beer get warmer at that point. Of course, I'd prefer to keep the beer at a reasonable temperature throughout its entire life, but sometimes that isn't possible. -------------------------------- Badger asks about transferring beer from one corny keg to another. The technique is easy, and can be kept relatively oxygen free: Sanitize 2 "liquid out" fittings and some tubing that will join them. Also sanitize the receiving keg and purge it of oxygen using your favorite method. Seal the receiving keg. Reduce the pressure in the full keg so that flow isn't too violent. Attach the liquid out fittings to both kegs. Put a "gas in" fitting on the receiving keg and beer will start to flow into it as the gas flows out. You'll have to keep a little bit of CO2 pressure on the emptying keg to keep beer flowing with a blanket of CO2 over it. Voila! Have fun! George De Piro (Nyack, NY) PS: If anybody got the reference about Danny misreading the meter, you're possibly more damaged than I. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 10:28:05 +0000 From: Jim Liddil <jliddil at azcc.arizona.edu> Subject: whining #1 > > Karl Lutze wrote: > Well, Jeff, it has been my experience with TSP that it will etch glass > and ceramics. It says so on the box. Take a look at your box of TSP > and see if it says this. It does depend on the concentration of TSP and > length of contact, so you have been lucky up to this point. As for > removal, I think you're stuck with an etched carboy. Sorry. I have talked to Corning as well as a company that makes the etching compounds used for glass. All the people I talked to indicated that etching glass (either soda lime or borosilicate) is difficult to do. Etching refers to a process where one selectively removes glass and causes it to become uneven in texture (the frosted look). Things like NaOH and TSP will not selectively dissolve glass. What is likely happening is that the TSP is cleaning the glass so well that the various scratches are now becoming visible or the TSP is not being rinsed completely along with various minerla deposits from the water. I did a sinlge test with a drinking glass (soda lime). I cleaned it with chromic acid and then added 2 tablespoons if analytical grade TSP to 50 mls of ultrapure water. I left it on the bench for 3 months covered with foil. I then let it evaporate and washed the glass. I saw no evidence of selective etching. Only one test of course. > > Goerge DePiro wrote: > Oh, heck, enough dramatics. The answer to all of the above questions > is "No." Charlie can determine his final gravity even at this point. > Simply perform the forced fermentation on the young beer. Remove ~100 > mL sample from the fermenter using aseptic technique. Pitch in a > packet of dried yeast (don't rehydrate in water it or you will be > diluting your fermentation sample and get an erroneously low gravity > reading). Let it ferment out at 80F or so for a couple of days (just > to be sure). Measure the gravity. Simple! > I asked Lyn Kruger at Siebels about doing alot of things on a homebrew scale. If you don't have enough of your primary yeast on had then use dry yeast. She said that all you need to do is add two packets to 200 ml of wort and put it on a stir plate for 5 hours and it should be done. The best way is to add about and ounce of yeast slurry though. She also recommended a stir plate as a easy way to propogate yeast and keep it aerated during the whole process. It's what they do. > > Hollen wrote: > For the past 40 batches I have been very careful to pitch between 70 > and 75F as I have heard is correct. Today, my water supply was warmer > than normal and my CF chiller only managed to cool the wort to 82F. > Well, I pitched anyway. As normal, within an hour, I had activity in > my blowoff hose. So, the higher than normal pitching temperature > appears to have been OK for the yeast. High pitching temps whether ale or lager lead to rapid growth and an overload of the yeast metabolic pathways. This leads to increased SO2, acetaldehyde, hihger alcohols, esters, diacetyl and glycerol. > > Steve Alexander Wrote: > > Pitching Rates - > The recommended yeast growth rates are that ale yeast should grow by ~8-10X > and Lager yeast by 4-5X. This would argue in favor starters for 5gal (20L) > of 2L for ales and 4L(1gal) starters for lagers!! This is about double the > recommended rates suggested by many HB books, and probably double again what > many HBers practice. High pitching rates *may* cure lag, but primarily it > should help reduce flavor byproducts due to excessive growth. Note that > overpitching is reported to lead to autolysis - perhaps since the yeast > multiply but use up all the sugars before replenishing their glycogen > reserves. > Perhaps this explains why autolysis is relatively rare in HB. According to Lyn Kruger during class and over a few glasses of Guiness the most growth you want for ales and lager, regardless of scale (5 gallons or 900 barrels) is a ~3X. A yeast cell in ideal condition hits the fermenter with 1% sterols, each division reduces this by half. Yeast with 0.25% sterol are at the minimum level one wants ideally. The lag phase is an adaption period and if the yeast come from an environment of proper nutrition and good aeration then the adaption phase is shortened. Is autolysis rare in homebrewing? Without doing viability staining this is purely conjecture in my view. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 10:28:38 +0000 From: Jim Liddil <jliddil at azcc.arizona.edu> Subject: whining #2 > > Kris Jacobs asks about Pyrex carboys in HBD 2777: > -snip- > Does anyone know of a good source for these, the "holy grail" of > carboy-dom? A local friend of mine has a couple, and it's AMAZING to > see hot wort go straight from the boiling kettle into a glass vessel > sitting in a tub full of ice water. Borosilicate is not totally immune ot thermal stress. It is more resistant to ti than is soda lime glass. It is simply a matter of time and stress cycles before these carboys experience cracking from this heat/ cold stress. I've seen grad students cringe when they plunge a hot erlenmeyer into an ice bucket and have their solution trickle into the ice. :-( > > Al K wrote: > > That "millions of barrels" experience suggests to me that he was > brewing Industrial Light Lager (maybe not... maybe he was brewing in > Germany). In Industrial Light Lager, one reason for the corn and rice > is as a *protein dilutant*. Could it be that this instructors' view > that Irish Moss is not needed be due to the fact that the American > Industrial brewers handle protein reduction in a different way than we > homebrewers? Now that I think of it, even the German brewers would find > less use for IM... decoction mashes (yes, the more modern breweries are > going to infusion and direct-heat mashing) extract a lot more polyphenols > than we typically do (when we watch pH and sparge temp) and so they have a > lot more protein reacting with polyphenols in the kettle. Finally, > the long lagering times they use are partly needed for clarification. Germans are not allowed to use IM under the Beer Purity laws etc. Also most homebrewers use more hops (hop heads, lower utilization) so there are more polyphenols in HB to react with the protein. And again the philosophy that Paul as well as other at Seibels presented was that one should be doing all the corrections up stream. A clear brilliant wort and a good kettle break. For me this involves simple using some pH strips and a 35K burner. some simple recirculation. In the past this was careful pouring but I now have a perstaltic pump. > > In my experience (and I did a series of side-by-side boils with varying > amounts of Irish Moss), the correct amount of Irish Moss improves clarity > and yeast flocculation *significantly*. According to my research, I believe > that for refined, flaked Irish Moss, 1/4 teaspoon is proper amount for > average-gravity extract beers and 1 teaspoon is the proper amount for > average-gravity all-grain beers. Increased gravity means you need more. > How many of those instructors and brewers at Industrial breweries have > done side-by-side boils on all-malt worts with varying amounts of Irish Moss? > My guess is none. I'll ask about what has been done in the pilot brewery. So you did all these experiments with the exact same lot of malt and hops and yeast strain with the exact same recipe three times each? And then by t-test you had "significant" results with a p-value less than 0.05? :-) Why should using Irish Moss effect yeast flocculation? Irish moss is for proteins. Unless it gets carried over into the beer. > > For as much heat I'll probably get for questioning the accuracy of methods > and information presented at Siebel, I say nobody's perfect (including me) > and there is the possibility that those at Siebel using the Clinitest have > not fully investigated the range of sugars that do and don't cause a positive > reaction. I'll offer that if they had, they probably would not use it. Joe Power worked for Miles Labs at one time (the makers of clinitest). They are aware of this. They use it as a quick and easy way to see if a fermentation is done. Nothing else. They also do force testing on the batches. They also have a Paar Beer analyzer which tells you everything about the beer. They choose to use the clinitest because it is quick and easy. They stack the deck in their favor by propogating their yeast in an optimal manner and using good brew house practices and pitching proper amounts of yeast with proper aeration etc. > > Let me ask you this, Jim did you mention to them the fact that the pH > is physically lower at higher temperatures and if you did, what did they > say in response to that? I asked about pH during a roudtable session. Thus I got input from the various lab people at Miller and a number of the instructors (Power, Zastrow, Kruger, Larson). After the session we got ou MB&S science and the ASBC methods book (p 279 in MB&S) and discussed what was done. The concensus was that pH is measured at room temp. This is what is done in the brewhouse at Miller and the labs. Power also started in on a AJ Delange type lecture on pH, mv, temperature, nernst equations etc. I mentioned to him that I was familiar with all of this. Zastrow also said that when he measured pH early in his career he did it at room temp. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 12:41:57 -0500 (CDT) From: Al Korzonas <korz at xnet.com> Subject: Spelling schmelling Had Mark Twain and I met, I don't think he would have considered me a limited man. I can spell it two ways: Tripel and Triple (Flemishr/ French/English). "Trippel" means nothing in any language. It is an error by someone who recalled the two B's in Dubbel and extended this to Tripel. Now, to explain my reason for objection to this mis-spelling, suppose someone consistently started using these spellings: Pilsaner, Stowt, Portur, Lambike, Rouch, Altbeir, Heles, Dunckle, Wiezen, Oktoburfest... ... and suppose *other* people started using these spellings. Next thing you know there's a Beer Style Series book on Colsh! I am not the world's greatest speller either and I didn't single out any one person... there were a whole bunch of people who used that mis-spelling in the last month. I mean you no harm... Al. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 14:38:51 EDT From: Headduck at aol.com Subject: New Belgium's brewing equipment Jim Busch wrote: <<I visited Jeff at NB in '91 when he was still using his tiny 4 BBl home/basement system. (in fact in this very basement I got the connection for the fabber in Oregon who made my kettle and mash tun). This was a very creative system, fabbed locally in Denver. His fermenters were square sided SS with "cones" made from triangle cuts! Not a typical cone at all. It worked and made good beer and I saw on Usenet that someone is still brewing in this in Co! >> Coincidentally, I recently stopped in at a very small brewpub in Nederland Colorado and talked with the brewer. He is using this very same equipment. It is a very interesting little (emphasis on little) brewhouse. The name of the brewpub is the Wolf's Tongue Brewery nd if you find Nederland you can find it. The brewer was very congenial and gave me the 5 minute tour because I looked interested. He makes a very good IPA (Mr. Hoppy) and a good Coffee Stout. Joe Yoder Lawrence, KS Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 11:48:56 -0700 (PDT) From: smurman at shell5.ba.best.com Subject: Re: Phil's Phalse Bottom > It's easy to say that the false bottom is "poorly designed", but that is > simply not true. That size you bought is just not big enough to fit in > the Gott 10 gallon cooler correctly. <snip> > Is there one available that fits correctly in a 10 Gallon Gott? If so, > point me at it; I'll buy it. If not, I'll weight mine down, thank you. > > -Alan There are sizes made specifically to fit the 5, 7, and 10 gal. Rubbermaind/Gott coolers. I bought the appropriate size. Got it straight from the man himself. It doesn't work. No matter the size, it's still made of plastic. I've been told that with pumps these work better because the pump can suck out the grain the gets under the false bottom. I bought a $20 spring-loaded bottle philler at the sime time. It doesn't work well either. I don't use either any longer, and my homemade equipment doesn't float, stick, put air in my bottles, or beer on my floor. I'm not trying to slam the company, but that's been my experience. If anyone wants a spring-loaded copper bottling doohicky, drop me a line. SM Return to table of contents
Date: 30 Jul 1998 15:10:18 -0400 From: Don Sawchuk <dsawchuk at ford.com> Subject: Wheat Beer flavor profile to: post@hbd.org "I've brewed a few batches of wheat beer this summer and have been somewhat unsatisfied with the results.,,, For example, there isn't really any banana or clove-like flavors,,,." Like Tom Barnet, I also have had the same situation. I remember the Wyeast Weihenstephan being dated April 21, 1998 and taking longer than 5 days to 'grow' to more than the stated 1 inch .(packet being popped the end of May). I made three 5-gallon batches, 2 from the original package with stepped up to a 1-quart starter in both cases, and 3rd batch using slurry from first batch. They all fermented, primary and secondary, at a constant basement temperature of 65 degrees. Used wheat DME and steeped some additional crystal and some 2-row pale malt as an addition. Now at 4-5 weeks since bottling, the beer tastes very 'normal' except for not having the flavor profile of Weihenstephan , no banana or clove-like character as I remember having 2 years ago when I used this type. What gives? Anyone else out there with same problem? Regards, DON at at F.O.R.D. in FORD country Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Jul 1998 11:08:40 -0400 From: "Houseman, David L" <David.Houseman at unisys.com> Subject: Another Chlorine/SS observation; TSP Removal I'm out here on vacation, reading HBD off-line and read the chlorine/ss thread. While I don't dispute the erosion of ss by chlorine, and don't use it on my kegs, as I'm sitting here I find it curious that the swimming pool, so high in chlorine, has all these stainless steel fixtures like ladders, railings, etc. emmersed in the chlorinated water. My experience says that water high in phosphates will etch glass, at least that has occured in my dishwasher when I've used dishwasher fluid high in phosphates. I've used TSP to clean but have rinsed immediately and have not let it sit and soak for any period of time. Dave Houseman Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 15:12:00 -0500 (CDT) From: Al Korzonas <korz at xnet.com> Subject: priming problems/Alexander's syrup/draught system balancing Some of these questions date back three weeks, but I wanted to get caught up before I started answering them. Actually, my "pending questions" file was much bigger... I removed many that had been answered by others. Martin & Christine write: >Lately we have had a few batches that have had very little head to them > after opening the bottles. We have been using corn sugar instead of sugar > for priming the bottles. What seems to cause the low out-come of fizz on > our heads. Is it that we don't use enough corn sugar? Or should we go > back to the regular sugar? Or is the time that we keep our brew in the > bottles? We usually are putting about a tablespoon of the sugar to that of > a bottle. Is there some way of measuring this to proper priming? Sucrose (table sugar) gives slightly more carbonation per gram than dextrose (corn sugar). The conversion is actually grams_corn_sugar = 0.94 * grams_table_sugar As for why you have not been getting a good head on your beers, it could have to do with many factors. Are you waiting long enough? You should give the beer 2 or 3 weeks at room temperature to carbonate. Are you carbonating at the right temperature? Lager yeast can and will carbonate at 45F, but if you suddenly toss them in the fridge, you can shock the yeast and it could take months to carbonate. I carbonate all styles at room temperature and then chill back to storage temps. Note that if the bottles are sitting directly on a cement basement floor, they could be much colder than the surrounding air! Is the problem carbonation or head? If it's fizzy, but headless (Pepsi head) that means that your beer is short of proteins (too much refined sugar in the wort, long 122F protein rests, bacterial infection, too low OG, several other factors). Are you overfilling the bottles? I've found that overfilling the bottles (let's say less than 1/2" headspace) will slow the carbonation process and may even decrease the final carbonation level too. Are you serving too cold? The colder you serve the beer, the more CO2 will stay in solution and the less will bubble out. That's why warm Bud foams out of can. Finally... as someone else posted, it's a good idea to measure out all your priming sugar and mix it with the beer in bulk. Yes, this requires an additional transfer, but it allows you to boil your priming sugar to kill most nasties and to make the sugar into a syrup that mixes easier with the beer. It's also easier to accurately measure 1/2 or 3/4 cup of sugar than 50 tablespoons into individual bottles. *** Peter writes: >From Greg Noonan's "Brewing Lager Beer" pg 261-2, the chart >labeled Density: > for a SG of 1.050 (balling 12.5) you need > 1.095 lbs extract per gallon. >1 lb 80% extract yields (1)(.80) = .8 lbs extract. (This is pure > solids with all water removed.) > >So for 5 gallons of wort SG 1.050, >(1.095 lbs)(1 lb syrup /.8 lbs extract) = 1.36875 lbs per gallon >1.36875 * 5 = 6.84375 lbs syrup. > >To make this easier: > (50 pts)(5 gal) / (6.84375 lbs) = 36.53968 pts/lb/gal. >So for an 80 brix syrup, use 36.54 pts/lb/gal and you will be very close. >ie: one can of Alex Pale at 4 lbs and 36.54 pts/lb/gal in 5 gallons total >volume is (4)(36.54)/ 5 = 29.232 SG. >Two cans becomes (8)(36.54) / 5 = 58.464. All was well until near the end. Peter assumed 36.54 pts/lb/gal for the Alexanders Pale Extract. As it turns out, Alexanders is the one extract that is *considerably* lower pts/lb/gal than all the others. Most dry malt extracts are 45 pts/lb/gal and most syrups are between 35 and 37 pts/lb/gal. Alexanders is only 33 pts/lb/gal! It is less dense than other extracts because it is concentrated less. Subsequently, it is also one of the palest extracts and has less caramel flavour than most (which may be good or bad, depending on the style, but it's far easier to *add* caramel flavour than to subtract it!). *** Paul writes: > In hbd 2760 and 2759 M. W. Bardallis talks about having to leave kegs >with a certain level of CO2 on them based on CO2 volumes in the beer. > > I have both hand held spigots and bar style taps for my kegs. Though the >hand held spigots can handle a higher dispensing rate than the bar style >taps, both styles can't handle a flow rate that is supplied by pushing beer >out at 12-15 lbs without forming a huge head. I dispense all my beers at >between 4 and 8 lbs, depending on whether I'm using hand held spigot or bar >style taps and the beer style. I never recharge the keg but if a long >period has passed (say a week) since my last pint from a certain keg, I will >let the excess pressure off the keg before pouring a pint. I have not >noticed any major CO2 level decrease in the kegged beer using this method. >Maybe I drink my kegs faster than others, but I don't think you really need >to store your kegs under a set level of CO2 to maintain carbonation levels >unless you are moving your kegs around. Agitated beer will outgass if the >pressure is not in equalibrium, but still beer doesn't seem to outgass very >fast...... Mike's right (how was Mt. Hood?), but so is Paul. CO2 is a very intersting gas (I'm told) because it does come out of solution gradually. Back when I wasn't storing hops in my chest freezer, I would have as many as four beers on tap at one time. Some of the stronger beers would last several months. If you consume the beer in a week, yes, you can get away with dispensing it at 6psi (depending on the temperature -- at 60F the beer would be virtually flat) if you cousume it fast. As for why you can't dispense at 12 to 15 psi, that's probably because your hoses are not long enough or are too large an inside diameter. Dave Miller's best work is the article he wrote for the 1992 (I believe) AHA Conference Proceedings. It was a talk on setting up a draught system and it was the first time I had seen the notion of balancing the pressure in the keg with a pressure drop in the hose. I've since seen this in commerical draught system equipment usage manuals, but Dave appears to be the first to introduce it to homebrewers on a wide scale. There was an article in Zymurgy a year or two later by Ed Westemeier in which Ed also described how to balance your draught system. The bottom line is: if you plan to keep your kegs for a number of weeks, you really should set up the pressure so it maintains the right amount of CO2 in solution and then set up your beer line hoses so that they are long enough to drop the pressure to nearly zero by the faucet end of the hose. Oh, and make sure you open the faucet all the way when you pour for two reasons: 1) the pressure drop is due to *flow* and if you have slow flow, you will have less pressure drop, leading to excess pressure at the faucet end, and 2) a restriction near the faucet will cause a huge increase in flow in a very small space and a subsequent sudden drop in pressure (venturi effect). This sudden drop will cause all the CO2 to come out of solution (this is the slow pour in German Pils). Al. Al Korzonas, Palos Hills, IL korz at xnet.com http://www.brewinfo.com/brewinfo/ Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 11:13:36 -0400 From: "Houseman, David L" <David.Houseman at unisys.com> Subject: Phils Phloating Phalse Bottom With the dialogue on this thread, I felt compelled to explain how I fixed this very problem. I have the larger (-est) Phils Phalse Bottom for my 10 gallon Gott. It would routinely float and the grains would get stuck in the out tube. Moving from a piece of fairly flexible tubing to a piece of copper tube with only very short connecting tubing just about solved the problem. It would still occasionally float. While the stiffness of the copper kept one end pinned to the bottom, the other end would float up. This was solved by cutting off a 1/2" piece of 3/8" tubing (same stuff we all have around for siphoning, etc.) and "glueing" it to the bottom at the edge of the bottom and the wall of the cooler, with FDA silicone caulk/glue (for aquariums). The forward lip of the phalse bottom sits just under this piece of tubing preventing it from floating up. I could have put them all around but didn't need to. Since the tubing is flexible, it's not hard to get the phalse bottom to fit under this "lip" or "hold down". Recently I also replaced the 3/8" hard nylon fitting on the phalse bottom with a 1/2" one from the hardware store (just had to Dremel out some of the phalse bottom) and then connected this to the outlet nipple with a piece of 1/2" rigid teflon (I think) tubing I had around to a 1/2" nipple/NPT connector. This is much stiffer than the old 1/4" copper with it's 3/8" tubing connectors. That sucker doesn't phloat any longer. And the larger outlet works well with a RIMS pump now. Oh, and don't forget to Dremel away some of the new nylon angle (1/2" NPT-1/2"Nipple Right Angle) so that wort can flow with the weight of grain on it -- see the design of Phils for this concept. Dave Houseman Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 15:59:10 -0500 (CDT) From: Al Korzonas <korz at xnet.com> Subject: sherry/maple syrup/beerstone/corking/aerating starters/CP-fill/fruity Peter writes: 2)Dave Williams has problems with sherry like oxidation: Tannins are responsible for the formation of these oxidation reactions. Really? Do you have a reference? I'd like to learn more about this. I know that certain oxidised tannins are the first step in permanent haze, but sherry-like flavours/aromas. I'm surprised I haven't read this anywhere. *** Dan writes: > I have also searched around about the use of maple syrup, the real >stuff, in beer and have found virtually none. I've been making a maple >porter myself for a few years and have managed some decent results. The >light smokiness of the syrup works wonderfully with a porter but it will >take some experimentation fto find what you like. > My process is to use about 1/2 cup of pure maple syrup per 5 gallon >batch of porter. <snip> I've found that it takes quite a bit more than 1/2 cup to get *any* kind of maple flavour/aroma in even a light-flavoured beer, let alone a Porter. I've used 2 quarts (about 2 liters) of Grade-B pure maple syrup (Grade-B is far stronger flavoured than Grade-A and is cheaper) in 5-gallons and it gave a very, very mild flavour/aroma. I believe that for a Porter, you can safely add a gallon (about 4 liters) of Grade-B syrup at the end of the boil. The use if maple syrup is written up in books... keep searching. *** Richard writes: >I've had similar problems with something I've been told is "beer stone". >I now clean my carboys with hot CLR (as seen on TV !), which, like >vinegar, is acidic, before I sanitize them. > >What is this "beer stone" stuff ? Beer stone is mostly calcium oxalate. Acids will indeed dissolve it. Vinegar is a good choice. Check the label of CLR and look for hydrochloric acid. If it contains it (as does Muriatic acid, by the way), then I don't recommend using it on stainless steel... all the discussions of bleach (hypochlorite) apply to hydrochloric acid. I've read (here in HBD) that you can have catastrophic failures in stainless steel if you use a strong enough hydrochloric acid. *** M writes: >In corking these bottles I use regular new straight corks. I check to make >sure all the corks are sound, no cracks or big spaces that might harbour >nasties. I soak and sanitize them for about a day using a crushed campden >tablet and water, holding the corks in that solution by trapping them under >a plate that is slightly smaller than my soaking vessle. This is from an old winemaking fallacy... campden tablets in water are ***NOT*** a sanitiser! Neither are pure metabisulphites. Both require an acid envirionment to begin to do anything and at that, the can only be counted on to be *INHIBITORS* of bacteria and yeasts, not KILLERS. I sanitise my corks by putting them in a plastic tumbler of boiling water and weighing them down with another similar plastic tumbler of boiling water. *** Michael writes: >I would advise against aerating >starters after the sugar is used up. This may result in some oxidation. >If you want to keep the yeast going, I would suggest adding more starter >solution as well as aerating your starter. The yeast will use up >additional oxygen more readily in the presence of sugar. This will also >increase the number of yeast cells you pitch into your wort and should >decrease the lag time. Sugars of various kinds are present in wort. Yeast >uses sugar in the presence of oxygen. Technically yes, but not necessarily the sugar in the wort. When you pitch yeast into aerated wort, they do indeed uptake the oxygen, but rather than using the sugars in the wort, they use their internal glycogen supplies first. As George posted, in the absence of wort sugar, the yeast will use up their glycogen and then not have any external sugars to replenish the glycogen. Glycogen-starved yeast are very poor fermenters, leave high FGs and produce increased levels of acetaldehyde and sulphur products. *** >The theory is that aerating >wort will give the yeast oxygen. This allows them to engage in aerobic >respiration, which is more efficient than anaerobic respiration. This >increases yeast reproduction and the number of yeast cells. This is >probably the main factor influencing decisions on wort aeration. This idea >is covered in at least twenty books on brewing including the AHA Style >Series and is a preferred method of shortening lag times. The problem is that *MOST* homebrewing texts say that yeast respire and the fact is that under normal conditions (thanks to the Crabtree effect) only a miniscule amount of the oxygen used by Saccharomyces is utilised for respiration... the vast majority is used for synthesis of sterols and other compounds essential to yeast health. *** Robert writes: >I am able to fill 50 bottles of beer with a loss of less than 4 oz. The beer >is also carbonated to the same degree that it was in the keg. It takes me >approx 1.5 hours to bottle a 5 gallon batch. > >For the sake of clarity, let's "label" the valves... > >"A" will designate the BEER IN valve >"B" will designate the GAS IN valve >"C" will designate the PURGE valve. > >It DOES help if the beer, (keg) is chilled but there is no need to chill the >filler or the bottles. > >Set the pressure at 20 psi. Have the keg at a lower level than the filler. The rest of Robert's post is excellent and very accurate, however, I must disagree with two points here. One is that chilling the beer (keg) is not just "helpful" but *ESSENTIAL*. You simply cannot do this at 65F no matter how careful you are. Remember my previous post where I mentioned that the colder the beer is the more the CO2 tends to stay in solution? That's exactly what is in effect here. In my opinion, 45F (7C) is pretty much the highest workable temperature and 35F (2C) is not too cold. Secondly, 20 psi may work great for Robert, but it could be terrible for someone else. At 35F, 20 psi will make gushers. Guaranteed! You need to get yourself a table of pressures vs. volumes of CO2 for various temperatures and get the beer to contain the proper number of volumes for that temperature. You'll be surprised at how few psi you need to get 2.25 volumes at 35F. *** Rob writes: >Cornish Brewery - Churchill Amber Beer > >English bottled pale ale. Peppery hop aroma, and pear-drop fruitiness. Malt >in the mouth, rich blackcurrant fruit finish with good hop note, so the >description goes! Recipe deleted except for: >Single infusion mash; top working yeast Sorry, but this is a pet peeve of mine... the author of the recipe (not Rob) may have gotten a "pear-drop fruitiness" and "rich blackcurrant fruit finish," but the odds that we would get that are 1 in 200 or worse. The yeast is what gives us that fruitiness and simply specifying "top working yeast" means that one brewer may get strawberry fruitiness, another banana, another mixed-berry, a fourth apricot... Please! Specify your yeast strain or source! Thank you for letting me vent. Al. Al Korzonas, Palos Hills, IL korz at xnet.com http://www.brewinfo.com/brewinfo/ Return to table of contents
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