HOMEBREW Digest #3001 Sat 10 April 1999

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

  Questions on priming and bottle cappers (WyteRayven)
  flat Bitter/infected beer/sanitation/sulphate/blowoff (BrewInfo)
  duration of amylase activity--a long boring post ("bret.morrow")
  Murphys/Heineken connection (revealed) ("PARKER,Myles")
  Ringwood yeast (Harlan Bauer)
  Slow run-off (Harlan Bauer)
  SW Lower Michigan Breweries ("Kris Jacobs")
  Unmalted Wheat/ Belgian White ("ajphoto")
  beer tasting. ("Rob")
  re:... I Spell Herrington ("David Kerr")
  Re: Rice CAP (Jeff Renner)
  Irish stout (Jeff Renner)
  ? on Jay Hersh web page ("Curt Speaker")
  glycerine (nie1kwh)" <KHarralson at ismd.ups.com>
  HBD3K ("Greg Lorton")
  Year 2000 and Mills (Jeff Berton)
  Re: planting time (B.R. Rolya)
  My trip to Bean Town ("Alan McKay")
  Bulk Malt extract in soda kegs (wkolb)
  Myths about Utah beer revealed (Jeremy B. Pugh)
  Re: Mash time ("Mark W. Wilson")
  Carboy vs. Demijohn (Michael Cukrow)

Beer is our obsession and we're late for therapy! Enter the Spirit of Free Beer! Competition 5/22/99. Details at http://burp.org/SoFB99. 2000 MCAB Qualifier! Enter the Buzz-Off! Competition 6/26/99. Details on the HBD Competition Calendar for June 1999 (http://hbd.org). 2000 MCAB qualifier! Send articles for __publication_only__ to post@hbd.org If your e-mail account is being deleted, please unsubscribe first!! To SUBSCRIBE or UNSUBSCRIBE send an e-mail message with the word "subscribe" or "unsubscribe" to request@hbd.org. **SUBSCRIBE AND UNSUBSCRIBE REQUESTS MUST BE SENT FROM THE E-MAIL ACCOUNT YOU WISH TO HAVE SUBSCRIBED OR UNSUBSCRIBED!!!** IF YOU HAVE SPAM-PROOFED your e-mail address, the autoresponder and the SUBSCRIBE/UNSUBSCRIBE commands will fail! Contact brewery at hbd.org for information regarding the "Cat's Meow" Back issues are available via: HTML from... http://hbd.org Anonymous ftp from... ftp://hbd.org/pub/hbd/digests ftp://ftp.stanford.edu/pub/clubs/homebrew/beer AFS users can find it under... /afs/ir.stanford.edu/ftp/pub/clubs/homebrew/beer COPYRIGHT for the Digest as a collection is currently held by hbd.org (Pat Babcock and Karl Lutzen). Digests in their entirity CANNOT be reprinted/reproduced without this entire header section unless EXPRESS written permission has been obtained from hbd.org. Digests CANNOT be reprinted or reproduced in any format for redistribution unless said redistribution is at absolutely NO COST to the consumer. COPYRIGHT for individual posts within each Digest is held by the author. Articles cannot be extracted from the Digest and reprinted/reproduced without the EXPRESS written permission of the author. The author and HBD must be attributed as author and source in any such reprint/reproduction. (Note: QUOTING of items originally appearing in the Digest in a subsequent Digest is exempt from the above. Home brew clubs NOT associated with organizations having a commercial interest in beer or brewing may republish articles in their newsletters and/or websites provided that the author and HBD are attributed. ASKING first is still a great courtesy...) JANITORS on duty: Pat Babcock and Karl Lutzen (janitor@hbd.org)
---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Thu, 8 Apr 1999 17:34:10 EDT From: WyteRayven at aol.com Subject: Questions on priming and bottle cappers Hi all, I have some newbie questions about bottling. I started a batch of cider that I am planning on bottling in the next couple of weeks (My last try was unsuccessful). I plan on using Grolsh bottles. I would like to have a sparkling cider, but I am not sure on how much sugar to use per bottle. I have also seen it mentioned that corn sugar or syrup should be used. Is this the corn syrup that one gets in the grocery store, or is it different? Is corn syrup better than table sugar? Is there a difference in how much sugar to use when bottling beer, wine or cider in the same size bottles. Will I need to add yeast to the bottles? If so, how much, and does it matter if I use a different yeast than what I used to ferment the cider? In the future I plan on trying to find smaller bottles. I am a very light drinker, and even using 12 oz bottles, much will get wasted. (Another reason I want to use the Grolsh bottles, since the are easy to reseal). Also, I am considering getting a bottle capper, and have seen one called the Black Beauty that can come with an attachment for champagne bottles as well. I think it is roughly $20. Has anyone tried this capper? Is it a good one? Easy to use? Or should I consider a different capper? One final question.....is it possible to brew beer in a gallon batch, rather than a 5 gallon batch. Are there recipes that are listed for a quantity this small. As I mentioned, I am a very light drinker, but would like to try brewing it. It sounds like fun, but 5 gallons would be a bit much. Dawn Watkins wyterayven at aol.com dawn.watkins at mci.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 8 Apr 1999 18:43:44 -0500 (CDT) From: BrewInfo <brewinfo at xnet.com> Subject: flat Bitter/infected beer/sanitation/sulphate/blowoff More ancient topics... Andrew writes: >Another way of dispensing real ale, occasionally seen in small country pubs >(the kind which consist of one or two small rooms) is simply by gravity. >These are called taprooms, and the casks are stored behind the bar. Instead >of pumping the beer up from the cellar, the glass is simply filled straight >from a tap attached to the cask. This often results, however, in VERY flat >beer - too flat for my taste. It all depends on the skill of the cellarman. What I know about cellaring I learned from reading the CAMRA guide on it, talking to several people at the Great British Beer Festival when I worked there one year and talking to Mark Dorber, cellarman at the White Horse on Parsons Green... oh, and personal experience with my beer engines... Actually, Mark Dorber has taught me more than all the rest combined. Basically, the idea that Bitter is flat is incorrect. Well-kept and well-conditioned Bitter should have a sparkle. In fact, a good cellarman should be able to get the beer to have a carbonation level approaching many commercial bottled beers! We're talking nearly 2.0 volumes of carbonation, although Mark hasn't been able to give me an actual number yet... there was talk about Steve Hamburg perhaps trying to put a pressure gauge on one of Mark's casks to see what kind of pressures are encountered (Steve, are you out there?). Certainly we don't want fizzy beer, but we also don't want flat. There still is a wide margin between 2.0 and fizzy beer, so why is it so difficult to get 2.0 volumes of CO2 into a Bitter? It's because the cask has live yeast in it. The cellarman has four primary jobs: 1. make sure no beer stays on tap too long (oxidation, spoilage, etc.), 2. get the beer to the right temperature, 3. get the beer to the right condition (carbonation level), and 4. get the beer to drop bright (get yeast to settle). #1 is a difficult problem because you are always juggling profit versus providing variety to your customers... it's why you will get a larger selection of better beer at a pub like the White Horse which is *known* for a wide selection of well-kept beer (more people come and drink more beer!). #2 should be no problem unless your cellar is poorly built or has unreliable cooling systems. #3 and #4 are intimately tied... if you condition the beer to too high a level of carbonation, the finings (Isinglass, typically) simply don't want to settle and you get cloudy pints. So, the job of the cellarman is to juggle #3 and #4 so you get clear beer at the highest possible (reasonable) carbonation. This is easier for some yeasts (i.e. for some beers) than for others, and it is the cellarman's job to know how long each beer needs to condition (and time the conditioning properly so there is a cask ready when the previous runs out) and on how much condition the particular beer will handle without being cloudy. Now, imagine doing this with beer from 30 or 40 different breweries (or 150 at the GBBF!)... Beer will typically be too flat when a cask is kept tapped too long. Ideally, you would like a cask to last but one day, although that's rarely the case. The casks should be hard-spiled overnight (and in a taproom, possibly between pours if the cask is a slow mover) and really should be taken off-line within a few days. Ooop... a hard spile is not porous (plastic or red oak) where as a soft-spile is porous (bamboo, often). Stronger beers can keep longer than Ordinary Bitters (the recommended number of days is published in some book, maybe the CAMRA Guide to Cellarmanship, but all my books are still packed in boxes). *** Vern writes: >Sanitation Violations: >1) Hairy arm inserted into cooled wort up to armpit prior to start of >fermentation looking for rubber thingy - no infection >2) No chlorine soak for 5 batches of beer bottles, simple rinse with tap >water - no infection in any bottle >3) 48 hour lag time - no infection >4) Wort cooled in driving rainstorm with no lid - no infection You have been blessed with good fortune. Actually, *all* our beers are infected -- yours, mine... everyone's. The key is that if we pitch large amounts of healthy yeast, they will overwhelm the wild yeasts and bacteria that would spoil the beer and don't allow them to multiply to numbers that produce *detectable* amounts of off flavours and aromas. In other words, your infections are below the flavour threshold, which is all that good brewers ask -- you, me, A-B, Miller, Weihenstephan... everyone. *** Jeff writes: >Water - Low sulfate water is important for a clean bitterness. If you need >to add Ca++, use CaCl2, not gypsum (CaSO4), which can give a lingering >harshness to the bitterness. I don't feel it is correct to say gypsum (sulphate (SO4), actually) adds harshness. Many Bitters (especially those from Burton-upon-Trent) have very high levels of sulphate (upwards of 700 ppm!) and aren't harsh (IMO). Granted, the bitterness from sulphate is slightly rougher than from soft water. In other words, a 30 IBU/700 ppm of SO4 beer *may* have a similar impression of bitterness as one with 45 IBU/10 ppm of SO4, because SO4 increases the perception of bitterness and causes the bitterness to linger in the finish, but the former will be a touch rougher and less "refined" than the latter. Personally, I love high-sulphate Bitters and once made a 15-gallon batch of IPA into which I put more than 1/2 CUP of gypsum (I weighed it out, but turned out to be > 1/2 cup). It's very true, though, that if you are making a low-sulphate style (like Bohemian Pilsener) that you want to use calcium chloride rather than gypsum for increasing the calcium/lowering the pH in the mash (note, that only after reaction with the mash will calcium lower the pH!). *** Mark writes: >ian smith asked about how to prevent losing beer due to blowoff. i use an >oversized carboy, 7 gallons, for primary fermentations, and there is plenty >of headspace to prevent any loss at all. there has been an increase in my >beers' head retention and hop presence, both bitterness and flavor, since >i've been using this method (about the last 15 batches). >the possible disadvantage is that the dirty krausen substances (break >material, hop residue, etc.) remain in the fermentor. some sticks to the >sides, but most falls back into the beer. this is true also for top >fermenting yeasts that floc to the top during the hop drive. i'll bet if i >backed down to a six gallon fermentor, i could have most of the dirty >krausen stick to the top and sides, or get blown out, along with some of the >top fermenting yeast, if applicable, plus lose less beer and foam-positive >material than in a 5 gallon carboy. I wrote an article that was published in Brewing Techniques (back in June of 1997, I think) that described my blowoff-versus-nonblowoff tests. In my experiment, I found very little protein loss (based on tests done at Siebel) and no noticeable head retention differences. I did note in the summary that if the amount of head retaining proteins was borderline, there might be a difference, but my worts (1.050 Americian Pale Ale and 1.060 IPA, if I recall correctly) didn't show a difference. There was also very little difference in higher alchols and esters. The only major difference was in bitterness (roughly 15% less in the blowoff batch). Blind tastings by BJCP and on-BJCP judges had similar findings (they were not told what the difference was between samples). Al. Al Korzonas, Lockport, IL korz at brewinfo.com http://www.brewinfo.com/brewinfo/ Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 28 Mar 1999 07:50:35 -0500 From: "bret.morrow" <bret.morrow at cwix.com> Subject: duration of amylase activity--a long boring post Greetings, The following is the results of a small experiment questioning the functional life of amylase enzymes in our mash tun. Please note that the primary issue is time, not the effect of temp. The "take home" message is that alpha amylase, at least, lives beyond the length of the average homebrewer's mash time (90 min). Introduction: Over the last couple of years I have asked the collective if anyone had supportable evidence on the live span of amylase activity in the mash tun (homebrewer's or otherwise) without receiving a definitive response. I was told by several including one homebrewer/author that the enzyme activity is short lived--but no supporting evidence could be provided. My concern was primarily focused on the necessary time for the mash. If the enzymes are gone shortly after starch conversion (about 30 minutes), why should I wait an additional hour? Alternatively, if mash enzymes die off before the end of the mash, I should be able to do an extended mash, ala David Line's overnight mash, and get a similar beer to what I get with the 90 minute mash. The experiment that follows was designed to determine what the functional life span of alpha amylase is in our mash tun. Methods: The mash was 10 lb. Briess Pale 2 row malt and 0.75 lb. Crystal (British, 60 lovibond) at 1.2 quarts water to each lb. grain. The mash temp was 152o F and the pH was 5.1-5.2. Previously, a barley malt starch solution was prepared by mixing hull-free pale malt with the mash water at a more dilute 2.3 quarts/lb. to allow easy of measure. This solution was held near boiling to eliminate an endogenous amylase activity. Equal portions of the liquid from the mash and the starch solution were mixed and held at mash temperature for 30 minutes after which the reaction was tested for starch content by the addition of iodine. Two controls were run along with each mash sample: 1) to test if the starch in the mash was converted, a portion of the mash was mixed immediately with iodine, and 2) the barley starch solution alone was held at mash temperature for 30 minutes then combine with iodine. This later control gave us a positive (blue-black) starch reaction to compare the test sample to. Mash samples were tested at 5, 15, 30, 45, 60 and 90 minutes. 2 people rated each sample. Results: The first control (mash liquid + iodine) indicated that the starch in the mash had been converted by 45 min. The reading at 30 min was described as "borderline" with probably only a little starch left in the sample. The samples tested after 30 minutes were all negative for starch. All samples of starch solution alone tested positive for starch, of course. The test samples (mash liquid + starch solution) all tested negative for starch. This indicated that alpha amylase activity necessary to convert starch to a carbohydrate not readily detectable by iodine is active in the mash from 5 to 90 minutes. Significance: These data indicate that Briess Pale malt has strong amylase activity that lasted through out the 90 minute mash. Briess 2 row generally has been reported to have very high diastatic power. No other malts were tested. The original goal was to test our usual malt--M&F Marris Otter, but it was not available at the time of the experiment. One concern is that this type of assay only tested for alpha amylase, and not for beta amylase. This limitation is of some concern--"conventional wisdom" states that if beta amylase activity continues as long as alpha activity then the number of complex sugars will be reduced in long mashes. However, this would require beta amylase to work at a much much slower rate than alpha amylase so that some more complex sugars remain at the start of the boil. Does anyone have hard data on the prescence of these proposed time dependent complex sugars in the wort or the fermented beer? It would, however, be difficult to measure these sugars and the net contribution to the final beer might be more difficult to assay. One of the original issues was this: can we extend the mash time without having "thin" beer. To more directly assess this point we have brewed a number of beers using an extended mash started at lunchtime and sparging about 6 hours later. These beers taste similar to beers made using a 90 minute mash schedule--no loss of body noted. The issue, again, is time not the temp. of the mash. For these reasons, we have put the amylase experiments on hold and, barring some contrary facts, feel that both amylase enzymes have done what they could by 90 min. Bret Morrow John Elsworth Hamden, CT Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 9 Apr 1999 15:03:36 +1000 From: "PARKER,Myles" <myles.parker at dewrsb.gov.au> Subject: Murphys/Heineken connection (revealed) All, in confirmation to Johns Adsits post and in response to Scott Bridges reply - go here; http://www.heineken.com/ or here http://www.heinekencorp.nl/ Myles Parker, Canberra Brewers Club, Canberra, capital city of the wonderful land of OZ (Australia) Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 09 Apr 1999 01:15:45 -0500 From: Harlan Bauer <blacksab at midwest.net> Subject: Ringwood yeast Dave Humes asks about the Ringwood strain. I've used it in 7-bbl batches and love it--it ferments very quickly, then drops clear. I got mine on slant from Dan McConnell at YCKCo. Great yeast--great price. I haven't noticed it to have excessive O2 requirements, but I also aerate in-line... Normal aeration should be sufficient, but this should be true with ALL your beers. Proper aeration should be an integral part of your process. Note that my experience with this strain is NOT on a Pugsley system, but in standard cylindroconicals--I've found no need for rousing, attenuation was normal, and harvesting yeast from the cone is a snap. As an aside, I'd love to try this strain in a large open primary and top crop, say 7-bbl's...;-/ Substitutes would include White Labs ESB yeast, Wyeast 1968, or any number of British top croppers. I've had good results with all the one's I've named. My current house yeast is the ESB from White Labs. In fact, I've currently got a batch of ESB in primary made with it--same recipe as one I'd made with Ringwood this past winter. The Ringwood seems to have been more neutral in flavor (signature), but it's really too soon to tell. Email me if you'd like to know more, Harlan. Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 09 Apr 1999 01:38:35 -0500 From: Harlan Bauer <blacksab at midwest.net> Subject: Slow run-off There have been a couple of posts on slow run-off. No mention of pH. If the pH is too high, ease of lautering will suffer. This high pH will carry on into the boil and retard hot break formation. After mash-in, how long does it take for the mash to become "slippery", indicating conversion? I've found that conducting the mash at optimum pH decreases the time required to reach this "slippery" stage. Hope this helps, Harlan. Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 9 Apr 1999 06:32:36 -0400 From: "Kris Jacobs" <jtsnake at net-link.net> Subject: SW Lower Michigan Breweries Jim Verlinde wrote: This was suggested by the brewer at Arcadia Brewing in Kalamazoo, MI who uses Ringwood in his ESB. Jim Verlinde Grand Rapids, MI Jim, Arcadia is in Battle Creek. ;) In Kalamazoo, we have Kalamazoo Brewing Company, makers of Bell's; Olde Peninsula Brew Pub; & Kraftbrau, makers of semi-decent German-style lagers. There might be a small BOP restaurant or two that I have missed, but those are Kalamazoo's "big three". :) Kris Jacobs Kalamazoo, MI Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 09 Apr 1999 09:29:29 -0400 From: "ajphoto" <ajphoto at columbus.rr.com> Subject: Unmalted Wheat/ Belgian White A few of our club members are getting together to make a Belgian Wit/White beer. We have made them in the past with moderate success. I've read that Decoctions and a 45 minute protein rest will help loosen up the mash. What about pre-boiling the wheat and/or oates before they enter the mash? Does unmalted wheat have enzymes? If not, then wouldn't boiling the unmalted wheat gelatinize it and make it easier to lauter? If I am not destroying vital enzymes I think I may give it a try, unless someone can steer me in better direction. A.J. Zanyk Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 9 Apr 1999 08:55:54 -0500 From: "Rob" <brewmasters at texasbrew.com> Subject: beer tasting. All this talk on tasting reminded me of when I went through the Siebel course. I was real hard to drink any of my beers when I returned home. I was ruined for at least 3 or 4 months on commercial beers. What I'm bringing up here is do you really want to know what all the off flavors are? Or would you like someone else be able to tell you what they are? I still can't enjoy allot of beers now that I know that I enjoyed before the course. I say enter the competitions let the judges taste the off flavors and enjoy your beers. Or take it to the poor sap who has torture him/herself on taking a tasting course. Oh yeah if you do learn any or all of the off flavors in beers be careful on how you tell fellow brewers. I've seemed to have lost a couple of friends cause I told them that such and such is wrong with their beer. :( I just told them what I would want to hear. And they wanted to know if something was wrong with them. Enjoy your beers, if it tastes good to you then that is all you really need. (Enter flames here) Rob Brew Masters 1-888-284-2039 www.texasbrew.com savebig at texasbrew.com Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 9 Apr 1999 10:09:38 -0400 From: "David Kerr" <dkerr at semc.org> Subject: re:... I Spell Herrington I thought that the original spelling looked a little fishy... Dave Kerr - Needham, MA Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 9 Apr 1999 09:35:04 -0400 From: Jeff Renner <nerenner at umich.edu> Subject: Re: Rice CAP "Chuck Mryglot" <cmryglot at Progress.com> asked >A while back there was some discussion about brewing CAP with rice and if I >remember correctly some folks were going to go off an brew up some. Anyone >have anything to report back on this.... Jeff Renner...are you out there? Right here! I haven't brewed it yet as I'm overflowing with other beers right now. But I'm having second thoughts after tasting another HBDer's corn and rice CAPs (he sent me a couple of bottles for evaluation). The rice CAP was really light in all characteristics compared to the corn (and extremely pale). I don't know the brew specifics, but at this point I thinks I prefer corn. I guess I'll do one still for research purposes, but probably a little later so it's ready for summer tapping. I think it will be a good picnic beer. Jeff -=-=-=-=- Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan c/o nerenner at umich.edu "One never knows, do one?" Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943. Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 9 Apr 1999 10:15:11 -0400 From: Jeff Renner <nerenner at umich.edu> Subject: Irish stout Michael Jackson's Pocket Guide to Beer, 6th edition, 1997 (p. 121) confirms that Murphy's is owned by Heineken and Beamish is owned by Scottish Courage group, one of the "Big Six" of Britain. jim williams <jim&amy at macol.net> wrote >Towards the end of this trip, I was drinking >Guinness from the bottle, which is still quite amazing. Does anyone know if it is still bottle conditioned in Ireland? I have conflicting evidence. Apparently it is not in England anymore. CAMRA's 1996 Good Beer Guide, p. 22 says that after April, 1993 Guinness "decided to sterilise, pasteurise, homogenise and do whatever else was needed to kill off ...". However, Jackosn (ibid) says "The bottle conditioned Guinness Extra Stout **** sold in Ireland best expresses the character (9.75; 1039; 3.4; 4.2). " These last numbers are deg. Plato; OG; ABV; ABW, showing that this is not the same as the stronger bottled Guinness sold in the US. I'll be going to Ireland in two months to conduct some research of my own. Jeff -=-=-=-=- Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan c/o nerenner at umich.edu "One never knows, do one?" Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943. Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 9 Apr 1999 10:31:31 +0500 From: "Curt Speaker" <SPEAKER at SAFETY-1.SAFETY.PSU.EDU> Subject: ? on Jay Hersh web page Has anyone had difficulty accessing Jay Hersh's Dr. Beer page. The URL is <http://www.tiac.net/users/drbeer>. I'm interested in developing a kit to doctor up some fairly lifeless beer (like Coors Light - gasp!) to help some folks in our club learn to better identify off-flavors and aromas. I have downloaded the Dr. Beer info from the Brewery web site, but some of the things listed there can't be consumed (i,e., add 10ul of phenol to the beer for phenolic profile - I don't think there is such a thing as food-grade phenol). I've got access to a lot of food-grade chemicals through the Food Science Dept. here at Penn State, just need to know which ones to use and relative amounts. If anyone can give me a clue about Jay's web page it would be most appreciated. Everytime I try to get it my web browser times out and I get an error message. TIA Curt Curt Speaker Biosafety Officer Penn State University Environmental Health and Safety speaker at ehs.psu.edu http://www.ehs.psu.edu ^...^ (O_O) =(Y)= """ Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 9 Apr 1999 10:41:56 -0400 From: "Harralson Kirk (nie1kwh)" <KHarralson at ismd.ups.com> Subject: glycerine There has been some recent discussion in the winemaking newsgroup about the use of glycerine to "smooth out" and add mouthfeel to wines. Needless to say, I am more than a little skeptical. Does anyone out there in HBD land have any practical experience using glycerine in either wine or beer? Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 9 Apr 1999 08:23:44 -0700 From: "Greg Lorton" <glorton at cts.com> Subject: HBD3K As I sit here reading HBD #3000, I'm relieved to know that the HBD3K bug didn't shut down my computer! and the power is still on! Cheers, Greg Lorton Carlsbad, CA Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 9 Apr 1999 11:23:37 -0400 (EDT) From: jeff344 at voodoo.lerc.nasa.gov (Jeff Berton) Subject: Year 2000 and Mills In HBD #2999, Jack Schmidling wrote: >Not sure what it means but in spite of mills popping up like >mushrooms and the rise of a few serious competitors, our >business has been virtually flat for years. Just curious -- have your mill sales increased at all due to the year two thousand eccentrics preparing for the post-apocalyptic world? Jeff Berton Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 9 Apr 1999 11:37:39 -0400 (EDT) From: br at interport.net (B.R. Rolya) Subject: Re: planting time Jay: I tried to send this directly to you, but the mail got returned. Since it's planting season, I thought I'd offer a few suggestions for city-grown hops. I have a few plants that have been doing quite well in 5 (?) gallon buckets (the white, food grade buckets that can be used as fermenters/bottling buckets). I don't think that you need to get 35 gal. cans (that's also *alot* of weight from soil, but I assume that if you already have a deck that you are aware of your roof's weight limitations). I punched holes in the bottom for drainage, and then added potting soil, mixing the top third with my standard potting mix: 2 parts potting soil (or 3, depending on the grade of soil) to 1 part peat moss. I also added some compost. I planted the rhizomes and watched them grow. I do fertilize with fish emulsion once in the spring when new growth appears, and then a few times over the course of the summer. I don't worry about pH (never have, unless I'm dealing with a really finicky plant). My hops are quite prolific with the minimum of maintenance. Hops are quite hardy; I neglected 2 plants on the roof of my office because they had been infested with spider mites and I assumed they would die over the winter. But last spring, after no winter protection and no watering except for rain, they came back like mad. (George de Piro and I recently co-authored an article about growing hops in one of our club newsletters; back issues can be found at http://hbd.org/mbas/ in case you want more information.) - B.R. Rolya Malted Barley Appreciation Society NYC Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 9 Apr 1999 10:43:18 -0500 From: "Alan McKay" <amckay at nortelnetworks.com> Subject: My trip to Bean Town First of all, let me thank everyone who replied to my original request. I got over a dozen responses, and am very much appreciative. Unfortunately my trip got cut short. I was originally supposed to fly in Wed evening for a Thursday course, then fly out Friday morning. Instead we flew out Thursday night. Also, it turned out that one of my co-workers had already made arrangements for Wednesday evening dinner. I was pretty upset about this because I really wanted to go to Redbones in Somerville, since it was recommended by more than half of the respondants. But I caved into my coworker, giving him the dire warnings "We'd better not end up talking business" and "they'd better have good beer". It was the East Coast Grille on 1271 Cambridge (on the Cambridge side) that we went to on Wed evening. Our plane got in at about 8:20, and we were checked in and at the East Coast's door at exactly 9pm. Fortunately they did have some good beers. Only 3 taps, but all microbrews. It was here that I first tasted "Tremont", which I proceeded to drink just about everywhere we went. Very nice beer. My friend JP Boileau from Montreal (currently living in SC working out of Atlanta stationed in Boston ;-)) met us there shortly after 9. Unfortunately Patrick Finn didn't show, or if he did, we couldn't find each other. You missed a good one, Patrick! Sorry you didn't make it out. The food at The East Coast Grille is easily 5 star! They specialize in Seafood and BBQ, so we indulged in both since the company was paying ;-) I had the Uncle Bud's BBQ platter, which had 3 types of BBQed meat, along with some BBQ baked beans. I have to say that nothing I've ever had before in my life came anywhere near close to this. It was culinary heaven all the way! I'm glad my mom doesn't read this newsgroup, because those BBQ Beans were almost orgasmic! Not only do they surpass my mom's beans (which have always been my hands-down favorite), but they leave them far, far behind in the dust. Of course, one of the co-owners has written a number of very popular books on BBQ, so that might explain a few things ;-) The other 2 beers on tap had freaky names which I don't remember. I really dislike the trend in our industry which feels the need to give long and crazy names to beers. No offence to anyone, but I find it really idiotic and annoying. One of the beer taps was a trout. Oh, I forgot to mention that my fears about talking business were put to rest when JP and I found out that both of the other 2 guys from work that I was travelling with were homebrewers! Go figure, eh? One guy said he'd been brewing since 1985. We finished up there at about 11pm, and decided to go over to the Cambridge Brewing Company on the MIT campus. JP lead us there on foot - it was about a 10 or 15 minute walk. Most of the chairs were up as it was late, but the bar was still open so we stayed for a round. The IPA was very nice. One fellow there asked us "If Canadians say "eh", and Mexicans say "si", why don't Americans say "B"". I thought that was pretty funny ;-) On Thursday was my course, but afterwards the 3 of us from work headed downtown into the Boston market area. We had dinner at a The Kansas City Steak House at Faneuil Hall. The food here was absolutely incredible as well, although it was considerably more expensive than The East Coast Grill (which was extremely reasonably priced). They had Tremont on tap, so I enjoyed it while the other 2 guys had some wine. Then we grabbed a cab to the airport, where we enjoyed some Sam Adams while waiting for our plane. Anyway, that's about it. All-in-all a very good time was had, and even though I didn't get to go to the places I wanted, I still got to enjoy some great beers, and some incredible food. cheers, -Alan - -- Alan McKay OS Support amckay at nortelnetworks.com Small Site Integration 613-765-6843 (ESN 395) Nortel Networks Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 09 Apr 1999 20:03:07 GMT From: wkolb at home.com Subject: Bulk Malt extract in soda kegs Some time back someone asked about storing and "serving" bulk malt extract from soda kegs and pushing it with co2. This sounds good to me but I never saw any replies. Has anyone done this? Do you have to use co2 pressure higher that the kegs recommended pressure rating to get a good flow? Any pro or cons much welcomed. Don't make me open a can of extract and push it though a keg just to find out how it works :-) Thanks Wil wkolb at home.com Happy Dog Brewing Supplies 401 W. Coleman Blvd Mt Pleasant SC 29464 www.catalog.com/happydog "We don't need no stinkin' born on date" Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 9 Apr 1999 15:05:17 -0600 From: jpugh at hjnews.com (Jeremy B. Pugh) Subject: Myths about Utah beer revealed In response to my recent post on Utah alchahol laws I received the following e-mail from George Marshall, Midwestern brewer: "I was reading your HBD post...and are you sure that you didn't mean 3.2% by volume? 3.2% by weight is around 4% abv." Thank you but no. I don't mean by VOLUMN. I mean by WEIGHT. And George, thank you for helping me prove a point. The statement above confirms my belief that everyone, including native Utahans, believe Utah beer has HALF the alcohol of "real" beer. I have made this same calcuation and come to the same conclusion, ergot that Utah beer only contains only about ONE-THIRD less alcohol than "real" beer. During college, my friends and I conducted a study to settle the on-going debate. However, our collection of primary data at bars and house parties until all hours of the night skewed our findings, preventing us from accurately measuring the difference from Utah beer and the supposed "real" beer. Once during the study, we wound up walking into this complete other study where we didn't know anyone. Unfortunately, it turned out to be totally lame -- most of the people there were in the non-drinking control group. We had fun for a little while busting on them, but pretty soon we split. Among the our team's findings: A 10-ounce serving of Jack Daniels can be consumed 30 percent faster when accompanied by shouts of "Go! Go! Go! Go!"; the bathroom at The White Owl is a popular place to throw up; and when Dr. Andrew Schmid drinks five Long Island iced teas, he lies down in the street and starts singing the chorus to The Dream Academy's "Life In A Northern Town" at the top of his lungs. Seriously though! A second study later in life determined very unscientifically that the perception of out-of-state beer being stronger comes from the way alcahol affects your body. Because drunkenness is a cumulative effect you begin to feel the effects earlier when drinking 6% abv beer but after 7-ish 3.2% abw beers your buzz is comprable to six 6% abv beers. It's a placebo effect. As in, "DUuude this Wyoming beer is getting me soo wasted." Perhaps someone can explain how large-scale commercial breweries seperate Utah beer from teh rest of the country when producing beer in, as the commercial says, vats the size of Rhode Island. I can't imagine they create a seperate "Utah batch." Jeremy B. Pugh Logan, Utah Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 09 Apr 1999 16:51:25 -0700 From: "Mark W. Wilson" <mwilson at ichips.intel.com> Subject: Re: Mash time Dave- > brewer and it is today. Is it worth the compromise? I doubt > it, but it does have some appeal to some people who can > devote shorter time slots to brewing. It is better to brew > than to not brew. I just don't see how overnight mashing saves that much overall time. I _can_ understand that if you're doing a 2-3 step mash or decoction, it could be convenient to break up the brew day. Assuming you sparge, you still have to wake up and spend 30-45 minutes heating your sparge water before you can runoff the mash. And I'd assume you also need to heat the mash to even begin recirculation (higher temp = better runoff). You can almost do a short 2 step infusion mash in the time it takes to heat your sparge water! (30 min protein rest, 15-30 min sac. rest) > Sorry, Mark, but I have met "professional brewers" who > have told me lots of things that were B.S. learned at the > knee of Charlie Papazian. This is one of them. I haven't read any of Charlie P.'s books for years so don't remember much of his advice. I'm going on personal experience. i.e., when I switched from 1 hour sac. rests to 15-20 min., similar recipies did not show much difference in extraction efficency when using shorter sac. rests; I average around 75-80% efficiency. > [Dave asks for details on my brewing process....] My short-mash beers are typically in the 1045-1065 range, one step sac. mash or 30min protein rest plus sac rest mash, _usually_ at high sac. temp, i.e. 152-154F (but not always). Usually no more than 10-15% non-malt/specialty malt grists. Portland, OR water is extremely soft, I rarely treat it besides maybe 2 tsp. gypsum in pale ales and 1 tsp. CaCl2 in malty lagers. My mash pH is always within 5.0-5.5 so I stopped measuring years ago. Gambrinus Pale is my main base malt, which is highly modified, but I've had good results with short mashes using 2-row pilsener and munich malts. > Is it worth the risk when you consider all the time this > whole process consumes? It's like the no-sparge argument; even if extraction is less efficient using a shorter mash, I'm getting getting better beer in less time. The only bad effect I can think of from short mashing would be haziness or harshness from unmodified starches, but I don't get this in my beers. The reason I started shortening my mash times was not to save time, but to get more body and mouthfeel from my beers; less time for the enzymes to break the sugars into smaller sugars means more of both. At any rate, sounds like an experiment waiting to happen. Brew the exact same beer, same mash temps, different mash duration. And, I'll try and dig up some comparisons in efficiency, etc. from my brew log. Cheers! -Mark Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 09 Apr 1999 23:17:44 -0400 From: Michael Cukrow <mcukrow at nac.net> Subject: Carboy vs. Demijohn In the hopes of expanding my brewing, as well as to take advantage of a great deal that I got on 5-month old liquid yeast, I went out with the intent of purchasing another 6.5 gallon carboy. On the advice of a friend of a friend, I checked out a different homebrew store which is roughly the same distance from me as the one I usually frequent. They did not have a 6.5 gallon 'carboy', but did have a 25L (roughly 6.5 gallon) 'demijohn', which came with a plastic basket that will make carrying it upstairs much easire. This vessel seems to be lighter than my glass carboy, but the guy at the shop assured me that it would be fine as a primary. Does anyone know what the difference between a carboy and a demijohn are? Also, more importantly, will a demijohn be suitable for use as a primary? Thanks in advance, Michael Cukrow Lake Hiawatha, NJ Return to table of contents
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