HOMEBREW Digest #4314 Mon 04 August 2003

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  RE: Top Twelve ("Steve Ford")
  Slow-starting Alt, 18-year-old beverage, 12 most influential (BrewInfo)
  aerating after fermentation (BrewInfo)
  Desert Island Sixpack (Alexandre Enkerli)
  Re: Tops in Homebrewing ("Richard Schmittdiel")
  Re:  Top Twelve ("eska")
  Re: authentic malt/cheaper kegging options (BrewInfo)
  beer colour estimators/Top Twelve (BrewInfo)
  Alt ("Patrick Hughes")
  Art v Science (12 rounds no decision) ("John Sarette")
  peated malt ("Buck Wilke")
  CAP question ("Steve Arnold")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Sat, 2 Aug 2003 00:01:34 -0500 From: "Steve Ford" <spare at kc.rr.com> Subject: RE: Top Twelve Good list Louis, I can think of a good regional group as well ... the Ragers, Susan Ruud, Jeff Swearengin, Bob Rescinito ... and I'll leave the list open for people who contribute a great deal in the plains states. For your national list my additions would be Louis Bonham (for his writing, speaking and contributions to the AHA and MCAB), Rob Moline (for all he contributes in addition to his work on the Lallemand Scholarship) and Jeff Renner (outside of Pierre Cellis, I can think of no individual more closely identified with a single beer style). Steve Ford KC Bier Meisters Overland Park, KS Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 2 Aug 2003 02:03:53 -0500 (CDT) From: brewinfo at xnet.com (BrewInfo) Subject: Slow-starting Alt, 18-year-old beverage, 12 most influential Regarding Mel's slow-starting Alt... underpitching seems to have been your problem, although it could also have been temperature shock to the yeast. You want to make sure that your starter is pretty close to your wort temperature. Attemperation is what Lallemand calls it and they describe it on their website. Basically, it's just doubling the starter volume with the wort into which the starter will be added. If the temperature difference is still a bit high, double the starter again after 10 or 15 minutes. I'd also like to point out that I would have used Munich in place of that 2-row (and probably in place of the Vienna too) and I would have used three times the bittering hops for a proper Duesseldorfer Altbier bitterness. Aroma hops would make it in line with a Sticke, not an everyday Alt. Flavour hops are un- necessary if you use the proper amount of bittering hops, because with 3 ounces of hops, you're going to get some spillover flavour no matter how long you boil. I'd go for either an 1.100+ Barleywine or an 1.100+ mead. One responder suggested Red Star Champagne yeast, but that's not necessary for high alcohol level. You can get 11%+ with wine yeasts that result in a much better-tasting and far less dry mead. I prefer Premier Cuvee and have gotten over 11%abv with it. Finally, I'd like to add Dave Miller and Greg Noonan to the list of 12 most influential people in homebrewing. The first book I read was Charlie's, but I soon followed up with Dave's and Greg's. While those of you who have been reading my posts over the years may be surprised that I would suggest them, since I've often been critical of their books. In the grand scheme of things, however, Charlie's, Dave's, and Greg's books taken together help one sort out what procedures are probably right and what procedures are probably wrong. Eventually, I ended up reading professional brewing texts, but probably would have never gotten that far without these three guys. Another person that must be mentioned is Rob Gardner, the original founder of the Homebrew Digest, back in 1987(?). Personally, the posts of Steve Alexander and AJ deLange have been very influential on my knowledge of homebrewing, far more so than just about anyone except George Fix. Al. Al Korzonas Homer Glen, IL roughly 200miles and 270degrees AR http://www.brewinfo.com P.S. Did anyone comment on my expired fridge? I didn't see any responses... or did I miss them? Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 2 Aug 2003 02:17:12 -0500 (CDT) From: brewinfo at xnet.com (BrewInfo) Subject: aerating after fermentation Ooops! I forgot to address the important question of the "stuck" mead. No... don't aerate. Aeration after even a moderate amount of fermentation will result in a lot of aldehydes from oxidised alcohols and will probably increase your diacetyl (hmmm... maybe not unpleasant in a mead...) considerably. Just leave it and let it ferment. I will drop slowly for months. One thing that I would not have done is add the acid blend. I had a discussion with Chuck Wettergreen about this and another one with Ken Schramm. The concensus is that acidity impedes fermentation. Ken suggested adding the acid after fermentation (and only if needed... some honeys are naturally acidic). Chuck went one step further and said he adds calcium carbonate to *lower* the pH whenever the fermentation slowed to a trickle. He claims that he could get a mead to ferment out very quickly this way. I don't know what this does to the ultimate flavour or the longevity of the mead, but I did taste some very drinkable mead of his that was very young. Al. Al Korzonas Homer Glen, IL http://www.brewinfo.com Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 2 Aug 2003 08:39:22 -0400 From: Alexandre Enkerli <aenkerli at indiana.edu> Subject: Desert Island Sixpack "mark_t at ix.netcom.com" mentioned this, in the context of the top personalities in HB universe: > I suspect this will be like the desert island sixpack that turns into > a case... Well, this must be a cyclical one, but maybe it's the time for it. A six-pack would clearly be too small so we could make this a row of six taps for bottomless kegs. Problem is, some beers are better bottled...And if the idea is having the beer that lasts the longest, we'll think of beer that keeps well instead of our actual favs. So...You're stranded on a desert island. What beer do you miss most, any category? And it doesn't need to be a *tropical* desert island. Could be a temperate one. And it doesn't need to be "the most delicately crafted beer ever," just the one that triggers reminiscence... As Julie Andrews would say: "These are a few of my favorite beers" Gillespie, tasted in Inverness on the day of the 1997 Spa F1 Grand Prix. (Not the best beer but we had a good time) (Local brewpub) Dieu du Ciel's Maple Scotch Ale, tasted the first time there. (Eventually turned me to homebrewing) Duchesse de Bourgogne, tasted at a local bar on the waiter's recommendation. (Turns out he was right) (Local brewpub) Cheval Blanc's Saison, which they had recently. (Great aroma) Leffe brune with mussels and fries at a Belgian restaurant (Moos in Quebec City). (The mussels were great...) A bottle of Trois-Pistoles (Unibroue) from a convenience store in a small village (Sainte-Luce, Qc). (Seems it *does* improve with time) Lex, in Montreal [555.1km, 62.8] Apparent Rennerian Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 2 Aug 2003 12:41:14 -0700 From: "Richard Schmittdiel" <schmitrw at earthlink.net> Subject: Re: Tops in Homebrewing Out here in So. Cal, one would have to include John Daume, the owner of a fine LHBS, and the sponsor/patron saint of the Maltose Falcons. John's homebrewing history goes back at least as far as that of the Falcons, back to 1974. Rich Schmittdiel Possum Holler Brewery (1935.7, 264.6 AR) Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 2 Aug 2003 19:08:16 -0500 From: "eska" <eska at isunet.net> Subject: Re: Top Twelve Egads... what a Pandora's box. Maybe Louis should have expanded the nominations to 20 or 25 like college sports or made the list personal favorites. Everyone mentioned deserves a nomination, but I can only speak for myself. My personal top picks would include Greg Noonan, Al Korzonas, Charlie P., any Brewrat but mostly Skot, Gump, any Classic Beer Style writers, Dr. Fix, Bill Pfeiffer (Ken Schramm can stand in now), Ray Daniels, and all of the nameless folks who have quaffed, scored or otherwise critiqued my beers and my lovely wife for sacrificing her kitchen in the begin when I was just learning and for kicking me out to the garage! Everyone listed has been most influential in teaching me how to brew better beer. A honorable mention to Louis for his personal impromptu lecture on no-sparge brewing via Gump's cell phone one cold February night a couple of years ago. Eric lost in BFE, no know Rennerian coordinates. Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 3 Aug 2003 00:54:02 -0500 (CDT) From: brewinfo at xnet.com (BrewInfo) Subject: Re: authentic malt/cheaper kegging options Stuart writes: >Secondly, in reading Fix & Fix's O'fest book - which stressed the importance >of authentic ingredients - I developed a dislike for recipes that subscribe to >this Malt Nazism. Why must people insist on Moravian malts, noble hops etc... > >What is everyone's experiences with "authentic" vs. local ingredients? Are you >a Malt Nazi, or a sacraligious heretic (like me)...? > >But, more than that, what makes you go authentic or local. For my part, I'm >relatively isolated, and a (poor) student meaning that I can't afford >authentic. Does anyone choose local deliberately in anachistic (or pioneering) >fervour? If I could brew, say, an Altbier, with malt that was made in Wisconsin that tasted like it was made in Germany, I would. For me, it's the results that are important and not how much I paid for the malt. However, I have yet to find a really really good Munich malt other than those from Europe and, incidentally, I thought that the DeWolf-Cosyns Munich was good until I tasted beer made with Weyermann's. Similarly with Pale Ale malt. I can make tasty bitter with US 2-row, but it doesn't have as biscuity and pastry-like flavour as I get with Munton's Maris Otter malt. I'd say that the difference between the garden variety Muntons Pale Ale malt and the Pale Ale malt made from Maris Otter barley is small, but still noticeable, altough, I guess it could have been relative freshness... the difference was small enough so that freshness could have played a role. When I first started all-grain, I brewed a series of batches using 100% Pale Ale malt from various maltsters. The range of flavours was stunning. Note that the worst of the bunch was the DWC Pale Ale... the resulting beer was terribly bland. Had I added 10% crystal or, say 5% Biscuit or Aromatic, I would think that the resulting beer would have been quite tasty. I still bought DWC, but used it sort of as a white canvass for painting beers with other malts... just a very neutral base malt. I don't think DWC is made anymore, by the way... can anyone confirm. I'd really only be sad to see their Aromatic and Biscuit malts disappear. *** I've seen a bunch of emails recently on cheaper kegging solutions. I would like to add one comment: don't get a 2-gauge regulator. I, personally, think they are a waste of money. The second gauge goes on the high-pressure side of the regulator and tells you the pressure in the tank. For gasses like nitrogen or oxygen, where the tank is all gas, it might be useful, but for CO2, which is a liquid in our tanks, it really only begins to drop when all the liquid CO2 has become gas and that's just a few pints from empty. I judge my tanks' fullness by weight (I have the empty weight (including regulator and hoses) written on the tank so all the excess weight is liquid CO2. A 20# tank weighs 20# more when it's full of CO2 than when empty. Al. Al Korzonas Homer Glen, IL http://www.brewinfo.com Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 3 Aug 2003 02:18:29 -0500 (CDT) From: brewinfo at xnet.com (BrewInfo) Subject: beer colour estimators/Top Twelve Actually, since beer colour is mostly transmitted and little or none of the colour is reflective, what you need is a colour measurement scale that is also transmitted. Dennis Davison (who seems to have fallen off the planet... where the heck are you Dennis!?), about 10 years ago, developed the Beer Color Guide. It was actually a piece of photographic colour film that was exposed such that it had 7 or 9 (I forget) squares of colour on it that corresponded to the colour of beer transmitted through a "standard" US competition plastic cup. These cups varied a little, but the differences were slight. You would hold up the beer and the guide and match the colour. You then read off the SRM (or was it Lovibond?). Dennnis made several hundred of these and probably gave out as many as he sold. Eventually, he grew tired of it and stopped making them. If he is still in touch with the homebrewing community, he might be convinced to give out his methods for making the guide. *** Top 12... After I posted my thoughts on the Top 12 most influential people in homebrewing last night, I thought about it some more and realized that I had to completely re-think my previous opinions on this topic. What I present below is my list of the most influential people in homebrewing. These are the people that influenced *me* the most or, more accurately, influenced my little corner of the homebrewing universe the most. Rather than alphabetise... I'm going to go out on a limb and post them in order of influence (in my opinion, of course). Here goes: 1. Charlie Papazian - I think that no person on the planet did more to popularize homebrewing. 2. Dave Logsdon - Founder of Wyeast. Before Dave, we had only a half dozen poorly-kept dry yeasts available. 3. George Fix - George was the first to bring professional brewing knowledge to the average homebrewer... he inspired me to seek out answers in pro texts and to create experiments if I couldn't find an answer in books. 4+5. Dave Miller & Greg Noonan - Although Charlie's "Relax, Don't Worry" attitude is great for beginners and perfect even for some expert brewers, I identified more with a scientific and analytical approach. Dave and Greg's books opened my eyes to that aspect of brewing. Although their books contained some errors, between Charlie's, Dave's and Greg's books, you could sort out what was probably right and your brewing experience made up the difference when information was lacking or all three disagreed on a topic. 6. Michael Jackson - Perhaps had Michael continued to write about court proceedings and not switched to writing about beer, someone else would have taken his place, but then maybe not. I feel that there's a good chance that we would not have as wide a scope of knowledge of beer styles nor an idea of the incredible variety of beer flavours possible in the world if not for him. Personally, I'd probably just be brewing Bitters and not tried brewing anything else. 7. Rob Gardner - Founder of the Homebrew Digest. Nuff said. 8+9. Pat Babcock & Karl Lutzen - If not for them, the HBD might just be history. 10. Pat Baker - Co-founder of the BJCP. Without the BJCP, I don't think that brewing would have improved as much as it has. I've been judging for about 10 years and I've seen the quality of competition beers increase dramatically. I attribute that primarily to the feedback that entrants get from BJCP judges. 11. J.X. Guinard - Author of "Lambic" in the Beer Style Series. He's the first person I knew of that really went into meticulous detail on the complexities of beer... the fact that it was Lambic made his job that much more difficult and that much more beneficial to us (most beer styles don't have 1% of the complexities of "production" of Lambic). 12. Jackie Rager - Jackie was the first person that I knew of that took a quantatative approach to bitterness. His were the first bitterness estimation formulae that I'd seen and they influnced the quality of my beers greatly. 13 through 24. Steve Alexander, Dr. Tracy Aquilla, Jim Busch, A. J. deLange, Dave Draper, Pierre Jelenc, Sam Mize, Cindy Renfrow, Charlie Scandrett, Mike Sharp, Glenn Tinseth, and Andrew Walsh. These people are in alpha order because it's difficult to say who taught me more over the last 15 years of reading HBD. If you took what these 12 people wrote in HBD and edited it into a book, it would be better than any brewing text currently out there. I've been out of touch for about four years and there may be others that are of their caliber (I've only seen a dozen posts from -S, and I can already see that they are in the same league), so I apologise if I've omitted someone on HBD who has been as forthcoming with top quality brewing information as this dozen. I'd like to add an honorable mention to Jack Schmidling and Dave Burley. Without them, I would have had far less fun on the HBD (and they taught me more than I'd like to admit to ;^). Al. Al Korzonas Homer Glen, IL http://www.brewinfo.com Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 3 Aug 2003 08:41:09 -0500 From: "Patrick Hughes" <pjhinc at eriecoast.com> Subject: Alt I have been to the Fatherland and fell in love with Alt. Frankenheim is an average axample of a generic Alt . But I have to offer an opinion that many American craft brews are over the top. And many homebrewers and Judges have palates that have been abused by these beers. Any exceptional German beer or any beer IMO] is about balance. In my experience the flavors are balanced, complex , and subtle. Even in an Alt with a high IBU value. I drank from a fresh of keg of Alt in an unofficial after hours keg changing ceremony in Germany [ probably the best beer I have ever drank ] and have been trying to replicate that taste ever since. I recently made the Sticke Alt recipe in BYO from a couple of months ago and that was the closest I have come. I would like to see Capital Brewery in Wisconcin make an Alt as in my limited experience they make some of the best authentic , well balanced German beers in the U.S.A. Patrick Hughes Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 3 Aug 2003 11:02:28 -0500 From: "John Sarette" <j2saret at peoplepc.com> Subject: Art v Science (12 rounds no decision) - ----Great Scott, man, they're BUBBLES, get over it.----- If you understand bubbles, you understand the expansion of the universe. this brings you close to the UNKNOWABLE quick am I an artist or a scientist? John (told by a Phil Prof "but this is easy for you, you're a math major" >not true< and by a painter "poets and physicists are alike, they are both concerned with the basic structure of things" "Labor is prior to, and independent of capital. Capital is only the fruit of labour and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital and deserves much the higher consideratiion." A. Lincoln (1st marxist er Republican president) Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 3 Aug 2003 12:11:27 -0400 From: "Buck Wilke" <brewer at valkyrie.net> Subject: peated malt hello brewers, peated malt seems to be getting hard to find locally. i do have a smoker and would like to do my own. does anyone have a "recipe" for smoking malt. exactly what is peated malt? is it smoked with peat moss? or wood? what kind of wood? how long is it smoked? and at what temp? i have tried to find these answers to no avail. anything that i have found is very sketchy at best. thanks, buck wilke Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 3 Aug 2003 20:42:52 -0500 From: "Steve Arnold" <vmi92 at cox-internet.com> Subject: CAP question Greetings fellow beerlings! Long time lurker, first time poster here. I recently made a CAP in accordance with Jeff Renner's article in Brewing Techniques. Can I just tell you, Jeff that it turned out WONDERFULLY! Thank you for all you have done for this style. It was probably the best beer I have brewed in my 3.5 years of brewing. Truly a slice of Americana Heaven. This was my first attempt at a true lager (as opposed to Kolsch), and I am hooked. I will be brewing many more lagers in the future. The beer had a slight grainy sweetness which I found to provide a delightful balance to the 25 IBUs. The problem has come only in the last week. After about 4 weeks in the bottle, that treasured "grainy sweetness" has disappeared. What is left is still a wonderful beer, but I am bugged that it has changed. My suspicion is that it is caused by the fact that I have been storing the bottles at room temperature instead of lager temps. What do you all think? Any one else have a similar problem with this or any other lager? Thanks, Steve Arnold Fort Smith, Arkansas Return to table of contents
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