HOMEBREW Digest #44 Mon 09 January 1989

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		Rob Gardner, Digest Coordinator

  An odd bit about bottles... (This PIZZA symbolizes my COMPLETE EMOTIONAL RECOVERY!!)
  Some Belated Results  (Mike Meyer)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Sun, 8 Jan 89 23:24:57 PST From: nosun!sharpwa!GODZLA.decnet!CROASDILL at Sun.COM (This PIZZA symbolizes my COMPLETE EMOTIONAL RECOVERY!!) Subject: An odd bit about bottles... Hi there! Just a quick note about Champagne bottles. There appears to be two standards in mouth/lip sizes. One is what is commonly called American and the other is European. I have found that while the sizes vary slightly, you can cap any bottle from an American winery (Andre's, Cook's, Ballatore, Martinelli's). However, the European is larger (Cordon Negro, etc ) and will ruin your capper. We routinely fill one case of beer bottles and one case of Champagne bottles per five gallon batch. We have never had a Champagne bottle burst (although we lost some 11 oz beer bottles last summer). There are fewer to clean, they fill faster and there is less oxidation going on. Any questions?? Any doubts left?? I'm tired of bottles now anyway, I wanna start keggin'! Greg Croasdill UUCP: ...(tektronix | sun | percival)!nosun!sharpwa!gcc Snail: Sharp Microelectronics fone : (206) 253-3738 Vancouver,WA (the other Vancouver) "Don't believe everything you read" Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 9 Jan 89 18:29:37 PST From: meyer at tcville.hac.com (Mike Meyer) Subject: Some Belated Results Sorry I haven't gotten back to the list as I promised; our holiday brewing activities left me and my roommate with an awful lot of bottling to do at the last minute (last batch was bottled literally before driving my roomate to the airport). Add my holiday travels, and I've already given you too many excuses. The Blueberry Lager we tried (taken from Zymurgy, the 'Jake and Elwood's Blueberry Lager' recipe) turned out fairly well: The beer is quite light in body, very dry -- no fruit sweetness whatsoever, and as was promised by the recipe, a nice purple color. The Laaglander extract it is based on seemed rather strongly hopped at brewing time, but there seems to be a good balance between the tartness of the blueberries and the hops. The recipe also used a pound of honey, and the honey flavor is noticeable. The honey needs far more time to mellow out than this batch ended up getting before it was gone -- the sheer novelty of it made it a popular item among our friends and relatives. I do have a couple of bottles set aside for later, however -- we'll see how it is in another month or two. My batch of 'Slow Lori's Ginger Lager', another Zymurgy recipe, turned out somewhat worse than I had hoped. It has a nasty 'bite' to it that some tell me is due to the honey, and will age out; this batch has a really nasty bacterial infection, though, and I suspect that I should have peeled the ginger, which doesn't seem to dominate the flavor much so far. I'm definitely going to give this a great deal more aging. My other experiment, 'Black Lite' turned out to be a success of sorts. As promised, the beer has a very light body, and somewhat of a licorice note to it. Best at room temperature, it turns out: it has very little flavor when chilled. I really like the Bierkeller Dark extract, but think I performed a minor act of sacrilege in using it this way -- this extract would be great as the basis for a Dopplebock or Bock. Still, I like the brew I got -- very nice head and head retention, a tasty beer when warm, more of a soft drink when cold. Definitely in the 'Lawnmower Beer' class. On the question of adding sugar to extract kits: I guess it depends on the style you want to brew. I followed the directions on the Telford's Pilsener Kit, although I may have fudged some and substituted a bit of malt for sugar. I got good results. Once while making a batch of Anarchy Ale (Telford's Amber, ale yeast, Fuggles Hops, Light Dried Extract), I fell short of dried extract and was forced to substitute with corn sugar. I ended up substituting about 1 2/3 cups of corn sugar. Curiously, this substitution made no discernable difference in the color or body of the final product, and beleive you me, I compared batches afterwards. On the other end of the spectrum, my first batch used 2 lbs. of corn sugar, and it took an extremely long time to age out that cidery taste, though I recently tasted a 13-month-old bottle from the batch, and it tasted just like Dos Equis :-). I can see putting a max of 2 cups of corn sugar into the wort these days, under any circumstances. (tho' come to think of it, my most cidery batches were made when I was simply pouring the hot wort onto the corn sugar rather than boiling it in the wort...any correlation, folks?) Enough out of me -- think I'll go home now and relax, etc. Mike Meyer Return to table of contents
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