HOMEBREW Digest #4502 Wed 17 March 2004

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  Re: The Yeast That Ate Ann Arbor ("Beer Man")
  Re: health beer recipes/techniques? ("Joe & Kirsten Woyte")
  re: hop tea ("Darth Marley")
  brew texts (darrell.leavitt)
  Health Beer (Alexandre Enkerli)
  Brewing Texts ("A.J deLange")
  Diacetyl ("steve lane")
  re: health beer recipes/techniques? (Matt Comstock)
  burner stand question (Marc Sedam)
  Wyeast Roselaere blend (Marc Sedam)
  Carbonate precipitation ("Brian Lundeen")
  hard cider recipe (Marc Sedam)
  Nutritional Beers ("Dave Burley")
  Berliner Weisse (Robert Sandefer)
  Re: Advanced Brewing Texts ("Doug Hurst")
  Pets with beer-related names (stihlerunits)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Tue, 16 Mar 2004 21:35:28 -0600 From: "Beer Man" <beer.man at cox.net> Subject: Re: The Yeast That Ate Ann Arbor In response to Don Scholl's question about other people's experience with White Labs yeast, I brewed a Tripel Saturday morning and pitched my yeast starter about 7:00 that night. At roughly 3 a.m., I happened to be up and heard a strange noise, so turned on the kitchen light and what did I see? My air lock was gushing foam and by the look was about to become a slow moving projectile. I removed the air lock and it was like a miniature old faithful in slow motion. The foam was constantly pouring out of the rubber bung on the top of my carboy. I capped it with an inverted plastic pitcher to prevent anything from falling in, but the gushing continued until about 5:00 or so Sunday Night. Man, I don't know what kinda steroids that yeast was on, but it was full on. I've never had yeast take off like that. I mean, I've had yeast show signs of ferment by a few hours later, but damn, never a full krausen by 6 hrs later. Much less the level of activity. White Labs needs to keep doing whatever they're doing if this is typical. Btw, I just tried my first lager with the equipment I've got at home (wine refrigerator) and I was curious about the sulfur taste (Yeast was white labs san francisco lager). Is that normal for a lager at the end of primary? How long does it take to tone down to normal levels? The beer is a California Common and I'm not sure how to approach the lagering phase, and if it's any different for this particular style. Any advice would be appreciated. Byron Towles Crescent City Homebrewers http://hbd.org/crescent Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 2004 22:14:05 -0600 From: "Joe & Kirsten Woyte" <woyte4 at cox-internet.com> Subject: Re: health beer recipes/techniques? (Jon O asks about creating healthy beers) Jon, I highly recommend 2 books to you: "Sacred and Herbal Healing Beers" (Brunner) to explore the idea of beers made with various healthful ingredients, and "Eating Well for Optimum Health" (Weil) to develop your understanding of heathy foods in general. Note that the second makes little mention of alcohol, and the first maintains an almost defiant disregard for the importance of yeast strains, focusing instead on ingredients, traditions, history, and many, many interesting recipes, most sized to experimental 1 gallon batches (perfect for a glass cider jug). There are simply too many great ideas to list here. As to your question about yeast strains, well, it's a judgement call, but in my own experimentation I've noted the following generalizations (your results may vary): - Ale yeast is user-friendly for those who ferment at room temp (spare bathtub is a great spot) - Lager yeast may be preferable if your focus is on the ingredients/herbs - An alternative to the opposing statements above is a California "steam" lager yeast - Wine yeast or cider yeast is a must for hard ciders that taste like anything other than yeast - Nothing beats a mead yeast for a mead Some other lessons I've learned first-hand: - When using strongly flavored herbs like yarrow, err on the cautious side - Steep, don't boil, fruit additions or juices - The main ingredient in both braggot and lambic and is patience - The only way to truly know the effect of an herb or adjunct is to make a control batch without it - Experiment with adjuncts in the fermentor, but prime with corn sugar or dme for safety's sake Finally, re: your question about unfermentables and indigestibles -- these are not synonyms. Just because s. cerevisiae can't digest it doesn't mean the various critters in your gut won't break it down for you. Prosit! -Joe Dry County Brewery Tyler, TX Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 2004 23:16:18 -0600 From: "Darth Marley" <darthmarley at comcast.net> Subject: re: hop tea One issue I have read about with doing a hop tea that argues against it is, that you are adding hop phenols to the beer without removing them in a hot or cold break. This could create chill haze problems. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Mar 2004 06:00:11 -0500 From: darrell.leavitt at plattsburgh.edu Subject: brew texts perhaps a bit less technical, but good none the less is the Fix's ANALYSIS OF BREWING TECHNIQUE... ..Darrell Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Mar 2004 08:20:50 -0400 From: Alexandre Enkerli <aenkerli at indiana.edu> Subject: Health Beer JonO in Minny said: > I'd be interested in recipes and techniques to create beer with higher > nutritional qualities. That can get really interesting, depending on how it's done. After all, health food stores are already an important source of ingredients for some of us: flaked grain, cool sugars, herbs... But we should probably define what we want in terms of beer nutrition and then look at ingredients and techniques to achieve it. There's the whole "saving the village by brewing beer" principle. Beer's safer than water (because of boiling, pH, and alcohol) and we all heard the legends of beer hagiography, with an Arnold (Arnould) or two in France and Belgium. But nowadays, soft-drinks are probably very safe in general... Among the common dietary/nutritional parameters in beer, there's at least carbohydrates, proteins, B-complex vitamins, and of course water. These are all pretty well-known and some are fairly easy to control. What about FAN? They're used by yeast but can't we use them too? Iron? Calcium? Fat??? For one thing, trub might be the part of beer with the most nutritional qualities, right? A very yeasty bottle-conditioned beer might already be "healthier" than other beers... There's also the whole other part, with herbs and such. Apparently, even hops have a calming effect and may help insomniacs. Most of the herbs used in gruit also have some effect that we may or may not want to get. Here's a good page describing different herbs to use in beer, with their use and effects: <http://www.calferm.org/edu/misc/botanicals.htm> Although, there's probably a danger of associating "health freak ingredients" with healthiness. The health benefits of a single ingredient matter very little in comparison to a whole diet... And there are technical difficulties. For instance, flax doesn't seem to be a very good ingredient for beer despite its alleged dietary qualities. Someone out there has made soy beer. That might be really interesting although head formation is probably out of the question. But this can all lead to interesting experiments. Are there nutritionists in the room? Ale-X in Moncton, New Brunswick (Canada) Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Mar 2004 13:55:57 +0000 From: "A.J deLange" <ajdel at cox.net> Subject: Brewing Texts For Chuck Brandt: Of the three texts listed the latter two (DeClerk and Hough et al) are, IMO absolutely essential. They sit on a shelf right over my computer so I don't even have to get out of my chair to get to them and get to them frequently I do. Right between them is "Handbook of Brewing" edited by Hardwick (publisher Marcel Dekker) and I refer to that fairly frequently as well. Most useful is Manfred Moll's chapter on water as the other two are a little thin on that subject. The MBAA text is definitely for the commercial brewer - thin on theory and thick on practice at a scale that home brewers don't deal with typically (three phase electrical power, for example). A similar text is "Technology Brewing and Malting" by Kunze but the emphasis is on European practices. Abriss der Bier Brauerei by Narziss is more theoretical but totally lacking in illustrations, graphs etc (and you have to be able to read technical German). A.J. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Mar 2004 08:02:46 -0600 From: "steve lane" <tbirdusa at hotmail.com> Subject: Diacetyl Interesting article in the Missouri papers yesterday. A jury in Joplin, MO awarded a man and his wife $20 million in damages for a product that has ruined the mans lungs. He now needs a double lung transplant after working in a microwave popcorn factory for a few years. He worked in the mixing room where they "concoct" the greasy tasty stuff that is injected into the packaging to give it the buttery flavor that we've all come to love on our popcorn. Seems that the guilty substance was diacetyl as one of the flavorings that was added to the popcorn concontion. The article mentioned that this is a naturally occuring chemical in many food products including cheese and beer. One more reason to sit back and enjoy your buttery brew and not just sit down and "inhale" your pint. My prayers go out the Ford family. I had the pleasure to be in the KC B-meisters with Steve Ford and he will be truly missed by all who's life he touch. Rest In Peace Steve. We'll raise a toast to you in your memory. Stephen Lane Kansas City, MO Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Mar 2004 06:47:43 -0800 (PST) From: Matt Comstock <mccomstock at yahoo.com> Subject: re: health beer recipes/techniques? Glancing at the hbd today after a long hiatus, I see JonO (aka Burn Unit, GO GOPHERS, I'm from Blaine, MN) asks about procedures to make 'higher complexity' beers. This reminded me of "Sangamon's Principle," described in Neal Stephenson's book "Zodiac," that essentially says simple molecules are better, because you never know what side effects more complicated compounds will have. Excerpt: "Sangamon's Principle," I said. "The simpler the molecule, the better the drug. So the best drug is oxygen. Only two atoms. The second-best, nitrous oxide - a mere three atoms. The third-best, ethanol - nine. Past that, you're talking lots of atoms." "So?" "Atoms are like people. Get lots of them together, never know what they'll do." But, we're making beer, not drugs. As far as grain additions go, others will have more information, I'm sure, but I think you'll need to make sure you've got plenty of barley malt enzymes around, which may lead you to use 6-row malt as opposed to 2-row - "6-row barley is richer in enzymes which are important when large amount of adjuncts are being used" (Kirk-Othmer Encyclopedia of Chemical Technology, Beer). During a mash, higher temperatures lead to more complex carbohydrates while lower temperatures lead to the more fermentable maltose. "alpha-amylase is resistant to comparatively high temperature; its temperature optimum in the mash is 70 deg-C (158 deg-F) and it is destroyed at 80 deg-C (176 deg-F). In the mash, it functions best at pH 5.8. Beta-amylase is destroyed at 75 deg-C (167 deg-F) and in the mash its optimum operating temperature is 60-65 deg-C (140 - 149 deg-F) and optimum pH is 5.4. Consequently, the higher the temperature of the mash, the more dextrin is formed. Long retention at 60-65 deg-C, on the other hand, gives a wort rich in maltose. In this way it is possible to regulate the fermentability of the wort since maltose is easily fermentable and dextrin is not." (Kirk-Othmer Encyclopedia of Chemical Technology, Beer). I've made ginger-honey beer. I threw several ounces of grated ginder root in at the beginning of the boil in hop bags. Near the end of the boil, right before chilling, I added a couple pounds of honey (malt:honey = 1:1). The stuff was not bad, and reminescent of the belgian triple I'd made (?). I still have a bag full of chili peppers in the freezer after I chickened out of making a chili beer. I don't know why, but I've always wanted to make a potato beer. If you are looking for some truly wacky recipes and an interesting read, (and Chuck this is for you too) try Sacred and Herbal Healing Beers: The Secrets of Ancient Fermentation by Stephen Harrod Buhner Matt in Cincinnati Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Mar 2004 10:22:54 -0500 From: Marc Sedam <marc_sedam at unc.edu> Subject: burner stand question Hey all, I'm taking about 10 days off starting Monday (changing jobs) and thought that it would be a good time to finally build a rig for my brew system. I'm looking for good designs out there which utilize the three-kettle (HLT, mash tun, boiler), two-tier approach. And I'm pretty well a moron when it comes to looking at something, then building it, so sites that have good foolproof instructions would be greatly appreciated. I have all of the bells and whistles of the semi-pro brewer (pump, CFC, QDs, converted keg setup) and just need an easy way to put it all together. Oh...one other thing...no welding. I don't know how and am too cheap to pay someone. Cheers! marc - -- Marc Sedam Chapel Hill, NC Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Mar 2004 10:29:10 -0500 From: Marc Sedam <marc_sedam at unc.edu> Subject: Wyeast Roselaere blend I am testing out some oud bruin recipes and used the Wyeast Roselaere blend to ferment the first one. The first thing I noticed was that fermentation took several days to start, even from a swelled XL pack. Guessing that the bacteria/yeast mix was settling in. Fermentation was slow and steady and looks about done now, with a gravity drop from 1.052 to 1.012. I do see some activity in the airlock and know that if there's a lactobacillus in the culture, that bugger will continue to feed. Been about three weeks from the brew date. I was a little surprised...OK...disappointed to taste the beer when I racked. Not really sour, not really characteristic of the oud bruins I've had on both sides of the pond. Has anyone brewed with this culture before? Does it get more sour? Is this something that should sit on the lees as it ages for two, four, six months? - -- Marc Sedam Associate Director Office of Technology Development The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 308 Bynum Hall; CB# 4105 Chapel Hill, NC 27599-4105 919.966.3929 (phone) 919.962.0646 (fax) OTD site : http://www.research.unc.edu/otd Monthly Seminar Info: http://www.research.unc.edu/otd/seminar/ Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Mar 2004 09:36:16 -0600 From: "Brian Lundeen" <BLundeen at rrc.mb.ca> Subject: Carbonate precipitation I just want to confirm something with the water experts here. Am I correct in assuming that the wort boil will also result in calcium carbonate precipitation, resulting in a reduction in both in the final beer, or does this reaction only occur when plain old water is boiled? Thanks Brian Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Mar 2004 10:48:40 -0500 From: Marc Sedam <marc_sedam at unc.edu> Subject: hard cider recipe So the digest seems slow and I'm still getting used to reading it the day after... Thought I'd repost a very easy hard cider recipe that I've started to make every six months or so. I like to have it to counterbalance the beers, and it's very refreshing during the warm months to come. I make this in three gallon batches basically because I have a three gallon keg I like to use for either very strong beers or cider. Just tweaked the recipe a bit from something I posted in January. HARD CIDER/CYSER (3 gallons) 3 gallons unpasteurized apple cider (I use Whole Foods Gravestein) 2lbs honey Safale S-04 dry yeast Ferment two gallons of cider completely. Dissolve honey in a quart of water and add to fermenter. When fermentation is complete, rack into secondary fermenter with the remaining gallon of unfermented cider. Add two Campden tablets to the secondary to stop any further fermentation. Rack into keg and serve. Low alcohol and fresh apple taste. Yummy. - -- Marc Sedam Chapel Hill, NC Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Mar 2004 10:46:53 -0500 From: "Dave Burley" <Dave_Burley at charter.net> Subject: Nutritional Beers Brewsters: JonO is thinking about brewing beers from different non-traditional constituents used before RHG and asks for some ideas, while fearing some sort of flaming. No flames here. The HBD is all about experimentation. I mean if you can put chili in beer, you can put in anything - Right SteveA? Why not just substitute various non-traditional components as adjuncts. I'd start with the legume field. Cook up some white beans to soft but not squishy, briefly mash them up (physically) in a food processor and incorporate them in the mash. The high protein may cause cloudiness so I suspect a protein step is in order as an improvement. Later some black turtle beans are in order for your stouts. And of course don't forget the chili when you substitute pinto beans. In this case, I'd try a little cilantro in the hop back also. For more advanced work legumes easily sprout and should be easy to malt. As far as those non-fermentable carbs go, your body can use most of them, so they should be counted, but the ones fermented by bacteria in the lower tract do cause some problems as you know. I also suspect these bean beers will have a higher non-fermentable carb content with the anticipated consequences. Keep on Brewin' Dave Burley Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Mar 2004 12:49:18 -0500 From: Robert Sandefer <melamor at vzavenue.net> Subject: Berliner Weisse In Digest 4423, I mentioned that I had made two batches of Berliner Weisse and promised to report on their progress. (long post follows) Well, I have tasted them twice and so this seems like a good time to do so. But first I'll post the details of each batch: The batches each used 3 pounds of wheat malt, 3 pounds of pale malt, .5 oz of whole Saaz hops (6.9% alpha acids), a Wyeast tube of Lactobacillus delbruckii, a 1 quart starter of White Labs German ale/Kolsch yeast, and 1 cup corn sugar boiled 5 min in 2 cups water (for priming). The first batch boiled the hops in the sparge water for an hour. After the 90-minute mash (at 153F), I mashed out with 9 quarts of the 192F hops tea (with most of the hops pieces) and let the mash sit for 10 min. I used the remaining hops tea (hops and all) to sparge the mash. I collected around 5.5 gallons of wort and brought it to a boil. I then covered and cooled it. I poured it into the fermenter. The Lactobacillus tube was added. After five days I pitched the yeast culture. After another five days, I racked to a secondary (5gal carboy). The secondary was 117 days long. I then bottled the beer with the priming sugar. The second batch used more conventional techniques: I mashed the grains for 90 min (at 153F), mashed out with 10 quarts 177F water, sparged with 165F water, and collected 6.5 gallons of wort. The wort and hops were boiled for 60 min. The wort was cooled, poured into the primary and inoculated with Lactobacillus. After 5 days, the yeast culture was pitched. After five days more, the beer was racked to secondary, where it stayed for 121 days. I then bottled it with the priming sugar. At the first tasting, Batch 1 had been in the bottle for 2.0 months; Batch 2, for 1.5 months. My tasting notes read: Batch 1: gold-yellow in color, perfect clarity, dense white head that settled to lace quickly. Aroma is sour, fruit, funky. decently large/good mouthfeel. Carbonation is high, apparent. Taste is funky, /sour/, sour milk, hint of fruitiness, hint of spice. May also be a tad bready. Finish is sour, dry, long. Bitterness is not obvious; there might be some in the finish but I'm not sure. Batch 2: yellow-gold (I think darker than Batch 1), perfectly clear, white head that settled quickly. Aroma is sour, barely fruity/floral. Mouthfeel is ok, fairly thin (but thicker than Batch 1). Carbonation is high, apparent. Taste is sour, sour milk, caramel, hint of spice, fruity, wheat/tart. Finish is sour, dry, long, and has detectable bitterness. At the first tasting, I noted also that Batch 1 seemed more sour/lactic and fruity while Batch 2 had more biterness, spiciness, and caramel. Both were very sour but I prefered Batch 1 at that tasting. Nine days later I did a second tasting of both beers. This time though I had my wife remove the crown caps so that I could not tell which beer I was getting. I poured and tasted and after I made my notes, I asked which had been which. My notes are: Batch 1: short-lived white head, gold, perfect clarity. Aroma is sour, lactic, floral, fruity. Taste is bready, lactic, sour, funky, wheaty, hint of caramel. Finish is dry. Carbonation is good, obvious. Batch 2: short-lived white head, yellow-gold, perfect clarity. Aroma is fruity, funky, lightly sour/lactic. Taste is fruity, sour, lactic, a hint nutty, and a little bread. Finish is dry, sour, fruity. Carbonation is good, obvious. I also noted: Batch 1 is more sour and obviously sharp. Batch 2 was my favorite because the tastes seemed cleaner, more melded, less obviously sour. Mouthfeel of 1 just slightly thicker/fuller than that of 2. Take whatever conclusions you want from my notes, but I'd say that there are not night-and-day differences between these beers so anyone who wants to use "ordinary" techniques of mashing, sparging, and boiling to produce Berliner weisse can do so (if they are willing to deal with Lactobacillus). I find both beers interesting and quite drinkable. I will continue to taste these batches as they age and report back on any changes. Robert Sandefer Arlington, VA Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Mar 2004 12:27:51 -0600 From: "Doug Hurst" <dougbeer2000 at hotmail.com> Subject: Re: Advanced Brewing Texts Chuck Brandt is wondering which advanced homebrew/probrew books to buy. Seeing as I find myself amassing a brewing library, I thought I might chime in. Of the ones Chuck listed, I've got de Clerck's "A Textbook of Brewing". This book is a good primer covering all topics from barley in the field to filling the bottle. It was written in the 1950s and I've found the basic info to be quite good but the technology and language a little out of date. It's worth having for history sake, as de Clerck was an authority on brewing in his time and his influence is still felt (or tasted) today, especially in belgian brewing. I also have "Technology Malting and Brewing" by Wolfgang Kunze, which I highly recommend. The info is much more recent than de Clerck, it's easier reading and there are plenty of excellent illustrations and photos. This is would be a good book for homebrewers who want an in-depth understanding of brewing. It does cover some topics like mass bottling and filtering, which are (currently) not used in homebrewing. Both Kunze and de Clerck are recommended texts by Siebel for their diploma course. I found the Kunze book especially helpful. If you're interested in the microbiological side you might look at "Brewing Microbiology" by Priest and Campbell. It covers everything from yeast metabolism to most of the contaminating microorganisms. Most useful are the sections on rapid detection methods and analysis. I've heard that "Malting and Brewing Science" vols I & II by Briggs, Hough et.al. are quite good, but have yet to see them. They also appear to be the most pricey of the pro-brew books at about $170 each. I don't know much about the books offered by the MBAA, but I'm sure they're fine books. "The Practical Brewer" appears to have the same content of the books listed above, however Stephen Holle's "A Handbook of Basic Brewing Calculations" seems likely to be useful to homebrewers. Doug Hurst Chicago, IL [197.5, 264.8] Apparent Rennerian Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 17 Mar 2004 13:50:27 -0900 From: stihlerunits at mosquitonet.com Subject: Pets with beer-related names I just heard from some friends of mine that they have a new puppy that is mostly black, with a some of tan and bit stoutish some they named her Guinness. I also know somebody with an iguana named Spat as in Spaten. This past Fall my wife and I adopted a stray cat which we named Fuggles. I'm curious as to how many people out there have pets (or children, for that matter) with beer-related names. I realize that this is a bit off topic with respect to homebrew but it could be fun. Cheers, Scott Stihler Fairbanks, Alaska Return to table of contents
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