HOMEBREW Digest #4937 Wed 25 January 2006

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  Re: yeast attenuation/flocculation/storage ("steve.alexander")
  Re: Cyser (Eric Wescott)
  Re: Subject: Homebrew shops in Houston (chrisn)
  Re: Cold conditioning (Jeff Renner)
  CO2 and hand pump (Jeff Renner)
  Re: Cyser (Danny WIlliams)
  Boiling ("Peed, John")
  Grand Cru? ("Spencer W. Thomas")
  Green Schmutz (Rick Weber)
  I need one with a tap! (Glyn Crossno)
  Re: Re: yeast attenuation/flocculation/storage ("steve.alexander")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Wed, 25 Jan 2006 09:11:02 -0500 From: "steve.alexander" <-s at adelphia.net> Subject: Re: yeast attenuation/flocculation/storage Randy Ricchi is having difficulty posting, and asked me to post this for him. With minor (linewrap) changes Randy writes: > In regard to storing yeast long term under beer in Monday's HBD, I >think it was Fred Johnson who asked: > > >Is there anything likely to be wrong with the yeast > stored and > >revived in this manner? Petite mutants? Selection of > >subpopulation? > > > > And Steve Alexander responded: > > >> Probably not petites assuming you do a build-up but we are selecting >>a subpopulation that can survive the selection & cold storage. That >>*might* correlate with things like more storage carbos or better >>membrane integrity. One might speculate that this might advantage >>early flocculation lower attenuation, but it's only speculation.< > > Very interesting speculation there, Steve, and timely for me since I >recently found in my brew-fridge a 5 year old slant of a favorite >lager yeast (Brewtek CL680, East European Lager)that I thought I'd >never see again. It cultured up rather quickly, maybe a day or two at >the latest to see activity in the 50 ml starter. > > I built it up a couple of times using a dry malt extract that I know >is not very attenuative. The resultant supernatant tasted very good, >and I wanted to get an idea of the attenuation of this yeast so I >built it up once again using some wort that I had canned from a >previous batch of all-grain beer. I used some of the same wort to >build up some 6 month old white labs pilsner yeast (WLP800), which is >supposed to have an apparent attenuation of 72-77%. The two starters >were kept side by side at around 70F. > > The White Labs yeast fermented the (1.050 OG) starter solution down >to 1.015. The Brewtek yeast only took it down to 1.020. I believe >this is 70% apparent attenuation for the White Labs and 60% for the >Brewtek. > > I know the Brewtek was more attenuative than 60% when it was >fresh. Although (unfortunately) I got out of the habit of recording >final gravities, I never would have re-used a yeast that gave me such >poor attenuation. I have since pitched the dregs of the latest >Brewtek culture into a gallon of 1.055 wort that I pulled off from an >Octoberfest that I made this weekend. I'll report back on how that >fermention went. I mashed at 150 for 71 minutes, so it should be >fairly fermentable. > > Judging from my experiences so far, it seems that I may have >selected a lower attenuating population of yeast, perhaps supporting >Steve's speculation? > > If nothing else, this is an interesting exercise for me. - --end Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 25 Jan 2006 09:22:08 -0500 From: Eric Wescott <eric.wescott at gmail.com> Subject: Re: Cyser Reply to Kevin Mueller's Cyser questions: Malo-lactic fermentation is caused by malo-lactic bacteria. These are a naturally occuring bacteria (it's possible for them to float into your brewshop), which convert malic acid into lactic acid. Malic acid is said to be harsh, lactic acid smooth, so MLF tends to be used to smooth out harsh wines and round out the mouthfeel. MLF has no effect on sugar levels. It does not sound like MLF occured in your cyser. That would take longer (1-3 months), and tends to have a bit of a white film on top. I would guess the darker color is due to adding honey to cider. Ciders vary in color and taste, as do honeys. Combine them, and you can get a darker beverage. If if tastes good, I would not worry. How dark was the original cider and honey - that would relate to how dark your end cyser will be. Eric Wescott Stratford, CT Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 25 Jan 2006 08:41:59 -0600 From: chrisn at wt.net Subject: Re: Subject: Homebrew shops in Houston > > Date: Tue, 24 Jan 2006 00:36:34 -0500 > From: "Kyle Jones" <kjones1 at ufl.edu> > Subject: Homebrew shops in Houston > > I am moving to Houston in March to take a job at MDACC, and I am > in the process of identifying important things about Houston, the most > important being the location of a good homebrew supply shop in the area. > I am buying a house in The Woodlands, so somewhere on the north side of > of the city would be ideal. Advice regarding places to drink/buy some > good beer would be appreciated as well. I would also like to venture > out > and join a homebrewing club, if anyone knows of any in the area. Thanks > in advance for any and all information. > > Kyle > Welcome to Texas! If you going to be living in The Woodlands, then you'll want to visit a shop called "Brew It Yourself", on I-45 northbound side, just north of the Rayford/Sawdust exit (maybe a mile?). Ray is the owner and a real good guy. They have a club with monthly meetings (2nd Saturday, I think), but it's been a few months since T've been to one. As far as buying decent beer, the local HEB (Supermarket) will have a decent selection, as does Spec's (chain liquor store). Chris North Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 25 Jan 2006 09:50:20 -0500 From: Jeff Renner <jsrenner at umich.edu> Subject: Re: Cold conditioning I'm catching up after a week in Florida away from Michigan cold and damp (very little snow this year) "Cave, Jim" <Cave at psc.org> wrote on Jan. 19: > For Pilsners, I try and use about 6 weeks at 0 C... > > If you are bottle conditioning after this process, you will need to > add > a small amount of yeast starter (125 ml for 45 litres is lots). This has not been my experience. When I have bottled lagers after even ten weeks of lagering at freezing, they carbonate at cellar temperatures fine. I suppose it may take a bit longer than with fresh yeast, but they are fine. I do deliberately siphon up a few "slugs" of yeast from the bottom when racking to the priming/bottling tank. A trick that I devised a few years ago (and published in Zymurgy) to monitor carbonation is to bottle one bottle in a screw top 16 oz. or half liter plastic soda bottle. Leave a normal amount of head space, then squeeze out the excess air, leaving the bottle partially collapsed. Then, as it carbonates, it will pop the bottle into normal shape, then it will become increasingly hard. It will never get as hard as a bottle of soda - they are really highly carbonated, but it's easy to monitor. Since these bottles are not very O2 impermeable, that bottle should be drunk first. Jeff - --- Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan USA, jsrennerATumichDOTedu "One never knows, do one?" Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943 ***Please note new address*** Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 25 Jan 2006 10:37:16 -0500 From: Jeff Renner <jsrenner at umich.edu> Subject: CO2 and hand pump Glyn Crossno <graininfuser at yahoo.com> writes from Southern Middle TN > I know I have not posted in forever, but thanks to all that have. > Thanks to Pat for keeping HBD alive. Lets all try to keep the queue > full in 2006. Questions: Spices for a Grand Cru? Grains? Yeast? > Can I use a hand pump tap, and just redirect the air line to my CO2 > bottle when at home? Good to hear from you, Glyn! I can't answer your Grand Cru questions, but I'm sure others will. (Well, I guess I could look it up in one of my many books.) But i used to use what we call a picnic pump with the pump bypassed and hooked up to CO2. Eventually, I just converted it because I never used the air pump. But I'm sure you realize that with the hand air pump, you'll be introducing air into your keg, which means the beer will go off in a few days. Even purging the keg when you get home is pretty iffy. I'd suggest investing in a small CO2 tank. Or, you can fill another keg with, say 35 psi of CO2 and occasionally repressurize your dispensing keg. Jeff - --- Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan USA, jsrenner at umich.edu "One never knows, do one?" Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943 ***Please note new address*** Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 25 Jan 2006 10:48:29 -0500 From: Danny WIlliams <dbwill at gmail.com> Subject: Re: Cyser > Anyone want to explain an ML fermentation to me? Any other ideas of why it > would have darkened? The particles in suspension when the cyser was cloudier reflected more light right near the glass thus making the liquid look lighter. As the cyser clears and those particles fall from suspension, light can go deeper into the carboy and be absorbed there (or pass all the way through) thus making the whole bottle look darker. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 25 Jan 2006 08:20:21 -0800 From: "Peed, John" <jpeed at elotouch.com> Subject: Boiling I'd like to advise against covering the boil kettle during the boil, partially or otherwise. I'd also encourage people to boil off a generous amount of liquid, on the order of 1.25 to 1.5 gallons per hour. My rule of thumb is to boil as hard as possible without depositing hops on the sides of the kettle (although they can be rinsed back into the wort by splashing with a paddle, they'll spend more time on the sides than in that wort, and they can't do their job if they're not in the wort). You need to boil uncovered so DMS can escape - that's really important. You need to boil vigorously to drive off DMS and to extract the hop bitterness and coagulate proteins, all of which require vigorous mechanical action, not just heat. For those who are boiling at a lesser rate now, all you have to do is add the difference in top-up water before you start the boil, then boil vigorously enough to boil off the original boil amount plus the added top-up water. For users of Pro Mash and similar programs, there's a user-settable boil-off variable. I'd advise using gallons per hour rather than percent per hour if you make different size batches, because boil off tends to be a constant amount in a given kettle (using percent changes the actual amount as the batch size changes). I used to cover the kettle during the boil, to "save as much of that precious wort as possible", and to save on propane. All I did was make lousy, DMS-laden beer, and switching to an uncovered boil improved the results dramatically. John Peed Oak Ridge, TN Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 25 Jan 2006 12:54:11 -0500 From: "Spencer W. Thomas" <hbd at spencerwthomas.com> Subject: Grand Cru? Glyn Crossno <graininfuser at yahoo.com> writes from Southern Middle TN > > Questions: Spices for a Grand Cru? Grains? Yeast? "Grand Cru" is not a style. It means "our best beer" or "the beer we're really proud of" or something like that. Usually it's a biggish beer, but other than that... Consider, for example, Rodenbach Grand Cru. It's just the unblended Rodenbach from the aging vat. Celis Grand Cru, on the other hand is a tripel-like beer with some (secret) spices and a nice yeast. (From the label: "Celis Grand Cru is brewed according to a traditional Belgian recipe using pale barley malts, Saaz and Cascade hops, Curacao orange peel and select spices.") =S Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 25 Jan 2006 11:54:55 -0600 From: Rick Weber <rick.weber05 at gmail.com> Subject: Green Schmutz I recently started an Irish Stout (using the Murphy's recipe from Clone Brews) and I'm getting some green schmutz at the top with the foam. Is this normal, or does it mean there's something wrong? This is only my third brew. Thanks for the help, Rick Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 25 Jan 2006 10:24:16 -0800 (PST) From: Glyn Crossno <graininfuser at yahoo.com> Subject: I need one with a tap! I found this sort of amusing. Maybe the government will buy me one someday, with a tap! HTTP://www.crusincooler.com/ Glyn in southern middle TN Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 25 Jan 2006 19:46:47 -0500 From: "steve.alexander" <-s at adelphia.net> Subject: Re: Re: yeast attenuation/flocculation/storage Randy Ricchi wrote: On fridged cultures stored under beer ... > -S>One might speculate that > > this might advantage early flocculation lower attenuation, > but it's only speculation. > > Very interesting speculation there, Steve, and timely for me since I > recently found in my brew-fridge a 5 year old slant of a favorite lager > yeast (Brewtek CL680, East European Lager)that I thought I'd never see > again. It cultured up rather quickly, maybe a day or two at the latest to > see activity in the 50 ml starter. > Fwiw I've also pulled lager strains back from the grave at about 5 years. Not recommended but it can work. >I built it up a couple of times using a dry malt extract that I know is >not very attenuative. [...] this is 70% apparent attenuation for the White >Labs and 60% for the Brewtek. That's a more radical difference than I would expect. To put this in perspective there was an EBC congress paper in the 1980s where the authors selected non/late-flocculating cells over about 10 batch fermentations and the final batch then was more turbid and a bit better attenuated than the original. Then the authors selected more flocculent populations for another ~10 batch ferments and were able to restore the turbidity/attenuation characteristic. 10 batch ferments is perhaps 30-40 yeast generations. I have some doubts that a plate/fridge storage can prune the genes more effectively then 30-40 generations of hard selection, but who knows. Kirsop (was head of a UK national yeast bank) wrote in one of his books of suspicions that each of the LT storage techniques might have a selection impact. Freeze drying has gotten a lot of bad press for low viability, and chromosomal breaks resulting (sometimes) in lack of flocculation & petite mutants. The very low (60%) attenuation could be due to petite mutants, but that's far from certain. It seems that (freeze) drying to <15% is the features that causes the stress and then formation of petite mutants but long-term storage has been blamed as a cause of petites. My FIRST suspicion on seeing Randy's note is that he has effectively underpitched and caused the underattenuation, but that depends on his methods (which I don't know). When raising any very weak culture from slants/bottles there is likely to be more trub & dead cells than live cells early-on and I wouldn't suggest separating these till you have 6+ ounces working pretty well. Once you get to that stage though, my practice is to remove the sediment while you have active fermentation, then move on to a stir plate where oxygen is made available. After removing the sediment it's sometimes surprising how little yeast is actually present. That's the first point where you can really eyeball the viable yeast volume. I don't know Randy's method of handling here, but I would suspect that he pitched too little culture yeast into too much wort in a closed environment and it failed to attenuate for lack of O2. Wild yeast may underattenuate but it's very unlikely they'd taste like lager yeast. I should probably point out that, tho' it's a minor PITA, plating out a culture to select a pure strain is probably a good idea after one of these extreme culture resurrection procedures. It's probably the best method to knock down the petite mutant population. - -- Petite Mutants ... respiratory deficient brewing yeasts .... Petite mutants represents a chromosomal change in the yeast cell mitochondria. For those who haven't kept up with the past century of biology - the mitochondria and it's mtDNA is entirely separate from nucleic DNA [[and was not even included in the yeast DNA sequencing a few years ago]]. Anyway ale yeast and lager yeast have very different mitochondria and you shouldn't try to draw too many broad conclusions here. The mitochondrial genes are "spontaneously" defective (petite mutant, PM) in roughly 1% of all yeast cells normally. Beer will reportedly taste normal when up to 3-4% of cells are PM. Beyond that there may be dominant diacetyl or other off flavors in addition to sluggish fermentation, underattenuation and changes in flocculation. PM cells cannot respire (go aerobic), they are purely fermentative but that's not much of a disadvantage in the brewery where respiration is rarely observed and difficult to arrange. One of the PM detection methods is a colorimetric test where yeast are placed on an aerobic media (sorbitol I think - a carbohydrate that cannot be fermented, but can be respired) then some respiration byproduct causes a color change. A number of stresses will increase the PM rate including very high ethanol (15-20%) and a significant number of modestly mutagenic chemicals (formaldehyde, ethidium bromide, ...). PMs are disadvantaged in several ways - the y have lower cell membrane components (sterols, UFAs and phosphatidylcholine) which might be the cause of higher stress and lower growth of PM cells at moderate ethanol levels. You might think you could select off the non-PM cells in suspension while still growing later than the crummy low lipid PM cells, but unfortunately most of the time (~80% of PM cultures in one study) PM populations have crummy flocculence and stay in suspension after growth ceases. Sometimes not. *If* your PM cells are poor flocculators you might reduce the PM population by selecting good flocculators, but it may require several batches to reduce the PMs to tolerable levels and .... at some point plating out a new culture (or buying a new culture) makes more sense that selection efforts. They are called 'petite' because they produce notably smaller culture plate colonies, but the cells are often much smaller too. Petite mutants, respiratory deficient cells, can be selected against by several means, and high ethanol tolerant strains (both ale and lager) are far less susceptible to PM. fwiw, -S Return to table of contents
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