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Messages - Richard

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All Grain Brewing / Re: Water treatment
« on: November 16, 2017, 04:45:22 PM »
One of the reasons I moved from partial mashing and sparging in a cooler with a large kettle top-up was that I couldn't figure out how to do the water treatments (there were other reasons, too). Now I do full-volume BIAB so no worries anymore because there is no sparging. I Use Bru'nWater to calculate for the mash and that's it.

Commercial Beer Reviews / Gordon Biersch Chum dry-hopped Irish Red Ale
« on: November 12, 2017, 08:25:18 PM »
Gordon Biersch, in San Jose CA, has made a beer to honor the San Jose Sharks hockey team. It is called Chum, and it is an Irish Red Ale. I love the wordplay, but I really don't like the beer. It has a taste that I really don't care for. Can anyone tell me what that flavor is and/or where it comes from so I can avoid it in the beers I brew?

From the website at :

This dry-hopped blood red ale features a rich malt bill, complemented by a spicy hop aroma from imported Hallertau and Tettnang hops. A smooth yet powerful beer just like the San Jose Sharks lineup. This ale will leave you circling for more.

I have used Hallertau hops before and they are not the issue. It is either something in the malt bill or the Tettnang hops. I think it is in the malt, but I'm not sure.


General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Black IPA, Citra and Mosaic?
« on: November 09, 2017, 10:42:19 PM »
If the dark moss hides the tropical taste, then perhaps tropical is not the way to go. I am planning a black IPA next week and have chosen hops to stay away from tropical or citrus flavors, and am going for earthy, piney and dank flavors instead because I think they will work better with the dark roasted flavors. I love Citra but am going with Columbus, Simcoe and Chinook on this one.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Any reason to cold crash a stout?
« on: October 31, 2017, 10:31:53 AM »
OK, I'll cold crash the stout. It turns out that the brown ale is now carbonating properly; it just took longer than usual. The weather has gotten a bit chilly in the last month and the room the beer is in has been cooler than the summer, so that slowed down the yeast. beer to dispose of except in the usual way.

General Homebrew Discussion / Any reason to cold crash a stout?
« on: October 28, 2017, 08:07:08 AM »
Does cold crashing do anything other than help to deliver clear beer? I have a stout that is so dark that clarity doesn't matter, so I am thinking that there is no point to cold crashing. I bottled a dark brown beer a couple of weeks ago that used WY1335 yeast that I cold crashed for a few days, and it hasn't carbonated properly in the bottles. I am wondering if I took too much yeast out of suspension with the cold crash. I used the same procedure I have many times before and this is the first time I have had a problem.

All Grain Brewing / Re: How to get pH of modified from Bru'nWater
« on: October 19, 2017, 08:32:20 AM »
Upon further review, BeerSmith does not appear to use the water pH for anything. I can change the value from 6 to 9 and the estimated mash pH does not change. It seems strange to me to ask for an input that isn't used.

All Grain Brewing / Re: How to get pH of modified from Bru'nWater
« on: October 18, 2017, 06:28:41 PM »
I understand that BeerSmith doesn't take into account the water additions you put on the water sheet. What I want to do is generate a water profile that represents the modified water after I put in the additions recommended by Bru'nWater. I can't do that because BeerSmith needs a pH for a water profile, and Bru'nWater doesn't give me that.

Perhaps I should just give up and ignore the whole water section of BeerSmith and just keep a copy of the Bru'nWater output next to my BeerSmith file for every brew, which is what I am doing now.

All Grain Brewing / Re: How to get pH of modified from Bru'nWater
« on: October 18, 2017, 04:57:51 PM »
I understand that it doesn't really matter to the brewing process. I am just trying to get all the information into BeerSmith in a consistent way. It is a matter of record-keeping, not brewing. I would like BeerSmith's expected mash pH to match that from Bru'nWater so that I only need to keep one dataset for a brew.

All Grain Brewing / How to get pH of modified from Bru'nWater
« on: October 18, 2017, 04:00:29 PM »
I use Bru'nWater to choose my water modifications, but I like to take the finished profile and put it into BeerSmith so I have all the brewing information in one place. BeerSmith wants a pH for the water, but Bru'nWater doesn't give me that, it only gives me a mash pH. It seems like it shouldn't be hard to get the pH of the modified water from all the Bru'nWater inputs, and I was surprised that it isn't there. Am I missing something?

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Water hardness question...
« on: October 08, 2017, 05:33:37 PM »
One one of the podcasts, I think Beersmith, Bamforth said they found caramels to be foam negative.

I just dug out that BeerSmith podcast from 2011, where Bamforth is called the "Pope of Foam", and he says the exact opposite.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Water hardness question...
« on: October 04, 2017, 12:19:56 PM »
In my experience, the best ingredient to add for increasing foam is DME. For my stronger beers I use some DME to keep my grain bill small enough that I can lift the bag easily, and I notice that those beers have much thicker and more persistent foam than those without DME. That tells me that it is about the mashing process, so I am about to stop using carapils and just add 8 oz DME to every brew instead (with appropriate OG adjustments).

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Water hardness question...
« on: October 04, 2017, 09:47:40 AM »
Thanks Martin.  So here's a pic (excuse the plastic cup) of a beer that just finished carbing yesterday.  I ran the yeast off the bottom of the keg and then tapped this beer.  Check out the head on it.  Before futzing with water composition and pH control I would not get a thick, foamy and long-lasting head like that... it's relatively new to me.  I'm wondering what is responsible for it.  Before the head on my beers would have a little larger bubbles, the foam would not be so thick and would not cling to the sides of the glass as much and the head would dissipate quicker.


Reading the "Foam" article referenced above, it says
  'Also never use carapils/carafoam as it is actually very foam negative.'

I would like more information on this because it runs counter to everything else I have heard.

Not enough information to calculate, but it will go a lot faster if you put a fan on it. If you can put it in a bucket of warm water (and keep the water warm) it will go even faster.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Brun Water Question for Pale Ale profile
« on: September 22, 2017, 10:53:35 AM »
I'm in the same situation as leejoreilly. BrunMater nails my pH every time, but I measure during the mash anyway just to be sure. Water can change from time to time, acid malts vary from batch to batch, etc. I first bought a cheap meter, then got exasperated with its inconsistencies and bought an expensive one. Now it seems that the cheaper one would do as a sanity check.

Equipment and Software / Re: inexpensive chiller for fermentation
« on: September 02, 2017, 07:51:51 AM »
Although the unit you were asking about is not a temperature regulator, you can make a regulated system using it. Get an insulated ice chest large enough to use as a water bath for your fermenter, as suggested. Make an insulated top to go around  your carboy or bucket, and leave a small hole in one corner. Use the water cooler to cool the bath around the fermenter. Use a cheap (e.g. Inkbird) controller to turn the cooler on and off to maintain the temperature you want in the bath. The cooler may not be happy pumping the bath water directly (I think it is designed for closed-cycle use with its own water reservoir) but you could use a heat exchanger if necessary.

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