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Messages - wingnut

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1
Homebrew Competitions / Re: 2016 NHC
« on: May 03, 2016, 04:31:11 AM »
The checklist scoresheet doesn't allow for a lot of comments, local competitions are better for lots of feedback

Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk




Indeed.  The checklist is not very verbose, however, I like the checklist.  Most good judges will write in something if the checklist does not adequately list what they are tasting... but I think the check boxes give just as much of an indication of what the taster was experiencing as the hand written paragraph.  I also like that it creates a more consistent feedback method... making sure all the same aspects of the beer are analyzed every time.

I think the only thing that is missing in some cases, (in the check sheet) is a good means of communicating how a beer misses the style.  (I am thinking specifically about sour beers styles and other non-mainstream styles.   I had a couple sour beers that were good (very drinkable was the comment)... but missed the mark on style a bit, and (fortunately) the judges were kind enough to put three or four words in to state how it missed.  That is perfect for figuring out how to brew the next one!

2
Homebrew Competitions / Re: Remaining NHC sites
« on: April 14, 2016, 04:18:14 AM »

[/quote]
so judging in philly happened this past weekend (april 8-10).  when can we expect results to be posted?  how many days has it taken other locations to complete the process?

Jim is right, the turn around so far has been pretty darn fast... about a week. However, so far this year, I think there has only been one or two competitions to verify each week.  This week, there are a lot more competitions to verify.  I think there were 4 competitions to verify... compared to one or two the past few weeks... so it may take a tad longer due to the increased volume of paper to sift through this week!   

However, I am constantly impressed by how well orgainized this competition is, and how hard everyone works to get the results out to us hopefuls! 

Here's to hoping they contiue to far exceede expectations! ;D  (and save some wear and tear on the web pages refresh button)

3
Kegging and Bottling / Re: Growing the kegging empire
« on: March 23, 2016, 06:41:51 PM »
I have dual regulators, and a manfold off one of the regulators. Been that way for 5 years... and I keep adding onto the manifold.  (the other regulator has been adjusted so that all lines are the same pressure)

The big thing is that, if you have different pressures, you will need different hose lengths to get a good pour.   

In the end, I just have not seen the value of having two regulators  on the same CO2 tank.   

I thought I would value the ability to tweak individual kegs to different pressurs... but that has just not been something I have seen value in. 

The manifold... however, as I said, I have expanded in my fridge.  I recommend having individual shutoffs for each line.  It makes isolating gas leaks much easier, and you can isolate your lines if you need to do line maintenance.   

Enjoy!

4
Equipment and Software / Re: Water Filter Question
« on: March 23, 2016, 06:30:16 PM »
If the concern in Brass... Isn't the spigot and hose connections Brass?  Just thinking if there is a concern with the QD.... those are good things to change out too.





5
Kegging and Bottling / Re: Favorite Bottles?
« on: March 22, 2016, 04:30:37 AM »
One of the few bottles I have kept on the display shelf.

Never would put my beer into green glass, but the bottle is truely unique! 



6
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Oak Barrel situation
« on: March 22, 2016, 04:17:32 AM »
Looks like try filling and draining multiple times..

https://www.bluegrassbarrels.com/frequently-asked-barrel-aging-questions


My concern is if you sand the staves you will have to tighten the hoops, or they will never butt up to eachother again, or you could inadvertantly change their shape enough that they will no longer work correctly.  I have not heard of any copperages sanding staves, they just wedge them together inside the hoops and then tap the hoops into place.

There is also something called "barrel wax".   I have not used it, but it is reported to reduce oxidation by preventing gas exchange through the stave gaps.   

Good luck!

7
All Grain Brewing / Re: New Aluminum Brew Pot
« on: March 01, 2016, 06:47:48 PM »
I think the oil thing is more for conventional cooking.  Not really desireable for brewing I dont think.
I never did this to my pots, and no known issues.

I woud clean it with soap and water.  Possibly boil a pot of water just to make sure nothing from machining is left over in the flavor... and brew beer.


8
Ingredients / Re: Clarity Ferm
« on: February 28, 2016, 10:29:06 AM »
I used it on my most recent Vienna Lager (it is the recipe that I brew consistently... and use as a barometer for new processes)

What I found in a sample of one is....  when I transfered from the bucket to the keg, I had essentially zero  haze and stuff settleing out.   (I usually have half of the first pull from the keg have some stuff in it.. then it is clear after that)

Taste wise, I found it be no different and no effect on mouth feel.   

I picked up two or three more vials to try it on a few batches in a row and see what it does on a consistent basis.

Do I think it is worth 2 or 3 bucks a batch?   Not really compared to Gelatin.    Do I think it works with no noticeable effect.  YES!


9
Homebrew Competitions / Re: bottles for NHC
« on: February 28, 2016, 07:21:03 AM »
I have sent in shorter bottles than the "standard"  as long as the diameter is less than 2.75... you are good.  As for Sam Adams, I have sent in entries to competitions in the early days that were Sam Adams with no issue... but cant recll if it was NHC or not. 

In the end Sam Adams is likely ok.. but I would not send in one from any other brewery that had raised letters, as their limited distribution might make them "special". 

That being said, I dont think competitin organizers are trying to exclude anyone over petty things, but keeping the size easy to put into cases, and not pushing the limits is always a good idea.


10
Equipment and Software / Re: Fermenting Fridge
« on: February 23, 2016, 06:49:05 AM »
cut a hole in the side.... making a new door?
With the refigeration coils out in the way at the top.. they should be out of the way of the wall of the fridge (check first of course)

Thinking hinge at the top, gasket material or foam window stripping along the edge, and a latch on the bottom two sides that keeps the side shut.   Could even just screw the door on and off to get your beer in and out since it will only need to be opened a couple times a month...

11
All Grain Brewing / Re: Potassium Chloride
« on: February 22, 2016, 05:41:56 AM »
For the most part... I think how much KCl you add depends on what you are after. ... add a little and you wont really know it is there.  A bit more, and you dont know it is there... but some flavors shift and might be brighter or more muted.  Add enough, and you have invented the first  potato chip beer.   ;D

I did some looking to see if there was a rational behind using K instead of Na, and found the article here to be interesting:

http://www.eufic.org/article/en/artid/salt-potassium-blood-control/

I still am not big on adding essentially table salt to brewing water.    It kind of reminds me of adding table salt to an IPA... It changes things, just not how I enjoy it.  (but my boss loves it... so what do I know!)   

In the end, if you are going to add one vs the other, it appears we get plenty of Na in our diet.  K, we need a bit more, so add it and we can drink more beer for our health!




12
Kegging and Bottling / Re: How come Starsan turns cloudy?
« on: February 22, 2016, 05:11:18 AM »
FWIW I realize that clarity alone isn't the sole indicator of effectiveness. I test pH now and then to verify it's @ 3 or under. Just that since I started using distilled, I haven't measured it over 3 yet.

That was the key inidicator from a 5-star (makers of Star San) interview I heard many years ago on the Brewing Network.  (PH Below 3)

The cloudyness you see is the surficants coming out of solution (The soapish part that lets it get into crevices and causes the wonderful foaming).   If you leave your siphon hose in there a while, it will get cloudy too... even in RO based StarSan.   (Just rinse the stuff off and the hose is fine)

As long as the PH is ok, StarSan supposedly is OK, and I have used cloudy Star San enough times, I would expect that I would have had a major issue by now if it was not OK. 

If the cloudy bother you, then RO/Distilled water is the way to go. 

Good luck!

13
All Grain Brewing / Re: Potassium Chloride
« on: February 20, 2016, 05:52:39 AM »
Interesting idea.   

Not sure how potasium vs sodium would change things.  There must be some info out there about it from a food science point of view.

From a chemistry point of view, the ions are "the same".   I would not expect there to be much difference except that potassium chloride is probably harder to get and costs more.  (thinking water softner salt)

I dont add NaCL to my brewing water.  I usually stick with Calcium Chloride and Calcium Sulfate.     


14
Beer Recipes / Re: First Sour
« on: February 16, 2016, 06:53:20 PM »
Quote

I'm also a total noob to sour beer brewing and looking to give a small batch a try. Are you pitching the sour starter in with the wort and clean yeast right off the bat or waiting until sacc. does it's thing and then pitching this starter?

Both are good options, but all the versions I have done... Are a sac fermentation followed by a sour fermentation.    I like the strategy better. 

Ferment clean.  Transfer off the yeast and into a vessel with a sour culture.   It gives some ability to consistently tweak flavors one way or another.

15
Equipment and Software / Re: Fermentation Heaters...
« on: February 16, 2016, 05:36:40 AM »
I repurposed a Brew Belt I had from way long ago.   I just put it inside my freezer in the garage and let it maintain temperature with  a johnson controller.  (the same one that tells my feezer to cool in the summer time, but with the dip switch set for heat)

It just does not take much to keep the inside of the freezer at temp.  I would say 10 watts is plenty. 

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