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Topics - bspisak

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All Grain Brewing / Beta-Glucans and Fermentability, Body and Head.
« on: May 15, 2010, 06:56:07 AM »
Noonan in New Lager Brewing pp26 says,

"One of the consequences of forced malting is insufficient hydrolysis of beta-glucans to glucose by beta-glucanase enzymes which are denatured above 140F and do not usually survive kilning.... With reasonably well converted malt, manageable amounts of beta-glucans may be liberated from hemicellulose by proteolytic enzymes during a 95-113F (35-45C) mash rest and contribute to a beer's fermentability, body, and foam head."

Palmer in How to Brew, 3rd pp145 says,

"Most of the beta glucan in barley is degraded during malting (from 4 to 6% by weight to less than 0.5%) ... for well-modified malts."

What this seems to be saying is that for well-modified malts, beta-glucanase has been denatured and is no  longer available to break down the 0.5% of remaining beta-glucans. However, by resting the mash at 95-113F the proteolytic (!?) enzymes will free up these remaining beta-glucans such that they can contribute to a beer's fermentabilty, body and head.

So, does this make sense to anyone?

Yeast and Fermentation / Oops - Skipped my diacetyl rest. Now what?
« on: February 25, 2010, 12:15:39 AM »

I made a Kolsch with 2565 with an 8 day primary fermentation at 60F, then racked to a secondary for another 7 days at 60F then took it to 45F to get the yeast to floc. The next step is to slowly drop it to 32F. This schedule was recommended by another brewer more experienced with lagers than I.

Anyway, I somehow dumped my first hydro sample when I racked to secondary and didn't sample it again until now (at 45F.) The problem is, I can taste diacetyl. It's not strong, but definitely there and if it remains at this level, it will not be to my liking. I'm certainly more sensitive than some to diacetyl, so again, the levels aren't high, but detectable and I'd rather have them cleaned up a bit.

So, my question is what to do?  Is it too late to do a diacetyl rest? I brought the beer back up to 65F last night and the yeast were rousted a bit from me moving the carboy. I didn't want to roust too much because I've been told 2565 is a b**** to floc, and that was the whole point of the crash from 60F to 45F. Should I add some yeast nutrient to get them active again?  Or should I have just left it alone?

From what I understand about lager fermentations, the yeast stay active even at lager temps, so should I just drop it slowly to 32F and wait it out?  Will it clean up?  If so, what's the point of a diacetyl rest?  What level of diacetyl do you have to be at before you have to worry about it not cleaning up during lagering?


Yeast and Fermentation / WLP002 Attenuation
« on: February 23, 2010, 06:07:49 AM »

So I made an American Amber with an OG=1.074 and pitched a WLP002 starter. It ended up at an FG=1.016. That's an apparent attenuation of 77% which is good for this yeast (White Labs says 63-70% is typical.)  However, the beer was still too sweet on my palate. So, I pitched some WLP001 and that brought it down to 1.013, for a final attenuation of 81.5%  Tastes much better.

So, my question is, what do people see with WLP002?  Is that kind of attenuation more typical, or did I just get lucky?

I've also heard folks have good luck with rousting and even adding some extra yeast nutrient and/or simple sugar partway through fermentation.  Same question as earlier: Will WLP002 attenuate even further doing this?

Finally, I overshot my mash temp of of 154 and hit 158. I knocked a couple of degrees off that such that my mash profile was something like 158->156 for 10 minutes, then 156->155 for 50 minutes. So, my next question is, if I would have hit a lower mash temp, would WLP002 have attenuated even more?  Or should I always plan on pitching a finishing yeast

As an interesting side note, I had heard of people using beano, but the it keeps breaking down dextrins until it is done or denatured at 130F. So, as an experiment, I took two equal 1/2 gallon growlers and fermented one with straight WLP001 and the other with WLP001 plus a beano tab.  As already stated, the one with just WLP001 went to 1.013. The interesting thing is that the one with the beano finished at 1.001 and it may not yet be done!  It still had some bubbles. 


General Homebrew Discussion / PIlsner Break
« on: January 16, 2010, 04:19:33 AM »

First time brewing pilsner.  Usually brew ales.  Got a huge chunky break soon after boil.  ???

Is that hot break?  Pretty early?  Is it something specific to PIlsner malt? 


General Homebrew Discussion / Iodine Test from WHERE?
« on: January 16, 2010, 04:14:17 AM »

So, I'm waiting for my pilsner mash at 147 to convert.... keep testing from the top of the mash and keep getting black.  I'm pushing 2 hours and still showing starch... light bulb... I check from a bit of runoff from the valve and viola!  I show good.  I test again from the top and show black.

So... what's going on?


I have a straight braided line as a manifold in my mash tun and usually batch sparge. I recently used this setup and did a fly sparge and got horrible efficiency. Is it because of my manifold?  I would think fly would give better results then batch on a given tun design, but maybe that's not the case?  Maybe I'm just barking up the wrong tree?

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