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Messages - thcipriani

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Pics of recent brews?
« on: Today at 05:18:49 PM »

Finally got my hefe color right!

* 57% Weyermann Wheat
* 38% Root Shoot Odyssey Pils
* 5% Carahell


* 111°F 10 minutes
* 125°F 10 minutes
* Pull 1/3rd decoction: 160°F 15 minutes, boil 20 minutes
* 148°F during decoction
* 158°F 25 minutes
* 170°F 10 minutes

Photo info:

* Copyright 2018 Tyler Cipriani
* License: CC-BY-SA 4.0:
* Additional Information:

I currently use a Picobrew Zymatic. I had high hopes but it’s just not working for me. I want to invest in a SERIOUS system. Money not being an issue. What would you recommend? Can be electric or gas and the footprint is not an issue. I want something where the beer that is made could easily be scaled up. Blichman? Thanks for your input. Finally. I assume I wouldbrew 10 gallon batches but some flexibility in the volume would be a nice plus.

Blichmann is definitely an option. Blichmann is designed to be flexible and as a result requires a bit of configuration. There are folks who make nice fully built systems. The Cadillac of systems is probably the Brew Magic by Sabco ( or possibly B3 sculptures (

Is it just the scale of the picobrew? If scale is the whole problem, then the picobrew Z could be your answer.

There are unlimited options for folks with the space and the money depends on what kind of customization you want, how involved you want to be in the brew day, and which parts of the process you'd like to optimize for.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: "watery beer"
« on: June 05, 2018, 08:36:19 PM »
Pitch rate was a little tricky on this one. I used the WYEAST 1332. The original pitch had terrible viability (even with a starter), so I pitched a new one about 2 days in.

When I used to can starter wort, I did something wrong somewhere along the way, and I had a bunch of batches come out watery. I messed up yeast vitality or viability somewhere in there. At the time I was doing cell-counts (but not staining) for every batch. I was sure I was pitching the right amount of yeast, but not that the yeast was very healthy when I did pitch.

I finally figured out my problem when I skipped the starter for a batch and it came out tasting much better than the last few batches. My unsupported guess is this was a yeast problem: I'd try a changing up your starter procedure or skiping it and pitching a few fresh packs and seeing if that clears things up.

Commercial Beer Reviews / Re: Braupakt
« on: June 04, 2018, 10:23:43 PM »
Just bought a 6-pack of these and they totally break my brain. I initially smelled hefe with a little citrus, finish was all hops. After the initial sip I couldn't really find the hefe character again. I don't think I like hoppy-weizen beers. I'd rather have one or the other, I guess :)

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: "watery beer"
« on: June 04, 2018, 10:03:44 PM »
FWIW, I have a similar mash-tun situation as you (3 gallons under the false-bottom). It doesn't seem to affect the final product much apart from making it hard to hold temps steady. Doesn't seem like a lot of hops for an IPA, and it sure seems like a lot of lactic acid for such a thin mash; however, watery flavor (in my experience) seems to come from low yeast vitality. Large amounts of lethargic yeast make for watery beer. I don't see much discussion about your pitch-rates or procedures -- could that be a possible culprit in this instance?

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: How's your LHBS doing?
« on: April 18, 2018, 08:57:14 PM »
There are 2 shops close-enough to me to call them my LHBS. Both seem to be doing really well (although admittedly I'm not familiar with the finances of either). One interesting point about both is that they have tap rooms where they serve beer they brew in-house. Boulder Fermentation Supply/Vision Quest brewing is one of the tap rooms I frequent most-often. Brewmented in Longmont has a lot of guest taps from breweries around town. I still go out of my way a bit to go to Vision Quest because the beer is awesome.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash ph Delta Discrepancy
« on: March 15, 2018, 06:10:24 PM »
Also does your meter do ATC at all?

My limited understanding is that when folks say the pH differs by 0.35ish at room temp vs mash temp they mean the actual pH of the solution is different. It's also true that meters have to perform their own internal correction for temperture as well. That is, a meter with ATC will show the difference in the actual pH (~0.35) and a meter without it will have undefined behavior and just be unpredictably incorrect.

If your meter doesn't have ATC: might explain it. If it does: then TIL that ~0.35 might not be normal pH difference. I've never actually tried this with my ATC meter (as others have pointed out folk wisdom is it shortens probe life).

Self-moderation is awesome. Mods are awesome. I suppose I just think there might be some benefit in explicitly democratizing the moderation process a bit, or updating the rules with some of the modern heuristics.

Here's a quote from an essay by Jo Freeman with a heavy-handed url:
For everyone to have the opportunity to be involved in a given group and to participate in its activities the structure must be explicit, not implicit. The rules of decision-making must be open and available to everyone, and this can happen only if they are formalized.

The whole point of the essay is that if we don't codify structure and rules explicitly then we're taking power away from folks who aren't part of the current group of brewers i.e., new brewers or brewers who are new to the AHA or the AHA forum. And maybe we end up marginalizing some new voices not because of any malice just because: it happens.

Anyway, I posted this because I think that making the moderation process clearer might be an easy way to ensure that the brewing community keeps growing and stays healthy while it does so.

Thread drift happens and I don't consider it reason to close a thread.  That one came awfully close to getting shut down due to lack of civility, but it straightened itself out.  My theory is that the best moderation is the least moderation.  I'll do what I have to , but I try not to have a heavy hand.  In addition, all the mods discuss situations before any of us takes action.

It does seem like the hands-off approach worked in this instance -- the thread righted itself. I totally agree on the thread drift topic: up to individuals involved to determine when a thread has run it's course.

Are there any heuristics the mods used in this instance WRT to the discussion of civility that are worth talking about here? Could the discussion about this particular thread be opened up and talked about here?

I'm not sure that I believe that the inaction on that thread squares with the "will not tolerate" line:

We will not tolerate rudeness, insults, personal attacks, inflammatory remarks, threats, racial/ethnic slurs, trolling, flame baiting or similarly disruptive postings.

although everything squares with:

The mods reserve the right to take steps not addressed in these rules in order to maintain a friendly and helpful environment. The #1 thing to keep in mind is "DON'T BE A JERK!"

so maybe it's all fine.

Personal aside. I feel like I was moderately engaged here 2010-2012. I've dropped off to a few posts a year. I have a memory of being actively stressed during my participation on this forum. Which is goofy: it's a beer forum and I'm passionate about beer; but this thread definitely had a high stress level, too which made me think maybe there're more systemic things that can be done.

Also, another aside, thanks denny for replying to this and for doing all the hard moderator work! :)

Anyway, I'll be quiet for a bit and see if this topic has any legs or not.

So we don't lose where the discussion left off I'll just quote the last bit here:

This has gotten away from its purpose of brewing a traditional weissbier, imho

Sent from my SM-G955U1 using Tapatalk

Does it matter? I’d say the resulting discussion is infinitely more engaging.
That may be true.  But this started with the OP proudly sharing a simple recipe he'd worked long and hard to develop, and before long it was almost as if he got jumped on and told he was washing his socks wrong if it didn't involve use of the Large Hadron Collider. Not quite but it probably seemed that way to him.  Maybe we should be a little more alert and when a derailment or side topic is far enough removed from the original,  move it to a new thread.

FWIW, and this is from what I feel is mostly a community outsider perspective as I haven't been active on this forum in quite a while: this thread took a necessary early detour to address remarks that were not intended to malicious, but could have have easily been perceived as such.

The thread, likely, should have ended after that was addressed. As moderators (seemingly since this forums inception) have taken a very light touch it was up to participants who were at the point in a somewhat heated state to end the thread and move discussion elsewhere, but that didn't happen.

At this point it seemed to me when I posted my questions, there would be too much lost context to switch to a new thread.

I will second Big Monk's statement that this thread is a good read.

I'd like to propose that *this* discussion be moved to so that we don't end up creating context that will be lost in an un-searchable topic.

I haven't been very active on this forum in recent years, but I've been lurking and I reading throughout my absence. I recently stumbled across an awesome thread with some passionate discussion:

This thread initially took a bad turn. I feel that the assumption of good faith was violated by the main participants; however, in spite of the initial rejection of what I feel are the norms of online discussion groups, the thread got *really* interesting. It also got pretty off-topic for a recipe post. OP was no longer involved for one reason or another.

The thread turned to anarchy, fortunately it was mostly positive anarchy, which we probably own to the rigor of the participants more than anything else.

Currently there is an assertion that the thread should close the discussion as it's gotten waaay too offtopic. That's fine (I'm honestly disappointed by that outcome, but would accept it); however, rather than repeat the same mistake and lose important context on that discussion I've decided (unilaterally) to open a topic here to talk about moderation, thread derailment, and the responsibilities of participants.

Mods: if this is not where this goes, or has already been discussed in detail, feel free to move or close as you see fit.

To kick off discussion, AFAICT these are the only rules or guidelines for discussions that are posted: and they have gotten this forum a long long way so kudos to all involved in making that happen.

Are there other guidelines needed?

Are participants generally acting in good faith with those guidelines?

Who decides when a thread should close?

Is this a beer forum and should I just rdwhahb and this discussion is waaay too heavy and unnecessary? ;)

This has gotten away from its purpose of brewing a traditional weissbier, imho

Mea culpa. Sorry for threadjacking.

Beer is made in kettles and fermenters, not in computer models or spreadsheets. Just like weather is made in the atmosphere and not in the models that fail to predict it (my local forecast for yesterday was 12-18” snow, 12 hours before we got a little drizzling rain... stuff is complex, I’m not mad at em).

So what I'm hearing is: "supercomputer"

And finally, one factor that may muddy the science vs reality is the effect that pitch rate has on the length of the lag and log phases. Under pitching may simply lengthen these periods slightly, keeping the yeast in ester mode longer, thus resulting in more esters.

You also posted earlier about keeping yeast in log phase, but earlier referring to availability of O2:

Hmm... may want to revisit that hypothesis. Esters come from growth. The access to oxygen keeps a small pitch of yeast in the growth phase longer.

This gives me a bunch of questions that I didn't see the answers to in this thread or in Zymurgy:

Do you have a target pitch rate, or some proxy which approximates a target pitch rate (e.g., fresh vial in 1 qt starter at ~1.040)?
Do you add oxygen or air initially? Is there a target initial DO rate? Is there a nominal rate and then you count on availability of oxygen in headspace? Do you feel strongly about these things, or do you only feel strongly that it is the entire process that makes the difference (as seems to be what you're saying in the last post)?

I've been working on my hefe for years and I still fiddle with pitching rate and oxygen more than I fiddle with anything else, really. My experience has been: that's how I make wildly different beers from the same ingredients. I pitch low (~6E6/mL), and I do 90 seconds O2 at 1LPM. I used to do a mix-stir for O2 since some smart folks I respect pointed to low DO driving esters, but that hasn't worked for me.

Also, while I directed this a bit to hacksackr if anyone else has experience playing with any of these variables I'd love to hear about it.

Random aside:

I love this thread! I feel like a lot of dogma leaks into brewing which may help new folks climb the learning-curve faster initially, but I think it does a disservice to our shared community understanding. There's a lot of great brewing literature that amalgamates knowledge from thousands of years of trial and error. And there are so many paths to amazing beer that on paper don't seem like they'll ever work. The more I've tried those weird paths, the more I realize that I have no idea what's going to make a good beer, but I can try it and see if it works for me.

Great thread, thanks for still being passionate about this stuff folks <3

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