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Messages - kramerog

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1
All Grain Brewing / Re: Was it something I did?
« on: April 18, 2014, 12:54:49 PM »
It would also explain why every once in a while, I'll have a batch where I get great efficiency. 

I used to have that highly variable efficiency problem.  Finer crush was probably the number one fix.  Looser mash (went from 1.25 lbs/qt to 1.5 lbs/qt) was probably the number two fix because mixing became easier and better.  Mash pH was probably number three.

2
Water bath with aquarium heater is what I use.

3
Equipment and Software / Re: Torn between purchases
« on: April 17, 2014, 01:43:27 PM »
It might be two weeks or so before I can spend that kind of money. But I'd do have a batch I am brewing tomorrow. I am not worried about this one because it stays at 67-68 degrees in my closet. Have you guys had much luck using a rubber tub and frozen water bottles?

That's what I use now.  Changing water bottles is a bit of a pain, so this summer I'm going to try to do more stuff with yeast that like warm ferm temps and bacteria, e.g, Australian Sparkling, Berliner Weiss, & Saison with DuPont yeast.

4
Other Fermentables / Re: optimum pH for mead.
« on: April 17, 2014, 12:54:05 PM »
Also the pH of mead tends to be quite low at least initially because honey contains a lot of gluconic acid, which is derived from glucose I believe.  Gluconic acid is like phosphoric acid in that it provides a watery acidity.  Acid blend uses acids that have a sharp, lingering character.  It is somewhat likely that adding acid blend may not change the pH much, but it has a big impact on flavor.

5
Beer Recipes / Re: Brewing a Wit today
« on: April 17, 2014, 11:58:15 AM »
I can't find the recipe anymore.  The link to the recipe at www.ipass.net/mpdixon is no longer valid!

6
Other Fermentables / Re: optimum pH for mead.
« on: April 17, 2014, 09:46:54 AM »
I don't think there is a standard optimum pH.  The optimum pH is a function of the sweetness, amount of tannins, and type of acids used.  Zymurgy and last year's AHA conference seminars, all of which can be viewed or listened to on this site, included an article/seminar about post-fermentation fixes like acidity corrections.

7
Ingredients / Re: Apricot
« on: April 17, 2014, 09:41:48 AM »
US-05 throws off a lot of peach esters which could work well for an apricot beer.  Of course, it is very attenuative, so you would have to mash very hot if you used it.

Dried apricots are pretty easy to get.  The ones from Costco are astonishingly good.   Dried apricots would have less of a nucleation point issue, I assume.  I don't know how well they would work flavor-wise relative to puree.

Anyway, I was thinking of making an apricot (dried) or peach (fresh) wheat ale this summer so let me know how things go.

I know at the time I shy'd away from dried fruit because a lot of it is sulphited and I thought that would screw up the bottle conditioning. Not sure if it would matter for kegging but it's a factor to consider with dried fruit from what I understand.

Good point.  If you add dry fruit at the end of primary, the sulfite, really the sulfur dioxide, will be stripped out.  The Costco dried apricots are preserved with sulfur dioxide and potassium sorbate.  I'm highly doubtful that the potassium sorbate would pose much an issue due to dilution and that high levels of potassium sorbate can be overcome with large quantities of yeast, which would already be present in primary fermentation.

8
Ingredients / Re: Apricot
« on: April 17, 2014, 07:40:56 AM »
US-05 throws off a lot of peach esters which could work well for an apricot beer.  Of course, it is very attenuative, so you would have to mash very hot if you used it.

Dried apricots are pretty easy to get.  The ones from Costco are astonishingly good.   Dried apricots would have less of a nucleation point issue, I assume.  I don't know how well they would work flavor-wise relative to puree.

Anyway, I was thinking of making an apricot (dried) or peach (fresh) wheat ale this summer so let me know how things go.

9
Events / Re: NHC Awards
« on: April 16, 2014, 02:37:37 PM »
While there is judging in the min-BOS that judging is not recorded on the judging sheets and cover sheet except as to the final placement of the beer in the category.

I suspect that you are correct that your beer placed 2nd in the flight, but did not place in the category.

10
Equipment and Software / Re: Battery powered brew stand?
« on: April 16, 2014, 01:51:16 PM »
I would think carefully about making sure that your sure electrical is protected from splashed water/wort and maintaining access for brewing so you don't move a pot and knock over a solar panel.

Calculating the electrical loads from pumping should not be very hard.  I'm not sure what resources are available for calculating the electrical loads from milling.  Perhaps you already have wattage measurements from milling already.

11
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Fermentation Timing
« on: April 15, 2014, 08:36:57 AM »
Less than two weeks of fermentation is the norm for me.  Big beers and finicky yeasts are the major exceptions.

12
Ingredients / Re: Dry hops Prior to Finished Fermentation
« on: April 15, 2014, 07:58:54 AM »
Also yeast may change chemicals contributed by hops, not necessarily bad.

13
Ingredients / Re: oats in Witbier
« on: April 14, 2014, 10:21:06 AM »
I think flaked would be traditional.

14
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Kids and Homebrew
« on: April 14, 2014, 08:29:19 AM »
My daughter helps with bottling.  She doesn't like the smell of wort so she is never around during brewing, which is fine by me.

15
You may get more sour in a few months.  Anyway, an eyedropper in a glass should work.  You'll need to figure out how many drops are in a ml.  Next figure out if what 1 drop/glass is equivalent scaled up to the amount of beer you want to sour.  If it works out to be a reasonable increment of lactic acid (5-10 ml would be great) then proceed with your experiment.  If it turns out to be unreasonable (let's say 100 ml) then use a bigger glass. 

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