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Messages - mabrungard

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Beer Recipes / Re: Sierra Nevada Celebration
« on: Today at 05:56:49 AM »
I ask because I have it on very good authority (ie, one of their brewers) from another North Western brewery that does and as a result, the grain bills they use don't match what we can get out of our homebrew setups. 

Um, I'm going to have to call: BS. Using a mash press does not change the character of the wort that is expressed from the grist. It just helps speed the lautering. If it were true, all the BIAB brewers would be reporting the differences.

All Grain Brewing / Re: pH Balance.
« on: Today at 05:52:50 AM »
If the 5.2 Stabilizer product was all you were using, your results are right where they should be. Five Star needs to update their advertising to read: "Locks your pH at 5.8". That's about where the phosphatic salts in the product tend to buffer.

The fairly high alkalinity in your water seems to be overwhelming the buffering power of the 5.2 product, if your readings are 6+. In any case, you are wasting your time with this product. Acid addition is much more appropriate for adjusting mashing pH to 5.4 or less. In addition, acid is needed to neutralize your sparging water alkalinity so that tannin and silicate extraction is less of a problem.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Help Me Make a Better Brew Day
« on: October 12, 2017, 07:42:04 AM »
You can always give the summary of beer styles by country: Germans are fussy, English are not, Belgians don't care about anyone's rules, and Americans just want more of everything.

So concise and true!

All Grain Brewing / Re: Brewing Salts in Boil
« on: October 11, 2017, 12:34:16 PM »
I would add salts to the 20 gal of HLT water to create the water profile you want and then use only the amount of water you need for wort production. Waste the unused water.

Its important to understand that the alkalinity (bicarbonate content) of mashing and sparging water can be quite different. You may have differing acid requirements for each brewing component.

Unfortunately, I'm not familiar with the Kindle Fire. I don't expect that it has the capability to run Excel or LibreOffice...but I could be wrong.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Decoction mashing dark malts
« on: October 11, 2017, 07:17:42 AM »
Tannins are not an issue because of pH or some other voodoo.

In my opinion, the lack of tannin extraction is due primarily to the high osmotic pressure created by the high gravity wort that is part of the thick grist that is removed and boiled. That high gravity wort keeps the tannins in the husk materials.  I don't believe that pH is the primary reason tannins are (or are not) extracted into the wort.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Brewing Salts in Boil
« on: October 11, 2017, 07:11:38 AM »
Cal recommends adding your sparge salts to the boil after the hot break has occurred. I would have thought adding them prior to the hot break would be more beneficial in creating a healthy break. Any insights would be much appreciated. Thanks!

Curious recommendation. I can't envision a reason why that approach is more useful or beneficial than adding the salts to the sparging water. Calcium salts improve hot break formation and there is a minor reduction in calcium levels during the boil due to hot break entrainment and entrainment in the mash. In my opinion, there is no need for the extra few ppm of calcium in your finished wort since malt supplies ALL the calcium needed for yeast metabolism.

It sounds like the recommendation is intended to increase the wort's calcium content as much as possible. Adding calcium to brewing water does improve yeast flocculation and beer clearing, but its not a requirement for fermentation and producing a high quality brew. If clearer beer is your concern, just add a few more ppm of your desired calcium salts to the sparging water in the first place. 

All Grain Brewing / Re: Decoction mashing dark malts
« on: October 04, 2017, 11:44:42 AM »
I don't see a benefit from decocting the roast. I believe its already kilned to the point that there wouldn't be convertible starch. Adding the roast late in the mash works well in these styles that mainly need color and not the roast flavors.

Commercial Beer Reviews / Re: Sierra Nevada 2017 Oktoberfest
« on: October 04, 2017, 11:41:37 AM »
At my club's recent O'fest party, one of my Master judge friends with at least a half dozen trips to Germany said that the beer was too bitter for style. I think it 'might' be a little bit too bitter, but not enough to knock it from style. I still say its a fine beer.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Water hardness question...
« on: October 03, 2017, 12:32:55 PM »
Coarse bubbles are a result of insufficient time for carbonation. The CO2 must undergo a time-dependent, chemical hydration for the bubbles to morph into the fine bubbles we typically appreciate in beer.

With regard to the heading ability of your beers, have you altered your boil time? Long boil times are known to destroy head-building capability. Keeping your boil time to around 60 minutes is preferred for improving heading. Reducing the heat-stress that is placed on the wort (by reducing the energy input and covering the kettle), also helps improve heading.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Vinyl tubing smell question
« on: October 01, 2017, 06:51:37 PM »
Volatiles in the plastic will come out and affect the beer. One way to speed a chemical reaction (including volatilization) is to heat it. I preboil any vinyl tubing that I use in my brewery.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Water hardness question...
« on: October 01, 2017, 10:56:13 AM »
If I remember correctly, those levels of calcium and magnesium would probably put you in the moderately hard range. But besides that, hardness really doesn't matter in brewing. Taking care of the alkalinity is job one for brewers.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Smoked Helles Advice
« on: September 29, 2017, 05:38:28 AM »
There are so many better smoke sources than peat. Why are you using peat-smoked malt? Is there something I'm missing?

There are a lot of components in a hop aroma profile. 'Authentic' might be difficult to define.

There used to be flavor and aroma wheels on some of the hop producer's websites that could be helpful in categorizing the flavors and aromas that particular cultivars produce. I recall categories like: citrus, floral, herbal, woody, vegetal, etc.  There are plenty more.

All Grain Brewing / Re: When to check mash pH
« on: September 26, 2017, 09:38:13 AM »
by reducing the alkalinity are you in turn reducing the buffering capacity?

That is correct. Alkalinity is another name for the activity of the carbonate buffer system in water. High alkalinity is evidence that there is a lot of carbonate species in the water. The species present in water is dependent upon the water's pH.

PS: Alkalinity is not the same as pH.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Saison 'free-rise' didn't happen
« on: September 21, 2017, 05:17:37 AM »
If your fermenter isn't in a warm place, the temperature won't rise much. I ferment in my basement and have to place a heating pad by the fermenter to get its temperature up in the case of a beer like a Belgian.

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