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Messages - SiameseMoose

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Do you belong to a homebrew club?
« on: April 16, 2018, 06:15:19 PM »
Where's the option for, "I belong to MORE than one club?"  :D

Greater Cincinnati has multiple (>20) clubs, though realistically three of any size. I belong to the two biggest, both of which are over 20 years old. The two have different vibes, but there are great people in each, and there are a fair number of dual members. The third bigger club is much more of a neighborhood group, though they're well supported by their local brewery.

Ingredients / Re: Eureka - the best new hop since Mosaic
« on: March 17, 2018, 03:04:53 AM »
Regarding Michigan Copper, my LHBS (Listermann) has had it in stock for at least the last 6 months. It's clearly available to homebrewers.

The various varieties we did were all donated, and all were commercially available with one exception. Thanks to YCH Hops, LD Carlson, Hopsteiner, Hops Direct, and several local breweries for their donations!

Ingredients / Re: Eureka - the best new hop since Mosaic
« on: March 06, 2018, 05:46:54 PM »
We did an IPA hop program at my club last fall. 30 IPAs, all of the same recipe, each with a different single hop. The two revelations for me were Denali and Michigan Copper. In a vote among attendees, Michigan Copper was the overall favorite. Eureka was not very favored, though I don't remember the vote tally.

Beer Recipes / Re: Rochefort 6 clone
« on: January 24, 2018, 05:53:57 PM »
So this was potentially an incomplete sheet then? I don't see any specialty grains listed, unless they are counting the wheat starch. On the other hand, they may not be using specialty grains in the 6.
I don't think the sheet was incomplete. The conversation was so long ago that I'm struggling to remember precisely. He may have said add, rather than increase specialty grains.

At the time (2006) the big debate on homebrew forums over Belgian beers was whether they used candi sugar rocks or liquid candi syrup. At the time, we (me and the several other homebrewers there) were just happy to put that topic to rest. They used rocks, and the process of addition was rather unique at Rochefort. Storage for all ingredients was on the level above the brewhouse. Rather than carrying the rocks down a flight, they had an opening in the kettle stack on the upper level, and they dropped them in through the stack. Shortly after we got into the brewhouse there was a loud rattling, which we learned was the rocks banging their way down the stack. I wish I had my current camera back then, because I'd love to have a video with that sound.

Beer Recipes / Re: Rochefort 6 clone
« on: January 24, 2018, 05:01:24 PM »
I should add some of my discussion with the brewer, beyond just posting the picture. Gumar emphasized that the recipe does not scale well for size, especially for fermentation. They have changed the recipe several times to account for changes in equipment. It took them several years to get it right when they switched to conical fermenters. His general recommendation for the grain bill was to up the specialty grains, though I no longer remember the percentage he said to start with. Their fermentation cannot be copied on a homebrew scale. (OK, I say cannot. Somebody will try it!) They bottle on Mondays. They brew two batches each day Tuesday to Thursday, and one on Friday morning. All seven of those batches go into the same fermenter, right on top of each other. That keeps the yeast really happy. They ferment at 24°C, which is 75°F, constant temperature for the entire time. (No cold crash.) The week's batch gets bottled the following Monday, meaning the oldest wort was in the fermenter less than a week.
Remember that this discussion took place in 2006, so things may have changed. Good Luck!

Beer Recipes / Re: Rochefort 6 clone
« on: January 23, 2018, 02:07:23 PM »

I hope you can blow this up enough to read it clearly. It is the daily batch sheet from Rochefort, taken on the day of our visit, 15 October. 2006. Gumar was brewing 6 that day.

At HomeBrewCon ITW was showing a secondary pressure regulator that was pretty cool, and relatively cheap if you wanted multiple. You need their external regulator to set the in-line regulator, which screws onto a corny fitting, but then the individual pieces were cheaper than a bunch of secondary regulators. I bought one of their starter kits at the show, but I have not seen their stuff for sale anywhere since.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Rehydrating dry yeast
« on: December 14, 2017, 09:34:30 PM »
The story I was was told relates to osmotic pressure. For the cell to achieve an active metabolic state it has to pull a lot of water into itself to restart its cellular functions. In a solution full of sugar, the sugar tends to pull water into the solution, out of the cells. It is therefore harder for the cell to draw water in. Many cells do not survive the hydration step, and it is assumed (maybe been measured) that more cells die when trying to rehydrate in wort.

Of course, when you pitch a rehydrated cell into wort, the osmotic shock will kill some number of cells. Don't ask me which is the healthiest way for the poor yeast cell.

Ingredients / Re: Blood Orange
« on: January 24, 2016, 01:41:17 AM »
I'm going to second using the zest at the end of the boil and the juice in the secondary. I've done it in both a tripel and a saison, and I really like how it works. Remember to freeze the juice first, which effectively sanitizes it, before thawing and adding it to the fermenter.

All Things Food / The Gastronomy Lab
« on: September 21, 2015, 12:34:30 AM »
We recently returned from a trip to Spain (actually, Catalonia and the Basque area, two places that don't want to be part of Spain). While in San Sebastian (or Donostia, in Basque) we had a private cooking class. After hitting the local farmer's market for ingredients, we went to one of the local "Gastronomy Labs". This was a really interesting place. In San Sebastian, a city of 110,000, there are 230-ish "Gastronomy Labs". These are private clubs devoted to cooking. The structure is similar to a member-owned country club, with an initiation fee (small, but I did not hear an exact amount), and then you buy into ownership. The place we visited (allegedly the most exclusive in town) had a 200 member limit.

I found the whole concept intriguing. The place is essentially a restaurant, with a professional chef, but members have access to the kitchen to do their own cooking if they want. You can have the chef do everything, including buying and preparing all the food. You could bring your own ingredients and have him cook it, you can bring your own stuff and you cook it, or you can have the chef do the shopping and you cook it. It's all the same price (monthly dues), except if the Lab buys the food. You can make a reservation and treat it like a restaurant, although you'll get what the chef chooses, unless you make a specific request ahead of time. The other stuff you consume with your meal (drinks, etc.) are extra, but it's on the honor system. You fill out a sheet listing what you had and leave it at the desk when you leave.

These Labs are extremely popular in San Sebastian, and all have waiting lists for membership (up to 20 years). Our guide told us that they haven't worked elsewhere in Spain. The concept is just too foreign, and the honor system of payment always breaks down.
Our class started with local chorizo (Spanish, not Mexican-style) fried in olive oil, then local Padron peppers, pickled and served with an anchovy and an olive. We then had "rice in seafood sauce", what you and I would call seafood paella, but the Basque don't use "that Spanish word", and insist theirs is not the same. We followed with "cod in sauce", the sauce being a local specialty of olive oil and parsley, plus some other spicing.

We finished with an apple brandy cream cake. Wow!

I think the whole concept of these Gastronomy Labs is incredibly cool. In a big, dense city where most of the apartments (and 90+% live in apartments) have tiny kitchens it makes a lot of sense, but I can see how the honor system wouldn't work in most places. The class was great, and we plan to try out some of what we learned in the very near future.

Ingredients / Re: Ella hops
« on: August 19, 2015, 07:21:16 PM »
A local brewery, Rivertown (where Roxanne works), started using them two years ago as a test site. I thought it made for some great hoppy notes, but they weren't able to get a contract on them, so they're gone now.

Beer Travel / Re: Ireland
« on: July 29, 2015, 01:17:55 AM »
We were there two years ago. It was a tremendous trip. In no particular order (well, actually the order in which they're coming to mind), our highlights included:
The Irish Craft Beer Festival - not all that big, but then not massively overcrowded. One fun thing was meeting the Irish homebrewers. My wife is on the AHA Governing Committee, and at the time I was the president of our local club. Somehow the two of us talking to them got twisted into a message to their other members that "the President of the AHA is here!" It was a hilarious misunderstanding, and one guy asked for my autograph thinking I was Charlie Papazian.
My favorite beer was Metalman's Irish Pale Ale. We got to meet their brewmaster. I don't remember her name, but my wife was stoked that it was a woman.
We loved Galway. Galway Brewery has a beer named Hooker, named after the local fishing boat that has an upturned prow that looks like a fishing hook. My wife spent a lot of time trying to buy one of their T shirts that said "Call for a Hooker".
We took a ferry out to the Aran Islands. They were very, very cool!
Visit a fairy ring, preferably with a local guide who can give you some history.
The tour at Guinness is middling. The visit to the bar is great. The tour at Jameson's was a waste. The tour at Smithwick's was great, but that location is now closed.
Non-beer: Cliffs of Moher, Rock of Cashel (sp?), and the bus tour of Dublin were all great.

You will have a great time! The Irish people were very receptive to Americans, and it was the easiest European country we have visited in terms of understanding how to do stuff and get around. Apart from being on the wrong side of the road. Roundabouts in the wrong direction are scary!

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Liquid Yeast > Dry Yeast?
« on: June 23, 2015, 11:09:29 PM »
Belle saison (allegedly 3711) works fairly well, but that's it. The other dry Belgian strains leave something to be desired IMO. All things equal I still prefer liquid cultures, given the time to make a starter.

If Belle Saison is 3711 I'll eat my hat! I love 3711, and it's my preferred saison yeast. Belle Saison (BS?  ;D) is one I don't like at all. It's been an absolute lemon bomb whenever I've used it, and I've seen that in beers other people in my club have made.

Back to the original topic, I teach classes for the LHBS, and I always get questions about dry vs liquid. The comments in this thread are almost verbatim what I tell people. It's nice to have validation!

Very cool work! I'm glad I was able to be a data point.

I'm teaching class at the LHBS Thursday, and I always get asked by beginners about doing lagers. I'be been recommending using San Diego Super yeast, but I might mention this work (if it comes up, but it probably will).

If I'd known you were taking pictures I'd have turned around!

Events / Re: NHC 2016 Location
« on: June 17, 2015, 01:39:05 AM »
News to me there are any specific liquor laws prohibiting drinking beer in hotel hallways. I think this may have been a crotchety hotel rule.

It was an interpretation of legal separation of homebrew and commercial beer, and everything outside of the specific rooms of the conference was deemed part of the hotel liquor license, and therefore off-limits.

I'm just struggling to see who would even enforce that and perhaps it wouldn't have been a problem if the hotel just thought they were commercial beers.

"Lawyers were involved"

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