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Ingredients / Re: Considerations making candi with lime
« on: November 17, 2018, 09:36:19 PM »
I did the DAP method tonight and it went REALLY WELL! Wish I'd done it this way first.

Terminated slightly over 143C (290F) and got loads of figs and raisins, with a touch of toast but not at all burnt.  Very dark and complex taste.  Can't wait to add it to the fermenter! Taking the relaxed view of ph then, in the light of your comments.  8)

Ingredients / Re: Considerations making candi with lime
« on: November 15, 2018, 10:57:12 AM »
I'm going to try using DAP.  It apparently breaks down to provide the nitrogen for the Maillard, and acid for the inversion.  Searching further led me to a thread elsewhere from 2009.  It distinguishes clearly between caramel browning and Maillard reactions, but (contrary perhaps to the Sui Generis blog) isn't fixed on developing the latter in an alkaline solution.

In a flip to my original question, should I bother factoring in the phosphoric acid produced by (maybe 12g) of DAP, that ends up in 5g of wort?

Ingredients / Re: Considerations making candi with lime
« on: November 14, 2018, 03:12:40 PM »
Well another failed attempt and a burnt finger later, and I just wish we could get hold of D-90 or 180 over here in the UK!

Robert - the blog (part 3) addresses the acid (for inversion) thing, saying that very little of the mix needs to be inverted before progressing, in their view.  However, I didn't have dextrose to hand this time, so I guesstimated a tbsp of golden syrup, which is partially inverted, and prevented crystals well into the attempted Maillard phase.  I say 'attempted', because my lime clearly wasn't enough or as effective as in the video on that blog.  I had crystals gathering all around before I got the darker colour and had to stop before getting there.

I'm not sure how many more attempts I can face - it's a lengthy process of trial and error!

Ingredients / Considerations making candi with lime
« on: November 11, 2018, 01:35:44 PM »
I'm attempting to make some candi syrup using pretty much the method in the Sui Generis blog.  This does away with the idea of using an acid to aid inversion, for reasons best explained in the blog. In short, he says it inhibits Maillard reactions; essentially if you use an acid, you are making inverted and caramelised syrup rather than a 'maillard' candi.

I have some lime, and once I've sorted out the problem of crystals forming during the initial (part) inversion stage, before it's added, I want to know whether I need to neutralise the alkalinity of the candi syrup at the end (and how best, if so).  It seems like there would be enough lime just in the candi to affect the alkalinity of the wort significantly.

Any thoughts on this would be much appreciated; it covers quite a few areas of expertise!

Beer Recipes / Re: First Black IPA recipe; critique please
« on: April 24, 2018, 02:42:33 PM »
Jim - It's dropped to 1.0175 (check me, scraping out every half point! It was around 1.0185 before, so I'm calling that a point...), having had 10 days in primary and not moving.  It is not excessively sweet at all, and the bitterness is more noticeable than it was a few days ago, and it's pretty much cleared down.  Some of the greenness has dropped out too.  I would no longer describe it as particularly porter-like, and I'm hoping it is just a black(ish) IPA awaiting its dry hop! Currently chilling down to 59 for the large dry hop.  It's tidy enough for me to follow through with the recipe, without adding any sugar.

Beer Recipes / Re: First Black IPA recipe; critique please
« on: April 21, 2018, 08:40:38 AM »
My experience has been that 1.25-1.5 lbs of carafa 3 or midnight wheat added at lauter has been the perfect amount for pitch black. I now usually go with (per 6 gallons wort since I lose a lot to dry hops), .5 lbs crystal 40-60L and 1-1.5 lbs Munich have been my sweet spot.

Sent from my SM-G960U using Tapatalk

I guess mine is a lot paler then, as I only put about 2/3lb Carafa III in my ending 5.5 gallon batch, which would also be about 6 gallons before kettle losses to trub/hops, though it was all in the mash, and my crystal was darker.  It's definitely dark brown in the pour rather than black, though once it gathers in a sample jar/glass, it's JUST about dark enough.  I've had commerical examples that are a similar 37-40 IBU.

At the moment it tastes very loosely like an English porter.  No acrid roast in there, more chocolate.  I'm allowing for some bitterness from the big dry hop to come, but I do wonder whether a sugar addition would help to dry it out and raise the relative balance/bitterness a little. 

I can't force carb any Jim, but I guess some sparkle in there may cut the high FG a bit... maybe.

Adam, I don't have anything going, though I would acclimatise some SO4 in a starter if I thought it was a yeast issue.  It's at 75%AA and the 007 normally dries things out OK, so I think it was the grain bill, and my mash was 154 in the end.

I've raised it up to 70f in the primary now, and I think I will lower it down gradually to 59 when it's time to add the hops, just to keep the yeast as happy as possible along the way. 

Beer Recipes / Re: First Black IPA recipe; critique please
« on: April 20, 2018, 08:45:45 PM »
Well I went with the grains as listed above, but it looks like this is stopping out around 1.018 from and OG of 1.068.  It may drop another point yet, but it's certainly almost there.  A bit high.

I've seen some BIPA recipes with a sugar/syrup addition.  I'm wondering whether I should still do that now, just to thin it out a bit; all the hops so far were whirlpooled, so my bitterness is low, and some extra alcohol won't hurt with the amount of dextrins left in there.  Is this a good plan?

I'm going to give it all the dry hops together in secondary - I didn't bother with the small addition mid-primary in the end, and any diastatic effect from the hops is yet to come.  I reckon that the combination of a high FG and a heavy dry hop is a dangerous combination for bottling, when I would typically dry hop at a lower temperature than primary, not that any sugar addition reduces that risk.

Beer Recipes / First Black IPA recipe; critique please
« on: April 11, 2018, 08:52:14 AM »
Any comments welcome - this is a first attempt for me! Cheers

Colour - I want it to be 'black' in the glass, not brown.  Dark brown in the pour and at the extreme edges would be OK.  I know that sounds unimportant, but I will be disappointed if I produce a brown IPA! Does 37 SRM sound enough? That's Brewmate's prediction, which tends to be about right on my rig.

Taste - I want a reasonable contribution from the carafa - my goal is not to produce an IPA that happens to be coloured black - but neither do I want anything acrid, charred, or just a mess.  The best black IPAs I've had manage to tread that line really well.  Hops wise, am I OK to go entirely for flameout and later, as per below? I always seem to end up with enough bitterness one way or the other.

I will prepare the water to around 90ppm CaCO3, 100 Ca, 100 Cl and 75 SO4

5.25 gal batch to around OG 1.071

Crisp Pale (Flagon) 85.5%
Munich I 5%
Crystal 80 (SRM) 5%
Carafa III (700SRM) 4.5%

153f Mash for 60 mins
WLP007 1.5L shaken starter
Ferment at 63f


None in boil

Flameout: 0.33 oz Citra leaf + 0.33 Galaxy leaf

185f: 0.33 oz Citra leaf + 0.33 Galaxy leaf + 0.33 Centennial pellet

176f: 1.33 Citra leaf + 1 oz Galaxy leaf + 0.5 Centennial pellet

Allow to cool to 167f then hold for 15 mins.

Dry Hop 1 (FV High Kraeusen @63f): 0.33 Citra pellet + 0.33 Galaxy pellet

Dry Hop 2 (FG, secondary @59f; 3 days): 3 oz Citra pellet + 3 oz Galaxy pellet

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Transfer/bottling temperature vs oxygen
« on: April 07, 2018, 06:32:49 AM »
Ideally, when done the beer will have more CO2 than is in air and no O2 at all. So left open to the air, O2 will equalize by entering the beer and CO2 will equalize by leaving the beer.

Pressures not percentages... beer will never be 70% nitrogen.

OK, I think I get that.  8) So while there may be an overall equilibrium in pressure, the increased interface with the air during a transfer can speed up the rate that the proportion of gases in the beer start to match those in the air.  And with that being nearly 21% oxygen and only 0.04% CO2, that's bad news.  I've learnt something today, thanks.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Transfer/bottling temperature vs oxygen
« on: April 06, 2018, 12:50:34 PM »
I keep running this through my head, and something still puzzles me: if a beer has finished absorbing X amount of CO2 and anything else from the head space at a given temperature, at atmospheric pressure, then why do we consider transfers into new vessels to be such an oxygen risk? Doesn't it follow that it can't pick up more oxygen or anything else from the air, unless the pressure or temperature changes?

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Transfer/bottling temperature vs oxygen
« on: April 04, 2018, 01:55:10 PM »
Interesting comments, thanks.

Cold beer warming up will release CO2 during transfer and bottling, which makes sense, which, may provide some sort of blanket (though some of what is released is presumably what has been absorbed from the air, not just CO2).  Hope I got that right.  I guess that the cold beer will have reached a point of equilibrium with the atmosphere by the time of transferring and bottling, so my question as to whether it will absorb more air than warmer beer at that time is moot; it can't absorb any more (without chilling further).  So potentially some upside to bottling a cold beer in warmer vessels, but none in warming it up first.

As a side note, despite selling my keg equipment last summer, I still have a 7Kg gas bottle, which I have been able to use on its own to purge the headspace of the secondary a few times.  Not a precise operation, but seemed worth doing.  I will purge the bottling bucket too, as best I can, and maybe even a few of the bottles going in a competition!

Kegging and Bottling / Transfer/bottling temperature vs oxygen
« on: April 02, 2018, 08:03:31 PM »
Never considered this before, but is there any value in me letting my NEIPA warm up before bottling? If I transfer it to the bottling bucket and bottle it at its current 34f, I guess it will absorb more oxygen during that process than at a higher temperature... though how much more, I have no idea. 

Considering how much lower we have to set the CO2 pressure on kegs for a certain vols of CO2 at (say) 41f versus 53f, the potential for colder beer to absorb gas more easily seems clear, but I haven't seen the issue discussed.  Maybe I'm missing something.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Saison 'free-rise' didn't happen
« on: September 28, 2017, 06:42:47 AM »
I think your problem is that the bulk of fermentation was done by the time you cut off the fridge. Most saison strains are aggressive yeast. I've never used that particular strain but expect most exothermic fermentation occurring before you cut off the fridge.

Normally with commercially available saison strains (like 3711, which is similar to Belle's dry strain) I would start in the low 70s and hold there for about twelve hours and then let it free rise up to the mid-80s. It will get into the mid-80s within a day. Once it hits that temperature I'd set the heat to maintain for a few days and then let it cool back to room temperature once fermentation ends.

Thanks for sharing.  I guess if I do it again, I won't have the cooling side on at all.  So you get it driving itself from low 70s to mid 80s with the ambient remaining low 70s? That's more like I was hoping, though after the 30 hours.

I guess I should check: do you all see the term 'free rise' as meaning a rise in heat well beyond ambient, generated solely by the  fermentation, with the ambient temperature initially remaining unaided, at the pitching temperature, like I do? I've now seen a post elsewhere where they pitch at 66 with the fridge set to 77 from the outset, and call that a 'free rise'.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Saison 'free-rise' didn't happen
« on: September 21, 2017, 12:42:06 PM »
I just fancied seeing what the yeast would do on its own, given a safety net of 66.

The fermenter was inside the brewfridge with a tube heater set to 66 (probe taped to the side of the FV under a little insulation).  After 30 hours, the fridge side of the control was turned off, but the heater was left to cut in below 66.  The fermenting beer was never allowed to drop lower.

Now I'm thinking maybe I should have placed the probe in the air space, rather than the outside of the plastic bucket, on this occasion.  The fridge itself was in a colder environment.

Yeast and Fermentation / Saison 'free-rise' didn't happen
« on: September 21, 2017, 08:42:24 AM »
My first saison on the go, but it hasn't produced the 'free-rise' I was hoping for, so I've had to apply the heat manually.  Anyone had successful self-rises with Belle Saison?

It was 22L of 1.041 pitched with one rehydrated sachet of BS at 66f.  Nice head of yeast after 12-18 hours. I controlled it (fridge/heat) at 66f for 30 hrs before turning off the cooling side.  It stayed pretty much there at 66, edging up maybe 2 degrees at 42 hours before the head started to fade a little and it seemed to be returning to 66, so I took an SG (1.027) at 48 hours for future reference, and set the heat for 69.  It soon looked more active again, and it's now up (manually) to 73 on day 4, but never produced it's own lift.

I've seen reports of this travelling the same difference unassisted.  I perhaps left the calcium a little low (~50ppm) compared to most of my brews, but other than that, I can't think anything else would have caused it to be sluggish.

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