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Messages - beersk

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All Grain Brewing / Lacking malt character
« on: December 10, 2014, 04:08:58 PM »
Hey, y'alls. I'm having an issue with my beers lately. I guess the best way to describe them is "overly clean" or just plain "lacking malt character". The beers are very drinkable, but just kind of missing something.

I use my tap water through a home RO system. The water is very nice and clean. I adjust water with Bru'n water spreadsheet. I usually shoot for the 50-75ppm range for calcium, chloride, and sulfate, adjusting, usually, with equal amounts of gypsum and calcium chloride in the mash and sparge.

Two things I can think of that would cause this: Too low of a mash temperature. I've been missing low lately, usually in the 148-150 range. So I've been mashing for 90 minutes because of it, instead of adding boiling water to raise or anything. I'm on a bigger system, so I'm getting used to higher water volumes.

Or, I'm not using enough calcium chloride in my water. It's usually around 2g for 5 gallons of mash/sparge water for 7 gallon batches.

I should also mention that these beers were Brewing Classic Styles bitter, Northern English brown, and a couple others that I can't think of right now. So they should have plenty of malt character, I'd think. Also the yeast was Wyeast 1335, which does indeed seem very dry and crisp, but it doesn't seem like the beers should be lacking that much malt character.

Any thoughts as to causes for a thin, kinda watery, lacking malt character, beer? My pH in Bru'n water is usually figured for the 5.3 range, and shoot for 5.4-5.5 for darker beers.

Thanks in advance.

Ingredients / Re: Golden shroomy
« on: December 09, 2014, 03:51:43 AM »
Does freezing mushrooms after vacuum packing rid the possibility of botulism? As I'm sure you know, vacuum packing mushrooms should never be done because of the risk of botulism.

Either way, I hope it turns out for you, Denny! Sounds pretty gross to me! And I love mushrooms...

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Used kegs
« on: December 09, 2014, 03:44:02 AM »
A friend of mine bought a couple kegs from AiH when they were $89 a piece for 5 gallon kegs. They're great quality. I'd buy them for sure. I'm seriously considering getting a couple 2.5 gallon kegs from there when they have another sale. They had them for $69 on Black Friday...didn't have any money though.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: What's Brewing over the Holidays?
« on: December 09, 2014, 03:36:28 AM »
Brewed an oatmeal stout yesterday. Brewing a taddy porter in 2 weeks, that'll be the last of the year. That'll put me at 31 batches for the year.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Used kegs
« on: December 05, 2014, 07:28:03 PM »
Man, used kegs are getting pricey. At this point, I'm buying all new.

Equipment and Software / Re: What is the purpose of a Grant
« on: December 05, 2014, 07:23:44 PM »
That recirculation is also known as Vorlauf. That is the process of taking the initial runoff that has a lot of 'fines' from the grain bed and recycles them onto the top of the bed where they are filtered out of the wort. The velocity of flow diminishes as you move away from the drain and into the bed. It is the velocity that has the ability to move fines. Where the flow velocity of low enough, no more fines will be moved into the wort runoff.

You only want relatively clear wort in the kettle since those fines from the grain bed can add astringency to the wort.
Hmmm, this didn't really answer the question as to what a grant is/does. I've always kinda wondered myself...

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Help with English yeasts not fully attenuating
« on: December 05, 2014, 04:51:31 PM »
The number one reason why English strains fail to attenuate properly is...

...because they've been using 15-25% adjuncts in all their beers for the past 100 years!!  It's as if they've steered natural selection to attenuate poorly.  Eat nothing but Big Macs for a month and see how healthy you turn out!

That's my theory which is also based on fact.

Do as the English would do..... add a whole bunch of simple sugars, or change your yeast, or both.
Interesting theory, but I'm not convinced. There has to be something else.

I'd suggest the OP mash a full 90 minutes and definitely recalibrate the thermometer. I've had attenuation issues with English yeasts as well. But I think that was mainly because the fermentation temperature wasn't as warm as it needed to be for long enough. It would reach 68 during peak of fermentation, but drop down as fermentation was winding down. I think this hurts attenuation. I try not to brew with English yeasts during the colder months when I don't have a way to keep the beer warm.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Lack of hot break at beginning of boil
« on: December 05, 2014, 04:44:35 PM »
No fermcap here either.

Dunngood, I am using the same grains I've always used. I think it must be from doing 6-7 gallon batches in a 16 gallon Bayou classic pot. Little volume, bigger surface area...I mean, there is SOME hot break, but I never have too much foam...just a little as it's coming to a boil, then it drops back down pretty quickly. When I brewed inside on my stove with my taller, narrower kettle, it would want to boil over if I didn't watch it.
I used to brew outside a few years ago with a different Bayou Classic kettle, an 11 gallon pot, and it would want to foam up and boil over at the beginning. My friend uses that kettle now and he has that issue. But I haven't had much foaming with this new kettle... So I was wondering what potential causes and/or problems that would imply.
No problems with beer clearing...just over analyzing like I am wont to do.

Instead of pre-chilling water, chill with your normal water to 80-100F or whenever it stops cooling quickly. Then switch to running ice water through the chiller using a pump. It'll be much more efficient and keep a high temperature difference when you get to lower temps.
This is what I do when the tap water is too warm.

Quote from: wort-h.o.g.
great-thanks for the info. picked up 1/4HP with garden hose fitting-30 gals per minute so should be good to go. $47.55 delivered tomorrow on amazon prime.
You might want to consider getting a shockbuster deal too.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Bottle cleaning
« on: December 04, 2014, 01:55:02 PM »
I rinse the bottle right after pouring into a glass a couple times with hot water and then just sanitize with Star San when bottling.  I've never had a problem.

Same here, and I store my bottles upside down.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Commercial Bottle w/o Cap Came Out Super Sour
« on: December 04, 2014, 01:51:40 PM »
No cap? How did the beer not spill out during transit?

Interesting article. Thanks for posting.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Bottling Logistics
« on: December 03, 2014, 01:48:58 PM »
Shizer! I think it may be under-carbed. There was some thick residue left in my pot which I assume had some sugar in it. Otherwise, business as usual, can't wait to stop bottling.
Bottling still definitely has its place. I like to brew 7 gallon batches and bottle the remainder after the keg is full. Since I ferment in 5 gallon cornies, I can bottle right off the fermenter with a little honey in each bottle. It's pretty sweet, I can create an archive.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Bottling Logistics
« on: December 02, 2014, 02:13:01 PM »
Yeah, once you get your system down, you should pretty much know what your final volume is going to be and be able to calculate your priming solution from there.
I add it hot as well. If you cold crash it'll cool the priming solution even quicker.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: cold crashing before bottling
« on: December 01, 2014, 06:11:04 PM »
Definitely okay to crash for up to a few weeks before bottling.

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