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Messages - tomsawyer

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: High Nitrate levels
« on: January 19, 2011, 01:14:32 PM »
One more and then I promise to quit:

The United States Public Health Service has established a specific standard of 10 milligrams of nitrate nitrogen per liter as the maximum concentration safe for human consumption. Problems in adults that drink water with excessive nitrate are essentially nonexistent and are rare in infants. The principal sources of nitrate and nitrite (NO2) for adults are vegetables and cured meats, which supply more than 95 percent of the total nitrate in typical diets.

So its not EPA but the US Public Health Service.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: High Nitrate levels
« on: January 19, 2011, 01:10:45 PM »
There are typically no toxic effects in adult humans, just in young infants.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: High Nitrate levels
« on: January 19, 2011, 01:07:56 PM »
How about vegetables then?

Currently about 65 of the average 73 milligrams of the nitrates we consume daily come from vegetables.  
The highest concentration of nitrates occurs in root vegetables and leafy vegetables such as spinach, lettuce and other greens.  The concentration and amount of occurring nitrates will vary depending on the type of vegetable, the temperature that it is grown at, the sunlight exposure, soil moisture levels and the level of natural nitrogen in the soil.  Foods that tend to accumulate the highest amount of nitrate include:

We all take in nitrate in our diets.  Maybe this water source does double the person's intake assuming they eat no cured meats.  But its not a matter of this water being the sole source of a toxic component.

Plus there is really not good evidence that nitrate consumption is even correlated with cancer.  Some studies say yes, others say no.

I think theres more compelling evidence that consumption of beer is bad for you.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Canadian 2-Row
« on: January 19, 2011, 11:45:09 AM »
I'll be finding out for myself this spring, I bought the MO instead of the domestic grain.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: High Nitrate levels
« on: January 19, 2011, 11:44:00 AM »
OK lets say 50mg, thats 5% of the nitrate in 1oz of summer sausage.  Theres no need to preserve meat with nitrate with the advent of refrigeration, so if nitrate is so dangerous why aren't summer sausage and all cured meats outlawed?  Its inconsistent at best.

Your opinion on EPA is as valid as mine, I've worked in areas that deal with EPA regulations for over twenty years (analytical chemist and environmental department) so I do have a basis for my opinion.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: High Nitrate levels
« on: January 19, 2011, 10:48:26 AM »
I'd be more worried about pesticides in the water, if there's residual fertilizer (assuming the nitrate isn't from a natural source) then you might be better off using activated charcoal.

Then again, I wouldn't be all that worried about it period.  You probably die faster from the worrying.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: High Nitrate levels
« on: January 19, 2011, 10:46:22 AM »
Theres probably a gram of nitrate in an ounce of beef summer sausage.  Drink a liter of beer made with 10mg/l nitrate and you've ingested 0.01g or 1% of the summer sausage.  I'd do both and not worry about it too much.  EPA has a habit of ratcheting down on limits for political rather than scientific reasons.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: High Nitrate levels
« on: January 19, 2011, 10:09:28 AM »
Won't the yeast use this as a source of nitrogen for amino acid synthesis?  I mean, you have urea and/or ammonium nitrate as a nitrogen supplement in brewing nutrient.  Id' think it would be safer to drink the beer than the water.  But certainly an ion exchange cartridge filter would be a good idea.

You live in an agricultural area?

All Grain Brewing / Re: Bookend APA Water? Ya
« on: January 19, 2011, 09:15:54 AM »
Bottom line, the water sticks to the grain but the salts and sugars move from bound to free water.

Your process is pretty close, you're just low by whatever percentage of sugar/minerals comes from your sparge.  Probably around 10%.  None of these flavor minerals is that touchy unless you're running right on the ragged edge of being too much.  And then I doubt its a matter of 300ppm SO4 being OK and 330ppm being awful.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Canadian 2-Row
« on: January 19, 2011, 07:31:04 AM »
The two base grains I keep in bulk are 2-row (CMC at the moment) and MO (Crisp).  There's enough of a diffference between the two that I feel it's worthwhile.  British/Irish styles get the MO, american styles get the 2-row.

Do you not like the MO for American styles?  Or is it mostly a matter of savings?

All Grain Brewing / Re: Canadian 2-Row
« on: January 19, 2011, 06:21:55 AM »
Its like American 2-row.  Good basic malt but probably not floor malted and lacking some of the character that makes Maris Otter special.  Still, the price makes you try it sometimes.  I'd at least go with the pale malt, thats got a little more kilning which I tend to equate with flavor.  Also I think MO is a pale malt right?

Strange that pale malt is darker than plain, but beer is full of stuff like that.  I guess it was pale back in the day.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Bookend APA Water? Ya
« on: January 19, 2011, 06:11:06 AM »
No you don't remove the bound water but you dilute the same as if it were free.  Otherwise sparging would be useless.  The stuff in that water equilibrates with the free water.  Its all about percentages, the percentage of bound water (and dead space volume) is your percent recovery of sugar from the mash (assuming we're batch sparging) and the ratio of free to bound in the sparge determines the second recovery which you add to the original for your total recovery.  If you get 70% out of first runnings, that means 30% of your water was left behind as bound/dead volume.  Then if your second addition bring you to about the same volume, you'll get anohter 70% of that 30%.

I just don't know if macromolecules like phytin might grab and hold charged molecules (salts).  Sugars aren't charged so they won't have attraction to oppositely charged solids.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Coconut Porter Souring
« on: January 18, 2011, 02:48:36 PM »
Maybe it is acrid notes from the toasting process?  You might let it sit out for a day after toasting.

I was thinking it might be the oil going rancid but coconut has mostly saturated fatty acids and as such its pretty stable.

Theres always natural coconut flavored extract, its a pretty good approximation.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Water adjustment with extract
« on: January 18, 2011, 02:27:14 PM »
Without knowing whats in the extract, how do you decide what to add?  Assume there's none?  Just add a modest amount?  i'd go with the latter, but I'm surprised no one has read what the salt content is on a common product like Briess DME.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: US-05...Best Deal?
« on: January 18, 2011, 02:25:20 PM »
I figured it would take a week, I was freezing small amounts (2ml) of yeast for awhile and it would take a good week to get them grown up too.

I use 90g of light DME for a 1L starter thats 1.030.  At $4/lb thats about $0.80 per starter.

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