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Messages - kgs

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31
All Grain Brewing / Re: Low Oxygen Conclusions?
« on: December 28, 2016, 09:26:17 AM »
Water: "bring to a boil and hold for 5 minutes" -- I usually get my water ready to boil the night before, so this step would be simple enough. Can this step be done a few hours earlier than the brew, or would oxygen sneak back in during the dead of night?

Mash: "drain wort into kettle" -- sometimes I mash the night before, drain into the brew kettle, put the lid on and then turn the BK on as soon as I wake up. Would holding the wort overnight reintroduce oxygen?

SMB -- sodium metabisulfite -- to be clear, this is what's in Campden tablets, right?

I'm not the expert, but I don't think either of those practices is compatible with low oxygen brewing.

I believe some Campden tablets are SMB and some are potassium MB.  According to the original lodo paper, one campden tablet contains 440 mg of SMB.

Thanks. I think I must know a chemist or two to answer the first question.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

32
All Grain Brewing / Re: Brewing Science vs. Citizen Science
« on: December 27, 2016, 09:53:00 AM »
Should home-brewers be concerned with scientific literature from the pro brewing industry regarding brewing chemistry?   In general, I think the answer is no. Most home-brewers have more basic things to focus on to improve their beer.

I'll admit to bringing up some more involved concepts in threads where it doesn't belong, especially where beginning brewers are involved. Intermediate to advanced brewers should take in all sources on brewing science though. It all applies at every scale. You may need to tweak it to be applicable but the concepts are scale invariant.

 
If the brewer goes through the beer quickly or doesn't care about competitions or wants to make the best beer with the least amount of expense and effort and have fun at the same time then the answer is still "No." 

I push back on this because applying advanced concepts won't take any of the fun out of brewing. Yes, it may add some equipment costs (upgrades, automation, etc.) and it may take an incremental increase in effort to accommodate, but it shouldn't be inherently less fun.

But that assumes we're all in agreement on the definition of "fun." Qualitative research in hobbies shows that people vary widely in their motivations and in what determines for them what "fun" is. I found "Homebrew All-Stars" interesting because it classified homebrewers by type of motivation, which could be an auspicious direction for future research into sustaining homebrewing as an active hobby in between beer crazes (and perhaps keeping homebrewers in the hobby during the life periods when they tend to drop out, and attracting new demographics). Clearly there is room in this hobby for the "advanced concepts" crowd, and I'm guessing this crowd benefits the rest of us by findings that eventually improve homebrewing overall. But homebrewers who prefer to direct their time, effort, and money in other directions aren't wrong. I wrote elsewhere once upon a time that "the user is not broken," and in this case, the homebrewer isn't either.

33
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Another newbie...
« on: December 27, 2016, 08:20:33 AM »

Sometimes bucket lids don't seal properly and it is easier for the gas to escape through the leak than the airlock. From the sounds of it your beer is fermenting away. Get a rubber mallet and gently tap around the bucket lid and see if it will seal.

In the past I have used my hands or a mallet. This morning I became concerned because I hadn't seen any airlock activity on an ESB brewed two days ago, and I've never not observed ANY airlock activity in 8 years of brewing. I used my hands and the bucket lid seemed tight. The bucket is on the floor (in the best spot in the house to keep it between 66 and 68), so I gently applied my knee in several spots. On the third or fourth try, I heard a soft click. I generally avoid opening buckets during fermentation, but just to make sure, I briefly opened the bucket and could see the yeast was very busy. I used my new "knee to the bucket" method to ensure a tight seal once I closed it up, and the airlock immediately began clicking away.
I recently ditched the bucket for fermenting. Soeidel makes a nice setup with screw to lids and gaskets.
category/speidel-plastic-beer-fermenters.html

Was there a reason to move from buckets to the Speidel? I went from buckets to Better Bottles and back to buckets (I use 5-gal food grade buckets for 3-gal batches). My last tweak in the process was to drill a couple of the buckets for spigots so I can now drain directly from the bucket into the keg.
You dont have to kneel on the lid to close it.

Eh, to each their own. :-)

34
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Another newbie...
« on: December 26, 2016, 07:32:09 PM »

Sometimes bucket lids don't seal properly and it is easier for the gas to escape through the leak than the airlock. From the sounds of it your beer is fermenting away. Get a rubber mallet and gently tap around the bucket lid and see if it will seal.

In the past I have used my hands or a mallet. This morning I became concerned because I hadn't seen any airlock activity on an ESB brewed two days ago, and I've never not observed ANY airlock activity in 8 years of brewing. I used my hands and the bucket lid seemed tight. The bucket is on the floor (in the best spot in the house to keep it between 66 and 68), so I gently applied my knee in several spots. On the third or fourth try, I heard a soft click. I generally avoid opening buckets during fermentation, but just to make sure, I briefly opened the bucket and could see the yeast was very busy. I used my new "knee to the bucket" method to ensure a tight seal once I closed it up, and the airlock immediately began clicking away.
I recently ditched the bucket for fermenting. Soeidel makes a nice setup with screw to lids and gaskets.
category/speidel-plastic-beer-fermenters.html

Was there a reason to move from buckets to the Speidel? I went from buckets to Better Bottles and back to buckets (I use 5-gal food grade buckets for 3-gal batches). My last tweak in the process was to drill a couple of the buckets for spigots so I can now drain directly from the bucket into the keg.

35
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Another newbie...
« on: December 26, 2016, 10:10:51 AM »

Sometimes bucket lids don't seal properly and it is easier for the gas to escape through the leak than the airlock. From the sounds of it your beer is fermenting away. Get a rubber mallet and gently tap around the bucket lid and see if it will seal.

In the past I have used my hands or a mallet. This morning I became concerned because I hadn't seen any airlock activity on an ESB brewed two days ago, and I've never not observed ANY airlock activity in 8 years of brewing. I used my hands and the bucket lid seemed tight. The bucket is on the floor (in the best spot in the house to keep it between 66 and 68), so I gently applied my knee in several spots. On the third or fourth try, I heard a soft click. I generally avoid opening buckets during fermentation, but just to make sure, I briefly opened the bucket and could see the yeast was very busy. I used my new "knee to the bucket" method to ensure a tight seal once I closed it up, and the airlock immediately began clicking away.

36
All Grain Brewing / Re: Low Oxygen Conclusions?
« on: December 24, 2016, 10:28:23 AM »
We crafted the website to serve as the comprehensive, digestible guide. There are individual posts going over many of the process points.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Re the website -- lots of good info! Take the following with a huge grain of salt--just one brewer's take. Consider moving the section that has a "simple list of areas of improvement in equipment and process" toward the top of the main page, preceded by a one- or two-sentence explanation of dissolved oxygen, culled from the paragraphs on DO:

This website offers techniques for minimizing dissolved oxygen (DO) in the homebrew process. Controlling DO preserves the fresh malt flavors inherent in the grains by guarding them against oxidation.

Save Winston Churchill and the paragraph that follows for elsewhere on the website, maybe a "mission statement" page. The list of questions is good, but it makes more sense if it follows what you're arguing (controlling DO is good) and the basic outline of your method (here's how to do it).

But it's just my 2 cents (or 2 grains)... I have been working on a huge writing project for an eternity, with two advisors who are keen-eyed journal editors... I cannot read anything without wanting to take out my red pen.

37
All Grain Brewing / Re: Low Oxygen Conclusions?
« on: December 24, 2016, 10:16:51 AM »
Very helpful and clear synopsis of one brewer's approach to LODO. I already do some of these steps, including draining into the tun through the ball valve and doing a no-sparge mash. If SMB is what I think it is, I use that as well.

Water: "bring to a boil and hold for 5 minutes" -- I usually get my water ready to boil the night before, so this step would be simple enough. Can this step be done a few hours earlier than the brew, or would oxygen sneak back in during the dead of night?

Mash: "drain wort into kettle" -- sometimes I mash the night before, drain into the brew kettle, put the lid on and then turn the BK on as soon as I wake up. Would holding the wort overnight reintroduce oxygen?

SMB -- sodium metabisulfite -- to be clear, this is what's in Campden tablets, right?

38
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: My Brew Years Resolution
« on: December 22, 2016, 07:13:44 AM »
Years ago, I had a goal for 2017 to build a pump-driven, all-electric, mobile brew stand. But it's possible we'll be moving (in the same town, most likely) and after changing homes twice since I started brewing in 2009, I know that what I need for effective brewing changes with every home.

My goals are to brew more frequently (I should be able to do that by March) and start playing with water. Every time I say I'm going to do that (get RO water, use various salts, etc.) I chicken out and go for filtered water from our fridge dispenser with a piece of Campden tablet. I don't know why I have such a mental block. Yes, it takes a while to get enough water through that dispenser, though I brew 3-gallon batches, and it's faster than driving to the store for spring water.

I was going to get in a brew last Sunday but we didn't get to the LHBS in the city we were in on Saturday, which scotched that plan. But I'm off for 12 days starting tomorrow and at least one of them will be a brew day.

39
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Lallemand London ESB Premium Yeast
« on: December 17, 2016, 10:09:32 AM »
I'm going to try this yeast tomorrow, assuming the LHBS carries it and the other stuff I want. I adapted the following recipe from Brewing Classic Styles. ESB is the first style I ever brewed, from an extract kit I bought in Jan 2009.

I'm mulling over buying RO water and then treating it. Regardless, it will be beer. There is one process change: fermenting in a bucket with a spigot, so I can drain directly into a purged keg.

Interregnum ESB (2.5 gallons)

6 lbs Golden Promise
4 oz Crystal 15L
2 oz Crystal 120L
.75 oz Kent Goldings 5% AA 60 min
1.25 oz Kent Goldings 5% AA whirlpool
1/2 tab whirfloc
1 packet Lallemand London Premium ESB Yeast
Campden tablet in bottled spring water

Mash 152 (no sparge)
Ferment 68
Carbonate 1.75 vol
Maybe toss .5 oz hops in the keg in a small weighted bag
I would suggest mashing a little cooler, 148 maybe.  I did an ESB with that yeast and mashed 152-154.  It fermented out a bit sweet for my taste.  This yeast doesn't ferment maltriose.

That's very helpful, thanks!

40
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Lallemand London ESB Premium Yeast
« on: December 17, 2016, 10:02:53 AM »
I don't know if bottled water has chloramine in it, but I also don't know how to test for it, particularly if I'm buying bottled water,


I'm pretty sure that you can smell it. I'm also pretty sure that bottled water doesn't have any.

Martin writes, "Complete chlorine and chloramine removal is required since chlorophenols can be tasted at very low levels (10 ppb)" ( https://sites.google.com/site/brunwater/water-knowledge ). I'm not sure my nose could pick up a chloramine odor at that level. You're probably right about bottled water (I looked at Nestle's water report, and it was ND for chloramine), but if it doesn't harm the brewing process, I'll keep doing it. It wouldn't surprise me to learn that sometimes, "spring" water is tap water.

41
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Lallemand London ESB Premium Yeast
« on: December 17, 2016, 08:33:35 AM »
Is the campden tablet really needed for bottled water?  I can't imagine that there is any chlorine in it (ok, I can imagine it).

I don't know if bottled water has chloramine in it, but I also don't know how to test for it, particularly if I'm buying bottled water, and by all reports campden reliably removes it. Interestingly I was reading up on LODO this morning, and adding sodium metabisulfite supposedly scavenges oxygen. I use half a tablet, crushed, in the strike water, and it's one of those "if it doesn't hurt anything I'll keep doing it" parts of my process, like skimming hot break.

I just Googled "campden tablets shelf life" -- if I think it's that important I should replace them, as I bought this bottle in 2010. :-)

42
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Lallemand London ESB Premium Yeast
« on: December 17, 2016, 08:11:04 AM »
I'm going to try this yeast tomorrow, assuming the LHBS carries it and the other stuff I want. I adapted the following recipe from Brewing Classic Styles. ESB is the first style I ever brewed, from an extract kit I bought in Jan 2009.

I'm mulling over buying RO water and then treating it. Regardless, it will be beer. There is one process change: fermenting in a bucket with a spigot, so I can drain directly into a purged keg.

Interregnum ESB (2.5 gallons)

6 lbs Golden Promise
4 oz Crystal 15L
2 oz Crystal 120L
.75 oz Kent Goldings 5% AA 60 min
1.25 oz Kent Goldings 5% AA whirlpool
1/2 tab whirfloc
1 packet Lallemand London Premium ESB Yeast
Campden tablet in bottled spring water

Mash 152 (no sparge)
Ferment 68
Carbonate 1.75 vol
Maybe toss .5 oz hops in the keg in a small weighted bag

43
All Grain Brewing / Re: steel cut oats in oatmeal stout
« on: December 12, 2016, 07:58:00 AM »
I just checked the ingredients of my Barbara Bush Old Fashioned Oatmeal

Yeah, the likeness is striking (and unfortunate).

Quaker has a page describing what's in their oats and how they are processed. FWIW I've never cooked oats for a brew though I usually toast them lightly if it's for a stout. The only oats I know to have sugar in them are the flavored instant oats that come in packets.

http://www.quakeroats.com/about-quaker-oats/content/quaker-faq.aspx

As for Barbara B, that meme comparing her to the Quaker Oats image is based on a comment by a political pundit in response to a political opinion the former FLOTUS shared earlier this year. Responding to a woman sharing her opinion by criticizing her appearance is up there with a second grader responding to an opinion by calling someone a poopyhead. If I am going strong at 91 I won't care if I look like Mrs. Butterworth. You can see other, more flattering photos of BB by going to her Wikipedia page:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barbara_Bush

44
All Grain Brewing / Re: Skimming hot break questions
« on: December 11, 2016, 11:16:05 AM »
I skim because it's a cooking habit I acquired prior to homebrewing, from decades of making chicken stock. Stand over the stock pot... peer into it... skim gunk into a glass mug, look at it critically... it's part of the process for me, and process is why I brew in the first place. Skimming also has the benefit that I'm watching the boil, so I don't have boilovers -- particularly important because I tend to push the limits on what I can fit into my brew kettle.

While I have no idea if skimming makes the beer any better, I would only stop skimming if I knew it was bad for the end product.

45
Ingredients / Re: CaraPils alternatives (two?)
« on: December 11, 2016, 08:46:13 AM »
Heh heh.......

http://brulosophy.com/2016/11/28/dextrine-malt-pt-1-the-impact-of-carapils-on-various-beer-characteristics-exbeeriment-results/

Too funny! I can't remember what happened with my planned experiment, but I think it fell to the conclusion that I'd rather be brewing all-grain.

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