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Messages - nateo

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All Grain Brewing / Re: Problems with Single Decoction mash
« on: March 31, 2012, 04:30:43 PM »
FWIW Denny spearheaded a big decoction showdown a while ago. IIRC, when using well-modified malts, most people couldn't tell the difference between the decocted and infused beers. Beer scientists in Germany arrived at the same conclusions years ago, which is why Germans use multi-step infusions now, except for a few old-school brewers. 

The biggest problem that I saw with Denny's experiment was that it wasn't comparing the most appropriate use of decoction (undermodified malts) with an appropriate alternative to decoction (like adding some amount of melanoidin malt).

My wheat malt is poorly modified, so I'll usually do decoctions when using it.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Best practice for WY3711?
« on: March 31, 2012, 02:13:50 PM »
I think that the small amounts you're talking about won't make a world of difference.  Try to stay close to those parameters, but experiment and see what works for you.

I'm sure you're right. I'm usually pretty relaxed on temp, and I can make beer that I like, I'm just trying to take my quality to the next level.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Best practice for WY3711?
« on: March 31, 2012, 01:09:50 PM »
I like to start it about 60 for a few days, then let it rise. 

I have a chest freezer for my fermentors. I usually set it at 58* to target 60* in the fermentor, or should I set the freezer a little higher? Should I take it out of the freezer after a few days, or just raise the temp on the controller?

Yeast and Fermentation / Best practice for WY3711?
« on: March 31, 2012, 12:52:24 PM »
I've used this yeast a few times, but I wanted to get some feedback on how people like to use this. It's been a year or more since I've used it and I can't find my notes.

I'm planning a 1.080-ish Saison. Any advice on pitching rate and ferm temperature? Should I use additional nutrients?

Ingredients / Re: Is Flaked Barley Worthwhile when Using Oatmeal?
« on: March 31, 2012, 12:34:29 PM »
I wouldn't worry about it.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Yeast advice for a Belgian Blond (18A)
« on: March 31, 2012, 09:56:14 AM »
1762 is the Rochefort yeast.  Rochefort makes dark strongs, so why would it be crazy?

I don't really trust my palate, and I worry about giving bad advice. It's just nice to see other people arrive at the same conclusion.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Yeast advice for a Belgian Blond (18A)
« on: March 31, 2012, 05:54:55 AM »
Sean posted this link on another thread:

I'm glad to see I'm not crazy to enjoy 1762 in my dark strongs. I always felt that 3787 gave a pretty strong clove character, though, so maybe I am crazy.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Yeast advice for a Belgian Blond (18A)
« on: March 30, 2012, 06:27:39 PM »
My favorite Belgian yeast is 3787, hands down. I actually prefer it in lower-gravity Belgians, and go with 1762 for bigger Belgians. I've made just about every Belgian style with every Belgian yeast, and those are those are the two I keep coming back to. But I've never met a Belgian yeast I didn't like. Any of them will be great.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Should I sour a 1.102 gravity beer?
« on: March 30, 2012, 06:23:23 PM »
Do it! You could always split it in half and sour only one portion, then compare the two.

We put out whatever stuff we have that needs to go but can't go in the normal trash pickup up on the curb and then we sit outside and watch all the beat up cars and rusty trucks with trailers troll through the neighborhood and pick through the stuff. 

That sounds like every trash day in downtown Denver.

People like to dump their appliances, tires, and mattresses on my land. One time someone dumped a fridge here, and it still worked! I was pretty excited about that. It's holding my yeast and hops now, and bottles I'm cold conditioning.

Equipment and Software / Re: How to use a pH meter
« on: March 30, 2012, 07:48:34 AM »
Unless you contaminated the portion that you removed and returned, e.g. with rinse water from rinsing the pH probe off.

That's what I'm afraid happened. My tap water is really alkaline, so maybe if half a ml of rinse water contaminated it each time I calibrated it, after a long time that could skew the samples. When my new buffers show up I'll compare the results.

Equipment and Software / Re: How to use a pH meter
« on: March 29, 2012, 12:28:35 PM »
I've been getting some odd readings on my Hanna HI 98107 (the 2-point calibration one). I read the label on my buffer solutions, and it said not to pour the used solution back into the bottle. D'oh! I've been doing that for the past year or so.

I've ordered some new buffers, but I wonder which direction the old solution would push the pH, up or down? 

Probably not a good choice for oak, since the outside of those barrels saw cool slightly humid conditions for quite some time.

One of the less crazy old-timers at HomeBrewTalk swears by them, so I thought I'd try them. I'll probably toast them in the oven for a few hours to take care of any hitchhikers before I use them again. Or maybe I'll just use them for smoking meat, like they're made for.

The oak chips I'm using are the Jack Daniels barrels shredded up for smoking chips, like this:

I don't usually sanitize my oak chips, but I did briefly (60-90 sec) boil these chips before adding them. So I'm guessing whatever it was could live inside the oak itself, and not just on the surface.

I tasted it when I transferred, and it tasted pretty good. I think I'll ride it out for now, and try sulfite if it's getting too nasty for me. I was planning on carbing with wine yeast anyway, so I'll get a sulfur-tolerant one just to be safe.

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