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Messages - tom

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1036
Ingredients / Re: Vanilla Bean
« on: December 09, 2009, 03:59:07 PM »
The amount of vanilla has more to do with subjective tastes than the OG of the beer.  What I do is split the bean lengthwise and scrape out all the "gunk" in the middle.  Chop the pod into 2-3 in. long pieces and put the pod and "gunk" into secondary and rack the beer on top.  I've tried soaking in vodka and didn't care for the taste, nor did I find it necessary in terms of sanitation.
Denny, why do you scrape it out?

1037
Have you done a parti-gyle before? I love them for big beers. I just use the first runnings for the big beer and the second runnings for the other. My main interest is in the big beer, so the 2nd beer is just gravy.

If you haven't done a parti-gyle before I would simplify it as much as possible.

If you batch sparge, start checking the gravity of the first runnings and second runnings vs the mash ratio for future use in parti-gyles. Thicker mashes will give you higher o.g., but lower efficiency. For example, mashing at 1.25 qt will get you first runnings wort gravity in the 1.090's, but you will only get 0.75 qt/lb because the grain absorbs ~ 0.5 qt/lb. There was a good chart in one of this summer's zymurgies which had the gravity of the first runnings vs mash ratio (and % efficiency). You can plug them into a homebrew computer program to get your total amount of grain necessary.

For the second batch I just sparge with the same volume as the first runnings and I usually get about half the gravity of the first. If you have a 2nd boil kettle you can have your 2nd beer boiling within 15 minutes of the big beer.


1038
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Kettle Caramelization for a Wee Heavy
« on: December 08, 2009, 04:29:39 PM »
But when you are boiling only a gallon, the water will evaporate and then the caramelization begins at about 320F (not at 212F). Heck I can't even get my regular wort to boil at 212 (at a mile high it boils around 203F  ;) ).

As soon as you go above 212F (at sea level) the water is gone  ;)
Well, not exactly. When solutes are dissolved in water, the boiling temperature will increase. But, I looked it up and I was surprised that a 1.100 solution will only increase the boiling temperature by 0.4C.

1039
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Kettle Caramelization for a Wee Heavy
« on: December 08, 2009, 10:52:06 AM »
My money's on 212°F.  ;D
I'll take that action!

Thanks for posting the temps blues. I researched this long ago when Randy Mosher pointed it out to me. All we see in the boil is darkening which can lead to caramel flavors, but it is not caramelization, it is maillard reactions until the water is gone.
But when you are boiling only a gallon, the water will evaporate and then the caramelization begins at about 320F (not at 212F). Heck I can't even get my regular wort to boil at 212 (at a mile high it boils around 203F  ;) ).

1040
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Kettle Caramelization for a Wee Heavy
« on: December 07, 2009, 07:19:14 PM »
Caramelization happens within a temperature range. Has anybody checked their temperatures when boiling down the first runnings?

1041
Equipment and Software / Re: Keg question...
« on: December 05, 2009, 06:14:26 PM »
Anything from a Dremel, angle grinder, reciprocating saw, plasma cutter, etc., whatever you have.
Most cut a 12" hole in the top. I preferred 10" because that was the size of my lids.

1042
Maybe some cheap vodka would work?

1043
All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash Ratio
« on: December 01, 2009, 02:35:32 PM »
There is minimal effect on the mash enzymes and resultant wort fermentability. Some say that a thicker mash will produce less fermentable wort, and thinner mashes more fermentable. But compared to temperature, mash pH, etc., its effects are pretty minimal.
RDWHAHB

1044
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Fining carbonated beer
« on: December 01, 2009, 11:01:24 AM »
All concerns. Purging the headspace with CO2 afterwards should prevent oxidation and carbonation loss. Foaming can definitely haappen, just be quick.

Or just use a stoneware mug!

1045
Equipment and Software / Re: My BK pickup is finally done
« on: November 30, 2009, 10:23:47 AM »
I like to keep my Bazooka screen along the side. That way I can whirlpool all the hops and trub into the center which helps keep the screen from clogging. Just brewed 10 gallons of double IPA without a problem.

1046
All Grain Brewing / Re: Alpha Amylase
« on: November 28, 2009, 10:54:07 AM »
Have you tried different malts?

1047
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Colorado Malting company
« on: November 28, 2009, 10:46:03 AM »
I used in once in our club's Iron Brewer. We made a sort of pale ale with it and it was fine. Nice clear, yellow colored beer.

1048
Equipment and Software / Re: False bottom hole size
« on: November 27, 2009, 06:32:32 PM »
0.125" = 4/32"
What is the spacing?

1049
All Grain Brewing / Re: Lower ABV, Same Taste - Possible?
« on: November 27, 2009, 10:04:44 AM »
So the gravity went up?

1050
Cool! Is the rubbing alcohol safe to drink?

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