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Messages - erockrph

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All Grain Brewing / Re: Saison attempt
« on: Today at 12:41:35 PM »

Stalled even with the heat?  What was you OG?  I've been thinking about coming back to 3724, but I just can't put up with the stall.

I haven't tried it for this reason plus, I just really like 3711
+1 - I love 3711. It's definitely quite a bit different from Dupont, but I love the flavor profile I get from it.

Beer Recipes / Re: Sprucey rye saison
« on: June 01, 2015, 12:35:09 PM »
You're absolutely right that the type (and maybe even brand) of molasses impacts the flavor.

I prefer to use Barbados molasses, as it has a milder flavor. Lately though I've been using organic black strap.

Black strap has the strongest flavor.

Years ago, I made a oatmeal-molasses stout and used a LOT of molasses.  It was delicious.

It all depends on what you are looking for in the final beer.
I use 8 oz. of "Original unsulphured" (not blackstrap) in a 3-gallon batch of old ale and it gives a nice molasses flavor without being overpowering. As you said, type of molasses and desired effect play a big role.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Sulphurous / Egg Smell In Starter
« on: June 01, 2015, 12:23:40 PM »
Isn't it also true that sulfur is generated by the yeast in the growth phase? I have never worried about sulfur aromas from a yeast starter. Ever.

While there are S. cerevisiae strains that throw sulfur, S. cerevisiae yeast strains usually only throw sulfur when stressed.  A particular Burton ale strain throws sulfur, but that's because it is not really an ale strain.   It's a lager strain masquerading as an ale strain.
Mark, do you know of any biology behind why weisse/wit strains tend to pump out a lot of sulfur compared to other S. cerevisiae strains? To me, they're worse than many lager strains with the H2S production.

The Pub / Re: What's the Weather Like Where You Are?
« on: May 31, 2015, 07:40:34 PM »
Won't lie, I was never so happy as the day my kids decided to stop playing soccer  ;D  I'd have supported them all the way if it was their thing, but it wasn't. I love how, with kids soccer mostly played in the spring and fall, that damn near every game is required to be played on chilly, rainy mornings @ 8am. I was sick every spring and fall with headcolds. I sympathize !
My daughter loves it and is a great player but its all the travel being on a travel team, she's dedicated. Today's game is 3 hours driving for 90 minutes of playing, I need a beer:)
Man, I'm spoiled that it's under a mile to both the teeball and soccer fields. Things will probably change this fall for flag football. But, the weather has been all over the place this year. It's either been cold and windy, or hot and stale with the sun beating down on you. I would kill for a run of days with low-70's and a light breeze.

I'm loving the rain today up here. It should help the berries fill out a bit. I might actually plant my beans and peanuts tomorrow not that the soil has some moisture.

After my first batch, in every stage of brewing (wort, ferment, bottle), I have cleaned all equipment with PBW and rinsed well. Forgive me if this sounds like an idiotic question but.... I gotta ask!

Do I clean the equipment again just before use, somewhat of a secondary cleaning or was the initial cleaning that I did after brew day/bottle day sufficient?
One cleaning is sufficient. Store everything covered and/or upside down so no dust can get in them. You do need to sanitize anything that touches the wort/beer after the boil. I'd do that right before use. I prefer to keep Star-San in a spray bottle for that purpose.

Great forum handle, by the way. The Stand is one of my favorite King novels, and the miniseries from about 15 years ago was really good, too.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Does anyone filter after a BIAB mash?
« on: May 31, 2015, 02:28:45 PM »
The only time I had any astringency issues was one time when I tore a small hole in my bag and several whole husks made it through to the boil. Shortly after that I got a high quality custom bag from and I haven't had any issues since then.

I'm using 3711 so I don't even know if I'd be able to tell the difference in attenuation. That yeast finishes in the mid single digits every time. I also did a small hopstand with Nelson and Motueka, so that will be interesting to see how it goes with the wine must.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: My first big beer. Will it carb?
« on: May 30, 2015, 07:10:51 PM »
Wyeast 2124 is W-34/70.  W-34/70 is a robust and forgiving tetraploid (four sets of chromosomes) lager yeast strain, which is why it is the most popular yeast strain in the world.  I would take Eric's advice and pitch 1/4th of a packet of rehydrated dry W-34/70 with your priming sugar.   The alcohol heat should mellow in time.
I happen to have a packet of W-34/70 on hand.  Once rehydrated, can I put it in my priming sugar solution?  I bottle carbonate via "pump prime".

Personally I'd be concerned about the osmotic pressure of the priming solution. You could just add dry yeast directly to the bottles before capping.
Agreed. It shouldn't take more than a few grains.

I have a big triple brewday planned for Thursday. I'm planning on making a Saison, a Pyment and a Lambic-style sour - all using Gerwurztraminer must from a wine kit.

I look forward to hearing how the saison/must beer comes out. I'm still planning to use Muscat juice in a saison probably summer/fall ish. Just didn't order it in time to brew when I wanted to this time.
I will definitely post some updates once this is ready. If it works out, then I'll definitely stash away some bottles for the next beer swap.

I will say that the pyment must smelled an tasted incredible going into the fermenter. I was shooting for something in the Auslese/Eiswein realm, and so far it seems like I'm right on target.

Other Fermentables / Island Mist fruit wine kits
« on: May 30, 2015, 11:47:13 AM »
Has anyone ever tried one of these? Label Peelers has them 30% off today, since Winexpert is instituting minimum pricing starting tomorrow. I wasn't thinking of brewing one straight-up, but rather using them as a base for a light, carbonated melomel (in the vein of B Nektar's Zombie Killer/Kill all the Golfers/etc.). I'm just wondering if these are OK, or if they're lousy Boone's Farm ripoffs.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Sulphurous / Egg Smell In Starter
« on: May 30, 2015, 11:14:54 AM »
The OP stated that his starter was throwing H2S.   H2S production with most lager yeast strains is normal; however, it's a sign of stress with most ale yeast strains.

Mark, try using 50ml of 5% w/v (1.020) wort next time you attempt to start the dregs from a bottle of bottle-conditioned beer.   Five percent wort is less likely to stress the remaining viable cells, and it is easier to diffuse O2 into 5% w/v wort than it is 10% w/v (1.040) wort.  Old cells need to be babied.

Good catch. I didn't notice that he was making a starter from dregs.

I've changed up my dreg procedure a bit recently with good results (partly based on some things I picked up from your posts about storing yeast under beer). I save about 4 ounces of beer with the dregs in the bottle to be cultured, then add it to 4 oz of normal strength starter wort in a mason jar for my first step. This gives you a half-strength starter, with some of the protective effects of the finished beer (i.e., alcohol and pH). Plus by saving some of the liquid beer, you will not only culture up the cells that have flocced out, but also ones that have remained in suspension and could potentially be a bit more active.

Step one takes a while to really get rolling, but I have noticed much healthier and more vigorous ferments when I step up the starter to pitching quantities using this procedure.

The Pub / Re: What's the Weather Like Where You Are?
« on: May 30, 2015, 08:11:25 AM »
Wet, wet, wet.
^This^ I wish we could ship this rain to Cali.  We don't need anymore for a while.
I'll take some up here in New England as well. I think we've gotten about 30 minutes of drizzle in all of May. I haven't bothered to direct-sow any veggies in my garden since it's like a dustbowl.

Ingredients / Re: Ideas for these malts?
« on: May 30, 2015, 08:02:04 AM »
You could go all-in with everything on a saison that would probably be pretty nice. You could also do a few smaller batches to test everything out one-by-one. Maybe a Berliner Weisse using the acidulated malts to "sour" it.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Cold crash before fruit addition
« on: May 30, 2015, 07:43:08 AM »
You're not going to completely halt fermentation unless you pasteurize, sterile filter or use sorbate/sulfite. You will slow it down a bit, but any yeast that are there will still slowly eat up any sugars you introduce. You're better off just adding more fruit if you want more flavor. There's nothing wrong with adding a second addition of fruit if the first one doesn't give you as much flavor as you'd like.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: My first big beer. Will it carb?
« on: May 30, 2015, 07:13:31 AM »
Personally, I think it will probably carbonate just fine if you give it enough time. If you want to add some dry yeast at bottling for insurance, then 1/4 packet of something like 34/70 or US-05 should do the trick.

When I bottle condition a lager, I prefer to bottle after my D-rest, then wait for the bottles to carbonate before lagering in the bottle. I figure this way there is plenty of yeast in suspension to carbonate in a normal amount of time, plus any new yeast growth during carbonation will drop out during lagering.

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