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Messages - erockrph

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Commercial Beer Reviews / Re: Orval
« on: August 24, 2015, 11:35:51 AM »
Orval is a special beer. There are few others that I would hold in the same regard, and the majority of them are vintage or limited-release. There aren't many beers like Orval that I could just grab at one of several local package stores on any given evening.

Beer Recipes / Re: Tweaking a Belgian Pale / Specialty Ale
« on: August 24, 2015, 11:09:32 AM »
What are you shooting for? Are you looking for an American Pale Ale with Belgian yeast esters, or a Belgian Pale Ale with American hop character? Your second grain bill will probably be more APA-like, while your first is probably closer to a Belgian Pale Ale.

If you're going for a BPA, then I'd probably swap out 10-20% of the Pale Ale malt for simple sugar of some sort to help dry things out. Plain table sugar works fine, but I'm also a fan of D-45 Candi Syrup in this style as well.

BTW, I think people are FAR too hung up on lag tine!
Agreed! I couldn't tell you what the lag time is on my beers. I just pitch and walk away for a few days/weeks. I've never once said "that tastes like it had a long lag time".

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Calc help
« on: August 24, 2015, 09:58:57 AM »
There's a special place (Heaven or Hell?) for those blessed with math and metric conversion skills!
All you need is Google:

Beer Recipes / Re: Czech Dark Lager
« on: August 20, 2015, 11:50:22 AM »
This beer turned out pretty nice, a little lighter colored than I wanted but it was very smooth and balanced. It think it could of used a little more malty back bone and a bit more caramunich. Since I have a sack of Red X to play with I'm going to give this a try.

Red X 71%
Pils 18%
Caramunich 9%
Debittered Carafa III 2%

I thought about bumping up the caramunich but the Red X is supposily a blend of Munich, Melanoiden and some kind of Cara malt so maybe I don't need as much? This malt bill should come in around 20 SRM, I want it dark with a reddish hue.
From what I understand, Red X is simply a specially kilned base malt that gives a red color. Best Malz says that the reddest beer results from using Red X as 100% of the grist at 1.050 OG. In my experience, the flavor is in the ballpark of Light Munich malt.

I think your recipe looks like it should get you close to what you're looking for.

Equipment and Software / Re: false bottom, bazooka, BIAB?
« on: August 20, 2015, 08:21:33 AM »
The only one I would probably eliminate is BIAB since the whole idea with that is to only use a single vessel.
I BIAB in a cooler mashtun to help hold my mash temps better. It works great for that.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: calcium chloride and IPA's
« on: August 20, 2015, 05:55:32 AM »

What effect does the ratio of the two have?

In and of itself, none. 200 ppm sulfate and 20 ppm chloride won't taste the same as 20 ppm and 2 ppm.

I understand that much. I get that any ratio is contingent on the values used. I guess my question is, after establishing your values for sulfate and chloride, does it really matter what the ratio of the two is?

I'm used to seeing it listed in the brewing water sheets, and I am sure that for different beers it varies, but is it an important variable to tweak or just a byproduct?

As good as "How to Brew" is, much of Palmer's info on water in that book is outdated, yet many still consider it gospel. That's where I think the pervasive use of the Cl:SO4 ratio in homebrewing comes from. Water treatment is much more complex than what he focuses on in that book.

Sulfate enhances a dry finish, which lends itself well to styles such as West Coast IPA that shoot for a dry hoppiness. Chloride is a flavor enhancer that tends to highlight malt, in particular giving it a bit of a fuller/richer quality. The two ions work independantly, and do not counter or "neutralize" each other, which is something that a ratio implies. All the ratio may be helpful in is showing whether the particular balance of ions in that beer may be pushing a dry finish more than malty fullness, or vice versa. But even then, that's of minimal use because many styles can use a bit of each.

It's better to throw away the ratio altogether and focus on the two ions individually. You will likely settle on a particular ratio naturally, but that's mainly just a relic of looking at the two ions individually.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Calc help
« on: August 20, 2015, 05:44:11 AM »
Sucrose contributes 46.2 point-gal/lb, so you need 5*8/46.2 = 0.87 lb of it, so 0.98 lb of the syrup.
Correct, assuming those ounces on the syrup are weight. If it's fl oz, then you want 15.76 oz. So either roughly a pint or a pound, depending on whether it's being sold by volume or weight.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Lagering/Filtration
« on: August 19, 2015, 08:51:44 PM »
I just wrapped up the D-rest on my first lager using WY2278. It is already almost brilliantly clear in under 3 weeks from brewday, and before any cold conditioning. There are a lot of ale strains that aren't as fast as this. Needless to say, if you want to have a lager ready fast it is certainly possible depending on your process and yeast choice.

Commercial Beer Reviews / Re: Paulaner Original Munich (Helles)
« on: August 19, 2015, 12:49:17 PM »
Im homing in on it. Not there yet. This winter when I continue my journey, it will be 3 parts Best pils to one part Best Vienna.  Borderline low calcium from CaCl. Aiming to the low end of hopiness, 10gm magnum at 60. Fermented with Wyeast Munich. About 4.5% abv. Adjusted in the bottling bucket to 4.3 pH.
Sounds like a tasty journey :)

What yeast strain are you using, Jim?

Beer Recipes / Re: new/trendy hop varieties in and I.S.A.
« on: August 19, 2015, 12:44:10 PM »
To my palate, Citra is still the king of tropical fruit, with Galaxy probably 2nd place. If you want to push the tropical fruit hard, I'd go 1 part each Citra and Galaxy, and 0.5 parts of Mosaic and Equinox. You could also use a touch of Amarillo to bring in some orange/stonefruit to fill out the fruit, or hit it with Simcoe to add back some dank/pine as a counterpoint.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: keeping conan
« on: August 18, 2015, 08:55:59 PM »
You can also culture 3864 from the bottle.

But that doesn't help Homo.
Actually, it does. You can just as easily culture from your own bottle conditioned homebrew. I've done that in the past. But keeping a few jars of slurry in the fridge leaves a wider margin of error.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: orange zest and bittering
« on: August 18, 2015, 11:15:08 AM »
So use ascorbic acid addition to a Lacto starter made from a handful of malt in the wort?  To lower the O2 and to inhibit aerobic bacteria strains?

It's worth an experiment at the very least. That's probably best suited if you have good, but not great, means of reducing O2 pickup (such as the Saran Wrap on the wort trick).

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: keeping conan
« on: August 18, 2015, 10:22:58 AM »
If you really like it and want to use it frequently, then make sure you brew with it every few months and keep the culture fresh. That's your best guarantee that you will be able to use it whenever you need.

If you just want to have it in case you want to brew with it sometime in the future, then storing under beer in the fridge will buy you anywhere from 6-24 months if you're willing to baby it early on with stepped starters. That's what I do with WY3864, which is one of my favorite yeast strains but is only released every couple of years. I like it a lot, but if for some reason I can't get a healthy starter going it's not the end of the world for me. I can use something else like 1762 or 3787 until Wyeast releases it again.

All Grain Brewing / Re: color of Susan
« on: August 18, 2015, 10:12:38 AM »
Haze, lighting, and a touch of aromatic malt should do it.

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