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Messages - erockrph

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16
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Liquid Yeast > Dry Yeast?
« on: June 23, 2015, 05:23:38 PM »
I'm really excited about this, especially the K97. I'd definitely work up a house altbier recipe if I could keep a couple of packs of German ale yeast in the fridge at all times.

US-05 (as well as 1056 and 001) works just about as well for an alt as anything else.
That may be true, but the fermentation character of 1007 is something that I really enjoy in my alts. I've heard that K97 is the dry equivalent.

17
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Souring old home brew
« on: June 23, 2015, 05:11:42 PM »
it will likely get badly oxidized in the process of decanting. Cooking is a good use of old homebrew though.
There are ways to minimize oxidation to the point where this wouldn't necessarily be doomed to failure right off the bat. Brettanomyces is pretty good at scavenging O2, or at least converting oxidation byproducts into tastier compounds. I'd get a starter of Brett going in the final fermentation vessel, and carefully pour the bottles into the starter while it is still showing signs of activity. I can't guarantee that it will be good, but if you have the fermenter space available then no harm in trying it out.

You might have trouble getting any sourness out of a finished beer. The hops and alcohol will inhibit lactobacillus from being very productive. Pediococcus will work on complex carbohydrates, but it's slow. A Brett-aged beer seems like the best bet, but if you have patience you might be able to get some acidity from a Pedio-Brett blend.

And I agree completely that cooking is an excellent use for old homebrew, especially maltier beers.

18
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Woo hoo!
« on: June 23, 2015, 09:21:44 AM »
Congrats! Noticed your club is BN Army. We need a club that is AHA Forum.

Hey, I'd join that.
+2 - I've had the same thought as well. I generally consider this forum to be my "homebrew club" in a loose way. Certainly more so than the BN.

19
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Liquid Yeast > Dry Yeast?
« on: June 23, 2015, 09:17:48 AM »
I use US-05 as my house yeast for most ales, and W34/70 for all my lagers, but I still haven't found a good dry for hefe, wit, Belgian etc.  I've tried WB-06 for hefe and it's just lacking, and T-58 isn't so good either.

T58 works great for my wit but maybe it is just my palate. It's the only style that seems to work for that yeast in my opinion.

To the op, I use dry yeast for 90% of my brews but mainly because I do a lot of American styles or lagers. Fermentis was supposed to announce two yeast strains available in 11.5 g at nhc which I am excited about. K97 German ale and s189 lager.
I'm really excited about this, especially the K97. I'd definitely work up a house altbier recipe if I could keep a couple of packs of German ale yeast in the fridge at all times.

20
Kegging and Bottling / Re: Temperature for priming sugar solution?
« on: June 23, 2015, 08:55:41 AM »
I don't let it cool at all.  There's only a cup or so of hot liquid and when you siphon the beer in it cools down immediately.
+1 - I do the same thing. Plus, the hotter it is the better it will mix. I usually start my siphon, then add the priming solution once there's about an inch or so of beer in the bottling bucket. It cools almost instantly, and the swirling motion of the beer mixes it in pretty well. I still give it a gentle swirl with a sanitized spoon at the end just to be sure that it mixes in evenly.

21
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Do Paradox sour beers have viable dregs?
« on: June 23, 2015, 08:15:20 AM »
Yeah, I guess that is what I am relegated to do.  If I choose that route, I will let you know the results (if any).
Make sure to let Mike Tonsmeire know as well so he can update the list on his website

22
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: How much food do Brett and pedio need?
« on: June 23, 2015, 06:41:11 AM »
I'm a little late to the conversation, but I think a lot of sour beer brewers have come around on the thought that you need to leave food for Brett to produce it's typical flavor profile. If the appropriate flavor precursors are available, Brett will happily metabolize these without needing a significant carbohydrate source.

I heard a recent interview with Allagash where the brewers stated that they mash low to try to get their primary fermentation to finish as dry as possible when they're planning on adding Brett to the secondary. This lets them bottle a batch much sooner since they don't need to wait as long for the Brett to get close to terminal gravity. Their Brett beers are fantastic, so they must be doing something right.

This is not what Russian River recommends. They say the opposite (for Supplication). And I guess they also must be doing something right.  :)
I can't get RR up my way. Send me a bottle and I'll see if I agree with you  ;D

I'm not saying that you shouldn't leave complex carbohydrates behind for Brett, just that you don't need to.

...Brett will happily metabolize these without needing a significant carbohydrate source...

This is the answer to the thread subject (at least for Brett).

Brett doesn't need a carbohydrate (sugar, dextrin) source to contribute flavor.

Brett needs carbs and oxygen for growth, so if you pitch a small amount in secondary it may take longer to get to the desired flavor profile. Obviously other factors play into the rate of flavor contribution, i.e. temperature, competing organisms, pH, etc. etc.

Pedio does need a carb source to produce lactic acid, but most strains can break down complex starches leftover by sacch fermentation (and even some left by Brett).

Adding 'food' (sugar, dextrin) to secondary will really just result in more alcohol from fermentation by brett.

Good points. This is why I don't like to pitch straight from dregs or a WL vial without making a starter. I'd rather pitch a bigger cell count of healthy cells. There's some old thinking out there that Brett is like the Mad Max of yeast, and you should subject it to harsh conditions to get it to thrive (i.e., low cell counts). In reality, it's like any other yeast - treat it well and it will treat your beer well.

23
Ingredients / Re: Ingredient Substitute Question
« on: June 22, 2015, 09:24:27 PM »
Medium crystal is usually English medium crystal which tends to be 50-60L more akin to domestic crystal 60.

I've always seen medium crystal as ~45L
If it's UK crystal, Simpsons is 50-60L and Fawcett is a bit darker than that (60-70L IIRC)

24
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Do Paradox sour beers have viable dregs?
« on: June 22, 2015, 08:30:39 PM »
Try growing up a small starter. If there's anything there it should grow. It will certainly help the health of any culture that's in there, anyways.

25
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Yeast propagation at White Labs
« on: June 22, 2015, 08:28:46 PM »
I have never used a stir plate, so I cannot comment on their effectiveness or detriment, but I can say that they are absolutely not necessary. I have always followed the "shake it whenever you walk by it" method of aerating starters, and it has always worked fine. I did notice a big improvement when I started using the "Shaken, not stirred" method of starter aeration. My starters have taken off more rapidly, smell better (I take this as a subjective sign of yeast health), and have noticeably shorter lag times when pitched.

I'm not saying that everyone needs to toss their stir plate, but it is by no means a required piece of equipment. Your money is much better spent on a temp controller, a new keg, a sack of grain, etc. - unless you're a gadget addict and just want one for the fun of it.

26
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: How much food do Brett and pedio need?
« on: June 22, 2015, 08:14:59 PM »
I'm a little late to the conversation, but I think a lot of sour beer brewers have come around on the thought that you need to leave food for Brett to produce it's typical flavor profile. If the appropriate flavor precursors are available, Brett will happily metabolize these without needing a significant carbohydrate source.

I heard a recent interview with Allagash where the brewers stated that they mash low to try to get their primary fermentation to finish as dry as possible when they're planning on adding Brett to the secondary. This lets them bottle a batch much sooner since they don't need to wait as long for the Brett to get close to terminal gravity. Their Brett beers are fantastic, so they must be doing something right.

27
If you're bottle-carbonating this won't work, but I sorbate/sulfite my cider, then backsweeten with fresh juice. I add sugar or apple juice concentrate to get the initial ferment to dry out in the 8-9% abv range, then add back about 50% of the volume in juice (preferably the same cider I used for my initial ferment). I keg and carbonate at that point, but you could bottle it as a still cider if you wanted. The end result is a cider in the 5.5-6% range in the vein of something like Angry Orchard or Woodchuck.

28
Ingredients / Re: Please help me understand my water additions
« on: June 12, 2015, 05:16:25 PM »
Thanks for the replies. I'm going to brew the Blonde tomorrow and  put the additions in the kettle and see what happens. The use of epsom salt was for the IPA to help add sulphates without adding more calcium. My Mg levels are already pretty low so I didn't think it would hurt?
As long as your Mg doesn't get too high, then it's not a problem. Keep in mind that (at least for ales) you want to be in the 50ppm ballpark (minimum) for your calcium.

29
The Pub / Re: If I could bother my friends here for a little help...
« on: June 12, 2015, 11:20:49 AM »
If you win, could you start shipping your beer to the Northeast?  ;D

30
Ingredients / Re: Mashing in dark grains??
« on: June 12, 2015, 11:17:51 AM »
Thats one way to limit harsh astringency that can be added by the darker malts, but is not always necessary as you have seen in previous batches. If you are treating your water with water software, when you hit the correct mash pH, you will also avoid those harsh flavors. There will be a lot of responses here and most will tell you to experiment. I made great dark beers for a year before I started treating my water, and never separated the dark grains. Its really a combination of things that lead to the astringency, kind of a perfect storm of things going wrong. Separating the dark grains will eliminate one aspect of that perfect storm, making it less likely
+1 - Personally, I include them in my mash from the start and target a mash pH of 5.5-5.6 for roasty beers, and 5.4 for brown ales. I have tried adding them at the end of the mash as well as cold-steeping them. In the end, I didn't see an advantage that warranted the extra step.

Whatever you decide on with your procedure, stick with it and make your recipe adjustments from there.

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