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Messages - erockrph

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Commercial Beer Reviews / Mikkeller Spontanbeetroot
« on: October 23, 2015, 02:52:35 AM »
I've had quite a few of Mikkeller's spontaneous fermentation beers in the past year or two. All of them have been at least decent, and the Spontangooseberry is one of the best fruited sours I've ever had. When I saw the beet lambic, I was torn. On the one hand, all of the others have been good so far. On the other hand, this could just be like drinking pickled beets (of which I am not a fan). Curiosity got the better of me, and here I am.

The beer pours a murky orange-red in appearance, with a persistent ring of white foam. It looks strikingly similar to my mother-in-law's borscht. The nose has lactic and citrus tang, with a solid cherry-pie Brett note. I think I'm getting some boiled root vegetable aroma, but it's faint and fleeting.

On the palate, the cherry pie takes the lead, followed by tangy lactic notes. There are some low horsy/barnyard funk notes, and some earthy beet character as well. I get a bit of that boiled root veggies character as well. I think it read more carrot/parsnip than beet, possibly due to the funk/spice/bitter character from the Brett coming along for the ride. That character seems to be at a low enough level where it melds in without sticking out like a sore thumb. But it still seems a bit brothy to me, pushing things over to the savory side a tad. Acidity is quite tart, but not bracingly so. The finish has some lingering low bitterness, with some lactic and sweet vegetable notes.

My verdict? This is about as good as you could possibly do with a beet lambic, but I don't know if that is saying much. It is a solid B- beer. I definitely get the synergy between the beets and Brett. There aren't any acetic notes to speak of, and that is very important here or else the beer would taste like you're drinking ketchup. But that vegetable character just doesn't seem like a good fit to me. It was low enough here not to detract too much from the beer, but I don't feel like it added much, either. Having said that, I think parsnips, or a spicy carrot cultivar would be interesting in a lambic given my experience with this, possibly paired with ginger.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« on: October 23, 2015, 01:01:01 AM »
A very generous and interesting assortment just arrived all the way from RI! Thanks Eric (erockrph) I am chilling them now. Going to give them a day or two to recuperate,  then take my sweet time.

Glad you got them in good shape. Enjoy!

The Pub / Re: Ukulele Mods
« on: October 22, 2015, 08:18:05 PM »
I sing while playing six string (if you call it singing) can't seem to make it happen on bass though. Not coordinated enough. Geddi and Sting amaze me with that skill. I don't even try with the dobro unless I'm just playing accompaniment chops
To this day I contest that Les Claypool is human. No human being can play Tommy the Cat and sing at the same time.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Wyeast 1187 for an APA
« on: October 22, 2015, 06:16:06 PM »
Actually, Wyeast discontinued WY1742 Swedish Porter yeast, which they got from Carnegie Porter, when they discovered that it was the same as their WY1187 Ringwood yeast.  They were selling the same yeast under different numbers at the same time.

I believe that  Sinebrychoff is another baltic porter made with this yeast.  I think brewing baltic porters wih lager yeast is more of a Polish-Russian thing.
Interesting. I just picked up some Sinebrychoff recently. I will have to give it a taste-test with that in mind. Maybe I can convince my palate that there is some diacetyl hidden in there armed with this info  ;)

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Wyeast 1187 for an APA
« on: October 22, 2015, 06:03:44 PM »
I've heard people have some success emailing Michael Dawson. I get White Labs and Wyeast need to balance supply with demand, but it would be sweet if they would sell some unique strains on a futures basis.
I email him every year or so hounding him over when WY3864 is going to be released next. While I can't say that it has made a huge difference, he has mentioned in his replies that the feedback they get is part of what factors into their decisions on which strains to release. It certainly can't hurt to reach out to them.

Extract/Partial Mash Brewing / Re: Aletoberfest from All Grain to Extract
« on: October 22, 2015, 04:17:16 PM »
I could have sworn Munich DME is a real thing. Must be confusing it with wheat DME.
I think it might have been at one point, but I've been looking and haven't found any myself. I use Munich extract in my single-hop test batches and it's a PITA to waste half a can of the LME every time. I would definitely buy a bunch if I could get my hands on some.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Wyeast 1187 for an APA
« on: October 22, 2015, 03:56:52 PM »
Deschutes has been around longer than these cultures have been available to craft brewers.  While I may be wrong, I do not recall hearing that Deschutes was a Peter Austin installation, which means that 1187 is either not Ringwood (which many of us have suspected for a long time), or Deschutes does not use a Ringwood-derived culture.

I'm pretty certain Deschutes does not use Ringwood.  And the first time I used Ringwood (1998 or 99), Wyeast was calling it "Swedish Porter yeast".
Interesting. Carnegie Porter, perhaps? I've heard that some Baltic Porters were brewed as ales rather than lagers, but I don't think I had heard a definite example.

Extract/Partial Mash Brewing / Re: Aletoberfest from All Grain to Extract
« on: October 22, 2015, 03:14:48 PM »
Would I keep it the same weight with the extract? 10lbs of Munich?

I figure I'll give steeping the dark munich a shot. If it doesn't turn out well I could also just BIAB with the recipe when I upgrade some equipment.

BrewBama, it sounded awesome on the show! Glad it turned out well for you.
It's not a 1:1 conversion. I believe it's 1lb grain=0.75lb LME=0.6lb DME, but it's been a while so don't quote me on that. Cans of LME are usually 3.3lb, and you don't really want to use a fraction of one since it doesn't keep too well. So I'd do 6.6lb (2 cans) of Munich LME and 12 ounces of Pilsner DME (there is no Munich DME, unfortunately).

Totally agree!  That is one of my favorite commecial BW's too.  It is somewhat hard to find in my area, but have always enjoyed it when I came across it.  It is a very crisp, clean version of the style which I try to emulate when brewing my own at home.  I even think their lacto can be cultured from the bottle (IIRC).
I'll have to give that a try in my next BW. Thanks for the tip!

Extract/Partial Mash Brewing / Re: Aletoberfest from All Grain to Extract
« on: October 22, 2015, 12:15:50 AM »
Munich extract is generally made from a 50:50 mix of Munich and Pils malt. I would just swap out both the Munich and Vienna for Munich LME.

Dark Munich malt really should be mashed, but you can get away with steeping small amounts without running into too much of an issue. Just be aware that you won't get any conversion or extract from it, only flavor. And too much runs the risk of introducing a starch haze. I've only ever steeped it in a dunkelweizen, so I can't say what the impact that a pound would have on a lager that should be bright and clear.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Distilled Water, salt additions and PH
« on: October 21, 2015, 06:27:23 PM »
With Brunwater in my computer, I don't feel the need to use some shotgun gimmick, either.

While I predict that neither you or I have any desire to resort to a pre-packaged product like this, there are some people that just don't have the time, equipment, or interest to pursue our methods. For that reason, I don't fault this manufacturer for providing this product.
It does make it explicitly clear that this is to be used with distilled water. Even though the inputs and outputs aren't as detailed as what is in Brun'water, there are enough options to make me think they can get you to "close enough" range. And frankly, if I were selling kits this would be a nice "value-added" option to offer and may certainly improve my customers' beer.

All Grain Brewing / Re: What is first wort hopping
« on: October 21, 2015, 02:11:58 PM »
Thanks for the information guys. Does this mean if you only FWH that you would not need to have a boil prior to fermenting?
No, the hops remain in the kettle throughout the boil. You would still do a full boil as normal. The hops still need to be boiled to isomerize the alpha acids and create bitterness.

The Pub / Re: Vent much?
« on: October 21, 2015, 12:48:30 PM »
I have nothing against hunting deer. I love venison. But I have very little respect for trophy hunting. No offence meant to anyone here who has a antlered deer head hanging on your wall, I'm just not super impressed by it. I'm more impressed by your freezer stuffed with edible doe.
At home in RI, deer are a hazard and a nuisance. Harvesting does is a much more effective way of controlling the deer population. And frankly, they tend to be much better quality meat. I don't get to hunt very often down here, and I certainly wouldn't turn down a shot at a trophy buck, but I would never pass up a shot at a doe.

But if I do ever harvest a trophy buck (or moose, if I ever luck out and draw a tag), I intend to mount and display it proudly. Because to me it will likely be a once-in-a-lifetime memory. And frankly, I have yet to get over that feeling when I harvest a fish or animal - that I have taken it's life to feed myself and my family. It's a mixture of pride, awe, sadness and a feeling of being connected with the Earth. That trophy would serve of a constant reminder of that for me. That's why I hunt.

Keith, I know your comment wasn't directed at me, and I understand the sentiment. But not all trophies are for trophy's sake. And there is certainly nothing wrong with a respectful hunter having pride in their trophies. And I certainly would not be impressed either with the trophies of a hunter that does not have respect for the animals that he or she hunts, or the land from which they harvest.

Ingredients / Re: Medium dark crystal?
« on: October 21, 2015, 12:20:39 PM »
Personally, I'd go with 60L. It'll work fine.
+1 - I generally think of Dark crystal in the 80L range and Extra Dark in the 120L range. I've never really heard of crystal referred to as "Medium dark", but I think something in the 60L range sounds reasonable.

I'll get to the point - this is the best Berliner Weisse I've had, by far. Every BW I've tried always seems to have some flaw - not sour enough, funky kettle-sour off-flavors, too much cereal/grainy character, too strong, too watery, etc. This one is spot-on in what I'm looking for in a berliner.

The color is very pale straw, closer in color to Pinot Grigio than beer. A finger of pure white head sticks around for a short while before collapsing. Aroma is fresh lactic/lemon, with a hint of doughy pils malt. Flavor is bright citrus and lactic tang, with a clean finish that reveals hints of grain. Mouthfeel is light, but there is enough acid pucker to keep it from being watery-thin. The acidity is perfect. It is quite tart, but not down to "instant heartburn" level. It is a perfect beer to put down in mass quantity.

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