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Messages - erockrph

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Is an IBU and IBU?
« on: March 10, 2015, 10:02:05 AM »
In my experience there is a difference. 50 IBU of FWH, 50 IBU of hop bursting and 50 IBU of early boil additions do not seem the same to me in the same beer. They are all good practices that have their place in different styles. I would worry less about the estimated IBUs to a recipe than how the hops are arranged in the recipe to create the best bitterness and flavor/aroma for the recipe.
My mantra with any brewing calculation is that the best use is to give a baseline for a recipe so you can compare apples-to-apples for dialing it in. Once you brew a recipe, then you have an idea of what 50 IBU's taste like for that given recipe and you have a target to adjust from.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Is an IBU and IBU?
« on: March 09, 2015, 10:02:32 AM »
An IBU is simply a lab value that is used as a surrogate indicator for the bitterness of a beer. There is a lot more going on in your mouth than a single spectroscopy value can report. While I don't necessarily buy into the whole low cohumulone = smoother beer argument, I do feel that not all IBUs are created equal. Or to restate that a bit, that the taster's palate will not necessarily perceive the same bitterness experience with two beers that measure the same IBUs in a lab.

I sent a massively all-whirlpool hopped IPA to a lab to be measured for IBUs. It came back at 98IBU, but it didn't taste like more than 60IBU to my palate -and smoothly bitter at that. I can't say for sure what was going on. It could have been that the massive fruit hop flavor skewed my perception, or there could be some chemical changes going on. But I do feel pretty strongly that whirlpool hops do not seem as bitter to my tongue.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Session Saison?
« on: March 09, 2015, 07:35:46 AM »

My base saison recipe is 1.040 OG. It's simply Pils, wheat and Aromatic, using 3711. It makes a great summer session brew.
Short detour here- do you get apple or pear from 3711?  I'm drinking my saison and I'm hoping it's not acetaldehyde.  The flat gravity sample was pepper and fruit, but not apple.  Three weeks in the bottle so I was expecting it to be a little green, just not green apple.

3711 is more pepper and citrus so if you're getting a lot of green apple then that's probably not from the yeast's intended character. IMO saison yeast can take a little longer to clean up especially the warmer the beer is fermented. I would give it a few more weeks and see if it improves.
Agreed, although it does tend to have a subdued fruity/banana ester. If it's low enough maybe it may come across as pear or apple?

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Session Saison?
« on: March 08, 2015, 03:34:21 PM »
My base saison recipe is 1.040 OG. It's simply Pils, wheat and Aromatic, using 3711. It makes a great summer session brew.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: scaling down batch size
« on: March 08, 2015, 03:31:27 PM »
I assume that goes for the hops too?  I guess the wort concentration would be the same, so halving the hops would work equally well?  This leads to the question then: why are recipes always size specific? why not just say "pounds/gallon?"
I prefer to think of recipes as OG and percent for grain bill and IBU and oz/gallon for hops. This is kind of a universal way to describe a recipe. Its also an easy way to "think out" ideas in your head. From there it's the same math exercise no matter what batch size you're using.

Beer Recipes / Re: Tomorrow's brew - Double IPA
« on: March 07, 2015, 06:49:12 PM »
The grain bill looks fine, although I prefer to skip the crystal malt. That looks like about 3 ounces of hops in the whirlpool. I would recommend increasing that a lot. I use 4 oz of hops in the whirlpool per gallon for an IPA. Which means that a sane person would want to target at least an ounce per gallon :) I'd double or even triple your whirlpool additions.

For a beer like this, hop selection is strictly a matter of personal preference. Cent/Mosaic/CTZ will make a great IIPA. Citra, Simcoe and Apollo would all be fantastic in a beer like this as well. Let us know how it turns out!

The Pub / Re: Should get special dispensation for this...
« on: March 07, 2015, 08:04:56 AM »

I was just have a little fun, looks like a nice vehicle for her. Hopefully someday I'll be able to spend money on a nice car for my wife instead of dumping money into a brewery.

Appreciated .....I'm a ball buster also.

Someday when I'm done with open air on two wheels, I'm all about the corvette. I still thinks it's one of the best value performance cars in the world....and its American made.
My Dad had both a 'vette and a BMW when I was a kid. They were both great cars, but I liked the Corvette much better. It was pretty tough to stuff a family of 4 in there, though. My brother kept kicking my shins and my head would bounce off the rear window if we hit any bumps in the road.

Beer Recipes / Re: Hoppy dark wheat ale
« on: March 06, 2015, 06:30:01 PM »
Sounds like a tasty beer. If it were me, I'd be tempted to use an English ale yeast and swap the Cascade for EKG's, but it looks really good as-is.

You're definitely following a prudent course by keeping the grain bill simple on a beer where you're not sticking to a style. You run into a lot less risk of flavors clashing.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash pH and light beers
« on: March 06, 2015, 06:08:38 PM »
alternately you could just use lactic acid and skip the acid malt all together.

+1.  Lactic is reliably 88% (at least what you get in LHBS). I always wonder how reliable that acidity is across different maltsters. Lots of ways to make beer, though.
Bingo. You can certainly make excellent beer using acidulated malt, but I prefer the level of control I get from using lactic acid of a known concentration.

Beer Recipes / Re: Today's Shopping LIst
« on: March 06, 2015, 01:24:43 PM »
Your reminding me its about time for us to make a pilgrimage to Yankee Spirits in Sturbridge Ma. Its the largest package store in New England. Its the size of a large supermarket. The space cereal would take up is whiskey and the beer section is bigger than most entire package stores. They do a ton of business, there are always license plates from 3 different states in the parking lot, so they move through their inventory quickly. The beer area isn't inside a cooler but they do seem to have the area kept as cool as they can, I would say about 50.
The Yankee Spirits in Attleboro is an old supermarket as well. I've never been to the one in Sturbridge, so I can't compare but the Attleboro one is huge. They stopped doing mix-a-six years ago, so I don't go there too often any more. But they do have a killer selection for when you're looking for something special.

Other Fermentables / Re: Anybody try kombucha
« on: March 06, 2015, 11:18:19 AM »
Thanks for the info, Mary! Your NHC talk is one of the main reasons I even tried Kombucha in the first place. Water kefir does sound like it's more up my alley since I'm not a huge vinegar fan, I figured kombucha was a good place to start since I can essentially do it with bottle dregs and ingredients I already have around the house.

I'm still new to the process, but I am already finding that I like my own homebrewed kombucha a lot better than the stuff I'm getting at the supermarket.

Beer Recipes / Re: Hibiscus - ginger saison
« on: March 06, 2015, 10:57:31 AM »
I use hibiscus in the secondary (without making a tea) and I get plenty of character and color out of it there. I think there is a lot of variability between different brands, but I find that 2/3 ounce per gallon (which would be about 100g in a 20L batch) gives me a nice pink color and enough hibiscus character without being overwhelming.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: WLP090
« on: March 06, 2015, 08:44:51 AM »

Yeah, I remember that thread now.  I never had a hint of diacetyl from 090, or heard of it from other brewers. I did the usual for my American beers - pitch @ 62, ferment at 64, ramp near the end.  I wonder if they could be a little eager to get beer on line and rush things a bit.  +1 to Steve - getting a pitch from them would be a good test. It's very clean.

Yes getting a pitch from them would be good first step. However if there has been some mutation and therefore somewhat a unique house strain, then he might experience som similar results as their products. I'd also consider just running test on fresh vial for best analysis.

I agree. But I'm betting he makes a clean beer with theirs. Sounds more like they're rushing their process. Maybe not.
Agreed. Their beers taste "homebrewey". There's some diacetyl, but they also have green beer/underattenuation flavors.

Tangent - I hate to use the term "homebrew flavor" nowadays, because I typically get that flavor more from brewpubs that rush their beer.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: cleaning bottles
« on: March 06, 2015, 08:19:25 AM »
OK, let me try it another way (and let's disregard labels for now). What if I want to skip the oxi clean step? Rinse the bottle well after drinking it, obviously, then what? Sterilize in oven. Anything else?
Other options are using the "Sanitize" setting on your dishwasher, or spraying with a no-rinse sanitizer like Star-San.

Ingredients / Re: "Hop My Beer" hop oil
« on: March 06, 2015, 07:24:35 AM »
Yeah, good eval.  I've found some value in the hop shot-type bittering extracts on IPAs, to reduce hop matter on big hop bills. But I think I'll pass on these. Clearly what SN is doing with their oils is in a whole different league.
Since they have such a raw flavor, I'm wondering if the results are different if you use them as dry hops, where they have time to sit in the beer for a week or two at packaging prior to consumption.

I think, for what I'm looking for, I'd be better off looking for lab/food-grade linalool/citronellol/geraniol/etc. That's something I've been wanting to play with.

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