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Messages - erockrph

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Hop addiction
« on: November 26, 2015, 01:17:06 PM »
A few years back, I tossed 10-15 lb. of very old hops.  That kinda cured me of over ordering...or at least made me cut back some!

I will more than likely end up giving a portion of each pound away to other brewers.    I gave away a sealed one pound mylar bag of whole Tettnanger not long ago.  Purchasing directly from the West Coast in multi-pound lots to save on shipping brings the per ounce price down to the point where I can be generous with other brewers.  I have yet to meet a brewer who will not take free hops as long as they are still in good shape.  I wish that Hops Direct would sell half pound packages.  Yakima Valley sells half pound packages, but I have received less than stellar hops from them in the past.
I'm a fan of the 4oz packages that Farmhouse sells. It's just the right size so that I still have enough left over to brew with again after I brew a test batch. I think it also splits the difference between an ounce or two and a full pound quite nicely.

While I have been happy with the vast majority of the hops I have gotten from YVH, I have had a couple of batches of whole-cone hops that were lackluster - lots of loose bractioles, less intact cones, and not as much aroma. In comparison, the recent sample of X-17 that I got from the grower was obviously cut fresh off the bale - very sticky, big intact cones, and aroma rivalling most pellet hops.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Hop addiction
« on: November 26, 2015, 09:56:29 AM »
So let's see if I can work the math out in my head. I was already sitting on about 8# of random hops, some full pounds, and just ordered in 6# from YVH and am awaiting 2# from Label Peelers, putting me at 16# roughly on hand. I brew about 12-14 batches per year, using between 2-16oz per batch. I have enough hops to last, wait, I better not even think about this. Thank you for your support
I'm in the same boat, but probably in the low 20's in poundage. My problem is now I have hops that are getting on in age and I'd rather just use the newer hops. I may have to *gasp* just throw a bunch out to make room. Such a damn shame - there are starving children in Africa with no hops at all and here I am just throwing them away...

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Brü's Views | On Craft Brewery Buyouts
« on: November 26, 2015, 09:49:16 AM »
From my own personal perspective, I'm OK with it. If a brewery owner has poured their blood, sweat and tears into their business, they should be allowed to recoup on that. As many bigger players start snapping up smaller breweries, that will only serve to increase access to those craft brands. Goose Island IPA is all over the place since the AB buyout. If the beer is good, then I'll drink it. If it sucks, I won't.

But I can certainly see the cause for concern by the little guys. Not every craft beer drinker is as discerning as me. A good friend of mine likes good beer, but his fridge is always stocked with Sam Adams and Sierra Nevada. I fell like most beer drinkers are the same way - who has the biggest display, best packaging, most familiar name, etc.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Hop addiction
« on: November 25, 2015, 10:23:00 PM »
I must confess, even though I know I have no room for them, and swore to myself that I wouldn't do it, I bought some Meridian, Azacca and Pacific Gem from Farmhouse today after I posted their Black Friday link.

On a semi-related note, I posted a review of Meridian on the Farmhouse website as I was making my purchase. John sent me an email as he approved my review and we ended up going back and forth a bit over our love for Meridian and some of our favorite uses for it. I now understand why they have such a great selection of quality hops - John is obviously a big hophead. He also mentioned that they are planning on opening a nanobrewery in a few months, and that Meridian was going to be their feature hop. It's too bad I don't live out their way, because if the quality of their beer is anything like the quality of their hops, then they're bound to be quite successful.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Adding Dark Malts at Vorlauf?
« on: November 25, 2015, 01:22:09 PM »
Three of us in Belgium brewed the same base beer for a Supplication clone. A double-ish ale with 5% Carafa Special III. I was the only one who added that Gordonesquely in Vorlauf. The difference was very clear: mine was not only lighter in color but also less roasty. Not better or worse, just different. I would probably not do it for a heavy stout, but for this beer I liked it.
This is what I was getting at when I mentioned lower extraction. If the other brewers used a lower amount of Carafa and mashed it to end up at the same color as your beer with the grains added at vorlauf, would the flavor difference still be there? I'm leaning stongly towards "no" on this.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: black friday deals
« on: November 25, 2015, 10:48:25 AM »
Farmhouse just put theirs up:
Nice prices. Hard to justify with my supply, but.......
I hear ya. What's really keeping me from stocking up is that a lot of them are still 2014 supply. That 2015 Meridian is calling my name, though...

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: black friday deals
« on: November 25, 2015, 10:26:33 AM »

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: black friday deals
« on: November 25, 2015, 10:06:37 AM »

Define the term "professional judge".
You pay me to judge your beer.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: 10 point FG difference
« on: November 25, 2015, 09:38:54 AM »
Limit dextrinase activity in a long, low-temperature mash is a large reason why commercial adjunct lagers are able to finish so dry (as in sub-1.000 FG dry). I've gotten 83% attenuation on a 1.142 all-malt barleywine using a highly flocculant English yeast by targeting limit dextrinase in the mash.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: 10 point FG difference
« on: November 25, 2015, 09:22:31 AM »
I think 1.020 is close to where I'd expect a Baltic Porter of 1.078 OG to finish with US-05. It's the 1.010 FG that seems a bit out of line at first glance.

But I think I may have a possible explanation. You mashed your first batch for 3 hours in the mid 140's. That is the upper end of limit dextrinase range. Limit dextrinase is capable of converting dextrins that alpha-and beta- amylase cannot work on to fermentable sugars, leading to a much more fermentable wort. Your second mash was in the low 150's and would have denatured the limit dextrinase quite rapidly. Is that enough to account for 10 gravity points? I'm not 100% sure, but I do suspect that is where the majority of the difference is coming from.

Personally, I don't think the 1.020 batch is stuck and I wouldn't waste my time trying to get it to ferment down further if it tastes good.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Adding Dark Malts at Vorlauf?
« on: November 24, 2015, 04:31:22 PM »

I'm in the minority - I mash it all together and account for it in software. Zero acrid bite.

Yep, same here.  Adding dark malts at vorlauf decreases or changes the flavor impact you get from them.  If that's what you want, fine.  Usually it's not what I want.

I do the same as well. My thought is that you are probably just extracting less by adding them at vorlauf. If you were to add more dark grain to make up the difference in color, you'd probably be back to a similar flavor contribution as well. I just mash it all together and adjust the quantity of roasted grain in the recipe if needed.

Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk

I'm not a fan of having the recipe in front of the judge while they are tasting. It's too easy to taste what you're expecting to taste when you have the ingredient list in front of you. Too much room for bias that way. A blind tasting would be much more valuable.

Not having a local club or LHBS myself, I can appreciate the service you have to offer. If I was seriously into competitions or planning on opening a brewery, then I'd certainly give it a shot.

Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk

Other Fermentables / Re: Session Cyser
« on: November 24, 2015, 12:35:20 PM »
Dave, how is the body on your mulberry cyser? That's always been a concern of mine when I've been planning low-gravity meads - that they'd end up watery. I'm sure yeast choice and FG would have an impact on that as well.

As far as making a true session cyser goes, I'd be concerned that you'd lose a lot of the apple flavor. You would need to dilute the apple juice with water to get down to a low enough OG to finish at a moderate ABV. That may end up washing out a lot of the apple character you're looking for. One way to mitigate that a bit is to let the mead finish completely dry, then backsweeten with more juice or even apple concentrate. But even then, I'm not sure if that's enough to leave you the apple character that you're after.

Beer Recipes / Re: London Calling?
« on: November 24, 2015, 08:46:52 AM »
Actually, now that its had 24 hrs to settle down from being hauled in... last night there was a smidgen of haze. Now the carbonation has equalized and its brilliant clear. That strange tea sweetness is gone. Its quite nice. Lesson, dont jump to conclusions.

I jump to conclusions for almost every beer I brew...haha. My kolsch is a repeat offender in that my notes specifically state 'this beer really needs a month in the keg to come together'. For the last batch, I was disappointed in it was in the keg for a month and then it was glorious.
I almost dumped my Gewurz Saison in frustration when my initial samples were nowhere close to what I had expected. I put the keg aside to condition at room temp for 6 months and now it is a beer I am particularly proud of and on my short list of scheduled rebrews.

Its easy to get caught up in wanting to drink everything super fresh just because you can. Time is an overlooked ingredient in brewing. Some recipes need a lot, some need a modest amount, and for some it isn't called for at all.

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