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Messages - mpietropaoli

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I think headspace is the concern.  Aluminum will put a barrier right at the top of the liquid/grist line

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Well said above.  Though iirc unless using chemical protection throughout the mash (smb with preboiled strike water), you will get a good amount of the malt phenols oxidizing. 

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I always had a sneaking suspicion Denny was sponsored by Oxsanto Corp.!

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Ok hopefully my last didn't come off as snarky, but I guess now I understand why this thread has raged on and thats all I meant to say.  As i said i response to Denny, nobody is saying this is finding is anything new, just a method that these guys found worked to achieve the desired result with a little effort in most homebrewing setups.

 For the record, we decided to try this shortly after reading the paper (a helles was on the docket anyway), and it really wasn't a huge deal on our larger system.  For my 5G BIAB, I did purchase a second/new kettle (so I can basically lauter and not lift the bag with splashing), but that needed to happen anyway.  I was going to try to knock out a simple pils on my 5G, and (if people want), I'll report back on issues I had.  Cheers with a pint of flabby maibock!

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Got it.  Ok, so it is then an issue of most people just flat out don't like the authors then?  I'm not trying to be argumentative or troll, but this makes a lot more sense now.  Admittedly, I was late to this party and didn't have this background, so you've answered my questions!


I think I saw someone mention that they recommend added sulfite at packaging.  Is that true or am I misremembering?

Their general recommendation for cold-side O2 protection is yeast, supposedly because it does a much better job scavenging than SMB, and because its in the beer already.  Though I think you're right, someone on there was toying around with adding a small dose of SMB at kegging just to provide a little more antioxidant, but that's not in the paper/general guidelines.

24 ppm sodium is well below taste threshold

I was going to say, the resulting amount of sodium did not seem to be significant.  I know salt can boost flavors, but not at this concentration.   Basically the wort tasted brighter, fuller, and much more like sweetened cereal (grapenuts with honey on them or maltomeal) whereas a lot of my worts just taste, well, sweet. 

Also, Beersk, I don't know Bryan well, but in talking with him, my understanding is that he (and most of these guys if not all of them) are doing the exact opposite of saying people should accept their work/hypothesis/method as gospel.  This is one of the reasons it is not a scientifically structured paper.  Its basically "This is a problem that some of the best breweries mitigate.  Here's the way we found to get to a similar or better result, give it a shot.  Or don't"  And for whatever reason, that seems to make homebrewers +/- 46 pages of angry.

Right (and this is the last I'll say on this), but nobody is saying you should accept it as fact. 

I am just wondering why when someone else posts a process that works for them, it is not met with vitriol and 'burden-of-proof' level of skepticism?

Does Brewtan sponsor this board btw?  ;D

One thing I wonder about is if the German breweries that produce the beers that are held up as examples are following any of these procedures.  After talking to a few German brewers, I have yet to find one that does it this way or knows any other brewer who does.  That of course doesn't mean that there aren't, but can anyone cite any examples?

Right, but Denny, these guys never claimed that German breweries (or any breweries) were using these exact procedures.  But the evidence is certainly out there that the best breweries are minimizing or eliminating O2 ingress throughout.  What they are attempting to present is essentially a hack that is pretty accessible to homebrewers to get the same result (low DO throughout hot side and cold side). 

I have to say, we followed the procedure on the helles we have fermenting, and it really didn't add a lot of time or brain damage to the process.  And the wort (fermenter sample) just tasted different.  And awesome.  Really awesome.  Confirmation bias?  Maybe, but I do have some sensory analysis training/experience, and I did my best to evaluate it objectively. 

I think the answer lies in that the compounds are different and more volatile.  Hop oils are different than phenols, no?

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is it just as simple as they aren't wet or crushed when being stored?


I'm planning on starting with mini-mashes in a randall with and without.  It's interesting that the mash is not aromatic when using a O2 scavenging compound, but I still think that reading into this (and what exactly the pathways are for aroma) is a stretch, and things are being over simplified.

Remember though, its more the pre-boil and starting with water that has zero DO.  According to the paper, the phenol oxidizes within seconds of dough in with o2-saturated water.  The SMB is just the hot side protection since you are not mashing @ boiling temps (and zero o2-solubility), so it can't work as some magic fairy dust. 

One of the guys over there monitored DO when trying to 'just' use lots of SMB to counteract DO, and there was still an s-ton of DO.  So the SMB can protect the mash some (just with the o2 in the headspace, but you either need to run the strike water through a deoxy column, boil it, or otherwise deoxygenate (one guy is trying yeast and some extract, which has supposedly yielded good results, at least with DO readings). 

I have seen the speedo pic.  And I can't unsee it.


Many people here are planning to do tests, including me.  So I'm not rejecting it, just the claims that make no sense to me and have no evidence to back them up.

I try not to accept any junk science.  Does a beer actually lose its nose, or does it just lose its carbonation that is carrying it out of the glass?  Obviously everything we smell is caused by molecules being given off, but if the mash can remain aromatic for 60 minutes, how is it possible that a 30 second exposure to oxygen has "destroyed" the aroma?

Ok, now I get ya. 

FTR, I am not blindly swallowing this either.  But most of the guys on that forum can brew.  Really well.  So at the outset, I figured it was worth a listen and a try. 

I don't think its that the aroma is 'destroyed'.  On a different scale, that is like saying blasting a finished beer with oxygen will 'destroy' the flavor of the beer.  The beer will still have flavor, it will just be a different flavor, maybe the one you want, maybe not...likely not.  Supposedly the phenol is very volatile, and very easily falls prey to creepy drifter O2 molecules. 

I have tried and judged lots of lagers, and many of them are really really really good...and solid...and drinkable.  So you can absolutely make a good beer, even a beer that many will think is great (in American craft beer standards) without Lodo brewing. 

But I absolutely do taste a difference in fresh, non-abused German beer.  Even lining up an excellent, celebrated American version like Pivo Pils or Prima against Warsteiner or Radenberger, the beer just tastes different.  If someone cannot taste the difference, or dismisses it as confirmation bias, etc., fine...but I don't.  And in talking to several of these guys, I believe they are on to something. 

We tried this on a helles on our 1/2bbl system, and I have to say, ZERO malt/'mash' aroma during the mash.  The fermenter sample tasted like something I have not tasted in 85-ish batches. 

Again I really don't mean to be snarky, but I have just read way too many 'discussions' on homebrewer boards that end with "it works for me" or "I can't tell the difference" to believe that there is a rigorous scientific, peer-reviewed standard that applies to all changes in widely-accepted homebrewing dogma. 

Off-topic, are you a member of any clubs in Baltimore?  If Baltibrew or CSI, tell Boddy and Brent that Pietro said they are each a coward and a cheat.  ;D


More junk science.  5ppm of oxygen is not the cause of hop aroma being lost, it is the temperature of the wort.

Have you identified this compound?  Does a lager lose its aroma after sitting in a glass for a few minutes as this phenol is oxidized?

I left my gas chromatograph at home today, so no I have not identified it.  I didn't say that O2 was the reason for hop aroma leaving beer, I said its the reason for the malt compound leaving the beer/wort. 

But my question is why homebrewers are willing to accept some 'junk' science, and reject others.  It seems to me, its because a few kids wouldn't let others play in their elite kickball league on the playground.

and yes, a lager does lose its aroma when in a glass, just like a hoppy beer!  If they're in your nose, they're not in your beer (or at least, not as many of them, so with 100+ IBU, all late hop beers, it may not make as much of a difference).

Just a question, not meaning to be pointed, but have you tried this method, or even the 'fast extract' test they recommend?  Its just strange to me that people have so much energy to debate this and poke holes in it on the internet, but zero energy to give it a shot themselves (very un-homebrewer!)

These papers and products talk specifically about shelf stability 6-12 months out and other stability issues like haze reduction.  It's a big jump to say that these will do anything other than accelerate the traditional lagering process.

Exactly. It's hard to believe that brewtan could cause a significant improvement in itness that professional brewers have failed to notice. It sounds a bit like snake oil to me. A triangle test should shine a bit more light on things.

Unfortunately, we don't really know what "itness" is, so it may be hard to decide if a beer has "it".

"It" is a phenol in the malt.  That oxidizes almost immediately upon dough-in without inert gas or a chemical alternative to eat up/bind to O2.  For which different people have different flavor thresholds, just like any flavor compound. 

Homebrewers believe pretty readily that if you smell hops over your kettle, that is aroma that you want in your beer, when you drink it, that is instead making your garage smell great for an hour.  Why is it so inconceivable that a similar compound exists in malt, and if your mash smells great, those compounds are leaving your wort, and will certainly not be in your beer?

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