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Messages - narvin

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Equipment and Software / Re: Dear White Labs
« on: July 12, 2012, 05:05:25 AM »
Maybe you should reverse your procedure?  You don't really need an airlock during fermentation, since CO2 is always outgassing.  Later I'd worry about oxidation if the beer is no longer fermenting, unless this makeshift airlock is truly air-tight.

Air temperature is going to fluctuate very quickly. The walls will stay cold after the freezer shuts off, cooling air near the sides and causing convection currents that show fluctuations on your probe reading.  Even with a fan to even things out, you're never going to be able to keep the air temperature around 63 without cycling the freezer on and off constantly, and this will break your freezer pretty quickly.

You don't care about air temperature; you want to maintain the temperature of your beer, so tape the probe to the side of your carboy (or use a thermowell).  5 gallons of liquid has a lot more thermal mass, so the freezer will run for longer periods of time and then shut off for longer, and your beer temperature should only fluctuate 1 or 2 degrees.

Check out  They have a yeast starter size calculator.  Even with healthy pack of yeast, you might not have enough for a lager.

Ingredients / Re: Calcium Carbonate
« on: July 11, 2012, 06:06:23 PM »
Calcium chloride, or even sodium chloride (non-iodized), can accentuate the fullness or sweetness of beer.

The only effect calcium carbonate will have on the flavor of your beer will be negative, unless you're making a dark beer and know that you need it based on a complete water report.  Carbonates are only useful to balance out the correct amount of acidity.  In most cases, I find that chalk is often not needed.  It's better to err on the side of caution with water additions, especially with chalk.

Ingredients / Re: Carbon filtered water
« on: July 04, 2012, 05:13:13 PM »
You should always filter your water if it contains chlorine.  I personally would want more sulfates in an IPA.  For more delicate beers, you have a lot of temporary hardness that you could precipitate by pre-boiling your water, but I don't see a problem with just adding the gypsum for this one.  It would add something like 75 ppm of sulfate and 30 ppm of calcium.

All Things Food / Re: Foie Gras in California
« on: July 04, 2012, 07:51:20 AM »

The criminals did something to deserve their punishment, the geese didn't.

I don't know, I've never met a goose that wasn't a complete jerk.  And if a human defecated like that in public, you'd better believe he'd be in for some punishment.  :D

Foie Gras seems to be one of those things that looks really shocking to humans, but isn't any different than fattening up a farm animal because of the way the goose's anatomy works.  Factory farming in general is questionable and kind of gross, and I think that is the bigger issue that needs to be addressed.  At the same time, as it has been said, animals aren't people, and while cruelty is unnecesary it is a contradiction to consider them innocent and lacking free will in an attempt to excuse the cruelty of nature while granting them humanity.  Deep down, the animal rights movement is really about ourselves (what isn't?) - the vestiges of animality are in every one of us, and if we can't respect animals it is much easier to dehumanize our fellow man.  Like any argument, things devolve into two extremes, where animals are either saints more deserving of help than humans (an animal is without sin, after all) or just another resource on the earth to be mined for industrial use.

Commercial Beer Reviews / Re: Monk's Cafe Flemish Sour Ale
« on: July 02, 2012, 10:06:07 PM »
Really nice beer, brewed by Van Steenberge (in Belgium) for Monk's Cafe.  It's a very well done, and drinkable, Flanders that is approachable without being a sweet imitation.  Rodenbach Grand Cru (not the blended regular Rodenbach) is THE classic and still my favorite, but this is a great one to pick up as well.

Beer Recipes / Re: What makes a good Saison?
« on: July 01, 2012, 12:11:49 PM »
Rye, wheat, or any raw grains will go well in a Saison.  After all, it is a farmhouse beer, and whatever adjuncts they had around would go in to the beer.

One thing I'd suggest is resist the urge to make this a high gravity beer.  The yeast will dry it out, even without sugar, but you're going to end up with a heavier beer if you have a higher OG.  The classics will start in the 1.050 - 1.060 range and finish at 1.005 or below.  The illusion of body comes from high carbonation, firm bitterness, and lots of yeast flavor.

Equipment and Software / Re: GIve Up on ProMash??
« on: June 29, 2012, 10:05:10 AM »
What kind of update does Promash need?  It does everything I need it to do seamlessly.

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD

It would be nice if it was Mac OS compatible for those of us that would like to use it without running an emulator.

Wine Is Not an Emulator. 

(Seriously, that's what WINE stands for.  Unix humor, I know.)

Equipment and Software / Re: What pH meter do you use?
« on: June 29, 2012, 07:24:30 AM »
I use the MW102.  I haven't had any problems with the automatic calibration.  YMMV.

Awesome!  Will have to find myself when I have some time.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Interesting results from low-pH brewing water
« on: June 27, 2012, 02:46:46 PM »
Just goes to show how water pH is not all that important.  Once the alkalinity is neutralized, it doesn't take much acid at all to drop the pH of the water, so it makes sense that it wouldn't have too much effect on your final result.

Ingredients / Re: No hop flavour
« on: June 27, 2012, 01:49:00 PM »
More late hops!  If I'm doing a hop stand (which I've done for my last couple of IPAs and loved the results), I like at least 2 - 4 oz of flameout hops.  I used 2 oz per 5 gallons for flameout and 2 oz of dry hop last time.

Homebrew Clubs / Re: BN Army wins club of the year.
« on: June 26, 2012, 02:30:35 AM »
What a bratty blog post.  If anything, the crowd was surprised since not everyone knows the rules for club of the year and the consensus up to that point was, "Hey, those guys from Austin are winning EVERYTHING".

Events / Re: Nhc tickets mailed?
« on: June 14, 2012, 07:29:00 AM »
So let me get this straight, I bought a pass for me and 1 guest and I cant chose who that is? Wife wife likes to hang out with me but not interested in home brew, while my buddy at work is just getting into home brew and I think would really enjoy club night, but I cant use my gust pass for that? Seems a bit counter productive.

Well, if they do OK it, he's still going to have to wear a big badge around his neck that says "Nancy" (or something like that)       :D

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