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Messages - denny

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: HOPS IN THE KETTLE
« on: March 23, 2011, 02:14:59 PM »
There is a bit of a decrease in utilization due to using a bag.  The commonly quoted figure is 10%, although I don't know if that's strictly accurate.  I use a bag for whole hops and haven't really found a downside.  I increase the amount I use by 10%.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Plastic off flavor in Wheat beer?
« on: March 23, 2011, 10:00:33 AM »
What's wrong with Carbon filtration? I run mine through a filter and have had it tested and there is no chlorine in water (I do double filter).

Absolutely nothing wrong with it if you have one.

Homebrew Clubs / Re: First Paris Homebrewer Meeting
« on: March 23, 2011, 09:52:00 AM »
Thanks for the translation. I took French in high school, but we're talking 20 years ago...

I took Latin in jr. high and all I can remember is how to say "Rome has big sewers"....

I'll leave it in for the full week.  I am still not sure who is right.  I keep reading conflicting posts on if I should leave it in the primary for two weeks before I bottle/keg, or if I should rack to a secondary.  I have normally racked to a secondary carboy after the first week, but I think for this batch, I'll let it sit for a full 2 weeks in the primary and see how things turn out.  I usually prime with sugar for the third week and rack it into the keg, clear the air with some CO2 and let it self carbonate a bit before I put it in the fridge and tap it.

Would you believe John Palmer, from his answer in the Ask the Experts section?

Twenty years ago, a homebrewed beer typically had better flavor, or perhaps less risk of off-flavors, if it was racked off the trub and clarified before bottling. Today that is not the case.

The risk inherent to any beer transfer, whether it is fermenter-to-fermenter or fermenter-to-bottles, is oxidation and staling. Any oxygen exposure after fermentation will lead to staling, and the more exposure, and the warmer the storage temperature, the faster the beer will go stale.

Racking to a secondary fermenter used to be recommended because staling was simply a fact of life – like death and taxes. But the risk of autolysis was real and worth avoiding – like cholera. In other words, you know you are going to die eventually, but death by cholera is worth avoiding.

But then modern medicine appeared, or in our case, better yeast and better yeast-handling information. Suddenly, death by autolysis is rare for a beer because of two factors: the freshness and health of the yeast being pitched has drastically improved, and proper pitching rates are better understood. The yeast no longer drop dead and burst like Mr. Creosote from Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life when fermentation is complete – they are able to hibernate and wait for the next fermentation to come around. The beer has time to clarify in the primary fermenter without generating off-flavors. With autolysis no longer a concern, staling becomes the main problem. The shelf life of a beer can be greatly enhanced by avoiding oxygen exposure and storing the beer cold (after it has had time to carbonate).

Therefore I, and Jamil and White Labs and Wyeast Labs, do not recommend racking to a secondary fermenter for ANY ale, except when conducting an actual second fermentation, such as adding fruit or souring. Racking to prevent autolysis is not necessary, and therefore the risk of oxidation is completely avoidable. Even lagers do not require racking to a second fermenter before lagering. With the right pitching rate, using fresh healthy yeast, and proper aeration of the wort prior to pitching, the fermentation of the beer will be complete within 3-8 days (bigger = longer). This time period includes the secondary or conditioning phase of fermentation when the yeast clean up acetaldehyde and diacetyl. The real purpose of lagering a beer is to use the colder temperatures to encourage the yeast to flocculate and promote the precipitation and sedimentation of microparticles and haze.

So, the new rule of thumb: don’t rack a beer to a secondary, ever, unless you are going to conduct a secondary fermentation.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Water to grain ratio for mash tun.
« on: March 23, 2011, 09:47:09 AM »
I agree, Kai, but I've also seen so many false positives after people have mashed for hours that I just don't see the value of the test.

the room temp was what I reported, not the temp on the bucket.

That's much too warm to make the best beer you can make.  You should be shooting for keeping the beer temp no more than upper 60s.  I prefer mid to low 60s.  Remember that fermentation will add heat.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Patco Antifoam
« on: March 23, 2011, 08:22:10 AM »
I think brewerbob ordered some of this a couple months back.  You could PM him and ask.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Water to grain ratio for mash tun.
« on: March 23, 2011, 08:19:58 AM »
I find the iodine test to be just this side of useless.  It certainly won't tell you if you have complete conversion.

It's amazing how this fallacy has perpetuated itself through the years.  Between the high possibility of false readings and the lack of useful info, I tell new brewers to just forget the iodine test even exists.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: OR Homebrew law ALERT!
« on: March 23, 2011, 08:18:14 AM »
I just want to say well done.

Thanks, Leos!

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Plastic off flavor in Wheat beer?
« on: March 23, 2011, 08:17:30 AM »
is there anyway to clear the chlorine without a systemic water filter?

A few ways.  If it's chlorine, not chloramine, you can simply draw the water the day before and let it sit uncovered overnight .  Or you can boil it.  The fast, easy way, which works for both chlorine and chloramine, is to use campden tablets.  One crushed tab added to 20 gal. of water will remove chlorine or chloramine almost instantly.

Homebrew Clubs / Re: First Paris Homebrewer Meeting
« on: March 23, 2011, 08:09:54 AM »
Very cool, Phil!  Let us know how it goes!

Homebrew Competitions / Re: NHC Region Rule
« on: March 23, 2011, 08:09:24 AM »
To be certain, email .

Was it the room temp or the beer temp you posted?  If it's the room, the beer was likely much warmer.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Why go all grain?
« on: March 23, 2011, 08:05:40 AM »
All the feedback on here has given me a lot of perspective and convinced me that it is at least worth a try.  I can always go back.


Check out the Cheap'n'Easy .

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: starter with old slurry
« on: March 22, 2011, 02:56:05 PM »
Another question- will the yeast be too shocked with about a 10-15degree difference in temp? I'm letting the slurry jar come up to room temp. It's at 62. I want to chill the starter to 75 and pitch. Good idea? Like a full batch of wort, I figure the thermal mass of the starter will keep it at 75ish if it starts fermenting soon enough. I also added a pinch of nutrient and 1 min. of O2.

Actually, you can get better performance by not letting it warm up first.  Colder yeast into warmer wort is a good thing.  I generally pull mine out of the fridge and pitch it right away.

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