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Messages - mabrungard

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Equipment and Software / Re: Thermapen Open Box sale
« on: February 01, 2014, 06:09:30 AM »
Ah yes, the Thermopop does have a bit less accuracy than a Thermapen. I picked up the RT301WA model that has 0.9F accuracy compared to the 0.7F for the Thermapen. So no significant difference there. They had a sale of $16 each when you buy 2 or more. It was worth it.

Ingredients / Re: Is my water too minerally?
« on: February 01, 2014, 06:01:53 AM »
With those adjustments, that water is barely mineralized. I sure hope your friend doesn't drink many English beers. Many of those are mineralized to a much greater degree just because their tap water is naturally mineralized. In addition, many pale ale and IPA brewers routinely boost their calcium and sulfate to levels far higher than you use.

I have never noted a minerally flavor from water with the minor levels you indicate. Now if you boost the chloride level over 100 ppm and the sulfate over something like 200 ppm, then you might have a minerally note.

Equipment and Software / Re: Thermapen Open Box sale
« on: January 31, 2014, 03:08:11 PM »
Why get a Thermapen when there are other instruments from Thermoworks that are just as accurate and FAR less expensive?

Beer Recipes / Re: Mac ESB
« on: January 30, 2014, 09:18:35 AM »
I agree with Jonathon, a true Scottish yeast can throw a hint of smokey phenol into the beer. I have experienced this, but have not deciphered what conditions that yeast wants in order for it to create that phenol. Some brewers try to cheat and use a smoked malt of some form to add the phenol, but I haven't been impressed with the result. I can tell you that achieving that phenol in conjunction with the characteristic Golden Promise sweetness is a beautiful thing.

In the case of an ESB that is likely to be more hop focused, I'm not sure you would pick out the phenol. In addition, I'm not sure that it would be a positive addition. However, if its reserved and melds well with the other malt and hop components, it could be fine. Do be on the lookout for excessive phenolic character. That will likely be dinged in judging.

Beer Recipes / Re: German Pils - hop and malt questions
« on: January 24, 2014, 06:34:59 AM »

Jever, Germany water profile:

Ca: 60   
Mg: 5   
Na: 15   
SO4: 75   
Cl: 30   
HCO3: 105

The alkalinity would have to be neutralized for use in a G Pils, but the sodium, chloride, and sulfate levels give you an idea of an appropriate balance and intensity for those ions.

Just re-reading this thread, and noticing this statement from martin. Any idea how one would go about neutralizing the alkalinity, assuming I am building this water from the ground up starting with distilled?

A portion of the alkalinity is knocked down by pre-boiling. That can bring the bicarb down to the 60 ppm range. The rest of the alkalinity is neutralized with lactic acid (acid malt in Germany). AHA members will see more of this approach in the Mar/Apr 2014 Zymurgy.

If starting with low alkalinity water, neutralization to the degree above would not be required.

Commercial Beer Reviews / Re: Full Sail Berliner Weiss
« on: January 24, 2014, 06:23:21 AM »
Since Full Sail is only a few miles from Wyeast's place, I'm betting that it was similar to the BW the Wyeast was serving at the Philly conference. A little too one-dimensional. If I recall correctly from a conference seminar from a few years ago, they said a good BW does have a touch of Brett in it. An all Lacto sourness can be one-dimensional.

+1 to the 1809. That is a nice example if its fresh enough.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: commercial examples of Kolsch
« on: January 22, 2014, 03:42:44 PM »
I like the Reissdorf, but prefer the Sunner.

All Grain Brewing / Re: German Pilsner water?
« on: January 21, 2014, 10:30:23 AM »
What yeast Denny?  That part about yeast evolving to conform to the local water is just a hypothesis on my part. I need data on which yeast worked well at what calcium content. I do know that the boh pils yeast does not like calcium at 40 ppm.

Beer Recipes / Re: Munich ESB
« on: January 21, 2014, 09:14:37 AM »
If you used the recommendations from the recipe, you are fine. That already assumes a dilution and not the full Burton strength.

All Grain Brewing / Re: German Pilsner water?
« on: January 21, 2014, 06:44:43 AM »
Martin, can you point me to any references to lager yeast and low Ca?

Having lived and traveled around Germany, the water can be variable. Some is pretty hard. Where I lived it had a mineral taste, but that was more wine country.

The reference for low calcium in Southern Bavaria will be published in the Mar/Apr 2014 issue of Zymurgy. The water of Southern Bavaria is quite similar...hard and alkaline. That makes it easily softened by pre-boiling or lime softening. Either of those options have been available for over a hundred years. So yeasts from that region are likely acclimatized to low calcium conditions.

However, places like Jever and Dortmund have water with more permanent hardness. I expect that yeasts used in those places do not have to have low calcium content to perform well. An extensive article on this calcium/yeast issue should be published in Zymurgy, probably in May/June. 

Beer Recipes / Re: Munich ESB
« on: January 21, 2014, 06:35:28 AM »
Yes I used the Burton on Trent water from the most recent issue of Zymurgy.

Oh, that's too bad. I guess you didn't actually read the article about the fact that the local water was typically diluted naturally to a less mineralized condition. The Pale Ale profile just happens to be similar to that diluted Burton groundwater.

All Grain Brewing / Re: German Pilsner water?
« on: January 20, 2014, 07:34:31 PM »
For a lager yeast, I would aim for a much lower calcium content along with lower chloride and sulfate. Just recognize that some lager yeast perform better when the calcium content is low.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Distilled water brewing
« on: January 20, 2014, 07:32:11 PM »
Lennie, that 100 ppm estimate is based on a typical water/grist of about 1.5 qt/lb. I'm sure there is significant difference in the mineral content of malts based on where they were grown. Clearly, that mineral content imparted into the wort is variable.

Dave, I've tasted beers made without minerals and they are bland. Some content is needed for flavor. As I pointed out, AJ likes low content, but not zero content.  The beers don't taste right without some mineral content.

Beer Recipes / Re: Munich ESB
« on: January 20, 2014, 02:49:56 PM »
NO! Not the Burton water I hope. The Pale Ale water profile is much less extreme than Burton water.

The other thing I can see in this recipe is that it may end up more like an Alt. If the hop aroma is low and the Munich malt comes through and the beer dries out well, the beer could be Alt like.

With respect to well hopped beers, I agree that the malt can clash with the hopping. That is why a very simple grist is used in a typical American Pale Ale. Hopefully that won't be the case here.

Equipment and Software / Re: Blow off tube odor
« on: January 20, 2014, 02:44:48 PM »
Don't worry about that. But do get the tube reasonably clean and free of deposits. Then you can boil that tube for about 10 or 15 minutes to assure that (most) everything is dead in there. There can be some organisms that make it through the boil, but they are not typically beer spoiling.

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