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Messages - mabrungard

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The Pub / Re: Brewers Association Top 50
« on: April 06, 2016, 08:52:00 AM »
Can someone tell me about Minhas Craft Brewery? It didn't seem to fit the category to me, but I've never heard of them.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Scotch Ale - Cloudy?
« on: April 06, 2016, 08:44:15 AM »
I've gone to fermenting my Scottish ales with US-05 and that works well in producing a clean and malty ale. They are clear too. I do use a large proportion of Golden Promise. Since these are small beers, my mashing temp is a little elevated to reduce fermentability and increase body. I also use a caramalized reduction of first runnings that I found adds a deep maltiness to the beer. I do add Irish Moss in the boil to help with clarity.

I agree that there must be an ingredient in Paul's grist that is causing a haze.  I think its atypical for a Scottish to be cloudy or hazy.

I haven't had an unbearable infection in my 16 years of brewing. In some batches, I could determine that there were minor problems, but not to the point of dumping. One thing I've found over the years is that beer quality and perception can vary with time...both up and down. Beers that I initially thought should be tossed, turned out to be pleasant and interesting a few weeks or months later.

If you can afford the space to keep a problematic beer, do so. Check it over time.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Cleaning with Sodium Hydroxide
« on: April 05, 2016, 10:10:56 AM »
Are you sure you need to resort to lye??? It is a thermonuclear option that is not typically necessary. With that said, I have used lye to clean off organic deposits that things like PBW couldn't budge. In particular, I've used in to clean organic deposits from beer serving lines. It works very well, but demands utmost caution and care.

All Grain Brewing / Re: high sodium levels in RIS?
« on: April 05, 2016, 10:05:34 AM »
Having tasted a couple of Toby's beers at the national conference, I can attest that they are very tasty. Sodium is an asset in the right styles.

I see that the text said that a mashout was performed on the single infusion, but I don't see what the temperature was. I find that a mashout step does improve the extraction by around one degree Brix. The lower the final mashing step temp, the higher the step in brix between the mash step gravity and mashout gravity. So, if you mash at relatively high temps, a mashout is less worthwhile. But it is easy with my RIMS, so I always perform one.

The difference in total mashing time between the exbeeriments might be a minor contributor to a difference.

All Grain Brewing / Re: high sodium levels in RIS?
« on: April 03, 2016, 07:19:09 PM »
Working out the recipe for a RIS (with all RO water and black balanced profile) on Brunwater and to get my mash pH up to 5.6 using baking soda it says I will have 77 ppm Na.  Is this too much, or not a big deal in a huge, roasty chocolatey RIS?

I'm assuming you are using the free version? If so, that is the sodium content in the mashing water. That is not what the final wort will end up with when the sparging water dilutes that initial content. Using the Supporter's version of Bru'n Water tells you what the kettle wort concentrations are.

In my experience, having about 70 ppm Na in the kettle wort is OK in a roasty beer. Paler beers taste better to me with less Na.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Brewersfriend Mash Calc. CRS tweak?
« on: March 31, 2016, 09:52:33 AM »
The supporter's version of Bru'n Water includes CRS calculations. I'm not sure how you would include that in other software other than doing it by hand.

Since the ratio of hydrochloric and sulfuric acid is fixed in CRS, I don't think you'll be happy with the resulting chloride content if you are targeting elevated sulfate content. With only CRS, to produce 180 ppm SO4, you are going to end up around 120 ppm Cl. That is a bit high for taste. Those ions do lend to a minerally taste when present together at somewhat higher levels than this.

If you like minerally, go for it. If you don't, you'll need to find another way.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Lautering issue
« on: March 29, 2016, 11:42:32 AM »
I assume that hose is hanging down from the outlet? If so, the hose is placing an extra bit of suction on the internal piping since the end of the hose is at a lower elevation than the plain outlet. That extra suction is probably getting the wort to flow faster and draw grain through the screen.

By the way, this is the reason that old time mash tuns had gooseneck taps on the outlets. It helps reduce the head difference and avoids placing too much stress on the grain bed due to higher than appropriate flow rates.  If you raise you tube outlet elevation, you will achieve the same result.

The Pub / Re: Muddy muddy muddy dull dull dull
« on: March 25, 2016, 06:43:44 PM »
all I could do was mumble "muddy, muddy, muddy dull dull dull" and "maybe you need to look at your water". Still a long way to go...

There is so much bad beer out there and so much of it is due to water.

Water is not really the last thing a brewer should work on.  In some cases, it is probably one of the first. Too bad some brewers keep thinking that its the last thing to concern themselves with.

Beer Recipes / Re: I want to brew an Altbier
« on: March 25, 2016, 05:02:45 PM »
I've brewed at both ends of the malt bill spectrum and I have to say that neither grist is correct. With a very high proportion of Munich malt, the beer is too richly malty. I just brewed the recipe that Denny posted which is at the all Pils end of the spectrum and have to say that its fine, but it needs just a bit of Munich to add to the depth of malt flavor. I'm guessing that about 25% light Munich might meet the depth I expect. 

All Grain Brewing / Re: Help w/ pH predictions through mini mashing.
« on: March 23, 2016, 05:58:48 PM »
As mentioned above, you want to mash with very low alkalinity water (ie: distilled water preferrably) and at a typical water/grist ratio. The primary grain you need to check are the base malts since they tend to make up a large portion of the grist and have the greatest impact on overall mash pH.

I remember someone advocating fermenting in a new garbage can liner a few years ago. As long as that bag is leak free, that seems like it could be a good option for a fermentation vessel. Placing some sort of flat plate over the top of the container should serve to keep infectors out.

Procedure trumps gadgets. I am an engineer and love gadgets, but procedure is where you make the best beer.

I'll go along with that after a point. I feel that having some correct and useful gadgets are important for success, but after that success is based on procedure.

I have a stainless 12 gal Blichman conical and the only reason I switched to it was the fear of broken glass. Having brewed in carboys for about 3 years, I recognized that I was playing with fire and the potential for debilitating injury persuaded me to switch. Unfortunately, plastic was not a material that is suited for breweries. So stainless steel was it.

I don't think a conical offers much at the homebrewer's scale of brewing. I don't draw off yeast since I don't keep the beer on the lees that long and if I removed the yeast, I wouldn't be able to get the beer out of the cone below the racking port.

To tell you the truth, I think that I would go with a big stainless vessel that is more akin to a Brew Bucket or similar.

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