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Topics - yso191

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Commercial Beer Reviews / Blue cheese beer
« on: April 29, 2014, 05:58:23 PM »
I'm in the Everett, WA area for a couple of days. I visited 3 breweries so far.  Scuttlebutt was quite good, and McMenamins is a 'don't bother.'   The most interesting is a little nano brewery named Justice Brewing.  It was there that I tried a sour beer fermented with blue cheese cultures. The nose was totally blue cheese, but the flavor only carried hints of it.  It was surprisingly good.  about half of his beers were sour.  All were decent.  Some quite good.  Worth a try if you have opportunity.

He brews in the garage behind his house and was very welcoming.  A nice guy with a very interesting take on beer.

Ingredients / HBC 291 Pale Ale notes
« on: April 21, 2014, 09:30:37 PM »
As I mentioned in another thread, Hop Union gave the local Homebrew Club some experimental hops back in January. I came away with 6 oz. of HBC 291 (total oil 2.3, AA 11.7).  Aromas are supposed to be majoring on floral, spicy, citrus.

So I brewed a Pale Ale using .45 oz. CTZ at 60 minutes for bittering for 22 IBUs.
Then 3 oz. of 291 at 2 minutes for 9.7 IBUs.
And dry hopped the remaining 3 oz. for 5 days

The aroma was very floral - I thought honeysuckle, and had a notable grassy aspect.  Additionally there was a tropical fruit hovering beneath those, I thought guava.

The flavor majored on Salmonberry and lemongrass.

Overall a very interesting hop.  I will guess it will be a success but not a major player.  It could be stunning in just the right recipe.

Ingredients / Azacca Single hop IPA tasting notes
« on: April 21, 2014, 09:05:13 PM »
I tried a new hop a couple of weeks ago, and just gave it a serious tasting.  BTW total oils for Azacca is 1.8.
The aroma is quite enjoyable: Tropical fruits & Citrus mainly
The flavor majors on Mango, and ripe pineapple and generic citrus (maybe bending toward tangerine), Juicy fruit gum.
The only disappointment was the character of the bitterness.  First, it is so reserved that I would characterize it more of a Pale Ale than an IPA, but I like substantial bitterness in my IPA's so that may be all there is to that.  My wife thinks it is bitter enough to be an IPA.  But there is something about the flavor or character of the bitterness that I don't like. 

So if I do one again, I'll use a different bittering hop and add a bit more flavor/late additions.  Overall I'd give it a solid B.

Here's the recipe so you can see what I did:

Azacca IPA
Type: All Grain, 5.5 gallon, Boil Time: 60 min


10 lbs Pale Malt (2 Row)   78.4 %
2 lbs Munich Malt (9.0 SRM)  15.7 %
12.0 oz Caramel/Crystal Malt - 40L  5.9 %
1.00 oz Azacca [14.86 %] - Boil 60.0 min  44.0 IBUs
1.00 Items Whirlfloc Tablet (Boil 15.0 mins) 
0.50 tsp Yeast Nutrient (Boil 15.0 mins) 
1.00 oz Azacca [14.86 %] - Boil 10.0 min  16.0 IBUs
1.00 oz Azacca [14.86 %] - Boil 5.0 min  8.8 IBUs
2.00 oz Azacca [14.86 %] - Boil 1.0 min  3.8 IBUs
4.00 oz Azacca [14.86 %] - Steep/Whirlpool 5.0 min  17.5 IBUs
Re-Pitch  London ESB Ale (Wyeast Labs #1968) Fermented at 68*
4.00 oz Azacca [14.86 %] - Dry Hop 5.0 Days   0.0 IBUs

Original Gravity: 1.060 SG
Final Gravity: 1.009 SG
Alcohol by Vol: 6.7 %
Bitterness: 90.1 IBUs
Color: 7.7 SRM

I also brew with RO Water, and according to Brun' Water here is my finished water profile:
Calcium 110.6
Magnesium 15.6
Sodium 8
Sulfate 291.4
Chloride 29.5

Equipment and Software / Recommend a Grain Mill
« on: April 08, 2014, 12:52:51 PM »
On my last brew day my grain mill still acted up.  It would crush for a while, then just sit there and spin for a while.  It didn't do that when new.  I don't know what else to do.  I have adjusted the gap, and cleaned the rollers well.  It is a Cereal Killer mill if that matters.

So now I am thinking new grain mill.  What do you recommend?

General Homebrew Discussion / Two great links
« on: April 03, 2014, 02:21:16 PM »
The first one is just plain ol' entertaining "Washington State Beer Scene in 1984":

The other is educational.  Some really good/interesting brewing science resources:

Equipment and Software / Conical lessons
« on: April 03, 2014, 10:09:35 AM »
I just finished my 2nd brew on my new conical.  The big surprise is how often I have to dump yeast and hops to get any beer out.  I don't know if this is typical for a small conical like mine, but I expected the yeast and hops to sit in the cone below the two upper outlets.  Here is a picture (a Stout Tanks 7.3 gallon):

In the first brew (a RIS), I went to check the gravity via a sampler valve in the top-most T-C fitting you see there.  I got nothing but yeast, and had to open the top and draw it out using a pipette.  Not the most sanitary, and moreover, what is the %#*! point of having a sampler valve to check gravity if one has to dump the yeast first?  I would think that if the beer is not done, I want it to stay on the yeast.  I know, there is still a lot of yeast in there, but as I said this is in the category of what I expected and lessons learned.

Anyway, on the 2nd brew (an APA), I dumped the yeast prior to dry-hopping (I like the ability to do that!), and then after the allotted time for dry hopping, cold crashed the beer for 2 days assuming the hops and remaining yeast would precipitate down into the cone so I could keg using a hose connected to a valve on the middle T-C port.  Now hops were plugging that valve! And I only used 3 ounces of hop pellets.  I like to put 4-5 in my IPAs.

So apparently I am going to have to dump the yeast prior to dry-hopping, and dump the hops prior to kegging.  Is this typical?  Am I going to end up with 4 gallons from a 5.5 gallon batch because of all this dumping?  Or am I missing something - is there a better way?

Ingredients / Favorite Flavor/Aroma Hops for AIPAs
« on: April 01, 2014, 10:17:35 AM »
This list Could be very large.  Please vote for your favorite Flavor/Aroma hop for American IPAs.  Usually this is done using more than one hop so on this poll vote for 2.

Ingredients / Favorite Bittering hop for AIPA
« on: April 01, 2014, 10:00:37 AM »
Following up on the 2 hops thread, here is your opportunity to vote for your favorite bittering hop in the context of American IPA's.  I encourage you to post why you voted the way you did.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re-using yeast
« on: March 27, 2014, 02:21:51 PM »
I am just completing my 2nd brew using my new 7.3 gallon conical from Stout Tanks.  It is my first attempt at saving the yeast for a subsequent brew.  After determining that FG had been achieved, I dumped the yeast and was shocked at the amount.  This is Wyeast 1968 (London ESB). I started with one smack-pack with a 1 liter starter.  After fermenting 5.5 gallons of a 1.053 APA I got a lot more yeast than I expected.  Is this a normal amount of yeast?  If so, how much of it should I repitch for the next brew?  Here is the picture:

Yeast and Fermentation / Brett IPA help
« on: March 25, 2014, 07:03:05 PM »
My next brew will be an IPA brewed with Brett.  I'm looking for some help with the differences.  Here is my recipe:

Brett IPA   American IPA (14 B)

Type: All Grain
Batch Size: 5.50 gal
Boil Size: 7.50 gal
Boil Time: 60 min
End of Boil Vol: 6.50 gal
Final Bottling Vol: 5.50 gal

8 lbs Pale Malt, Maris Otter (3.0 SRM)    72.7 %
2 lbs Munich Malt - 10L (10.0 SRM)       18.2 %
1 lbs Caramel/Crystal Malt - 40L             9.1 %
1.50 oz Zeus [14.00 %] - Boil 60.0 min   65.7 IBUs
3.00 oz Citra [12.00 %] - Boil 5.0 min     22.5 IBUs
2.00 oz Cascade [7.30 %] - Boil 5.0 min  9.1 IBUs
1.0 pkg Brettanomyces Bruxellensis Trois (White Labs #WLP644) 
3.00 oz Mosaic [12.70 %] - Dry Hop
2.00 oz Citra [12.00 %] - Dry Hop 

Est Original Gravity: 1.056 SG
Est Final Gravity: 1.005 SG
Estimated Alcohol by Vol: 6.7 %
Bitterness: 97.3 IBUs
Est Color: 8.9 SRM

So I am curious: is the primary difference in the fermentation, with everything prior to that being the same?
How long does the fermentation go typically? 
Is the dry hopping process any different?
I have 2 vials with a 'Best Before' date of July 23, 2014.  Will one be sufficient?  Should I do a starter, or just toss it in?


Ingredients / Hop Flavor Database
« on: March 13, 2014, 09:26:26 AM »
Below is a link to a .pdf file I came across today which I found interesting.

Yeast and Fermentation / Brett gear
« on: February 23, 2014, 11:45:11 AM »
I am assuming, since Brett is a yeast, that I will not have to have a dedicated set of fermenting and bottling gear.  Is this correct?  Can I ferment with Brett in my plastic Speidel fermenter, then do my usual cleaning/sanitizing and brew the next batch with saccharomyces?

Planning an all-Brett IPA using WLP644.

General Homebrew Discussion / Origin of growlers
« on: February 22, 2014, 11:21:23 AM »
I had not heard or read the origin of the term 'growler' so when I saw it on the card below, I thought I'd share.

Beer Travel / Kenai, AK
« on: February 21, 2014, 12:08:41 AM »
I really like Alaska in general, and Kenai in particular.  If you make it here do check out the local brewery, Kassik's.  Unfortunately, the best bar in town is the worst beer bar.  All of their beer on tap is way under carbonated and awful.  But the place is hopping.  So I drink bottled beer while I smoke my cigar.  Tomorrow Soldotna, and two more breweries.

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