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Messages - reverseapachemaster

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Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Wyeast 3726 fermentation time
« on: September 16, 2015, 07:38:11 AM »
What kind of heat pad are you using? Maybe mine is just weak! Also - how are you monitoring temp in the fermentor? I like a thermowell for measuring during primary, but I'm considering moving it to the side during conditioning.

I use reptile tape which is a product designed to heat reptile tanks from the bottom. It's the same idea as a brewbelt but with two heat elements. I wrap it around the fermentor and tape it on. It's plugged into a Johnson temperature controller and then placed in my fermentation fridge. The temperature probe is taped to the side of the fermentor where the belt isn't. I've gotten that set up all the way up to 110 (for lacto) without a problem. Once fermentation gets going the fermentor stays warm enough with the fridge's insulation and the heat from the fermentation so it's barely even running until fermentation winds down.

Going Pro / Re: Mitch Steele on the craft beer industry
« on: September 15, 2015, 07:08:35 AM »
I can more or less agree with him. One point that I thought he took an unsurprisingly narrow view is how craft breweries poach brewers from one another. That's not just a function of cost-shifting to competitors. Like many industries the large businesses always eat the cost of training new workers because they have the most job openings to take on new employees. People then want to work somewhere less regimented and drift off to smaller competitors. That's true in breweries and Steele knows that as well as anybody having left his AB position for craft beer. People at Stone leave to go work at some smaller craft brewery.

It's also far easier to gain promotion and pay by jumping between businesses. If craft brewer A has a head brewer it likes then your chance of moving up to head brewer at that business is nearly zero. You have to move elsewhere and in a market where new breweries are constantly popping up it's likely you will find a head brewer position in a startup. There are a small number of promotions available at any brewery so moving between competitors is almost a requirement to move up in the industry. It's also easier to increase one's salary by jumping from one brewery to another where the later brewery pays better. Raises just aren't that great in brewing.

His point should be well taken by the industry even if he is making it in a way that doesn't make Stone out to be at least partially complicit in the same problem. The cost-shifting burden to brewers that train brewers is a pain that is partially felt because this is an industry where there are so many people begging to get in the doors to work that they will do it for free and wages are being set against that trend. I doubt Stone takes on much free labor but they probably have at some point in their past and undoubtedly employ people who got into the industry that way.

All Grain Brewing / Re: What Brunwater setting for a Flanders Red?
« on: September 15, 2015, 06:55:16 AM »
I would opt for whatever malty profile matches the SRM of your recipe. For sour beer I usually use the appropriate color range's balanced profile for pale to amber and malty for anything darker. Seems to work well for me. A malty profile works particularly well for this style where you want to try to keep some of the sweet malt flavors present against the acidity, oak and brett character.

Anybody desperate to distinguish DMS from other corn-esque aromas in beer need only leave some wort in a jar outside overnight and let it ferment for a few days. Give it a good whiff. You will almost certainly have that terrible overboiled cabbage and corn smell of DMS strong enough that it will be apparent to almost anybody. When you get a big punch of DMS it's clearly not H2S or the presence of corn.

If the results of this experiment are that with a vigorous boil, sufficient surface area and well modified pils malt one does not need a ninety minute boil then I can accept those results are likely accurate. What I find unusual about the results is that there is a visual distinction between the beers but no discernible difference between the boils even discounting the absence of DMS. If the difference in boil time was sufficient to produce caramelization or mellanoidin formation then we should expect to see some change in the flavor to account for all the reactions taking place during the longer boil.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Brettanomyces pellicle or infection ?
« on: September 14, 2015, 09:07:49 AM »
Acetobacter will form a mother, not a pellicle. Acetobacter wants oxygen so a pellicle, which limits oxygen flow, would be worthless to it. You will know you have a serious acetobacter problem when you find a mother floating in the beer. It looks like a greenish fried egg.

Brett will form a pellicle in most situations.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Most likely culprit of a slight banana ester?
« on: September 14, 2015, 09:03:23 AM »
A warm fermentation plus a little underpitching would do the trick.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Wyeast 3726 fermentation time
« on: September 13, 2015, 09:13:27 AM »
I also disagree about the irrelevance of fermenting warm. I prefer the yeast character of a warm fermentation over a cooler one. Some strains in the mid-70s or lower are bland in my opinion.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: the flavor of fruit in fruit beer
« on: September 12, 2015, 10:19:24 AM »
I understand that, but is there, say such a difference in acid content between raspberries and strawberries? Raspberries work, strawberries don't.

I can't speak to specific acid content of any fruit but you need to look at not just the volume of acid but the type of acid. We would all likely agree that raspberries are far more acidic by perception than strawberries so we've got to look beyond simply the ph--as one needs when canning fruit--and look at how the acids interact with the fruit.

Just look at the way each berry is usually eaten. When strawberries are prepared in recipes they are usually enhanced by adding sweetness (either sugar or fat) and that sweetness amplifies the strawberry flavor. You can add some acidity and sweetness to them (e.g. balsamic vinegar) but there is a small range of sweet-sour where it really works. Raspberries, on the other hand, are usually the acid component in a dish. You can also add some sugar to raspberries, often to balance the acidity, but when you add too much you lose the raspberry flavor and end up with that generic mixed berry flavor.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Trading is legal?
« on: September 12, 2015, 07:32:57 AM »
Every winter, without ever being asked, my neighbor plows my road for me. I give him a jug of his favorite whiskey. I guess that could be construed as illegal even though there is no agreement between us to do this. I figure he paid tax when he bought the tractor and fuel and I paid taxes when I bought the R&R, and every year the property taxes. The only thing not getting taxed is our friendship and time.

There are a number of things that are technically against a law or regulation. In my opinion, if they occur on your private property and no one is harmed or complains (meaning that no one knows or care) then... who cares?

There is also a significant difference between bartering with an express agreement and two people gratuitously gifting a good or service to each other. Otherwise Christmas would be, well Christmas for the IRS.

While I'm at it, I should clarify my earlier post. People trading homebrew to evaluate each other's beers is probably legal (so long as there are not other legal issues with the transportation or with the beer being consumed outside of the household as some states prohibit.) This is akin to submitting beer for a competition or organized tasting. This is different from trading in the sense discussed in the article in which the homebrewer is obtaining goods in exchange and both sides have given their goods a value in the exchange. The fact that it is an alcoholic beverage in the barter creates its own problem independent of the taxability of the barter transaction.

We know unreported bartering happens all the time. Most of us are just not stupid enough to let our friends openly expose it in publication.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Pulling Yeast
« on: September 11, 2015, 11:39:32 PM »
It's tastes too sweet but is it actually underattenuated by a gravity reading?

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Trading is legal?
« on: September 11, 2015, 11:37:35 PM »
It's definitely not legal under federal law. The Internal Revenue Code considers bartering for goods or services of value to be a taxable source of income. If beer is creating a taxable income then it is unlawful unless the person obtaining the income is properly licensed to manufacture beer for commercial purposes.

The lawyer in me says bartering with homebrew--or any bartering without reporting it as income for tax purposes--is a no-no. The non-lawyer part of me that thinks individuals bartering homemade goods and services for minimal value should not be taxable income would be happy to fill some tax-free growlers to have a neighbor mow the yard.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: It's Official
« on: September 11, 2015, 11:27:29 PM »
It's clunky and honestly half the reason why I don't use half the features in the software. I'm really just looking for it to do the math and save my recipes so I'm fine letting go of the other features. I use bru'n water for water adjustments and for calculating starters.

All Things Food / Re: Indian Food
« on: September 11, 2015, 11:20:41 PM »
Saying you want to cook Indian food is pretty much like saying you want to learn how to make European beer. Most of the Indian cuisine you find stateside is a mishmash of various parts of India. There's many different styles and techniques across the country. It's hard to find restaurants or cookbooks that are specific to regional specialization and when you do it's often Punjabi (which is delicious) or the British-safe versions served in touristy areas that are tempered and semi-bland. The other side of that coin is that most cookbooks will cater to that paradigm and provide recipes from around India and generally recipes for things you find in restaurants stateside.

The threshold test for a decent Indian cookbook is whether the ingredients listed are all available in your local chain supermarket outposts. Even your whole foods or whatever premium chain supermarkets you have won't carry all the ingredients you need. You will need a good local Indian grocer or liberal use of internet purchasing to stock your pantry for Indian food.

I'll recommend two books that I use that you should be able to buy. One is Indian Fast Food which is not the most exciting book but the recipes are simple, fairly quick to cook and are reasonably legitimate recipes. You might find this book at your local used bookstore. I went in a local Half Priced Books and found like five copies for like $6. It's a small book so it won't last long but it's a great introductory book. I still use my copy. Another great book is 50 Great Curries of India. I picked this up maybe six months ago from the clearance rack at B&N for like $10. It is just a great book. It's actually more than curries but the bulk is curries of all sorts. The recipes are involved and take time but they are solidly authentic. The author does a really good job of exploring various Indian regions and provides recipes out of regional cuisines you have probably never tried unless you happen to know people from that particular region and culture.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: the flavor of fruit in fruit beer
« on: September 11, 2015, 08:44:30 AM »
Fruit flavors in fruit are (generally) enhanced by the natural presence of sugar or acid. Fruit with sugar as an enhancer generally do not work well in beer because you're fermenting out the sugar and the fruit flavor gets lost. Acid rich fruit go the other direction because the acid stays in the beer. When you add those fruit to beer the acidity in the beer enhances the fruit flavor. Just think about the kinds of beer you commonly see with sour cherries and raspberries (sour/dry beers) and those beers with bananas or strawberries (backsweetened beers).

Apples are a weird fit there because they rely on both sugar and acidity and when you ferment out the sugar you keep that dry acidity that has a different apple flavor from fresh apple or backsweetened cider.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: It's Official
« on: September 11, 2015, 08:32:28 AM »
It says Derek is now a guest. What happened, he get banned?

Maybe he decided he really loved HBT after all and had to delete his account here as a penance.

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