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Messages - The Professor

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1
Kegging and Bottling / Re: Anxiety of Kegging
« on: April 22, 2015, 07:56:02 AM »
Rule #1: The beer in the keg will always achieve the perfect balance of flavor, carbonation, and clarity about 2 or 3 pints before it blows.  ;)  RDWHAHB and build up an inventory.

I learned that very thing 25 years ago and ramped up my brewing so that I now always have a few cornies on hand that have had at least 8 to 10 weeks of quiet  rest (and a lot longer for my IPA and Burton). 
A little diligence and a lot of patience result in tasty rewards.

2
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: 37 years
« on: March 21, 2015, 05:54:46 PM »
Happy Anniversary & congrats!
Time sure does fly when you're having fun!  ;)

3
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Sourdough Bread - Wild Yeast
« on: March 17, 2015, 10:01:15 PM »
...I know some homebrewers are very paranoid about keeping sourdough starter and brewing beer in the same house.  Many people have warned me not to do it!... 

I can't imagine why!  I've been brewing for 44 years and maintaining a sourdough culture for 35 years...even occasionally brewing and baking the same day (while having kimchee for lunch.  LOL).  It has never caused a problem.
Whoever warned against it either had problems which arose from sloppy handling, or perhaps they were overly paranoid.

4
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Delaying pitching
« on: March 07, 2015, 08:39:40 AM »
About how long after I've put the beer in the fermentor can I wait to pitch my yeast?

Forgot to make a starter last night, but still need to get the brew done today.
Sooner is definitely better, but a few times (due to either bad planning or an impulsive need to brew)  I've waited as long as 18 hours, with no ill effects whatsoever.  Good sanitation is always key...but especially so in instances like this.

5
Commercial Beer Reviews / Re: Sierra Nevada HopHunter
« on: March 07, 2015, 08:28:06 AM »
IMO, it's tough to find lower ABV IPA's that fit what I'm looking for.
Yes. I'm an All Day IPA hater because I think the high hops with absolutely no malt flavor is just awful. For me the name is ironic because despite wanting to like it I just didn't want a second.

So true.  A good IPA should have a solid (but not overdone)  malt backbone (actually, a proper IPA should also be aged for a good length of time, but that's for another thread...and besides, everyone is damned tired of my old rant on that issue   :P  ).

For freshness freaks (the ones who will look at the date and say "...yes, but what time was it brewed??"), I'd say that based on my experience with aromatic distilled hop-oil brews, this one should retain a very good hop profile over time.
I haven't seen Hop Hunter around NJ yet, but am quite anxious to give it a try.  I'll generally take anything Sierra Nevada makes over all of  the mostly lackluster beers brewed in my home state to begin with...but this one especially has good potential as a "winner".

6
Beer Travel / Re: Newport Hofbrauhaus
« on: March 02, 2015, 07:28:48 PM »
So I'm here. I missed the Braun beer as they tapped the doppelbock on Wednesday,  but I am stuck with tiny little half liter glasses as they won't serve the 8% doppelbock in full liters! I know I read in here somewhere that in Munich, the half litres are only for women and children. I guess they did not hear that here

Well, a half-liter is a bit more than a pint...so for an 8% brew, I'd say that's a fairly healthy serving.   It'll 'get you there'   ;)
Hell...my 'local' won't serve any hi-test brew in anything larger than an 8 oz serving in a wine glass.

7
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: When is a lager an ale
« on: March 02, 2015, 01:57:39 PM »
A lager is an ale if it is brewed to taste like one.  And vice versa.  In the end it's all about the flavor profile regardless of how it is made.
Ballantine was justly famous for their ales, but during the time when they were the third largest brewer in the USA, they also produced a best selling lager beer...which was actually fermented with a specially selected ale yeast.

8
Ingredients / Re: Light pale ale by extract.
« on: February 16, 2015, 12:37:46 PM »
Both something really drinkable especially during a hot summer

Personally, for a summertime beer designed to drink practically frozen in the hot weather, I'd shoot for somewhere between OG 1.036-1.040...still plenty flavorful and very refreshing, but with a bit less alcohol to bog you down so you don't get trashed if you have more than 2 or 3.
But, that's just me...

9
Beer Recipes / Re: Ballantine IPA Clone Recipe
« on: February 05, 2015, 10:36:02 AM »
Ballantine IPA was a 6-row based beer.  Imported malt is going to give the beer a different malt profile.

Not in my experience...it all depends how you treat it.
in the 30+ years I've been brewing a BIPA clone, I've freely substituted the 6 Row with  a variety of imported pale ale malts depending upon what was available to me.   Any differences have been very subtle (if noticeable at all).  Around 20 years ago I even started adding in a bit of imported Munich malt as well;  it actually wasn't until I did so that I finally hit upon the taste I was looking for, remembering the boatloads of the original Newark brewed Bally IPA I was consuming in my youth  (even though it's fairly certain that the original never used any Munich malt, in my setup and my procedures it proved to be the missing link in the taste). 
Clusters and Bullion (or Brewer's Gold) are, of course,  definite musts in recreating the original.  The recent revival of the product, while quite good, fails somewhat  in the 'hop character' department by using different varieties, some of which introduce citrus notes that shouldn't be there.

Also...if you want to get closer to the yeast used in the original, don't use 1056, US04, or any of the variants of that strain:  instead, use Bry97 or ECY "Old Newark Ale".

10
......or if you stop buying past-their-prime IPAs at the liquor store because you know you can brew better and fresher at home.

...or better yet, you practically stop buying beer altogether because you know you can brew better (and more economically)  at home.

11
Commercial Beer Reviews / Re: Guinness mixer pack
« on: January 16, 2015, 08:07:31 PM »
If you see this grab one. 8 pretty darn tasty beers. I'm working on a can of Guiness generous ale "Arthurs Holiday Ale" which I would say is quite a bit like a Landlord or London Pride, in that realm. Good stuff.

The Kilkenny nitro irish cream red was.... good.... different... interesting
Definitely will be on the lookout for this...been hearing good things about the mixer pack.

I'm still a Guinness fan...their stout is still on the ever-shrinking list of store bought beers I occasionally purchase.  I'm actually enjoying a bottle of the Foreign Extra as I'm reading the forums tonite. Really great stuff.
To me, it defines stout.

12
All Grain Brewing / Re: How well do you clean your mash tun?
« on: January 15, 2015, 05:36:48 PM »
I hose it out after use and let it air dry.  Once every 3-5 years, I fill it with hot Oxiclean, whether it needs it or not!  ;)

Pretty much the same here.  Hot water rinse and then letting it air dry seems sufficient.

13
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: pilsner ale yeast
« on: January 09, 2015, 03:55:57 PM »
I'd use the so called "Chico" (WY1056, etc)...
Word has it that it's descended from the strain that the late, great Ballantine brewery in Nj apparently used for their "lager" beer (they used a different ale strain for their ales).  It's very well known that 1056/Chico is a very 'clean' ale yeast that makes very convincing bastard lagers.

Kind of ironic, really.  Nowadays, the Ballantine XXX Ale that Miller contract brews for Pabst uses a lager strain.  LOL.

14
Ingredients / Re: Distilled Fresh Hop Oil
« on: January 02, 2015, 07:35:29 PM »
Sounds awesome!
This is a brew I can't wait to try.

15
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Just say "no" to yeast rinsing
« on: December 16, 2014, 09:34:29 AM »
So the mason jar of Pacman stored under a beer layer that's been in my fridge for 4 months may not be good? 

Or it may be fine.  Make a starter and find out.

Right.
As a very wise philosopher once said:  "You'll never know until you check it out..."

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