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Messages - blatz

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The Pub / Re: Used to be good...
« on: August 10, 2010, 05:40:16 PM »
Redhook - ESB and Ballard Bitter (whatever the hell they call it now). 

back in the late 90s I used to drive all around town to find those two beers.  I can't even stomach the ESB anymore.

Maybe my tastes changed, but I also wonder if the recipe changed.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Wyeast 3944/never ending fermentation?
« on: August 10, 2010, 03:08:58 PM »
Hello all,

I brewed a Wit using w3944, made an appropiate starter, started ferm. at 64 degrees and it is still going after 10 days! 
The ferm. started slowly, was very gentle, I slowly warmed it up to 68 after a few days.  The ferm. was still kinda slow, so I have it warmed up to 72-73 and is going stronger now.  Two days back the gravity was 1.026... (O.G. 1.052)...I tasted it when I took the reading and no contamination is evident.
Has anybody else experienced this same ferm. profile? 
Just wondering if a prolonged fermentation period has any negative effects? 
How much longer will this go on?
Will check gravity again tomorrow to determine if I should dump this batch or wait it out.

3944 is notorious for being a slow fermentor.  I make wit a few times a year and its always the same story. 

You can find threads all over the net with your same dilemma, so its nothing you did wrong.

I generally expect a 3 week primary with this yeast. No negative side effects - its a wonderful end product. Just gotta be patient.

The Pub / Re: The Demise of TechTalk
« on: August 10, 2010, 08:31:46 AM »
fredek - welcome to the forum.  I can assure you from being part of this board since week 1, that the quote you referenced is an abberation and not the norm.  if you look through the threads, you'll see that this forum is by and large 'flame free' and the folks here are very knowledgeable and helpful, including the poster of that comment.  There are plenty of forums out there that are only for the thick skinned, but this one is fairly laid back and well moderated.

And not to defend, but I think that comment was in response to a 'flame comment' made on the TT about the members of the forum  ;) .  

Glad to see you on the board, and lets just move on from all this sixth grade stuff and get back to making good beer!


The Pub / Re: Howdy everybody!
« on: August 10, 2010, 08:09:51 AM »

Equipment and Software / Re: Grain mill setting
« on: August 09, 2010, 12:13:32 PM »
I'm a little more anal than some of my compadres above, so I like to 'know' where the gap is at. So i bought a feeler gauge and I check it every few brews to make sure its where I like it (.037").  I also shift the gap for a few specialty grains that are smaller and thus like to know when I've returned to my 'home' setting.

That said, you do need to fiddle around and find what works for you - the visual aspect of the crush and the resultant efficiency will guide you toward what works in your brewhouse. 

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Fermentation temperature
« on: August 09, 2010, 11:43:12 AM »
When a fermentation temperature is specified with a recipe, yeast type, etc, is the temperature the ambient temperature of the air around the vessel, or is it the desired temperature of the beer itself? I realize that when fermentation is slow the two should be about the same, but during vigorous activity, the beer could be several degrees higher than ambient. I am going to buy an electronic control for a freezer conversion and need to know whether the temp sensor should just be dangled into the chamber, or should I tape it to the container, or even sanitize and submerge? Thanks for your input.

the recommended temp is the wort temp and not the ambient temp, for exactly the reason that you have cited.  

Personally, I have my sensor secured to the side of the fermentor.  I have run a dual test before, using both a thermowell w/ thermocouple and thermocouple secured to the side wall of my conical, and found the difference to be less than 1 degree ( I measured every day after work for the first 7 days of primary) so I decided to return the thermowell to my buddy and keep to putting the sensor my little velcro pouch on the cone of my vessel and save the money for something more useful  ;)

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Keggerator Anchor!
« on: August 09, 2010, 11:37:05 AM »
That's the one - thanks!!

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Keggerator Anchor!
« on: August 09, 2010, 07:41:26 AM »
you can look into building a flow gate which will allow you to use a standard length for all carbonation levels and have perfect pours. 

I have three of them and even hefeweiss pours just right.

I know one of the brew clubs out there has a 'how to' on the flow gate - will have to do some digging to find it.

Beer Recipes / Re: Oktoberfest!
« on: August 08, 2010, 12:20:34 PM »
witsok - so where's the invitation???  ;D

Classifieds / Re: ISO Ventmatic Ultra-Flo Faucet
« on: August 07, 2010, 10:11:24 AM »
Matt - I know what you mean about wanting to match - i'm completely the same way.

but...the perlicks look identical, IMO:

I have  3 ventmatics and am looking to expand in the future - i'll be grabbing these I'm sure.

Commercial Beer Reviews / Re: Sam Adams Octoberfest
« on: August 07, 2010, 07:06:17 AM »
I'm sure that there will be a few new American made O-Fests popping up this year, and I'll definitely give them a try.  I hope I find a winner...It's one of my favorite lager styles.

prof - Left Hand and Gordon Biersch are pretty good American versions. Left Hand was best 2 years ago - last year's was good but not as spot on.

I agree SA Fest isn't meh - its not too bad, and I'll probably drink at least a six packs worth before the season is over (but after its actually begun  ;) ) its one of SA's better products, IMO.  I just get too much of a caramelly thing going on rather than a toasty malt flavor and the latter, to me, is one of my favorite facets of the style.  I love vienna malt.

Just because I cant pick up 5 gallons of wort doesnt mean I cant brew ............... right?

Experimentals here I come :D

Denny, thanks for the kind words. I HAVE TO get well soon, got a Homebrew Jamboree in one months time ;)

Jeff - don't you have kids? Have they done enough this week to earn their allowance? I think not  ;)

Get well soon.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Ok to move to secondary?
« on: August 06, 2010, 02:12:44 PM »
Secondaries cause more harm than good.  I don't do secondaries anymore.  Even with my lagers, I just leave them sit in primary for a couple months, with no ill effects.  The beer will finish and clear perfectly fine in the primary.  Otherwise, it's literally like ripping the carpet out from under the yeasty beasties, and they occasionally get confused and stop eating off-flavors such as diacetyl and acetaldehyde.  Might as well leave them alone and let them do what they want.  That's my opinion.

+1 - my sentiments exactly, though I do still secondary anything over say 1.080 for the whole 'bulk aging" thing.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: bottling barleywine
« on: August 06, 2010, 12:00:59 PM »
the abv supports it being 1.180

18+% with a 1.118 would be a fairly dry beer
It would if it was correct.

How do you know your alcohol %? You don't measure it directly do you?

I bet he calculated it from 1.180, but the real o.g. was 1.118.


you need to chew through 137 gravity points to get ~18% abv.

looks like his calcs are pretty close to me. 

Kegging and Bottling / Re: bottling barleywine
« on: August 06, 2010, 11:38:57 AM »
I've learned from trial and error to keg and force carb as Fred has indicated...then use my Blichmann beer gun to bottle the big beers. Reyeasting is hit or miss.

wished I had seen this a few months ago.  After a couple of years of using the beer gun, I went back to try bottle conditioning my Bigs again.  Not too happy with it so far.

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