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Messages - dmtaylor

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Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Wyeast 1056 vs White Labs WLP 001
« on: February 19, 2015, 03:30:58 PM »
With any yeast strains that are so-called equivalent, there will always be differences since the yeast evolves over time.  Now, the differences could be very slight, or very significant.  In this case, the three strains are all similar enough that most people don't care too much.  Personally I like US-05 which I believe is the most attenuative of the bunch, close to 80% with the others more around mid-70s for attenuation (all roughly on the average and recipe-dependent, of course).

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Barons Priming Sugar
« on: February 16, 2015, 08:26:00 PM »
Maybe it's not priming sugar.  Maybe it's intended to be part of the fermentation.  Ever heard the term "kit & kilo"?  Not exactly a kilo here but a little something.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash Temp/Thickness Taste Perception
« on: February 16, 2015, 02:21:09 PM »
I am the cheapest homebrewer on the planet Earth.  I still have the same thermometer and hydrometer from 1999 that I use on every batch.  I still have my original fermentation bucket, although now it is used for milling the grain or other non-fermentation uses.  I do not own a chiller or a pump or fermentation fridge or kegging equipment or anything else costing more than a grain mill.  I did not buy my grain mill, I received it as a gift.  My kettle is the original as well, only 4 gallons.  The list goes on.

 :o 8)

All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash Temp/Thickness Taste Perception
« on: February 16, 2015, 02:10:56 PM »
I have my good old big fat alcohol thermometer that came with my starters kit in 1999.  Stick into the mash in one spot, leave it there for 20 seconds, take the reading, move to another spot, wait 20 seconds, etc.  I'm kind of a dork but hey, it works.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash Temp/Thickness Taste Perception
« on: February 16, 2015, 02:07:38 PM »
It takes a good 5 to 10 minutes for temperatures to even out in the mash tun after the strike.  That's what I'm talking about.  If you see mostly hot spots in those first couple of minutes, then worry a little bit.  If you see a lot of hot spots after about 5 minutes, then worry more.  After 10 minutes, worry a lot.

Also I don't like ice.  It takes time for ice to melt.  I prefer to just add cold water, if available.  Faster reaction time I believe.  It doesn't take much.  Never much more than 2 cups, maybe a quart at most to bring temperature down by like 10 degrees or more.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash Temp/Thickness Taste Perception
« on: February 16, 2015, 01:56:30 PM »
The only time I worry is when I accidentally strike the mash too hot in the 160s.  If you go way too hot in the 170s then you need to take care of this right away or you'll kill the alpha as well as the beta.  Either way, fortunately it takes a while to kill all your enzymes, so if you add 2 cups cold water and stir into the mash within a few minutes of the strike, you're fine.  If I want to mash at about 150 F but hit 157-158 F, I don't worry too much.  Sometimes I add cold water, but sometimes I'll just stir a lot and leave the lid off the mash tun for a while and let the temp fall over the course of the mash to get those beta enzymes working again.  They don't all get denatured too quickly as far as I can tell.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash Temp/Thickness Taste Perception
« on: February 16, 2015, 01:00:56 PM »
Oops, I used the wrong word.  Less fermentable at higher temps, you are correct.  I'm not confused, just spit out the wrong word at the wrong time on accident.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash Temp/Thickness Taste Perception
« on: February 16, 2015, 12:49:37 PM »
Theoretically, the beta amylase enzyme becomes more denatured with higher temperatures, so the wort is [EDIT: "less"] fermentable.  However, small temperature differences of a couple of degrees probably don't matter too much.  It should become more noticeable at say 6 or 8 degrees difference, e.g., the difference between mashing at 148 F versus 156 F might be noticeable.  Maybe.

More experiments are necessary to confirm real life results.

Another thing to keep in mind is that the malts we have today are way better modified and have way more enzymes than the same malts produced just ~15 years ago or more.  High tech kind of stuff.  Our maltsters are getting better and better everyday.  So, what was very significant 50 years ago might not actually be significant at all anymore.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash Temp/Thickness Taste Perception
« on: February 16, 2015, 10:49:29 AM »
Very very very difficult, if not impossible.  We love to talk about these variables as if we understand them, when in truth, we really do not.  Hopefully Denny will chime in as I know he's had a lot of experience recently with experiments in this area.....

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Should I refrigerate dry yeast
« on: February 15, 2015, 05:32:32 AM »
Dry yeast is fully dormant and will last for years either way.  It really does not matter at all.  That being said I do refrigerate mine just in case.

Ingredients / Re: English Crystal Malts Mistaken for Diacetyl?
« on: February 14, 2015, 05:59:08 PM »
a judge should know the difference.


aren't flights usually assigned to a pair of judges?

Often times, if the higher ranking judge detects something, even falsely, the lower ranking judge/unranked volunteer cannot resist the urge to copy the higher judge.

Ladies and gents, when you judge, please do NOT do this!!!  Only write stuff if you know for certain what you are tasting!  If you aren't sure if there's diacetyl or whatever else, please, at the very least, follow it with a question mark, e.g., "I taste toffee... could this be diacetyl?"  In my view, there's no shame in admitting uncertainty if you're not certain.  We're all learning.  Even the Grand Masters can learn from Recognized rank judges (though they might never admit it!).

I once entered a Dort as an ESB because it was too dark for some reason..... and it placed!  Yes, I too was shocked.

Yeah, sometimes if you're not sure which style to enter, you can and should enter both styles to see how it scores in each.  Also something to keep in mind, if it seems like it's just a little bit too strong for the style, then that's exactly where you want to enter it.  On the other hand, if it seems like it's just a little too weak for a style, then you probably do NOT want to enter it there.  It's all part of playing the competition game.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Batch Sparge holding time
« on: February 12, 2015, 03:27:16 PM »
That should work just fine.  You're just not able to mashout if you use cool water.... and that's okay because mashout is typically pointless in a homebrew setting anyway since you can quickly get up to a boil in a matter of minutes.  We're usually not leaving sweet wort sitting around for hours while we stoke the fire to get 'er up to a boil.

Ingredients / Re: English Crystal Malts Mistaken for Diacetyl?
« on: February 12, 2015, 03:25:15 PM »
It's the yeast eating the diacetyl.  If you filtered or fined the beer with gelatin, the effectiveness of higher temperature will be reduced or eliminated.

If you did not filter or fine with gel, then yes, there is enough yeast to get the job done.  Typically takes 3-4 weeks, maybe sometimes a little longer.

If there's a buttload of diacetyl, they won't be able to eat it all.  This only works if the effect is "mild to moderate".

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