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Messages - dmtaylor

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Ingredients / Re: Hop addition time for maximum flavor?
« on: January 01, 2017, 06:24:01 PM »
Question about hop utilization, as I've seen varied data: what time during the boil utilizes the most flavor, forgetting bitterness and aroma. I've seen at the 10 minute addition, and I've seen 20. Anyone have any insight/data/experience with this?

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Another vote for flameout / whirlpool.  Flavor and aroma are really one and the same thing.  In effect your nasal passage sniffs the beer as it slides down your throat.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Diacetyl rest left too late?
« on: January 01, 2017, 09:14:59 AM »
It will still clean up fine in my experience.  You did the right thing warming it up.  65 F is a good conditioning temperature to clean up sulfur and diacetyl.  Keep it there for as long as it takes (a week? not sure), then you can bottle or keg right away, or lager in the fermenter, at your option.

If arguing was allowed and I cared to argue about beer, I could easily instigate a plethora of verbal brawls and subsequent smack downs in this thread.  Many people are very wrong about beer and they are feeling artificially confident about expressing their clearly false opinions because they have been granted a safe space to speak their opinions without fear of rebuttal.

"very wrong"... says who?  Taste is subjective, there is no right or wrong.

"artificially confident"... there might be some of this.

"clearly false opinions"... no such thing.  An opinion is an opinion, and equates neither to a fact nor a falsehood.

I do think arguing should be allowed, as long as it doesn't become mega-annoying or nasty.

I like to listen to extremely complex progressive rock/metal when I brew. It's a method to make the final beer undeniably better.

Dream Theater?  Steve Hackett?

Entering competitions is a waste of time and money. Everyone complains that the feedback is inconsistent and incomplete at best and flat out no good at worse so the "I enter for the feedback" argument doesn't fly.
The rest of competitions seems to be slavishly adhering to style and gaming the system. Then it's just luck to see if those godawful pretentious beer judges like your beer better than others today. I am not paying to send them my hard earned home brew thank you very much!

While I do think it is still advantageous to become a judge for numerous reasons I won't mention here, I do also totally agree with your statements above, and I have been fairly vocal about this, much to the chagrin of many Master judges.  And it's a damned shame, because at the same time, I also truly believe that quality wasn't always so bad.  Only in the past 6-7 years has quality of our judges really tanked.  Feedback from comps was way more beneficial in the early 2000s.  The average judge today I think hasn't much clue what they are really doing, and this goes mostly for the Recognized and Certified judges, with a few Nationals as well unfortunately.  Many of the Nationals and Masters I think still know their stuff, but fewer of the Certifieds, and the Recognizeds? good luck.  Why is this happening?  There is bloat involved -- too many judges and WAY too many "styles" for them to learn and try to interpret, many of which they've probably never tasted before.  That I feel is the biggie -- bloat of all kinds.  Plus I wonder if the online exam for newbies is either too easy or if people are cheating while taking it, I don't know which, probably some of both, and I've never taken the electronic exam.  I'm one of the "legacy" guys from about 2006/2007 who basically had to take the Master level essay exam just to get in as Recognized.  Ah, yes, those were the days.... :)  So, yeah, I don't enter comps anymore either, or extremely rarely, as I find them so very much crapshooty.  I find that I judge my own beers WAY better all by myself in most instances, with minimal bias up or down (actually it goes both directions for me).

I don't like 95 percent of the homebrews I taste. And I can't lie. So I either say it as it is or I stammer something meaningless.

Wow, that's pretty bad.  So, either you have terrible brewer friends, or you're super picky, or a super-taster.  Of these, I find that I am super picky in some regards (e.g., Marzen) but not others, such that I can enjoy more things.  It might also be helpful that I am apparently either a sub-average taster or a so-called "non-taster".  As such, I think a lot of my homebrewer friends make really fantastic beers, with IT and the whole she-bang.  My "friends" say "give it to Mikey, he likes it, hey Mikey", referring to me as the Mikey.  On the other hand, I am hyper-critical of my own beers.  I think I truly kind of suck at brewing.  But it doesn't keep me from trying!  Except for 2-3 years a while back when I'd brewed a string of rotten beers, I did get fed up for a while.  But anyway.............

Good thread. Here are a few more.

Most expertise on brewing forums is regurgitated on the fly from Google and not based on experience. (This forum much better than others in this regard)

Sparging is usually pointless.

Heavy dry hopping can ruin beer and introduce off flavours.

Flavour and aroma are the same thing.

Subtle flavours can be more enjoyable than overpowering flavours.

Belgian beers excepted, most beers should be under 5℅ alcohol.

Many homebrewers drink unhealthy amounts of alcohol and brew too strong. Check out the most popular recipes on HBT for evidence - they are nearly all >6%.

Fizzy yellow lager is good.

All clone recipes are rubbish.

Excellent list, Charles.  I totally agree that experience is way better than Google, and so on down the list, with one exception:

While I do think a lot of clone recipes are rubbish because they are poorly put together, researched, etc., I do find that there is great benefit in learning brewing skills if one attempts to clone a commercial beer and then brews several more times with tweaks until he/she gets it just right.  I find that cloning a beer is indeed possible, with sufficient artistic knowledge and skill.  Is it easier just to buy the stuff?  Well yes of course, unless the beer isn't being made or sold anymore, such as Pete's Wicked Ale or whatever.  Even if it's not identical, at least you can get a recipe somewhere close if you crave it.

I started out homebrewing (this edition) believing I was a lager only guy, but I've fallen in love with saisons.  Is this an "unpopular" brewing opinion?  ???

Saison is everywhere.  Your opinion is quite popular.

I'll throw these out there.

"Beer connoisseurs" that can't find the simple elegance of and skill involved to create a well made Pilsner, Helles, or even -- I'll say it -- an American Lager, haven't been tasting/making beer long enough.  This is why I never bother with the beer ratings sites.

Similarly, my favorite categories to judge are CAT 1 and CAT 2. (Light Lagers and Pilsners).
1) Only the very best brewers and the most naive ones enter them.  This makes judging them either a joy to drink or a quick list of obvious flaws.  Few are in the middle.  Makes judging them pretty quick and usually easy.
2) Nobody else wants to judge them, so I don't have to beg like the 30 guys trying to get the Sours or Strong Belgians.
3) You aren't hammered by lunch

Unpopular opinions, eh?  I'm hip...

I am a malt-head (as opposed to a hophead).  I like IPA just fine, but what I really love is all the lagers, Scottish ales, etc.

I can taste a nasty twang in your extract beer every time.  If you must use extract, then partial mash is way better, and all-grain is best.

I don't think rye tastes spicy, not in the slightest.  It's bready and a bit earthy, but no spice.  Any spice is associated with caraway or choice of spicy hops.

Carapils is worthless.  I've been saying this looooooooooooooong before the existence of the recent xBmt.

American commercial breweries just really don't know how to make good Marzens, or don't care.  I think I might be done tasting American versions, life is too short and it just doesn't pay.

Almost every gose on the market is way too effing salty to be enjoyable.  If you can taste the salt, you did it wrong.

Session IPA, Black IPA, Brown IPA, and Purple IPA are all terms that need not exist.

Homegrown hops are better for bittering than for flavor or aroma.  Learn what your average alpha acid is through trial and error, like in the old days before the term "alpha acid" existed.   :o

You don't need to rehydrate your dry yeast.  It's one of the big advantages of dry.  I know Denny agrees, but many do not, that's why I include this as an "unpopular" opinion.

Glass fermenters are better than plastic buckets.  There, I said it, again.  Glass is dangerous, yes.  Do be very careful with your big heavy glass carboys.  Fortunately, stainless would also be fine.

If you value your time and just want to get your brew day over with, then you are wasting a lot of time if you mash any longer than 40 minutes, and probably about the same for boil time as well.  Could save some energy costs there too.

Step mashes are probably worthless.  More experiments are a good idea but I'll probably not bother.  When in doubt, just mash at 150 F for 40 minutes.  You'll get very good beer with this mash "schedule".  And...

If the temperature falls a few degrees during the mash, who cares.  It'll be fine.  I don't insulate.

It might not be worthwhile to chase high efficiency >85%.  I finally ran one blind triangle efficiency experiment but need to run more as the results still were not very clear.

I only brew 1.7 gallons typically.  There are numerous advantages to doing so.  5 gallons is too much for many people.  I also brew on the stovetop, never did anything else and don't own a propane burner.  I am ridiculed endlessly by my "friends" for being "the small batch on the stove guy".  Whatever.  Do what you like.

And... that about does it, for right now.   ;D

Beer Recipes / Re: Experimental SMaSH Rye malt and Willamette RESULTS
« on: December 27, 2016, 11:56:58 AM »
Looks gloopy, as expected!  Glad you like it.  :)

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Expiration Date Dry Yeast
« on: December 20, 2016, 09:38:29 AM »
They last way longer than anyone will tell you.  4% per year might be about right.  Any loss "per month" is bull in my experience, unless perhaps measured in tenths of a percent.

Ingredients / Re: Sorachi Ace
« on: December 20, 2016, 07:43:43 AM »
I like it.  I made a Sorachi Ace IPA last year.  Very tasty.  Unfortunately it scored poorly in competition compared to my Columbus IPA.  Sorachi is a very love/hate hop, and super powerful.  Yes.  Use it sparingly if you don't want to offend the easily offended.

Other Fermentables / Re: First cider attempt questions
« on: December 13, 2016, 09:51:19 PM »
Your plan will work.

Ferment cool and slow, 2-3 months minimum, and 6 months would be better.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: D bomb
« on: December 12, 2016, 02:48:33 PM »
Could be the cold crash.  Also consider whether you might be underpitching... maybe need 2 or 2.5 liters depending how much you're brewing and how big the beer is.  Assuming like 1.060 and 5 gallons and yeast is a few months old, you might need up to a full gallon of starter according to!  I can't say I agree, but you might want to try a full 2-2.5 liters like I suggest.

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