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Messages - dmtaylor

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I don't know if it's the search for some special new nugget as much as it is an unnecessary tribalism where one person's opinion or experience automatically raises to the level of broadly applied truth and then the tribe must march to destroy all dissent. Then there is a foul argument between the old guard and the new in which terrible arguments and ad hominem attacks prevail.

You should have been around 17 years ago when I started trying to convince people that batch sparging was a valid technique!

Denny Conn.... dispelling myths and getting crapped on because of it for 17 years....  :)

I started brewing in a bag before the term "BIAB" was invented as far as I know.  I also crushed all my malts in a blender for at least 4 years.  Fortunately I didn't show these processes to any friends at the time and thus received negligible backlash except from maybe one or two closed-minded numbskulls on the interwebs.  I still today would say that the blender works just fine.  Had I not received a mill as a gift I might still be using it today.  Would work especially well for a 1.7-gallon batch brewer like myself, as opposed to the 3 gallons I was brewing at the time.... might only take ~20 minutes to "crush" the grains instead of ~45 minutes.

 ??? :o  ;D  8)

Crystal 60 is good stuff, though I prefer Crystal 40.  But...

Peat smoked malt still sucks, unless maybe you only use 0.25-0.5 oz per 5 gallon batch.  Any more than that causes terrible oxidation and astringency and acetaldehyde.


General Homebrew Discussion / Re: 6 Common Homebrew Myths
« on: August 08, 2016, 10:26:38 AM »
So, mutatis mutandis i have to rehydrate my dry yeast or else it's yeast zombie time?

That one, it depends who you ask.  Folks seem to still be split about 50/50 on this one.  Personally I'm a sprinkler, I think I only rehydrated once in my life and for why I don't know.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: 6 Common Homebrew Myths
« on: August 08, 2016, 08:52:44 AM »
Nice to see these things all summed up in one place!  Nice job, man.

All Grain Brewing / Re: How do you BIAB?
« on: August 08, 2016, 05:38:27 AM »
I mash in a bag in my kettle on my stovetop with no insulation.  I keep one quart of water boiling on a side burner at the beginning of the mash in case my mash temperature falls too cold.  Usually it's right where I want it so this is rarely needed.  I allow loss of about 6 degrees F over the course of the mash so I purposely aim for 3 F high on my mash temperature so that it's in a good temperature range for the vast majority of the mash time (e.g., so if I want the mash temp at 150 F, I shoot for 153 F at the beginning, and if it falls to 147 F by the end, I don't care, as it really, really just doesn't matter!).  I usually only mash for 40-45 minutes anyway.  If too warm then I add small amounts of cold water a cup at a time to bring the temperature down.  Once it hits proper range, the burners are off of course but I just leave the mash sit on the warm stove and it doesn't lose as much heat that way.

While mashing I set up a bucket, large colander, and second set of one or two smaller pots on the side for sparging.  I heat water in the kettles to almost a boil (190-195 F) for sparging by the end of the mash.  Once the mash is done, I dump the hot water from the smaller pots into the bucket, then pull the grain bag from the mash and dunk it in the "sparge" water in the bucket.  This improves efficiency significantly and requires no squeezing of the bag.  Then after just a minute or two, pull the bag out again and set up top of the colander to drain.  I move the colander and bag over to one of the smaller pots to continue to drain the rest while combining the bucket "sparge" liquid and the main mash, then immediately bring that to the boil and brew as normal.  After a good 10-15 minutes, I dump the additional drainings from the colander into the boiling wort so nothing goes to waste.  If I forget then later I might freeze this wort to use as yeast starter wort later on.  Nothing is wasted.  This really improves efficiency.

With a really good crush and refusal to waste any wort, I have seen my average efficiency climb past >90% without trouble.  However these days I purposely don't crush as hard and my average efficiency is now 81-82% for every batch.  I have a theory (which I won't get into much here) that super-high efficiency weakens malt flavor, in the opposite manner that no-sparge / low-efficiency brewing improves malt flavor.  I am currently, finally, conducting an experiment that should support or refute this theory.  I just did two BIAB batches of Marzen, same recipe, but one sparged as normal and the other no-sparge, with efficiencies of 81% and 64%, on purpose.  Both are almost ready to lager with gelatin and then soon to bottle.  Now maybe I'll have some proof of my theory... or maybe not!  But I digress.  What's truly important is consistency.  If you can get your efficiency consistently to 65%, great.  75%, wonderful.  81%, heck, that's great too, I like it.  Do what you need to do to get consistent, so that you can actually brew what you want to brew.  That's the key.  But anyway.

Beer Recipes / Re: What to make with Kolsch Yeast
« on: August 07, 2016, 08:31:40 AM »
2565 works well in an IPA. Takes forever and a day to clear, but it's good.

I have done this and I agree.  Might make for a perfectly hazy east coast IPA actually.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Style guidelines
« on: August 07, 2016, 08:29:23 AM »
Neither set is more right than the other, and in some spots each is wrong by some ethereal standards.  These truly are just guidelines and may be treated as inputs but never as bibles.

Beer Recipes / Re: first saison
« on: August 06, 2016, 05:54:55 AM »
Yep.  Be careful not to declare victory quite yet.  I think this one is going to finish in the 0.990s which is not unheard of for a saison.

Total BS IMO.  Use whatever you like, but use it wisely.

+1.  Brewers just love to make stuff up, we do it all the time.  It makes life more interesting.  I'm serious too I think.

I wonder if they simply mean that the malt flavors themselves that come from C60 are more subject to being percieved as oxidized as the beer ages. I use a pretty big punch of English C60 in my old ale and I actually like the flavor of that malt as the beer ages a bit.

Now this might actually make a little bit of sense.  Maybe can be *mistaken* for oxidation even though it's really not any more or less oxidized than anything else.  That I can maybe see, maybe.

And in the following exbeeriment, they COULD taste the difference, although it wasn't clear at all what that difference actually was (vegetal or otherwise).  So, the jury's still out as far as I can tell.  Seems to me like there is likely some difference that has not yet been explained by science.

Also, in general, I would select a much higher p value of 0.15 or thereabouts.  p=0.05 is super convincing when the exbeeriment is under that, but.... p=0.10 or 0.15 is "good enough" in my opinion.  And in that case, a huge number of exBmts actually affirm whatever the p=0.05 says they do not.  How's that for silliness / wide-open to interpretation kind of stuff!

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Location of Grain Storage
« on: August 04, 2016, 07:41:39 AM »
If you're concerned, plan to mill and ferment in two different places, and you should be safe.  I think these rules of thumb apply more to commercial breweries anyway, or folks who crush hundreds or thousands of pounds of grain all the time, not homebrewers who wouldn't typically have pounds of malt dust clinging to the walls and ceilings and everything in the room.  I mill in my basement, which might not pass a white glove test but it's not SO horribly full of dust to where I'm afraid to take advantage of Wisconsin basement temperatures and ferment down there as well.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Red Ale
« on: August 04, 2016, 06:31:48 AM »
Thanks.  I failed to scroll down to the bottom.  I stand by my previous statement.  I really don't think you'll get any weird flavors, and in the off-chance that you do, they'll fade quickly.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Red Ale
« on: August 03, 2016, 06:04:30 PM »
What gives you the idea that there's lager yeast in there?  At least it doesn't say so on White Labs' website.  I guess I'm not part of the "in" crowd on that.

Even if true, I wouldn't think that should be a problem.  You're fermenting warm, right?  And there's plenty of yeast to eat the diacetyl.  If you do get some diacetyl down the road, condition in the 50s or 60s for 2-3 weeks and it will be gone.  But, I seriously, seriously doubt it would even happen.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Red Ale
« on: August 03, 2016, 04:03:26 PM »
It seems like it's got to be done already.  Wait 3 more days, check gravity and make sure it stays right at 1.008-1.009.  If so, it will be safe to bottle or keg.  If not, wait a couple days more then check again, and repeat until it is stable.  Then it's ready to roll.  There's no need at all to wait an arbitrary 14 days or whatever if it's done.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Red Ale
« on: August 03, 2016, 01:07:39 PM »
It's very hard to see from that picture but it appears the gravity is about 1.008-1.009.

Beer Travel / Re: Charleston SC for the weekend.....
« on: August 02, 2016, 10:09:31 AM »
Hey, I was just down there.  Palmetto makes great stuff, but it's all in bottles or tap, no location to visit.  Edmund's Oast is an absolute must see if you like Brett & sour beers at all.  I didn't get the chance to see Coast or Holy City but they were on my list, if only I'd had the time.  I was not at all impressed with Westbrook.

Happy travels!  :)

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