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Messages - phunhog

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Competition Scoresheet timeline.....
« on: January 29, 2015, 11:44:21 AM »
Scanning is a great idea as long the emails actually go out reasonably quick. My idea with the SASE is that it seems like comps are always short staffed with volunteers.  So anything that we as entrants can do to make it go smoother/easier we should do. I can't imagine sending a SASE with your entries would turn anyone off from a comp.  If that would be a deal breaker I can't imagine those brewers would bother to pack and ship their entries via UP$ ...... that is a PITA and expensive!

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: 2-step starters
« on: January 28, 2015, 09:57:10 PM »
a half gallon mason jar will only cost about 1.50 for what it's worth. you could get quite a few mason jars for the cost of a 5L flask
Does the mason jar work with a stir plate?

General Homebrew Discussion / Competition Scoresheet timeline.....
« on: January 28, 2015, 09:02:17 PM »
Since we are getting into the season for homebrewing competitions I have noticed a problem and potential solution.  Am I the only one frustrated with the amount of time it takes to receive scoresheets?  I guess it is fairly common to wait up to a month before getting your scoresheets?  Now I know the comps are run by a dedicated group of volunteers and I am not trying to place blame on anyone.  My solution would be very, very simple.  When you send in your beers include a self-addressed stamped envelope (SASE) for every beer entered that way as soon as the judges are done judging your beer the steward/organizer can stuff your scoresheets in the SASE and put them in the outgoing mailbox! Of course this assumes that the beer is not moving on to the second round/BOS.  But might actually get your scoresheets within a week's time, if not sooner!  Then when you sit down with the scoresheets and taste your beer you have a better chance of tasting the same beer the judges did. 

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Just say "no" to yeast rinsing
« on: January 25, 2015, 02:05:19 PM »
What about using chlorine dioxide tablets to kill/greatly reduce the numbers of bacteria in your yeast starter? I do this anytime I am stepping up an older starter to a pitchable quantity.  I agree that prevention is the best but......most of us are playing with yeast in less than perfect conditions.  Seems like cheap insurance.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: BSI Yeast Sample
« on: January 24, 2015, 09:45:02 AM »
Now that i the sample has been resting in the fridge I would say that it is approx 300-400 ml of thick yeast.  So I still think I can get by with 10 gallons of lager without a starter.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: BSI Yeast Sample
« on: January 23, 2015, 11:11:05 AM »
Nice. Is it the Augustener or one of the Abby strains.

Some say WLP-860 = Augustener.
WLP-835 Lagar X rhymes with Kloster Andechs.

The Ettal or Weltenberger would be interesting. When living in Germany I had some of the Weltenberger beers, and those are very malty.

It is the Ettal strain.  Kind of flying blind info on the yeast from BSI website.

Yeast and Fermentation / BSI Yeast Sample
« on: January 23, 2015, 09:22:25 AM »
I live down the street from a pro brewer who recently was given some free yeast samples from BSI.  He gave me one of his 1L sample packages.  Pretty stoked since it is a German lager strain that no one else(Wyeast/ White Labs) offers!  Does anyone know what the cell count might be in something like this?  Was going to brew 10gal of Dunkel and of course didn't want to underpitch.  My pro brewer buddy didn't think I would need a starter but he also had no idea what the cell count might be for the 1L sample?  I know White Labs vials contain approx 100 b cells per 35ml but I don't think I really want to extrapolate those numbers here. 

The Pub / Re: Jim Koch has a problem....
« on: January 06, 2015, 08:52:24 PM »
Personally I think he has a point....craft beer drinkers can be a bunch of pompous blow hards.  It's not enough to make a solid beer anymore. Sam Adams is mentioned multiple times in the BJCP style guidelines for a variety of beer styles.  If they made crappy beer I would hope the BJCP wouldn't include them as commercial examples.  That said I wouldn't go into a "craft beer bar" and expect to find Sam Adams just like I wouldn't go into some underground, indie record shop and find the latest U2 release.  Those types of businesses thrive on having the hard to find and unusual products....not something you can pick up just about anywhere.  But that alone is NOT a measure of quality.

All Grain Brewing / Re: 60 Minute mash?
« on: December 31, 2014, 08:18:34 PM »
I have thinking about shortening my mash times to 45 minutes. Using a refractometer I have noticed no significant increases in gravity past that time.  Plus by the time I run off my first runnings, fill up the MLT, and vorlauf the grain bed has been at mash temps for probably close to 75-80 minutes.  So why not not shorten the "official" mash time to 45 minutes?

Homebrew Clubs / Re: Homebrew Club Insurance Program Questions
« on: December 29, 2014, 11:43:54 AM »
Does anyone know if there is a minimum membership requirement?  My local club does not participate in this plan....wish they would but they don't/won't.  I would feel more comfortable if I had some sort of liability insurance when pouring beer at events.  I was thinking that I might have to form a homebrew club for the sole purpose of obtaining this liability insurance along with other members of my local homebrewing community.  Also does this insurance only cover you when you are pouring under the "umbrella" of a covered club? My intention isn't to steal away membership from the existing homebrew club.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash temperature and final gravity
« on: December 26, 2014, 09:04:23 PM »
Here's the reply I got from Mike.  The book he mentions is "Homebrewing: Beyond the Basics".

It's in my book, we also did a blind triangle tasting at the brewery when one of our beers finished at 1.020 instead of the usual 1.010 and nobody could pick it out. My theory is that long chain sugars from mashing high aren't perceived as being sweet (just taste some malto dextrin powder) or contributing body. On the other hand, residual simple sugars from an incomplete fermentation will taste cloyingly sweet.

Wow...that's pretty interesting. So what is the take away from this?  Should we be concerned about mash temps....or at least as much as we are?  What is more important is the fermentation process (oxygenation, temp control, healthy yeast, etc) so that a COMPLETE fermentation takes place? 

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: What is it with mass produce beer...
« on: December 24, 2014, 02:20:05 PM »
My personal experience is that too much is ...well too much ;) However it seems like hangovers from homebrew are much less severe.  I, like others, attribute this to most homebrews being unfiltered and thus containing brewers yeast.  There was a story from Jim Koch (Samuel Adams) earlier in the year about how he actually takes brewers yeast capsules before he drinks to avoid getting drunk/hungover.  I am sure it affects everyone differently but I think he might be on to something.

I have heard through the grapevine that they won't even allow "brewing demonstrations" at businesses??  I can totally see why they won't allow fermentations/sampling to take place.  If the LHBS can give out free samples why can't the barber, music shop, or hardware store?   I don't know how we are going to win that one.... :-[

The grape vine is frustratingly unclear in this case. Personally, I don't see any great benefit in fighting for sampling. I think it confuses the issue and puts what we really want in a very bad space by combining it with a service scenario that would really make a regulator's hair stand on in.

What I want to see clarified and allowed:
- homebrew club events at permanent licensees with reasonable restrictions
- homebrew demonstrations and lessons

Absolutely agree!!  The frustrating part for me is all the time,effort, and MONEY spent on this.  Just think that our legislators are spending precious resources on something as unimportant (in the big picture)as to whether or not to allow homebrew demonstrations/homebrew club events.  Or on the other side that the ABC is spending resources to investigate homebrew activities.  The truly scary part is that I am sure this is magnified 1000x when you consider all the other "special interests" that want some small law change.

I really think the ABC is over reaching here. Obviously wort doesn't contain alcohol until the introduction of yeast but I seriously wonder if the ABC even knows this.  Can somebody explain to me how they can regulate a product/activity that doesn't even contain alcohol?  I hope a LHBS stands up to them!!

No one has ever said the ABC will be fining/arresting folks for making wort, but for making beer. To me that means the shop can't do any fermentation on site since it's not home based. There are probably regulatory angles to consider given that most regulatory agencies take a dim view of trying to play semantics games.

Regardless of whatever we feel about the rhetoric or lines of interpretation being offered, the best course of action is to get things codified into the law so everyone has a clear picture of things that are less subject to the varying whims of all the involved parties.
I have heard through the grapevine that they won't even allow "brewing demonstrations" at businesses??  I can totally see why they won't allow fermentations/sampling to take place.  If the LHBS can give out free samples why can't the barber, music shop, or hardware store?   I don't know how we are going to win that one.... :-[

Homebrew Clubs / Re: Accepting Donations
« on: September 02, 2014, 10:42:13 PM »
Here in CA it is legal to donate beer to a charity event.  In the past the charities have sent out nice letters thanking us for the donation of beer and providing us with their tax i.d. number so that we can take a legal tax deduction. I always felt better about doing that than accepting a monetary donation from the charity we were helping.

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