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Messages - Jimmy K

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Kegging and Bottling / Re: cleaning bottles
« on: Today at 06:47:28 AM »
Get a Fastrack, Fastrack tray, and a container large enough to fit the Fastrack (and tall enough to cover the bottles).
1) Fill Fastrack with bottles, add tray and flip over (bottles upright).
2) Put into container, fill with cleaner.
3) Remove and flip to drain, rinse with sink spray nozzle and drain again.
4) Place back in container (bottles upright), fill with sanitizer.
5) Remove, drain upside down until ready to bottle.

Other Fermentables / Re: Bee Hive Honey Tap
« on: March 03, 2015, 06:33:56 PM »
I think the hive bodies would make great demonstration hives with the windows. But I worry that someone who isn't willing to open a hive to collect honey also won't open it to check on health. These days hive health cannot be left to chance.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Beer for Thought...
« on: March 03, 2015, 02:27:07 PM »

Absolutely take the high road. What I am saying is make the responsible agency cancel the homebrew comp via some sort of specific written documentation.  That plays much better in the media than a bunch of homebrewers deciding not to have it.  Besides do they "really" respect the law when it clearly says only "native grown products" can be used.   That seems pretty cut and dry...only Idaho hops, barley, yeast and water can be used. Pretty ridiculous

I just don't see the point in going that far until he tries a more conventional route.  You catch more flies with honey, ya know...
I wouldn't be combative about it, but as a regulatory agency it's their job to tell people if what they want to do complies with law. It basically IS the conventional route.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: When is a lager an ale
« on: March 03, 2015, 08:03:54 AM »
German lager yeast - sounds like a lager. My guess is it winds up in American Ale from a combination of it doesn't really fit any BJCP style well and the person designing it didn't care much about the 'style' and picked something that matched the color and abv. Not too concerned either way.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: When is a lager an ale
« on: March 03, 2015, 07:52:36 AM »
Instead of getting philosophical, how about a link to the recipe? I can't find it.

So I am probably in the minority here but.....what would happen if you went ahead with your competition plans as usual? 

Maybe a nice criminal record for all involved...
I know - on the one hand they might just send a letter telling you to cancel the competition. But if they found out the organizer knew they said it was illegal and went ahead with plans - who knows.
If you did choose to cancel, I'd send ABC a real written letter, tell them the history of the competition and ask them for permission to continue. Make them deny you in writing first. Like phundog said, 'ABC made us cancel' is a much better news story.

Thanks gentlemen.  i agree HobsonDrake it contradicts itself with that statement. Ill give them a shout.
25.206 is the section of Federal law that authorizes competitions. That is not state law.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: BJCP Tasting Exam....I Passed!
« on: February 26, 2015, 02:21:13 PM »
I got mostly master level completeness and descriptions, my feedback was between certified and national, but I fubard a couple scores (one too high, one too low as compared to the proctors) which ends up counting against you twice because those scores are going to be based on perceptions,  right?
Maybe - my last exam I had master level perceptions and apprentice level scoring one beer. I'm still wondering what went sideways there.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Berliner Weisse Question - Blend +Lacto?
« on: February 26, 2015, 02:18:40 PM »
It will help. I would pitch the lacto vial warm ~85F. Even keep it warm for a day if you can. Sample and add the blend when it's getting tart. (Let it cool before adding yeast)

Equipment and Software / Re: The Zymatic has landed!
« on: February 26, 2015, 02:11:09 PM »
What do you do when it becomes self-aware?
It creates its own recipes and gets offended if you don't like them.
Or it is overly self critical and a sad robot.
Did Denny name it Marvin?

Equipment and Software / Re: The Zymatic has landed!
« on: February 26, 2015, 11:24:30 AM »
What do you do when it becomes self-aware?

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: What kind of beer would these make
« on: February 26, 2015, 09:52:16 AM »
Not a bad experiment, but sometimes it just shows you why after thousands of years of trial and error S. cervesiae emerged as the nearly universal fermentation organism.

You stop listening halfway through many brewery tours and just read signs, record boards, and box labels.
Or you are muttering to yourself every time something is wrong and your wife gives you the "don't be that guy nudge".
Actually, I'm usually giving her that nudge. I'm pretty laissez faire and she is not.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: BJCP Tasting Exam....I Passed!
« on: February 26, 2015, 08:51:33 AM »
I find them helpful for what is allowed in the style, but not necessarily considered to be "required", as well as those aspects that are absent, because they are supposed to be absent.  Keeping all of that in my head is the problem.  You must be pretty good to work without the style guidelines.  I suppose iit comes with time, but when entering a beer and getting dinged for a characteristic that is perfectly permissible, one wishes that the judge read the style guidelines more carefully....just sayin.  Again, I am sitting for the taste exam in June, so maybe I will come away with a different perspective, but I doubt it.  I felt the same way about the bar exam when I took it and passed.  And still feel the same way about it.
They certainly are useful, but knowing the guidelines is a fairly small part of passing the new tasting exam. A passing score requires mostly accurate tasting skills, ability to describe what you perceive, and high quality brewing feedback.
Consider that the score is based on five areas, each worth 20% -
Perceptive Accuracy: How much does what you perceive match up to what the proctors and other examinees detected.
Descriptive Ability: How well do you describe your perceptions? Lots of adjectives, level descriptors, etc?
Feedback: Do you offer high quality brewing feedback that matches the errors you've noted.
Completeness: How complete is your scoresheet - all attributes addressed, checkboxes marked, etc.
Scoring: How does your overall score match the proctors?
Knowing the guidelines counts mostly with score and to an extent for feedback, but it has nothing to do with the other areas. The minimum Scoring score is 9 of 20 points, so guidelines affect 30% of your score at most. And even for feedback, if you detect diacetyl and give good recommendations to remove diacetyl. You'll probably get partial credit even if diacetyl is acceptable per style - because they want you to show that you know your stuff.
I'd also add that I got a 77 with a general understanding of beer styles. ie - I know what they should taste like but could not quote specific attributes. That memorization is much more important to get National scores - especially for the written exam.
There is also language in the draft 2014 (now 2015) guidelines that warns against getting too picky about specific style points. As Gordon Strong put it "You should be able to reward a good beer".
The other reality is that although many judges refer to guidelines during competition, there is no time to read them thoroughly. You must have a baseline understanding of the style going in. Even with time to read a full guideline - a judgement based solely on comparison to a written description is likely to be poor.

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