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Messages - ajk

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: diacetyl in lagers
« on: January 28, 2016, 07:56:14 PM »
Supposedly, palates vary wildly in ability to taste diacetyl. I've met many a judge who say they can't perceive it. You could be in that camp.

As far as fixing it, simply sprinkling US-05 directly onto the beer works better for me than kräusening. I'm not sure why.

Brett usually takes a while to get going, so it's unlikely it was introduced during the gravity check. It probably happened around the time it went into the fermentor. Could be an infected starter or unsanitary equipment between the kettle and the fermentor. I suggest thoroughly cleaning your cold-side equipment and using a sanitizer you don't normally use (e.g., Iodophor instead of StarSan) before your next batch.

All Grain Brewing / Re: astringent off flavor
« on: January 05, 2016, 04:59:36 AM »
Indy574, if you live in central Indiana as your name suggests, try using 70 to 100% filtered tap water for your dark beers, and make up the balance with RO. The alkalinity we get for free in our Indiana water balances the acidity from the dark grains.

Using 100% RO and adding salts to raise the alkalinity is also a valid approach, as is steeping the dark grains after the mash. But I find it easier just to blend in some tap water.

Equipment and Software / Re: Fermentation Heaters...
« on: December 08, 2015, 08:05:25 PM »
I just use a 40-W light bulb in an old lamp socket. It's what I had on hand at the time, and I've never had a need to upgrade it.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: how to "improve" "finished" beer?
« on: December 07, 2015, 01:12:14 PM »
I've reduced diacetyl and acetaldehyde (on separate occasions) to acceptable levels in finished beer by pitching US-05 and letting it do its things for a few days.

All Things Food / Kimchi
« on: November 18, 2015, 04:06:28 PM »
I'm making kimchi (using this recipe) and am having trouble coming to terms with the idea of leaving something with shrimp in it out on the counter to ferment. I assume the salt and lactic acid keep the pathogens from growing?

All Grain Brewing / Re: toasted oatmeal stout
« on: November 17, 2015, 04:14:03 AM »
I have to toast oats for a good 45 minutes before I get appreciable flavor contribution that carries through to the finished beer. Hold back some raw oats so you can observe the color change. Toasting oats creates a lot of airborne dust; I can only do it when the family is out of the house.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Water Treatment for Export Stou
« on: November 16, 2015, 03:43:13 AM »
The acidity contributed by the dark grains most likely will result in a low mash pH and lead to harsh, acrid flavors. I usually target a pH of 5.6 for stouts to get a smooth, rounded flavor profile. I think Martin recommends pickling lime for this purpose rather than baking soda, but I forget the water chemistry reasons behind it.

Another approach is to hold off adding the dark grains until the sparge. That way they don't affect the mash pH, but you still get the roasts aromas and flavors.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Induction cooktop for wort boiling
« on: November 14, 2015, 06:59:29 AM »
Low-cost induction pots can be found. It doesn't necessarily have to claim to be induction capable. If a magnet sticks to it (firmly), it will work with induction.

I don't know what's the most powerful stove available. Mine is 3600 W and works great with an 8-gallon kettle full of wort.

Ingredients / Re: Oats
« on: October 29, 2015, 02:59:12 AM »
I use rolled oats (the Quaker kind, not quick oats), and if they're for a stout, I toast them in the oven for 45 minutes. I only do the toasting when no one's home because it releases a lot of dust that is unpleasant to breathe.

Ingredients / Re: specialty malts for brown ale
« on: October 28, 2015, 02:59:56 AM »
I agree molasses should be used only with a light touch if at all. I've tasted many brown ales I didn't want to finish because of the molasses. I'm a fan of Lyle's Black Treacle and brown malt.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Venting the boil
« on: October 28, 2015, 02:57:16 AM »
I vent out the wall of my basement using a rectangular duct. See this post for photos and other info:

What is the shelf life of peracetic acid? Could I keep a keg of it around the way I do StarSan? How safe is it? Gloves / eye protection required?

Beer Travel / Re: Beer and Food in Minneapolis/St.Paul
« on: October 15, 2015, 04:34:20 PM »
I'm don't live there, but my favorite place to go when I visit is Town Hall Brewery (on Washington Ave. South right off of I-35W) and Republic, right across the street.

Beer Travel / Re: Drinking my way through the Carribean
« on: October 04, 2015, 05:41:40 PM »
Also in Nassau, the last time I was there at least, you could buy a bottle of Guinness (the tropical foreign extra stout variety) in a grocery store and drink it in the street, as long as you kept it in a brown paper bag. Guinness and conch fritters on the beach.

Not sure if tropical stouts or liberal consumption laws apply to other Caribbean islands, but it's worth asking.

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