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Messages - ajk

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All Grain Brewing / Dry Lagers
« on: April 22, 2012, 04:20:25 AM »
Where on your palate are you perceiving the dryness?  I perceive astringency forward of my front teeth, just inside the lips.  Feels like my teeth have been sucked dry.

Dryness contributors I didn't see mentioned here are roast level and hop bitterness, which I perceive mid-palate and at the back of the mouth, respectively. You might need to back off on one of these.

I don't think 170°F is too hot for batch sparging.  The thermal mass of the grain and mash tun are going to reduce the water temperature considerably.

Btw, I've never heard of sparging twice like that.  I think what is meant by "roughly half" is that the runoff from the *mash* should be roughly equivalent to the runoff from (only one) sparge.

Events / NHC 1st Round Indy
« on: April 21, 2012, 03:36:09 AM »
I judged but wasn't involved with the organizing.  It went very smoothly from my perspective.  Despite several no-shows Sunday morning, we finished on schedule (4 flights total).

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Cooling/storing wort
« on: April 19, 2012, 07:59:49 AM »
Wouldn't no-chill result in a horrendous DMS problem?  Or is that overcome some other way?

Just brewed a shyPA for a local competition.  Going into the fermentor now.  NHC judging tomorrow and Sunday.

That concrete floor kind of looks like the top of a giant open fermenter!

Yeah, hopefully that means cleaning up spills will be less of an urgency!

All Grain Brewing / Smoked Beer Ideas
« on: April 05, 2012, 12:27:59 PM »
Everyone seems to cite different intensities when discussing commercial smoked malts like Weyermann's.  I'm not sure why, but I suspect it depends heavily on how long it takes to get to you from the source and how well it was cared for along the way.  Of course, it also depends on the gravity of the beer and the other specialty grains present.

Probably not germane to this discussion, but in my opinion, smoked beer doesn't go very well with smoked meat.  The smoke in one deadens my ability to taste the smoke in the other.  With BBQ, I'd rather have some contrasting sweetness such as you'd get from a Bock or a Belgian Blond or a Tripel.

General Homebrew Discussion / Fermenting in a corny keg
« on: April 03, 2012, 03:43:56 PM »
Has anyone that uses a quick connect to attach a blowoff hose ever had any clogging problems?  I was thinking this could be an issue so I was thinking of removing the poppet from the IN port and just attaching some silicone tubing to that with a pinch clamp.

Never any clogging here.

Brewed a no-sparge Scottish 70/-.  First brew on the newly dyed/sealed concrete floor (after a long saga of concrete finishing I won't bore you with).

General Homebrew Discussion / Fermenting in a corny keg
« on: April 01, 2012, 06:03:27 AM »
In my corny fermentors, I bend the dip tube so it touches the side of the keg about where the bottom seam is.  A friend showed me this.  After racking off the beer, you can then tip the keg on its side and blow out almost all of what was left behind.  I use this technique to collect yeast for repitching.  I wonder if you could use a similar technique *before* racking.

Instead of an airlock, I use a blowoff hose.  It's just a length of tubing connected to the gas post of the keg with the other end in a jar of sanitizer.

Ingredients / Re: hops for a porter
« on: August 15, 2011, 08:41:08 PM »
I am not familiar with Delta - what's the profile?

It's a Fuggles/Cascade cross.  As flavor/aroma additions, I don't find them to be reminiscent of either, really.  Some lemony citrus, but also some spicy, herbal notes.  What I have are 6.5% AA.  Harpoon recently did a single-varietal ESB with Delta.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Keg secondary fermentation
« on: August 15, 2011, 08:36:28 PM »

I use Corny kegs for primary fermentation, and once that's finished (after 1-4 weeks), I transfer to another Corny.  But I just carbonate and serve it right out of that second Corny (after dry-hopping, if it's that kind of beer). 

How are you transferring the beer from primary fermentor to secondary?  I have two corny kegs but cannot figure out how I am going to transfer all 5 gallons without sucking up the spent yeast in the bottom of my keg. 

A friend of mine gave me the idea.  I bend the beverage dip tube gradually so it touches the side of the keg right at the seam between the cylindrical part of the keg and the bowl-shaped bottom.  That way I can use CO2 to push the beer to a serving keg (no secondaries for me) without yeast uptake.  Then, to harvest the yeast, I tilt the keg on its side (beverage post up) and push the yeast out (usually through a cobra tap into Mason jars), again with CO2.

Ingredients / Re: hops for a porter
« on: August 11, 2011, 05:47:08 PM »
I used Delta in a Robust recently and really enjoyed it.

Ingredients / Re: What is candi sugar?
« on: July 28, 2011, 05:42:56 AM »
As for when to add it, I like making a syrup and adding it to primary after high kräusen.  For big beers, it seems to improve attenuation, especially if you do it bit by bit (incremental feeding).  I don't have any hard data on it, though.

Basic Brewing Radio did an episode on making sugar syrups, and a helpful listener put together a summary of the procedure.  I just made the double-stage deep amber syrup last night and added some of it to a Belgian Dubbel that had been fermenting.  I'm hoping to trade what was left over for beer bullets (I assume it tastes great in coffee, over cheesecake, etc.).

Ingredients / Re: Infused sugars?
« on: July 07, 2011, 08:02:56 AM »
Reminds me of the hop salt Sean Paxton mentioned in his NHC talk.  I want to make some of that!

If you can't siphon using carboy caps for whatever reason, at least make sure that the air is as still as possible when transferring wort or beer. Close off the heating or cooling vents, turn off the fans, shoo kids and pets out of the transferring area, and give the dust in the air 30-60 minutes to settle. Dust is your enemy here, since it carries mold and bacteria spores.

I use a fume hood that vents to the outside to create an updraft.  My assumption is any microflora get pulled upward and pumped out of the house, hopefully without causing chaotic airflow that might push them down into the wort.  Jamil Zainasheff has suggested using a candle to create an updraft.

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