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Messages - skyler

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Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Recent use of US05
« on: November 30, 2016, 01:53:19 PM »
IME, 1st generation US-05 can be slow to finish when I ferment very cool (under ~62F). Second generation US-05 is faster, more reliable, and more flocculant, IME - even when it is a month-old unwashed pitch stored in a sanitized mason jar in the fridge.

BRY-97 takes FOREVER to start and to finish, FWIW, even later generations of it. And it practically doesn't work at all when I try to ferment cooler than 62º F, IME. When I am in a hurry, I go with an English yeast and ferment in the low 60's, then ramp up to ambient when it hits high krausen.

The Pub / Re: Whole Foods
« on: November 22, 2016, 09:50:15 AM »
When in Belgium, I found Westmalle dubbel to be the "go to" beer if the place didn't have a printed menu and wasn't particularly beer-centric. I knew without fail that I could easily order it and it would be great and would go well with almost any Belgian food I ate (their food is heavy and sweet). If I am slowly drinking 5 beers in an evening out (I am not usually a fast drinker), Westmalle dubbel and trippel are not too bold for me to continue enjoying and the high alcohol allows me to get somewhat intoxicated through slow drinking.

The bigger trappist beers that I enjoy so deeply like Rochefort 10 and St. Bernardus 12 are too rich to have more than one of, usually. Orval is a very specific beer. I actually far prefer it fresh over aged, so I don't really drink it outside of Belgium. Achel is okay, but clearly inferior to the others, aside from Koningshoeven. I think Koningshoeven sucks - like it is genuinely not very good beer and well below average in any beer bar in Belgium (yes I know it's Dutch). Westvleteren was very good, but not worth the hassle/$$$ - unless you can drink the blonde fresh.

The Pub / Re: What's the Weather Like Where You Are?
« on: November 22, 2016, 09:33:12 AM »
It's damp and rainy and only about half of the Californian transplants are wearing winter hats and ski jackets.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Mash thickness
« on: November 22, 2016, 09:21:54 AM »
Honestly, with most styles (pale to light brown) and with most water, you are probably fine just mashing everything together. Only if you have particularly acidic water does it make sense to mash all base malt and then add the specialty grains, but then using a water spreadsheet isn't difficult, either.

Ingredients / Re: Na levels in brewing...
« on: November 02, 2016, 12:24:18 PM »
Guys, I have found this discussion pretty compelling. It has been my experience that beers with tons of sulfate (200+ ppm) are unpleasantly bitter, regardless of the amount of chloride. I am wondering now if added sodium is the reason why I always found Tasty McDole's pale ales (and others) to taste pleasant and not overly mineral-bitter. And I absolutely loved the good-quality traditional English ales I had in Britain. Perhaps the additional sodium rounds out the whole profile of the beer?

Anyway, I am going to try this out soon for an AIPA (shooting for 5.4 pH): 100 ppm Ca, 5 ppm Mg, 40 ppm Na, 100 ppm Chloride, 200 ppm Sulfate, 9 ppm Bicarbonate. It's not as hard as some common pale ale profiles, but it is a lot harder than my usual ~(50 ppm Ca, 5 ppm Mg, 3 ppm Na, 40 ppm Chloride, 60 ppm Sulfate, 9 ppm Bicarbonate).

All Grain Brewing / Re: Roasted hazelnut
« on: November 02, 2016, 09:09:41 AM »
How are you adding the coffee? 2 oz of regular brewed coffee will add little to the keg. 2 oz of espresso could be a minor, subtle coffee-like note, but even then, I would probably add 8 or more oz. Adding 2 oz of grounds or whole beans makes some sense (assuming you take it out after a day or two to avoid over-extraction), but my experience would tell me your best bet would be adding filtered, concentrated cold brewed coffee to the keg - it is much more stable than hot-brewed coffee. I use a 2-cup french press and add double the amount of coffee I would use for regular coffee. then add room temperature water and give it 12 hours. Then I press the coffee and pour it through a coffee filter before adding it to the keg. I tell myself the acidity of the coffee protects against infection, but I'm not really sure.

Ingredients / Re: Homegrown Cascade Recipe, need help
« on: October 27, 2016, 01:30:30 PM »
If you're looking for a balanced bitterer (not too smooth, not too harsh) for American ales, CTZ (Columbus, Tomahawk, or Zeus) is great. Likewise Nugget, Bravo, and Warrior are all good choices. If you want something super-smooth, Apollo, Magnum, Summit, and Simcoe are all very smooth bitterers, in my experience.

If it was my beer, I would do something like:

.5 oz CTZ 60 min
1 oz cascade/centennial/amarillo 10 min
3 oz homegrown cascade 0 min

Looks good. Have you bittered with chinook before? It's pretty assertive. I like it, just mentioning it.

Yes, I have, but for a subtler approach, do you have a different recommendation? Cascade pellets?

All Things Food / Re: Goat Meat
« on: October 27, 2016, 09:43:05 AM »
Goat meat is almost identical to lamb meat, IMO, or mutton, depending on the age of the goat. Low and slow will work, as will grinding/mincing. I have also heard of Mexican restaurants braising goat (as well as pork) in orange juice or a mix of orange juice and cola or root beer. I think your plan to smoke it and then braise it sounds pretty tasty, though I would probably just braise it since that would take less effort and still be delicious.

Ingredients / Re: Oversensitive to cascade and similar hops
« on: October 27, 2016, 05:53:46 AM »
One reason why I really enjoy American brown ale as a style is that it is so diverse. One reason I don't like submitting brown ales to competitions is that many judges don't like them hoppy and others believe anything with "American" needs bold citrusy hop character.

Hops are expensive. It always surprises me when a brewery's IPA is lacking in hop character, but they have a brown ale/porter/stout that is on the hoppy side. For my tastebuds, an IPA without sufficient hop aroma is an unpleasant beer, but I can certainly enjoy a malty brown ale with hops as a bittering agent only.

All Things Food / Re: Beer style(s) for Thanksgiving?
« on: October 26, 2016, 12:53:01 PM »
I like brown ale with Thanksgiving food. Something in the 1.050-1.060 range, 25-35 IBUs and not dry-hopped.

I also think a balanced pale ale tastes great with traditional American food. Something like this would work for a 5 gal batch:

90% pale ale malt from anywhere
5% UK Medium Crystal
5% carapils or similar

mash ~153º F depending on yeast choice, for a 75-78% AA

30-40 IBUs
Bitter with Nugget/CTZ/Apollo/Whatever FWH or 60 mins or 90 mins
1-2 oz of Cascade, Amarillo or Centennial at 10 mins
1-3 oz of Cascade, Amarillo, Centennial or Chinook, or a blend of any 2-3 at flameout/whirlpool
0-2 oz of any of those hops dry

American or English yeast (personally, I like to mash dry and use 1968 or equivalent).

The Pub / Re: Baseball 2016
« on: October 26, 2016, 12:39:59 PM »
As an A's fan, I root against Jon Lester in the post-season because of the way he pooped the bed in October 2014. That said, I'm rooting for the cubs on this one.

Beer Recipes / Re: Bohemian ale? Does this sound like a good idea?
« on: October 26, 2016, 12:35:19 PM »
Well, yes you can absolutely taste something that resembles a Bohemian Pilsner by fermenting cool with a clean ale yeast. Mixing 2-row with pilsner malt and using a blend of lots of noble-type hops may make something more hop-forward and blond ale-like than a true Pilsner Urquell mock-lager clone (which would be mostly pils and saaz). But since it seems like you just want something yellow, crisp, and balanced, then you'll be fine. If it was me, I would do something like this and call it "Bohemian Fraud" or "The Unbearable Lightness of Beering":

Pilsner malt
~.5 lbs carafoam/carapils
Saur/Acid malt (if necessary for pH)

~30 IBU from 60/90 min addition of clean-bittering hops
~1 oz noble-type hops at 10 min
~1 oz noble-type hops at flameout (hop stand)

Ferment cool (Pacman/Joystick would be my first choice, US-05/Chico would be my second)
Cold crash and fine aggressively
Pour it foamy

The Pub / Re: Spelling and Grammar
« on: October 26, 2016, 12:17:20 PM »
First of all, I don't ever want to correct anyone in a discussion here because that would be rude. That's why I made this its own post in "the pub."

I would say (and I know that I'm in the minority on this by a wide margin) that the ongoing trend of "it doesn't matter, as long as I get the point across" only leads to lower expectations of everyone all the time.  It doesn't take much more time to just try a little and make things much better.  Must we always lower the bar?

(I know, I'm just a grumpy old man and should accept it and shut up)

I agree with this.

In truth, poor grammar isn't a big deal on these forums, but I thought it was a topic worthy of a little discussion here and I felt like venting a bit. I also teach English and I have had students (high school seniors, even) who do not know basic capitalization rules or the difference between "ru" and "are you" because the only writing they encounter is informal discussion online. I do think it is worth making a basic effort online, but I don't think it is a big deal when people mess up. And I am not above criticism on this. But I do prefer reading complete sentences using properly-spelled words and effective punctuation.

i go other forums like gaming forums 'were not understanding ppl's saying. cause their not riteing complete sentinces or fix the gramer or whatevs. My venting here may have something to do with that.

The Pub / Re: Spelling and Grammar
« on: October 26, 2016, 11:15:05 AM »
Sometimes the issues with English conventions and usage in these forums feels like an itch


touché  ;D

The Pub / Spelling and Grammar
« on: October 25, 2016, 01:14:25 PM »
Sometimes the issues with English conventions and usage in these forums feels like an itch I can't scratch because I don't want to be a jerk and tell people their spelling sucks. So I decided to scratch that itch here by showcasing a few common errors on these forums in the hopes that a few of my fellow homebrewing enthusiasts will notice the next time they use the wrong "your." Please feel free to add to this list.

Lose ≠ Loose. Your loose grip on spelling will make me lose my mind.

Your = belongs to you, You're = you are. You're unfortunate if your K-12 education didn't teach you this rule.

Pallet = the wooden shipping platform that gets carried by a fork lift. Palate = a person's appreciation of taste and flavor, among other things.

There's = there is, There're = there are. There're many reasons why you should learn proper English contractions, but there's always one dummy who forgets how to contract.

Now, for some advanced level punctuating:

1. That one brewer's stout was tasty.
2. Those two brewers' porters were both good.
3. Mr. Jones's amber ale was only mediocre.

Apostrophe Source:

Ok, you can all hate me now.

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