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Messages - cheba420

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16
All Grain Brewing / Re: Competition
« on: October 07, 2012, 08:41:28 AM »
Jeff,

Thanks for the kind words. I have to admit that that book hasnt made it into my collection yet. I'll have to get my hands on it soon. My brewing has improved significantly over the last year or so. We've noticed it here at the house and among friends but it was great to get that neutral, 3rd party endorsement yesterday. Like I said in the original post, I've learned a lot on this forum and have put the things I've learned into practice. There's a lot of talent here! Hooked? Yeah...probably!


17
All Grain Brewing / Competition
« on: October 06, 2012, 08:08:35 PM »
Ive been brewing for about 6 years now. Earlier this year I entered a couple beers into a local competition for the first time. I was just looking for feedback and man, did I get it. Horrible results. I entered 1 beer in the wrong category and I entered another beer that I knew wasnt up to par. They ripped them apart. Good lesson. I learned some things and I was humbled.

My brewing buddy and I just entered two new beers into the local home brew club's Octoberfest. We entered a Saison and a Vanilla Porter. We took bronze with both entries and the Vanilla Porter pulled a 38 and the Saison pulled a 40 and moved on to the Best of Show line up, where it got knocked out.

I know that comps arent everything but it is nice to use the info to improve your process and its obviously nice to get the validation that others enjoyed your beer. I've learned a hell of a lot on this forum so I'd like to that all of you that have offered up advice and pointed me in the right direction over the last few years.  I look forward to entering more beers into more contests.

18
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: What's Brewing This Weekend - 9/7
« on: September 09, 2012, 08:51:27 PM »
Just wrapped up a batch of Amber. We recently had a party and drained several kegs. Time to get into a once a week brew schedule to replenish the supplies!

19
Kegging and Bottling / Re: Canning/Bottling in mason jars??
« on: August 05, 2012, 07:55:03 PM »
Mcmennamins provides mason jars in their hotel rooms too.
I've experienced this at one of their brew pubs in a 1 qt jar. I figured it was ok but wanted to check for opinions. I have no intention of carbonating in the mason jars. I'd carbonate in the keg and transport in the mason jars. I think its cool because you pop the lid and you have a pint in your hand! 6 pack of pints? Yes please!

20
Kegging and Bottling / Re: Canning/Bottling in mason jars??
« on: August 04, 2012, 09:57:44 PM »
 ;D

21
Kegging and Bottling / Canning/Bottling in mason jars??
« on: August 04, 2012, 08:29:27 PM »
Has anyone ever tried to bottle up some brew in mason jars? Do they have a pressure rating? I thought opening a jar of beer would have a good effect at a party! I keg, so I'd just be filling them like you would a growler. Thoughts??

22
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Attenuation
« on: July 21, 2012, 10:32:41 AM »
I was under the impression that Chico topped out at 80% attenuation.
There's really no such thing as a yeast "topping out". The fermentability limit of the wort is set in the brewhouse, and with a low-flocculating strain like Chico, the FG should always be very near that limit.

Just for reference, our standard mash at the brewery is 153.5°F, which gives a target FG of 2.5°P given a 12°P OG. That's 79% ADF, and obviously we could mash several degrees lower to increase that. Normally, I'd suggest that you calibrate your mash thermometer, but given that your results are exactly in line with what I see 4-6 times a week, I think you are actually mashing at about 152°F, and getting the fermentability that would be expected from that mash.

I very much doubt you have a contamination issue. There just isn't enough "surplus" attenuation happening.
Thanks for the breakdown. But it poses another question. If the recipe calls for a 152 mash and targets a 1.013 FG using the chico yeast and I am hitting that 152 and getting 1.008 FG with that yeast, theres something wrong there. What are your thoughts? Thermometer calibration? Perhaps my thermometer is reading 152 but I'm actually at 148 or so thus giving me a more fermentable wort and higher attenuation?

23
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Attenuation
« on: July 21, 2012, 10:17:28 AM »
Great thread...

My only input may be impact of pitching rate since you re-pitched your yeast.  I've had some variability with Chico Strain, but in big, healthy pitches it does great.  My last IPA: 1.065-1.008 (87% ADF) in about 11 days (that was the first time I checked it)
I use Mr.malty to calculate my pitching rates. For these last couple of beers the pitching rate was 150 ml of yeast for 1.056 OG. I hit the yeast with a little cooled wort from the boil kettle on brew day to wake it up before we pitch in.

24
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Attenuation
« on: July 21, 2012, 09:41:49 AM »
I was under the impression that Chico topped out at 80% attenuation.
There's really no such thing as a yeast "topping out". The fermentability limit of the wort is set in the brewhouse, and with a low-flocculating strain like Chico, the FG should always be very near that limit.

Just for reference, our standard mash at the brewery is 153.5°F, which gives a target FG of 2.5°P given a 12°P OG. That's 79% ADF, and obviously we could mash several degrees lower to increase that. Normally, I'd suggest that you calibrate your mash thermometer, but given that your results are exactly in line with what I see 4-6 times a week, I think you are actually mashing at about 152°F, and getting the fermentability that would be expected from that mash.

I very much doubt you have a contamination issue. There just isn't enough "surplus" attenuation happening.
Thanks! I will be raising the mash temp on the next go round and see what happens. If that doesnt do it, I'll look at tweaking my recipes to add some more body from grain additions. One step at a time, right?

25
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Attenuation
« on: July 21, 2012, 08:31:34 AM »
Thanks everyone! The last batch we brewed was the APA from Brewing Classic Styles. The one before that was an american wheat, also from brewing classic styles. I changed up the hops on that one but the grain bill and fermentation were kept the same. So my confusion comes from these points. The recipe called for a mash of 152. I hit my mash temp spot on and held it. The OG for this beer was 1.056 and the FG should have been 1.013. Going down to 1.008 just seems like its going too far. I was under the impression that Chico topped out at 80% attenuation. I'm starting to think there may be an infection of some sort even though there arent any off flavors making themselves noticeable. The yeast is a repitch. I split it into two pitches. Those two pitches went into my APA and the wheat which both went down to 1.008. I think I'm going to throw away the yeast that I harvested from those two batches and start over.

26
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Attenuation
« on: July 20, 2012, 09:46:18 PM »
What temp are you mashing at?  My first reaction would definitely be to raise your mash temps.  I can only assume you're in the low 150 or even high 140 range.  If this is the case, shoot for around 156 maybe and see what that does for you. 
I've mashed these recent couple of beers at 152*

27
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Attenuation
« on: July 20, 2012, 09:01:34 PM »
I dont think its an infection as I'm not getting off flavors or other weird things going on. I've never used brett in the brewery so if some got in, it got in from the air and its not putting that dry brett flavor in my beer.
I'm getting well better than 80% attenuation from this and I understood that this yeast topped out at 80%.

28
Yeast and Fermentation / Attenuation
« on: July 20, 2012, 08:33:22 PM »
I use WLP001 for most of my beers. I like how clean it is and it typically makes for some good, tasty beverages. Recently, its been taking my beers down to 1.008. I like the extra abv but its leaving my beer really thin. I'm hitting mash temps, OG targets and fermenting in the mid 60's. Based on my recipes and fermentation parameters, I should be hitting 1.012-1.010.

Any tips? Raise mash temp? Add some less fermentable grains to increase body? Any help is appreciated.


29
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Beer and ice
« on: July 09, 2012, 08:55:02 AM »
I ordered a cider at a local bar the other day and they served it over ice. That was a first time for me. Thought is was weird at first and was going to ask them to repour but I said what the hell and drank it. However, I dont think I'd like it in my beer!

30
The Pub / Re: Breweries
« on: July 07, 2012, 07:32:12 AM »
Thats a nice list. I'd love to visit Rogue the next time I'm up in Oregon. The new facility at New Glarus is beautiful. They did a really nice job and I was very surprised by the size of the operation. For a brewery that only distributes in the state of Wisconsin, they're huge. I'm sure they spill more on the bottling line in a week than I brew all year!

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