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Topics - brewmasternpb

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General Homebrew Discussion / Scoresheet comment... Inappropriate?
« on: April 27, 2013, 04:34:18 AM »
Hi guys, I got my 2 scoresheets back from the regional competition for NHC.  One was great, I think I advanced to the second round with a 44.  The other one was a 28, a score I am much more used to  ;D.
I usually like the comments, even if they are critical, but a comment I received for my 28 beer (IPA), seemed a little harsh.  For overall impression, it says:
Very nice but very one dimensional
more like a big pale ale
Better Beers on table

So, I may be too sensitive here, but I just wanted to know what you guys thought of the third line, I just thought it went without saying that if you scored a 28, there were better beers on the table.

Events / NHC seminars
« on: March 28, 2013, 04:27:11 AM »
Hey guys, this will be my first Conference, and I'm totally stoked.  My Brother-in-law and I bought the whole package, but our wives got the social package.  I saw a couple of seminars I feel like they would love (Mead and Chocolate for one)... Can they somehow gain entry into one or two seminars?

Ingredients / Water- Chloride concerns
« on: March 13, 2013, 05:02:30 AM »
So...after 10 years of brewing, I think I may have some vague understanding of water chemistry.  I've been using the water Calculator (in addition to reading various books and articles) that's found online, and it makes sense. For the past 5 brews, I had just been adding 3/4 tsp of gypsum, as my water is below what I've found to be recommended brewing ranges in Calcium and sulfate.  I'm now getting to the point where I want to adjust my brewing salts in accordance with the beer I'm making (novel idea)... because I tried the 3/4 tsp of gypsum with Pale ales, IPA's and Porters, and the Porter is decidedly lacking in Malt profile.  From what I've gathered, the balance of a beer is related to the sulfate:chloride ratio, and my water is very low in chloride (23.5 PPM)... Back to the present, I'm doing a SMaSH Blonde ale, to get back to basics and really taste some base malt.  I'm using the "Balanced profile" on the water calculator, and will (predictably) have to add Calcium Chloride to boost the Sulfate: Chloride ratio.  My fear is: will Chloride act the same way that Chloramine does, and give me chlorophenol problems?  Before I started using a carbon filter, I had awful chlorophenol issues.  A quick internet search does not really tell me the difference between chloride and chloramines (or chlorine for that matter).  Any help on the matter would be helpful, as will any feedback concerning my water chemistry rationale.  Thanks guys,

Yeast and Fermentation / First Sour beer
« on: November 14, 2012, 04:40:19 AM »
So... I've done a lot of information gathering, and I think I'm at that point where I just need to brew a sour to put all of that info together.  Before that I'd like to throw out my idea for my first batch to the forum:

Beer- Baltic Porter (Mashed rather high to give the bugs plenty to chew on)

Yeast- Sach strain (Wyeast 1056), made from a good starter

Brett Strain (Brett B or C), add vial when I add the sach strain, because Brett enjoys oxygen too.

Bugs- Bottle Dregs from the most recent Avery Barrel aged beers- Added to Secondary, because Pedio and other bugs do not like O2.

Age- A while (10-12 Months)

It seems like a solid plan... but Maybe there are some holes in it.  My main question... will one bottle suffice for harvesting dregs, or should I use more?

Any help is appreciated.

Ingredients / Raspberry Juice concentrate
« on: October 23, 2012, 01:40:41 AM »
I want to make a beer using raspberry juice concentrate (as mentioned by Brian Sellers in a past Zymurgy).  I did a google search, and there are some health food examples, but the closest thing to something I might find in my local grocery store is a White Grape Raspberry by Welches.  Does anyone have experience with concentrates?

General Homebrew Discussion / Dry hopping and CO2 purging
« on: October 03, 2012, 03:41:27 AM »
Hey guys, I've decided that I want to purge oxygen out of my beer when I dry hop and transfer.  I don't keg, so I don't have CO2 tanks/pressure valves, etc... I was thinking about buying one of those Co2 "guns", armed with cartridges ($25 at the LHBS).  However, after talking to the LHBS guy, he suggested adding a little bit of DME (boiled in water and cooled) to the beer, effectively using all O2 and adding to my Co2 blanket.
The logic seems solid to me, any experience?

Ingredients / New varieties for Rhizomes?
« on: September 11, 2012, 04:13:44 AM »
Hi guys,
I've been searching the internet to see if some previously unavailable hops (in rhizome form) will be available in the spring... So far, it's the same ole varieties, but I wanted to see if anyone had any inside info.  I really want amarillo, but I don't think that's in the cards.

General Homebrew Discussion / Using the term "farmhouse"
« on: August 04, 2012, 08:38:30 PM »
This question relates to entering beers into competition.  Can "Farmhouse" be used as a style descriptor when entering into specialty categories or categories that require a base beer to be identified?  I realize that I can put whatever I want, but will judges know how to judge the beer?  My beer in question is a Baltic porter that I'm fermenting with the American Farmhouse strain.  I don't want to call it a Belgian-style Baltic Porter, because I think the judges would be looking for yeast characteristics that won't be there. 
The second part of my question would be, where to enter it?  I'm thinking either Specialty or Belgian Specialty.  I'm going to age it on Oak, but I don't think it will be oak-y enough to enter it as a wood aged beer.  Thanks everyone!

Beer Travel / Tips for a family trip to the Jersey Shore
« on: July 23, 2012, 04:57:41 AM »
So, from experience, I know very well that I'm going to a craft beer wasteland:  Ocean City, New Jersey.  I know there aren't any breweries around (1 in Atlantic city, and I've been there once), but are there any good beer/liquor stores that I can find some good east coast beer?  I'm from Colorado, so I'd like to try some sixpoint, Southern Tier, Troegs, etc... Any ideas are welcome,

All Grain Brewing / Overnight mash
« on: July 20, 2012, 04:03:32 AM »
Hi everyone...
I had a friend brew a Saison that he mashed over night, making for a really long Sac rest.  That Saison ended up taking Bronze for the category in the 2nd round of the NHC a couple of years ago.  However, it's only one point of reference, so if anyone else has info about an overnight Mash, I would like to hear it!

General Homebrew Discussion / Categorizing a Farmhouse Ale
« on: July 07, 2012, 04:36:01 AM »
Hello All,
I brewed a beer that was loosely based on the Crooked Stave Farmhouse Ale that was recently featured as the beer of the week.  Instead of using 100% Brett, I used the White Labs American Farmhouse blend, and I used Pacific Jade hops, including 2 oz of dry hops.  Additionally, I used a darker Munich malt that made the beer a dark orange/medium Amber color.  It turned out great, although I hope it gets funkier... It is very fruity right now (papaya).
I would like to enter it into a comp soon, but am struggling on where to put it.  I tasted it against the Saison style guidelines, and I feel it's much too full bodied to do well in that category, and it's pushing the color threshold for the category.  However, the fruity esters and peppery hop character from the Pacific Jade, fit right in with the style.  My other option would be to enter it as a "Dry Hopped Amber Farmhouse" in the Belgian Specialty category... Any Ideas?

Yeast and Fermentation / Yeast suggestion for 4 different styles
« on: March 28, 2012, 05:28:41 AM »
Hi gang, I plan my beers out using the same yeast for 4 batches per yeast pack.  For my Spring series (March, April, May and June), I want to do the following styles:
Irish Red Ale
Old Ale
Robust Porter
Summer Rye Ale (I'm looking for a clean, Malty, easy drinkin' beer)

I want a beer that brings out the malt, with relatively low esters and/or phenolics.  Also, something that can handle temps up to 68-72 degrees F)

My current thought is the Wyeast European Ale, but if anyone has an idea for a clean British strain, I would listen.  I was playing around with the idea of the Australian Ale yeast from White labs.


Ingredients / Organic Rhizomes
« on: September 10, 2011, 03:11:10 AM »
Hello everyone, there is a lot of advertising lately about organic rhizomes.  If I were to buy a rhizome and plant it, without ever using pesticides or other chemicals, wouldn't that hop plant be organic (regardless of what rhizome I bought)?

Yeast and Fermentation / Highly Floculent yeast
« on: September 10, 2011, 03:08:11 AM »
I have a question; If I use a yeast that is characterized by high flocculation, do I have to take that into account when i bottle condition my beers?  My thought is that, if there's less yeast in suspension, there may not be enough to effectively get through the priming sugar...

Ingredients / Hop freshness
« on: June 24, 2011, 05:45:38 AM »
Hello all, I purchased 1 lb of Cascade and 1 lb of Chinook from  After a pale ale, an IPA and an IIPA, I think the hops were significantly less than fresh.  I did pay less than $16 per lb with free shipping.  What I would like to know is, what are some better sites/vendors to buy bulk hops cheap?

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