Author Topic: NHC Final Round Scores  (Read 940 times)

Offline fmader

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NHC Final Round Scores
« on: August 08, 2013, 07:38:36 PM »
I got my final round score cards today! First off, I am very thrilled and amazed that my beer made the final round. It was a tart cherry stout that was my second all grain recipe that was brewed last July. This was also my first competition. One judge scored it with a 37 (which was my first round overall score). The other judge scored it with a 40. I am completely happy with the scores, but what I'm concerned about is a common comment by them both. For flaws they both checked "gusher" and commented that it was over carbonated. One actually told me to check my other bottles. This is bizarre, because the other 45 bottles that have been opened from that batch are minimally carbonated. I drank the last 22oz tonight and it was perfectly fine. So, could any residual sugars from the cherries or whatever got stirred up in shipping? I didn't have any negative comments about the carbonation at the regional level. I'm just curious if anybody else had any experiences like this so that I can correct it next year. I shipped the three bottles in a fitting box. All of the bottles were wrapped in bubble wrap and then individually put into ziplock bags. Newspaper was then put around them. I do think they laid on their sides... But so did regional beers. Any input would be appreciated.

Frank

Offline Alewyfe

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Re: NHC Final Round Scores
« Reply #1 on: August 08, 2013, 07:55:31 PM »
This is not at all unusual Frank. One speck of residue in a bottle can cause all sorts of carbonation problems.
I've stewarded at Final Round and judges have had a nice looking and tasting beer really gush badly. To give the maker the benefit of the doubt, they've requested the second bottle be opened and guess what? No problem with the other bottle. Your other bottles were probably fine. It was just bad luck they pulled a flawed one. Nice scores though and congratulations to you.
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: NHC Final Round Scores
« Reply #2 on: August 09, 2013, 05:07:58 AM »
I bottle from kegs, so not a full batch. I can do a case at a time with this procedure.

For completions one can crimp foil over bottles after they have been cleaned and rinsed. Then bake the bottles in the oven for an hour at about 375F. That will kill anything that was left in the bottle. Take the heat down in steps, then turn the oven off and let the bottles cool in place, otherwise the glass will be brittle.

As  for my CAP, it was said to have too much corn aroma and not enough bitterness. It was 20% corn meal that was cereal mashed. Bitterness was targeted at 35 IBU. Scored a 36 second round vs. 40 first round. On my next CAP I might bump the bitterness to 40, but 20% corn is just fine by me.
« Last Edit: August 09, 2013, 05:09:30 AM by hopfenundmalz »
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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: NHC Final Round Scores
« Reply #3 on: August 09, 2013, 05:46:18 AM »
Great job Frank !
Jon H.

Offline fmader

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Re: NHC Final Round Scores
« Reply #4 on: August 09, 2013, 06:28:37 AM »
Thanks guys! I rebrewed 10 gallons of this beer a couple weeks ago with adjustments made geared toward critisism from the first round scorecards.... Can't do much about the carbonation issue I guess. Nonetheless, I will enter it again next year  :)
Frank

Offline Janis

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Re: NHC Final Round Scores
« Reply #5 on: August 09, 2013, 08:08:44 AM »
I got my final round score cards today! First off, I am very thrilled and amazed that my beer made the final round. It was a tart cherry stout that was my second all grain recipe that was brewed last July. This was also my first competition. One judge scored it with a 37 (which was my first round overall score). The other judge scored it with a 40. I am completely happy with the scores, but what I'm concerned about is a common comment by them both. For flaws they both checked "gusher" and commented that it was over carbonated. One actually told me to check my other bottles. This is bizarre, because the other 45 bottles that have been opened from that batch are minimally carbonated. I drank the last 22oz tonight and it was perfectly fine. So, could any residual sugars from the cherries or whatever got stirred up in shipping? I didn't have any negative comments about the carbonation at the regional level. I'm just curious if anybody else had any experiences like this so that I can correct it next year. I shipped the three bottles in a fitting box. All of the bottles were wrapped in bubble wrap and then individually put into ziplock bags. Newspaper was then put around them. I do think they laid on their sides... But so did regional beers. Any input would be appreciated.
Hi,

Thanks for entering the National Homebrew Competition.  Congratulations on your great scores!

In my experience (with mead, but I think it happens with beer too), carbonation is different in 12 oz bottles than it will be in bomber bottles from the same batch.  In my mead I found the 12 oz bottle to have a higher carbonation level with much finer bubbles than the carbonation in the 22 oz bottles.  If the carbonation level is good in the bomber bottles, it probably was way more effervescent in the 12 oz bottles. You might want to split your batch and then add the bottling sugar in different amounts for the bombers and the 12 oz bottles.

Cheers,
Janis
Janis Gross
National Homebrew Competition Director
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Offline fmader

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Re: NHC Final Round Scores
« Reply #6 on: August 09, 2013, 08:43:40 AM »
I only bottle 1 or 2 bombers per batch. The 12 oz bottles were fine too. I had one of those a couple weeks ago.
Frank

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Re: NHC Final Round Scores
« Reply #7 on: August 09, 2013, 08:51:31 AM »
Hi,

In that case, I'd chalk it up to the bottles being subjected to non-refrigerated conditions during shipping, and possibly any shaking up/agitation as the package was handled.

Cheers,
Janis
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Offline fmader

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Re: NHC Final Round Scores
« Reply #8 on: August 09, 2013, 09:35:48 AM »
Yeah... That's what I'm thinking. Owell... Still a great experience overall!
Frank

Offline hubie

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Re: NHC Final Round Scores
« Reply #9 on: August 09, 2013, 11:17:20 AM »
Congratulations Frank.  From a recipe standpoint, I'm curious to know what you did to add the tart cherry.  Fresh, frozen, puree, etc.

Offline macbrews

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Re: NHC Final Round Scores
« Reply #10 on: August 09, 2013, 11:32:08 AM »
When I hear the term "gusher", I usually think of wild yeast contamination rather than it being just a bit too fizzy.  This would especially be true if the other bottles, regardless of size, had an acceptable carb level.

Offline fmader

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Re: NHC Final Round Scores
« Reply #11 on: August 09, 2013, 12:02:38 PM »
When I hear the term "gusher", I usually think of wild yeast contamination rather than it being just a bit too fizzy.  This would especially be true if the other bottles, regardless of size, had an acceptable carb level.

I've had beers turn into gushers before. Not one bottle from this batch had an issue... Except for the ones that I sent.
Frank

Offline fmader

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Re: NHC Final Round Scores
« Reply #12 on: August 09, 2013, 12:11:54 PM »
Congratulations Frank.  From a recipe standpoint, I'm curious to know what you did to add the tart cherry.  Fresh, frozen, puree, etc.

I used fresh but frozen cherries. I bought them at a local orchard, but they were imported here in eastern Ohio from Michigan. I used 10 lbs in a five gallon batch. I racked onto them in the secondary for two weeks. It took a good 6 months for this beer to really get good. It scored higher in the finals because it was better with age. The one I drank last night was the best. It was brewed 7/31/12. I do have a four pack stashed away  :)

I did a 10 gallon batch a few weeks ago. I adjusted to 7.5 lbs per 5 gallons this year. I will be bottling next week.

But for an FYI... Tart cherries are usually ready early to mid July.
Frank