Author Topic: New starter procedure trial  (Read 35013 times)

S. cerevisiae

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Re: New starter procedure trial
« Reply #120 on: October 05, 2015, 04:06:44 PM »
I disagree Mark. While hoppy beers are no doubt extremely popular today (arguably overly so), I doubt very seriously that large numbers of brewers are adding extra hops to beers they wouldn't have otherwise, just to cover up infections. Hoppy beers are everywhere because that is the current consumer preference, like it or not.

It still does not detract from the fact that amateur brewers today like to brew IPA for the same reason that brewers liked to brew Stout and Porter in the nineties.  IPA is newbie style because it is difficult to mess up.  Compare the difficulty of producing an IPA with the difficulty of producing a balanced and clean tasting American standard lager.  American standard lager is an order or two of magnitude more difficult to make correctly because there is nothing to hide behind.  Wort production and fermentation flaws stick out like sore thumbs.  Hop balance is incredibly important.   In essence, the style is an undisciplined amateur brewer's nightmare.

Offline Stevie

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Re: New starter procedure trial
« Reply #121 on: October 05, 2015, 04:08:08 PM »
Mark, you've been watching to many AB commercials. ;)

Offline denny

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Re: New starter procedure trial
« Reply #122 on: October 05, 2015, 04:10:36 PM »
which I believe can be traced back to the almost universal use of Star San coupled with "drive by" (a.k.a. "spray and go") sanitization and poor yeast handling practices.

Yet that's what I do 80% of the time.  How would you account for my lack of problems?
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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: New starter procedure trial
« Reply #123 on: October 05, 2015, 04:16:50 PM »
I disagree Mark. While hoppy beers are no doubt extremely popular today (arguably overly so), I doubt very seriously that large numbers of brewers are adding extra hops to beers they wouldn't have otherwise, just to cover up infections. Hoppy beers are everywhere because that is the current consumer preference, like it or not.

It still does not detract from the fact that amateur brewers today like to brew IPA for the same reason that brewers liked to brew Stout and Porter in the nineties.  IPA is newbie style because it is difficult to mess up.  Compare the difficulty of producing an IPA with the difficulty of producing a balanced and clean tasting American standard lager.  American standard lager is an order or two of magnitude more difficult to make correctly because there is nothing to hide behind.  Wort production and fermentation flaws stick out like sore thumbs.  Hop balance is incredibly important.   In essence, the style is an undisciplined amateur brewer's nightmare.

For sure, there are styles like the kolsch and cream ale I brewed over the summer that have little or nothing to hide behind and are tricky to get right. And IPA is a fairly easy style to brew a decent example of for new brewers and can cover up flaws, no doubt - doesn't mean that it's easy to brew a great one though, or that someone who brews one is trying to cover poor sanitation skills.

EDIT - I don't rule it out, but test to brewing skill or not, one of the last styles I'm looking to brew at the end of the week is a BMC clone. Never say never.
« Last Edit: October 05, 2015, 04:33:32 PM by HoosierBrew »
Jon H.

Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: New starter procedure trial
« Reply #124 on: October 05, 2015, 04:17:47 PM »
It still does not detract from the fact that amateur brewers today like to brew IPA for the same reason that brewers liked to brew Stout and Porter in the nineties.  IPA is newbie style because it is difficult to mess up.  Compare the difficulty of producing an IPA with the difficulty of producing a balanced and clean tasting American standard lager.  American standard lager is an order or two of magnitude more difficult to make correctly because there is nothing to hide behind.  Wort production and fermentation flaws stick out like sore thumbs.  Hop balance is incredibly important.   In essence, the style is an undisciplined amateur brewer's nightmare.

We made stouts and porters in the early 90s because they weren't generally commercially available and they were exotic.  I don't think you could get a coffee stout anywhere unless you made it yourself.

The ingredients you could get back then didn't really lend themselves to an American lager.  At least not a good one.  I used a "continental lager" kit one time in the 90s and it came out looking like an amber.

I get your underlying point, which I take to be that certain styles are easier to brew and have stronger flavors that cover up flaws, but I think you're confusing correlation and causation.
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Offline klickitat jim

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Re: New starter procedure trial
« Reply #125 on: October 05, 2015, 04:32:59 PM »
This just in. On the AHA Forum there was a derailment causing injury to the feelings of several so called "newby brewers". Many of them were rushed to the hospital for hugs and warm milk. One gentleman was heard mumbling "Thats not why I bew IPAs. You dont know me, you dont know me"

Next up, a cat that learned to snowboard

S. cerevisiae

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Re: New starter procedure trial
« Reply #126 on: October 05, 2015, 05:24:53 PM »
Yet that's what I do 80% of the time.  How would you account for my lack of problems?

Luck

evil_morty

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Re: New starter procedure trial
« Reply #127 on: October 05, 2015, 05:37:27 PM »
Yet that's what I do 80% of the time.  How would you account for my lack of problems?

Luck

In my experience there is no such thing as luck ;)

Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: New starter procedure trial
« Reply #128 on: October 05, 2015, 05:38:44 PM »
Along the lines of laughable 90s recipes I'd add most (or all) of the old Cat's Meow recipe database. Tons of crystal malt, Cascade hops and 'ale yeast' in pretty much everything. Not coincidentally, every beer I brewed from there (not very many) tasted really similar.   ;)

I never used that recipe database.  Truth be told, I did not spend much time brewing other people's recipes.  I wanted to thoroughly understand the process.  That type of knowledge can only come from not playing it safe. 

With that said, I see the same kind of dynamic with hops today.  Hops are being used to hide a host of poor brewing practices and sins.  To the untrained palate, hops are like spices in that they can cover taint.  With modern home brewing, the taint is mostly caused by low-level infection, which I believe can be traced back to the almost universal use of Star San coupled with "drive by" (a.k.a. "spray and go") sanitization and poor yeast handling practices.
Stan Hieronymus called it flavor masking in highly hopped beers, said it was real, and hides defects that would be an issue in a more subtle style. In noise work, masking refers to a sound at one frequency making another frequency unintelligible. A setting with high amplitude low frequencies, some factories, will make speech recognition a problem.

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Offline a10t2

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Re: New starter procedure trial
« Reply #129 on: October 05, 2015, 05:40:10 PM »
Yet that's what I do 80% of the time.  How would you account for my lack of problems?

Overall good technique and "defense in depth". I met a brewer several years ago who had been brewing excellent beers for years despite not doing what we would consider sanitizing. Just dish soap and hot water. Beer is pretty robust stuff, and acceptable contaminant loads from a flavor stability perspective are high.
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Re: New starter procedure trial
« Reply #130 on: October 05, 2015, 05:53:24 PM »
Yet that's what I do 80% of the time.  How would you account for my lack of problems?

Luck

Time to buy a lottery ticket!
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Offline 69franx

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Re: New starter procedure trial
« Reply #131 on: October 05, 2015, 06:01:24 PM »
Yet that's what I do 80% of the time.  How would you account for my lack of problems?

Luck

In my experience there is no such thing as luck ;)


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Offline denny

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Re: New starter procedure trial
« Reply #132 on: October 05, 2015, 06:13:27 PM »
Yet that's what I do 80% of the time.  How would you account for my lack of problems?

Overall good technique and "defense in depth". I met a brewer several years ago who had been brewing excellent beers for years despite not doing what we would consider sanitizing. Just dish soap and hot water. Beer is pretty robust stuff, and acceptable contaminant loads from a flavor stability perspective are high.

That makes sense.  But sometimes Mark's certainty in his statements reminds me of the Dave Line book form years past when he said that if you didn't get rid of your pets you'd always brew infected beer.  There's science, where I take cues for learning the best practices.  Then there's experience, which shows us if the science really matters.
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evil_morty

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Re: New starter procedure trial
« Reply #133 on: October 05, 2015, 06:42:58 PM »
Considering how much star san I have sitting at my house (practically a life time supply! anyone need any?) this is troubling news to hear.  Like Denny however I've made many (not nearly as many as Denny) batches and have yet to have a noticeably infected batch. *knocks on wood*

S. cerevisiae

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Re: New starter procedure trial
« Reply #134 on: October 05, 2015, 06:55:51 PM »
That makes sense.  But sometimes Mark's certainty in his statements reminds me of the Dave Line book form years past when he said that if you didn't get rid of your pets you'd always brew infected beer.  There's science, where I take cues for learning the best practices.  Then there's experience, which shows us if the science really matters.

What I meant by luck is just because you personally have not encountered a sanitizer's weakness does not mean that it does not exist.  It just means that you have been lucky enough not to encounter it.  The Internet is littered with data that demonstrates that acid-anionic sanitizers are bactericides, not broad-spectrum antimicrobials.  My own experience with beers that plated positive for wild yeast infection after switching to Star San correlates with the published data.  A local guy who I know had a persistent Brett infection that he could not get eliminate.  He switched from Star San to paracetic acid (PAA), and the problem went away.  This guy never had a problem with bacteria infection, even though his Brett beers were usually pitched with what are often referred to as beer spoilage bacteria. 

The fact is Star San is an acid anionic sanitizer.  Five Star even claims that it is a "high foaming, acid anionic, no-rinse sanitizer" on their website (www.fivestarchemicals.com/breweries/homebrewing/products/).  Numerous publications state that acid-anionic sanitizers work via attraction to positively charged cells.  Bacteria cells have a positive charge, yeast and mold cells have a negative charge (i.e., yeast and mold cells repel acid-anionic sanitizers).  Since the active ingredient in Star San, dodecylbenzenesulfonic acid (see www.jstrack.org/brewing/msds/starsan.pdf), is ineffective against yeast and mold, the only thing that Star San can do to yeast and mold is beat it up via low pH,  which is the same thing that happens when we acid wash yeast.

From this publication: www.beer-brewing.com/beer_brewing/brewery_cleaning_sanitation/sanitizing_agents.htm

"Anionic Acids

Anionic acids are one of the fastest growing sanitizing groups in the craft brewing industry. They are chemicals composed of two functional groups-a lipophilic portion and a hydrophillic portion-which results in a negative charge. The negatively charged anionic acid sanitizers react with positively charged bacteria by attraction of opposite charges"


From page 9-6 of this publication: http://jifsan.umd.edu/pdf/gaqps_en/Section9.Effective_Cleaning_and_Sanitizing_Procedures.pdf

"Acid-anionic sanitizers are broad spectrum against bacteria and viruses, but not very effective against yeasts and molds."


From http://dairy-technology.blogspot.com/2014/01/chemical-sanitizers.html

" iv. Acid Anionic Sanitizers

These formulations include an inorganic acid plus a surfactant, and are often used for the dual function of acid rinse and sanitization. Unlike QACs, they are negatively charged. Their activity is moderately affected by water hardness. Their low use pH, detergency, stability, low odor potential, and non-corrosiveness make them highly desirable in some applications. Disadvantages include relatively high cost, a closely defined pH range of activity (pH 2 to 3), low activity on molds and yeasts,excessive foaming in CIP systems and incompatibility with cationic surfactant detergents."

From https://books.google.com/books?id=lCRxcp3gfhUC&pg=PA180&dq=acid-anionic+sanitizers++limited+activity+yeast+mold&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0CB0Q6AEwAGoVChMI3_2lx_6ryAIVQR0eCh2tpAN2#v=onepage&q=acid-anionic sanitizers  limited activity yeast mold&f=false

"Acid anionic sanitizers act rapidly and kill a broad spectrum of bacteria and have good bateriophage activity."

"These sanitizers can be corrosive to unprotected metals and a skin irritant, inactivated by cationic surfactants, may foam too much for CIP equipment, are less effective at a higher pH, have limited and varied antimicrobial activity (including poor yeast and mold activity), and are more expensive than the halogen sanitizers"

Note: The most commonly available halogen sanitizers are idophor and chlorine bleach.
« Last Edit: October 05, 2015, 06:59:44 PM by S. cerevisiae »