Author Topic: Homebrew Book Topics  (Read 2216 times)

Offline dimik

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Re: Homebrew Book Topics
« Reply #15 on: October 16, 2011, 07:13:29 PM »
I'd like something on water chemistry, beer blending, and yeast culturing. All in scientific style and in depth without fluffy swirls and basic brewing intro taking up half the book. I realize, however, that such books would have about 5-10 people reading audience and thus would never get printed.

Have you seen Yeast: The Practical Guide to Beer Fermentation by Jamil Zainasheff and Chris White? It covers yeast culturing and a whole lot more on yeast.

I'm pretty certain I read that John Palmer is working on a book all about water chemistry


I've heard that the yeast book is very intro level with LOTS of basic brewing intro and barely anything worthwhile for people who've done cell work in real labs, so I never had the courage to dish out 20 bucks for something that's potentially useless.
Does anyone have more concrete info on it?
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Online tschmidlin

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Re: Homebrew Book Topics
« Reply #16 on: October 16, 2011, 09:59:50 PM »
I have it but haven't read it.  That said, yeast culturing is not that complicated.  Read through this page and you should be well on your way.

http://www.maltosefalcons.com/tech/yeast-propagation-and-maintenance-principles-and-practices

If you have any specific questions, post them here and I'll help.
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Offline ukolowiczd

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Re: Homebrew Book Topics
« Reply #17 on: October 17, 2011, 01:46:16 PM »
I have read recommendations on Amazon.com about the yeast book and that's what I thought - a basic intro book which is not what I want. Thanks for the link to the yeast page. I haven't read it yet but I'm not really looking into improving my yeast culturing. I want to know how microbreweries keep "house strains". They must put them under a microscope and culture them from there, but how can they differentiate b/w the yeast they want and other yeasts/bacteria and isolate them. I just don't really get that. I mean does anyone not buy yeast from wyeast/white labs b/c they maintain a steady house strain?

Offline dimik

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Re: Homebrew Book Topics
« Reply #18 on: October 17, 2011, 02:08:59 PM »
I have it but haven't read it.  That said, yeast culturing is not that complicated.  Read through this page and you should be well on your way.

http://www.maltosefalcons.com/tech/yeast-propagation-and-maintenance-principles-and-practices

If you have any specific questions, post them here and I'll help.

Thanks for the link. I think that page has more useful info than what I hear the yeast book has.
I'd like to think that my yeast culturing skills are more or less alright and I can maintain strains and blend as I like, but what I'd like is a body of information, like primary literature, on yeast strain properties, morphologies, defining traits, metabolic differences etc. You know what I mean? That's why such publications wouldn't appeal to homebrewers.
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Online tschmidlin

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Re: Homebrew Book Topics
« Reply #19 on: October 17, 2011, 03:06:32 PM »
I have read recommendations on Amazon.com about the yeast book and that's what I thought - a basic intro book which is not what I want. Thanks for the link to the yeast page. I haven't read it yet but I'm not really looking into improving my yeast culturing. I want to know how microbreweries keep "house strains". They must put them under a microscope and culture them from there, but how can they differentiate b/w the yeast they want and other yeasts/bacteria and isolate them. I just don't really get that. I mean does anyone not buy yeast from wyeast/white labs b/c they maintain a steady house strain?
A lot of breweries store their house strains with wyeast/white labs, and get fresh pitches as needed.  They will generally repitch as many as 7-20 times, and since they split it after each batch that can account for a lot of batches.  Most breweries don't do any culturing at all.

There are a number of tests you can do for your strain of choice, and you get used to that strains performance and can tell when it is deviating from what you expect.  But you can do viability staining and look under a scope, sure.  For contaminants, looking under a microscope is not the best way to go.  A very small portion of bacteria or wild yeast can have a significant effect on the finished beer, and it could easily be overlooked when it is in the beginning stages of contamination.

Another thing you can do is plate it and look at the colonies.  Colony morphology can tell you a lot about the health of the culture, and even the smell of the plates can vary quite a bit between different strains.

Obviously I don't know what every brewery in the country does, but the ones around here tend to do what I've mentioned above.
Tom Schmidlin

Online tschmidlin

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Re: Homebrew Book Topics
« Reply #20 on: October 17, 2011, 03:16:11 PM »
I have it but haven't read it.  That said, yeast culturing is not that complicated.  Read through this page and you should be well on your way.

http://www.maltosefalcons.com/tech/yeast-propagation-and-maintenance-principles-and-practices

If you have any specific questions, post them here and I'll help.

Thanks for the link. I think that page has more useful info than what I hear the yeast book has.
I'd like to think that my yeast culturing skills are more or less alright and I can maintain strains and blend as I like, but what I'd like is a body of information, like primary literature, on yeast strain properties, morphologies, defining traits, metabolic differences etc. You know what I mean? That's why such publications wouldn't appeal to homebrewers.
If you're talking about the differences between 1056 and 1084 for example, your best source of info is the lab that sells them.  If you're talking more about morphological differences between brett and sacch for example, there are resources but they can be hard to find or they tend to get pretty pricey if their compiled into a book.

And you're right, they don't really appeal to homebrewers.  The Journal of the Association of Brewing Chemists doesn't usually have articles like what you're talking about, and some of it hasn't been studied much.  I agree it's frustrating. :-\

This is a really good book that seems to have gotten a lot more expensive than when I got it . . . it has some of the info you're looking for.
http://www.amazon.com/Brewing-Microbiology-F-G-Priest/dp/0306472880/
Tom Schmidlin

Offline roguenationpatriot

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Re: Homebrew Book Topics
« Reply #21 on: October 17, 2011, 04:12:11 PM »
Blending beer. +1!

I've been working on this myself, and it seems that there is little out there on the subject.



   I was just at a lecture with Gordon Strong over the weekend, and he talked a bit about blending beers to offset the ph of one beer with another.  To be honest, it hadn't really occurred to me that a bad could be saved by mixing the right blend.  It was process that I always just associated with wines and meads.  I plan to sit and work with blending on a regular basis now, but I figure it will take some time before I'll do it well.
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Offline James Lorden

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Re: Homebrew Book Topics
« Reply #22 on: October 18, 2011, 08:54:08 AM »
Blending beer. +1!

I've been working on this myself, and it seems that there is little out there on the subject.



   I was just at a lecture with Gordon Strong over the weekend, and he talked a bit about blending beers to offset the ph of one beer with another.  To be honest, it hadn't really occurred to me that a bad could be saved by mixing the right blend.  It was process that I always just associated with wines and meads.  I plan to sit and work with blending on a regular basis now, but I figure it will take some time before I'll do it well.

I don't think the intention of blending should be to save a bad beer as much as it is to create something that could not have otherwise been made or to fine tune.  A bad beer blended with a good beer = wasting good beer to create mediocre beer.
I make a hefewiezed where I ferment half the batch with WLP 300 at a higher temp and the other half with WLP 380 at a lower temp.  When I blend these two together I feel like I get an expression of banana and clove that is more pronounced.
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Offline davidgzach

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Re: Homebrew Book Topics
« Reply #23 on: October 18, 2011, 11:24:14 AM »
I'm pretty sure my LHBS carries sorghum malt.

What is the name?  I have not been able to find it anywhere.  You sure it's not extract?
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Offline roguenationpatriot

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Re: Homebrew Book Topics
« Reply #24 on: October 18, 2011, 12:01:50 PM »
I don't think the intention of blending should be to save a bad beer as much as it is to create something that could not have otherwise been made or to fine tune.  A bad beer blended with a good beer = wasting good beer to create mediocre beer.
I make a hefewiezed where I ferment half the batch with WLP 300 at a higher temp and the other half with WLP 380 at a lower temp.  When I blend these two together I feel like I get an expression of banana and clove that is more pronounced.

      I agree that the objective is to make the best beer possible.  The reason we were discussing in that manner is that we did a tasting session of a beer with a low ph that still had some potential to be greatly improved with some blending.  It would nice to only have to deal with good beer in blending, but I would say if you can save a entire batch by adding a little extra you might be able to come out with two good beers.  Anyway, I can see where your coming from, but I think it's a good idea to keep an open mind to blending a bad beer in certain situations.
« Last Edit: October 18, 2011, 01:17:27 PM by dbeechum »
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21st Amendment Back In Black
Dogfish Head 90 Min IPA
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