From the HBD Archive
From: Dave Sheehy <dbs@hprnd>
Subject: homebrew tuning
Date: 1989-06-05 18:06:24 GMT

Types of Yeast

I have been brewing for about a year and have been noticing a
funny kind of musty underlying flavor to my homebrew that I do
not find entirely pleasant. It's been a constant over the varieties
of beer I've been making (from pilseners to Doppelbocks) so I know
that it's not a function of the extracts, grains, and hops I've been
using. So it's either my brewing process or another alternative is the
type of yeast I've been using. I read with interest a previous posting
that said that Red Star was not a very good yeast in that author's
opinion. Well as it turns out I've been using Red Star in nearly all
the 10 - 12 batches I've made so far. I have used Edme a couple of times
but I didn't have the presence of mind to write down the brand of yeast
I used for some of my earlier attempts. Coincidentally, I've been thinking
of experimenting with different types of yeasts to see how they affect
the final product. To get to the point of all this, what are people's
preferences in types of yeast? At this point I'm mostly interested in
ale yeasts although I am interested in lagers too (mostly as used in
making Doppelbocks).

Lagering Experimentation

I made a couple of pilseners and doppelbocks just by fermenting at room
temperature (whatever that happens to be at the time) and would like to
experiment with lagering to see how the flavor is affected. I don't have
a second refrigerator to use for the lagering step however. I have thought
that I could experiment next fall and winter by lagering the wort in my
garage. Where I live it doesn't get below freezing at night until January.
Is this a valid experiment? The garage temperature is going to vary somewhat
during the day. How important is it to maintain a constant temperature?


Sweeter Beers

My taste in beer runs towards the sweeter varieties. I have been unable to
duplicate the sweetness of the beer at the microbreweries I've frequented.
I talked to one of the brewers at the Triple Rock microbrewery in Berkeley
and he said that they interrupt primary fermentation prematurely in order
to retain a sweetness in the flavor of their beer. I've now realized that
they must also either pastuerize the wort to kill the yeast of filter the
yeast out to avoid additional fermentation. I suppose that their beer might
be consumed quickly enough for the above steps to be ignored and not
matter much. David Line states in one of his books that homebrew tends to
be drier than commercial breweries. He therefore includes saccharin in
recipes where he is trying to duplicate the sweetness of the brew he is
trying to copy (since saccharin doesn't ferment). I haven't actually tried
any of his recipes that include saccharin yet. Does anybody have any
suggestions on how to control the sweetness of the final brew?

Good Book Past "Papazian".

I have bought and read Papazian's book on home brewing. I also have
David Line's book, Brewing_Beers_Like_Those_You_Buy (mainly because it
has a recipe for John Courage). The question is what is a good book that
takes up where Papazian's book left off?

David Sheehy

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