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Old 11-14-2012, 10:20 PM   #61
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Serious question: How many people would actually be interested in more technical posts, involving calculations and whatnot? I would not mind sharing some of my notes, if there is an interest.

Boy o boy have I been busy, now that our major tests are finished I have some time to sit back, relax and go over all that has happened in the previous weeks. When I last sat down to write, it was just after the week-long break. Since then I've had a major midterm (brewing ingredients), a challenge test in sensory evaluation (finally), been given new assignments and worked on old ones, and brewed in the teaching brewery (today!). Where to begin?

The midterm for brewing ingredients was wildly different than I had expected. Perhaps through a misunderstanding we were lead to believe that the midterm would be all inclusive, from day one up until the date of the test. As such, I spent a lot of time studying the many different lectures as well as various readings. I was, therefore, surprised to see that the test was mostly on hops. I was expecting there to be hops on the test, but was not expecting it to be a majority shareholder in the venture. Needless to say, I was not the only one who wasn't expecting this. I did review hops but maybe not as thoroughly as I should have. We were given a few charts with different hop breakdowns and asked what they would contribute to the finished beer in different situations. I should have brushed up on what all the different hop oils do to a beer, as I found myself at a bit of a loss. I managed to come up with answers but it will be interesting to see how I did when I get my test back next week.

The flavor standards arrived at the college, finally! We are now able to actually physically taste the defects we have been talking about for so many weeks, and put our sensory training to use. We had the joy of tasting defects such as Metallic (think iron, or the taste you get when you accidentally bite your cheek) which I found to be more of a strong aroma than flavor. If you think your beer may be tainted with Metallic properties, there is a trick to identifying it: dip your fingers in the beer and rub it on the back of your palm, then smell. It will smell like pennies if your beer has been tainted. Another thing we tasted was earthiness. DO NOT LET YOUR BEER GET THIS CONTIMINANT. This was probably the most disgusting thing I have ever smelt coming from a beer. Think of digging in the earth after a rainstorm. This is what the beer smells like. It does not have much effect on the taste, but the aroma is severely off-putting. Some other taints we tasted were DMS (cooked vegetable smell), Diacetyl (movie theater popcorn) and a few others that I can't recall at the moment. We were then tested on our ability to identify these flavors in a blind tasting. Somehow I managed to get a perfect score, which although impressive sounding doesn't mean much as most of my classmates were able to do the same (I suppose it just means we are an awesome group of future brewers and all defects should fear us). This week class was cancelled and I need to get started on my presentation. Two classmates and myself will be doing a 20 minute presentation on the IPA beer style, which of course includes a tasting.

Today I was in the teaching brewery for the third time this semester. My partner and I were brewing a malt-forward beer to compare to the ones brewed over the past 2 weeks by the other groups. We used a pretty basic recipe, somewhere along the lines of 8kg pale ale malt, 2kg Maris Otter and then 1kg of the specialty malt. Although the name escapes me I believe it was some kind of french roasted malt coming in at around 150L. It smelled like burnt toast as we were mashing in, and the color was a rich dark brown. We brewed the lightest (color wise) of the 3, so I am excited to see how it turns out, and how the others are as well. We are supposed to do a side by side comparison in Sensory Evaluation, one of these days.
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Old 11-15-2012, 01:15 AM   #62
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Dude the more info you share with us, the better.

If you brew something particularly awesome, if you're allowed, perhaps share the recipe with us so we can brew along with ya.

Cheers!

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Old 11-15-2012, 01:29 AM   #63
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I subscribed to get it all, hit me with details! I get a diploma at the end of this, right?

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Old 11-15-2012, 02:19 AM   #64
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You can have an honorary brewmaster diploma, created by me, if you are still following at the end of two years. You can hold me to that.

I will share more technical information, and I will share what recipes I can.

I forgot how tough school can be, why did no one warn me?!?

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Old 11-15-2012, 03:18 AM   #65
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First time seeing this thread. Congrats to you and I'll be eagerly following along.

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Old 11-15-2012, 04:32 AM   #66
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I'm in for all the info you're willing to share. Thanks for taking us along on this ride.

Cheers!

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Old 11-15-2012, 11:34 AM   #67
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I'm in for the honorary diploma,

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Old 11-15-2012, 02:10 PM   #68
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*For anyone interested in learning how to identify off flavors*

Go to http://www.flavoractiv.com/2012/02/n...flavorfiles-2/ and download the flavorfiles. These are what we use in our sensory evaluation class to study different off flavors. The flavorfiles will give you tips on how to identify the taint as well as possible sources.
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Old 11-27-2012, 10:30 PM   #69
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I am currently in Sensory Evaluation watching presentations on beer styles. My group presented first on IPAs, with a sampling of Mad Tom IPA from Muskoka brewery. The second group presented Bitters and we tasted the schools Butler's Bitter and Granite Brewery ( from Toronto)'s Best bitter. Current group presenting on wheat beers and we are wrapping up the class with Triples. So many samples, so delicious. Next week the final 4 groups will present.

Since last update we've had a few new assignments assigned and some tests to study for. We are coming up on the end of the first semester (December 14) and there is still plenty to do.

In the spirit of full disclosure I am a little tipsy from the samples, so excuse any errors in my grammar. Cheers!

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Old 11-27-2012, 10:49 PM   #70
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EricR View Post
identify the taint
Lol... Sorry, you can have your thread back now.
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