Brew Files – Episode 51 – Real Time Recipe Challenge

The Brew is Out There!

We asked our listeners to challenge us – give us a beer idea you want us to design and prepare to make. Out of the pile of suggestions we each chose one recipe to challenge the other with. In this inaugural challenge, we only find out what recipe we’re supposed to formulate right then. Listen to us walk you through how we’d tackle these challenges.

And congrats to Aaron Kennison and Eric Pierce who’ll be receiving a half pound of Yakima Chief Hops’ Veteran’s Blend!

Want to listen to the podcast? Please click… HERE!

Esters vs. Phenols in Beer

When perceiving certain aromas of beer, you may hear people refer to “esters” and “phenols.” These terms are often times used incorrectly or interchangeably. The fact of the matter is, esters and phenols are quite different, though they can be present at the same time. Let’s take a look at some of the main causes of esters and phenols in beer.


The fruity aromas perceivable in beer are typically generated by yeast esters, unless there’s actual fruit in the recipe. During fermentation, a reaction between organic acids present in the wort and the developing alcohol cause esters to form. Common aromatic ester characteristics include banana, pear drop, apple, honey, roses and even solvent-like in some instances.

While the reaction between the acids and alcohol actually form esters, three variables influence the amount of esters that can potentially develop. By understanding and managing these variables, homebrew…


Want to read more? Please click… HERE!

The Score: Von Trapp German Helles

Judges: Millie and Ken Carman/BJCP Certified

This brew never specified what version of Helles this was. The decision made: 5C German Helles

Judge 1: Millie (Used guidelines)
Judge 2: Ken (Did NOT use guidelines)

Both judges noted a low fill.

Judge 1 found a light floral aroma, judge 2 more herbal; as in oregano-like. Both found typical lager year sulfur notes. Judge 1 found a hint of sweet malt in the aroma. Judge 2 found a DMS/corn sense as might be expected with the malt and some lagers. Not overboard. He also found some diacetyl.

Judge 1 and 2 found a white head with a mix of big and small bubbles except judge 2 found foam instead of small bubbles. Judge 1 found the entry acceptably clear, judge 2 tad hazy. Judge 1 called it golden in color, judge 2 light gold to yellow. Judge 1 thought head was low, judge 2 didn’t, both thought it didn’t persist that long. Judge 2: glass cling to foam.

Both judges thought malty sweet dominated a little, judge 2 described it as “crackery.” Judge 2 found the bitter only expressed itself much when sample warmed. Judge 2 thought malt persisted, judge 1 thought bitter persisted in the finish. Judge 1 found a spicy hop sense, judge 2 thought it slight and more background except when it warmed. Judge 2 found some diacetyl, though not a lot, judge 1 found it after discussion and it warmed

Judge 1 thought carbonation a bit light for style, judge 2 thought it medium so not bad for style. No astringency/warmth/creaminess (both). Judge 2 thought the body low side of medium and thought malt persisted on top of palate at end. Judge 1 commented about water profile, judge 2 who wasn’t using guidelines did not.

Both found the sample to be representative of the style, judge 2 commented that even though he was no fan of the style he would have 2 but no more due to that stylistic reluctance. Judge 1 thought the entry should provide just a little more of the style-sense. Judge 2 thought more lagering would eliminate slight diacetyl.

JUDGE 1: 33 out of 50
JUDGE 2: 34 out of 50

Crux Fermentation Project: Tough Love, Lost Love, and The Snow Cave

Crux Fermentation Project is one of the three to five best breweries in the United States and they haven’t yet even hit their stride.

By Stephen Body
Big claim? Totally supported by all available evidence, including that last phrase.

When Larry Sidor left Deschutes Brewery, after an eight years that were arguably the greatest similar period of innovation by any brewer not named Steele or Calagione, Larry left to make his beers; no limits, maximum innovation, barrels, weird yeasts, even down to the water used. Larry had Something different in mind. Not that Deschutes maybe wouldn’t have let him try all that there but…Deschutes was already an economic machine; a virtual printing press for beer revenues and Larry knew that.


Want to read more? Please click… HERE!

Brew Files – Episode 49 – Starting Off Right

We know that we need good yeast to make great beer and we need to treat them right. Somehow we’ve managed to go through 48 episodes of this show without talking methods of treating your yeast right. On this show, we’ll walk through how we used to do things and why we changed and Denny will even challenge Drew to get uncomfortable!

Want to hear more about this? Please click… HERE!

New Brewery: Various Artists, Nashville, TN

Two Nashville entrepreneurs plan to open a brewery on Elm Hill Pike not far from Fesslers Lane, my Nashville Post colleague William Williams reports. The brewery and pub will offer a menu featuring Argentine-style grilled meats.

Pat Isbey and Jeff Bergman will co-own and operate Various Artists Brewing Co., to be located at 1011 Elm Hill Pike in a building that Bergman owns. Longtime followers of Nashville’s restaurant scene may recall Isbey from the excellent barbecue spot Jimmy Carl’s Lunch Box, which he owned and operated from 2009 to 2010 in the Station Inn building in the Gulch. Isbey and Bergman are targeting a late-December opening for Various Artists Brewing.

Want to read more? Please click… HERE!

Brew Files – Episode 47 – The Bays of Portland

The Brew is Out There!

One of our favorite yeast people is back and he’s got big news! Nick Impelitteri is going full time and moving to Beervana – aka Portland – aka the new “Bay” City? In addition we talk about new toys he’s bringing to bear including a nectar loving critter that might change how you experience hops.
Want to hear more? Please click… HERE!

‘World’s oldest brewery’ found in cave in Israel, say researchers

Researchers say they have found the world’s oldest brewery, with residue of 13,000-year-old beer, in a prehistoric cave near Haifa in Israel. The discovery was made while they were studying a burial site for semi-nomadic hunter-gatherers. Brewing beer was thought to go back 5,000 years, but the latest discovery may turn beer history on its head.

Want to read more? Please click…HERE!

Cask Ale, No Frills, and Plenty of Conversation: Reinventing the English Pub for the 21st Century

The pub, or public house, is a revered institution in the United Kingdom, outweighing and outlasting even the church as an everyday part of British life. Pubs are romanticized, sentimentalized, and politicized, a nexus for conversations about gentrification and culture, and a proxy for the very state of the nation.

The ideal English pub might be an ancient rural coaching inn out of a painting by Constable, or an urban gin palace dancing with warm light reflected in mirrors and polished wood. Either way, it will probably be at least a hundred years old. New pubs were built in the 20th century—some 5,000 so-called “improved public houses” between the world wars, and around 4,000 austere modernist structures in the era of post-war reconstruction—but they tend to be less well-loved than their predecessors, lacking their dark corners and coziness.

Want to read more? Please click…HERE!

Failure to Launch a Brewery

So you’ve been brewing beer for a few years and love sharing your brews with your family, friends, neighbors, and plumber? You figure, why not share my hard work with the rest of the world, and make money while working my dream job? Many others have had the same idea. A lot of the craft breweries that you know and love today, started with a passion for home brewing. You may be familiar with some of the larger success stories (Sam Adams or Dogfish Head) but you never hear about the breweries that failed to succeed. This is my (much shortened) story of failing to launch a brewery in Toledo, OH in 2014.

Scratching the Itch to Start a Pro Brewery

Marriage is a beautiful thing isn’t it? Not when it takes you 16 hours to reach a small island off the coast of Belize. That’s where the planning of my brewery began. I had a jet lagged wife, and a lot of spare time. Besides the 2 planes, 2 taxis, and 2 ferries it took to get to this island, the wedding was pretty exhausting too. Did I mention this was my honeymoon? While my wife napped, I was curiously looking at the prices of commercial brewing systems to see it was feasible to build a brewery. They ranged from 1-7 bbl’s (barrels) and cost $10k-$90k depending on the design, aesthetics, and degree of automation. If you’re unfamiliar, 1bbl is 31 gallons. It only took a couple days for me to convince myself that I needed to open a small brewery. Besides worrying about the cost, I was also wondering where I would put all of this equipment.

Want to read more? PLEASE click HERE!