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Beer Brewing Question (Ice Beer Content)

Beer Brewing Question (Ice Beer Content)
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  • Beer Brewing Question (Ice Beer Content)

    Post #1 - January 19th, 2009, 6:01 pm
    Post #1 - January 19th, 2009, 6:01 pm Post #1 - January 19th, 2009, 6:01 pm
    All- I figure this goes here more than in the cooking area. I'm interviewing for a job (internship) with MillerCoors in the coming days and I've made it my goal to know basically everything about their company I can, including how their beers are brewed.

    I'm very familiar with lager style brewing, but I'm not as familiar with ice beer brewing. Is the primary difference that the wort is frozen, water that freezes to the top is skimmed and then rewarmed to make a higher alcohol beer? I couldn't get a sense from what I found exactly when in brewing this happens?

    Thanks in advance.
    is making all his reservations under the name Steve Plotnicki from now on.
  • Post #2 - January 19th, 2009, 6:26 pm
    Post #2 - January 19th, 2009, 6:26 pm Post #2 - January 19th, 2009, 6:26 pm
    From what I can tell, "Ice beer" is a marketing term for a lawnmower beer with a slightly higher alcohol content.
    Randy Mosher, Chicagoan, and author of Tasting Beer and Radical Brewing wrote:The TTB considers it {i.e. freezing beer to remove water} distillation, as it involves concentration of alcohol. No prohibition of the product here, just on making it in US breweries.

    The ice beers made by the industrial breweries a while back had to be re-diluted back to their original strength, so it was just a marketing gimmick. Actually, they were slightly stronger dry ( super high attenuation) beers.

    Pete Crowley, Brewmaster, Rock Bottom Brewery, 1 W. Grand, Chicago wrote:Randy is correct. Any increase in alcohol under a brewer's license has to be from the yeast. This is becoming an issue with barrel aged beer [which involves water evaporation} and in CA they are now taxing it like a distillate. Almost 200 bucksper bourbon barrel in added taxes. Ouch. We are required to submit a 'statement of process' for any beer we make and this is to include how the 'alcohol' is made. If we freeze it, distill it or add booze to it there is an issue. It also has to be a certain percentage of barley per our license. Hope this clears things up!

    Eisbock and other beers produced overseas may not be subject to the same restrictions on their processes.

    Words in curly quotes are my own, to clear up the context of the discussion.
  • Post #3 - January 19th, 2009, 8:32 pm
    Post #3 - January 19th, 2009, 8:32 pm Post #3 - January 19th, 2009, 8:32 pm
    Thanks :) If I get the gig I'll buy you a beer. Leinenkugel of your choice.
    is making all his reservations under the name Steve Plotnicki from now on.
  • Post #4 - January 19th, 2009, 8:36 pm
    Post #4 - January 19th, 2009, 8:36 pm Post #4 - January 19th, 2009, 8:36 pm
    I'll buy you a beer if you can use the term "lawnmower beer" in the interview and still get the job.
  • Post #5 - January 19th, 2009, 11:36 pm
    Post #5 - January 19th, 2009, 11:36 pm Post #5 - January 19th, 2009, 11:36 pm
    I swear I've read freeze distillation is not illegal, so far as it doesn't concentrate the alcohol more than a certain percentage. Now, I cannot find a source for that, so maybe I imagined it, but I did find this:

    This is a section from Dennis Davison's article "Eisbock: The Original
    Ice Beer" (_Zymurgy_ vol 18 no. 5 Fall 1995) that addresses this issue:
    Is it Legal?

    Are homebrewers "distilling" or "freeze distilling" and
    thereby breaking the law, if they make an eisbock in the
    traditional manner by freezing beer and removing ice to
    increase the alcohol content and enhance the flavors?
    According to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms
    officials, the process of freezing beer and removing ice
    is called concentrating. A brewer may not employ any
    process of concentration that separates alcohol spirits
    from any fermented beverage, and since *ice* is being
    removed from *beer* (author's emphasis), this concentration
    process is legal.


    From what I've been able to dig up on the web, "ice" beer (first developed by Labbat) are different from eisbocks. Eisbocks can undergo a significant increase in alcohol (up to 10% or so), while "ice" beers usually only gain a half percent in alcohol, and sometimes none.

    Also, a cite here:

    Ice Beer

    Eisbock is different from so-called "ice beer," a fad brew that was "invented" by Labbat's of Canada in 1993. It captivated a certain market segment and was imitated quickly by all the major industrial breweries before its popularity began to slip. Ice beer lacks the Eisbock's strength and maltiness, but it has one production step in common with the Bavarian original: After fermentation, both beers are cooled down to a temperature of at least -25°F (4°C). At this temperature the water in the beer solidifies into tiny crystals like slush. But this is where the similarity ends.

    While the Canadian ice beer is based on a standard North American light lager as a starting brew, the Eisbock starting brew is a potent Bockbier or, more likely, Doppelbock. While the Canadian frozen brew is sharply filtered, which takes out not only the ice, but also a large portion of the tannins and bittering substances derived from the hops and grain husks. Fresh water is then added to the Canadian-style ice beer to bring the alcohol level to what it was before freezing. The result is a particularly soft and mild beer, with almost no hop bitterness.
  • Post #6 - January 21st, 2009, 5:01 pm
    Post #6 - January 21st, 2009, 5:01 pm Post #6 - January 21st, 2009, 5:01 pm
    sounds like a cool job; i hope you get it! :)
  • Post #7 - January 22nd, 2009, 9:25 am
    Post #7 - January 22nd, 2009, 9:25 am Post #7 - January 22nd, 2009, 9:25 am
    Binko wrote:
    Ice Beer

    While the Canadian ice beer is based on a standard North American light lager as a starting brew, the Eisbock starting brew is a potent Bockbier or, more likely, Doppelbock. While the Canadian frozen brew is sharply filtered, which takes out not only the ice, but also a large portion of the tannins and bittering substances derived from the hops and grain husks. Fresh water is then added to the Canadian-style ice beer to bring the alcohol level to what it was before freezing. The result is a particularly soft and mild beer, with almost no hop bitterness.


    Hi,

    The goal was less flavor and less color, how wonderful.

    The process is much like "jacking" as in apple jack.

    Tim
  • Post #8 - September 26th, 2019, 6:01 pm
    Post #8 - September 26th, 2019, 6:01 pm Post #8 - September 26th, 2019, 6:01 pm
    Hi,

    Last night I went to a lecture on German beer.

    The presenter made a point a beer with a substantial foam was made with female hops. If it was less, then it was a mixture of male and female hops. Is this true?

    Regards,
    Cathy2
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #9 - September 26th, 2019, 8:01 pm
    Post #9 - September 26th, 2019, 8:01 pm Post #9 - September 26th, 2019, 8:01 pm
    Now Rising to the Top of the Beer World: Foam
    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/26/dini ... -ios-share
    Hors D'oeuvre: A ham sandwich cut into forty pieces.
    - Jack Benny
  • Post #10 - September 29th, 2019, 9:33 am
    Post #10 - September 29th, 2019, 9:33 am Post #10 - September 29th, 2019, 9:33 am
    Cathy2 wrote:Hi,

    Last night I went to a lecture on German beer.

    The presenter made a point a beer with a substantial foam was made with female hops. If it was less, then it was a mixture of male and female hops. Is this true?

    Regards,
    Cathy2


    This doesn't sound correct. Commercial hop growers only raise female hop plants. Male hops may be used by hop breeders to cross pollinate and create new varieties. But male hops are not used in beer.
  • Post #11 - September 29th, 2019, 10:09 am
    Post #11 - September 29th, 2019, 10:09 am Post #11 - September 29th, 2019, 10:09 am
    pancake wrote:But male hops are not used in beer.

    Generally true, but on rare occasions, some hops, like Cascade, can produce male flowers on otherwise female plants, and can get into beer. That may be what the presenter was referring to.
  • Post #12 - September 29th, 2019, 10:24 am
    Post #12 - September 29th, 2019, 10:24 am Post #12 - September 29th, 2019, 10:24 am
    nr706 wrote:That may be what the presenter was referring to.

    The way it was stated caught my attention. It was (superior) German beers uses only female hops and it is visibly evident from the large head.

    A beer using male and female hops was immediately evident from the obviously smaller head.

    Meanwhile, I gave a ride to another beer aficionado who commented only female hops are used, because they have the bitter component, which the male flowers do not.

    It was clearly a researched talk, which is fine. I had the feeling the person did not have anywhere near the depth of knowledge I regularly experience here.

    Once I get a clear answer, I will go back to suggest they may want to reconsider this part of the talk. I get corrected all the time, so I doubt this person will mind.

    Regards,
    CAthy2
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #13 - September 30th, 2019, 1:17 am
    Post #13 - September 30th, 2019, 1:17 am Post #13 - September 30th, 2019, 1:17 am
    Many other factors, such as protein structure, and any surfactants remaining in the glass, can have much more impact on head retention than hops.

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