Beer Freshness and Oxygen with Chaz Benedict- BeerSmith Podcast #80

by Brad Smith on April 25, 2014 · 6 comments

PodNew200This week my guest is Chaz Benedict, who is an expert in commercial beer freshness and reducing oxygen content in finished beer. We explore beer freshness, oxygen in beer, and ways a home brewer can create beer that is long lasting and has a stable flavor profile.

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Topics in This Week’s Episode (40:21)

  • Chaz Benedict is my guest this week from Hach company. Chaz is an expert in commercial beer freshness and oxygen in beer. He has a degree in Chrmistry from the University of California at Santa Cruz. He is also a member of the American Society of Brewing Chemist’s Technical Committee. His blog is at TapIntoHach.com
  • We discuss how Chaz moved from underwater robotic vehicles into studying beer freshness.
  • He describes some of the major contributors to beer freshness.
  • We talk about how oxygen gets into a finished beer during the fermentation and bottling process
  • Chaz explains how oxygen in the beer leads to stale beer flavors
  • We discuss how you can minimize oxygen in the beer and also the use of oxygen absorbing bottle caps
  • Chaz discusses kegging briefly and how it is used
  • We talk about CO2 purity and how pure the CO2 supply is that we may be purchasing from a CO2 supplier for kegging
  • Chaz explains other packaging considerations with beer
  • We explore the concept of sensory perception and how sensory perception drives the concept of freshness
  • Chaz provides a few additional tips for home brewers, as well as suggestions on where to learn more

Thanks to Chaz Benedict for appearing on the show and also to you for listening!

iTunes Announcements: I launched a new video channel for the BeerSmith podcast on iTunes, so subscribe now! At the moment it will only feature the new widescreen episodes (#75 and up). Older episodes are available on my revamped Youtube channel. Also all 76 audio episodes are on iTunes now – so grab the older episodes if you missed any.

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Kevin R. Tubbs April 25, 2014 at 5:12 pm

I greatly enjoyed that informative article.

This is exactly why we built in features to eliminate light and oxygen in the BeerPouch. Very well spoken on this interesting subject.

Thank you.

Allison Williams April 28, 2014 at 7:53 am

This was great indeed. I never knew there’s so much of processes involved to get the perfect brew.

Bill May 2, 2014 at 9:00 pm

Potentially needing to “pre-boil” mash water is mindblowing. Was there any suggestion on how long to boil the water in order to get an acceptable amount of O2 out of solution?
thanks,
Bill

Andy May 8, 2014 at 8:51 am

A couple of penny’s worth of thought here.

I don’t believe you need to be-boil the mash water for all grain. Maybe that’s good for extract, I’m not sure. I have been brewing all grain for 9 years and I never had a problem in this area. However, I did start a few years ago by filling my boil kettle with a pump from the bottom and not from the top to keep oxygen from entering in my pre-boil wort.

Also I’m fortunate to have obtained medical grade oxygen when my wife worked at a medical supply company so my oxygen is as pure as it can be. With an air stone I add oxygen to my post boil chilled wort for just 30 seconds before adding the yeast. I believe adding more oxygen longer will over oxygenate the beer, hinder the yeast, and add off flavors. Don’t ask me how I know! The yeast can only handle so much oxygen so be careful not to add to much oxygen. With that, I would be careful with regular air pumps and adding “unclean” air to my wort. I have a hard time thinking about injecting non-sanitized air into my wort. I think your just asking for trouble. So if you don’t have clean oxygen then just forget it all together. Fill your fermenter so as to cause a splash which will suck in oxygen and then shake your vessel as much as possible. As a matter of fact I forget to use my oxygen in my last brew session and my beer seems to be fermenting just fine.

Andy

Joshua Ellis July 2, 2014 at 3:19 pm

A) That was very informative. Thank you Brad for the educational material
B) This is minutiae, but it really really bothers me that the term “Crapshoot” (which is a reference to a Casino game) got censored. Seriously? That’s a little overboard.

Brad Smith July 6, 2014 at 1:53 am

Sorry – but to maintain my “clean” rating on iTunes, I have to censor all of the swear words out of the show.

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