Mouthfeel, or the mouth feel of a beer, is the mouth’s perception of the body of a beer and is typically described as light, medium, or full. A beer’s body is formed from the residual proteins, minerals, salts’ and unfermented sugars that remain in the finished beer. The body of a beer is perceived as viscosity or thickness by the mouth. Each style of beer has a coinciding expectation for mouthfeel, and beers are rated on that expectation. For instance, a lager or pilsner should have a light body, and an imperial stout should have a full body if brewed correctly.
The lag phase is the period of time in which yeast adapts to the new fermentation environment and undergoes significant reproduction. Depending on the state of the yeast (reactivated, chilled, or dried), health of the yeast cells, variety of yeast, amount of dissolved oxygen available in the wort, temperature of the wort, and amount of available fermentable sugars, the lag phase may last anywhere from 2 to 24 hours. The lag phase begins as soon as the yeast is introduced into the wort and very little CO2 or alcohol is produced while it is active.
The shorter the lag time, the better, so that the desired yeast has a chance to take control of the wort before unwanted bacteria or wild yeast strains do.There are several ways to decrease your lag time, including:
- Creating a yeast starter
- Rehydrating dried yeast
- Keeping your yeast and wort at the correct temperature when pitching the yeast and continuing to monitor temperature until the lag phase has ended.
- Well-aerating your wort so that the yeast will have enough oxygen available.
- Pitching enough yeast for the gravity of your wort.
The term noble hops refers to either German Tettnang, German Hallertauer, German Spalt or Czech Saaz hops. These noble hop varieties are all classified as aroma hops and have a relatively balanced alpha and beta acid ratio, which allows them to impart a subtle bitterness and full aroma. Each of these hops has a long tradition in brewing and is named after the region that it was originally cultivated in.
German Tettnang Hop, Alpha Acid 3.5-5.5%, Beta Acid 5-6%
German Hallertau Hop, Alpha Acid 3-5%, Beta Acid 4-5.5%
German Spalt Hop, Alpha Acid 4-5.5%, Beta Acid 4-5
Czech Saaz Hop, Alpha Acid 3-4.5%, Beta Acid 3-4%