I assume that the difference between this bake and the last was due to the coarseness of the flour. However, there could have been other factors at play. One was that this was a different brand of wheat berries, although it was the same variety: Hard Red Spring Wheat. Last bake's wheat was Palouse, this was Great River. I only bought a small amount of the Palouse, but I have a 25lb. bag of Great River. So I'll be able to experiment more accurately with this big ol' bag of Great River. I also could have screwed up the measurements, but I'm usually pretty careful.
What I plan to do this week is go for a medium grind, to see if I can find the sweet spot of flour that is course enough to be strong and stand tall, and be fine enough to get more air in the bread. That is assuming that I am correct in my diagnosis that the fineness is what's influencing my outcome here.
My overall verdict is that although last week's loaves stood tall and had wicked awesome ears, this week's loaf was better tasting. Air tastes good.
I go on experimenting...
Seriously needed that headband, folks. It wasn't just for show.
Air is good!