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Can I Improve This Mini Mash?

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fourlambs

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Hello all,

Early this year a colleague gave me the following recipe for a 'mini mash'. I have used it a couple of times with reasonable results [its better than the kits!] but i am wondering whether its possbile to fine tune it to make even better? I am happy with the overall flavour profile. Maybe i could try different hop types ?

Ingredients:

3 lts Water
280g Crystal Malt
14g Choc Malt

Boil water, steep crystal and choc malt grains for 30mins at 67'c, no higher than 75'c.

Strain liquid, disgard grains, reboil so sterile.

Added:

25gm Fuggles hops boil 30 mins

Then Added:

25gm Cascade hops boil 15mins

Add liquid to fermenter barrel with 3kg Thomas Coopers light malt, top up to 23lts, then added another 25gm Cascade hops [dry hopping] and 11.5gm yeast.


Appreciate the feedback....


Phil
 

QldKev

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Overall it doesn't seem to have much bittering? The IBU would be pretty low.
Extract brews are a great way to start playing with grains, but they always taste like an extract brew. Have a read on here about Nick JD's All Grain for under $30. All Grain would make a great change to the beer.


How many days will you be dry hopping for? I would leave it until the main ferment is virtually over then add them.
What yeast? ref next point, but if you have temp controlling I would use a decent yeast.
What temp for fermenting? targeting the yeast strain temps and maintaining a stable temp makes a great difference.


QldKev
 

fourlambs

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Thanks QldKev,

The brew usually sits in the barrel for about 2 weeks before bottling, at ambient - 16 - 20'c depending on weather. The dry hopping is for the duration.

I use Safele US05 for this beer. Your comment around the bittering is interesting as this is one attribute i'd like to increase slighly. Is this where the all grain technique comes in to play?

Cheers

Phil
 

RdeVjun

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I'm with QldKev, seems to be quite low on bittering, probably bordering on zilch noticeable bitterness and that's hardly beer! Perhaps this has been adapted from a recipe that uses a tin of pre- hopped malt (i.e. a kit)? If that's the case you'll really have to get a bittering addition in there to compensate.
As far as processing the grain goes, I wouldn't bother boiling the water to begin with unless perhaps there's loads of chlorine in it (nb. won't have any effect on chloramine). Steep in warm water (temp not important for most specialty grains), strain and boil the liquor, add hops as per the schedule and then dump into the fermenter.
 

QldKev

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The longer you boil the hops the more bitter they become.

A rough rule is
60-90min additions for bittering
15-30min additions for flavour
<10min for aroma

Not sure if you know the terminology but
AA% = Alpha Acid % = the bittering % of the hop = the more bitter they become
IBU = International Bittering Unit = Scale of how much bitterness is in the beer
so a rough idea is, AA% x how much hops x time boiled = IBU
(google IBU and you should get some better descriptions)

All additions will give you some perceived bitterness. So you could try and up the 30min addition or use higher AA% hops to get more bitterness. More hops at 30min would mean more hop flavour. Otherwise (and what I would do) you could boil the extract for 60mins and throw in some additional hops at 60mins.

I would get some brew software and have a play in it.
Brewmate, I've never used it but has a lot of users and is free
Beersmith, I use, but cost money. (you can get a free evaluation version) If looking for software again I would probably try Beermate first.
There is other software out there.

Once you have the software you enter in your recipe and then can try adding different hop additions at 60mins to see how it effects the IBU.

Hope this helps

QldKev
 

fourlambs

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Thanks all, but excuse my lack of knowledge...

The Bittering is increased through extended boiling or alternate hops or something else?

I am confused now!
 

QldKev

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Thanks all, but excuse my lack of knowledge...

The Bittering is increased through extended boiling or alternate hops or something else?

I am confused now!
Not sure if you posted this as I posted mine. Boiling hops longer will change flavor compounds into bitter compounds. Of you can start with hops with a higher AA%.

I would leave the rest of your additions as are and do a 60min boil and throw in some at 60mins.

QldKev
 

fourlambs

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Thanks QLD Kev,

Its been a malted arvo and smells good! I'll let you know the outcome.



Cheer Phil
 

AndrewQLD

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Apart from the above good information I'd just point out that what you are doing is not a mini mash, you are steeping crystal and dark grains that don't need mashing at all.
A mini mash would require a base malt such as ale or pilsner or munich malt ect. that does require a 60 minute mash at around 66c in order to convert the starches to fermentable sugars.

What you are doing is steeping the grains that have already undergone a degree of conversion in order to extract the sugars already present.
 

Nick JD

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Beer is all about slowly changing things through chemical and biological actions.

Starches are slowly changed to sugars in the mash; compounds are isomerised in the boil making them bitter and flavours are driven off; sugars are metabolised into alcohol in the fermenter.

Learning the basics of each of these processes (and indeed the complexities of them) will make your beer outstanding.
 

chefsantos

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I agree more hop and maybe a longer boil time. plus try using Wyeast its much better then dried yeast
 

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