Does Biab Make Extract Redundant?

Australia & New Zealand Homebrewing Forum

Help Support Australia & New Zealand Homebrewing Forum:

loikar

Well-Known Member
Joined
8/12/08
Messages
989
Reaction score
0
Knowing full well that this thread will probably turn into a derailed barrage of contradictory opinions and irrelevant information....

I read in another thread that moving from K&K to all Extract or K&Bits is now redundant due to the ease of BIAB (cant remember the exact term used).
Having moved from extracts to a 3v System myself, i've never even witnessed a BIAB Brewday, im curios as to how true this is.

How much time does it take to make a 20L BIAB compared to an all extract with some steeping?
What are the cost differences between setting up the two when first starting?
How much difference is there between the resulting beer?

I know time may be a factor, but realistically, what's the difference?

Cheers,

Andy
 

MarkBastard

Well-Known Member
Joined
19/5/08
Messages
3,857
Reaction score
49
Guessing they mean a Maxi-BIAB or whatever.

My brewing journey went something like:

All extract + steep >>> partial mash + extract >>> full volume BIAB in an urn

In my experience all extract + steep is easier than partial mash. Shorter brewday and way less can go wrong. Full volume BIAB in an urn I found the easiest, but only because my urn has a tap and an inbuilt element. Surely a maxi-biab in the same pot you'd do an extract or partial in is 'harder' than extract/partial.

But the difference between all these brews is probably overstated. BIAB All grain isn't that hard, not to the extent that you need to use other methods as 'training wheels'.
 

Baulko Brewer

Well-Known Member
Joined
29/3/11
Messages
92
Reaction score
1
+1 for MB
My process was exactly the same. I use a 30l birko.

From the time I turn on the urn to the time I have cleaned up the gear is just a little short of 4 hours. Time is spent waiting for the Urn to reach mash temps and also raising temp from mash to boil.

Only other cost from doing partials to BIAB was the voile and bought a cheap urn for $60


Have a great Christmas everybody :icon_cheers:
 

mxd

Well-Known Member
Joined
26/10/09
Messages
2,434
Reaction score
212
for me, K+K -> BIAB -> 4V (HERMS)

when I went BIAB


50 ltr urn (no element) $50
1 2200 W element $50
1x 2400 w element $120
1 x pillow case $35

Total $255


It would take me about 4.5 hrs to do a 22 ltr batch.


cheers
Matt
 

Pistol

Well-Known Member
Joined
19/12/10
Messages
263
Reaction score
12
Starting BIAB after the new year, been doing extract for the last few months, I don't think BIAB will take me any longer than extract.
 

Xarb

Well-Known Member
Joined
10/9/10
Messages
54
Reaction score
0
I went straight from kits to pure extract to BIAB.

I found it a good progression. First get the sanitation and fermenting right. Then do a boil and add hops. Then add grains.

Cost breakdown for BIAB:
19L Big W pot: $19
Voile for bag: $1.50

Cost $20.50.

Of course this increases if you don't have a thermometer or scales.

BIAB definitely takes longer than extract, but if you are doing a partial it is probably similar.
 

tavas

Well-Known Member
Joined
9/3/10
Messages
826
Reaction score
183
I looked at it like this: if I'm steeping grains, I may as well be mashing. If I'm boiling hops in a small pot I may as well do a full boil.

But to answer the question, no it does not make extract redundant. If you haven't got the cold side of brewing correct (fermentation, sanitation etc) then jumping to BIAB (or any AG method) will not improve your beers.

Extract is a way of using a consistent base malt. So it will give new brewers an idea of how hop flavour can contribute for instance, or how spec grains interact.

BIAB or any AG allows the brewer full control over their ingredients (freshness, type, mash schedule) but the trade off for flexibility is many more things to go wrong.

BIAB is pretty easy to do, takes little gear (see Nick's thread) and still allows a brewer access to the flexibility of AG. But extract still allows some control over ingredient selection.

Do the beers taste better? Purely subjective. What I think my best BIAB beer tastes like may not meet your palate and vice versa. However I will add: a mate of mine brews extract and has done over 150 brews. I've only done 20 BIAB brews but he did comment that AG makes a big difference to taste, so it is possible that BIAB MAY taste better, but if you don't control the cold side, then no method will improve your beer.
 

bignath

"Grains don't grow up to be chips, son"
Joined
3/11/08
Messages
2,611
Reaction score
40
Personally i dont think any process makes any other process redundant. Sure there are better ways to make a higher quality product but that doesnt mean that there isnt a place for the others, regardless of diminished quality and costs taken into account.

Im an all grain brewer, have been for several years now. My dad likes my beer. My dad appreciates im all hardcore with this hobby and all facets of it intrigue me.
He is not like that. Hes been brewing for a decade or so (as i have) but doesnt share the same enthusiasm or passion for learning about and making beer. Hes a K&K brewer. He has more spare time than me to brew but is ultimately happy with his return vs efforts of his beer making.

Do i prefer my beers? Yeah i do, and by a long shot too. I like my beers with a decent whack of flavour usually (occasionally brew something bland for the mates etc...) and the ag process allows me to fine tune my recipes for how i like them. He doesnt want to spend the same amount of time brewing as i do. No problem with that at all.

Whilst i think that a good all gain beer will tear an excellent extract beer to shreads, i recognise that not everyone has the same amount of emotional, mental, and financial investment that we as brewers choose to throw at our beer.
 

Nick JD

Blah Blah Blah
Joined
4/11/08
Messages
7,322
Reaction score
455
I don't reckon anything makes anything else redundant.

Did BIAB make 3V redundant? Nup.

Every method has its advantages. Extract is easy in that you don't have to mess with grain. Sure, you still have to boil for bitterness ... but you don't have hardly the same cleanup or have to mill kgs.

The easiest method of making beer is driving to Dan Murphys, but that's missing the point. To some people (me included) this is more than a way to get pissed cheap; it's a hobby.
 

Philthy79

Well-Known Member
Joined
17/10/08
Messages
126
Reaction score
3
I dont think it makes it redundant either... I knocked up a quick extract 3 weeks ago (Neils Centanarillo)for an extra something on tap; an hour max to knock together.
 

Mikedub

Well-Known Member
Joined
29/6/10
Messages
458
Reaction score
63
From the time I turn on the urn to the time I have cleaned up the gear is just a little short of 4 hours.
Thats pretty good, its about 4 hrs for me (BIAB 40l urn) from start of mash,
roughly 1.5 hrs mash + mash out
15-20min raise to boil
+ boil 1.5 hrs
20 min whirlpool + cube
+ 40 min cleaning

next day another 30 min transferring, pitching, cleaning

not mashing and having less water to heat I reckon extract + 20min steep on the side during the boil would take about an 1.5 hrs out of that, maybe more with a better quality can opener,
having said that, I love AG, the mash is the building block for your beer, doughing in 5kg of grain still gives me a woody
 

RdeVjun

Well-Known Member
Joined
19/1/09
Messages
2,340
Reaction score
172
No. They're just different means to manufacture wort.
Presuming by 20L BIAB you mean 20L Stovetop/ Maxi-BIAB, and by extract you mean plain, non-bittered malt extract with a full hops boil, answers to those questions:
1. A 20L BIAB takes about the same as a 20L 3V, an extract is about half the time, less if you're using pre- bittered extract.
2. Cost for someone already brewing kits: Stovetop BIAB: 19L pot, sparge bucket, and voile can be done for around $30, Extract: just the pot, the 19L one would be fine.
3. Quality: Perhaps consider this- Stovetop BIAB earned six medals out of the maximum six entries permitted in BABB Annual 2011 with one 1st and two 3rd places. I think that's a fairly unambiguous result, while QABC places and AABC qualifiers would also reinforce that. As far as extract beers go, they're 'under- represented' in competitions AFAIK, but that does not necessarily mean their quality is any lower.
WRT 20L Stovetop BIAB, IMO it is really all about minimising the risk for novice brewers wanting to try AG brewing- if you're not willing to invest in gear which you don't know how to use or unsure if you're prepared to invest the time and effort to use it, perhaps even unsure if you'll like the end result, then Stovetop BIAB allows the novice brewer to try an AG method with minimal risk to find these things out. If the answer is no, its not your thing, then it didn't cost you much to find that out, but the same experience with 3V will be risking much, much more. If the answer is yes, then you can continue to develop AG skills and Stovetop techniques, or even use it as a stepping stone to another mashing method. It is not necessarily a substitute for extract brewing at all, I think that suggestion is mis- guided.
 

Diesel80

Well-Known Member
Joined
4/8/11
Messages
790
Reaction score
154
Location
Perth, WA
I dove in also,

3 kit brews over 2 weekends and then straight out for the 80L pot and 2400W OTS element.

test boil showed element alone take too long to boil for 35L in pot i had, so added a 3 ring and gas bottle. Goes ok now.

pretty $$ to get up and running but should be good for Doubles, especially if spend a few $ more for a new reg.

So far enjoying it. From start to N/C cube have achieved 3h:15m for a brew. If I include cleanup etc then it is about 4hr:00 for start to finish.

Not sure i have the heating horses for a full volume double yet but would be interesting to see how long that would take.

Also, bar 1 of my 3 kit brews, i chucked the lot. BIAB, drank the lot :p

Cheers,
D80
 

yasmani

Well-Known Member
Joined
26/11/11
Messages
61
Reaction score
0
excuse me but what this biab that everybody is having discussions with. is this like syrips or like barley grains for making beers
 

keifer33

Well-Known Member
Joined
22/3/09
Messages
1,501
Reaction score
110

yasmani

Well-Known Member
Joined
26/11/11
Messages
61
Reaction score
0
do i need to do this operation for better brewings ? i would have the fears about poisons from the chemical fabric . so what is bad about my coolbox and restarant saucepot and some kitchen buckets to pour for the boilings? somebody told me this is the best program to make the beers.
 

Spork

Well-Known Member
Joined
19/4/11
Messages
989
Reaction score
5
I know I shouldn't feed the troll... but:
The bag can be made from curtain material - which may or may not be "food grade " plastic. Mine is from CB. It is food grade nylon.
The coolbox, restarant saucepot and kitchen buckets are fine too.
More than 1 way to skin a cat. :)
 

ekul

Well-Known Member
Joined
23/4/10
Messages
1,603
Reaction score
54
The one that confuses me is the people doing partial mashes (not grain steeping). If they have to spend 4 hours doing a mash and boil and clean, why bother with adding the extract, why not just use more base malt? Its cheaper and tastes better.

I fully get that some people don't have time to do a full mash. PLus if they're happy with their beer why not? For me it would be the best thing in the world if i could make a kit taste great. I'd happily go back to kits if i could make a similar product i'm currently making at a similar price.

Extract beers for me were a little expensive. $30-40 per brew. If i was currently making extract beers but didn't have the time for AG, i'd just go down the fresh wort kit route. Less time and a great product. Edited to add~ Plus with the fresh wort kits you still get to taste a heap of different malts. I got really bored with the same malt taste in my brews.
 

Nick JD

Blah Blah Blah
Joined
4/11/08
Messages
7,322
Reaction score
455
If kit beer tasted like real beer we'd all do it.
 

Latest posts

Top