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Priming With Dme

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SJW

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What are peoples views on priming with dried malt extract? I was going to prime my Big Porter with 180grams of Dex. but the HBS bloke says no no try 190grams of DME. Now with my limited knowledge i know enough now to get mt Dextrose levels pretty good but 190grams of DME sounds a bit light on. IS it worth the risk of under/overcarbonating a potential great beer by using DME?
 
J

Jovial_Monk

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I prime, when I prime, with wheat malt extract, aids head rentention

Bulk priming is by far the easiest method with DME.

I only use 1/3-1/2 cup. For hefeweizens prime with 180g WDME, for any other beers that would be too fizzy, try 100g. You make nice beers, don't hide the fine taste with lots of fizz, leave that to the megaswillers

Jovial Monk
 

PostModern

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I use DME almost exclusively to prime. I find the bubbles are finer and the head has a nice compact foam when using DME.

I've found that wheat malt in the mash is the best for maintaining head, hence no need to source wheat extract just for priming. Graham (sp?) Saunders reckons a cupful of plain wheat flour in the mash achieves good results too. It's just the wheat proteins that help head stability, so an unmalted ground grain (flour) should achieve that if you have sufficient diastatic power in the base malt to convert all the starches.

11g per litre is right on the spot for bulk-priming a standard pale ale. Work up or down depending on the carbonation level you're after and if the extract potential of your malt differs from Bintani Light DME and if your FG is particularly high. In my last porter I used about 9-10g per litre (iirc it was about 185g for 20litres in the bottle) FG was 1.016. Carbonation was fine.
 

SJW

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I am assuming that the Bintani DME has 75% apparent attenuation like the Munton stuff i will be using?
 

PostModern

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SJW said:
I am assuming that the Bintani DME has 75% apparent attenuation like the Munton stuff i will be using?
I'd guess that's close enough, but attenuation and extract potential are different things. Attenuation is how much of the available sugar a yeast can consume, as opposed to extract potential being the amount of gravity points added to water by a fermentable.
 

Kai

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Is there any reason why priming with DME would provide any superior head to just including the equivalent amount of DME during fermentation and priming with dextrose?
 

PostModern

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Yes, because it is the fermentation of the DME in the bottle producing the positive CO2 pressure for carbonation. EDIT: possibly the slower fermentation of DME leads to smoother bubbles as the CO2 is absorbed over a longer time. Kinda like the difference between rapid and slow gassing up of a keg.
 

Kai

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For the first part, I meant with using alternative sugars for carbonation. On the latter, how does speed of CO2 production affect bubble size? I would think that the composition of the beer itself would be the biggest issue and bubble size would be determined at nucleation (ie opening the bottle) only. The provisio being that the beer has had enough time for the CO2 to dissolve completely into solution; does the length of time in the bottle effect the fineness of the bead?
 

Jazman

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i reckon that bitani dme is crap i prefer the muntond dme
 

PostModern

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Jazman said:
i reckon that bitani dme is crap i prefer the muntond dme
I use between 20 and 100% Bintani DME in my brews. I find it leaves a bit of a bitter/astringent taste that I don't like, but it's not a show stopper. However at $110 a bag compared to $190 for Muntons, I'm not shifting soon. I'd be more likely to shift back to LME! Anyway, AG is just over the horizon.

Kai Good points. I hadn't really thought about why I preferred DME for priming over dextrose/sucrose. Got into the habit when I was into rheinheitsgebbot in a big way :D Perhaps noticing smaller bubbles was because of something else I did at the same time? However I can't help wondering why do "crash carbonated" keg beers have a different bead to slowly carbonated ones? Seems to be linked to the rate of CO2 uptake.
 

RobW

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PoMo,
Does it take longer for the DME primed bottles to carbonate than dextrose ones ?
 

Kai

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I've never had the opportunity to compare a crash-carbonated get with a regular one, PoMo, but I'll take your word on that one.

I've got a pale ale in bottle that I had racked and left for a week before bottling to settle. It's doing the secondary really slowly, so I'll see if there's any difference in head. I usually prime with dextrose as I want to keep the introduction of further sediment to a minimum.
 

PostModern

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KenEasy said:
PoMo,
Does it take longer for the DME primed bottles to carbonate than dextrose ones ?
I think so.

As I've said, I normally prime with DME. After 2 weeks, they're generally primed, before 2 weeks, flat. My last bottled batch (Irish Red) I primed with dextrose, mainly to keep the beer as thin as possible. It's been in the bottle less than a week and is pretty much as carbonated as I expect it to be. Head retension is crap, but that's probably because it's still green... and thin. FG was below 1.010

I think there are a lot of factors. I might prime half my next batch with dextrose and the other with DME just to see the difference. Will report back in a couple weeks.
 

RobW

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PostModern said:
I think there are a lot of factors. I might prime half my next batch with dextrose and the other with DME just to see the difference. Will report back in a couple weeks.
I agree. I did just that with a stout on Saturday. I can certainly see improvement in the quality of the head over time when priming with dextrose - it becomes creamier with a tighter bead. I suspect the slower fermentation with DME may be one reason it gives a similiar effect. I'll let you know what happens.
 

Jazman

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PoMo good to see u coming over to the dark side or ag it a lot of fun
 

PostModern

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Jazman, the intention has always been there. Time to get all the gear together and the extra time for brewing sessions has put me off a bit - as has not having a LHBS. I have a LHBS now, and the locals are training him up a bit (he was/is a k'n'k man)... should be cool.

All I really need to get going is a wort chiller and a 3 ring burner. Both pretty easy to work out :)
 

Jazman

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that the worst part getting the gear together it does take a while
 

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