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Step Mashings [my Observations]

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chiller

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Well I should be working [filing paper work] so I figured I needed a break before i started such an interesting task.

For quite a significant time now I have step mashed all of my beers and the following are my observations.

It is not a difficult procedure but will require a bit of pre planning -- more so than a single step mash.

My mash regime is reasonably standardised along the following lines

Double crush the grain at the same mill setting. Add 1/8 teaspoon dry to the grain and mix through [or add directly to the water for the first step]

38 - 40c Dough in at a very thick mix. so thick in fact that I have to mix the grain/water mix by hand. This rest is held for 30 minutes. While it is near the temperature range of an acid rest it really isn'y long enough to give the full bensfits of acid production. Some acid advantage will be gained though even at a short thick rest of 30 minutes.
The main advantage of this rest is the complete wetting of the crushed grain. After the 30 minutes it is well saturated and ready to accept the next water additions.

Water is brought to the boil to coincide with the end of each step and added a litre at a time to mix through the grain and raise the temperature. Note -- boiling water DON'T mix with your hands :)

With 5 kgs of grain raising a thick mash from 40 to 50 will require between 2 and 3 litres of boiling water. The water must remain boiling in the water vessel to minimise heat loss.

50 c This is the Protien rest and must not be any longer than 15 - 20 minutes with modern grains. Some protien breakdown will occur during this time benefitial to head retention in the final beer. Glass lacing is also improved.

I step the mash up to 62c for between 20 - 45 minutes depending on the beer I'm making. Again at this stage boiling water additions will easily reach this target temperature.

My next preferred step is 69 - 70c and I do this in my direct heated mashtun.

By preheating the water [about 3 litres] in the direct fired tun to just below boiling I can transfer the grain carefully from the 10 gallon rubbermaid and thenext step is reached very easily. Only a short extra amount of heating is required to hit the exact temperature.
This rest can be from 10 to 35 minutes depending on how you want the beer at the final stage.

George Fix recommended a 72c rest for 10 minutes to take advantage of certain enzymes that further enhance head characteristics. I have done this rest many times and while I can't notice a massive change it is not hard to do -- so I do it.

The final step is to raise the mash to 76c for a 10 minute mash out. Again I do this by direct heat.

I then Batch sparge.

As I said at the begining of this, these are my observations over perhaps 50 beers.

In Adelaide we have two private all grain groups that met on a regular basis and while I brew using this method and most of the others use single temperature mash a blind tasting may not necassarily pick one beer as better or worse than another. I brew in this manner because I enjoy the process and because my equipment allows me to achieve this type of mash schedule without any hassle.

I believe the beer has a complexity of taste i didn't achieve before. I also get a higher extraction efficiency which I feel is due to the dough in at 40c for 30 minutes.

The brewday is longer but -- invite a brew friend around and share the day.

Which ever method you mash with modern grain will give you excellent beer.

Some in our two groups ask me why :)

Why not -- I'm a homebrewer and I'm able to :)

Steve.
 

chiller

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am said:
Add 1/8 teaspoon dry to the grain and mix through

Chiller,

dry what?
[post="55415"][/post]​

Sorry -- you obviously run windows -- Linux has a mind reading open source plug in :)


1/8 teaspoon of sodium met.

Steve :)
 

jayse

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On chat the other nite i got some of the reasons out of steve way he does this.....
It all comes down to utilizing the enzymme 'iamwastingmytimease' and also the enzymme 'wankanase' plays a very important role. :D

Just stirring. :p
Jayse
 

Kai

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And I should be cleaning the kitchen so I'm glad you posted a welcoming diversion.
 

wee stu

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I added a mash out to my brew for the first time today, cos I had the use of a larger tun than normal (nod of thanks to the Alaskan bound Inebriated Beduoin).

With my normal tun mash out would be all to literal. Water in, mash out - tun overflowing :) :p
 

chiller

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jayse said:
On chat the other nite i got some of the reasons out of steve way he does this.....
It all comes down to utilizing the enzymme 'iamwastingmytimease' and also the enzymme 'wankanase' plays a very important role. :D

Just stirring. :p
Jayse
[post="55429"][/post]​

Jayse i will approach this in a psuedo scientific fashion :)

The enzyme -- wankanase

This is an enzyme that afflicts brewers more than their brew. It manifests itself usually on a saturday night in chat rooms when the brewer has consumed far more alcohol that his limited brain cell count can handle and has been know to get severe cases known as "wankers" banned from local and international chatrooms.

The enzyme -- iamwastingmytimease

As you can probably appreciate this enzyme needs to be converted by the I'mdoingthiscosIcanase enzyme with a 40c rest. It takes 30 minutes but at the end of the 30 minutes any affects of wankernase are subsiding and the enzyme -- iamwastingmytimease
is no longer a concern.

The enzyme -- iamwastingmytimease can have a severe pyschological impact on brewers that only use single infusion mashing as it is cumulative in that seeds of doubt are sown as to the fact that maybe the beer they are brewing could be better step mashed.

I know you have a good understanding of brewing practise Jayse and trust you now comprehend the dangers of the enzyme -- iamwastingmytimease on a single infusion mash

:)

Steve
 

Dunkel_Boy

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Jayse, I suggest you do some research on the alpha ugottoldase enzyme...
 

Kai

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chiller said:
The enzyme -- iamwastingmytimease

As you can probably appreciate this enzyme needs to be converted by the I'mdoingthiscosIcanase enzyme with a 40c rest. It takes 30 minutes but at the end of the 30 minutes any affects of wankernase are subsiding and the enzyme -- iamwastingmytimease
is no longer a concern.
An enzyme enzyme? The mind boggles!

Does that mean I'mdoingthiscosIcanase is technically iamwastingmytimeasease?
 

chiller

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Kai said:
chiller said:
The enzyme -- iamwastingmytimease

As you can probably appreciate this enzyme needs to be converted by the I'mdoingthiscosIcanase enzyme with a 40c rest. It takes 30 minutes but at the end of the 30 minutes any affects of wankernase are subsiding and the enzyme -- iamwastingmytimease
is no longer a concern.
An enzyme enzyme? The mind boggles!

Does that mean I'mdoingthiscosIcanase is technically iamwastingmytimeasease?
[post="55484"][/post]​

Just because you're doing food science ----- :)
 

Kai

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just don't expose me to the fartsmellerase
 

jayse

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ok you silly silly buggers lets not get carried away with nonsense.
I still maintain with the malts we use there isn't any need to worry about any other enzymme than that of the ones that rhymme with spastic.

The acid rest is a no brainer as that isn't gunna do anything with highly kilned malts as there proberly wouldn't be any phytase activity due to the fact there is none of those enzymme left after the kilning. But chiller did allready mention that he doesn't expect any acid production during that rest anyway.

The protien rest is the scary one and one iam not willing to poke a mash paddle at.
I am happy with the profilactic enzymme wankase but stuffing with the proteolytic, non proteolytic and even debranching enzymmes which are at work during the 40-60c rest I have not a problem with how they have been utilized already buy the maltsters.
I would like to see some more data re the finding of better lacing in the glass after a rest at 55c as iam not sure we could make it any better than the maltings aleady have.
Toying with a protien rest is to me like venturing into the unknown as at those temps theres quite a few different enzymmes at work and i simply don't know enough to know exactly what is happening to my wort during that rest.
In thoery i have a desent understanding of what happens during that rest and that is why i am sceptical about thinking we could do any better than the maltser.

simply i trust the maltser have done ther job proberly and there is no reason to worry about any other enzymme besides the diastatic group when using the top class malts we have at hand.
Iam more than willing to accept iam wrong and that infact we can further modify the malt but at the moment iam very sceptical.
I do know i have never used a malt that is commercial availble that has been troublesome in the brewery.
So even though i made the coment in jest that its iamwastingmytimease that chiller is using i feel genuinely there is no use of a step below the saccride rest unless its simply a dough in as all the other enzymmes responsible for protein break down have been already been done buy the maltser.

Over the hills and far away
Jayse
 

SJW

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For what its worth I'm with Jayse. In this country where we get the pick of the crop when it come to all types of grain I like to think that the maltster has done his job and the grain it of a quality that a protien rest, at least is not required.
Me & a mate have done 2 brews side by side (Belgian ales), he did a very complex stepped mash (It looked very complex) and i did a single infusion, and there is very little diff between the two. So I understand what Chiller is saying I just think its not required if time is a factor.

STEPHEN
 

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