Author Topic: Decoction yields greater?  (Read 586 times)

Offline beerstache

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Decoction yields greater?
« on: December 16, 2013, 03:46:03 PM »
I just brewed an Oktoberfest last weekend and used a two step infusion with a single decoction at the end for the saccharification rest.  My target S.G was 1.058 and ended up with 1.066!  I've read on the forum that decoctions can increase your yields, is that what happend?  Is an 8 point increase about normal?
Will have to take this into account on my next decoction brew!

Offline dordway29

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Re: Decoction yields greater?
« Reply #1 on: December 16, 2013, 03:57:43 PM »
Decoctions have always increased my efficiency as well. My normal range is 70-76% depending on the gravity. The double decoction schedule I usually follow for most of my german beers will put me around 82-86% efficiency.

Offline kramerog

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Re: Decoction yields greater?
« Reply #2 on: December 16, 2013, 04:25:39 PM »
If your normal mash efficiency is low, you can get a large increase in mash and brewhouse efficiency from decoctions.
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Decoction yields greater?
« Reply #3 on: December 16, 2013, 04:37:24 PM »
I usually see a 2 to 4 gravity point bump.
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Offline kylekohlmorgen

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Re: Decoction yields greater?
« Reply #4 on: December 18, 2013, 07:35:32 AM »
Always assumed the increase was for 2 reasons:

1. You usually use a higher water/grist ratio
2. You increase mixing during the mash

I also assumed I was seeing the increase because I had poor efficiency in the first place (~63%). Potentially a  system with a higher average efficiency wouldn't see a difference...
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Decoction yields greater?
« Reply #5 on: December 18, 2013, 07:46:56 AM »
Always assumed the increase was for 2 reasons:

1. You usually use a higher water/grist ratio
2. You increase mixing during the mash

I also assumed I was seeing the increase because I had poor efficiency in the first place (~63%). Potentially a  system with a higher average efficiency wouldn't see a difference...
The boiling bursts small hard starch granules and makes that available to the enzymes, so higher conversion efficiency. Kai has information on his page, and a microscope picture of a granule.
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Online dmtaylor

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Re: Decoction yields greater?
« Reply #6 on: December 18, 2013, 08:30:07 AM »
My efficiency is always in the 90s when I decoct.  It really aids efficiency a lot.
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Offline kramerog

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Re: Decoction yields greater?
« Reply #7 on: December 18, 2013, 10:39:11 AM »
Always assumed the increase was for 2 reasons:

1. You usually use a higher water/grist ratio
2. You increase mixing during the mash

I also assumed I was seeing the increase because I had poor efficiency in the first place (~63%). Potentially a  system with a higher average efficiency wouldn't see a difference...
The boiling bursts small hard starch granules and makes that available to the enzymes, so higher conversion efficiency. Kai has information on his page, and a microscope picture of a granule.

Some starch does not gelatinize at typical mash temps, but I believe that this boost in efficiency is small for barley.  I believe the bigger effect comes from the additional mixing when the single infusion conversion efficiency is low, typically due to coarse grind. 
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Offline snowtiger87

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Re: Decoction yields greater?
« Reply #8 on: December 19, 2013, 03:21:50 PM »
I think another contributing factor to the efficiency increase is that the decoction allows the enzymes to pass through all temperature phases of activity.
« Last Edit: December 20, 2013, 11:56:42 AM by snowtiger87 »
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Offline Pi

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Re: Decoction yields greater?
« Reply #9 on: December 22, 2013, 08:46:17 AM »
So if decoction mashing gives us a greater yield, you can use less grain in your recipe. On a larger say hundred barrel plus scale, you would save $Ingrain but would that be offset by the cost of energy needed to do the decoction?
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Offline Jeff M

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Re: Decoction yields greater?
« Reply #10 on: December 22, 2013, 08:52:45 AM »
So if decoction mashing gives us a greater yield, you can use less grain in your recipe. On a larger say hundred barrel plus scale, you would save $Ingrain but would that be offset by the cost of energy needed to do the decoction?

You have to figure that a 100BBL System has been so fine tuned that it should already be having amazing efficiency(90%+).  That being said most large scale brewers will go threw extrordainary effort to gain a % because if you have a 5000lb Grain Bill 1% can save you a lot of cash over the course of a year. 
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Offline beerstache

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Re: Decoction yields greater?
« Reply #11 on: December 28, 2013, 03:28:16 PM »
Thanks for all the responses.  I just racked to secondary and the F.G. was 1.016, ABV about 6.5%.
Can I still consider this an Oktoberfest with the higher gravity or is it closer to a Maibock/Bock?
Just wondering what style to enter in a competition.

Online ajk

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Re: Decoction yields greater?
« Reply #12 on: December 28, 2013, 05:51:15 PM »
Not to give to pat an answer, but it all depends on the drinking experience.  If it drinks like an Oktoberfest, enter it as that, regardless of the specs.

Offline redzim

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Re: Decoction yields greater?
« Reply #13 on: January 03, 2014, 11:55:51 AM »
Decoctions have always increased my efficiency as well. My normal range is 70-76% depending on the gravity. The double decoction schedule I usually follow for most of my german beers will put me around 82-86% efficiency.

Me too. Even a single mash out decoction bumps my efficiency about 80%, compared to a single-infusion mash of the same amount of grain that would be in the low 70% area