Author Topic: Quick question about attenuation  (Read 1292 times)

Offline tcanova

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Quick question about attenuation
« on: February 26, 2014, 08:53:14 AM »
I am wanting to make a session beer, nothing fancy, just some base grains, 2 row, munich maybe a little crystal and some carapils, and I am thinking of mashing in the 154-156 range.  What is the best way to figure how this will effect the attenuation?  I am just planning on using Safale-05 yeast.  Thank you.
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Offline goschman

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Re: Quick question about attenuation
« Reply #1 on: February 26, 2014, 09:11:29 AM »
I am wanting to make a session beer, nothing fancy, just some base grains, 2 row, munich maybe a little crystal and some carapils, and I am thinking of mashing in the 154-156 range.  What is the best way to figure how this will effect the attenuation?  I am just planning on using Safale-05 yeast.  Thank you.

I recently did a session beer. My attenuation was drastically lower than usual due to mashing at 158 and conducting a mash out which I never do. From what I understand, the mash out halts enzyme activity which affects attenuation. I got 67% attenuation with S04 compared to normal values between 75-80%.
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Offline denny

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Re: Quick question about attenuation
« Reply #2 on: February 26, 2014, 09:25:32 AM »
I am wanting to make a session beer, nothing fancy, just some base grains, 2 row, munich maybe a little crystal and some carapils, and I am thinking of mashing in the 154-156 range.  What is the best way to figure how this will effect the attenuation?  I am just planning on using Safale-05 yeast.  Thank you.

Take look through the NHC archives for a 2012 presentation by Greg Doss of Wyeast.  It was about the effects of mash temp using various strains of yeast.  But keep in mind that your recipe will likely have a lot more effect than mash temp will.
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Offline garc_mall

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Re: Quick question about attenuation
« Reply #3 on: February 26, 2014, 09:28:42 AM »
In my opinion, even with all of the information out there, you are looking at somewhere like a 10% range. It's a bit of a crapshoot.

If you really want a session beer (3-4%), I recommend mashing quite a bit higher (158-162) so you can get the body that you expect in a beer. I find session beers that are mashed lower to end up very thin.
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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Quick question about attenuation
« Reply #4 on: February 26, 2014, 09:46:05 AM »


If you really want a session beer (3-4%), I recommend mashing quite a bit higher (158-162) so you can get the body that you expect in a beer. I find session beers that are mashed lower to end up very thin.

+1.  Much below that range and it gets overly thin IMO.
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Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Quick question about attenuation
« Reply #5 on: February 26, 2014, 09:52:53 AM »
Yeah, I haven't noticed a huge difference in attenuation based on mash temp except that ~148-150 produces a pretty fermentable wort, ~150-156 produces a slightly less fermentable wort (< 5%?), and ~157-162 produces a good amount of remaining body for session. given this I just go with 148 for beers I want to dry out, 162 for beers i DON'T want to dry out and 155-157 for beers that I want somewhere inbetween. not very scientific
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Offline denny

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Re: Quick question about attenuation
« Reply #6 on: February 26, 2014, 10:29:53 AM »
FWIW, Greg Doss found the greatest fermentability at 154F IIRC.
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Offline ccfoo242

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Re: Quick question about attenuation
« Reply #7 on: February 26, 2014, 10:34:27 AM »
Definitely go for the 160f range. But one thing I found is if you use beer smith it gets funky when you go above 158 if I recall correctly. Brad said this has to do with published formulas. So I set mine to 158 to get an idea where it should finish but use 160 to get the proper water temp to add.


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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Quick question about attenuation
« Reply #8 on: February 26, 2014, 10:39:11 AM »
FWIW, Greg Doss found the greatest fermentability at 154F IIRC.
It was 153F for Pils malt. There was a local maximum. Fairly flat at lower temps until 148 or 149, then it increases with the peak at 153, then decreases with a steady slope as the temp increases.

The yeast used will have a big influence, one should consider that also. Greg had data for yeast strains also.
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Offline garc_mall

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Re: Quick question about attenuation
« Reply #9 on: February 26, 2014, 11:00:06 AM »

The yeast used will have a big influence, one should consider that also. Greg had data for yeast strains also.

WY1968 is my favorite for Session beers. It tends to be a little less attenuative, and it drops out and clears quickly. I like to drink my session beers as fresh as possible.
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Offline erockrph

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Re: Quick question about attenuation
« Reply #10 on: February 26, 2014, 11:56:19 AM »
FWIW, Greg Doss found the greatest fermentability at 154F IIRC.
It was 153F for Pils malt. There was a local maximum. Fairly flat at lower temps until 148 or 149, then it increases with the peak at 153, then decreases with a steady slope as the temp increases.

The yeast used will have a big influence, one should consider that also. Greg had data for yeast strains also.

I also believe he conducted his mash for 45 minutes regardless of temperature. I always suspected that you may see the fermentability of the lower-temp mashes in this study increase if they were given more time.

Still, Greg's talk did make a difference in my practice. I don't bother mashing below 153F any more, I mash at 156F for a little more body and 162 for session beers.
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Quick question about attenuation
« Reply #11 on: February 26, 2014, 12:01:38 PM »
FWIW, Greg Doss found the greatest fermentability at 154F IIRC.
It was 153F for Pils malt. There was a local maximum. Fairly flat at lower temps until 148 or 149, then it increases with the peak at 153, then decreases with a steady slope as the temp increases.

The yeast used will have a big influence, one should consider that also. Greg had data for yeast strains also.

I also believe he conducted his mash for 45 minutes regardless of temperature. I always suspected that you may see the fermentability of the lower-temp mashes in this study increase if they were given more time.

Still, Greg's talk did make a difference in my practice. I don't bother mashing below 153F any more, I mash at 156F for a little more body and 162 for session beers.

Kai had similar results. I don't remember how long he mashed, but it is on his page.
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Offline beersk

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Re: Quick question about attenuation
« Reply #12 on: February 26, 2014, 01:51:22 PM »
So, if mash temperature below 153F and if pure o2 and plentiful yeast is pitched, what would cause under or over attenuation? Recipe? What if the recipe is a pilsner? Or a simple IPA? Could too much pure o2 cause problems?
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Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Quick question about attenuation
« Reply #13 on: February 26, 2014, 01:56:01 PM »
So, if mash temperature below 153F and if pure o2 and plentiful yeast is pitched, what would cause under or over attenuation? Recipe? What if the recipe is a pilsner? Or a simple IPA? Could too much pure o2 cause problems?

kind of a broad question. with a low mash temp I would expect pretty high attentuation (assuming a simple base malt recipe with not too much unfermentables added). As I understand it, too much o2 shouldn't cause an increase in attenuation.

under attenuation in that case would tell me that the yeast pooped out, either too high a pitch temp so they went nuts and dropped out early, too low a ferm temp so they were stunned and... dropped out early. too little/too much yeast so they got pooped out/over excited and ... dropped out early.
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Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: Quick question about attenuation
« Reply #14 on: February 26, 2014, 03:05:19 PM »
So, if mash temperature below 153F and if pure o2 and plentiful yeast is pitched, what would cause under or over attenuation? Recipe? What if the recipe is a pilsner? Or a simple IPA? Could too much pure o2 cause problems?

Isn't attenuation really controlled by the recipe and the mash temp?  The yeast will do what they will do and assuming you use the same strain repeatedly they should be consistent.  Unless you shock the yeast somehow.

My experience with what I would say are under-attenuated batches is more a factor of an excessively high OG with solid attenuation and good final gravity.  Along the lines of >1.09 down to <1.015. However, the beers are sweeter than they "should" be to match the commercial examples.  To control that, I'm adjusting recipes to bring the OG down a bit so that the beer finishes dryer with the same expected attenuation.

I don't know about over oxygenating.  My understanding, which could be wrong, is that it's pretty hard to over oxygenate.
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