Author Topic: Step Mash to Batch  (Read 1682 times)

Offline flbrewer

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Step Mash to Batch
« on: May 28, 2015, 09:47:58 PM »
I'm looking through Gordon Strong's new book, Modern Homebrew Recipes, and he has a mash technique listed for every recipe.

Most recipes in the book list a series of step mashes and temperatures. How can I deduce a good temperature to mash at in these cases to closely replicate the recipe utilizing batch sparging?

Secondly, some recipes call for no sparge. Would I ever NOT sparge during batch sparging?


Offline narcout

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Re: Step Mash to Batch
« Reply #1 on: May 28, 2015, 10:33:37 PM »
Most recipes in the book list a series of step mashes and temperatures. How can I deduce a good temperature to mash at in these cases to closely replicate the recipe utilizing batch sparging?

Step mashing and batch sparging are not mutually exclusive.  Are you asking how to replicate a step mash regimen with a single temperature infusion mash?

Secondly, some recipes call for no sparge. Would I ever NOT sparge during batch sparging?

If you are brewing a recipe without sparging, it's kind of irrelevant whether you typically batch sparge or fly sparge.   

 
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Offline flbrewer

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Re: Step Mash to Batch
« Reply #2 on: May 28, 2015, 10:45:16 PM »
Most recipes in the book list a series of step mashes and temperatures. How can I deduce a good temperature to mash at in these cases to closely replicate the recipe utilizing batch sparging?

Step mashing and batch sparging are not mutually exclusive.  Are you asking how to replicate a step mash regimen with a single temperature infusion mash?

Yes.

Secondly, some recipes call for no sparge. Would I ever NOT sparge during batch sparging?

If you are brewing a recipe without sparging, it's kind of irrelevant whether you typically batch sparge or fly sparge.   

 

Well theoretically, what would happen if I didn't sparge for a given recipe? I'm asking because I batch sparge every single recipe. Many in this new book I'm looking through list to not sparge. What are the effects of this aside from potentially a lower OG?

Offline BrewingReveries

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Re: Step Mash to Batch
« Reply #3 on: May 28, 2015, 11:23:44 PM »
Here's an article by John Palmer that explains the no sparge method: https://byo.com/grains/item/1375-skip-the-sparge

It should give you an idea of how to adjust the recipe if you wanted to batch sparge instead.

Offline flbrewer

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Re: Step Mash to Batch
« Reply #4 on: May 29, 2015, 12:55:20 AM »
Here's an article by John Palmer that explains the no sparge method: https://byo.com/grains/item/1375-skip-the-sparge

It should give you an idea of how to adjust the recipe if you wanted to batch sparge instead.

Thanks for the link, but that version of no sparge is different than what I'm seeing in this book. There is no increase in the grain bill here. For example, his New World IPA recipe calls for Step Infusion and no sparge.

Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Step Mash to Batch
« Reply #5 on: May 29, 2015, 12:57:42 AM »
I find the no sparge to give a better malt presence. I use it a lot for smaller beers where you want a lot of flavor without a lot of alcohol. It may be a reduction in tannin extraction that makes it seem maltier and richer or it may be my imagination but it does seem to work well. you target a much thinner final mash when no sparge is used. I will often to a mashout to get my final volume and hopefully knock out the last of the enzymes to maintain a less fermentable wort.

Here's an article by John Palmer that explains the no sparge method: https://byo.com/grains/item/1375-skip-the-sparge

It should give you an idea of how to adjust the recipe if you wanted to batch sparge instead.

Thanks for the link, but that version of no sparge is different than what I'm seeing in this book. There is no increase in the grain bill here. For example, his New World IPA recipe calls for Step Infusion and no sparge.

Step infusion and no sparge are not mutually exclusive. step infusion just has you increasing the temp of your mash by adding hot water. no sparge just means only draining the mash and not adding more water after.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2015, 01:04:25 AM by morticaixavier »
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Re: Step Mash to Batch
« Reply #6 on: May 29, 2015, 01:35:14 AM »
I find the no sparge to give a better malt presence. I use it a lot for smaller beers where you want a lot of flavor without a lot of alcohol. It may be a reduction in tannin extraction that makes it seem maltier and richer or it may be my imagination but it does seem to work well. you target a much thinner final mash when no sparge is used. I will often to a mashout to get my final volume and hopefully knock out the last of the enzymes to maintain a less fermentable wort.

Here's an article by John Palmer that explains the no sparge method: https://byo.com/grains/item/1375-skip-the-sparge

It should give you an idea of how to adjust the recipe if you wanted to batch sparge instead.

Thanks for the link, but that version of no sparge is different than what I'm seeing in this book. There is no increase in the grain bill here. For example, his New World IPA recipe calls for Step Infusion and no sparge.

Step infusion and no sparge are not mutually exclusive. step infusion just has you increasing the temp of your mash by adding hot water. no sparge just means only draining the mash and not adding more water after.

+1

That Palmer article is gold by the way.  I think I initially found it linked from Denny's site, and it has served me well as the basis for how I brew.

I do a step infusion, no sparge in a cooler for every batch I brew.  For a two step mash I'll mash in with half of the total water volume and then step it up with the other half.  If I'm adding an acid or protein rest I'll cut the initial strike water in half and go from there.  Expect lower efficiency (I get 70-75%) but it's just a matter of building that into your grain bill.

As for the increase in grain bill -- whenever I look at a recipe, whether it's Gordon's, some brewery's or one of yours, I'm only looking at the malt as a percent of the total grain bill, not the weights used.  I'm only brewing on my system after all.
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Offline flbrewer

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Re: Step Mash to Batch
« Reply #7 on: May 29, 2015, 01:37:43 AM »
Any take on this...how to replicate a step mash regimen with a single temperature infusion mash?

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Re: Step Mash to Batch
« Reply #8 on: May 29, 2015, 02:01:15 AM »
Any take on this...how to replicate a step mash regimen with a single temperature infusion mash?

This is not based on anything other than my experience, but it seems to me like you can land around the middle of the beta and alpha rest temps and call it close enough for a single infusion.  For example, if I'm planning a two step mash of 145/155, I'm comfortable plugging a single mash temp of 150 into beersmith.
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Offline troybinso

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Re: Step Mash to Batch
« Reply #9 on: May 29, 2015, 03:33:37 AM »
Any take on this...how to replicate a step mash regimen with a single temperature infusion mash?

I don't think this is possible.

What are you trying to accomplish by having a step mash? The recipe may call for it, but you might find that it is not necessary. If you want to try it, a simple multi-infusion mash is pretty easy to accomplish with a thicker initial mash and boiling water additions.

Offline BrewBama

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Re: Step Mash to Batch
« Reply #10 on: May 29, 2015, 04:35:49 AM »
I have been doing step infusions lately. I do it most of all to ensure I introduce the strike water to the grain bill below the gelatinization point of the grains. This ensures I do not get dough balls therefore increasing the successful conversion of starches to sugars. I've been infusing strike water to reach a short rest at 130*F, infusing for an hour rest at 152-154*F, and infusing again for a mash out at 170*F. I get my pre boil vol with these three steps so I don't have a need to sparge. I've been getting great results using this technique. And it makes for a very relaxed, stress free brew day for me.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2015, 04:38:06 AM by BrewBama »
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Re: Step Mash to Batch
« Reply #11 on: May 29, 2015, 04:38:02 AM »
Any take on this...how to replicate a step mash regimen with a single temperature infusion mash?

It is not possible to replicate a step mash with a single-infusion mash, but one can substitute a single-infusion mash for a step mash. 

With that said,  I have performed step mashes using an initial hot water infusion followed by boiling water infusions.  I can derive and perform the calculations necessary to step mash with hot and boiling water infusions by hand because I understand an underlying thermodynamics concept known as specific heat capacity.  For those with rusty math and/or physics skills, Brew Smith should be able to perform the calculations for you.

If one knows how much hot liquor one wants to use for the step infusion, then the calculation shown immediately below will compute the minimum hot liquor temperature for the infusion.

current_mash_specific_heat_in_gallons =  mash_liquor_volume_in_gallons + (grist_weight_in_lbs * 0.05)

Note: a pound of grain has the same specific heat capacity as 1/20th of a gallon of water

step_liquor_temperature = ((desired_step_rest_temperature *  (current_mash_specific_heat_in_gallons + step_liquor_volume_in_gallons)) - (current_mash_specific_heat_in_gallons * mash_temperature)) / step_liquor_volume_in_gallons

While the calculation shown above is useful, brewers usually perform step infusions using boiling water; therefore, what we really need to calculate is the minimum amount of 212F hot liquor that we need to raise the combined temperature to the desired step rest temperature. 

Rewriting the equation shown above to solve for step_liquor_volume_in_gallons when using 212F liquor yields:

current_mash_specific_heat_in_gallons =  mash_liquor_volume_in_gallons + (grist_weight_in_lbs * 0.05)

step_liquor_volume_in_gallons  = ((step_rest_temperature *  current_mash_specific_heat_in_gallons)  - (current_mash_temperature * current_mash_specific_heat_in_gallons)) / (212  - step_rest_temperature)
 
Example

We mashed-in with 10lbs of grain and a hot liquor to grist ratio of 1.25 quarts per pound, which resulted in a rest temperature of 151F.  We now want to raise the temperature to 168F using a boiling water infusion.

current_mash_specific_heat_in_gallons =  10 * 1.25 / 4 + (10 * 0.05) = 3.625

step_liquor_volume_in_gallons  = ((168 *  3.625)  - (151 * 3.625))  / (212 - 168)
= (609 - 547.375)   / 44
=  61.625 / 44
= 1.4 gallons of 212F liquor

Now, let's verify that that value works with the first equation.

step_liquor_temperature = ((168 *  (3.625 + 1.4)) - (3.625 * 151)) / 1.4
= ((168 *  5.025) - (3.625 * 151)) / 1.4
= (844.2 - 547.375) / 1.4
= 296.825 / 1.4
= 212F

With the above example complete, the computed hot liquor volume is the smallest volume of 212F hot liquor that one should use.  In practice, one should boil at least this amount of liquor because the tun also has to be brought up the the desired rest temperature, which will require a small amount of 212F hot liquor above and beyond the computed value.

One last thing, if one is going to perform more than one step, one must start with a thicker mash because each infusion increases the amount of hot liquor that is necessary to raise the mash to the next temperature.

Note 2: Extra parentheses were added to ensure that people understand the order of operations.

« Last Edit: June 03, 2015, 04:09:04 PM by S. cerevisiae »

Offline narcout

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Re: Step Mash to Batch
« Reply #12 on: May 29, 2015, 01:58:37 PM »
Any take on this...how to replicate a step mash regimen with a single temperature infusion mash?

If you take a specific step mash regimen and think about what each of the steps is trying to accomplish, you can use your knowledge of ingredients and mash chemistry to decide on a process that will work well in most circumstances.  However, there are some steps (such as a ferulic acid rest) that you probably can't really replicate (though proper yeast selection and fermentation management may help).

If you post a specific step mash, someone will be able to suggest an appropriate single infusion mash temp.

You can always use your boil kettle or HLT as a direct fire mash tun to perform a step mash and then transfer to your regular mash tun for lautering (or use boiling water, perform a decoction, or set up a RIMS or HERMS system).
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Re: Step Mash to Batch
« Reply #13 on: May 29, 2015, 03:25:42 PM »
Any take on this...how to replicate a step mash regimen with a single temperature infusion mash?

Easy...just look at the temp steps to deduce what the recipe author is going for.  Then pick a compromise single infusion temp to replicate it.  For example, if I saw a step mash regimen that was 145/158, I'd do a single infusion about 150-152.
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Re: Step Mash to Batch
« Reply #14 on: June 01, 2015, 03:59:24 AM »
It is pretty easy to run out of space in a cooler MT doing infusion step mashes if you aren't careful.  If that ever happens, and you still haven't hit your target temps, your best bet is to pull an emergency decoction.

Pull out about a third of the grist into another pot.  You want just enough wort so it isn't too 'dry'.  It should be relatively easy to stir, like breakfast oatmeal.

Bring it first to a 155F rest for 10 mins or so, then bring it all the way up to a boil for about 15 mins and return it to the main mash. Stir the whole time so you don't scorch.  Scorching is probably the biggest danger to a decoction mash, so keep it wet enough and stir constantly.

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