Author Topic: Mashing in dark grains??  (Read 668 times)

Offline IMperry9

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Mashing in dark grains??
« on: June 12, 2015, 04:19:09 PM »
So potentially a stupid question here. I recently just made a trip to my LHBS and was picking up some grains for the next couple of batches. After chatting with the owner for a bit he stressed to me how the darker malts I purchased(Roasted barley and Pale chocolate malt) don't need to be mashed for the full 60 min. I have ever only made darker beers, stouts, brown ales, etc. through kits and all the grains were crushed and mashed together including the darker malts and the beers turned out fine. I have not made my own dark beer recipe yet so I don't really have experience other than from the kits. What are your recommendations for using these grains? He suggested adding the roasted barley a minute before I mash out or sparge and to add the chocolate malt 15 min before mash-out/sparge? Again any help would be appreciated.
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Mashing in dark grains??
« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2015, 04:23:09 PM »
You got good advice.
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Offline 69franx

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Re: Mashing in dark grains??
« Reply #2 on: June 12, 2015, 04:23:45 PM »
Thats one way to limit harsh astringency that can be added by the darker malts, but is not always necessary as you have seen in previous batches. If you are treating your water with water software, when you hit the correct mash pH, you will also avoid those harsh flavors. There will be a lot of responses here and most will tell you to experiment. I made great dark beers for a year before I started treating my water, and never separated the dark grains. Its really a combination of things that lead to the astringency, kind of a perfect storm of things going wrong. Separating the dark grains will eliminate one aspect of that perfect storm, making it less likely
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Offline erockrph

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Re: Mashing in dark grains??
« Reply #3 on: June 12, 2015, 06:17:51 PM »
Thats one way to limit harsh astringency that can be added by the darker malts, but is not always necessary as you have seen in previous batches. If you are treating your water with water software, when you hit the correct mash pH, you will also avoid those harsh flavors. There will be a lot of responses here and most will tell you to experiment. I made great dark beers for a year before I started treating my water, and never separated the dark grains. Its really a combination of things that lead to the astringency, kind of a perfect storm of things going wrong. Separating the dark grains will eliminate one aspect of that perfect storm, making it less likely
+1 - Personally, I include them in my mash from the start and target a mash pH of 5.5-5.6 for roasty beers, and 5.4 for brown ales. I have tried adding them at the end of the mash as well as cold-steeping them. In the end, I didn't see an advantage that warranted the extra step.

Whatever you decide on with your procedure, stick with it and make your recipe adjustments from there.
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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Mashing in dark grains??
« Reply #4 on: June 12, 2015, 06:56:20 PM »
Thats one way to limit harsh astringency that can be added by the darker malts, but is not always necessary as you have seen in previous batches. If you are treating your water with water software, when you hit the correct mash pH, you will also avoid those harsh flavors. There will be a lot of responses here and most will tell you to experiment. I made great dark beers for a year before I started treating my water, and never separated the dark grains. Its really a combination of things that lead to the astringency, kind of a perfect storm of things going wrong. Separating the dark grains will eliminate one aspect of that perfect storm, making it less likely
+1 - Personally, I include them in my mash from the start and target a mash pH of 5.5-5.6 for roasty beers, and 5.4 for brown ales. I have tried adding them at the end of the mash as well as cold-steeping them. In the end, I didn't see an advantage that warranted the extra step.

Whatever you decide on with your procedure, stick with it and make your recipe adjustments from there.

Yep, that's my process, too.
Jon H.

Offline kramerog

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Re: Mashing in dark grains??
« Reply #5 on: June 12, 2015, 07:58:30 PM »
When you do not mash your dark roasted grains, you generally need to increase the amount of these grains considerably to get the same flavor and color.

Offline IMperry9

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Re: Mashing in dark grains??
« Reply #6 on: June 13, 2015, 02:52:20 AM »
Thanks for the advice everyone! I think for now I will just mash the dark grains how I have before. I feel it would be easier instead of adjusting and needing more grain. Again thanks for clarifying the reason for the advice I received.
A fine beer may be judged with only one sip, but it's better to be thoroughly sure.
Kegged/Bottled: N/A
Coming up:
SMaSH Rye Pale Ale
Chocolate Rye Stout
Milk Stout