Author Topic: Sparge Temperature - Pt. 1: Standard vs. Cool | exBEERiment Results!  (Read 1669 times)

Offline brulosopher

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It's commonly accepted to sparge with warm water, though there's been some chatter lately about going the simpler route of using cooler water. While others have reported success with the cool sparge method, we wondered if it resulted in a perceptibly different beer when compared to using standard temp sparge water. Results are in!

http://brulosophy.com/2016/04/11/sparge-temperature-pt-1-standard-vs-cool-exbeeriment-results/

Offline charles1968

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Re: Sparge Temperature - Pt. 1: Standard vs. Cool | exBEERiment Results!
« Reply #1 on: April 11, 2016, 12:39:20 PM »
Great, my brew day just got simpler. No more treating & carefully heating sparge water in addition to mash water - next time I will just water from the tap (or faucet if you're American).

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Re: Sparge Temperature - Pt. 1: Standard vs. Cool | exBEERiment Results!
« Reply #2 on: April 11, 2016, 12:54:54 PM »
As dissolving sugars is trivial, the real question is 'How long does it take to heat the entire mass of wort to 170F+?'  The enzymes are still working away changing your wort profile until such a point.  Adding cool wort to an already relatively cool wort simply prolongs the process.  The time taken to heat the mass to 170F should be subtracted from the mash time if doing a single infusion mash batch sparge.

Offline FaradayUncaged

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Re: Sparge Temperature - Pt. 1: Standard vs. Cool | exBEERiment Results!
« Reply #3 on: April 11, 2016, 01:01:30 PM »
Great read, as usual.

And here I've worried about being a few degrees off in the past.  I'm sure I'll still continue to be that way from a process standpoint, but it's reassuring that the end results aren't completely destroyed.

Offline Wort-H.O.G.

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Re: Sparge Temperature - Pt. 1: Standard vs. Cool | exBEERiment Results!
« Reply #4 on: April 11, 2016, 01:18:49 PM »
As dissolving sugars is trivial, the real question is 'How long does it take to heat the entire mass of wort to 170F+?'  The enzymes are still working away changing your wort profile until such a point.  Adding cool wort to an already relatively cool wort simply prolongs the process.  The time taken to heat the mass to 170F should be subtracted from the mash time if doing a single infusion mash batch sparge.

^^^This. I like to sparge with 185Fish water to get my wort >170F as quickly as possible.
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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Sparge Temperature - Pt. 1: Standard vs. Cool | exBEERiment Results!
« Reply #5 on: April 11, 2016, 01:24:47 PM »
As dissolving sugars is trivial, the real question is 'How long does it take to heat the entire mass of wort to 170F+?'  The enzymes are still working away changing your wort profile until such a point.  Adding cool wort to an already relatively cool wort simply prolongs the process.  The time taken to heat the mass to 170F should be subtracted from the mash time if doing a single infusion mash batch sparge.

^^^This. I like to sparge with 185Fish water to get my wort >170F as quickly as possible.


Exactly. Same here. It may not be a true mashout since I don't hold the temp for a period, but it's some semblance of being able to lock in the mash profile.
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Offline theDarkSide

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Re: Sparge Temperature - Pt. 1: Standard vs. Cool | exBEERiment Results!
« Reply #6 on: April 11, 2016, 01:34:55 PM »
Perfect timing on this experiment.  I have a Grainfather and will be brewing during Big Brew Day in May away from home.  My biggest concern (besides having access to electricity) was how to heat the sparge water.  It kind of defeats the purpose of having an electric brew system if you need to haul a burner to heat sparge water.

The nice thing about the grainfather is I can raise the temp quickly to do a mash out, and the sparge on my recipes is almost always 3 gallons.  I also start turn on the boil switch when sparging so the wort is heating up as I'm sparging, so when I'm done, I'm close to boil.

I think I'm going to try this out at BBD to see how it works out for my system.
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Offline majorvices

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Re: Sparge Temperature - Pt. 1: Standard vs. Cool | exBEERiment Results!
« Reply #7 on: April 11, 2016, 01:54:45 PM »
I remember Kai posting these results years ago. Couple of things: Depending on your MT you could have a stuck run off if the temp drops too low. Now, granted, this is on a 20 bbl mash, but if my sparge gets down to the mid to high 130s I end up having laiutering nightmares.

Also, you still need tpo bring the wort temp back up so I'm not sure you are saving that much energy or time by cool sparging.

Still, neat experiment.

RPIScotty

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Re: Sparge Temperature - Pt. 1: Standard vs. Cool | exBEERiment Results!
« Reply #8 on: April 11, 2016, 01:56:46 PM »
Also, you still need to bring the wort temp back up so I'm not sure you are saving that much energy or time by cool sparging.

Good point. In the absence of any other advantages you are adding time to reach boil.

Offline brulosopher

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Re: Sparge Temperature - Pt. 1: Standard vs. Cool | exBEERiment Results!
« Reply #9 on: April 11, 2016, 03:30:54 PM »
Also, you still need to bring the wort temp back up so I'm not sure you are saving that much energy or time by cool sparging.

Good point. In the absence of any other advantages you are adding time to reach boil.

The main reason I won't be changing my process-- it doesn't add anything beneficial to my brew day, despite being of no detriment.

Offline Stevie

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Sparge Temperature - Pt. 1: Standard vs. Cool | exBEERiment Results!
« Reply #10 on: April 11, 2016, 03:47:57 PM »
for my process, this would actually add additional time. I use a single kettle and the 20 minutes or so spent hearing my sparge water would be moved to post mash

There are those times where I forget to heat the sparge, so it's nice to have some assurance that it doesn't hurt.
« Last Edit: April 11, 2016, 04:16:54 PM by Stevie »

Offline denny

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Re: Sparge Temperature - Pt. 1: Standard vs. Cool | exBEERiment Results!
« Reply #11 on: April 11, 2016, 04:14:01 PM »
OK, here goes Mr. Curmudgeon....I kinda feel like this is a non issue.  It was so well proved long ago that I see no surprises here.
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Offline tommymorris

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Re: Sparge Temperature - Pt. 1: Standard vs. Cool | exBEERiment Results!
« Reply #12 on: April 11, 2016, 04:17:15 PM »
I wish the write up included the volumes measured for pre and post boil. The author mentions an extra quart of wort preboil for the cold sparge batch. If we knew the post boil volumes we could calculate efficiency which may indeed be the same for both batches.

Anyway, minor gripe. The experiment does seem to show cold water sparge has no significant effect.

Offline charles1968

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Re: Sparge Temperature - Pt. 1: Standard vs. Cool | exBEERiment Results!
« Reply #13 on: April 11, 2016, 04:43:04 PM »
Also, you still need to bring the wort temp back up so I'm not sure you are saving that much energy or time by cool sparging.

Good point. In the absence of any other advantages you are adding time to reach boil.

The main advantage is 3-vessel brewing becomes 2-vessel brewing. Only one vessel needed to heat the mash water & collect the wort if you sparge from the tap with a jug.

There isn't really any need to treat the sparge water either as high pH is unlikely to matter with cold water.

it does take a bit longer to boil though, but to people with only one vessel for water/wort it's a great finding.