Author Topic: Mash ph too low  (Read 1562 times)

Offline Philbrew

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 867
    • View Profile
Mash ph too low
« on: August 24, 2016, 08:13:37 PM »
On Monday I brewed a schwarzbier and on Tuesday I brewed a Greman pils.  The mash ph of both came out well below Brunwater target.  Both samples were drawn at 15 min. and cooled to 70*.

-  Schwarzbier target was 5.2.  Measured was 4.97

-  Pils target was 5.2.  Measured was 5.01

The only change to my recipes was switching from Weyermann Pils to Best Malz Pils for the main grist.

1.  Could the malt change be the cause?  and

2.  What is that low mash ph going to do to the beer?
Many of us would be on a strict liquid diet if it weren't for pretzels.

Offline hopfenundmalz

  • Global Moderator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 8870
  • Milford, MI
    • View Profile
Re: Mash ph too low
« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2016, 08:41:17 PM »
Best was low for me also, by 0.25. There was a lot that a local pro confirmed was contaminated with acidulated malt, so it mashed low for him, and it turns out Best made it up to him (don't know all the details).

This may be one malt we need more data on. Enough people found that Rahr 2 row comes out low. If I have Rahr I enter it as 4 L in the malt entry.
Jeff Rankert
Ann Arbor Brewers Guild
AHA Governing Committee
BJCP National
Home-brewing, not just a hobby, it is a lifestyle!

Offline brewinhard

  • Official Poobah of No Life.
  • *
  • Posts: 3225
    • View Profile
Re: Mash ph too low
« Reply #2 on: August 24, 2016, 09:42:27 PM »
I recently kegged a blond ale that was all over the place with regards to mash pH (which I usually end up getting pretty close most of the time). Was shooting for a 5.3, and originally ended up with a 5.06. Then added some baking soda and it shot up to a 5.98. Added lactic acid and it dropped back down to a final 5.08 where I decided to just let it ride. Kegged the beer last week and surprisingly, I did not pick up any flavor concerns regarding the screwed up mash pH.
I did however notice a decrease in mash efficiency. Was shooting for a 1.050 and only got a 1.046. Tonight I am tapping it now that it is carbed up. I will try to report if I can pick up any concerns in flavor with regards to the crazy pH issues.

Offline Philbrew

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 867
    • View Profile
Re: Mash ph too low
« Reply #3 on: September 07, 2016, 02:52:22 AM »
Best was low for me also, by 0.25. There was a lot that a local pro confirmed was contaminated with acidulated malt, so it mashed low for him, and it turns out Best made it up to him (don't know all the details).

This may be one malt we need more data on. Enough people found that Rahr 2 row comes out low. If I have Rahr I enter it as 4 L in the malt entry.
I got back from Hop School and after Honey Do's I've have some time to play with this.  To get to measured PHs, I had to up the color in Brunwater of the Best Malz pils malt from 2 to 13 to match the 5.01 for the Pils and to 22 to match the 4.97 for the schwarzbier.  Is this possible?  Is it time to contact Best Malz and ask Wassup?

Also, what are these low mash PHs going to do to the beer?
Many of us would be on a strict liquid diet if it weren't for pretzels.

Offline hopfenundmalz

  • Global Moderator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 8870
  • Milford, MI
    • View Profile
Re: Mash ph too low
« Reply #4 on: September 07, 2016, 05:28:26 AM »
Best was low for me also, by 0.25. There was a lot that a local pro confirmed was contaminated with acidulated malt, so it mashed low for him, and it turns out Best made it up to him (don't know all the details).

This may be one malt we need more data on. Enough people found that Rahr 2 row comes out low. If I have Rahr I enter it as 4 L in the malt entry.
I got back from Hop School and after Honey Do's I've have some time to play with this.  To get to measured PHs, I had to up the color in Brunwater of the Best Malz pils malt from 2 to 13 to match the 5.01 for the Pils and to 22 to match the 4.97 for the schwarzbier.  Is this possible?  Is it time to contact Best Malz and ask Wassup?

Also, what are these low mash PHs going to do to the beer?
I'm not sure about your numbers, were those from brews? The quote above was for the Pils malt in distilled water. You can up the color in Brunwater and calculate the water additions to make the mash hit the target.

Try contacting Best, or better yet Country Malt. Best in Germany never got back to me.

Too Low pH gets you out of the optimum range for the enzymes. The finished beer could be too sharp or even tart for the style.
Jeff Rankert
Ann Arbor Brewers Guild
AHA Governing Committee
BJCP National
Home-brewing, not just a hobby, it is a lifestyle!

Offline brewinhard

  • Official Poobah of No Life.
  • *
  • Posts: 3225
    • View Profile
Re: Mash ph too low
« Reply #5 on: September 07, 2016, 10:07:52 PM »
Okay update on my Blond that I served at my buddies wedding on Labor day.
Out of 4 total kegs (3 local commercial ones and mine), my blond was the only one that kicked that night.

Everyone seemed to really enjoy it.

As far as any negative effects from the whacked out pH readings all through the mash (see earlier post), the average taster did not detect anything off.

After enjoying about 10 glasses of them in a row, I was starting to pick up an ever so slight acidity to the beer that is normally not there in my normal pH batches. Not sure if it was just in my head or the sheer fact that I was getting schwilled. But I did percieve a very minute tang on the very end of the finish after drinking it.
That said, it still came out great and I went home empty.

Offline HoosierBrew

  • Global Moderator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 13030
  • Indianapolis,IN
    • View Profile
Re: Mash ph too low
« Reply #6 on: September 07, 2016, 10:11:05 PM »
Sounds like it came out great. Who knows, maybe the tang really was there, or maybe just the thought that it might be. Regardless, if it kicked, I'm betting it was tasty.
Jon H.

Offline brewinhard

  • Official Poobah of No Life.
  • *
  • Posts: 3225
    • View Profile
Re: Mash ph too low
« Reply #7 on: September 08, 2016, 09:51:15 PM »
Sounds like it came out great. Who knows, maybe the tang really was there, or maybe just the thought that it might be. Regardless, if it kicked, I'm betting it was tasty.

Yeah, it could have been in my head and the fact that I was scarfing down a ton of pickled veggies for appetizers. I most definitely will be tinkering with this recipe to really hone in on it. Almost there...

On a side note, that blond is getting judged at a comp next week so we shall see what the judges pick up.