Author Topic: Technique Help - Dark Grains at Vorlauf  (Read 1240 times)

Offline WattsOnTap

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 96
  • Maryland (The People's Republic of)
    • View Profile
Technique Help - Dark Grains at Vorlauf
« on: January 27, 2017, 06:53:46 PM »
It's been a while since I've done an all-grain dark beer (I know, shame on me).  I like the benefits I've read and heard about when adding dark grains at vorlauf instead of including them for the full mash.  Things brings up a couple of questions on how to approach this for the way I brew:

1) I use a pump and sparge arm to continuously recirculate during the mash, so I don't really do a traditional vorlauf step.  Should I add the grains XX minutes before mash out, during mash out, add after mash out and let rest before sparging, or some other technique?

2) Water adjustments - should I only factor the base grain(s) when using the Bru'n Water spreadsheet or still adjust using the total grain bill?  I would guess that I'm still using the total grain bill, since I'll be sparging all the grains and want the sparge water pH correct.  But, with the late addition, the initial pH will be different, maybe?

Any technique help (other than telling me to completely change my system) would be greatly appreciated!  :D

Offline gman23

  • Official Poobah of No Life.
  • *
  • Posts: 3513
    • View Profile
Re: Technique Help - Dark Grains at Vorlauf
« Reply #1 on: January 27, 2017, 07:09:31 PM »
Is there a particular style of beer this is related to?

The dehusked malts (carafa special, midnight wheat, etc) work great for me at small amount for the entire length of the mash.

Unless you are trying to do something very very dark with very very little roasted qualities, adding it late isn't necessary in my opinion but that is likely due to the types of beers I brew.

Sinimar is recommended by many.

Sorry, I will let someone advise on the actual procedure.

« Last Edit: January 27, 2017, 07:11:06 PM by goschman »
On Tap/Bottled: Kurbis Marzen, Red Rye, Vienna Lager, Dry Hopped Peach Cider       

Fermenting: Imperial Porter, Hopfenbier
Up Next: Maibock, Braunbier

Offline WattsOnTap

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 96
  • Maryland (The People's Republic of)
    • View Profile
Re: Technique Help - Dark Grains at Vorlauf
« Reply #2 on: January 27, 2017, 07:17:17 PM »
Is there a particular style of beer this is related to?

I was asking as a general technique question, but next up on my brew list is a Dark Mild. 

Offline kramerog

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1846
    • View Profile
    • My LinkedIn page
Re: Technique Help - Dark Grains at Vorlauf
« Reply #3 on: January 27, 2017, 08:07:51 PM »
Being consistent is probably more important than the actual timing.  If you don't mill the dark malts, I would add about ten minutes from when you drain the mash.  Having said that I've used the late-addition technique but I've been persuaded by this forum to not do so and instead control mash pH.

Offline mabrungard

  • Brewmaster General
  • *******
  • Posts: 2482
  • Water matters!
    • View Profile
    • Bru'n Water
Re: Technique Help - Dark Grains at Vorlauf
« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2017, 05:56:03 PM »
Having said that I've used the late-addition technique but I've been persuaded by this forum to not do so and instead control mash pH.

While I agree that getting the pH in the correct range for the beer being brewed, the technique of holding the roast until the end of the mash does have its place. It's a great technique for styles where you want more color and less of the roast's flavor. It's perfect for Schwartzbier and Dunkel. It might be OK in a Mild if your goal is to avoid an overly roasty beer.

In beers that you do want to be roasty, you will probably need to boost the roast percentage beyond a typically brewed recipe since the roast notes will be lessened.
Martin B
Carmel, IN

BJCP National
Foam Blowers of Indiana (FBI)

Brewing Water Information at:
https://sites.google.com/site/brunwater/

Like Bru'n Water on Facebook
https://www.facebook.com/Brun-Water-464551136933908/?ref=bookmarks

Offline santoch

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 887
  • North Bend, WA
    • View Profile
    • WAHA
Re: Technique Help - Dark Grains at Vorlauf
« Reply #5 on: January 31, 2017, 01:54:38 AM »
Having said that I've used the late-addition technique but I've been persuaded by this forum to not do so and instead control mash pH.

While I agree that getting the pH in the correct range for the beer being brewed, the technique of holding the roast until the end of the mash does have its place. It's a great technique for styles where you want more color and less of the roast's flavor. It's perfect for Schwartzbier and Dunkel. It might be OK in a Mild if your goal is to avoid an overly roasty beer.

In beers that you do want to be roasty, you will probably need to boost the roast percentage beyond a typically brewed recipe since the roast notes will be lessened.

+1
Mt. Si Brewing Society
Washington Homebrewer's Association (WAHA)
BJCP GM2/Mead Judge

Offline WattsOnTap

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 96
  • Maryland (The People's Republic of)
    • View Profile
Re: Technique Help - Dark Grains at Vorlauf
« Reply #6 on: January 31, 2017, 02:26:53 AM »

While I agree that getting the pH in the correct range for the beer being brewed, the technique of holding the roast until the end of the mash does have its place. It's a great technique for styles where you want more color and less of the roast's flavor.

Re-read the section covering this technique in Brewing Better Beer - for my recirculation system I added the dark grains with a few minutes left in my mash out, and then recirculated for another 10 minutes before sparging.  Would you recommend adjusting the mash water for the base grains only, or the total grain bill?  Or, run two profiles and adjust the mash water for the reduced grain bill and the sparge water for the total grain bill?

Or, just RDWHAHB?

Offline mabrungard

  • Brewmaster General
  • *******
  • Posts: 2482
  • Water matters!
    • View Profile
    • Bru'n Water
Re: Technique Help - Dark Grains at Vorlauf
« Reply #7 on: January 31, 2017, 03:01:01 PM »
Unless you are brewing a style that benefits from the wort pH being higher, it should be OK to let the pH drop when the roast is added at the end of the mash. So for dry stout, dunkel, and schwartzbier, it is OK to let the pH drop.
Martin B
Carmel, IN

BJCP National
Foam Blowers of Indiana (FBI)

Brewing Water Information at:
https://sites.google.com/site/brunwater/

Like Bru'n Water on Facebook
https://www.facebook.com/Brun-Water-464551136933908/?ref=bookmarks

Offline WattsOnTap

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 96
  • Maryland (The People's Republic of)
    • View Profile
Re: Technique Help - Dark Grains at Vorlauf
« Reply #8 on: February 01, 2017, 01:20:34 AM »
Thanks much!  I do believe I have a schwartzbier somewhere down my To-Brew list.

Offline pkrone

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 75
    • View Profile
Re: Technique Help - Dark Grains at Vorlauf
« Reply #9 on: February 01, 2017, 02:26:39 AM »
I added the carafa near the end of my mash when I did a schwarzbier.   I brew using a RIMS system.  Worked great: dark color and minimal roastiness. 
I like beer.  I like to make beer.   I don't like to argue about beer or making beer.