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Author Topic: I keep scorching my wort  (Read 4727 times)

Offline Bobbyjenkins

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I keep scorching my wort
« on: December 10, 2019, 01:47:32 pm »
I've made about 8 batches now and 3 of them have had a burnt flavor. In one of them which was supposed to be a summer ale it almost tasted a little like creme brulee at the end. I use an electric stovetop and a pretty thin 5 gallon stainless steel pot to brew so you could say my set up is not ideal.

I brewed a hefeweizen last night and I'm afraid that I scorched it again. The wort looked a lot darker then what I was expecting. I even dissolved the extract in another pot of water before adding to my kettle but I still think I scorched it. Any advice on how to avoid this or do I need to get a better set up?

Thanks

Offline BrewBama

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I keep scorching my wort
« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2019, 02:00:46 pm »
Yrs ago I used to brew extract on my stove in an enamel covered steel kettle. I don’t recall scorching any beer. Millions of gallons of homebrew have been brewed on a stovetop by a bazillion homebrewers. So I cannot believe stovetop is your issue.

Do you heat water, turn off the stove, stir in the extract, then when well mixed, turn on the stove to boil?

“When the water in the brewpot is boiling, turn off the stove and stir in the malt extract. Be sure the extract is completely dissolved (if your malt extract is the dry variety, make sure there are no clumps; if the extract is syrup, make sure that none is stuck to the bottom of the pot). Next, turn the heat back on and resume the boil. Stir the wort regularly during the boil to be sure that it doesn't scorch.” John Palmer, How to Brew

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« Last Edit: December 10, 2019, 02:06:54 pm by BrewBama »

Offline Megary

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Re: I keep scorching my wort
« Reply #2 on: December 10, 2019, 02:13:00 pm »
Turning off the heat and stirring until all extract is dissolved...then stirring some more for good measure is key.  Make sure you have a spoon or spatula that cleans the bottom of the pot as you stir!
Also, make sure any LME is warmed up in a pot of water first before adding to the pot.

Good luck!

Offline HopDen

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Re: I keep scorching my wort
« Reply #3 on: December 10, 2019, 02:55:47 pm »
Turning off the heat and stirring until all extract is dissolved...then stirring some more for good measure is key.  Make sure you have a spoon or spatula that cleans the bottom of the pot as you stir!
Also, make sure any LME is warmed up in a pot of water first before adding to the pot.

Good luck!

What about using an induction method? I believe its next to impossible to scorch anything. I don't know that for fact but you might want to research it.









Offline Bobbyjenkins

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Re: I keep scorching my wort
« Reply #4 on: December 10, 2019, 03:14:09 pm »
Thanks for the quick responses. I did a double addition. I added half the DME at about 170 then I brought to a boil and then I added the rest at about half way through the boil. I didn't take it off the heat for the first or second addition. Is that where I went wrong?
I'm very new to this so any advice helps  :)

Offline Slowbrew

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Re: I keep scorching my wort
« Reply #5 on: December 10, 2019, 04:26:15 pm »
Thanks for the quick responses. I did a double addition. I added half the DME at about 170 then I brought to a boil and then I added the rest at about half way through the boil. I didn't take it off the heat for the first or second addition. Is that where I went wrong?
I'm very new to this so any advice helps  :)

The extract, especially LME, is very heavy compared to water.  It sinks right to the bottom and like any good sugar starts burning.  Turn off the burner and move your kettle to the other side of the stovetop while you mix in the extract.  That always worked for me.

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Offline BrewBama

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Re: I keep scorching my wort
« Reply #6 on: December 10, 2019, 05:16:28 pm »
Thanks for the quick responses. I did a double addition. I added half the DME at about 170 then I brought to a boil and then I added the rest at about half way through the boil. I didn't take it off the heat for the first or second addition. Is that where I went wrong?
I'm very new to this so any advice helps  :)

The extract, especially LME, is very heavy compared to water.  It sinks right to the bottom and like any good sugar starts burning.  Turn off the burner and move your kettle to the other side of the stovetop while you mix in the extract.  That always worked for me.

Paul

Try it by turning off the heat and moving the pot off the the side, then stir in your extract and see if that’ll do it.

...and let us know how it goes.

Cheers!


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Offline EThome

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Re: I keep scorching my wort
« Reply #7 on: December 20, 2019, 10:43:17 am »
Turning off the heat and stirring until all extract is dissolved...then stirring some more for good measure is key.  Make sure you have a spoon or spatula that cleans the bottom of the pot as you stir!
Also, make sure any LME is warmed up in a pot of water first before adding to the pot.

Good luck!

What about using an induction method? I believe its next to impossible to scorch anything. I don't know that for fact but you might want to research it.

Be careful even with induction. I have scorched grain bags when steeping grains on induction. Did that twice before my brain kicked in and I placed a wire wrack in the bottom of the pot to keep the bag off the bottom.  ::)
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Offline coonmanxdog

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Re: I keep scorching my wort
« Reply #8 on: April 03, 2020, 01:14:50 pm »
Thanks for the quick responses. I did a double addition. I added half the DME at about 170 then I brought to a boil and then I added the rest at about half way through the boil. I didn't take it off the heat for the first or second addition. Is that where I went wrong?
I'm very new to this so any advice helps  :)

The extract, especially LME, is very heavy compared to water.  It sinks right to the bottom and like any good sugar starts burning.  Turn off the burner and move your kettle to the other side of the stovetop while you mix in the extract.  That always worked for me.

Paul

Try it by turning off the heat and moving the pot off the the side, then stir in your extract and see if that%u2019ll do it.

...and let us know how it goes.

Cheers!

This. Bring it up to say 170, take the pot off of the stove and turn off the burner. Stir in the extract. If it is liquid extract it should have already been soaking in hot water in the sink to make it more fluid. Use a spatula to clean the can or container out and then put it back on the stove while stirring and turn the heat back on. The problem with an electric stove is that even though you may have turned the burner off, it will still stay hot for quite some time. That could be the reason for the "scorch"....
« Last Edit: April 03, 2020, 01:20:21 pm by coonmanxdog »

Offline Kevin

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Re: I keep scorching my wort
« Reply #9 on: April 04, 2020, 07:35:26 am »
Also try adding most of your extract near the end of the boil. Extract beers are notorious for adding an unwanted flavor that is recognizable in all beers made using it. Adding the extract in the last 10 to 15 minutes of the boil helps eliminate that twangy characteristic.
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Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: I keep scorching my wort
« Reply #11 on: April 22, 2020, 11:47:16 am »
Also try adding most of your extract near the end of the boil. Extract beers are notorious for adding an unwanted flavor that is recognizable in all beers made using it. Adding the extract in the last 10 to 15 minutes of the boil helps eliminate that twangy characteristic.

I'd dispute the myth about extract "twang" but adding extract late is 100% a good recommendation if (IMO) for different reasons.

Extract will darken as it boils, so adding the majority at the end will help to keep your beers lighter in color.  You may not match the color profile you're looking for with 100% extract but you can get closer by adding it late in the boil.

The other recommendations about moving your pot of the burner and/or adding a diffuser are solid advice.

 
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Re: I keep scorching my wort
« Reply #12 on: April 22, 2020, 11:51:21 am »
Also try adding most of your extract near the end of the boil. Extract beers are notorious for adding an unwanted flavor that is recognizable in all beers made using it. Adding the extract in the last 10 to 15 minutes of the boil helps eliminate that twangy characteristic.

I don't think that's the case.  That flavor seems to come from oxidized liquid extract.  You don't get it with dry.  And time of addition doesn't make any difference in that regard.  It is a good technique for other reasons, though.
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Offline Steve Ruch

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Re: I keep scorching my wort
« Reply #13 on: April 22, 2020, 03:02:02 pm »
Also try adding most of your extract near the end of the boil. Extract beers are notorious for adding an unwanted flavor that is recognizable in all beers made using it. Adding the extract in the last 10 to 15 minutes of the boil helps eliminate that twangy characteristic.

I don't think that's the case.  That flavor seems to come from oxidized liquid extract.  You don't get it with dry.  And time of addition doesn't make any difference in that regard.  It is a good technique for other reasons, though.
It's not the case. Fresh extract is the key. I've been doing mostly extract brewing for a while now and have never tasted the "extract tang".
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Offline santoch

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Re: I keep scorching my wort
« Reply #14 on: May 01, 2020, 07:34:11 pm »
One other question, how big are the batches you are making?  Are they full volume boils or concentrated and topped up in the fermenter?
Depending on the concentration, concentrated boils can be similar to letting the extract pool in the bottom without mixing well.
Like the others said, mix it well, while off the heat.
I would add that you don't need to boil with the vigor of Mt. Vesuvius.
You only need just enough heat to make a lightly rolling boil.
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