Author Topic: How is my mash schedule? Trying to get more foam  (Read 434 times)

Offline haeffnkr

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 50
How is my mash schedule? Trying to get more foam
« on: September 08, 2021, 01:46:29 AM »
Hi,
I am trying to get more foam out of my beers.

I know good foam is combination of a lot of things.
I do lodo and have good fermentation practices and clean glasses.

My mash schedule for a lot of my lagers is as follows.

144 - 20
148 - 30
153 - 15
160 - 40
170 - 5

I have an automated rims system so I just punch in the temps and times and let it run.

Thoughts? Suggestions?

thanks in advance.
haeffnkr

Offline BrewBama

  • Official Poobah of No Life. (I Got Ban Hammered by Drew)
  • *********
  • Posts: 4740
How is my mash schedule? Trying to get more foam
« Reply #1 on: September 08, 2021, 03:04:04 AM »
There are a million ways to brew beer. If you want to step mash I say go for it.

My opinion:

With a single temp mash the resulting beers are just as clear, the head is just as foamy, head retention is just as long, and the beer is indistinguishable to me.  I’ve never took a sip of beer and said, “I can tell this was step mashed”. 

If step mashes made 2x better beer despite being 2x more PITA I’d do it. But, after a cpl years step mashing, I determined step mashes are 2x more PITA without any improvement. That places it in the not worth it column for me.

I caveat the above with two thoughts:

1. I am normally using American well modified base malts. If I were using a less modified variety malt that would benefit from temp steps I imagine my process would adapt for that grain bill.

2. My HERMS PID controller is not programmable. To make temp change I had to change the temp myself. If I had a programmable PID controller I may be more inclined to consider using steps.  Sounds lazy but the constant interaction was a PITA for little, if any, benefit.

BTW: here’s a great interview with the “Pope of Foam” for some insight. He wrote a book on foam as well (~$40). https://youtu.be/_EN-RWOxORE

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
« Last Edit: September 08, 2021, 03:13:07 AM by BrewBama »
wisdom is proved right by her deeds

Brewed in the Tennessee Valley. Rocket City — Huntsville AL

Offline Richard

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 583
Re: How is my mash schedule? Trying to get more foam
« Reply #2 on: September 08, 2021, 04:52:35 AM »
I'm not sure the 144 step is doing anything good for your foam. I get good foam with this formula (BIAB):

Main mash step at 148-152 (depending on beer) for 20 mins or until gravity is 85-90% of my target. Usually takes 20-30 mins.
Raise to 162 over about 10 mins and hold there for 20 mins or until gravity is just a couple of points below my target.
Raise to 170 over 10 mins and remove the bag with grains.

My mash efficiency with this regimen is 80-85%. I started doing it this way because a full hour mash at my main temperature was giving me too much fermentability and over-attenuation. When I do it this way I hit the OG and FG numbers from BeerSmith very closely every time and I get good foam.
Original Gravity - that would be Newton's

Offline Lazy Ant Brewing

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 596
Re: How is my mash schedule? Trying to get more foam
« Reply #3 on: September 10, 2021, 01:18:46 PM »
I'm not sure the 144 step is doing anything good for your foam. I get good foam with this formula (BIAB):

Main mash step at 148-152 (depending on beer) for 20 mins or until gravity is 85-90% of my target. Usually takes 20-30 mins.
Raise to 162 over about 10 mins and hold there for 20 mins or until gravity is just a couple of points below my target.
Raise to 170 over 10 mins and remove the bag with grains.

My mash efficiency with this regimen is 80-85%. I started doing it this way because a full hour mash at my main temperature was giving me too much fermentability and over-attenuation. When I do it this way I hit the OG and FG numbers from BeerSmith very closely every time and I get good foam.

I'm curious how you are raising the temp of your mash since you're doing BIAB.  How do you heat your mash? If you are heating your water on a propane burner prior to to pouring the grain in, don't you risk burning a hole in your bag when you fire up the burner to raise your mash temp?

Thanks in advance for your answer.
It's easier to read brewing books and get information from the forum than to sacrifice virgins to appease the brewing gods when bad beer happens!

Offline Richard

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 583
Re: How is my mash schedule? Trying to get more foam
« Reply #4 on: September 10, 2021, 02:21:21 PM »
I'm not sure the 144 step is doing anything good for your foam. I get good foam with this formula (BIAB):

Main mash step at 148-152 (depending on beer) for 20 mins or until gravity is 85-90% of my target. Usually takes 20-30 mins.
Raise to 162 over about 10 mins and hold there for 20 mins or until gravity is just a couple of points below my target.
Raise to 170 over 10 mins and remove the bag with grains.

My mash efficiency with this regimen is 80-85%. I started doing it this way because a full hour mash at my main temperature was giving me too much fermentability and over-attenuation. When I do it this way I hit the OG and FG numbers from BeerSmith very closely every time and I get good foam.

I'm curious how you are raising the temp of your mash since you're doing BIAB.  How do you heat your mash? If you are heating your water on a propane burner prior to to pouring the grain in, don't you risk burning a hole in your bag when you fire up the burner to raise your mash temp?

Thanks in advance for your answer.

I have an electric kettle. It has a Blichmann Boil Coil near the bottom and the bag doesn't touch the element.
Original Gravity - that would be Newton's

Offline Lazy Ant Brewing

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 596
Re: How is my mash schedule? Trying to get more foam
« Reply #5 on: September 10, 2021, 03:08:27 PM »
Thanks.  I'm doing BIAB with a propane burner so I don't do any attempt at step mashing.  Yet I and others like my beer.
Glad you have the capability to modify your mash schedule.  Cheers
It's easier to read brewing books and get information from the forum than to sacrifice virgins to appease the brewing gods when bad beer happens!

Offline hopfenundmalz

  • Global Moderator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 10231
  • Milford, MI
Re: How is my mash schedule? Trying to get more foam
« Reply #6 on: September 10, 2021, 03:29:52 PM »
A rest at 162F and a healthy fermentation are very good for foam. Spunding is also a good practice.
Jeff Rankert
AHA Lifetime Member
BJCP National
Ann Arbor Brewers Guild
Home-brewing, not just a hobby, it is a lifestyle!

Online denny

  • Administrator
  • Retired with too much time on my hands
  • *****
  • Posts: 24455
  • Noti OR [1991.4, 287.6deg] AR
    • Dennybrew
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

www.dennybrew.com

The best, sharpest, funniest, weirdest and most knowledgable minds in home brewing contribute on the AHA forum. - Alewyfe

"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts." - Bertrand Russell

Offline fredthecat

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 805
Re: How is my mash schedule? Trying to get more foam
« Reply #8 on: September 10, 2021, 03:32:24 PM »
I'm not sure the 144 step is doing anything good for your foam. I get good foam with this formula (BIAB):

Main mash step at 148-152 (depending on beer) for 20 mins or until gravity is 85-90% of my target. Usually takes 20-30 mins.
Raise to 162 over about 10 mins and hold there for 20 mins or until gravity is just a couple of points below my target.
Raise to 170 over 10 mins and remove the bag with grains.

My mash efficiency with this regimen is 80-85%. I started doing it this way because a full hour mash at my main temperature was giving me too much fermentability and over-attenuation. When I do it this way I hit the OG and FG numbers from BeerSmith very closely every time and I get good foam.

this is about exactly what i do, except i do it in a cooler mash tun and usually do the main mash for anywhere from 40 mins to 90 mins, whatever is convenient or if i want to try to get a more attenuative wort.

i will say, my mash efficiency though is generally 65%. ive never been happy with it. but im glad that im at least consistent with it for recipe formulation.

i stopped trying to do fancy temp mashes because i was getting worse efficiency and worse head retention for more effort.



I'm curious how you are raising the temp of your mash since you're doing BIAB.  How do you heat your mash? If you are heating your water on a propane burner prior to to pouring the grain in, don't you risk burning a hole in your bag when you fire up the burner to raise your mash temp?

Thanks in advance for your answer.

i have a separate very large stainless pot i use to heat mashout/sparge water if necessary.

Offline BrewBama

  • Official Poobah of No Life. (I Got Ban Hammered by Drew)
  • *********
  • Posts: 4740
wisdom is proved right by her deeds

Brewed in the Tennessee Valley. Rocket City — Huntsville AL

Online denny

  • Administrator
  • Retired with too much time on my hands
  • *****
  • Posts: 24455
  • Noti OR [1991.4, 287.6deg] AR
    • Dennybrew
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

www.dennybrew.com

The best, sharpest, funniest, weirdest and most knowledgable minds in home brewing contribute on the AHA forum. - Alewyfe

"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts." - Bertrand Russell

Offline purduekenn

  • Assistant Brewer
  • ***
  • Posts: 140
Re: How is my mash schedule? Trying to get more foam
« Reply #11 on: September 11, 2021, 12:42:46 AM »
I get good foam mashing at 152 also.