Author Topic: Using cinnamon in the mash  (Read 1322 times)

Offline andude

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Using cinnamon in the mash
« on: September 16, 2011, 12:20:30 PM »
Does anyone use a teaspoon of cinnamon in their mash?  Does this work to add head retention?  Does this do anything else?  Or is this practice just an old-Papazian's tale?

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Offline a10t2

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Re: Using cinnamon in the mash
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2011, 12:32:46 PM »
Never heard that one. Even if it did help, which I kind of doubt, a teaspoon is a fair amount. I'd worry about flavor carryover.
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Offline theDarkSide

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Re: Using cinnamon in the mash
« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2011, 12:34:16 PM »
I think one of the BN shows said it was used as an antioxidant.
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Offline denny

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Re: Using cinnamon in the mash
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2011, 12:38:52 PM »
I think one of the BN shows said it was used as an antioxidant.

OTOH, since I've never used it and I've never had an oxidized mash, it doesn't seem like it has much value.
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Offline theDarkSide

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Re: Using cinnamon in the mash
« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2011, 12:49:38 PM »
I think one of the BN shows said it was used as an antioxidant.

OTOH, since I've never used it and I've never had an oxidized mash, it doesn't seem like it has much value.

Great!!  What the hell am I supposed to do now?  Charlie uses it, Denny doesn't!  Who do I follow?  ;D

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Offline majorvices

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Re: Using cinnamon in the mash
« Reply #5 on: September 16, 2011, 01:09:11 PM »
Bud experimented with cinnamon in the mash as an antioxident. Supposedly just a small amount of cin. has powerful antioxident qualities and those qualities survive through the boil but a small amount leaves no flavor. Supposedly it worked very well but Bid was afraid it would get out that they put "cinnamon in their beer" and they figured they didn't want that image so they never used it in production.

I have no idea if it works or not and I have never tried it.
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Offline tygo

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Re: Using cinnamon in the mash
« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2011, 02:27:05 PM »
I think one of the BN shows said it was used as an antioxidant.

The recent Brew Strong on Staling talked about how Charlie P used it in the mash as an antioxidant.  I was skeptical when I heard it and I still am.  Maybe it works, maybe it doesn't.  But like Denny said, if you don't have a problem why bother with it.
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Offline nateo

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Re: Using cinnamon in the mash
« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2011, 06:43:29 PM »
It sounds kind of like when New Belgium was using olive oil because it was supposed to aid yeast health, but then it turned out the first study wasn't really repeatable and the olive oil probably wasn't doing anything, IIRC.

If your mash is oxidizing, I'd probably just say to stop pouring it over a waterfall.
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Offline majorvices

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Re: Using cinnamon in the mash
« Reply #8 on: September 17, 2011, 09:29:39 AM »
Either you guys don't believe me or you didn;t read my post.  ;) I can't find the info now but IIRC Budweiser said the cinnamon added to mash worked to stabilize the beer in packaging and wasn't just hot side aeration but also countered the effects of o2 pick up after packaging. It's been several years since I first read it, but supposedly it works well only, as I said, Bud didn't want it to get out that they used cinnamon in their beer.
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Offline denny

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Re: Using cinnamon in the mash
« Reply #9 on: September 17, 2011, 10:38:20 AM »
Either you guys don't believe me or you didn;t read my post.  ;) I can't find the info now but IIRC Budweiser said the cinnamon added to mash worked to stabilize the beer in packaging and wasn't just hot side aeration but also countered the effects of o2 pick up after packaging. It's been several years since I first read it, but supposedly it works well only, as I said, Bud didn't want it to get out that they used cinnamon in their beer.

I think that the point is that although it might have worked for them, on the homebrew level it's kinda like a solution in search of a problem.
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Offline garyg

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Re: Using cinnamon in the mash
« Reply #10 on: September 19, 2011, 09:23:31 AM »
I've used a pinch of cinnamon in my mash on many occasions.  Reminds me I need to replenish my supply of cheap cinnamon for brewing (for cooking Saigon Cinnamon is the way to go!).  The flavor/aroma has never carried over into the finished product.  Not sure how much affect it actually has on reducing oxidation.  My recollection is that Charlie picked up this trick when he observed a Belgian brewer using cinnamon in the mash.  FWIW, I don't usually have issues with oxidation in my beers.  I don't worry too much about HSA when I'm brewing, either. 

As a judge, I find that oxidation is the single most common problem in beers entered in competition. Who knows, perhaps a pinch of cinnamon in the mash could give your beer an edge.
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Offline denny

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Re: Using cinnamon in the mash
« Reply #11 on: September 19, 2011, 09:42:22 AM »
As a judge, I find that oxidation is the single most common problem in beers entered in competition. Who knows, perhaps a pinch of cinnamon in the mash could give your beer an edge.

I agree that oxidation is probably the most common fault I find.  I guess if you're having issues with it then cinnamon would be something to try.  FWIW, I experimented with campden tabs in the mash for a year.  They're supposed to reduce or prevent oxidation, too.  I quit after a year because it didn't seem to make any difference.  I concluded from that I must not have an oxidation problem and I had a solution in search of a problem.
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Re: Using cinnamon in the mash
« Reply #12 on: September 19, 2011, 11:10:35 AM »
As a judge, I find that oxidation is the single most common problem in beers entered in competition. Who knows, perhaps a pinch of cinnamon in the mash could give your beer an edge.

I agree that oxidation is probably the most common fault I find.  I guess if you're having issues with it then cinnamon would be something to try.  FWIW, I experimented with campden tabs in the mash for a year.  They're supposed to reduce or prevent oxidation, too.  I quit after a year because it didn't seem to make any difference.  I concluded from that I must not have an oxidation problem and I had a solution in search of a problem.

I have done/do the Campden tablet thing too.  Sometime when I forget, there does not seem to be a big issue, even with lagers that I have around for 10 months or more.

The Campden tablet trick was somethign I picked up on the HBD.  There were also discussions about corriander being an anti-oxidant, and the Belgians would use it in the mash.  Too lazy to do a search right now.
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