Author Topic: Oatmeal Stout mouthfeel  (Read 4703 times)

Offline 1 atm Brewing

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Oatmeal Stout mouthfeel
« on: November 15, 2011, 01:06:30 AM »
I'd like to brew a silky smooth oatmeal stout, like Samuel Smith's. My previous batch used 1.5 lbs of flaked oats for a 5 gallon batch, the FG came out at 1.010. I did a single infusion mash at 154F (aimed for 156F but it came in low). Next time I'll mash higher, but is there anything else I can do to boost the mouthfeel?

Use a higher percentage of oatmeal? Employ a protein rest? Alter the water chemistry?
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Offline tomsawyer

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Re: Oatmeal Stout mouthfeel
« Reply #1 on: November 15, 2011, 06:14:33 AM »
Not sure a protein rest is in your interest.  A little more oatmeal wouldn't hurt and give it plenty of time for the glucans to come out.  You can also use a little carafoam or other dextrin malt.
Lennie
Hannibal, MO

Offline beersk

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Re: Oatmeal Stout mouthfeel
« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2011, 11:43:15 AM »
You could also mash a little shorter too.  Try mashing for 45 minutes instead of 60, although I'm not for sure that will make the difference you're looking for.
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Offline malzig

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Re: Oatmeal Stout mouthfeel
« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2011, 08:40:04 PM »
Have you checked the calibration of your thermometer and hydrometer?  1.010 seems awfully dry for an oatmeal stout mashed at 154°F.  However, I'd mash warmer, not shorter, for more body.

Offline beersk

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Re: Oatmeal Stout mouthfeel
« Reply #4 on: November 16, 2011, 08:24:39 AM »
Have you checked the calibration of your thermometer and hydrometer?  1.010 seems awfully dry for an oatmeal stout mashed at 154°F.  However, I'd mash warmer, not shorter, for more body.
I guess I meant with my suggestion to mash warmer and shorter.  Say 158F for 30-45 minutes. 
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jaybeerman

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Re: Oatmeal Stout mouthfeel
« Reply #5 on: November 16, 2011, 10:35:27 AM »
I'd mash warmer, not shorter, for more body.

it's a combination of factors.  thermometer calibration is a good idea. 

bay brewer didn't mention his original mash time, nor what the rest of the grist was, but a 45 min mash is reasonable.

Offline beersk

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Re: Oatmeal Stout mouthfeel
« Reply #6 on: November 16, 2011, 12:33:37 PM »
I'd mash warmer, not shorter, for more body.

it's a combination of factors.  thermometer calibration is a good idea. 

bay brewer didn't mention his original mash time, nor what the rest of the grist was, but a 45 min mash is reasonable.
I was assuming he was doing the standard 60 minute mash.
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jaybeerman

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Re: Oatmeal Stout mouthfeel
« Reply #7 on: November 16, 2011, 12:47:01 PM »
I was assuming he was doing the standard 60 minute mash.

me too. that or 90 min

Offline 1 atm Brewing

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Re: Oatmeal Stout mouthfeel
« Reply #8 on: November 17, 2011, 01:08:50 AM »
I have a digital thermometer that I generally trust. I've had thermometer issues in the past but this one seems to be stable. That said I'll check it in ice water and boiling water the next time I set up to brew. I always seem to loose a few degrees when I pour the liquor into my mash-tun, I haven't dialed in how to adequately offset for that yet.

A few more details on the batch might be helpful: 60 minute mash, single infusion w/ mash-out, no sparge, OG: 1.055, yeast: Wyeast 1028 (London Ale). Dark grains were cold-soaked a day ahead of time so I didn't add any salts to the mash.

tomsawyer: I'm not sure what you mean by "give it plenty of time for the glucans to come out". I agree with the other posters that a shorter mash would help limit the wort fermentability, although I'm not sure how mash time would affect beta glucans. Figure 91 in Chapter 14 of Palmer's book shows the active range of beta glucanase cuts off around 120 F, so a normal mash would denature that enzyme and prevent breakdown of beta glucan during mashing. Are you suggesting that the beta glucans need time to soak out of the grain? If so would doing a "rest" between mash-out and lautering do the trick?
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Offline euge

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Re: Oatmeal Stout mouthfeel
« Reply #9 on: November 17, 2011, 01:52:24 AM »
Why not choose a yeast that finishes higher? Windsor comes to mind.
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline malzig

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Re: Oatmeal Stout mouthfeel
« Reply #10 on: November 17, 2011, 04:59:59 AM »
I guess I meant with my suggestion to mash warmer and shorter.  Say 158F for 30-45 minutes. 
I've found that if you mash warm enough, there's no need to mash shorter and take the risk of incomplete conversion.  Of course a warmer mash will convert faster, so it's less of an issue.
I have a digital thermometer that I generally trust. I've had thermometer issues in the past but this one seems to be stable. That said I'll check it in ice water and boiling water the next time I set up to brew. I always seem to loose a few degrees when I pour the liquor into my mash-tun, I haven't dialed in how to adequately offset for that yet.
"Trust, but verify." 
I'd recommend getting a decent spirit filled thermometer (a "lab" thermometer) to calibrate the digital thermometer against.  It should cost less than $10.  The spirit thermometer should be accurate to start, but can be checked against ice and boiling water.  That kind of thermometer should then be accurate in between those points.  Then, check your digital thermometer against the spirit thermometer near mash temperatures.
 
The temperature you are looking for is the temperature of the mash in the mash tun.  You'll continue to lose heat to the tun for a few minutes after you mash in.  You might want to also check the temperature after 5-10 minutes.  You might find that you are mashing even cooler than you think, even if your thermometer is accurate. 

154°F should give you pretty decent body for a beer the size of an Oatmeal Stout, but go warmer if you're not getting as much as you want.

Offline hokerer

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Re: Oatmeal Stout mouthfeel
« Reply #11 on: November 17, 2011, 12:03:09 PM »
I have a digital thermometer that I generally trust. I've had thermometer issues in the past but this one seems to be stable. That said I'll check it in ice water and boiling water the next time I set up to brew.

Ice water and boiling is one form of checking but you'd be much better off calibrating your thermometer in the normal mash temperature range.  Use a certified thermometer like someone else suggested.
Joe

Offline hokerer

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Re: Oatmeal Stout mouthfeel
« Reply #12 on: November 17, 2011, 12:10:50 PM »
I always seem to loose a few degrees when I pour the liquor into my mash-tun, I haven't dialed in how to adequately offset for that yet.

Another option, rather than trying to figure out the offset, is to just heat your liquor 5-10 degrees higher than your desired strike temp, dump it in, and wait til it drops to where you want it.  Then add the grist.
Joe

Offline tomsawyer

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Re: Oatmeal Stout mouthfeel
« Reply #13 on: November 17, 2011, 01:07:36 PM »
I always seem to loose a few degrees when I pour the liquor into my mash-tun, I haven't dialed in how to adequately offset for that yet.

Another option, rather than trying to figure out the offset, is to just heat your liquor 5-10 degrees higher than your desired strike temp, dump it in, and wait til it drops to where you want it.  Then add the grist.

Yeah but thats the only friggin' time my tun holds temp really well.
Lennie
Hannibal, MO

Offline beer_crafter

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Re: Oatmeal Stout mouthfeel
« Reply #14 on: November 17, 2011, 03:53:07 PM »
How much crystal malt in the recipe?  My oatmeal stout has never come in under 1.018 and often is 1.022.