Sunday, June 28, 2009

XXStout - full mash

I've never done a full mash brew before, though I've been working up to it for a bit, so there was a lot of new here for me. The process is basically the same as for the grain mix in the partial mashes - let the grain sit between 150 - 158 F for an hour, then sparge it with 180 F water to get the wort. The difference is you don't add any malt extracts (or cold water, which gets relevant later) and instead of doing this with a pound or two of grain and a gallon or so of water, you're looking at 14 pounds of grain and 5-6 gallons of water. This is not going to fit in the pasta pot on the stovetop...

On the advice of the guy from the brew shop, I didn't buy their $50 6 gallon brew pot, I went to the hardware store and bought... a deep fryer kit for turkies; I give you, Turkinator II:

Basically its a 7.5 gallon pot and an outdoor gas burner that hooks onto the same tank as our BBQ - all for about $40. I also bought a $25 60 quart eskie from WallMart, and used a combination of the brew-shop guy's advice and this post to convert it to a mash tun with a stainless steel mesh hose (after much back-and-forthing to the hardware shop, and a certain amount of swearing...)

And boy can that Turkinator crank out the BTUs! It took 5 gallons of water from 110 F (43 C) to 190 F (88 C) in about 15 minutes, so I'll need to keep an eye on it when it comes to bringing things to the boil. Cooled the water back to 180 F, poured it in the mash tun with:

13.25 lbs. Pale Malt (2-row)
0.75 lbs. Roasted Barley
0.5 lbs. Black Patent Malt
0.5 lbs Crystal 60L

Left to sit at ~156 F for 1 hour. Sparged with ~5 gallons @ 180 F to 6.5 gallons of wort. Boiled for 1 hour with

1 oz. Yakima Magnum (14.4% AA)


0.5 oz. Willamette (4.6% AA)

for the last 5 minutes. Cooled in an ice bath for aaaaaaaaaaages. Hadn't thought this through, but up til now I've been cooling 3 gallons of wort down to 90 - 100 F and then adding cold water - now I'm cooling twice as much wort, and I have to get it all the way down to ~75 F to pitch the yeast. A cooling system may be necessary (or else I'll just dump it in the sterilised fermenter and leave it overnight before pitching the yeast...) Pitched

1 packet Irish Ale yeast

@ ~80 F (a little warm, but the yeast packet seemed to think it'd be all right, and the yeast was busting to go at this point.)

Initial S.G. 1.066
Final S.G. 1.014

1.066 - 1.014 = 0.052
* 105 = 5.5% abw
* 1.25 = 6.8% abv

Took the keg with Laur and I to Volcano for 2 weeks. Carbonated it in the back of the car on the way there, which was a little haphazard so it left it lightly carbonated, which is good in a stout anyways. Set it in the creek to keep it cool. Very nice!
08/22/2009, 03:03:34 PM

It sploded!

Seriously, this thing was bubbling furiously all afternoon, and this evening it suddenly blew the top clean off the fermenter and halfway across the room! (And that lid is hard to get off; I always have trouble doing it by hand...) Now its bubbling so hard that I can't actually put the lid back on, but I figure with that vigorous a yeast culture going in there any invading bacteria is going to have a hard time getting a word in edgewise - I'll re-seal it when it calms down a bit.

Alpine Amber

Somewhere in here I did another brew and forgot to blog it; the box of packaging has been sitting by the computer for ages. I think it would have been the weekend after the last, which would make it kegged about May 10. This was another run of the Homebrewers Outpost Alpine Amber, which I've done before, but this time as a partial mash kit. Process roughly the same as the last brew, and I completely failed to record SG readings, but the ingredients were:

4 lbs. Briess Golden Light Extract (liquid malt)
1 lb. Pilsen LightExtract (powdered malt)
1 oz. Tradition hops (bittering, 5.8% AA)
1 oz. Centennial hops (finishing, 8.0% AA)
1 vial liquid California Ale yeast
and the bag of mystery cracked grains

Cracked this keg somewhere around the end of June, drank half of it, then left for Volcano for 2 weeks taking the Stout with us. Left this keg in the fridge but with the fridge turned off while I was gone. It was nice before I left, but even nicer by the time I got back - floral, without being sweet.
08/22/2009, 03:01:37 PM