you guested it ... some questions

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you guested it ... some questions

Unread postby dottorenova » Sun Dec 07, 2014 8:17 pm

Hi,

I'm taking brewing class in Anderlecht (Belgium). I don't have space for 3v & the lack of easy/reasonably priced control for 3v system bothers me. So that's why BM interests me. I want to buy a 20L version. I asked my teacher what he thinks of the system but he wasn't to keen about it. I respect his knowledge but every road leads to Rome. I'm just interested in taking the road that will result in any type of good beer without off-flavors, brewing mistakes & adjuncts due to faulty equipment. Here are my questions:

1) We start mashing the first 10 minutes with as low water as possible. more precisely 1:2. The reason is the get the oxygen as quickly as possible. Then add the remaining water but at 80°C ( low amount of oxygen in the water) and with the ph 5.6 until the water hits 50°C. His reason: to much water will not get the oxygen out of the water & the malt and the small amounts of oxyen will chemically bind in the wort and you will be left with a beer that will very rapidly age.
> Is this method possible with the BM and if not are there to technically challenge this reasoning?

2) We sparge because a lot of compounds (enzymes etc.) are still left in the wort. His reasoning if you sparge you get better wort efficiency and you clean out a lot of enzymes and other 'stuff' that provide flavor etc. Brewing with to much water to compensate for is not done because you will not be left with a proper beer. Can you do a normal sparge?

3) are there some comparisons review to be found (and to be tasted ;-) ) as to making the same beer with a BM and with a 3V system (of course with a converted recipe)

4) I want to make quads & tripels as well. I would rather die then use some sleeky tricks to get alc. levels up. How is this possible on the BM and is it something that can be done in a reasonable way.
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Re: you guested it ... some questions

Unread postby Dicko » Sun Dec 07, 2014 8:32 pm

From you teachers advice, it appears that a BM is not for you then :cry:

:cheers:
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Re: you guested it ... some questions

Unread postby dinnerstick » Sun Dec 07, 2014 10:02 pm

teacher sounds pretty irrational to me...
wort oxygenation is not taken seriously by most brewers these days. if you think it's a serious problem then test it. make 2 mini mashes and aerate one of them heavily, store the beers a few months. i haven't done this test, but i store BM beers for months and am very happy with the results. admittedly this is from anectodal evidence, but quite a lot of it, there does not appear to be any truth to the mash aeration story.
sparging- you can sparge with the BM, many of us do, but to get enzymes in the wort? the point of mashout is in part to heat-kill the enzymes active in the wort. they are not needed between the last sacc rest and the boil, and they are fully denatured by the time the boil reaches mid 80's. so i don't think this is a valid concern. gaining flavor from the enzymes? not in the finished beer, there is no evidence that mash enzymes contribute flavor and they are denatured either in the mash or in the boil. sparging to rinse out more sugar from the malt, sure, there are threads on this forum with people's experience sparging vs not sparging.
as for tricks to get alcohol levels up in a tripel, they are made using sugar to get the alcohol levels up! the whole style is based on a 'sleeky trick' to get the alcohol level up. so... ?
(it's a great trick that leads to a delicious beer, don't get me wrong!)
i'm not here to defend the BM against 3v or any other system but the reasoning from your mentor is outdated and irrational in my opinion.
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Re: you guested it ... some questions

Unread postby dottorenova » Sun Dec 07, 2014 11:19 pm

dinnerstick wrote:teacher sounds pretty irrational to me...
wort oxygenation is not taken seriously by most brewers these days. if you think it's a serious problem then test it. make 2 mini mashes and aerate one of them heavily, store the beers a few months. i haven't done this test, but i store BM beers for months and am very happy with the results. admittedly this is from anectodal evidence, but quite a lot of it, there does not appear to be any truth to the mash aeration story.
sparging- you can sparge with the BM, many of us do, but to get enzymes in the wort? the point of mashout is in part to heat-kill the enzymes active in the wort. they are not needed between the last sacc rest and the boil, and they are fully denatured by the time the boil reaches mid 80's. so i don't think this is a valid concern. gaining flavor from the enzymes? not in the finished beer, there is no evidence that mash enzymes contribute flavor and they are denatured either in the mash or in the boil. sparging to rinse out more sugar from the malt, sure, there are threads on this forum with people's experience sparging vs not sparging.
as for tricks to get alcohol levels up in a tripel, they are made using sugar to get the alcohol levels up! the whole style is based on a 'sleeky trick' to get the alcohol level up. so... ?
(it's a great trick that leads to a delicious beer, don't get me wrong!)
i'm not here to defend the BM against 3v or any other system but the reasoning from your mentor is outdated and irrational in my opinion.


Thanks for your response. It confirms the "feeling" I have with my mentor.
I know you add some sugar to add alcohol but I was thinking about other tricks ... but if you add a lot of sugar to a lower gravity don't you just get a lot of alcohol/less flavor/complexity?
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Re: you guested it ... some questions

Unread postby Lylo » Sun Dec 07, 2014 11:48 pm

Most Trappist ales and Strong Belgians use sugars in their recipes!
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Re: you guested it ... some questions

Unread postby dinnerstick » Mon Dec 08, 2014 7:01 am

dottorenova wrote:Thanks for your response. It confirms the "feeling" I have with my mentor.
I know you add some sugar to add alcohol but I was thinking about other tricks ... but if you add a lot of sugar to a lower gravity don't you just get a lot of alcohol/less flavor/complexity?


pretty much, yes, but more importantly you get a thinner, drier beer. that's why it's great to use in something like a double IPA or a duvel, where you want a really crisp dry finish, and the added sugar provides you that dryness; you basically have the grain bill of a 1.055 beer in a 1.075 beer (to pluck some plausible numbers from thin air), so, sucrose being 100% fermentable, you have less unfermentable sugar and dextrin than an equivalent all-barley 1.075 beer would have. lower final gravity and dryer taste. conversely, adding sugar would be a bad idea in an english mild, a pils, or any other smaller beer that could suffer from lack of body, but it would, as you say, give you cheap alcohol.
good luck with your decision, i saw you said you have a lack of space, that's why i bought the BM originally, i was brewing in my kitchen. it's great for that, small footprint during use and it packs up small for easy storage. i would suggest finding someone local (there are some on here not far from you) and visiting on brew day do see the mash and boil if possible. and most concerns you might have are likely to have been raised on this forum somewhere! we are admittedly all heavily pro-BM but can definitely help with any specific questions.
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you guested it ... some questions

Unread postby Nesto » Tue Dec 09, 2014 4:31 am

I'll 2nd what dinnerstick said. Not to pile on too much, but it sounds like your teacher doesn't know much about modern brewing science...

1. I assume point #1 is to reduce oxygenation of the wort during the mash? Probably hot side aeration (HSA) is a concern of his? While it's an actual thing, it is not a real concern for homebrewers - check this discussion we had about it... viewtopic.php?f=8&t=185. It might be a concern for commercial brewers, but even there not a big deal.

Also, adding 80C water to bring the mash up to temp is a bad idea. Anything added to the mash over 78C will extract harsh tannins from the grain husks and add astringency to your finished beer. When you raise your beer to mash out temp for a short rest (to 77 or 78C) you are denaturing the enzymes before you get to temps that would extract the harshness from the grain husks.

2. Repeating what dinnerstick said again.. the goal of sparging isn't for enzymes. The enzymes of the mash are being denatured during mash out. The goal is to extract all the sugars possible, but to avoid extracting tannins (why you keep any sparge water at 77/78C)

You can sparge with the Braumeister, but some of us have found that the system is quite efficient without a sparge (it's more efficient without a sparge for me). You might want to read about Sparging vs. No-sparging.

3. Comparison of beers: I don't know any specific published comparisons, but I can give you my own anecdotal comparisons. I've done several recipes on both my brew partner's 3V 10 gallon system and my Braumeister 20 liter. And they seem at least as good. We both have similar fermenters (temperature controlled stainless steel conicals). His is 10 gallon, mine is 5 gallon (20 liters). I've done 3 that I entered competitions from both systems, here are the judges scores... 1. Honey Porter. 3V: 28, BM20: 32; 2. Saison. 3V: 31, BM20: 36 - category 2nd place; 3. Weizen. 3V: 29, BM20: 42 - Best of Show. The porter is probably pretty similar between the two systems. But the step mashing capabilities of the BM20 make pretty clear improvements to the Saison and the Weizen.

4. Quads and Tripels: a lot of recipes will use sugars as mentioned. The one limitation of the BM is starting gravity you can achieve with a single mash - about 1.065 - 1.070. But with sugars or other options like viewtopic.php?f=8&t=138 or viewtopic.php?id=101 you can get over 1.100 wort.
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Re: you guested it ... some questions

Unread postby dottorenova » Tue Dec 09, 2014 2:41 pm

Nesto wrote:I'll 2nd what dinnerstick said. Not to pile on too much, but it sounds like your teacher doesn't know much about modern brewing science...

1. I assume point #1 is to reduce oxygenation of the wort during the mash? Probably hot side aeration (HSA) is a concern of his? While it's an actual thing, it is not a real concern for homebrewers - check this discussion we had about it... viewtopic.php?f=8&t=185. It might be a concern for commercial brewers, but even there not a big deal.

Also, adding 80C water to bring the mash up to temp is a bad idea. Anything added to the mash over 78C will extract harsh tannins from the grain husks and add astringency to your finished beer. When you raise your beer to mash out temp for a short rest (to 77 or 78C) you are denaturing the enzymes before you get to temps that would extract the harshness from the grain husks.


Although it will only get the water up to 50°C. I'm of the same opinion al his beers have a harsh bitterness. I mentioned last week ,when he presented a milkstout of which he seemed proud, that it had a bit of a harshness at the end. Everybody politely disagreed with my opinion and the tutor replied with "it's beer it should taste bitter". :roll:

Nesto wrote:2. Repeating what dinnerstick said again.. the goal of sparging isn't for enzymes. The enzymes of the mash are being denatured during mash out. The goal is to extract all the sugars possible, but to avoid extracting tannins (why you keep any sparge water at 77/78C)

You can sparge with the Braumeister, but some of us have found that the system is quite efficient without a sparge (it's more efficient without a sparge for me). You might want to read about Sparging vs. No-sparging.

3. Comparison of beers: I don't know any specific published comparisons, but I can give you my own anecdotal comparisons. I've done several recipes on both my brew partner's 3V 10 gallon system and my Braumeister 20 liter. And they seem at least as good. We both have similar fermenters (temperature controlled stainless steel conicals). His is 10 gallon, mine is 5 gallon (20 liters). I've done 3 that I entered competitions from both systems, here are the judges scores... 1. Honey Porter. 3V: 28, BM20: 32; 2. Saison. 3V: 31, BM20: 36 - category 2nd place; 3. Weizen. 3V: 29, BM20: 42 - Best of Show. The porter is probably pretty similar between the two systems. But the step mashing capabilities of the BM20 make pretty clear improvements to the Saison and the Weizen.

4. Quads and Tripels: a lot of recipes will use sugars as mentioned. The one limitation of the BM is starting gravity you can achieve with a single mash - about 1.065 - 1.070. But with sugars or other options like viewtopic.php?f=8&t=138 or viewtopic.php?id=101 you can get over 1.100 wort.
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Re: you guested it ... some questions

Unread postby dottorenova » Tue Dec 09, 2014 3:10 pm

Ok I'm convinced. now just wait for the new ones :(
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Re: you guested it ... some questions

Unread postby royco » Thu Dec 11, 2014 5:58 am

If you follow this forum you won't need a teacher :D
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