Bezza's Brewdays

Discussion in 'Beer Brewdays!' started by -Bezza-, Aug 13, 2018.

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  1. Aug 13, 2018 #1

    -Bezza-

    -Bezza-

    -Bezza-

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    Brew #8 - Lemon Saison
    BIAB

    4kg Pilsner
    200g Carapils

    20g Centennial - Boil - 60 mins
    40g Saaz - Boil - 30 mins
    1/4 Protofloc - Boil - 15 mins
    50g Cascade - Boil - 5 mins
    20g Coriander Seeds - Boil - 5 mins
    5g Black Peppercorns - Boil - 5 mins
    Zest of 1 lemon - Boil - 5 mins

    Yeast: Mangrove Jacks French Saison

    Target volume: 19l
    Target OG: 1.049
    Target FG: 1.005
    ABV: 5.2%

    Bitterness: 41.9 IBU (although running through a calculator suggests this is more like 55.8)
    Colour: 3.8 EBC (very pale!!)

    This is The Malt Miller's Saison kit, only I added 200g Carapils as I had a bit left over and wanted to make up for expected poor efficiency. Their recipe also called for orange zest but I didn't have one so used a lemon instead. The instructions were lacking in terms of mashing instructions or water volumes but I guess that's because people will have their own preferences on this - just would have been nice to have some guidelines for the novice brewer.

    First time using my Burco boiler for brewing. Fortunately, the thing maintained a rolling boil without any modification which is great. I'd added a SS ball tap and bazooka filter but that's it.

    Mashed in the Burco, using my inkbird to control temperature. I set this at 64.5C with a heating differential of 0.3C. In practice, this wasn't great at controlling temperature and when the heating element kicked in, temps would increase to around 71C. I believe this will result in the extraction of extra unfermentable sugars which means the beer will have more body compared to the intention. Mashed in 20l of water. pH was around 5.7-5.8 without any water treatment (other than a campden tablet) so that seemed ok.

    After mashing, squeezed the life out of the bag and then did a cold water sparge with about 4 litres. Frankly, I'm finding BIAB to be a bit of a pain - holding a grain bag during lautering and then not being able to sparge properly is just awkward. Guess an all-in-one solution would deal with this.

    No issues on the boil and remembered all my additions. Found the coriander seeds to be tiny compared to the ones I normally cook with but can't see that being an issue.

    I don't have a cooler yet so emptied into a FV which I cooled in an ice bath and then added some sanitised, frozen PET bottles. Cooling worked effectively. However, on transferring, the bazooka filter got clogged very quickly and was running at a trickle so ended up tipping everything into the FV for cooling.

    After cooling, syphoned into the actual FV. Bit of crud made it into the vessel but not much.

    Final result was 18l of 1.049 wort. Rehydrated and pitched the yeast at 25C and into the brew fridge.

    Programmed the inkbird to do:
    - 28C for 3 days
    - 28.5C for 1 day
    - 29.5C for 1 day
    - 30C until fermentation finished

    Let's see how this one goes.

    For next time:
    - Think about getting a proper all-in-one solution. If not, at least get a better way of controlling mash temperature
    - Figure out if I should be doing a better job of filtering as it all ends up a bit mucky. Use leaf hops for the boil?
     
  2. Aug 24, 2018 #2

    -Bezza-

    -Bezza-

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    Took a gravity reading yesterday and down to 1.003 already, so got around 6% ABV before priming. Yeast hasn't been particularly flocculent so far but cold crashing will sort that out. Going to leave it at 30C for a couple more days and then slap the temperature down and leave for another week, assuming gravity isn't still moving.

    The initial taste was interesting, of course recognising that it's nowhere near the final product yet. Think it's going to turn into a pretty clean, crisp and dry base beer. Fair amount of bitterness in there but hoping that will mellow out slightly with conditioning. Pepper is very, very subtle and nothing in the way of lemon as yet. Nothing remarkable from the yeast at this stage either.

    Early days but looking promising.
     
  3. Aug 25, 2018 #3

    Dutto

    Dutto

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    Looks good. athumb..

    If the SG is down to 1.003 then I don't think you produced too many non-fermentable sugars! aunsure....
     
  4. Sep 6, 2018 #4

    -Bezza-

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    So bottled today. Funny how you end up with so little in the bottles once you've wasted a bit from kettle to FV, then FV to brew bucket, then brew bucket to bottles. Think I ended up with about 15l in bottles. Still, can't complain.

    Feeling that a lot of my beers have been underprimed recently, so aimed for 2.5x CO2 on this one. Meant 130g of sugar for the 18l batch!! That was based on fermentation being at 31C. Hope that's right otherwise I could have some rockets!!

    FG was 1.001 @ 2C which converts down to 1.000. So that gives me 6.43% plus priming sugar. Pretty close to a 7 percenter.
     
  5. Sep 6, 2018 #5

    MartinHaworth

    MartinHaworth

    MartinHaworth

    Norwich brewer Supporting Member

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    I'm doing a different malt Miller saison as I speak....60grams of lemon zest.....12 lemons...im posting details on my brew thread..

    Saison are lush!
     
  6. Sep 7, 2018 #6

    -Bezza-

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    So my one lemon worth of zest isn't really going to make a difference.

    Initial tastings of this haven't blown my socks off but then that's not always the best judge of the final beer.
     
  7. Sep 7, 2018 #7

    Dutto

    Dutto

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    The 130g looks spot-on for a 2.5 CO2 so hopefully no "bottle bombs" on the horizon! athumb..

    Well done! Looks as if it will be a great brew so go easy when supping it at 7%! :laugh8:
     
  8. Sep 7, 2018 #8

    -Bezza-

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    Thanks. You always know you're on to a good thing when you feel that tiny bit squiffy from drinking the contents of the trial jar.
     
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  9. Oct 14, 2018 #9

    -Bezza-

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    Absolute shocker of a brew last week.

    Brewed up the Big Smoker Porter, which comes out of the new CAMRA book, although ordered as a kit from the Malt Miller. Sounded great on paper:

    Milk Stout
    Method: BIAB
    Boil Time: 60 min
    Batch Size: 20 liters (fermentor volume)
    Boil Size: 23 liters
    Boil Gravity: 1.046 (recipe based estimate)
    Efficiency: 65% (brew house)

    Original Gravity: 1.053
    Final Gravity: 1.014
    ABV (standard): 5.17%
    IBU (tinseth): 24.92
    SRM (morey): 21.63

    Fermentables

    3.7 kg United Kingdom - Maris Otter Pale
    0.24 kg Flaked Oats
    0.22 kg German - CaraRed
    0.17 kg German - CaraMunich II
    0.16 kg German - CaraMunich III
    0.14 kg United Kingdom - Chocolate
    0.036 kg United Kingdom - Roasted Barley
    0.2 kg Brown Sugar
    0.15 kg Lactose (Milk Sugar)
    5.02 kg Total

    Hops
    Amount Variety Type AA Use Time IBU
    20 g Fuggles Pellet 5.9 Boil 60 min 15.48
    12 g Fuggles Pellet 5.9 Boil 30 min 7.14
    6 g Fuggles Pellet 5.9 Boil 15 min 2.3


    Other Ingredients
    Amount Name Type Use Time
    5 g Coffee Grains Flavor Boil 1 hr.
    2 tsp Vanilla Extract Flavor Boil 30 min.
    10 g Dark Chocolate Flavor Boil 15 min.
    150 g Lactose Other Boil 15 min.
    0.25 each Protofloc Fining Boil 15 min.

    Yeast
    Fermentis / Safale - English Ale Yeast S-04
    -
    Notes
    Brown sugar and lactose added 15 mins from end of boil.

    The brown sugar was added to make up for the lack of efficiency in the BIAB method.

    On the day, mash went fine and hit pH5.5. Mashed 17.5l and sparged with 8l at 64.5C

    Only got 1.046 OG which doesn't bode well for a particularly strong beer at the end. Was hoping to get 5% but looking more like 3.8%. Could it be something to do with going for a no-chill method and where I had left the wort overnight to cool, the lactose and/or other sugars had dropped out of suspension when I took the gravity reading (so I only skimmed off the thinner stuff)? Of course I gave it a good stir and aeration before pitching the yeast.

    Also, I'm utterly fed up with BIAB - it's far too messy and too much physical effort. Only thing for it is to get a Grainfather so I'm going to stump up the cash before the next brew! Hoping that saves a bit of time too.

    So meh. But the proof of the pudding is in the eating, as they say, so not giving up hope completely. If it ferments out properly, I'll just have a flavoursome stout that's just not very strong.
     
  10. Oct 14, 2018 #10

    -Bezza-

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    Log of mash temperature:

    20181014_162120.jpg
     
  11. Oct 15, 2018 #11

    Dutto

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    I consider 64.5*C to be a "low" sparge temperature. I heat my sparge water up to 80*C in (summer) and 85*C (in winter) so that I effectively "Mash Out" and stop the production of sugars at the start of the sparge.

    However, don't worry too much, I think you hit the nail on the head with this ...

    ... but if you want to use it as a reason to buy a Grainfather then I say "Go for it!"
     
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  12. Oct 15, 2018 #12

    -Bezza-

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    One of the things I've struggled to get my head around with BIAB is all the water volumes and associated temperatures. Part of me thinks that going for a standardised set of equipment where the various parameters and known in advance should help me in honing my technique. At the moment, it's hard to pinpoint where issues arise - is it technique, is it to way the water volumes are working out etc. Plus being able to lauter and sparge by resting the grain basket on top of the kettle just seems so much easier! Add in the pump for better efficiency and the cooler to speed things up and it's a winner, well, so long as I ignore cost.

    It's definitely happening, I just need to pop out and get one one weekend or find a time when I'll be in for delivery. athumb..
     
  13. Oct 15, 2018 #13

    Dutto

    Dutto

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    Here are the "Mashing Tips" that I brew to. I've had them so long I don't know where they originated but they work for me!

    MASHING TIPS

    Strike Water = 2.6 to 3.0 litres per 1kg of grain.

    Mash for ONE HOUR minimum at:

    • 55*C to 66*C for a High Alcohol – Dry brew.
    • 68*C to 72*C for a Low Alcohol – Sweet brew.
    DO NOT exceed 75*C.
    Stir Mash after 20 and 40 minutes.

    Heat SPARGE water 80*C to 85*C. Note: Lowest in summer!
    Lauter until wort runs clear (using two jugs) and then Sparge at one litre per minute.
    Stop sparge when Boiler reaches 30 litre capacity. (This is usually when runnings reach SG1.008 or below.)


    How this would work with BIAB I don't know because I've never done it. Sorry.
     
  14. Oct 22, 2018 #14

    -Bezza-

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    Just reading back over your post there Dutto and seems I probably mashed a little high to get the alcohol. Annoyingly, the kits from The Malt Miller don't have any real instructions on there so you're left to make up your own mind as to how to approach things.

    Anyway, put the stout into a PB yesterday at a FG of 1.013. That gives ABV of 4.33%

    Primed with 70g table sugar so final result should be 4.5%. That's not a bad result in the end, although probably going to be a little drier than expected at the end of the day.

    Of course I had a little taste of things on the way in and it's tasting amazing already. The chocolate is really coming through, followed by the coffee and then the merest hint of the vanilla. Going to leave this at 19.5*C for a couple of weeks and then condition through til December. Should be good!!
     
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  15. Nov 4, 2018 #15

    -Bezza-

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    Drank a few of the bottles of Lemon Saison over the weekend and offered them round to friends who were over. All told, they went down pretty well. Given the alcohol content, the beer wasn't at all fiery or hot. I've not had a proper saison before so don't know whether it's true to style (the saisons I've had have just been from those "craft" breweries who abuse the saison name as meaning anything strong, hoppy and more hip that an APA). My saison had a very light and refreshing texture, more lager in mouthfeel, but with a boot load of flavour and a good balance of hops. The lemon just, and I mean just, about came through. Would brew again but probably put a bit more lemon and pepper in. Interesting point was how the yeast clung to the side of the bottle rather than settling on the bottom.

    Happy with this one. acheers.
     
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