Experiment in reducing cold break for those without chillers

Help Support The HomeBrew Forum:

Clint Eastwood

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 2, 2013
Messages
164
Reaction score
60
Hi guys,
I have done 3 brews in the last couple of weeks and tried something new.
I have not had time to build my wort-chiller yet so got to thinking about how I could reduce cold break in the FV.
So far it has worked on the last three brews a treat.
Just before I add the irish moss and final hopping I turn off the heat to the boiler.
I then take 4 litres of ice cold water and plunge them into the hot wort.
I then bring the boiler back up to boiling point and noticed I get a new thick creamy foam just like that of initial boil point.
I keep boiling and it normally cooks back into the wort after 5 minutes.
I then final hop and pitch the irish moss and do the usual 15 minutes boil.
I have found the cold break has been reduced from between 1/2 to 1 inch to a thin layer in the bottom of the FV.
The beers seem much clearer coming out of the Primary to secondary.
Give it a try it appears the cold break drops out with the hot break.
 

graysalchemy

Active Member
Joined
Apr 15, 2010
Messages
53
Reaction score
18
tonybaloni said:
Give it a try it appears the cold break drops out with the hot break.
The cold break is the Hot Break.

You don't need to chill it to get it to drop out, but getting it to drop quicker means that it doesn't transfer over into the primary.

However the main reason for chilling is to get the wort down to a temp so as you can pitch and minimise the risk of infection in the wort. Many people let it cool over night in a bath of water or use one of those collapse-able water cubes which can be filled with the hot wort and the air expelled keeping it sterile. It will then cool naturally and once cold transferred over to the FV.

:thumb: :thumb:
 

Clint Eastwood

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 2, 2013
Messages
164
Reaction score
60
I only have the luxury of 19 litre boils
I use ice water in the bottom of the FV to help cool the wort and pour in the hot wort after about an hour.
Then use a cold water bucket to cool it further.
I was getting much more break in the FV before doing this. This is the only change I made.
It must cause more to drop out with the irish moss but something is happening.
I must admit though being a Yorkshireman the initial experiment was to increase the volume of the wort to get more sugar out over the hop filter. :D
 

graysalchemy

Active Member
Joined
Apr 15, 2010
Messages
53
Reaction score
18
It doesn't really matter if your break material ends up in the FV, thats what happens if you have a plate chiller. Once it has settled out it isn't doing any harm to the beer or its clarity. Some people transfere to a secondary after a few days so called double dropping. As long as you have secured the hot break it will come out especially if irish moss has been added.

As I said it is more important to chill from a sanitation point of view. :thumb: :thumb:
 

Clint Eastwood

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 2, 2013
Messages
164
Reaction score
60
I just look at that wasted space in the bottom of the FV and think beer could be their instead. :cheers:
 

evanvine

Landlord.
Joined
Sep 28, 2009
Messages
939
Reaction score
5
Location
Twixt M1 Jcn27/28, Nottinghamshire
graysalchemy said:
As I said it is more important to chill from a sanitation point of view.
The hell it is!!
After 90 mins boil there's nothing left to "sanitise"!!!
Para watsit rools ko.
The reason for rapid cooling after the boil is to get the "hot break" material out of suspension.
Can only assume you've got bugs under your bed. :shock:
 

Clint Eastwood

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 2, 2013
Messages
164
Reaction score
60
If the cold break and hot break are the same can some please explain how they seem to look different?
I always thought they were different things dropping out.
It's made a big difference after an hour of natural cooling.
Either that or I am getting a better conversion with less crud in the sparge these days.
What do you recon is in the second creamy head? Minerals in the water?
 

Bribie

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 31, 2009
Messages
132
Reaction score
0
Location
Mid North Coast, New South Wales AUS
Hot break is the protein and other materials "broken out" of the wort during the boil and looks like little breadcrumbs floating in the boil. When this has settled out the wort can be drawn off into a chiller, or simply run into a sterile container such as a camping water cube - "no chilling".

As the beer cools down either quickly in a coil or plate system, or slowly overnight in a "cube" a second break occurs. This consists of proteins etc that are soluble in the wort at high temperature but flocculate and drop out at lower temperatures. This is the cold break and not the same as the hot break material.

As posted, the cold break (that looks like jellyfish not breadcrumbs) can settle out and "rob" you of space in the FV, but has little or no effect on the finished beer.

I did a side by side with two "cubes" of identical wort from a double batch three years ago. I poured the clear top halves of both cubes into one FV and the bottom halves with all the gunk and cold break into the other FV and fermented the brews out.
I took samples to a brew club meeting and did a blind test. If anything a few of the tasters thought the cold break beer was a little more intense in flavour but basically little or no difference between the brews, clarity, chill haze etc etc.

I wouldn't worry. Commercial breweries of course try to minimise cold break as it "robs" valuable FV space which costs money but for most home brewers, Cold break is neutral and nothing to lose sleep over.

 

Clint Eastwood

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 2, 2013
Messages
164
Reaction score
60
Wow Thanks Bribie
I understand the process completely now. :clap:
Do you think the creamy head I am seeing is potential cold break or minerals in the water?
 
Top