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Old 11-06-2011, 11:36 PM   #1
permo
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Default Table sugar versus Inverted

This is something I came across online. I found it a nice little read from a brewmaster in Australia

"06-22-2004, 03:03 AM
Guys and Girls,
Just a quick note on Candii sugar, and it's differences from that of normal table sugar (sucrose). Firstly making candii sugar is to understand what it is and how it is different from sucrose or normal sugar. Candii sugar is invert sugar, in that its constituents are broken down by "inversion", simply put, splitting its atoms (how cool does that sound?). To make invert sugar or candii sugar, you are basically making toffee, by heating a sugar syrup to a high tempreature with a bit of citric acid to help the inversion along. The sugar is processed to make candy sugar. And candy sugar has a number of effects on a beer. It has been caramelised, and this gives nice complex flavours, including a nice sweet edge, a distinct aroma, and most importantly, a dense mousse-like head that is so characteristic of Belgian beers.
So let's say you want to make 500 grams of candy sugar. You weigh 500 g of white sugar and into a small pot. Add enough water to make thick syrup. Add a pinch of citric acid (I will explain why later). Now bring to a boil and keep the temperature between hard ball and soft crack (127-135 °C). As evaporation will cause the temperature to rise, have a small amount of water and add a tablespoon every now and then.
The colour will gradually change from clear to light amber to deep red as the boil proceeds. Light candy sugar is a very light pee colour (yes, that type of pee). This can take only 15 minutes. Dark candy sugar is very deep red. This can take hours. Once you are at the colour you desire (and a lot of that is on taste), you let the temp go to hard crack (150 °C). Once it hits hard crack, turn off the heat and pour it into some greaseproof paper. As it cools it will go rock hard. I then put it in the freezer until I'm ready to use it.
Now why add citric acid? This is to 'invert' some of the sugar. Simply put, cane sugar (sucrose) is made up of two other sugars (glucose and fructose) joined together. Yeast must spend time and effort breaking the joining bonds to allow them to get at the simple sugars they need for metabolism. This can also be done chemically in an acid environment with heat. The citric acid supplies the acid, and the heat is there when you make the candy sugar. Invert sugar tastes a bit sweeter than regular sucrose."

here it is in it's original context, I found this especially usefull since I just made 8 pounds of candi sugars in different colors.....there is no doubt the dark amber will lend some awesome depth of flavor to my beers..

http://www.probrewer.com/vbulletin/a...hp/t-1677.html

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Old 11-11-2011, 07:26 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by permo View Post
This is something I came across online. I found it a nice little read from a brewmaster in Australia

"<snip>
This can also be done chemically in an acid environment with heat. The citric acid supplies the acid, and the heat is there when you make the candy sugar. Invert sugar tastes a bit sweeter than regular sucrose."
One of my brewing buddies and I were talking about invert sugar once and he pointed out that the wort is an acid environment and your boil provides the heat.

So... if you are inverting sugar for the purpose of brewing, it isn't necessary. Sugar will invert while in the boil kettle anyway.

edit: also... high fructose corn syrup is the same thing as invert sugar. fructose and glucose.
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Old 11-11-2011, 08:19 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Walker View Post

So... if you are inverting sugar for the purpose of brewing, it isn't necessary. Sugar will invert while in the boil kettle anyway.
Well....it depends. If your using sugar to only to increase alcohol levels or to thin out the beer, then that's true. From the yeast's perspective, it really doesn't seem to matter whether you're using invert or regular white sugar. It all gets feremnted in the end.

Where it does matter is if you're also trying to get flavor and color from the sugar. British brewers have long used different colors of invert sugar for their coloring and flavoring properties. The flavor components a derived from the "impurities" found in the type of sugar that is inverted. they didn't/don't use plain old white refined sugar to make invert, except perhaps for invert No. 1 - the lightest kind. Darker grades were/are made from less-refined sugars similar demerara, turbinado, etc. where a portion of the molasses and other tasty goodies remain.

Traditional British brewers also held beet sugars in great disdain. Yes, when completely refined, cane and beet sugars are indistinguishable, but when partially refined - as the sugars they used to make invert from were/are - the flavor contributions from inverted beet sugars were considered to be undesirable. Obviously the Belgians disagree.

I've made my own dark invert syrups and used them to brew actual british ale recipes from the late 1800's and early 1900's and can say from my own experience that there are very good reasons to go to the trouble of making your own invert sugar if you are breweing certian kinds of beer. they do make a color and flavor difference.

that being said, if your recipe calls for Invert No1, you CAN use white sugar as a direct substitute. Some folks like to use Lyle's Golden Syrup as a sub for Invert No. 1 but be aware that Lyle's imparts a certain flavor profile (which might be perfecly fine in an British bitter) so it's not a 'neutral' ingredient like cane sugar/invert No. 1
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Old 11-13-2011, 02:35 AM   #4
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Well....it depends. If your using sugar to only to increase alcohol levels or to thin out the beer, then that's true. From the yeast's perspective, it really doesn't seem to matter whether you're using invert or regular white sugar. It all gets feremnted in the end.

Where it does matter is if you're also trying to get flavor and color from the sugar. British brewers have long used different colors of invert sugar for their coloring and flavoring properties. The flavor components a derived from the "impurities" found in the type of sugar that is inverted. they didn't/don't use plain old white refined sugar to make invert, except perhaps for invert No. 1 - the lightest kind. Darker grades were/are made from less-refined sugars similar demerara, turbinado, etc. where a portion of the molasses and other tasty goodies remain.

Traditional British brewers also held beet sugars in great disdain. Yes, when completely refined, cane and beet sugars are indistinguishable, but when partially refined - as the sugars they used to make invert from were/are - the flavor contributions from inverted beet sugars were considered to be undesirable. Obviously the Belgians disagree.

I've made my own dark invert syrups and used them to brew actual british ale recipes from the late 1800's and early 1900's and can say from my own experience that there are very good reasons to go to the trouble of making your own invert sugar if you are breweing certian kinds of beer. they do make a color and flavor difference.

that being said, if your recipe calls for Invert No1, you CAN use white sugar as a direct substitute. Some folks like to use Lyle's Golden Syrup as a sub for Invert No. 1 but be aware that Lyle's imparts a certain flavor profile (which might be perfecly fine in an British bitter) so it's not a 'neutral' ingredient like cane sugar/invert No. 1
This guy has it right! I am not inverting the sugar for the purpose of creating more alcohol or lightening the beer. There is a caramel flavor achieved from darkening the sugar at 250 for varying lengths of time that is delightfull. My dark amber inverted sugar rocks take around 1.5 hours to caramelize to the appropriate color.
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Old 04-18-2013, 05:26 PM   #5
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Yes, I know... Zombie thread but....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Walker View Post
One of my brewing buddies and I were talking about invert sugar once and he pointed out that the wort is an acid environment and your boil provides the heat.
No.

You boil is only 100 degrees Celsius. You need 150 degrees Celsius to invert sugar.
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Old 04-18-2013, 06:10 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by woozy View Post
Yes, I know... Zombie thread but....



No.

You boil is only 100 degrees Celsius. You need 150 degrees Celsius to invert sugar.

Not if you forget to stir from being half cocked while brewing and scorch the bottom.
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Old 04-19-2013, 04:44 AM   #7
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I know this thread is 2.5 years old, but since it got back to the top of the field I thought I would point out that at no point does an atom get split to make invert sugar from table sugar. Molecules may get split, but you're left with the same C, H and O atoms as before.

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Old 04-19-2013, 04:05 PM   #8
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... that at no point does an atom get split to make invert sugar from table sugar. [
God, I hope not!

Basically, i don't think the original cited australian brewer knew what he was talking about. Nor did the guy saying sugar gets inverted in the boil.

I'd add something but I don't know what I'm talking either.

Sugar atoms... sounds like a sixties pop band...
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Old 06-20-2013, 01:21 PM   #9
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I have been using inverted sugar for awhile now and it has been kicking goals for some really good flavours and i think it helps the hydrated yeast.

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Old 10-01-2013, 03:31 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woozy View Post
Yes, I know... Zombie thread but....



No.

You boil is only 100 degrees Celsius. You need 150 degrees Celsius to invert sugar.
The reaction actually takes place at 50c - 60c, think you were getting your f and c mixed up.

Quote:
Hydrolysis is a chemical reaction in which a molecule breaks down by the addition of water. Hydrolysis of sucrose yields glucose and fructose about 85%, the reaction temperature can be maintained at 50–60 °C (122–140 °F).
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Invert_..._the_inversion

So it looks like it can and probably does happen in the wort boil. However, the separate process may be useful for sugars added later in the ferment or for those of us who are brewing other things besides beer and may not be doing any wort boiling.
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