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Old 09-05-2005, 06:23 PM   #1
gibfried
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Default To Mash Or Not To Mash? - That Is The Question

Hello All,

Clawing and scratching through Ray Daniels book, "Designing Great Beers", I came up with one question...What is this mashing process all about?!

I've boiled up a total of 5 batches, so I'm pretty green. They have all been extract brews with specialty grains pulled out at 170 degrees.

Just need some very basics so I don't scratch a raw spot on top of my brain bucket. What is mashing? How is it done? Is is worth it? Cheaper???

Thanks!


I just popped the first top on a Dark chocolate Stout - it needs a bit more sleep time in the bottle, but DANG!! it was gooooood. I'd like to try a strong coffee stout... Any good recipes?

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Old 09-05-2005, 09:40 PM   #2
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When you brew all-grain you do a Mash. Instead of me trying to explain it, hop over to the Palmer website and read up. He explains it very well:

How to Brew Site

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Old 09-06-2005, 12:10 AM   #3
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Palmer's book is very very good.

In short: Extract is exactly that: sugar concentrate extracted from malted barley. You often use specialty grains to add that extra something (taste) that is lost in the extract. Obviously, orange juice from concentrate is never as good or as true to the orange as fresh squeezed orange juice is - its the same way with beer. Mixing orange juice from concentrate with fresh squeezed would probably yield a better juice than oj from concentrate only - this is the equivalent of the partial mash or steeping system.

Thus, mashing is simply the process by which you soak the malted barley grains in hot water to release the sugar from the barley thus creating your own "extract" so to speak. After the sugar is released from the barley you must rinse the sugar out of the malted barley to get the wort (this is what you boil and add hops to to create beer) - this rinsing process is called sparging. The system you use to keep the grains in the pot or cooler while you rinse/sparge the wort from them is called lautering (this is where false bottoms or manifolds come in).

In short, all grain brewing creates a better end product for less money but the process is more involved and requires more equipment and know how.

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Old 09-06-2005, 01:55 PM   #4
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Actually, Lautering is the process whereby you use the grain-bed to filter out the suspended stuff in the runoff while sparging.

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Old 09-06-2005, 03:45 PM   #5
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Thank you.

That's a great web site! I get it now. I figured it to be a pretty involved process, but it doesn't seem to bad at all. Maybe I'll get a few things for Christmas, and start the all grain thing next year.

Thanks again.

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Drinking: Heavenly Honey Wheat,Chocolate Stout, London Porter, Big Fat Fatty's Oatmeal Stout, Pete's Porter, California Not So Common, Ugly Monk Belgium Abbey, Maple Brown
Upcoming Brew: Bass Clone, Fosters (a light drink for those who think beer has to be light).
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Old 09-07-2005, 07:19 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gibfried
I'd like to try a strong coffee stout... Any good recipes?
I have 6 extract/grain stout recipes. 4 coffee and 2 espressos if your interested.

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Old 09-10-2005, 02:34 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bikebryan
Actually, Lautering is the process whereby you use the grain-bed to filter out the suspended stuff in the runoff while sparging.
You're absolutely correct. Thank you for the correction. I did not intend to make lautering sound as though it referred specifically to the use of a manifold or false bottom - though those are necessary pieces of equipment for the lautering process.
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