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Old 11-17-2012, 08:23 AM   #1
Ash_Mathew
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I was just wondering if anybody used citric acid when making their wort rather than at fermentation just to get things kicked off? Be a little bit like making a giant batch of Belgian Candi syrup, but would save time either making it separately, or buying batches of it from a shop. It would also give a better colour of the beer. Add more to the beginning for stout and porter, slightly later for beers and lagers. Just a thought, and to see if anybody else does this already.

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Old 11-17-2012, 03:09 PM   #2
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Explain? How would citric acid be like making a giant batch of Candi syrup?

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Old 11-17-2012, 05:23 PM   #3
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Because if you are adding sugars in to the the wort/boil it is in theory the same practice as making Candi sugar. Only watered down. I will give it a try on my next batch and see what happens.

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Old 11-18-2012, 03:56 AM   #4
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I don't understand. How does adding citric acid to sugar equate to making candi syrup? I thought candi syrup was just caramelized sugar (since the only ingredients listed in candi syrup are beet sugar and/or date sugar).

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Old 11-18-2012, 08:01 AM   #5
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Have you not made it at home? That is what I would have thought it was at first. Then I read a few recipes online and they all said to use it. Apparently it just helps the process of breaking down the bad part of the sugars. Figured in that case, this could also speed up the brewing time too.

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Old 11-18-2012, 05:09 PM   #6
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Oh, right. Acid aids in the inversion of sucrose molecules, but cooking sugar has the same effect. See here: http://www.themadfermentationist.com...ndi-syrup.html

I'd be curious if it has any effect other than, well, making the beer a little more acidic, but I kinda doubt it'll prove signficant.

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Old 11-18-2012, 05:16 PM   #7
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Yeah, that's it. But I kind of meant helping to get the 'amber' colour during the brew, rather than having to make a separate batch of syrup, then do a brew. Tried it today. Although I only had a wee bit of it left. So I don't think it will have done anything at all. I will try again on my next one.

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Old 11-18-2012, 07:17 PM   #8
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I'm not positive, but I don't think inverting the sugar changes the color; I'm pretty sure that only comes from caramelization, which is why there are clear candi sugars and syrups--they're just not caramelized. I haven't been able to find anything suggesting invert sugar caramelizes more readily or at lower temperatures than plain sugar. Another way to darken wort is through maillard reactions, which are enhanced by adding nitrogen (i.e. DAP) and occur more readily in alkaline solutions. See the discussion here: http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f13/inve...59/index4.html. Maillard reactions are responsible for the so-called "kettle caramelization" that occurs in a long boil of the wort; boiling sugar-water for a long time won't result in any darkening unless you boil off so much water that you can get the sugar hot enough to caramelize. If it's maillard reactions you want, it seems that adding acid would most likely inhibit the process, if anything.

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Old 11-19-2012, 04:25 AM   #9
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Adding citric acid to the wort will do bugger all for colour. Like igliashon said you need the caramelize the sugar to get the colour and when it's in a wort the temperature will only get to about 100C (212F). I haven't done it for a while and off the top of my head I think you need temperatures about 230C (450F) for caramelization. If you add too much citric acid to a brew you risk getting a citrius taste in it. You can use it to help with the mash but I prefer to use phosphoric acid to adjust pH as you require less and doesn't impart a taste.

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Old 11-20-2012, 05:23 PM   #10
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Aye, I will put it down to an early morning crazy thought. One that I didn't actually put too much thought into. Haha Cheers though, guys.

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