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Old 11-08-2012, 03:21 AM   #1
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Default High Gravity Gluten Free Brew!

Interested in making a high gravity gluten free brew. Sorry in advance for the book I'm writing, i have a lot of questions/ideas and as i write i get more.

Drawing from this thread as my recipe inspiration: http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f164/chestnut-dark-scottish-ale-possibility-344520/

I really like the idea of a dark Scottish ale, but I also like the higher gravity of barley wines and quads (10 to 15% is ideal for me). Trying to do a mashup


I wanted to get some opinions of how this would work out and how I could get a better end result. My recipe below is for a single shot wort and has a fairly ridiculous OG, from reading it sounds like this will make for a very "estery" brew. I am considering doing a 2 stage fermentation where I save the rice syrup solids (and possibly one of the candis, not sure how that would change taste) and create a second wort and mix it into the secondary to bring final volume to 5 gal in secondary (would i need to re-pitch the yeast?). That would get the 1st OG down some (fewer esters), and still maintain the quantity of fermentables it takes to get over 10% abv.

5 gallon batch

5lb Chestnut Chips (questions below for method)
6lb White Sorhum Syrup
6lb Rice Syrup Solids
1lb D-90
1lb D-180
8oz. Maltodextrin

1oz Goldings @60
1oz Challenger @40
1oz Target @20

Irish moss, yeast nutrient, and S-33

Beer calculus says OG of 1.125 FG of 1.031 with 39 IBU and ABV of 12.5%
not sure if it is calculating the chestnut correctly.

The method I have been reading about for chestnuts is to boil them for 15 min then get to 150 add amylase and steep for 24 hours, have been seeing a lot of questioning as to weather that is really necessary due amylase denaturing after a couple of hours and other reasons. From what I have gleaned from reading here, the reason for the long steep is to allow the difficult to extract starches time to go into solution, the enzyme is there to convert the starches once extracted. Is there a better way? Could one simply boil the chestnuts for say 2 or 3 hours then bring to temp and add amylase (would I get the starches out?). New to brewing with grains so not sure when starches are destroyed or if higher temp makes them easier to extract.

Last thing, I am interested in avoid sorghum all together, only reason I have it in this brew is that its a fairly cheap source of fermentables and adds a bit to body/flavor (i really dont want that twang to come through though). Would I be better off getting rid of it and going straight corn sugar. Or perhaps using medium roasted steel-cut oats as a fermentable( is it even possible) haven't seen much on how-to, just comments that it become porridge. If the oats are not a good fermentable maybe the oats+corn sugar.

Please weigh in let me know what you think. My cup (or bottle as it were) is yours to fill.

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Old 11-08-2012, 07:57 AM   #2
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Default Comments from Theory

Take a look at this thread:

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f164/gluten-free-birthday-barleywine-196056/

and be prepared to wait. As I understand it, the higher the alcohol, the longer it may take to mellow out and the flavours to meld. This is where you can take advantage of using sorghum syrup since everything I've read says the "twang" tends to mellow out with time.

Also, for that high of an ABV, you will prob need to follow a secondary fermentation schedule with a different yeast that has a high attenuation and alcohol tolerance.

However you approach this, please post the results (good or bad).

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Old 11-10-2012, 04:04 AM   #3
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Thanks for your response, took some time to read much of that thread, I think i may do a strong scottish ale while I wait (recipe would be like a stripped down version of this one). I also like the idea of using oak chips/cubes, a gluten free Innis and Gunn clone would be very neat.

Have been marinating on testing the need for the long mash with the chestnuts and I think I have come up with a procedure to check.

What i am thinking is if I boil them with no enzymes, and take a specific gravity measurement every 15 min I should see the gravity slowly increasing until it plateaus at which time i will have extracted all of the starches possible and will be ready to drop down to 150 and add enzyme.

I was reading about using an iodine test, but that is more targeted towards checking for conversion, as with a high starch solution i would just be comparing on black spot to another and not able to quantify a difference.

Please let me know what you think, is there a better way to perform this test?

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Old 11-13-2012, 07:16 AM   #4
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I really like the idea. Give it a go and let us know how it goes. I'd be interested to know if the hydrometer reading would change, since the density of the starch soultion would be different than that of the sugar soultion (wort pre-boil).

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Old 11-18-2012, 03:28 AM   #5
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Received the chestnut chips today.

forumrunner_20121117_201152.png

I am wondering what kind of efficiency I can expect with this approach. Beercalculus says 24 ppg as a Target but I won't know what I reach until after I've added enzymes and given it a chance to convert. Picking up some extra rice syrup in case my conversion is low. I will post my recipe for the strong Scottish ale soon ( a stepping stone before I go for the higher gravity brew above)

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Old 11-19-2012, 03:21 AM   #6
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The recipe for my strong scottish ale:

5lbs. Chestnut
6lbs. Brown rice syrup (60 min)
2 lbs d-90 candi (60 min)

1 oz Goldings (45 min)
1 oz Target (20 min)

Primary for 14 days: S-33, pectic enzyme, clarity ferm (still have some left from my gluten removed attempt)

Secondary for 21+days: 4oz. Chestnut chips (boiled for 10min and drained, considering soaking these in a smoky scotch like Laphroaig or my favorite Lagavulin).

Will probably brew this up black friday (will be a good excuse to stay home).

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Old 11-24-2012, 12:38 PM   #7
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Here are the results from the Chestnut mash

Time Temp Gravity Notes
00:00 200 1.016 Chestnuts into 4 gal boiling water
00:02 200 1.028
00:12 200 1.036 Chestnuts becoming soft
00:22 203 1.036
00:27 205 1.036
00:37 203 1.036 Chestnuts absorbed about ¾ gallon of water
00:47 205 1.036
00:52 200 1.036 Cutting heat to add enzyme
01:22 150 1.041 Add 2 tsp Pectic Enzyme and 1 tsp Amylase Enzyme
01:32 145 1.041 starch test fails
01:50 145 1.041
02:05 145 1.041 starch test fails
02:25 148 1.041
02:45 150 1.041 starch test fails
03:00 150 1.041 Add ½ tsp amylase
03:15 152 1.041 Starch test still fails but better
03:35 150 1.041
03:45 153 1.041 Chestnuts removed, about 3 gal water remain
04:00 151 1.041
04:15 150 1.041 Starch test faint, but still some reaction
04:30 148 1.041 heat turned up for boil


Started to run short of time, so even though I may not have been 100% converted I was satisfied with being close. I have never brewed with grains before, so this was somewhat new to me. Going off of beer calculus' expected PPG of 34, unless my math is off I have reached about 24 PPG with this technique, about 70% conversion.

Due to the slightly low conversion I added an extra 3lbs of Brown Rice Syrup. I ended up with an OG of 1.080, beer calculus says I should have ended up at 1.079.

While working on this today, i couldn't help but wonder if these could be treated in a similar way to normal grains to maximize extraction. After the initial boil to get them soft it seems that they would perform well, but then again i don't have a lot of experience with that so don't take my word for it.

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Old 11-25-2012, 06:32 PM   #8
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Thanks for all the info!

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Old 11-25-2012, 10:45 PM   #9
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Dude! That's awesome data, thanks for taking the time to pass it on. Looks like the chestnuts might benefit from something like a cereal mash. Thanks again!

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Old 12-09-2012, 06:01 AM   #10
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Disaster!

Just transferred to secondary, measured the gravity at that time found it to be 1.060 my final should be much lower in the neighborhood of 1.020. There was tons of airlock activity the first week, slowed until the last two days when there was almost none. Tasted it, could definitely taste the chestnut, but it was definitely lacking in alcohol and was very thick, not a lot of sweetness to it but hard to tell through the hops and chestnuts.

Is this a case of stuck fermentation? What kind of options do I have? Repitch?

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