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Old 06-21-2012, 02:58 AM   #1
hmmmbeer
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Default Charlie Papazian's Joy of HB protein temp break down questions/ideas...

This is a question/thought provoked by Charlie Papazian’s book (Joy of Home brewing) in regards to the breakdown of proteins at different temps (page 244 mainly). It says “At temperatures between 113-122 F certain proteolytic enzymes break down into amino acid proteins that help the yeast. It also states that between 122-140F it helps improve the foam potential and aid in clarity. Is this why people do different temps in their mash, to help with both worlds stated?
I think I’m reading this right but I love learning when its about beer so please correct my thoughts if I’m wrong.

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Old 06-21-2012, 04:22 PM   #2
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Step mashing it´s done for several reasons, I do it because it´s really easy for me (I´m a Braumeister user/owner). I use celcius so you´ll have to do the conversion to Farenheit. First you can do an acid rest between 35 an 37 Cº, this ferulic acid rest was used in areas with really soft water to help the mash get to the rigth PH level and it´s not use very often anymore anyways some people still do this and some recipes call for it. Then you have your protein rest that help to cut down longer protein chains that cause chill haze for example, this rest it´s done between 43-44Cº and 55 Cº from 10 minutes to half an hour. A protein rest in the lower side of that temp will help you with medium and small size proteins, a rest in the higher end of those temps with bigger protein chains. It also depends of the malts that you are using, well modified malts don´t need a protein rest, some people in this forum will tell you that actually a protein rest with american 2-row for example will lead you to thin and watery beers with no head retation, this is true if you do a protein rest in the lower side of that temp for a long time but in my expirience a protein rest around 52 Cº for no more than 10 minutes will help you a lot twiking the proteins in your beer. An user of this forum (I don´t remember his nickname) used a very good methaphor for this he said that only twiking your sugar conversion without touching your proteins it´s like touching the bass and not the trebble in your stereo (or something like that) I agree 100% with that, even with overmodified malts if you dough in at let say 50 Cº or a little higher and ramp up your mash temp to the desired level without any rest (only the time that takes you to get to your target temp) you´ll see benefits in your clarity and head retation. When brewing with some german pils malts that are not very well modified or when using a lot of adjuntcs a protein rest it´s a must.
Then you have another temps for sacarif. your beta and alpha amylase. Beta-amylase it´s done between 62-65 Cº that temp will give you a very thin fermentable wort and then another rest at around 71 Cº for alpha-amylase for your dextrines (no more than 20 minutes)
You can do one more step at 76 - 78 for a mash out to denature all mashing enzimes.
I´m not gonna say that my beers are great (we all think our beers are great) but I step mash every time and i get clear beer with great head retention and very good lacing even with over modifed malts.
Some brewers don´t like the extra work of the step mashing, for me it´s no problem at all. To each their own.
PS: I´m fairly new to brewing so if anyone haves something to say about this please do so we all can learn.
I´m sorry about my english I´m doing the best I can

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Old 06-22-2012, 01:58 AM   #3
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Thank you for your reply the break down in another brewers words help.

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Old 06-22-2012, 10:21 AM   #4
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I just read this again and besides the general data put in other words I don´t think I answer your question :P. I´m going to try again:

There is nitrougenous components in your wort this are: protein, polypeptides, aminoacids and nucleotides. Of this group, aminoacids are key to fermentation perfomance and beer quality: during the early stages of fermentation the yeast will take up aminoacids and use them to grow and store them in vacuoles to be use later in their metabolic activity, this is mostly done at early stages when there is very little ethanol presence (ethanol inhibits aminoacid transport), also doing this in early stages yeast wins in a "competitive race" with others microorganism taking nutrients from the wort to deprive other possible competitors of them. It was a common believe that during mashing the protelysis (the breakdown of proteins into polypeptydes and aminoacids) stopped at 60 Cº (140 Fº) this is not true, the fact it´s that this breakdown of proteins into aminoacids it´s faster at the regular protein rest temperatures cited above but it is conducted anyways at higher temperatures.
Polypetides are responsable for head formation and depending how hydrophobic they are head retantion (hydrophobe is the proterty of a molecule for which it´s repelead from a mass of water).
So a protein rest will reduce the presence of complex and (i´msorry but i don´t know the term in english) "pre-proteins" into polypetides and aminoacids. The longer chains of proteins cause among other things chill haze. That´s why a protein rest helps those three things: clarity, head formation and retation and yeast nutrients. Not knowing your malt and doing a proccess that is not correct WILL lead you to thin watery beers with no head, the proteins will break down in aminoacids and not polypetides so no head or body there and a very high fermentable wort.
Depending if you protein rest at the low side of those temps or the higher side you will get more aminoacids or more polypetides. You should aim for a balance.
This been said there is not actual an imperious need of a protein rest with modern well modified malts, first because they are already modified and proteolysis will still perform at saccarification temperatures but your beer body, mouthfeel, claritity and the presence of nutrients for yeast will be improved with a protein rest at the correct temperature.
So to try to keep it short and simple: it will help you with both worlds nutrients for yeast and clarity and head only if it is done at the correct temperature for the correct amount of time depending on your malts, technique, equipment (there is so many variables). There is a lot more in your wort that carbohydrates (read: starches, simple and complex sugar etc) and with a single infusion mash you are only tweaking a very small part of your wort chemestry.
So that´s why I step mash and protein rest. I don´t know if this is the kind of answer that you are looking for or if my english makes any sense at all or if some of the terms are not well translated. I even doubt if I´m correct or not but my experience (not a very long one I only been brewing all grain for 4 months and only 14 batches so far) tells me that this is correct.
If you need more info about this I will be more than happy to adress you to some books.
Brew on!

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Old 06-22-2012, 12:50 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hmmmbeer View Post
Is this why people do different temps in their mash, to help with both worlds stated?
The large majority of homebrewers typically do not do step mashing; single temp infusion mashes are pretty much the norm. As Obliviousbrew pointed out, this is because the grains these days are highly modified and you can get away without doing a protein rest.

This is not to say that Obliviousbrew writeup isn't accurate (looked pretty good to me), or that step mashes aren't used or useful in certain situations. My point is that single infusion mashes will be sufficient for 90-95% of beers you'd be interested in making. There is always the opportunity to make the hobby more complex and exciting however!

Another thing to keep in mind....Papazains book is good but it seems like it is always one step out of date, despite the revisions made to it. The publishing of that book was definitely a watershed moment for the hobby, but from a technical, how-to standpoint there are much better resources out there. No disrespect to CP...
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Old 06-22-2012, 02:49 PM   #6
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Agreed, most folks do single infusions. It is easier. Many make very excellent beer doing so. I almost always do a step mash. I like to be more involved in the mashing process. I like to make full use of all of the proteins and carbohydrates components of the malt (bass and treble - my metaphor).

I think a step mash (done properly) is one of those things that can kick your beer up a notch and go from good, to excellent.

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Old 06-22-2012, 03:26 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pjj2ba View Post
Agreed, most folks do single infusions. It is easier. Many make very excellent beer doing so. I almost always do a step mash. I like to be more involved in the mashing process. I like to make full use of all of the proteins and carbohydrates components of the malt (bass and treble - my metaphor).

I think a step mash (done properly) is one of those things that can kick your beer up a notch and go from good, to excellent.
I agree agree and agree again. Now I remember it was your methapor! I owe you the copyrigths for it! it´s a great one!
I think that the more you get involve in every proccess of brewing , more control you have. Understanding and controling the proccess will only lead you to better final product
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Old 06-23-2012, 10:04 PM   #8
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Thank you guys, I have been brewing for I'd say nearly 3 years now and have only done single infusion mashing but as you said, I am looking to see what I can "complicate" in the brewing and be more involved in the process and pull every bit of what i can out of those amazing little grains! I'm going to try messing with the mashing. Thanks again for all the thoughts!

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