Electric Brewing Supply 30A BCS Giveaway!


Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing > Decoction vs. No Decoction - My Results
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 06-03-2012, 01:55 AM   #1
Newbeerguy
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Newbeerguy's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Massillon, Ohio
Posts: 809
Liked 12 Times on 12 Posts
Likes Given: 8

Default Decoction vs. No Decoction - My Results

I was formulating some recipes for a local hombrew contest this July and I decided I wanted to make an Oktoberfest for it. I came up with a recipe I liked then I though, hmm, wonder really how different it would be I used a traditional decoction mash? Not wanting to scrap my initial recipe I decided to brew 2 similar Oktoberfests...one using an enhanced double decoction and the other using a double infusion.

***EDIT**** Scores for Double Decoction - 32 ------ Score for Double Infusion 41 (Took first place in catagory)


Here are the recipes (not identical, but very similar)

#1 - Enhanced Double Decoction
7lb Vienna
2.5lb Munich
1.5lb Pilsner
.5lb Caramunich

1oz - Tettnang @ 60
1oz - Halleratauer @30
WLP820 Octoberfest/Marzen Lager Yeast w/3000ml starter

OG - 1.054
FG - 1.013

#2 - Double Infusion
6lb Vienna
3lb Munich
2lb Pilsner
.5lb Caramunich
.5lb Carapils

1oz - Tettnang @ 60
1oz - Halleratauer @30
WLP820 Octoberfest/Marzen Lager Yeast w/3000ml starter

OG 1.057
FG 1.014

Both were boiled for 90mins and fermented at 52 degrees then transfered to kegs to lager at 38 degrees. They've been lagering since mid April. I hooked them up to the Co2 about a week ago. Decided to sneek a sample tonight

First I will post a picture I took of them. #1 on the left and #2 on the right.(sorry crappy iPhone image)


Now here is my breakdown:

#1 - The Enhanced Double Decoction

Appearance - Ruby red to copper in color. Had a very small white head. Head dissipated rather quickly (could be due to only being on gas for a week)

Smell - I am getting alot of toffee, caramel, malt, bread. The smell is really pronounced. All smells are "sweet" I am not getting any grainy smells at all. Smells great though.

Taste - Very rich. Tasting that caramel, malt and toffee. Leaving a resin of sweetness in my mouth. Not cloyingly sweet, but the best way I can describe it is "rich". Hops are shadowed by all the malts flavor. Sticks in your mouth for a couple of swallows but finishes pretty dry.

#2 - The Double Infusion

Appearance - It is a touch darker than the first one. Copper to light brown (with red highlights) under the light. Had an off white head that stuck with it the whole glass. Maybe the carapils makes a difference?

Smell - Really I am not getting nearly as much in the way of smell on this one. Perhaps some grains...but no toffee, caramel or anything close to the decocted version. I am quite surprised to be honest.

Taste - This is the big one. The taste is much more balanced. Less pronounced as well. I get grainy, bready, just general maltyness (sp?) It finished a tad drier as well.

Overall I prefer #2...the Double Infusion. The decocted on had a much stronger smell and "richer" taste but I feel it threw the balance off of the recipe. I think with a little tweaking the decocted one could be a much better beer. I really can't get over how much more flavor/smell I get out of it. Color threw me off a bit as well as beersmith anticipated the decocted one to be the darker of the 2 but my results seem to suggest otherwise.

Since I am no BJCP certified judge, I am going to be entering both of these in the contest and will post the results back to see how my palate compares
Just wanted to share my experience with other who maybe contemplating the same thing as I was.

__________________
Newbeerguy is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-03-2012, 03:09 AM   #2
texasbrewer73
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: The Colony, Texas
Posts: 146
Liked 8 Times on 6 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

Nice job creating two Oktoberfests and entering them. Personally, unless the recipe is identical, it's hard to determine which technique is better. The decoction mash is well known for enhancing maltiness. For the Oktoberfest, I'm a fan of the decoction. Its worth it for the one time a year you brew it. Cheating process is cheating flavor and style, IMO.

Not sure how Beersmith anticipated the first one to be darker when the grain bill is .5 lb less and that is the darkest grain you have.

__________________
texasbrewer73 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-03-2012, 03:09 AM   #3
phoenixs4r
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Hayward, California
Posts: 1,506
Liked 54 Times on 49 Posts
Likes Given: 38

Default

Interesting. Really you need to give 2 samples to someone independent (Competition or a friend with a good tongue) to make a real comparison. I do remember reading some statistics of pro brewers that did that and the crowd couldn't tell a difference (Don't ask for source, I don't remember, that was many beers ago.)

Really the physcological (Massively mispell) affect is more important that anyone really knows.

__________________
phoenixs4r is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-03-2012, 03:12 AM   #4
texasbrewer73
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: The Colony, Texas
Posts: 146
Liked 8 Times on 6 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by phoenixs4r View Post
i don't remember, that was many beers ago
+1
__________________
texasbrewer73 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-03-2012, 03:18 AM   #5
Newbeerguy
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Newbeerguy's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Massillon, Ohio
Posts: 809
Liked 12 Times on 12 Posts
Likes Given: 8

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by texasbrewer73 View Post
Nice job creating two Oktoberfests and entering them. Personally, unless the recipe is identical, it's hard to determine which technique is better. The decoction mash is well known for enhancing maltiness. For the Oktoberfest, I'm a fan of the decoction. Its worth it for the one time a year you brew it. Cheating process is cheating flavor and style, IMO.

Not sure how Beersmith anticipated the first one to be darker when the grain bill is .5 lb less and that is the darkest grain you have.
Thank you. I also agree with you that the only way to determine the better technique would be identical recipes. I really had a good time doing the decoction mash and it felt more authentic. I believe when I brew another German style I will use the decoction mash again. This gives me a little insite to what to expect and will better help me formulate the recipe.

As for the beersmith color issue I agree, doesn't seem right to me either....They were close in estimated color, 10.7SRM to 11.2SRM but see father off than that.
__________________
Newbeerguy is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-03-2012, 03:21 AM   #6
Newbeerguy
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Newbeerguy's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Massillon, Ohio
Posts: 809
Liked 12 Times on 12 Posts
Likes Given: 8

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by phoenixs4r View Post
Interesting. Really you need to give 2 samples to someone independent (Competition or a friend with a good tongue) to make a real comparison. I do remember reading some statistics of pro brewers that did that and the crowd couldn't tell a difference (Don't ask for source, I don't remember, that was many beers ago.)

Really the physcological (Massively mispell) affect is more important that anyone really knows.
Yep that is why I am going to enter both of these in the contest. I want to know if it's just me wanting it to be different or if it really is different. As unbiased as I am, it is impossible to rule out. I was actaully a tad dissapointed that I prefered the non decocted one to be honest
__________________
Newbeerguy is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-04-2012, 03:30 AM   #7
pk1
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: chemainus, BC
Posts: 1
Default

If your curious about why the decoction mashed beer is darker read this. Also explains why the flavour is richer.

Wish I could taste them myself!

__________________
pk1 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-04-2013, 10:45 PM   #8
Wig
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Wig's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: , Va
Posts: 240
Liked 6 Times on 6 Posts
Likes Given: 9

Default

Hey NBG, did these make it to the contest? I was curious to hear what the judges said.

__________________

"There's many a slip twixt cup and lip" -idiom

Wig is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-04-2013, 11:23 PM   #9
Newbeerguy
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Newbeerguy's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Massillon, Ohio
Posts: 809
Liked 12 Times on 12 Posts
Likes Given: 8

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wig View Post
Hey NBG, did these make it to the contest? I was curious to hear what the judges said.
Hey wig, yes they did! Since I was limited to only 1 entry per subcatagory, I ended up entering the double decoction one in July, and the double infusion one in another contest in September.

The double decocted one scored a 32. Didn't receive a score sheet back (wasn't a BJCP sanctioned event). Kinda bummed about that. I really wondered how other perceived it.


The double infusion one went on to take first place in its catagory! I entered it in the Sons of Brewzilla contest.

The judges noted big malt and toasted notes. Dry finish. Actually here is a copy of the scoresheet:
Judges Scoresheet

It scored a 39 from on judge and a 41 from the other. I was really excited about that.

I will be brewing that recipe again to see if I can hit it as good as last time.
__________________
Newbeerguy is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply



Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Decoction and hsa? Newton All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing 6 12-31-2011 09:38 PM
Decoction or not Bixter1 All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing 28 09-10-2011 04:14 PM
Decoction zgardener All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing 5 02-09-2010 05:35 PM
decoction aaronwillen All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing 8 12-25-2008 01:24 PM
Should I do a decoction? Ryan_PA All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing 1 07-24-2007 03:07 PM