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Old 08-15-2011, 06:15 PM   #1
Rolly
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Default First barleywine..have questions

I'm doing my first big beer this week. I batch sparge in a 10 gallon cooler and get about 70-75% efficiency with average gravity beers. I'm going to do a 5 gallon batch of English barleywine that has 14lbs maris otter and .5 lb crystal 90. The OG is supposed to be 1.082.

Should I expect my efficiency to be lower with this much grain? If so, what are my options? Could I just add 2 more lbs of maris otter, leave the crystal the same, and end keep my process the same as normal?

Or do I need to run off a ton more wort, enough for like a 2 hour boil? I'd rather keep the boil at the standard 60 minutes if possible.

Thanks for any tips.

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Old 08-15-2011, 06:28 PM   #2
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I doubt you'd lose too much efficiency with 14.5 lbs of grain, but I'd plan the recipe for 70% if that's the low end of your efficiency. If you plan for 75 and get 70, you'll be around 1.077 with that amount of grain. That's not quite a barley wine.

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Old 08-15-2011, 06:30 PM   #3
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Yes, you will likely get an efficiency drop! I think adding a couple more pounds of MO is a good idea.

You could also sparge with more water. You definitely want caramelization in a barleywine, so you should do at least a 90-minute boil. Maybe even 120 minutes in order to not only increase your efficiency, but also to get the desired caramelization.

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Old 08-15-2011, 06:32 PM   #4
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You efficiency will be lower if you have a higher pre boil gravity, as you will leave behind more sugars in the grain. I can't say any numbers, but adding more grain will help.
You could also sparg it twice to make two beers (the second being weaker).

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Old 08-15-2011, 06:36 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LVBen View Post
Yes, you will likely get an efficiency drop! I think adding a couple more pounds of MO is a good idea.

You could also sparge with more water. You definitely want caramelization in a barleywine, so you should do at least a 90-minute boil. Maybe even 120 minutes in order to not only increase your efficiency, but also to get the desired caramelization.
So should I add 2 lbs maris otter and leave the crystal as is? This won't affect the profile of the beer at all? Half a lb of crystal 90 already seems pretty low...maybe the 90 minute boil with help give it more color & flavor?
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Old 08-15-2011, 06:39 PM   #6
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I'd add 2 lbs of marris otter which would put you at 1.087 with 70% efficiency. Then do a 120 minute boil. The extra sparge water required to get you to the higher pre boil volume should help with efficiency.

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Old 08-15-2011, 09:05 PM   #7
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i know i have been watching my efficency on my system (not really a good comparison) but as i go above the 10-12lb mark on my system i see signficant loss of effiencency

doing a normal beer of 11lbs i typically run about 83-84% as i approach the 15lb mark it drops to 78-80%

when you look at the percentages on a chart it actually becomes and exponential graph. But i would say if your normally at 75 for a "normal" beer, i would take 5pts off that efficiency and add the extra grain

plus as you add the extra grain you have to add they crystal too to keep the percentages the same. and if your shooting for that high of a gravity its not going to be a real big deal if you go a bit higher... even in an English BW due to the hops are not the main focus.

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Old 08-15-2011, 09:30 PM   #8
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Quote:
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So should I add 2 lbs maris otter and leave the crystal as is? This won't affect the profile of the beer at all? Half a lb of crystal 90 already seems pretty low...maybe the 90 minute boil with help give it more color & flavor?
If you want to stay true to the malt ratios in your original recipe, then you should add an extra ounce or two of crystal 90 also. In a barleywine, you don't even really need any caramel malt, though, it won't hurt to have a little bit. You can make good barleywines with just a base malt, especially if you are using MO.
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Old 08-15-2011, 11:17 PM   #9
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Have a couple pounds of light DME on hand just in case. It won't affect the flavor and will bump it a few points

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Old 10-11-2011, 07:58 PM   #10
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Didn't want to start a new thread; I have some questions about batch sparging my first barleywine.

I'm using a 10 gal Rubbermaid MLT
The recipe calls for 20# of grain

Quick calcs:
I'll lose 2.5 g to absorbtion
I'll need to get 7 gallons into the kettle
So I was planning to do a no sparge, but to get 7 gallons out I'd need to mash in with 9.5 gallons of water. no way I'll get that plus all that grain in the MLT.

Should I just mash in with 8 gallons, run off 5.5 and top off the kettle with another 1.5 gallons of water? Sparge and run off just the 1.5? Or do a typical batch 1.25 qt/# mash and sparge, knowing I'll have some left over?

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