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View Poll Results: Should I Decoct My Amber Lager?
Yeah, it'll make a huge difference. Do it, without a doubt! 10 18.87%
No, it's not worth the extra time and effort. 13 24.53%
Maybe...but only if you have the extra time to burn 24 45.28%
Other... 6 11.32%
Voters: 53. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 08-31-2007, 12:49 PM   #21
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I'm still of the opinion to not do the decoction when there's any pressure on the back end regarding time. You can probably get it done in seven hours, but decoctions are really only worthwhile if you're going to be able to really enjoy the process. Otherwise, toss in some melanoidin and do a single infusion. But, that's me speaking for myself, I like to be - unhurried - when I brew. It can't feel like work.

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Old 08-31-2007, 01:20 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by delboy
Are you planning on doing the whole temp rise by direct heat in the mash tun or are you planning on still doing the boils and just using the direct heat to make minor upward changes in the temp.

My understanding (very limited) is that its the boiling of the mash that produces a lot of the interesting profiles and not just the staged temp rises in themselves.
I'm still doing the full-on double decoc by boiling a portion of the mash. But my main mash vessel will be a 32qt kettle, to allow for easier temp modulation. What I'm going to do is only add back a portion of the boiling mash, stir it in, and see what temps I have. It's easier to raise the temps on a direct-heat mash than it is to lower it (see: ice cubes).

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Originally Posted by the_bird
I'm still of the opinion to not do the decoction when there's any pressure on the back end regarding time. You can probably get it done in seven hours, but decoctions are really only worthwhile if you're going to be able to really enjoy the process. Otherwise, toss in some melanoidin and do a single infusion. But, that's me speaking for myself, I like to be - unhurried - when I brew. It can't feel like work.
Well...I guess I'm not on as much of a time crunch as I let on. Yes, Tech-ECU kicks off at noon, but the magic of DVR means that, if for some reason I'm not done by noon, it's no big deal. Just more extra DVR time to skip through timeouts and commercials. So, yeah, I'm definitely doing the double decoc.

I was actually reading about vienna mashes this morning in Designing Great Beers, and Daniels talks about how they did a third decoc, but instead of removing the mash, they drained some wort from the spigot and boiled that for awhile. Has anyone done this?

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Originally Posted by Baron von BeeGee
Decoction: I think it's a fun procedure when you have time. Does it make a difference in taste? I'm not so sure, at least with the grains that are available to us. I do get a big spike in efficiency, but for some people it's not worth the hours. I would hate to be put on the spot and have to pick a decocted beer out in a blind taste test.

Sometimes I do decoctions because I feel like it, and sometimes I do them because I want to step and don't have room for an infusion.
Well...damn. Here I am all set to do a decoc, and Baron throws this at me. The poll results are far from conclusive. Maybe I should just meet in the middle and do a single step decoc.

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Old 08-31-2007, 01:26 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Evan!
I was actually reading about vienna mashes this morning in Designing Great Beers, and Daniels talks about how they did a third decoc, but instead of removing the mash, they drained some wort from the spigot and boiled that for awhile. Has anyone done this?
I read quick, I thought you were going to a game or something....

That sounds like doing a thin decoction. What you need to be careful about is that most of the enzymes are in the liquid ("thin") portion of the mash. So, you can boil some of the thin mash to get to mashout temp (since you're trying to denature the enzymes at that point). But, you generally want to stick to boiling the thick part (with fewer enzymes) prior to the sac rest.

At least, that's my understanding, The Good Baron is expert in these matters, not I (98% of what I know about decoctions I've picked up from Baron, Kai, and Glib).
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Old 08-31-2007, 01:33 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the_bird
I read quick, I thought you were going to a game or something....

That sounds like doing a thin decoction. What you need to be careful about is that most of the enzymes are in the liquid ("thin") portion of the mash. So, you can boil some of the thin mash to get to mashout temp (since you're trying to denature the enzymes at that point). But, you generally want to stick to boiling the thick part (with fewer enzymes) prior to the sac rest.

At least, that's my understanding, The Good Baron is expert in these matters, not I (98% of what I know about decoctions I've picked up from Baron, Kai, and Glib).
Yeah, unfortunately Daniels didn't go into many specifics about why they did it, he just said that it was popular with vienna decocs.
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.primary | bright:
98: Moss Hollow Soured '09 72: Oude Kriek 99: B-Weisse 102: Brett'd BDSA 104: Feat of Strength Helles Bock 105: Merkin Brown
.on tap | kegged:
XX: Moss Hollow Springs Sparkling Water 95: Gott Mit Uns German Pils 91b: Brown Willie's Oaked Abbey Ale 103: Merkin Stout
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Old 08-31-2007, 01:38 PM   #25
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Well, with triple decoctions, it's typical that the third decoction is for mashing out. IIRC, the second decoction in a double is often to get to mashout temps, as well. I have heard of boiling the thin for mashout, and IIRC it's usually a quick boil. Again, as long as youv'e converted, no problems boiling the thin mash at that point. You just need to be careful how much of the thin mash you boil prior to the sac rest, so that you don't denature too many enzymes.

Damn, I need to do another decoction! I forgot that I had purchased a vial of hefeweizen yeast, I think for a dunkelweizen.... maybe I'll do that, decocted, up at Glib's house.

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Old 08-31-2007, 01:57 PM   #26
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Yeah, according to my mash schedule, I should hit mashout temps from the second decoc...so the third step would seem unnecessary.

BTW, thanks for the help on this. It's like starting all over again.

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.planned:
•Scottish 80/- •Sweet Stout •Roggenbier
.primary | bright:
98: Moss Hollow Soured '09 72: Oude Kriek 99: B-Weisse 102: Brett'd BDSA 104: Feat of Strength Helles Bock 105: Merkin Brown
.on tap | kegged:
XX: Moss Hollow Springs Sparkling Water 95: Gott Mit Uns German Pils 91b: Brown Willie's Oaked Abbey Ale 103: Merkin Stout
98: Yorkshire Special 100: Maple Porter 89: Cidre Saison 101: Steffiweizen '09 (#3)
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Old 08-31-2007, 02:01 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yeast Infection
i dont think decoction are all that much more work, at least not an extra 2 hours as posted above.
+1. I always decoct my hefeweizen (single and double)... and if you some rough planning/math ahead of time, it is not appreciably harder. Then again, it may just be that I don't know what I'm doing.
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Old 08-31-2007, 02:10 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Evan!
Yeah, according to my mash schedule, I should hit mashout temps from the second decoc...so the third step would seem unnecessary.

BTW, thanks for the help on this. It's like starting all over again.
That's how I felt. It's really not hard unless you're an idiot like me. But, if I hadn't had Kai to show me how the process worked at a basic level, plus guys like Glib and Baron (AND NO THANKS TO DUDE!), I wouldn't have considered doing it myself.

It's like taking the step from extract to all-grain; if you love the process of making beer, you'll love the process of doing a decoction.
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"I'm kind of toasted. But I looked at my watch and it's only 6:30 so I can't stop drinking yet." - Yooper's Bob
"Brown eye finally recovered after the abuse it endured in Ptown last weekend, but it took almost a full week." - Paulie
"no, he just doesn't speak 'stupid'. i, however, am fluent...." - motobrewer
"... I'll go both ways." - Melana

That'll do, Pigley. That'll do.
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Old 08-31-2007, 02:16 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the_bird
That's how I felt. It's really not hard unless you're an idiot like me. But, if I hadn't had Kai to show me how the process worked at a basic level, plus guys like Glib and Baron (AND NO THANKS TO DUDE!), I wouldn't have considered doing it myself.

It's like taking the step from extract to all-grain; if you love the process of making beer, you'll love the process of doing a decoction.
Yeah, it sounds pretty intense, and I love the process of AG rather than extract...so much more rewarding.

Been watching Harvey Birdman Season 2 on DVD. A effin' love that show. Ha HA!
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.planned:
•Scottish 80/- •Sweet Stout •Roggenbier
.primary | bright:
98: Moss Hollow Soured '09 72: Oude Kriek 99: B-Weisse 102: Brett'd BDSA 104: Feat of Strength Helles Bock 105: Merkin Brown
.on tap | kegged:
XX: Moss Hollow Springs Sparkling Water 95: Gott Mit Uns German Pils 91b: Brown Willie's Oaked Abbey Ale 103: Merkin Stout
98: Yorkshire Special 100: Maple Porter 89: Cidre Saison 101: Steffiweizen '09 (#3)
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Old 08-31-2007, 02:43 PM   #30
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I think decoctions do matter, but they can be a pain in the butt. I screwed up one of the four I've done and burned the grain. The result was awful. My first rule of decocting that I've since learned - watch your pot like a hawk and stir like hell with a sturdy utensil.

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