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Old 08-08-2012, 08:26 PM   #1
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Default Low Efficiency and Flavor

This may be a real beginner question, but can lower brewhouse efficiency lead to off flavors of any kind?

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Old 08-09-2012, 09:02 PM   #2
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Not really. If anything, you'll be extracting more of the good malty/grainy flavor you're after, but probably not enough to make a serious difference. On the other hand, extremely high efficiency can lead to tannin extraction.

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Old 08-09-2012, 09:12 PM   #3
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Many may argue that a lower efficiency can actually improve the taste of the beer. However, if you missed your efficiency estimate and your OG is off, than you may end up with a unbalanced brew that will taste different. If your recipe is 70% efficiency and you end up only getting 50%. Then, your OG will be really low and the beer won't taste the same as one with the correct OG. Still be beer....just be different.

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Old 08-09-2012, 09:29 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hammy71 View Post
Many may argue that a lower efficiency can actually improve the taste of the beer.
Here's a quote from Palmer saying essentially this.
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Old 08-09-2012, 10:31 PM   #5
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What if in the case of very low efficiency (less than 60 or 50%)? I haven't paid much attention to my efficiency. But I am curious if anyone knows.

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Old 08-09-2012, 10:35 PM   #6
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I'm not sure I agree that lower efficiency makes the beer taste better. I'm not basing my response on some fancy Palmer-sciencey theory, rather the few low efficiency brews I have done have tasted bad. As others have said, it could be because the balance is impacted.

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Old 08-09-2012, 10:40 PM   #7
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Quote:
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I'm not sure I agree that lower efficiency makes the beer taste better. I'm not basing my response on some fancy Palmer-sciencey theory, rather the few low efficiency brews I have done have tasted bad. As others have said, it could be because the balance is impacted.
If you got low efficiency and did not make an adjustment to volume, then you didn't hit the beer you were trying to make. Of course it didn't taste as good.

The idea is that if you compare an 85% efficiency batch with a 70% efficiency batch that have identical OG/FG/IBU numbers, the 70% efficiency batch might taste better.

Personally, I don't think anyone should be trying to lower their efficiency to compensate. If you make good beer at any efficiency level, keep on making good beer!
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Old 08-09-2012, 11:27 PM   #8
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Low efficiency could extract too many polyphenols just like high efficiency could. Low is not necessarily better. It could lead you want to over sparge. It's good to know why your efficiency is what it is. Getting good conversion is what is most important. The sparge is only dilution of what was converted and soaked in the grain.

Kai has a great page on efficiency.
http://braukaiser.com/wiki/index.php...ing_Efficiency

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