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LaFours 03-11-2005 07:44 PM

Questions about partial-mash
Hi guys,

I'm looking to do my first partial mash this weekend. Do I need to steep the specialty grains seperately, or just add to the base for mashing?

DeRoux's Broux 03-11-2005 08:00 PM


Originally Posted by LaFours
Hi guys,

I'm looking to do my first partial mash this weekend. Do I need to steep the specialty grains seperately, or just add to the base for mashing?

I always steeped my grains in a smaller enameled kettle. When the 30 minutes was up, I would pour the grains and "tea" through a strainer on top of my brew kettle. Then sparge the grains w/ hot tap water. That way I didn't have all those lose grains after the boil floating around.

DeRoux's Broux

Hatzie 03-11-2005 08:12 PM

When I use to steep, I would do it in a seperate pot and bring it to temp and them put it in the oven for the 30 mins on low. It would always stay at the desired temp.

Janx 03-11-2005 08:23 PM

If I'm understanding your question correcty, you're asking if you should steep adjunct grains like crystal, chocolate, etc malts seperately from your base malt, probably 2-row. If that's the question, then no, you can mix them all together, hold them at the appropriate temperature for the mash, and sparge the whole lot of it together.

Definitely keep all grain out of your boil, but I don't think that's what you were asking.

Also, hot tap water is nowhere near hot enough to do an effective sparge. You want your water at more like 170 degrees F.

I'd definitely do the mash in a seperate pot from your kettle, but I don't think that's what you were asking either. A mini-mash works just like an all-grain batch but with smaller vessels.

Cheers! :D

uglygoat 03-11-2005 08:46 PM

i can mini mash about eight pounds of grain in a 20 quart ss kettle. i have a spigot on it now, and am working on a better filter element than stuffing some scouring pads (the brass ones maybe, not with soap... :D) in the end of the spigot... ;) this lets me drain the wort out and not mess up the grain bed too much. before i was dumping the whole mash through a large collander into my brewpot, then pouring the hot water over, with ok results, but i noticed a better flavor and more punch with the method i describe below.

i add one quart of water per pound of grain to my 5 gallon kettle, bring the water up to about 175 F, take the kettle off the heat, then add the grain and give it a whirl... it should stabalize at about 155 or so. put the lid on it, then it goes into the oven at lowest setting simply to maintain the 155 degees for an hour, oh yea, start yer oven ahead of time if you want to do it this way. i start to boil a bunch of water, usually three or four gallons at this time.

the water i've heated in the other kettle to 170 or sometimes higher as the heat bleeds off when i take it from the stove and loses a bit whilst sparging, i slowly siphon over the mash pot... i poked some holes in the end of a tube and just let it lay across the grain bed and drain the sweet wort out into my beer boiling kettle.

then i add the dme while the kettle is still off the heat and bring it back up to a boil....

enjoy! the enhancement in taste going from a simple grain steep with six lbs of malt extract to a mini mash with half the extract will blow you away. and when you look at the bill, like i do now, you'll say... gah!!!! no more malt extract!!!! i am anxiously awaiting my spring time transition to all grain!

have fun, let us know how it goes.

LaFours 03-11-2005 10:40 PM

Thanks for all the help guys!

I was also wondering if you think I should do a starter on this one. I'm using White Labs California Ale yeast, in the pitchable tubes. I'm thinking it's not necessary, but I bought a little extra DME just in case.

If I did do a starter, would it be ok to make it tonight and brew Sunday? Or is this not enough time?

ps, this is an APA by the way.

LaFours 03-11-2005 10:43 PM

And I actually have a small 2 gallon igloo cooler I'll be using for the mash. This should keep the temps ok, right?

uglygoat 03-11-2005 11:02 PM

plenty of time, make a starter, keep it nice and cozy ;) i made one once and kept it in the basement with the other stuff, and the yeast didn't get off soo well. it did eventually, but almost the same as if i'd just dumped the vial.

DyerNeedOfBeer 03-12-2005 12:22 PM

I think it's just the terminology here, but I'm getting confused... What is the difference between 'partial mash', 'mini mash' and 'all grain'?

Oh and while I'm at it, I have also come across 2-row and 6-row :confused:

Thanks for being patient with a noob :rolleyes:

ryser2k 03-12-2005 09:44 PM

From what I understand, in order of difficulty, it goes
Extract -> Mini-mash -> Partial Mash -> All Grain

Extract uses all malt extract, mini-mash uses about half grain and half extract, partial mash uses about 3/4 grain and 1/4 extract, and all-grain uses... well, all grain.

Correct me if I'm wrong here...

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