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Old 01-28-2013, 06:09 AM   #1
Silentbob
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Default stepped mashes.... is it worth the effort?

Been brewing now for almost a year, 9 months of it all grain. I've always done single infusion mashes with a batch sparge. My question is (and before someone tells me to read...I'm breaking out the John Palmer books right now) does it make big enough difference to get you to do it? Is head retention better ect?

I've slowly worked all the kinks out of my brew process and before I go throwing more wrenches into the spokes, I wanted to get your opinions.

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Old 01-28-2013, 10:27 AM   #2
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From listening to Brew Strong & other BN shows, I'd say NO...except for two situations: a high amount of unusual grains in your mash, or for some very specific styles.

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Old 01-28-2013, 10:46 AM   #3
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For me it depends on the base grain. If I am using a pilsner from Belgium, I always start with a protein rest before going into my main starch conversion temps. This has helped to create a clearer beer.

The key here is a short rest, too much and your head retention will suffer.


For most malts this is not needed.

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Old 01-29-2013, 12:58 AM   #4
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Other than clarity, any benefits?

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Old 01-29-2013, 03:15 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Satisfaction
For me it depends on the base grain. If I am using a pilsner from Belgium, I always start with a protein rest before going into my main starch conversion temps. This has helped to create a clearer beer.

The key here is a short rest, too much and your head retention will suffer.

For most malts this is not needed.
What temp and how long for an initial rest?
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Old 01-29-2013, 08:56 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 73Drvr View Post
What temp and how long for an initial rest?
From what I've read... They're 120 - 130 f for 20 to 30 minutes.

I might give this a try this weekend. I'm brewing a triple with about 13 pounds of pilsner.
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Old 01-29-2013, 09:59 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silentbob View Post
Been brewing now for almost a year, 9 months of it all grain. I've always done single infusion mashes with a batch sparge. My question is (and before someone tells me to read...I'm breaking out the John Palmer books right now) does it make big enough difference to get you to do it? Is head retention better ect?

I've slowly worked all the kinks out of my brew process and before I go throwing more wrenches into the spokes, I wanted to get your opinions.
The answer totally depends on the grain bill and your taste. If you like beers that use a lot of under modified grains and adjuncts, or have specific rests based on the style, then it would be worth it to you to step mash. For more standard brews using high percentages of well modified grain like American 2-row, it would be a waste of time and effort. As in everything home-brewing, it's up to you!
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Old 01-29-2013, 12:13 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silentbob

From what I've read... They're 120 - 130 f for 20 to 30 minutes.

I might give this a try this weekend. I'm brewing a triple with about 13 pounds of pilsner.
You got it!

122 for 20 minutes and then 147 for 90 for a nice dry triple.
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