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Old 09-12-2012, 09:10 PM   #1
SHOCKER4620
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Default Pumpkin ale partial mash questions

so, I created a pumpkin ale partial mash on 8/21. Mind you this is my second time brewing anything. My first was a extract.

steps below

Mash
1lb Caramel Wheat Malt
1lb Caramel/Crystal Malt -60L
1lb Pale Malt 2 Row
8 oz. Chocolate Malt
58oz Libbys Pumpkin canned

mash in - 5.38qts of water at 161 degrees
step - 149/150 for 60 minutes
had to add 2 qts for heating and cooling purposes

sparge- 168 degrees with a total 3.5 gallons

Made sure I had 5 gallons before boil
pre boil gravity 1.02

6lbs ALE - 60 minutes
29oz libbys pumpkin - 30 minutes
1lb brown sugar - 60 minutes
2tsp ginger root - 10 minutes
2 cinnamon sticks - 10 minutes
1tsp nutmeg - 5 minutes

hops - 1 oz northern brewer - 60 minutes

post boil - 1.061

now this is where things kinda went bad

took me hour and a half to cool to just 80 and i pitched at this temp

yeast - california ale V - white labs WLP051

======================================

Ferment - Primary

7 days at 73 degrees

no/little krausen

little maggot looking things in the brew, but they weren't maggots. I'm thinking grain or yeast.

========================

Secondary

7 days at 73 degrees

final gravity read 1.018

bottled
====================================

QUESTIONS

1. FIRST OFF, DOES THIS RECIPE LOOK ALRIGHT? I JUST WENT OUT AND CREATED IT MYSELF.

2. WAS THIS THE RIGHT YEAST TO USE? JUST WORRIED BECAUSE THERE WASN'T OR LITTLE KRAUSEN

3. WHAT DO YOU THINK THOSE LITTLE MAGGOT LOOKING THINGS WERE?

4. LASTLY, WHEN I BOTTLED, IT SEEMED THERE WERE ABOUT 3 TO 4 BOTTLES THAT HAD SEDIMENT THAT WENT HALF WAY UP THE BOTTLE. I'M ASSUMING THIS IS NOT RIGHT CORRECT? I DON'T THINK I STRAINED IT ALL OUT CORRECTLY. ADVICE PLEASE.


THANKS

DAVID

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Old 09-12-2012, 09:56 PM   #2
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I think I would have used less caramel malts and left out the chocolate malt. For your future brews, I'd recommend using light extract rather than amber-- then you can use more crystal malts to darken color and add more flavor/character. Your yeast choice is your choice as you made the recipe. Try it, if you like it, that's all that matters. The 'maggots' are probably just yeast floating in your beer. The sediment in the bottles is probably pumpkin or could be spice/trub/yeast. Depends on how well you siphoned and cleared the beer. Pumpkin ales with pumpkin in boil are notorious for huge trub.

I think it'll turn out just fine. You'll enjoy it bc you made it. May not be the your favorite beer of all time but you'll learn and improve. Congrats on your first recipe!

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Old 09-12-2012, 11:18 PM   #3
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Sounds good to me,Partial mash. I did a Pumpkin on my third beer.And my first partial mash as well.Your sparge seemed a bit heavy not shure if that matters really,but normally you use about the equal amount or maybe a little more,than you mashed with-Im not 100% on that. How did you strain or,did you rack after the wort cooled? I think it could have benefited for sitting a few more weeks to clear more.Sounds like.
I think CaliV is a good yeast to use(I really liked all the beers I made with it) with those temps though it could get pretty estery. That might be a good thing for a pumpkin possibly though. If not age it.
Did you rerack to a bottleing bucket when you bottled?

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Old 09-13-2012, 02:32 AM   #4
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Thanks guys! I agree, I think it would have benefited if I left for a few more weeks. Plus, I have a cheap little strainer. Yes, I reracked to a bottling bucket. I think it will be fine. I think I rushed it though.

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Old 09-13-2012, 02:55 AM   #5
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This beer should turn out alright. I've never done a pumpkin beer, but I did a sweet potato beer in the same vein as this. I have a few suggestions on the recipe:

1 - Your mash looks really light on base malt. The caramel and chocolate malts have already been converted and provide no diastatic power. You have 1lb of 2-row to convert 3.5 lbs of pumpkin - not going to happen. Since it's a partial mash, you're not going to pay a big penalty for this but it would be worse if you were doing AG and counting on the gravity points from the pumpkin.

2 - The mash time/temp combination looks a bit off. When I mash at 150 or below, I use a 75 or 90 minute mash. Conversion takes longer at lower temps. Alternatively, a 60 minute mash would be just fine with a temp around 154-156. This would give you more body and more residual sweetness from the mash.

3 - Resist the urge to pitch at a higher than optimal temp. Every single time I have done this, the beer turns out mediocre. Not bad, but clearly not as good as when the wort gets chilled all the way. My first AG batch, I didn't have a chiller so I let it sit in the fermenter overnight to cool down and pitched the next morning. The beer turned out fantastic. I wouldn't recommend it as a regular practice, but it goes to show that if you practice good sanitization you're not going to get an infection if you wait a while before pitching.


As for the sediment in the bottles, it's kinda hard to avoid with beers like this. I recently bottled a chili coconut beer. Got coconut floaties in some of the bottles. Hey, it's homebrew. If I end up making a ton of it maybe I'll figure out a better way to filter it, until then it's good enough.

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Old 09-17-2012, 04:42 AM   #6
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I am about 36 hours into a pumpkin beer extract based kit that I made with the same yeast. Wlp051. I have no krausen at all and there is little to no activity in the airlock. Not sure what is going on. I didnt make a starter, but I think I might take a gravity reading tomorrow to make sure something is going on. It looks like a decent recipe. I had my pumpkin in a mesh bag to prevent excess trub. I pitched at 76 and have kept it around 68-70 with no activity. Weird. Hope your beer turns out good!

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