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Old 12-08-2007, 11:59 PM   #1
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Default Wort chilling

Hey, I'm a nOOb. Big surprise, huh?

If I have 1.5 approx gallons of hot wort, and 3 gallons of cold water in my carboy, what is the purpose of chilling the wort to any specific temperature?

Today (my second batch), I cooled it down to about 110 degrees and poured it into the carboy through a strainer funnel. By the time all of the wort was poured into the carboy and water was added, the 5 gallon total was below 78 degrees, and ready for the yeast.

Am I missing some critical check point?

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Old 12-09-2007, 12:30 AM   #2
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What you did works with 1.5 gallon boils.

But when you're doing full 5 gallon boils, you MUST chill the wort. Otherwise it takes over 24 hours to cool off, and that whole time period is like an incubation chamber for wild yeast/bacteria.

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Old 12-09-2007, 12:40 AM   #3
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Default Aha!

When you do a 5 gallon boil, are you making 5 gallons? Or are you adding THAT to more clear water?

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Old 12-09-2007, 12:41 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Bone2
When you do a 5 gallon boil, are you making 5 gallons? Or are you adding THAT to more clear water?
I boil about 6.5 gallons to make 5 gallons (it evaporates during the boil). No water added, so I need to cool and aerate before pitching the yeast.
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Old 12-09-2007, 03:22 AM   #5
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Default Is that an extract brew

or an all grain?

If it is extract, what would be the advantage of the full boil?

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Old 12-09-2007, 03:30 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Bone2
or an all grain?

If it is extract, what would be the advantage of the full boil?
I do a two pot full boil with my extract recipes. When you boil an extremely concentrated sugar solution, like your 1.5 gallons of worth with all of the sugar that would normally be in a 5 gallon beer, you end up with problems from caramelization. This will change the color and the flavor of your final product. On top of that, you also do not get full hop utilization when you add them to such a concentrated solution. If you don't have the pot capacity to do a full boil, then only boil a portion of your malt extract with your hops, and then add the remaining malt in the last 15 minutes of the boil, just to sterilize it. This will minimize the caramelization problems.
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Old 12-09-2007, 02:53 PM   #7
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I'm surprised that no one has said this yet, so maybe I'm off basis, but someone will probably correct me if I am.

The point of chilling the wort (ie. with a wort chiller) is to create the 'cold brake'. The cold brake is a protein that's in the wort and will settle to the bottom of the pot when it's thermally shocked by rapidly cooling it.

If you don't remove the cold brake protein, you will get 'chill haze' when you chill your beer for drinking it. This isn't suppose to hurt the taste of the beer, but doesn't look good, and the presence of this protein will hurt the storage life of your beer.

Also, your wort is vulnerable to oxidization at any temp. above 80° F. and should not be poured through a strainer until it's bellow that temp.

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Old 12-09-2007, 03:28 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Bone2
If it is extract, what would be the advantage of the full boil?
full boil lowers your gravity in the wort to 'normal' levels.
very high gravity boils, which is what you get with a partial boil of only 2-2.5 gallons, causes a loss in hop utilization.

for example, a full boil's gravity might be 1.050....but done as a half boil, it 1.100. that's a thick wort, and your bittering hops aren't going to impart as much bitterness.

the two solutions are more hops, or lowering the gravity during the first 75% of your boil period by adding no more than half your malt extract. you then add the remainder of the extract in the last 15-20 minutes so it gets sanitized without screwing up hop utilization.
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Old 12-09-2007, 06:34 PM   #9
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Default Can you elaborate

on the "oxidation" that could occur if wort is poured through a strainer at higher than 80 degrees?

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