Mini mash vs. All grain - Mini Mash wins - Page 3 - Home Brew Forums
Register Now For Free!

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Beer Discussion > Mini mash vs. All grain - Mini Mash wins

Thread Tools
Old 08-17-2009, 05:15 PM   #21
BioBeing's Avatar
Jan 2009
Memphis, TN
Posts: 1,520
Liked 10 Times on 9 Posts

Palmer in Designing Great Beer (IIRC) mentioned that many medal winning beers contain some proportion of extract in them. So it is definitely possible to make great beer using a mini or partial mash.

That said, I also wonder about the number of partial-mash brewers vs the number of all-grain guys. If there are 10 X more PMers than AGers, then there is a bigger pool of talent to draw from too, making them more likely to be represented better at competitions. [Not saying either is better or worse - just looking at it a different way! I do AG as I enjoy it.]

Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2009, 06:52 PM   #22
Grinder12000's Avatar
Jul 2008
Columbus WI
Posts: 2,995
Liked 42 Times on 35 Posts

they're going to forget to vorlauf
I don't even know what that is, I'm not sure I have EVER vorlaufed.

BTW - Biobing - LOVE Neil Gaiman.

Back on topic.

I seriously do want to stress this. The people that post on this forum I would have to think are better brewers then your average Joe. If you are into this enough to spend countless hours here you are serious about brewing.

So when I seem to be cutting down AG brewers it is not the HBT brewers beer I'm drinking. It's normally the guys that make a batch every couple months.
Grinders Island Brewery - Pipeline

145 batches and counting

West Coast Blaster #4 almost go and on tap and a Dbl Chocolate Stout aging/carbing. Brewing East India Porter #4

Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2009, 07:03 PM   #23
Sep 2008
Salt Lake City, UT
Posts: 321

We can all argue which is easier and tastes better, forever. In my opinion it all comes down to technique of the brewer. You can have good AG and bad AG, good PM bad PM, good AE bad AE. It all depends on the brewer, my personal favorite is PM as to me it is easier and less time consuming and less equipment to sanitize and clean over doing AG. I feel i have tweaked my techniques enough that no one, not even my beer snob friends can tell the difference as 9 times out of ten they think the PM tastes better, but i've had way more experience with extract and PM's from my early years of brewing to perfect em. Personally i think some people jump to AG too fast, they just hear it's supposed to be better but have not yet had enough time to really work on and perfect their other brewing techniques that will help them in doing AG. But like i said it really boils down to the brewer themselves,
I believe Homer Simpson said it best "Alcohol, the cause of and solution to all of life's problems"

CMAC'S Brewery

Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2009, 07:35 PM   #24
Jan 2009
Chicago, Il
Posts: 1,330
Liked 6 Times on 6 Posts

Originally Posted by david_42 View Post
I cheat. While the mash is on, I bring the sparge water to a boil and toss in the bittering hops. When the mash is done, I drain to the kettle and put it on the burner. The bitter water (with pH 5.2) goes in the mash tun. Stir, drain, add the rest, (Stir extract into kettle) stir, drain. Bring it to a boil. Make the flavor and aroma adds. Chilling takes 15-25 minutes depending on the time of year.

Got the ideas from a pro who worked it out as a way to get two mash runs in a day. He doesn't sparge as hot, but has an instantaneous heater between the mash tun and the kettle.
You hop your sparge water? Thats crazy, I tell yah. Just plain crazy

How's it work out? I would think you'd get lower utilization simply because the hops are getting strained out by the mash...but then again, you're boiling in 1.000, so higher utilization from that...hrm.

Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2009, 09:56 PM   #25
redraider629's Avatar
Mar 2009
Arlington TX
Posts: 177

I switched to AG after only 5 or 6 batches of PM. I think mine is very good, as do others. i think it is better than my AGs. So I do not think that jumping to AG to quick is a bad thing. Sure for some people that have brewed one PM months ago, it may not be that good of an idea. Though if you have a few PMs under your belt, and care anough to put your time into AG, plus you have a good idea on what you are doing through this site, and other research. But than again most people that brew do not spend their times on this site or do extensive research before they start.
Crazy Pig Brewery

Big Drew's BBQ & Brew

Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2009, 10:07 PM   #26
carbon111's Avatar
May 2009
Pacific NW
Posts: 556
Liked 3 Times on 3 Posts

Originally Posted by david_42 View Post
While the mash is on, I bring the sparge water to a boil and toss in the bittering hops. When the mash is done, I drain to the kettle and put it on the burner. The bitter water (with pH 5.2) goes in the mash tun. Stir, drain, add the rest, (Stir extract into kettle) stir, drain. Bring it to a boil. Make the flavor and aroma adds. Chilling takes 15-25 minutes depending on the time of year.
Interesting! Have you posted on the forum about this before? (link please)

I'm curious to hear more about how this is working out for you.

...sorry for being
Best Regards, James
My beer blog:
My website:

Fermenting: Carbon's Grizzly Bear, Young's Special London Ale (clone)

Bottled/Conditioning:Siberian Raven Winter Ale, Cherry Tree Porter, Victoria's Dirty Secret

Drinking: Montgomery Scottish Ale, Thames American Bitter, Crow's Beak Old Ale, Bastet Brown, Carbon's Cascade Ale, Red Silo Honey IPA

Reply With Quote
Old 08-21-2009, 12:35 PM   #27
SpanishCastleAle's Avatar
Jan 2009
Central Florida
Posts: 4,345
Liked 37 Times on 37 Posts

david42, how do you calculate your IBUs doing it that way? Do you just consider your sparge-hops an 'X' minute addition?

FWIW, it's rare for me to have an AG brew session last less than 4.5 hours. But I often have >60 min. boils, I fly-sparge, and my IC is not very efficient (at least 30 min. chill time).
Early brewers were primarily women, mostly because it was deemed a woman's job. Mesopotamian men, of some 3,800 years ago, were obviously complete assclowns and had yet to realize the pleasure of brewing beer.- Beer Advocate

Reply With Quote
Old 08-21-2009, 01:21 PM   #28
The Pol
Feb 2007
Posts: 11,454
Liked 97 Times on 82 Posts

This is like saying that one guy running in Nikes is running faster than ANOTHER runner who is wearing Asics because he is wearing Nikes... but they are different runners!

Bottom line, crappy brewers with crappy technique can make ANYTHING taste bad.

By the same token, a great brewer with great technique can make anything taste awesome.

Now, how "hard" it is to get to that outcome is a matter of opinion, though we do love to piggeon hole people here.

Also, AG is not as long of a process as some make it. I complete 100 minute boils, fly sparging and STILL finish with a 4:30 brew day... reduce the boil to 60 minutes like most use and you are UNDER 4 hours.

Sure I could turn it into a 6 hour thing, but then again Id be wasting a lot of time too... again, it comes down to the individual and what he/she is doing.

Reply With Quote
Old 08-21-2009, 02:48 PM   #29
Vendor and Brewer
Bobby_M's Avatar
Aug 2006
Whitehouse Station, NJ
Posts: 23,384
Liked 1796 Times on 1141 Posts

I take all day to brew because it's my day to chill out and enjoy the process. If I were trying to sprint, I'd just go buy the beer.
Welcome to I love you.
New Stirplates are IN!
Chugger Pumps, Pump Kits, Camlocks, Sightglasses, Clear USA made Silicone Tubing, RIMS, Electric Install Parts, etc.

Reply With Quote
Old 08-21-2009, 03:19 PM   #30
Jun 2007
Arlington, VA
Posts: 266
Liked 4 Times on 4 Posts

I get more enjoyment out of all grain. I'm sure at this point I could have made one of my beers I made all grain better as a partial mash but I'm learning a lot while doing all grain and having more fun doing it.

Also, some styles are likely a bit more difficult to brew to style with partial mash, pale ale because of color, and I'd imagine belgian beers as well. That nice low mash temperature really helps the final product of a belgian beer and I'm not aware of any high attenuation extracts, although I wouldn't be surprised if they existed.

Reply With Quote
Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
difference between steeped grain and mini-mash jar Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 13 01-10-2011 01:07 PM
Determining conversion from All grain to mini mash Echo2112 All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing 5 01-19-2009 04:13 AM
Partial Grain and Mini-Mash... Pelikan Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 2 10-21-2008 04:22 PM
all grain vs mini mash question tim1970 Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 9 03-06-2007 09:57 PM
Mini-mash ingredients with an All-grain method ryser2k All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing 3 03-25-2005 10:48 PM

Forum Jump