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Old 08-18-2009, 03:34 PM   #1
c0bra
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So I brewed a sweet stout last night and figured I'd use my new Barley Crusher to crack the specialty grains, right? I did some searching on HBT and found that most people thought the factory setting of 0.39 thousandths was just fine.

It never crossed my mind that that applied to all-grain mashing and not extract steeping because I got way way to much grain dust and a ton of tanniny bits in the steep. I also used a new bag that didn't filter nearly enough so I had to spend about half an hour skimming husks out before I started the boil.

Anyway, I'm trying to RDWHAHB but I was curious if anyone has had luck aging out tannin flavors? It will probably stay in bottles till winter starts in earnest, and being as it's a sweet stout maybe I can adjust with more lactose (put in .5 lbs to start) to balance any astringent flavors I find at bottling?
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Old 08-18-2009, 03:38 PM   #2
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i would wait until you have astringency flavors before you start tweaking. Treat the problems as they come up because for all you know there may not be astringency flavors present.
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Old 08-18-2009, 03:44 PM   #3
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Usually it is temperature of steep which determine the tannins leached from the husks. Were you steeping above 170?

Also, how much steeping grains are we talking about? It takes a lot of husks to impart a noticable astringent or tannin-y quality to the beer.

When I first started brewing I went with Papazian's steep method where I added the grain and then brought it all the way to a boil and then removed the grain. Even with such an extreme I never noticed any husky quality to the beer, of course that was close to 20 years ago so my memory of the beers could be suspect.

EDIT: On rereading your post I really can not figure out why you believe you have tannins in your beer. All grain would be more at risk of tannins because of the volume of husks involved, not less. For me the rule of thumb I use for grain crush is , if the sparge doesn't stick then the grind was not too fine. I have never had any astringent quality from shredded husks and my crush produces a sizable amount of flour.
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Old 08-18-2009, 03:56 PM   #4
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Yep, crushed is crushed, whether it's all-grain or extract with steeping grains. There should be some crushed (not shredded) husks, and some flour when you're done. It sounds like you got a good crush. Mine is set at .036" right now, I believe. You probably just need a finer grain bag. You'll be fine with the brew you did- a few grains in the boil won't hurt anything.
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Old 08-18-2009, 05:06 PM   #5
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Astringency can be removed with gelatin.

But as yooper says, don't try to fix a problem until you know you have one.
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Old 08-18-2009, 05:40 PM   #6
c0bra
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dontman View Post
Usually it is temperature of steep which determine the tannins leached from the husks. Were you steeping above 170?

Also, how much steeping grains are we talking about? It takes a lot of husks to impart a noticable astringent or tannin-y quality to the beer.
Yea, I steeped at 175F. This was maybe a bit over 2 lbs of grains, so relatively not that much I suppose.

Quote:
EDIT: On rereading your post I really can not figure out why you believe you have tannins in your beer. All grain would be more at risk of tannins because of the volume of husks involved, not less. For me the rule of thumb I use for grain crush is , if the sparge doesn't stick then the grind was not too fine. I have never had any astringent quality from shredded husks and my crush produces a sizable amount of flour.
I'm not certain that I do, but there was a distinct odor that I noticed immediately. As others have advised, I'm not planning on doing anything until I see how the beer comes out, rather I was just curious how others have handled it.
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Old 08-18-2009, 05:51 PM   #7
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Next time, try to steep at 150-155 degrees (175 degrees is too high) and use a finer mesh grain bag to contain the grain. It still should be ok.
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Old 08-18-2009, 06:05 PM   #8
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^+1 you steeped a little high but the grain bag should have held most of the husk's when you drained it. The Husk is where tannins are produced I used to have some of the flour and a little bit of husk left in the water after steeping the grains. So any that were in there during the boil wont effect the finished product all that much.
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Old 08-18-2009, 06:46 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YooperBrew View Post
Next time, try to steep at 150-155 degrees (175 degrees is too high) and use a finer mesh grain bag to contain the grain. It still should be ok.
Are there not enough enzymes in the specialty grains to break anything down at those temps?
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Old 08-18-2009, 07:38 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by david_42 View Post
Astringency can be removed with gelatin.
Never heard of that one? How does that work?
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