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Old 10-26-2009, 08:40 PM   #1
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Default Protein rest in a partial mash?

I have been brewing for about one year and have yet to make the leap from all extract with grain steeping to partial mashing or all grain brewing. Recently I was introduced to all grain brewing by some friends and was a little overwhelmed with some of the concepts. Mainly protein rest.
1. I understand the potential role for PR in all grain brewing for under-modified barley, however am curious if there is a role for PR in partial mashing or even in extract brewing with the addition of steeping grains at typical PR temperatures rather than the higher steeping temps often found in recipes.
2. Can any significant amount of amino acids (proteins) be extracted for the purposes of PM brewing or extract brewing wth steeping grains?
3. Would PR in these settings offer any benefits to yeast nutrition or foam potential?
4. Or perhaps are most PM or all extract/steeping recipes typically designed using fully modified barley that does not require PR?

I appreciate any thoughts anyone has to offer. Thanks!

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Old 10-26-2009, 08:57 PM   #2
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Any brewer that would introduce the concept of a protein rest to a curious non-all grain brewer is doing a disservice. There are a billion recipes you can brew with a single temp infusion mash. I would call step mashing an advanced all grain topic.

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Old 10-26-2009, 10:45 PM   #3
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I almost never do a protein rest. Most of the beers I make are single infusion, and that works for about 95% of the beers I make.

Even wheat beers don't usually require a protein rest. Also, a protein rest is not only unnecessary with well-modified malts, they can also be ill-advised. A protein rest can wreck havoc on head retention!
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Old 10-27-2009, 09:40 PM   #4
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Yeah I used to do a protein rest because Papazian says he does one every time he brews. But I noticed my head retention sucked, and so I've gone to single-infusion.

And you're right that a PR is best utilized in under-modified malts, but who sells under-modified malt these days? It's just not necessary or worth it. That goes for partial or full mashes.

And by the way, there's not really much of a difference in procedures for partial or full mashing... just introduce yourself slowly to get comfortable with the idea of mashing, and then work up to a full mash. Heck you could even start by mashing just 2 pounds of grain in one of those steeping bags that comes with recipe packs. I sometimes do this if I want to make small quantities of wort for making yeast starters. It's basically the "Brew in a Bag" method you'll see mentioned on the forum.
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