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Old 01-26-2011, 01:54 PM   #11
Apr 2009
Posts: 21

Using a pressure boiler effects the speed of the chemical/physical reaction by increasing the boiling point of the liquid inside it. A higher temperature means (usually a faster reaction). I have used it for what I presume to be an isomerizing reaction - conversion of alpha to beta acids with a fair bit of success - it has cut down my brewing time significantly on extract brews in which the hop boil has the longest duration. (I keep meaning to add my process to this page)

Enzymes require a relatively narrow temperature range to work optimally. Because mashing uses the enzymes present in the grain, it has to be carried out under controlled temperature conditions e.g. between 63-68 deg centigrade. So in this case, I don't think a pressure cooker would be helpful for speeding up the mash and in fact would render the mash useless due to the higher temperatures involved.

This is all off the top of my head, so I could well be wrong. Let us know if you find anything else out.

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Old 01-26-2011, 03:01 PM   #12
Mar 2010
Posts: 1,241
Liked 9 Times on 9 Posts

I doubt that it would do anything, as you're looking for a specific temperature in mashing. You can speed up mashing by testing for conversion at say....25 minutes instead of an hour. If you have it then you can continue with the process.

As for boiling under pressures other than atmospheric, I've actually done some looking into this. Here is a link to an abstract of a paper that's relevant (you might be able to access the full text through a university like I can):

The meat of what you want to know is this (quoted from the article):
The results obtained indicate that the rate of isomerization roughly doubled for every 10 C increase in temperature (average change was 229% per 10 C increase). Isomerization of cohumulone to isocohumulone proceeded at a rate equivalent to that of humulone and adhumulone. High temperatures quickly led to degradation products, as evidenced in the dramatic decrease of iso-alpha acid concentration beyond 18 min of heating at 130 C. While the rate of isomerization slowed at temperatures below 100 C, substantial amounts of iso-alpha acids were still produced at 90 C. This is significant if hot wort is held at temperatures just below boiling after the kettle boil is completed, while in the whirlpool, or awaiting transfer to a heat exchanger.

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Old 10-14-2011, 07:39 PM   #13
Oct 2011
Oconomowoc, WI
Posts: 3

I literally JUST walked in from lunch hour and I bought a 6.5 QT pressure cooker on a closeout sale for $35 bucks.

I want to do kitchen stovetop, 1 gallon batch Brew In a Bag all grain. Keep the top off for the entire brewing process because of DME, but once it's cooled and yeast pitched, wanna see how it works out to close it and sit it down on the basement floor see if I just bought a cheap unitank to simultaneously ferment and carbonate a gallon of beer. I could stick the entire cooker in the freezer for a half hour or so to quickly 'cold crash' it and then stick it in the fridge for a day before racking to half gallon growlers.

According to the inserts, it has 13 PSI perfect but then again neither is the entire stovetop process I'm experimenting with..but will be interesting to see what happens.

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Old 01-22-2013, 05:54 PM   #14
Jul 2012
Kingston, ON
Posts: 6

There is a reference to a pressure cooker in this PPS, where it is used as a quick decoction method. Might be a good device for decoction brewing?

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Old 02-03-2013, 07:27 PM   #15
Mar 2012
Falmouth, MA
Posts: 3

I used a pressure cooker to boil hops recently when it was too cold in my garage (20 degrees) to get 11 gallons of wort to a boil. (This was soft of an emergency as I had already mashed and just couldn't get a boil.) I used the usual amount of hops and pressure cooked for about 35 minutes. I rinsed the cooked hops using a small amount of wort that I heated separately. I boiled the finishing hops separately in about 2 gallons of wort.

I did worry about too much pressure, so I kept the boil low and made sure that pressure was being relieved. If it looked clogged I was prepared to take it of the heat, but that didn't happen.

Just tapped the keg this weekend after about 8 weeks of aging. It tastes great. I'll play with this again as it was a good energy and time saver.

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Old 11-02-2013, 05:41 PM   #16
Oct 2010
carlsbad, ca
Posts: 53

I know this is an old thread.

I forgot my 30 minute hop addition in my brown. I'm pressure cooking wort tomorrow for my starters so thought I would throw in a jar of brown with hops in it. Because of the pressure I'm wondering if it will maintain flavor and aroma or just be a bittering hop.

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