Gray matter in my grain bed - Home Brew Forums
Register Now For Free!

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing > Gray matter in my grain bed

Thread Tools
Old 02-16-2006, 12:57 AM   #1
digdan's Avatar
Aug 2005
Pasadena, CA
Posts: 494
Liked 6 Times on 6 Posts

I started using phosphoric acid to adjust the pH of my water. Ever since then I've notice a layer of gray material on the top of my grain bed.

This has happened on every batch I've used the phosphoric acid, no matter what my grain bill looks like. Has anyone else experienced this, and mostly... what is it?

Also, since I've used the phosphoric acid, I've noticed that when I boil for long periods of time the proteins develop very long white spider-like strands.

Anyone got any insight for me?

Reply With Quote
Old 02-16-2006, 02:04 AM   #2
boo boo
Jun 2005
Hearts's Delight, Newfoundland
Posts: 4,165
Liked 36 Times on 31 Posts

I get the grey material all the time and as far as I know it is the finner part of protien and malt that rises to the top of the mash after conversion. I could be wrong however, so I'll wait for a more experienced answer.

Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-2006, 06:21 AM   #3
Dec 2005
San Diego
Posts: 848
Liked 6 Times on 6 Posts

"Gray matter in my grain bed "

I knew it had to happen some day- somebody finally brew his brains out...
So far, I've had more experience thinking than I've had don't think they are mutually exclusive, do you?

72 batches so far,
48 wine, mostly Loquat, peach, plum, prickly pear
23 beers and ciders
1 sauerkraut
1 Tequila, from a prickly pear wine experiment that didn't work. I call it "Prickly Heat"

Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-2006, 08:48 AM   #4
Denny's Evil Concoctions
Grande Megalomaniac
Denny's Evil Concoctions's Avatar
Oct 2005
West Kelowna BC, Canada
Posts: 7,733
Liked 67 Times on 53 Posts

I've got grain on the brain, and brain on the grain.

Sounds like proteins filtered out by the grain bed to me.
I may not be an expert, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express........ 6 months ago.

Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-2006, 08:44 PM   #5
Beer Snob
Beer Snob's Avatar
Dec 2005
Posts: 2,041
Liked 5 Times on 5 Posts

Doctors have such a sense of humor sometimes.....went to get wax out of my ear and it was a little grey.... I said... wow... thats all wax (I wear hearing aids so it builds up)... and he said... "Mostly... theres a little bit of brain matter there, but nothing to get upset about..."

"Don't worry, have a homebrew." ,"The "Bible"

Cherries in the wheat
Michael's Wheat

Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-2006, 08:49 PM   #6
I use secondaries. :p
Walker's Avatar
Sep 2005
Cary, NC
Posts: 10,987
Liked 101 Times on 89 Posts

You should have responded "That's unfortunate for you, because I think it's the part of my brain that remembers to pay bills, Doc."
Ground Fault Brewing Co.

Reply With Quote
Old 02-17-2006, 09:40 PM   #7
Janx's Avatar
Dec 2004
San Francisco Bay Area
Posts: 1,677
Liked 17 Times on 11 Posts

I tend to see that stuff in brews with unmalted grains. I figured it was the starches from unmalted wheat. In any event, it's harmless unless it sticks your sparge.

Maybe your adjusting of the pH of your water causes some of the starches/proteins to precipitate out?

As far as the stuff in the boil, I sometimes get "beer bagels". It looks like dough chunks boiling around in there. Again, seems harmless. Hot break on steroids...

Oh don't give me none more of that Old Janx Spirit
No, don't you give me none more of that Old Janx Spirit
For my head will fly, my tongue will lie, my eyes will fry and I may die
Won't you pour me one more of that sinful Old Janx Spirit

Reply With Quote
Old 02-20-2006, 08:47 PM   #8
Jeff Meyers
Feb 2006
Fayetteville, GA
Posts: 19

According to one of the probrewers recently interviewed on the brewing network...the gray stuff is protein.

Reply With Quote
Old 02-26-2006, 09:43 PM   #9
Will work for beer
Dude's Avatar
Jan 2005
Knob Noster, Missouri
Posts: 8,770
Liked 89 Times on 70 Posts

Originally Posted by Jeff Meyers
According to one of the probrewers recently interviewed on the brewing network...the gray stuff is protein.
Yep, Eric Watson form Titletown Brewery (GREEN BAY, WISCONSIN!) said that.

GO PACK, 2-0 in 2006 (so far)
On Tap: Lake Walk Pale Ale -- Eternity (Raspberry Stout) -- Nutrocker -- Donnybrook Dark
Primary: Lake Walk Pale Ale
Secondary: Summit IPA
Up Next: Smoked Porter -- Pub Ale -- Watermelon Wheat
Gone But Not Forgotten:

Reply With Quote
Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Help! - Can't get gray gas connector to come off the post polamalu43 Bottling/Kegging 11 11-04-2008 02:08 AM
SCORE!!! Hefeweizen Yeast from Blue and Gray Brewery devaspawn General Beer Discussion 8 08-05-2008 03:01 AM
Will a day or two matter much? c.n.budz General Techniques 9 10-19-2007 03:48 PM
my wine is gray ? Muntzster Winemaking Forum 4 02-24-2007 10:47 PM

Forum Jump