boiling grains in partial mash??

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larrybrewer

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I just heard from a friend that he boils all his grains during a partial mash, leaving them in the kettle for the entire 60 minutes after crushing. Does this sound advisable to you? Everything I have read says not to boil grains.

I have never heard of boiling grains on purpose, but I have never done a partial mash batch. I just wanted to check with the experts out there on this issue.
 

Schlenkerla

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I have read recipes that suggest to do this but I assumed the person who wrote it was ignorant to the effects.

How to Brew - By John Palmer - Common Off-Flavors

[FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Astringent
Astringency differs from bitterness by having a puckering quality, like sucking on a tea bag. It is dry, kind of powdery and is often the result of steeping grains too long or when the pH of the mash exceeds the range of 5.2 - 5.6. Oversparging the mash or using water that is too hot are common causes for exceeding the mash pH range. It can also be caused by over-hopping during either the bittering or finishing stages. Bacterial infections can also cause astringency, i.e. vinegar tones from aceto bacteria.
[/FONT]
[FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]The brown scum that forms during fermentation and clings to the side of the fermentor is intensely bitter and if it is stirred back into the beer it will cause very astringent tastes. The scum should be removed from the beer, either by letting it cling undisturbed to the sides of an oversize fermentor, or by skimming it off the krausen, or blowing off the krausen itself from a 5 gallon carboy. I have never had any problems by simply letting it cling to the sides of the fermentor.[/FONT]
 

SumnerH

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Wow, so Palmer and Papazian are at odds here. Very interesting.
They're often at odds. Generally I trust Palmer a lot more (mainly as his work generally represents newer knowledge). Both evolve from edition to edition, and the state of our knowledge about brewing advances fairly rapidly.

And even the newest Palmer has things that have since been shown to be wrong--listen to Palmer's interview on BBR from March 20, 2008 and he himself will point out that things like "hops utilization is affected by wort gravity" and "an IBU is 1 mg of isometerized alpha acids per ml of beer" are wrong, even though he himself printed them in the 2005 edition of How to Brew.
 

HP_Lovecraft

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Wow, so Palmer and Papazian are at odds here. Very interesting.
The entire homebrew industry has been that way since the beginning.

Things like the late extract method, to using bleach, to using aluminium, to topping off with tap, to pitchable yeast, to temp control, to plastics, to airlocks, etc.

It was frustrating to no end when I started homebrewing 15 years ago to read completely opposite "facts" in different books. Somethings make a big difference, and some things have only a trivial effect. That real issue is trying to figure that part out.
 

ajf

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I think many people on this forum would say not to boil the grains. They know that it will result in astringent off flavors. Most of them don't know this from experience, they know it because they have read it in articles written by authors they trust, and/or they have been told it by brewers they trust. I wonder how those authors/brewers "know"
I am different. I made a brew this way back in the 1970's, and I honestly cannot say that I detected any astringency in that brew.
However, I only did it once, and would never do it again; not because it is necessarily wrong, but because it may cause problems, and it is so easy to avoid the possibility.
Having said I'll never do it again, I'll be doing a decoction mash sometime within the next month or so, and that involves boiling the grains.

-a.
 

Schlenkerla

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I myself am paranoid on recirculating my PMs so I don't even want to get that grain powder in my wort. I think on some of the lighter beers I have made I can taste the astringency. Its very subtle but detectable.

I do 4lb. partials in a 2 gallon MLT with a grain bag & false bottom. I have problems recircing it to keep out that grain powder. My all grains batch rarely have with tiny powder particles since it recircs so much better. The taste difference is noticeable. (To the descriminating person.)
 

Kaiser

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I'd actually be more concerned about the starches that are released during boiling and will not be converted anymore than the astringency.

I made Alton Brown's (Good Eats) Pale Ale, which calls for boiling the steeping grains ;) and I don't remember it being particular astringent.

Kai
 
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I'd actually be more concerned about the starches that are released during boiling and will not be converted anymore than the astringency.

I made Alton Brown's (Good Eats) Pale Ale, which calls for boiling the steeping grains ;) and I don't remember it being particular astringent.

Kai
Do you have taste buds? Maybe sucking on raw tea as a child? :D
 

Kaiser

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Do you have taste buds? Maybe sucking on raw tea as a child? :D
Granted it was my first batch and the only one where I kept the grain in the boil. But I do not remember it being astringent. This really wants me want to run an experiment where I take some wort, boil it with some crystal malt for 60 min and ferment it. Just to see if the astringency would be bad. I think it's more a matter of pH than temp.

There schould be others who brewed this recipe to style. What do they say?

Kai
 
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larrybrewer

larrybrewer

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Sounds like boiling grains may not be so bad after all... I guess this warrants more testing.
 

llazy_llama

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Well it;s one experiment I won't be doing.:rolleyes:
To get the same effect, I just chew on a few bandaids while I sip on my brew.

SumnerH said:
They're often at odds. Generally I trust Palmer a lot more (mainly as his work generally represents newer knowledge). Both evolve from edition to edition, and the state of our knowledge about brewing advances fairly rapidly.
True, but even the latest book between the two of them, How to Brew: Everything You Need To Know To Brew Beer Right The First Time by John Palmer (2006), is a bit out of date. HBT is sort of the meta-book; A compilation of Palmer, Papazian, Hieronymus, Daniels, ~5000 years of practice, and ~20 years of hands on experience from people who learned the business from the book writing folks.

HBT is to beer as the Rosetta Stone was to language.
 
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To get the same effect, I just chew on a few bandaids while I sip on my brew.


True, but even the latest book between the two of them, How to Brew: Everything You Need To Know To Brew Beer Right The First Time by John Palmer (2006), is a bit out of date. HBT is sort of the meta-book; A compilation of Palmer, Papazian, Hieronymus, Daniels, ~5000 years of practice, and ~20 years of hands on experience from people who learned the business from the book writing folks.

HBT is to beer as the Rosetta Stone was to language.
You forgot the handfuls of rumor, myth and innuendo!
 

Sensei_Oberon

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Trying to bring this thread back from the dead.....

I made a partial mash IPA yesterday and accidently got the steep temp close to boiling for a minute or so (not paying enough attention)....I quickly pulled the muslin bag and let the water cool down before steeping at 150 F the rest of the way. I knew the best thing to do was toss the grain and get some more, but I was too lazy to mess with it.

Anyone have a guess on the likelihood I will have astringent beer? I'm a bit bummed, because I did my homework on the recipe, including making a THA starter (that is fermenting like a whirling dervish today).
 
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