Decoction vs Infusion

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doublegun

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Trying to get a stellar head on a beer. Has anyone brewed the same recipe using a decoction mash vs a single infusion and found that the finished beer had a better head? From my research, it seems that one of the keys to good foam on hefeweizens is due to decoction mashing. Thinking of applying this to Belgian Strong Golden. We're after that meringue like head of Duvel. We have a good recipe, has turned out very nice using an infusion mash, but missing the head. It seems our techniques are sound, save for controlling the fermentation temps. Pretty much a straight 68-70F. Here's a recipe we may try soon.

10.25 lb Pilsner (2 Row) Bel (2.0 SRM) Grain 69.49 %
2.00 lb Cara-Pils/Dextrine (2.0 SRM) Grain 13.56 %
2.00 oz Saaz [4.00 %] (60 min) Hops 20.7 IBU
1.00 oz Styrian Goldings [5.40 %] (25 min) Hops 9.7 IBU
2.50 lb Corn Sugar (Dextrose) (0.0 SRM)


This is for a 6 gal. batch. The Cara-Pils is an attempt at good head. Thinking of trying this as a decoction. Thanks
 

slnies

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+1 on D*Bo's suggestion. The extra protein will create good head better than the cara- pils. I think you are headed in the right direction though. The second thing that I would do, is raise the mash temp a little or do a step mash. That is my two cents. S.
 
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doublegun

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Most recipes I've seen for this style call for a mash of 149-151F, again using a single infusion. So, up the mash temp, lose the Cara-pils, add a bit of wheat, and single infusion? Hate to seem noob, just that SWMBO and I are huge fans of Duvel. We'll be brewing tomorrow, trying to get all the boxes checked. Unable to step mash, we use an Igloo mlt. I guess we could step mash in the kettle, dump the whole mash in the (now) lauter tun and sparge. Then again, we have all the ingredients for an APA, that would be way easier.

Thanks, guys.
 

squiggy

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slnies said:
+1 on D*Bo's suggestion. The extra protein will create good head better than the cara- pils. I think you are headed in the right direction though. The second thing that I would do, is raise the mash temp a little or do a step mash. That is my two cents. S.

wow. hold on there. I know that cara-pils is called dextrin malt, but don't go thinking that dextrins are all your extracting from it. it is of very low modification allso and contains alot of the same protiens of flaked barley. It will give good head.
 

instereo13

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I vote decoction. You can kill 2 birds with one stone.
you can start your infusion mash at 122 which is prime head retention forming time. pull a decoction, boil it, then add it back so you'll then hit your sacc temp (145-150).
I did this for a saison and it ruled and was really really really easy
 

slnies

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squiggy said:
wow. hold on there. I know that cara-pils is called dextrin malt, but don't go thinking that dextrins are all your extracting from it. it is of very low modification allso and contains alot of the same protiens of flaked barley. It will give good head.
Hold on there squiggy, I just stated an opinion that wheat is better than cara-pils for head retention and creation of said head. Not that cara-pils won't do the job. Take to heart as well that many Belgium styled beers contain wheat in the grist. Wheat is just more traditional.:tank:
 

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