First All Grain Batch

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icenine

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I figured I'd skip steeping specialty grains and partial mash altogether and just make the jump from being an extract brewer to all grain. The size of my brew pot limited me to a <3gallon volume which is fine with me for now, though I have a feeling a 10 gallon kettle is in my near future. So to start out with the minimal equipment I purchased a barley crusher, immersion chiller and some grains. My plan was the brew in a bag approach.

I figured I'd come up with my own recipe (SMaSH type) and here is what I used.

5.5 lbs Pilsener Malt
Willamette Hops
.5 oz 60 min
1 oz 15 min
1 oz 5 min
Fermentis US-05 Dry Yeast packet

I heated about 4 gallons of water to ~166F (strike temp?) and added the crushed pilsener malt slowly, mixing constantly to make sure I dissipated all of the dough balls. I took a temperature measurement and found the water around 160F so I added about a quart of 45F water which brought the temp down to about 153. The pot was wrapped in a couple of towels at this point and left for about 45 min. I stirred the mash a bit at this point and took another reading (145F), so I turned the burner on for about a minute to raise the temp back up to around 152 for about another 20 minutes or so and then raised the temp to about 170 for 10 min for a mash out phase.

So out went the grain bag and on to the boil stage. After the boil was complete I cooled the wort quickly down to about 70 and pitched the yeast (hydrated). My sample read around 1054 on the hydrometer, so it appears that I did get some conversion, though I don't know what efficiency this would be. The resulting batch is happily bubbling along in my fermentation chamber at 64F.

I did notice that there really wasn't much of a hot break when the boil started, and the krausen in the carboy is quite anemic. Could this be due to the 100 pilsener malt?

I think my thermometer might actually read a few degrees lower than the actual temp, so my mashing temperatures may have been a little on the high side. Also, coupled with the first 5 or so minutes of the mash spent at 160+, I wonder what the effects will be on this brew.

Oh yeah, I know It'll be beer and am looking forward to the end result. I think this one'll be called either Bear Tooth Pale Ale or Pale Willamene Ale.

Ice-Nine
 

jtakacs

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85% at 3 gallons, but that's final volume... certainly less than that, but admirable, congrats on the switch...

fwiw, when i did partials, the krausen was always larger and more aggressive... i've had quiet fermentations, loud ones (literally) and normal ones - nothing i have seen visibly has ANY indication on final product. i've had aggressive looking fermentations that didn't attenuate and mild ones that hit 80%.
 
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icenine

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Oops, Final volume of just less than 3 gallons I should have said.
 
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icenine

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Just bottled off this batch. 21 bottles in total (16 oz). The brew looks very cloudy, though this may be because I didn't use any whirlfloc. The FG was quite high at 1021 or so. This was after about 2.5 weeks in the primary so it had plenty of time to completely ferment. I think the reason for the high finishing gravity was due to the error in my thermometer and the correspondingly high mash temperature (probably around 160 or higher). I picked up a digital unit and ran a comparison. At room temperature,they are both spot on but at boiling the analog thermometer was reading around 204...

Ah well, the hydrometer sample tasted fantastic. Very hoppy I must say. Looking forward to popping one of these in a week or so to sample my first all grain venture.
 
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