Norther Brewer NEIPA Extract Kit Recipe Clarification

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awoodman

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Hello everyone! I'm about to brew a NEIPA extract clone kit that I bought from Northern Brewer called "Swig of Sunbeams" and I'd love some clarification on some of the steps. For anyone who wants to read more into it, the full instructions are here:
https://www.northernbrewer.com/documentation/beerkits/Swig-Of-Sunbeams.pdf

The first few steps of brew day, listed below, basically mention heating water, adding grain, and steeping. This part is a little vague though and I'd like to hear what your suggestions are here - basically, I'd like a little clarification on steps 2 and 3.

ON BREWING DAY
2. Collect and heat 2.5 gallons of water.
- Heat it to what temperature? The next step mentions 170F but it seems like they want to start steeping at a lower temperature than that.

3. Pour crushed grain into supplied mesh bag and tie the open end in a knot. Steep for 20 minutes or until water reaches 170°F. Remove bag and discard.
- Are we continuing to heat the water after we've added grain? With other kits (maybe more beginner ones), I'm used to heating the water to around 155F and holding it at that temp. while I steep, for ~20mins. It seems like it would be hard to control the rate at which the temperature increases.

4. Bring to a boil and add the 3.15 lbs Gold malt syrup, 3.15 lbs Maris Otter malt syrup and 2 lbs Golden Light DME. Remove the kettle from the burner and stir in the extracts.
- This part is straight forward, just wanted to include a following step.


Thank you in advance for your time!
 

RM-MN

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2. The temperature needed for steeping grains is a very wide range as there are no enzymes that need to be activated for conversion. You could put the grains in at 100F and pull them out when the water boils and get about the same flavors/colors as holding them at 155. The reason to keep them at 155 is that some of the steeping grains might be base malts and that 155 temp will convert their starches to sugars. It's good practice to try to hit the range of 148 to `58 every time as if you go to all grain or partial mash brewing you are already comfortable with hitting the right temp.

3. There is a well founded fear of extracting tannins from the grains at temperatures over 170 but that is driven by a pH that is too high. With only the steeping grains in the water there may not be enough ability to lower the pH below 6.0 so by limiting the temperature to less than 170F you avoid that possibility. If you can control the pH to keep it low enough, you can boil the grains without extracting tannins. The kit instructions can't be sure of your water and its ions so the 170 limit is included. Once you pull the grains you continue to heat the water/wort to the boiling point.

4. Liquid extract is difficult to get mixed well and since it contains so much sugars it is way denser than water and wants to go directly to the bottom of the pot where it can easily scorch if heat is applied. Removing it from the heat source until it is well mixed avoids that.
 
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awoodman

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Awesome, thank you for the very informative response!

One more question about these instructions...Do you recommend adding all of the LME at the beginning of the boil for a hoppy beer like this? I've read some things about adding a little at the beginning of the boil and the the majority in the last 10mins or so of the boil.
 
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TwistedGray

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If I may, follow the directions as is the first time, see how it works, and then tweak on the second, third, etc. You definitely should have a base down before you play around with changes, in my opinion.

Re: 1 and 2
Another idea is to heat it up to 170, turn off heat and put a lid on pot, steep grains for 20 minutes, remove, and heat back up. You'll ensure that you do not heat over 170; however, with a lid on the pot you shouldn't lose that much heat in 20 minutes either. Meanwhile, monitor temps and you can kick the burner on at any time.
 

TwistedGray

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@awoodman If you are interested, NB has a special on extract kits right now. I imagine you received their newsletter notice...ends at midnight though, and I'm not sure what time zone that falls under.
 
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awoodman

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Is this the deal where you buy 3 of the 6 they're offering and they're priced at 19.99?
 

flars

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Awesome, thank you for the very informative response!

One more question about these instructions...Do you recommend adding all of the LME at the beginning of the boil for a hoppy beer like this? I've read some things about adding a little at the beginning of the boil and the the majority in the last 10mins or so of the boil.
It is thought that optimum specific gravity for hop oil isomerization is around 1.040. Add DME first to get about the 1.040 then begin adding LME if it is needed to reach 1.040. Add the remaining LME near the end of the boil. Besides optimum hop oil isomerization this technique is called "late extract addition". The LME has been cooked once. Cooking it again will darken it. This is called the Maillard reaction. Keeps the finished beer lighter in color.

After you pour some of the LME add hot wort to the jug. Mixing the LME with the hot wort will make it much easier to pour near the end of the boil.

Edit: Thought I would add this. Use a wooden spoon to mix hot wort with remaining LME.
resized176.jpg
 
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awoodman

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It is my very standard practice now. Occasionally I will add all the extract at the beginning of the boil to change the flavor of a dark brown ale or a stout for a little variation.
Awesome, thanks for the input!
 
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