Autumn Seasonal Beer Punkin' Ale

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Reno_eNVy

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Recipe Type
All Grain
Yeast
US-05
Yeast Starter
no
Additional Yeast or Yeast Starter
no
Batch Size (Gallons)
5
Original Gravity
1.065
Final Gravity
1.017
Boiling Time (Minutes)
60
IBU
19.3
Color
12
Primary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp)
21
Secondary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp)
3
Tasting Notes
Just the right amount of residual sweetness to compliment the pumpkin pie spice
EDIT (8/23/14): Adding some information that can answer common questions.
- RICE HULLS! Use about a pound in the mash for a 5 gallon batch.
- A secondary isn't really necessary. Nor is the gelatin. Time is your friend.
- On the topic of time, I'd recommend giving the beer at least a month in primary, but I think two is better. Then, again, give it at the very least a month in bottle/room-temp-keg. Personally I give it about six months from brew day to drinking. It really becomes special around the 6-8 month mark.
- For extract brewers, the best technique for me when I did extract was to put the pumpkin in a muslin bag and steep it before adding anything else. I'd recommend doing it for 20-30 minutes at a higher temperature, maybe even boiling if you want. Then proceed as normal.
- PM brewers, you can either add the pumpkin to the mash as normal or steep it.

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This beer turned out great.

We've done pumpkin ales in the past but never this good. With a F.G. of 1.017 it has the perfect amount of sweetness to compliment the slight biscuit from the victory malt and the pie spices. Much to our delight (and surprise) it tastes awfully similar to Dogfish Head's Punkin' Ale. As expected with pumpkin ales, this was one hazy mother-effer! Gelatin was used in the very short secondary to clear it up before going in the keg.

Punkin' Ale
O.G. 1.065
F.G. 1.017
Efficiency: 70%
Color: 12 SRM
Bitter: 19.3 IBU


Grain bill
10.00 lb Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM) Grain 83.33 %
1.00 lb Caramel/Crystal Malt - 60L (60.0 SRM) Grain 8.33 %
1.00 lb Victory Malt (25.0 SRM) Grain 8.33 %
2 Large cans (29oz) Libby's pumpkin (no spices added) --- Bake at 350*F for 45-60 minutes (longer if you're at high elevation) let cool before adding to mash



Mash (batch sparge)
Single infusion, Medium body, No mash-out
24QT of 163*F water (step temp of 156)



Boil (60 minutes)
1.00 lb Brown Sugar (60 min)
1oz Hallertaur (4.8%) (60 min)
1.5 Tbs McCormicks Pumpkin Pie Spice (5 min)
1oz Hallertaur (4.8%) (5 min)



Yeast
2 Pkgs SafAle American Ale (Chico) (DCL Yeast #US-05)

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Partial Mash and Extract Versions

I've decided to collaborate a couple posts for the ease of anybody looking for PM or extract.

It's really hard to imitate the flavor you get from Victory malt (which has to be mashed.) It provides aromatic/biscuit/nutty/toasted attributes to the beer that you can't get in extract. Your closet bet would be to use Special Roast... though BeerSmith says it needs to be mashed, HBT wiki says it doesn't. But here's the partial mash and an adjusted extract version; only the grain/extract is adjusted. You can keep the hops, pumpkin, sugar and spice additions the same.

Partial Mash
6# Pale LME
2# Pale 2-row
0.63# Crystal 60L
0.63# Victory Malt


Extract
8.25# Pale LME
0.5# Crystal 60L
0.25# Special Roast


For these adjusted recipes I'd recommend using S-04, which is known to have lower attenuation so you can get that fuller body and maltiness you get from mashing at higher temperatures. If you take the S-04 route, try to keep fermentation temperatures low, closer to 60*F so you get less esters and phenols that will cover up the delicious pumpkin pie flavors.
 
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Reno_eNVy

Reno_eNVy

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Well, it's getting close to that time again! I'm sure a lot of people are planning their pumpkin beer for the coming season. If you happen to stumble upon this recipe please give it shot. I have heard from more than a couple people that it is one of the best pumpkin ales they'd ever had.

I'm going to get this beer rolling soon to be ready for October and then probably brew it again in early October to be ready for November/December... it goes fast and is good enough to keep on hand for an entire season ;)

As for an extract recipe, it's really hard to imitate the flavor you get from Victory malt (which has to be mashed.) It provides aromatic/biscuit/nutty/toasted attributes to the beer that you can't get in extract. Your closet bet would be to use Special Roast... though BeerSmith says it needs to be mashed, HBT wiki says it doesn't. But here's the partial mash and an adjusted extract version; only the grain/extract is adjusted. You can keep the hops, pumpkin, sugar and spice additions the same:

Partial Mash
6# Pale LME
2# Pale 2-row
0.63# Crystal 60L
0.63# Victory Malt


Extract
8.25# Pale LME
0.5# Crystal 60L
0.25# Special Roast


For these adjusted recipes I'd recommend using S-04, which is known to have lower attenuation so you can get that fuller body and maltiness you get from mashing at higher temperatures. If you take the S-04 route, try to keep fermentation temperatures low, closer to 60*F so you get less esters and phenols that will cover up the delicious pumpkin pie flavors. That's why I use US-05; it's nice and clean.
 
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Reno_eNVy

Reno_eNVy

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The 2 large cans of libby's pumpkin puree (non-spiced) should be spread out on a baking sheet so it's about 1-1.5" thick. Bake between 250 and 325*F for 30-45 minutes or until the top starts browning slightly and the puree becomes less viscous. Then add to mash for the whole 60 minutes. Don't forget a few handfuls of rice hulls.

Also, be sure to use McCormick's Pumpkin pie spice. That's how I get my best results and the measurement of 1.5 tablespoons is the perfect amount... nothing worse than being disappointed by a beer that is over-spices.

I'll be adding this to the original post to make it easier :D

EDIT: oh, well nevermind. I can't edit the original post....
 
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I was only able to find small cans of pumpkin. How much pumpkin do I need total?


Can you explain this- "20QT of 163*F water (step temp of 154)"

I'm trying to figure out how much water I need to end up with a 5 gal batch.
 
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Reno_eNVy

Reno_eNVy

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I was only able to find small cans of pumpkin. How much pumpkin do I need total?
From what I could find online it looks like large cans are 29oz and small cans are 15oz. So you're going to need ~60oz, thus 4 small cans


Can you explain this- "20QT of 163*F water (step temp of 154)"

I'm trying to figure out how much water I need to end up with a 5 gal batch.
Well that just means you dough-in with 20 quarts of 163*F water, which will balance out to a mash temperature of 154*F. Since the grain bill is 12#, you'll likely end up losing ~1.2 gallons of water due to absorption. Then typically I would batch sparge with 3.5 gallons to get my pre-boil volume of ~7.0-7.5 gallons... yours will likely be different due to different boil-off rates. (oh yeah, I should also note that I do no mash-out)

However, the pumpkin creates more absorption.... I'd say you'd be safe sparging with an extra gallon to counteract that. Sorry for the rough numbers... when I brew this up again I will get exact values to post. Unless someone beats me to it ;)
 

rainingbullets

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Not sure if anyone is still looking at this thread, but I will be attempting this recipe tomorrow...just one thing...

I picked up two cans of the Libby's pumpkin pie mix, but it turns out it's not the "unspiced" kind (or at least it doesn't say that anywhere on the can).

It seems the store I bought it at, and other stores that I've called don't carry the "unspiced" pie mix.

Is it possible to use these two cans anyway, and omit the Mccormick's pumpkin pie spice? (I bought that too)
 
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Reno_eNVy

Reno_eNVy

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Hmmm... well maybe then just add 0.5 Tbsp pumpkin pie spice. Should do you just fine
 

rainingbullets

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Hmmm... well maybe then just add 0.5 Tbsp pumpkin pie spice. Should do you just fine
Ok, I will try that. Especially since the store wont take the cans back (jerks)

Next question: what fermentation temp should I use?

I went to the LHBS yesterday, and picked up Crystal hops at 3.5% AA. Apparently, it is the same thing as Hallertaur.

I also put this recipe into beersmith. Of course I couldn't find how to add brown sugar, or the pumpkin spices. This is probably why the OG estimate I got is 1.058, with a FG of 1.015
 
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Reno_eNVy

Reno_eNVy

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Nah, you can't put the brown sugar, pie spice or pumpkin into beersmith, I just add them to the notes. My OG without the sugar or pumpkin is 1.060 (70% eff) and afterwards it's around 1.070. I got a lower OG the first time because lautering took fooooorever (don't forget the rice hulls... lot of 'em) and I ended up leaving some.

I'd say in order to keep it clean of yeast flavor so the malt and spices can shine through, ferment around 60-64*F.

And yeah, crystal will work just fine. Good Hallertauer substitute.

EDIT: Oops, I lied... you totally can add brown sugar. Potential SG is 1.046 per pound per gallon. I remember now that I didn't add it to beersmith because the difference in SRMs between light and dark brown sugar is pretty big and I already knew the final SRM would be really hard to calculate what with the spices and pumpkin.

And that makes me realize the final SRM is probably more like 16... or whatever number represents "gorgeous, deep orange-copper"
 

rainingbullets

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Nah, you can't put the brown sugar, pie spice or pumpkin into beersmith, I just add them to the notes. My OG without the sugar or pumpkin is 1.060 (70% eff) and afterwards it's around 1.070. I got a lower OG the first time because lautering took fooooorever (don't forget the rice hulls... lot of 'em) and I ended up leaving some.

I'd say in order to keep it clean of yeast flavor so the malt and spices can shine through, ferment around 60-64*F.

And yeah, crystal will work just fine. Good Hallertauer substitute.

EDIT: Oops, I lied... you totally can add brown sugar. Potential SG is 1.046 per pound per gallon. I remember now that I didn't add it to beersmith because the difference in SRMs between light and dark brown sugar is pretty big and I already knew the final SRM would be really hard to calculate what with the spices and pumpkin.

And that makes me realize the final SRM is probably more like 16... or whatever number represents "gorgeous, deep orange-copper"


I didn't see brown sugar anywhere in Beersmith. Is this something that would be manually added? I saw the light and dark brown sugars at the store. I went with the light.

I also noticed this pumpkin pie mix contains "sugar syrup" as one of the ingredients. I'm wondering if I should cut back a little on the 1.0 lb of brown sugar this recipe calls for...
 
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Reno_eNVy

Reno_eNVy

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I don't think I manually added the brown sugar... it was there to begin with I believe. Dark = 50 SRM, Light = 8 SRM. Both 10% max in batch.

And that's weird that your pie mix would come with simple syrup (that's what I'm assuming it is) but I doubt it's a whole lot... probably not even enough to raise the gravity by 0.001. If you feel more comfortable with slightly less than a pound of brown sugar then that's fine.
 

modernlifeisANDY

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If I were to back off on the pale malt by 2 pounds (mainly because my MT can only handle 12 lbs. of grain, and the pumpkin worries me) would that adversely affect the taste at all? Or would I just be losing out on alcohol? I know the real flavor and malt backbone is going to come from the crystal and the victory anyway, but I'm just curious.
 
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Reno_eNVy

Reno_eNVy

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Yeah that pumpkin will definitely take up some room. You'll be fine backing off on two pounds, you'll just end up with an OG of ~1.060 instead of ~1.070. You could try one of two things:

1) Let it be. You'll still end up with a delicious, medium-full bodied beer that is slightly weaker (by <= 1%)

2) Add about a pound of Dememera sugar, or another partially-refined sugar. This will add more flavor than regular sucrose or dextrose would and raise the OG back up.... but will still lighten the body. To alleviate that, just mash slightly higher at 155 or 156*F.
 

Sarrsipius

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I made a slight variation to this recipe yesterday. When I went to the store to get pumpkin i found out there is a national pumpkin shortage and you can't get canned pumpkin anywhere in Indianapolis right now. So I went and bought some pie pumpkins and made the pumkin mixture from scratch. We'll see how it turns out.

I added .5lbs of flaked wheat and an extra .5lbs of pale malt to compensate for slightly lower efficiency.
 
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Reno_eNVy

Reno_eNVy

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Well, good to hear you were able to find pumpkin to use! Curse you, pumpkin shortage!!!

So how did the mash go? I'm sure it was gummy enough with the pumpkin, but now you've gone an added flaked wheat! I'm sure that took a while :D

And you did the recipe the same the rest of the way? Hope it turns out amazing! Be sure to post updates! :mug:
 

modernlifeisANDY

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Reno, I ended up brewing this on Thursday. I backed off on the pale like I had mentioned and managed to find 4 lbs. of canned pumpkin. It didn't add as much as I thought and I probably could have backed off the pale by a pound instead of two, but it turned out great. Smelled delicious, I'll let you know how it goes!
 
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Reno_eNVy

Reno_eNVy

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First of all, awesome!

Second, wow..... how did you manage to find that much pumpkin? And I'm sure that made for a slow friggin' lauter.

EDIT: I also need to give you a gigantic internet high-five for your beer names!!! SWMBO and I read the "Catbird Butt" and couldn't contain the laughter.
 

Sarrsipius

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Well, good to hear you were able to find pumpkin to use! Curse you, pumpkin shortage!!!

So how did the mash go? I'm sure it was gummy enough with the pumpkin, but now you've gone an added flaked wheat! I'm sure that took a while :D

And you did the recipe the same the rest of the way? Hope it turns out amazing! Be sure to post updates! :mug:
I used 1lb of rice hulls which worked great. The mash lauter and sparge were really no slower than usuall. Wort came out fairly clear.

I used an extra half pound of pale malt and 2 pkgs of US-05. I'll post an update closer to Thanksgiving when I taste it.
 

gratefuldisc

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I brewed this 10 days ago, but used a sugar pumpkin from a local farm. I also used S-04 as its been pretty warm still and the guy at the LHBS said it would be more tolerable of the warmer temps. I didn't use rice hulls and had no problems with stuck sparge. I got 1.081 OG and the S-04 took it down to 1.016 at 7 days. Beautiful color and tasty so far. Nice recipe.
 
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Reno_eNVy

Reno_eNVy

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Reno,
So did you use light or dark brown sugar in your recipe?
Based on what BeerSmith is giving me for the grain bill alone I'd say it was light brown sugar. You can use dark if you wish but I don't know what it will do to the color; the gravity potentials for the two types are the same. Personally, I feel visual representation is important and this beer is such a gorgeous deep-orange hue that I wouldn't change it.

I brewed this 10 days ago, but used a sugar pumpkin from a local farm. I also used S-04 as its been pretty warm still and the guy at the LHBS said it would be more tolerable of the warmer temps. I didn't use rice hulls and had no problems with stuck sparge. I got 1.081 OG and the S-04 took it down to 1.016 at 7 days. Beautiful color and tasty so far. Nice recipe.
Glad it's tasty! Looks like you made yourself a rather stronger version. Is that due to higher efficiency or did you just step it up? Either way, let me know if any alcohol bite interferes with the spices. This would be good to make stronger for the colder months.

S-04 seems like a good choice. At warmer temps you're probably getting more phenols but the ones that S-04 throws off should actually work quite well.

Thanks for the good reception, everybody! It's just nice to know that I could compile something others can enjoy! :mug:
 

gratefuldisc

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Glad it's tasty! Looks like you made yourself a rather stronger version. Is that due to higher efficiency or did you just step it up? Either way, let me know if any alcohol bite interferes with the spices. This would be good to make stronger for the colder months.

S-04 seems like a good choice. At warmer temps you're probably getting more phenols but the ones that S-04 throws off should actually work quite well.
It's possible that there are more fermentables in the fresh pumpkin. Beer tools had fresh pumpkin in the ingredient database but it did not add any gravity potential to the grain bill. That said, it is likely mostly due to higher efficiency. I am still dialing in my AG process and I have had higher than expected efficiency in all my previous AG batches.
 
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Reno_eNVy

Reno_eNVy

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Yes! So SWMBO and I are going to brew this on Sunday. I wasn't expecting to be able to do it before we leave for vacation on the 23rd (time and money constraints) but apparently the Beer Gods have shined down their divine awesome upon me.

Now the hunt for Libby's is on...

EDIT: Five stores, no Libby's (except one, but it was pre-spiced.) Luckily I found organic puree at Safeway. A bit more expensive but at least it is in my possession :)
 

modernlifeisANDY

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Yeah, I got mine at Whole Foods after calling around. It wasn't too bad but it still ran me quite a bit.
 

RandalG

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Well that just means you dough-in with 20 quarts of 163*F water, which will balance out to a mash temperature of 154*F. Since the grain bill is 12#, you'll likely end up losing ~1.2 gallons of water due to absorption. Then typically I would batch sparge with 3.5 gallons to get my pre-boil volume of ~7.0-7.5 gallons... yours will likely be different due to different boil-off rates. (oh yeah, I should also note that I do no mash-out)
When I enter the light brown sugar in beersmith it adds an lb to the recipe.Not sure how that will skew my numbers.Also what's the reason for no mash out?
 
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Reno_eNVy

Reno_eNVy

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When I enter the light brown sugar in beersmith it adds an lb to the recipe.Not sure how that will skew my numbers.Also what's the reason for no mash out?
Oh yeah, BeerSmith will mess with your head like that sometimes. It makes the grain bill 13# on the main page but it keeps mash volume the same. For example, a mash thickness of 2.0 qt/lb will still come up with 24qt.

I just don't like to mash-out. Seems like a waste of time to me. I do the first runnings and get that on flame. While that's heating (and, by heating, denaturing mash enzymes) I do the batch sparge which heats my grain bed up enough to denature the enzymes in there.
 
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Reno_eNVy

Reno_eNVy

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Yeah, I got mine at Whole Foods after calling around. It wasn't too bad but it still ran me quite a bit.
Yeah, it's unfortunate. But luckily LHBS is pretty dang cheap so the price will still end up being college student friendly! :D
 

RandalG

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Oh yeah, BeerSmith will mess with your head like that sometimes. It makes the grain bill 13# on the main page but it keeps mash volume the same. For example, a mash thickness of 2.0 qt/lb will still come up with 24qt.
Yeah another thing it says is add 24 qt. of water at 160.9 for 154 step temp for a 12lb. grain bill where you say 20QT of 163*F water (step temp of 154). Is that just because of your system ? What mash thickness do you use?
 
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Reno_eNVy

Reno_eNVy

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Oh that's because it was calculated using a certain starting temperature of my grain. I was able to set it then, but now for the live of me I can't figure out how to change it again. The strike temperature for less mash liquor is going to be higher anyway, considering you're using less of it to heat up the same amount of grain.

But personally, I'm going to step up to 24qts this time around away. I'm using a bigger cooler and need to fill more head-space.... that and the pumpkin absorbs a lot. BeerSmith shows me "24.00qt at 161.5*F (154*F step temp.) Mash thickness of 2.0 qt/lb... this of course is not including the pumpkin.
 

duskb

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Oh yeah, BeerSmith will mess with your head like that sometimes. It makes the grain bill 13# on the main page but it keeps mash volume the same. For example, a mash thickness of 2.0 qt/lb will still come up with 24qt.

I just don't like to mash-out. Seems like a waste of time to me. I do the first runnings and get that on flame. While that's heating (and, by heating, denaturing mash enzymes) I do the batch sparge which heats my grain bed up enough to denature the enzymes in there.
Ok, this is damn near Greek to me and I've been (extract) brewing for 3 years. Can someone translate all that tech talk?

I'd actually like to try the extract version of this but can't make heads or tails out of your discussion.

Also, WTF is a rice hull and where do you get them?
 

RandalG

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Ok, this is damn near Greek to me and I've been (extract) brewing for 3 years. Can someone translate all that tech talk?

I'd actually like to try the extract version of this but can't make heads or tails out of your discussion.

Also, WTF is a rice hull and where do you get them?
The discussion is about all grain brewing so if you are doing extract it really doesn't apply. Beersmith is a brewing software that helps you formulate recipes.If you want to learn more about all grain I would recommend John Palmer's book How to Brew or search this sight.There's a ton of good info around here. Rice hulls are available at any LHBS and are used when mashing to prevent a stuck sparge.

Reno,
I see what you mean now regarding the mash out and I agree. That's what I do too and you're pretty much doing a mash out with your sparge water anyway.
 
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Reno_eNVy

Reno_eNVy

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Reno,
I see what you mean now regarding the mash out and I agree. That's what I do too and you're pretty much doing a mash out with your sparge water anyway.
Indeed!


Ok, this is damn near Greek to me and I've been (extract) brewing for 3 years. Can someone translate all that tech talk?

I'd actually like to try the extract version of this but can't make heads or tails out of your discussion.
Yeah, as RandalG stated, pretty much everything I said in post in question applies to all-grain brewing only. You need not concern yourself over QT/lb ratios, grain bills or mash-outs.

Also, WTF is a rice hull and where do you get them?
They are the hulls (hard, protective shells with zero nutritional value) that surround each rice grain. Most (if not all) grains have hulls. All-grain brewers use them in order to make it easier to separate the sugar-liquid (wort) to be boiled and the spent grain to be thrown away. They are especially important for pumpkin ales. You can find them at most homebrew stores.
 

Mojoe4

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Thanks for sharing the recipe Reno. Going to try it next weekend.
 
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Reno_eNVy

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Awesome, Mojoe!

Actually, draining sparge runnings right now. First runnings are on flame. The house smells amazing!!!
 

modernlifeisANDY

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Tried a hydro sample today. I missed my mash temps by a lot, so the yeast took it down to about 1.012 instead of the sweeter spot I wanted, but I gotta say, that balance of spices is impeccable. Instead of the DFH Punkin' vibe, I get a bit more of the Shipyard Pumpkinhead character, and I think that's from my lower gravity. It's tasty as hell though. Can't wait to get this sucker bottled and ready to go!
 
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