Whirlpool questions

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JonClayton

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I plan to brew a NEIPA this weekend and will be doing a whirlpool for the first time. I typically chill with a plate chiller and re-circulation pump, so I am thinking i can whirlpool as the wort chills and then turn off the cold water supply when I reach 170ish to allow the whirlpool to continue without quickly lowering temp.

My recipe provides the following detailed whirlpool schedule, should I add the 40 min additions right at flame out (wort temp 212ish) or should I wait until I have reached a bit lower temp to start the hop addition? If I input into beer smith I am adding the 40 min whirlpool hops at 212, my IBUs are 20 points higher than the recipe calls for. If I go with 175 degrees for the all of the whirlpool additions IBU's are much closer to recipe. Does having hops in a bag rather than free floating affect utlization in whirlpool?

  • 0.33 oz. (9 g) Citra, 12.5% a.a. @ flameout, start of whirlpool (40 min)
  • 0.33 oz. (9 g) El Dorado, 15.7% a.a. @ flameout, start of whirlpool (40 min)
  • 0.33 oz. (9 g) Mosaic, 13.1% a.a. @ flameout, start of whirlpool (40 min)
  • 0.66 oz. (19 g) Citra, 12.5% a.a. @ 10 min into whirlpool (30 min)
  • 0.66 oz. (19 g) El Dorado, 15.7% a.a. @ 10 min into whirlpool (30 min)
  • 0.66 oz. (19 g) Mosaic, 13.1% a.a. @ 10 min into whirlpool (30 min)
  • 1 oz. (28 g) Citra, 12.5% a.a. @ end of whirlpool (rest 20 min)
  • 1 oz. (28 g) El Dorado, 15.7% a.a. @ end of whirlpool (rest 20 min)
  • 1 oz. (28 g) Mosaic, 13.1% a.a. @ end of whirlpool (rest 20 min)
 

day_trippr

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Does having hops in a bag rather than free floating affect utlization in whirlpool?

I believe it does, just as I believe using a spider reduces utilization versus going "commando", sans bags and spiders.

As to your recipe, if that is the total hop bill I'd be inclined to do the first addition at flame out, then bring the temperature down at the end of the first 10 minutes to 170°F and do the rest of the additions at that temperature. fwiw, for NEIPAs I usually do an "IBU addition" at the beginning of the boil using something like Chinook then do all my post-boil additions at 170°F...

Cheers!
 
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JonClayton

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I believe it does, just as I believe using a spider reduces utilization versus going "commando", sans bags and spiders.

As to your recipe, if that is the total hop bill I'd be inclined to do the first addition at flame out, then bring the temperature down at the end of the first 10 minutes to 170°F and do the rest of the additions at that temperature. fwiw, for NEIPAs I usually do an "IBU addition" at the beginning of the boil using something like Chinook then do all my post-boil additions at 170°F...

Cheers!
There is a small 60 minute bittering addition and a ton of dry hops. I only posted the whirlpool schedule since I am unfamiliar with the process. Thanks for the feedback!
 

wepeeler

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Chill to 170F and then add all the WP hops. You'll pull bitterness from the time the wort is at 212 until you get to under 180. Might only be a few minutes, but you're trying to keep the survivables in suspension and this occurs best from 165-180 or so. 170 seems to be the sweet spot.

I wouldn't go longer than 30 minutes. I've actually only been doing 20min WPs lately.
 

day_trippr

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Hop Stopper V2 is how I get away going otherwise "commando" :)


Cheers!
 

wepeeler

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Hop Stopper V2 is how I get away going otherwise "commando" :)


Cheers!
No issues with hops or debris getting caught under the mesh and scorching? Looks like a PITA to clean.
 
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JonClayton

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I call BS on this schedule. Throw 2 ounces of each variety in, whirlpool for 20 minutes, and call it good. I can't imagine anyone could ever taste the difference.
I tend to agree with you and might be the approach i take for simplicity.
 

day_trippr

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No issues with hops or debris getting caught under the mesh and scorching? Looks like a PITA to clean.

Zero issues with scorching to date, probably because nothing can get trapped tight enough to the kettle bottom to not still be immersed in wort. As for cleaning it's actually been no tougher to clean than my 6"x20" 400 micron spider - which has a lot more surface area to blast out...

Cheers!
 

Deadalus

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You are going to have nasty bits in your plate chiller if you don't use something to contain the hops or prevent them from exiting the BK.

I do the same thing you are suggesting with the plate chiller to lower the temperature but turn the water off about 5-8 degrees higher as there is a lag to the temperature drop.

A couple of bits of information missing. There are different temperatures that can be used to whirlpool. There are I think 3 zones that are about 10 degrees wide or so. The recipe should indicate what is expected. Otherwise, I wouldn't regard it as a particularly accurate to begin with. It's like saying bake the cake for 30 minutes, with no temperature given. What volume is the recipe? I typically brew 6 gallon batches and my plate chiller will have the temperature down in maybe 1-2 minutes? And I'm thinking maybe a little faster. Count out loud from 200 down to 190 and that will tell you have fast it will take to drop 10 degrees. Then when you are 10 degrees to where you want to stop cooling start counting and get ready to turn off the water.

I think your recipe is working with a natural drop in temperature. Sorry I don't know without digging exactly what the temperature range is for the zones. But at the temps just under flameout, you will still be picking up some significant IBUs and driving off the aromatics that I think most people are really looking for. As a note of caution, Beersmith does not calculate the IBUs of your boil hops if they are still present during whirlpooling. So if you don't get the temp down into the 170s quick, you will be getting some additional unexpected IBUs. The program does not carry those hops over in other words to the whirlpooling. With a spider or a bag you can extract any boil hops at flameout. Even further, Beersmith is fixing a temperature for the whirlpool at the input value. If you have a dropping a temperature, the IBU calculation will be off.

Personally, I don't whirlpool in the highest zone where there is still some IBU additions. I also use a hop spider and pull the boil hops out. Alternatively, you can add in a repeat line to Beersmith using the same amount of hops as a whirlpool addition. My first few NEIPAs were overly bitter because I didn't know the boil hops were still adding IBUs too during the whirlpool. Particularly if the alpha acids are high for the hops used. Last, I don't let the temperature drop much. I fire the element to stay within 5 degrees or so. I can set the power percentage on mine but don't get distracted and leave the heat on.

You will want to have a way to quick switch the output hose on the plate chiller from the BK to your fermenter without making a mess as your plate chiller is likely lower than your BK. Since I had a different hose for the fermenter (no quick disconnect on one end) vs the return hose to a vessel ( 2 QDs) I use a QD jumper (two male ends and then just add the fermenter hose to the return hose out of the plate chiller.

Hang the hop bag by the vessel wall and it will receive the recirculation flow. It's potentially a little less when the hops are constrained. My hop spider is open at the top so I make sure to stir the hops. If you were to overly compact the hops, that would definitely affect extraction. Those tea ball things are too small in most cases as an example. The hops need to expand some.
 

wepeeler

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Zero issues with scorching to date, probably because nothing can get trapped tight enough to the kettle bottom to not still be immersed in wort. As for cleaning it's actually been no tougher to clean than my 6"x20" 400 micron spider - which has a lot more surface area to blast out...

Cheers!
I used a spider exactly 1x before throwing it in the trash. Major pain in the you know what to clean. Good to know on the trap. Looks like a very nice piece of equipment!
 

SRJHops

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If it was my recipe I'd add everything around 170 - you should get plenty of IBUs, especially if you also have a small amount in the boil.

I'd also recommend turning off the chiller at 180 and watching the temp drop.... If you wait until 170 it might keep chilling faster than you hope.
 

Group W

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I agree with others here on adding WP hops no higher than 170 df. Only bittering hops in the boil at 60 min, or I like 30 min. BeerSmith WP temp is the “Average temperature” I assume over the duration of the WP steep time. I find this awkward and set the WP temp in my recipes at 125df (the average over 20 minutes starting at 170df and ending at 80df.) Maybe my interpretation is off, but below 170df there are not any IBU to speak of.

For a NEIPA the dry hop addition at high krausen is equally important as I assume you are well aware of.

The hops listed will make a nice NEIPA! Cheers.
 

IslandLizard

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I need to get brave enough to just through the hops in and not worry about a bag
Not brave, it would be foolish.

You need to contain those hops (and other pulp) or it will get inside your plate chiller and cause clogging. Once it's in there, it's ever so hard, if not about impossible to get it out.
I had a major issue with my plate chiller clogging when brewing with a friend on his rig. It took some magic and much time to unclog it and flush all the pulp out. 2 years later I still had flakes coming out. Even after "baking" at 450F for 2-3 hours several times during that 2-year period.

I now use 2 large (9"x22") fine-mesh nylon bags with some glass marbles added to weigh em down. The tops are clipped to the kettle handle. They get lifted to the surface repeatedly, every 3-5 minutes, to (partially) drain. I use a wooden paddle for the lifting and don't lift them too high, just above the surface so the wort doesn't splash.

I just got a (special) hop basket, and have hopes it works better and is at least easier. There's still another mesh filter before the exit port to prevent hop bits going into the pump/plate chiller. Only fine dust will make it through.
 

Chazmatic

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Curious thought swirling through this thread, is there an advantage to the action of the whirlpool over a simple hop stand @ 170F?
 
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JonClayton

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Not brave, it would be foolish.

You need to contain those hops (and other pulp) or it will get inside your plate chiller and cause clogging. Once it's in there, it's ever so hard, if not about impossible to get it out.
I had a major issue with my plate chiller clogging when brewing with a friend on his rig. It took some magic and much time to unclog it and flush all the pulp out. 2 years later I still had flakes coming out. Even after "baking" at 450F for 2-3 hours several times during that 2-year period.

I now use 2 large (9"x22") fine-mesh nylon bags with some glass marbles added to weigh em down. The tops are clipped to the kettle handle. They get lifted to the surface repeatedly, every 3-5 minutes, to (partially) drain. I use a wooden paddle for the lifting and don't lift them too high, just above the surface so the wort doesn't splash.

I just got a (special) hop basket, and have hopes it works better and is at least easier. There's still another mesh filter before the exit port to prevent hop bits going into the pump/plate chiller. Only fine dust will make it throug
This is my process as well. I have a bazooka screen in the kettle just in case the hop bag breaks (has not happened yet) and keep the hops in a nylon paint strainer bag usually attached to a DIY hop spider.
 

Group W

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Curious thought swirling through this thread, is there an advantage to the action of the whirlpool over a simple hop stand @ 170F?
Not much. It really depends on your system. Plate or counter flow chiller with circulation pump vs immersion chiller for most home brewers. Most don’t have a separate WP tank after the boil kettle. Time and temperature control is important as well as hop exposure and containment.
 
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