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ZeeBeer

First partial mash attempt

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So I am attempting my first partial Mini-Mash this weekend and have a few questions.

Reading through the MrBeer FAQ wiki it recommends using a 2-1 ratio. I am using 1.5# 2-row pale and 0.5# wheat for my base so this would require 1 gallon of water. It also recommends only 30mins for mashing.
Now this seems like a high water-grain ratio and a short time to mash. Now as this recipe will be using a low amount of grain is the short mash time useful in cutting down on any tannin production and will the high ratio still produce the sugar conversion?

Recipe 3 gallon boil to 2.5 gallon for LBK
1.5# 2-row pale
0.5% wheat
1.0# Extra light briess DME
1.75# Wheat LME
0.25oz (6.5%) Saaz 60min
0.33oz (6.5%) Saaz 10min
Orange slices 20min
Orange zest, lemon grass, saffron 5min
Whitelabs American Hefeweizen liquid yeast

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I would use 1.5 qt per # and some say anywere from 30-60 min is ok, I preffer 60min or more, just to make sure.

Also take 2 quarts or so and heat it to 170*F in a seperate pot to sparge the grains after done. either dunk the grains or I like the place grains in a paint strainer bag in strainer/collender and rinse through the grains.

Boil as normal after that

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I would definitely go the full hour. And agree with 2 qts.

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Ran the full hour with 1.5 ratio and hit 1.052 around 65% efficiency. Not bad for my first attempt. Will have to see how it turns out. Temp kept dropping on me and I had to reheat three times. Need to find better way to keep my temperatures up. I was using a towel to cover my tun but still lost heat.

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Hey ZeeBeer... got a picture of your tun? Just trying to figure out why you're losing your heat...

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If you are mashing in your brewpot and it's small enough, I had great success on my partial mashes by using my oven set to its lowest temp (170) to manage temps. Usually what I would do is pre-heat the oven while heating my strike water, dough-in, and then put it in the oven. I would usually shut the oven off after 15 mins and just keep the tun in there for the full hour. Worked like a charm and I got great efficiency out of it.

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I was using an old pot covered in a towel but I like the oven idea. I was going to get a cooler but ended up not being able to get one this time. I was looking at using a two gallon cooler as most of the recipes for MrBeer size batches will not require much space, but should I go for a larger cooler just in case.

By the way, my LBK is bubbling away nicely although I did have a little leakage out of the spigot. I checked the spigot and it looked ok and I maintain a very sanitized refrigerator where I keep my keg so I am not going to sweat it.

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For a grain bill that small, I think you are actually better off using more water. My first mashes (partial mashes) were done with between 1.25-1.5 gallons of water for a 2 lb. grain bill, and I had good conversion. A bit more water will also make it easier to maintain your temperature, but that can still be tough with that small a volume. Consider too, that the traditional BIAB technique uses ALL the brew water in the mash. As I recall, that is usually over 3 qts. water per pound of grain; and many people report efficiencies in the 80% range doing that. I do agree with at least a 60 minute mash. Most of mine go closer to 75-90 minutes.

Good show on expanding your repertoire! It's always good to have advanced techniques in your tool box, and some beers cannot really be made without them. :cheers:

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Well I bottled up the batch today and I think it turned out really well. I may have overcarbonated it a bit as I was expecting more beer but ended up with 274oz. I was shooting for 2.3 gallons, oh well. It had a strong wheat smell but a nice fruity taste, looking forward to see how it turns out in four to six weeks. I also bottled my barley wine today too. Ended up with 7 liters in the batch due to losses in the trub and transfer to the secondary. Its ok though I filled nine swivel top 750ml bottles and will use them as holiday gifts. It had a great taste to it and at 10.4% ABV should be a knock out at parties.

I should rename both of them though as I found a rattlesnake in my garage this morning when I went to start the bottle process. The joys of living in the southwest.

Well :cheers: to future brews

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I am also wanting to try a batch with all grains and have not "mashed" before. I am also wanting to move up to a bigger system,...maybe a 10 gallon set-up with conical fermenter. Anyone have a good basic recipe,...say for a pale ale I could try for a 5 gallon batch? Thanks...

P.S. I am also growing my own Fuggle Hops! They are really taking off, so I am excited to use them once I get a harvest! :)

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