Adding specialty grains at mash out versus mash in.

Post #1 made 7 years ago
I'm having a go at a small scale experiment today and was wondering if anybody had thoughts on what I can expect in the final results.

Last week I made a German black beer;

Munich 2.9kg
Pilsner 1.65kg
Chocolate 0.2kg
Crystal (dark) 0.1kg
Carafa 1 0.1kg

Perle to 19.6IBU 80 minutes
Hersbrucker to 4.3 Ibu 20 minutes
Hersbrucker to 0.4 IBU 2 minutes

Salt 1 tsp

Final volume post boil = 27 litres

US-05 Ale yeast

Today I am making the exact same recipe, but I will be adding the specialty grains at mash out rather than in the mash.

I have read that doing this can aid clarity, but with this being a dark beer it wont be noticeable. So what other characteristics may change by doing it this way?

EDIT; When I say "specialty grains", I am talking about grains that don't need to be mashed. ie. cara, crystal and roasted type grains.
Last edited by hashie on 11 May 2010, 08:12, edited 9 times in total.
"It's beer Jim, but not as we know it."

Post #4 made 7 years ago
Geez so you should be Gav.. Get with the program...
Do you reckon ten minutes would be enough to disolve the converted sugars? That's the only thing I can see as an issue...
What was the reason behind the hypothesis behind the experiment Gav?
Lloydie :ugeek:
"Eat my sugar, man[/u][/b]

Post #5 made 7 years ago
A couple of reasons to give it a go Lloydie.

Firstly, I have read ( I think it was in Palmer's How to brew, I must try and find it!) that adding the spec. grains at mashout aids in the clarity of the finished beer.

Secondly, I have also read ( anecdotally ) that leaving the spec. grains out until mashout gives the base malt a better environment for all of the converting of sugars to take place. Especially in dark beers, as the dark spec malts lower the ph of the mash to, sometimes, lower than desired ph.

I will see if I can find the article for point 1 and post it up here.
"It's beer Jim, but not as we know it."

Post #7 made 7 years ago
Damn I reckon that cost me a couple of hours searching to find the article again.

That's what happens when you try and recall things from years ago without having them bookmarked!!!
In 1922, Visez, a brewing scientist at Louvain, Belgium, showed that dextrins also, act as protective colloids and diminish colloidal haze. This means that beers with high dextrin levels are much less subject to colloidal haze than beers with low dextrin levels.

Reducing sugars form melanoidins more readily than non-reducing sugars. Crystal malts average 30-50% reducing sugars. Darker malts in general have higher levels of reducing sugars and dextrins than pale malts, even when the pale malts have been fully modified.

The melanoidins formed at 77°C/170°F are more stable than those formed at the lower temperatures of conventional mashing. By adding these specialty malts only in the mash out, the brewer can make his mash more efficient by optimizing saccarification, maximizing the formation of melanoidins and eliminating steeping vessels and or grain bags.
The full text of the article can be read here.
Last edited by hashie on 13 May 2010, 12:09, edited 9 times in total.
"It's beer Jim, but not as we know it."

Post #8 made 7 years ago
Interesting idea there, with some fairly logical arguments to back it up. It would be interesting to see a side by side comparison to see if the effects were noticeable and if so, how noticeable.

I still stick with adding them to the mash, mostly for the sake of simplicity, but also to give more time for extraction from the specialty grains.

I occasionally get an issue with cloudy beer, but that could just as easily be an issue with yeast as with anything else.

Something like an APA with a good dose of crystal would make a good experiment on this, the taste difference should be noticeable if the bittering wasn't too high.


Post #9 made 7 years ago
I have 2 identical beers conditioning at the moment, so I should be able do a taste comparison next week between the to different methods. Only trouble is they are Black beers, so I wont be able to see any difference in clarity.

Will keep you posted
"It's beer Jim, but not as we know it."

Post #10 made 7 years ago
My thought on this albeit a little late is that your mash pH might have been high as the specialty grains help bring the pH lower.

I noticed this past on only signed up a few weeks ago so a day late and a dollar short I suppose.

I check my mash pH on every brew, but its mostly pointless now as I know what my water adjustments are for my water on any given brew.

Post #11 made 7 years ago
It's never to late to reply Joe.

I don't check my ph, I know, I'm not a real brewer unless I check ph, but there you go.

On the 2 brews I did, the first with the spec grains going in with the mash. The first brew hit 1042 while the second, with the spec grains going in at mash out hit 1044. This was with identical grain bills, water and mash schedule.

Most recently I did a Speckled Hen clone with the spec grains going in at mash out. This brew managed 80.35% efficiency. A big improvement on my normal 74-76%.

Is it because of the spec grains going in at mash out? I don't know, but if this trend continues and there are no ill effects to the beer, I will continue to do it.
Last edited by hashie on 04 Jun 2010, 07:02, edited 9 times in total.
"It's beer Jim, but not as we know it."

Post #13 made 7 years ago
I can't see why it wouldn't.

The thing is, that all of the cara or specialty malts don't need to be mashed.
So why not just mash your base malts and then steep your other grains for 20 minutes at mashout?

So far (2 brews) it has worked for me. I'm just waiting for an empty keg so I can get the Speckled Hen clone out of the fermenter. I'll have to start drinking more :)
Last edited by hashie on 04 Jun 2010, 11:04, edited 9 times in total.
"It's beer Jim, but not as we know it."

Post #14 made 7 years ago
I was only asking of you checked pH, not judging. I'd say its a 50/50 split with most I know. No reason for me to check it at this point unless I try a new recipe. I have the strips so I use them. I was able to check them against a digital meter a friend brought to a club meeting and I have to say in the 4-6 pH range they work great.

I'm just curious. I might try it myself on a few batches just to observe the pH. If I remember... Shoot that's 2 things to remember... Not milling the grain together, then remembering to put it in at mash out...

The bad thing is with summer arriving here in the Northern hemisphere it seems we (my family) never make plans, but are always busy. I don't know the next time I'll be able to brew, but it will probably be hot and humid. Thankfully I have a few in feremters now and quite a few cases ready drink.

Post #15 made 7 years ago
Sorry if I made you feel that way Joe. Websites really need a sarcasm emoticon or something.

I was just trying to add some humour, certainly not feeling like I was being judged.

Sorry for any misrepresentation.
"It's beer Jim, but not as we know it."

Post #16 made 7 years ago

I'm sitting here with 2 pints of Schwartzbier, 1 brewed with all the grains going in at mash and the other with the base malts mashed and the specialty malts added at mashout.

The first, most notable thing is that the beer done with the 2nd method has a much better head formation. The head is much tighter and longer lasting.

The beer brewed with the 1st method is best described (when drinking the 2 side by side) as single dimensional. That is, it has it's flavour (very tasty) but that's it.
While the second beer has multi dimensions. It tastes like beer, but then comes the chocolate and the carafa. I can actually taste the different malts, rather than them being an homogeneous flavour. It also has a creamier mouth feel.

So all in all, I'm very happy with the way beer #2 has turned out (not that there is anything wrong with #1). I'll definitely be doing this into the future.

I'll have to keep an eye out on my paler brews to see if there is improved clarity.

"It's beer Jim, but not as we know it."

Post #20 made 7 years ago
Thanks hashie for the above. I like your, "single dimensional," description. I am definitely going to give that a crack next time I brew a schwartz. One of my favourite things about schwartzbier is the multi dimensions you can get. I have not been able to get this in a schwartz for a while now - maybe grain specs have changed. If doing this second method fixes this, I will owe you many a beer.

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Post #22 made 7 years ago
Hey mate,

Have you kept this up? I'm fascinated by your findings. I'm going to be brewing up an RIS this coming week and definitely want to look into this some more before I do.

Post #23 made 7 years ago
Every brew I do that has specialty grains in it, I do this.

I find the beers have a greater flavour range, rather than the flavours being homogeneous they are individual. Hope that makes sense.
"It's beer Jim, but not as we know it."

Post #24 made 7 years ago
Hmmm as someone who lives in Dublin, with our famous Dublin water, why would I want to do this when making a stout? Surely that will stop my mash actually reaching the correct pH which it can reach when I add the dark malts to my pale malt and mash it all together. It would bring back an element of water treatment that my city has already provided me with out of the tap so really I think this idea is of limited usage and isn't something I'll be doing in a hurry after the cracking stout I recently brewed. My blog, If you like what you read post a comment on the blog comments section thanks, BIAB post coming soon.

Post #25 made 7 years ago

What is your specialty grains process now? Has it evolved from you earlier post? Do you steep 10 or 20min.

I did the following yesterday. 90 min mash with my base 2 row, pulled bag, raised to mash out temp(172 F), dropped bag back in and added specialty grains (dextrine, carastan 15L, vienna) to the bag, and steeped about 10-12min, then pulled it all. My sample looks and tastes good, so all is well. But I am curious if you are still doing this. Plus, I like this idea.
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