Boil after Mash?

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Boil after Mash?

Postby avoletta » Fri Mar 29, 2013 1:34 am

Hi All,
I have been a home brewer at the last 5 years. But I have no experience in distilling, yet. Just studying.
In the standard process of getting beer, after making the mash, the wort is boiled for one 1 hour.
Not only to obtain the bitterness from the hop but also to coagulate some substances that came from grains husks (trub).
This trub must be removed from the wort after precipitate it. This can prevent many off-flavor in the beer.
Why this process is not indicated in beer for distillation? or it does?
TKS.
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Re: Boil after Mash?

Postby Linny » Fri Mar 29, 2013 5:47 am

I dont worry about boiling that extra hour , since i always thought it was to sterilise the wort. but since i dont store the wort and i ferment it straight away the higher Alcohol that distilling mashes produces stop infections , since were talking about values over 10%. We also dont have to worry about flavour as were not drinking the wort, were only trying to extract flavours .... someone correct me if im wrong LOL as this is how i thought it went
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Re: Boil after Mash?

Postby SBB » Fri Mar 29, 2013 7:22 am

Linny wrote:since were talking about values over 10%.

Dunno a thing about mashes for beer or distilling, but I did think that they normally came in at a lot under ten %
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Re: Boil after Mash?

Postby Brendan » Fri Mar 29, 2013 7:41 am

Avoletta, let's say we're talking about all grain...most of the processes which come from big commercial distilleries are based on efficiency, relating to either time or money saved.

Some people boil the mash, and some don't. There are some in distilling who do the no-chill cube method, so they have to boil. There is theory that suggests that certain enzymes are destroyed in the boil, and they lose some further conversion which continues to take place during fermentation, so that could be one answer as to why not to boil. Some might say this affects the flavour profile, but you would have a hard time comparing the two...

Commercial Whisky distilleries may skip the step just to save time and money, they can crash cool, and they can use the hot water from crash cooling to cook the next mash in. The froth-up/trub created when boiled in the still can be managed by the commercial boys, they heat gently with steam, can add anti-foaming agents, and have agitators built into their stills which can help control the froth up.

The efficiency vs. flavour is also present in fermentation. The big Whisky distilleries as a rule only ferment their wash to between 6-8%...rarely will you ever see a 9 or 10% wash in a commercial setup. Again some suggest this has an effect on flavours and past the 8% mark is producing more off-flavour compounds as the yeast is under slightly more strain (as they are using predominantly beer yeasts). Others suggest that they pick this mark for efficiency, as they can ferment to 6 or 7% in 4 days, where to get to the 10% mark may take more than that time again, so they save money by running it and getting a new batch down (think of %ABV gained, per day).

Maybe they're both valid reasons, but how can you be sure on your own equipment without experimenting and trying? The 'reason' what you ask isn't done in Whisky as a commercial standard could be to save time & money, or it could be science...either way, nobody has so far reported significantly negative results by using a boil.

Hope that helps :handgestures-thumbupleft:
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Re: Boil after Mash?

Postby crow » Fri Mar 29, 2013 3:12 pm

Boiling a mash will deactivate all enzyme activity . with beer thats great as you dont want a beer that is as dry as a lime burners boot , with whiskey it not great. You will end up unconverted unfementable sugars adversely effecting your yeild and also an unwanted sweetness will likely carry over though distillation , mashing out is really only for beer :handgestures-thumbupleft:
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Re: Boil after Mash?

Postby Kravin » Wed May 08, 2013 5:43 pm

I have been thinking about this.

in my current capacity of understanding distilling, I think boiling, if only for 15min after a long conversion rest would be more beneficial to distilling than leaving enzymes or grain in the wort to clean up anything left over. if you had minimal left over, then there's no need to add grain or not boil to remove excessive proteins from the wort.

If you mashed in at 60C and slowly brought that up to 70C over 2 hours, covering the entire saccrification temperature range, I think you would get better efficiency and full conversion and consequently more sugars in the wort.
Alpha and Beta Amylase work at different temperatures (As you probably already know) but work differently on the starch chains. Beta will break them up at random locations producing fermentable maltose, Alpha only works on the ends of the starch, also producing maltose but also more unfermentable sugars.
So by slowly raising the mash across the saccrification range, you're going to get good conversion at each end of the rest, as well as all the grey bits in the middle, which should give you optimum conversion.

the next part is extracting those sugars. this is where I think a mash out would also be beneficial to distilling.
rinsing (sparging) the mash with water @ 78C will liquify the sugars more allowing for better extraction of the sugar from the grain.

Essentially, you're trying to convert starch and extract as much sugar as possible from the grist for the yeast to convert into Alcohol.
the better extraction, the more sugar, the more food for yeast, the higher the ABV, the more bang for buck!

Now, back to the Boil...
For Beer, Boiling the wort lets unwanted gasses, namely di-methyl sulphide which makes your beer taste like cabbage and corn out. but I don't think this would matter too much for distilling and I don't think it would have any impact on the yeast.

But it will help in a couple of other ways;
It will coagulate a heap of proteins giving you some insurance against all that foam spewing up into your still. Also with an added whirfloc tablet (or some other type of kettle fining), it'll coagulate into bigger chunks and fall out of the wort quicker.
secondly, it will sterilise the wort, meaning that the yeast has no competition in it's hydration and growing phases before it starts fermenting.
After all, the yeast is the hero in all this, everything else we're doing is just to make a nice bed and banquet for it.
A healthy yeast makes better ... (whatever it's fermenting).

the big boys (the same as breweries) are a money making business and as such shortcuts (money savers) are taken.
I also assume that translating a mass production distillery to a back yard still, while the theory is the same, the practice isnt.

Maybe it's just my mindset coming from an AG brewer, and I hope It hasn't come across as me being a pretentious twat, but I think we're all in the same boat about getting as much goodness out of the mash > wort > ferment > wash as possible?

or maybe i'm just being a little over the top and the difference between what im suggesting and a simple one step mash and ferment is minimal?

Happy to be shut down, corrected and educated on any of the above.

Cheers,

Kravin

Edit: Schpelling coz eye carnt schpell good n that
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Re: Boil after Mash?

Postby bt1 » Wed May 08, 2013 6:02 pm

Howdy,

when it comes to AG I go back to John Palmer's site.. he's the guru imho.

I've had a re read and see some value in boiling after conversion as kravin has outlined. Max yield is after all what it's about and if we can gain a few pointers from experienced AG beer guru's I for one are happy with that.

Put another way, leaving the enzymes present and active in a wash by not boiling but at the much cooler temp we run yeasts at I don't see enzyme activity continuing to break down sugars, given the temp requirement for conversion.

Palmer mentions no additional benefit of enzyme conversion at these lower fermenting temps for conversion. Happy to here on this or someone point out something I've missed.

bt1
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Re: Boil after Mash?

Postby Linny » Wed May 08, 2013 6:05 pm

coming from distilling to AG ("beer") is a horses ass ,,,, yeah we can make a good product but what ive noticed that its never as good as a AG brewer moving onto distilling ,,, im sure everyone here is scratching to get at you AG brewers :-D
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Re: Boil after Mash?

Postby Sam. » Wed May 08, 2013 9:32 pm

I think another point as to why people would be fermenting on the grain and not boiling is that not everyone has the set up for all grain?

Easier to just mash in cooker then chuck the whole lot into a fermenter, then your not losing a heap of sugar because you can't sparge effectively :think:
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Re: Boil after Mash?

Postby Kravin » Wed May 08, 2013 9:45 pm

sam_and_liv wrote:I think another point as to why people would be fermenting on the grain and not boiling is that not everyone has the set up for all grain?

Easier to just mash in cooker then chuck the whole lot into a fermenter, then your not losing a heap of sugar because you can't sparge effectively :think:


If you're getting good results, then I don't see any reason to change anything. if it 'aint broke, don't fix it.
I'm in no position to be saying what's right or wrong.
I am REALLY keen to get a still though and do the experiment!

BT1 offered for me to go up to his and check it all out in action.
I might make up 40L of AG wort and let him ferment and still it. See if he thinks it makes any difference.
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Re: Boil after Mash?

Postby Sam. » Wed May 08, 2013 9:46 pm

If I had the equipment to do it I would be making it as you described :handgestures-thumbupleft:
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Boil after Mash?

Postby wedwards » Thu May 09, 2013 7:25 am

I've made my scotch by both boiling and not boiling and can't tell the difference in taste which is mostly all I'm concerned about (dont have any sweetness in what i make). Haven't done any calcs on yield though.

I prefer boiling so I can nochill it in some cubes for convenience.

With regard to foaming, I find the lower mash temps help with that, but not enough to stop me getting some anti foam which I haven't tried yet, but other reports here were promising.

If you are fermenting with the grains still in, then I can see the benefits of no boil I guess, but that's not how I do it.
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Re: Boil after Mash?

Postby That Guy » Sun Oct 01, 2017 7:30 pm

I know this is was 4 years ago, but I wanted to share my finding from brew day yesterday.

After searching around a bit, I decided to not boil.
I mashed in 12.5kg of ale malt and sparged to 50 litres at 1.065 SG.
Chilled to 20c with an imersion chiller and pitched rehydrated US04.
Put it in the fermenting fridge and set it to 20c.

I then brewed a Pale Ale, same process but boiled it, of course.

Before I finished the pale ale, there was already visible signs of fermentation in the first no boil batch. Ive never seen a ferment take off so quickly.
This morning the no boil batch was absoluty fermenting like crazy, Ive only ever seen turbo yeast ferment like that.
The yeast krausen has spewed out the airlock and the pale ale is still lagging with no visible signs of fermenting yet.
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Re: Boil after Mash?

Postby bluess57 » Fri Dec 01, 2017 3:45 pm

That Guy wrote:I know this is was 4 years ago, but I wanted to share my finding from brew day yesterday.

After searching around a bit, I decided to not boil.
I mashed in 12.5kg of ale malt and sparged to 50 litres at 1.065 SG.
Chilled to 20c with an imersion chiller and pitched rehydrated US04.
Put it in the fermenting fridge and set it to 20c.

I then brewed a Pale Ale, same process but boiled it, of course.

Before I finished the pale ale, there was already visible signs of fermentation in the first no boil batch. Ive never seen a ferment take off so quickly.
This morning the no boil batch was absoluty fermenting like crazy, Ive only ever seen turbo yeast ferment like that.
The yeast krausen has spewed out the airlock and the pale ale is still lagging with no visible signs of fermenting yet.


Keep in mind that boiling a wort will drive oxygen out of solution. How much in solution dissolved oxygen difference between mash temp and boiling...idk
A boiled wort, once cooled, will need good aeration prior to pitching yeast.
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Re: Boil after Mash?

Postby bluc » Fri Dec 01, 2017 3:49 pm

That Guy wrote:I know this is was 4 years ago, but I wanted to share my finding from brew day yesterday.

After searching around a bit, I decided to not boil.
I mashed in 12.5kg of ale malt and sparged to 50 litres at 1.065 SG.
Chilled to 20c with an imersion chiller and pitched rehydrated US04.
Put it in the fermenting fridge and set it to 20c.

I then brewed a Pale Ale, same process but boiled it, of course.

Before I finished the pale ale, there was already visible signs of fermentation in the first no boil batch. Ive never seen a ferment take off so quickly.
This morning the no boil batch was absoluty fermenting like crazy, Ive only ever seen turbo yeast ferment like that.
The yeast krausen has spewed out the airlock and the pale ale is still lagging with no visible signs of fermenting yet.

I havnt had one ferment yet after sitting overnight but have seen lacto in one I have done. Sounds like you you have a lot of wild yeast. What do you do with waste is it disposed of in imediate area?
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Re: Boil after Mash?

Postby EziTasting » Fri Dec 01, 2017 4:48 pm

Interesting observation!

I’ve just boiled the last batch of my AG whisky, then cooled it in our ACd kitchen (42C outside!) then used a paint mixer to aerate the wort before I pitched yeast. I’ve never had an AG going off bubbling like crazy when fermenting...
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Re: Boil after Mash?

Postby maddogpearse » Sat Dec 02, 2017 11:11 am

bluc wrote:
That Guy wrote:I know this is was 4 years ago, but I wanted to share my finding from brew day yesterday.

After searching around a bit, I decided to not boil.
I mashed in 12.5kg of ale malt and sparged to 50 litres at 1.065 SG.
Chilled to 20c with an imersion chiller and pitched rehydrated US04.
Put it in the fermenting fridge and set it to 20c.

I then brewed a Pale Ale, same process but boiled it, of course.

Before I finished the pale ale, there was already visible signs of fermentation in the first no boil batch. Ive never seen a ferment take off so quickly.
This morning the no boil batch was absoluty fermenting like crazy, Ive only ever seen turbo yeast ferment like that.
The yeast krausen has spewed out the airlock and the pale ale is still lagging with no visible signs of fermenting yet.

I havnt had one ferment yet after sitting overnight but have seen lacto in one I have done. Sounds like you you have a lot of wild yeast. What do you do with waste is it disposed of in imediate area?

How could wild yeast get in if it's been chilled and rehydrated yeast pitched then into the fridge?
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Re: Boil after Mash?

Postby bluc » Sat Dec 02, 2017 11:21 am

Yea doesnt make a lot of sense what I said :think:
I think I must have skimmed and assumed because he said he didnt boil it was a spontaneus ferment. :angry-banghead:
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Re: Boil after Mash?

Postby rumsponge » Sat Dec 02, 2017 6:48 pm

could be all the trub (sediment) thats generated after the boil and that is left in the wash in your no boil wash.
i would think most of it will be proteins - a good source of nitrogen for the yeast. some vitamins are also killed by boiling.
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Re: Boil after Mash?

Postby That Guy » Mon Dec 11, 2017 7:00 pm

It's all run through the still now and there was no infection.
I oxygenate everything before I pitch and treated it exactly like I would beer, but no boil.
Smells good and tastes good, ferment quicker than i expected, so I really cant see a reason why I should boil in the future.

But I guess I will have to do exactly the same recipe and boil it just for research purposes.
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