3 straight dry brews

Discussion in 'Beginners Brewing Forum' started by SabreSteve, Mar 3, 2021.

  1. SabreSteve

    SabreSteve Well-Known Member

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    So I'm on my 3rd straight brew that's come out with a very dry finish which I hadn't experienced in my 2 previous BIAB batches. Three different recipes. I hadn't dechlorinated on the first 2 but then after encountering the dryness I used a carbon filter on the 3rd. I just ordered campden tablets in case. All 3 pitched with US-05 but so were my previous batches. I did have problems on all 3 with the mash temp dipping low , first because I misplaced (really my toddler did...) my lid and then on the following batches because I was dialing in a new kettle. So do I just need to raise my strike temp is there something else I should be doing?
     
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  2. HighVoltageMan!

    HighVoltageMan! Well-Known Member

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    It may be your water. High sulfates in water can dry a beer out, high mineral content in water can bring up the hop bitterness and it can come across as dry. Can you brew with R/O or distilled? With R/O water you can adjust the amount of sulfates and keep them at a reasonable level, below 100ppm.
     
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  3. SabreSteve

    SabreSteve Well-Known Member

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    I could but I just hate the idea of paying for water. I might have to. But I also had 4 good brews with the same water with only carbon filtering and didn't have that issue. Not unless my tap water changes in the winter. I need to get a water quality report I guess
     
  4. hundel

    hundel Member

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    Dry sounds like tannins to me. Especially if your tap water tastes very good. Any chance you mash out and sparge? That can get the grain bed too hot. Alternately, do you stir your mash frequently? Squeeze every last drop out of your bag? Those are all traditionally considered to extract tannins. But without tasting the beer I can’t say whether this is over-attenuation or tannins. I often assume water chemistry or tannins just because so many beer drinkers have become accustomed to very well attenuated styles that this cause of dryness rarely registers as a defect to a lot of people in a lot of styles.
     
  5. Megary

    Megary Well-Known Member

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    I would agree with all of this except the squeezing the bag part. I don't believe you can squeeze tannins out of the grain. My understanding is tannins are a function of too high of a mash pH.
    My guess would be its a water chemistry issue, but hard to know without a water test.

    @SabreSteve - I don't know if this would work, but can you add a bit of CaCl to the finished beer - in miniscule amounts at a time - to see if that changes your perception of the taste? Maybe a bit of Cl will make if feel less dry/more full.
     
  6. Bubba Wade

    Bubba Wade Well-Known Member

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    I have not heard of many problems with a high pH. However, I have heard of a lot of issues with high temperature. Over 170 and tannins will start to be be extracted more readily.
     
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  7. Mark Farrall

    Mark Farrall Well-Known Member

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    #7 Mark Farrall, Mar 3, 2021
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2021
    How long are you mashing? Lower mash temp and 90 minutes is what I use to get a dry beer.
     
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  8. Mark Farrall

    Mark Farrall Well-Known Member

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    Extracting tannins out of grain hulls needs both the right temperature and pH. If it was just temperature then all decoction mashes would be extracting tannins.

    The most common way it happens is with warm sparge water that has a high pH. It's generally hard to do with batch sparging, as that high pH of the sparge water mixes with the lower pH of the mash water and doesn't raise the pH enough to get the tannins out. With fly sparging, however, you can slowly raise the mash water pH, so that at the end of the sparging you run the risk of getting the mixed pH of the sparge and mash water high enough to extract the tannins. That's why it's important to dose your sparge water with acid if you've got high pH and do fly sparging.
     
  9. SabreSteve

    SabreSteve Well-Known Member

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    75 minutes typically
     
  10. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    I can't say I've ever experienced an issue with tannins. It seems more urban legend than serious risk in my experience.
     
  11. HighVoltageMan!

    HighVoltageMan! Well-Known Member

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    Bingo. pH plays a bigger role than temperature, although the combo is worse with high temperatures and high pH. The lower pH will keep the tannins in the husks where they belong. Temperature is usually not a problem if the pH is low. That’s why you can decoction mash (boiling husks) and not have a problem.

    That being said, tannins in beer come of as harsh and bitter.Typically the complaint is about harsh bitterness. I don’t believe many brewers have problems with tannin extraction, it doesn’t seem to be very common.
     
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  12. HighVoltageMan!

    HighVoltageMan! Well-Known Member

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    Hard water can make what normal would be a good beer, not so pleasant. I don’t like the idea of over playing the role that water would make or break a beer, but this one area where it can wreak havoc.
     
  13. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    #13 Trialben, Mar 4, 2021
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2021
    I'm going with mash temp.
    I like the idea of some chloride too if there is a sulphate thing but as the op said some good batches then these dry ones so may not be water related.
     
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  14. Mark Farrall

    Mark Farrall Well-Known Member

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    Have you been getting good attenuation from the yeast? Possibly better than the recipe predicted? That'd be pointing to a decent amount of beta amylase activity, which gives you the drier beer. If it's that, you can try a bit more heat or less time, or both.
     
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  15. SabreSteve

    SabreSteve Well-Known Member

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    I've been above the default average of 77% on all my brews with US-05, including the two that didn't have this dryness. One of those hit 94% and wasn't this dry. Of the the brews affected my two lighter beers were around 87-88% and the porter was at 81%
     
  16. Mark Farrall

    Mark Farrall Well-Known Member

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    They're pretty good numbers. Sounds like you're doing a great job of making fermentable wort. As I said before, try more temperature to make it harder for the beta amylase to work, or give them less time to do their work. You can do both, but it becomes harder to reproduce and you may prefer one over the other.
     
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  17. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Yeah that's some crazy fermentation almost saison like.
    Just Make sure you don't have no Diastaticus hanging around your brew gear man.
     
  18. SabreSteve

    SabreSteve Well-Known Member

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    I've used 2 different fermenters, 2 different bottling buckets, cleaned it all with PBW, bleach solution. Infection was originally my first thought but I think it's got to be the water chemistry or the mash
     
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  19. SabreSteve

    SabreSteve Well-Known Member

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    I upped my mash time by 15 minutes after low efficiency on my first BIAB but that was also the one where I didn't double mill my grains. So I might be ok if I drop it back to an hour. Holding the temperature has been my biggest struggle. I can see the appeal now of those electric all-in-ones but for me right now that's just a dream
     
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  20. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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