Extract brewing: Palmer method

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by illingwd, Feb 28, 2018.

  1. illingwd

    illingwd Member

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    Having recently acquired John Palmer's How To Brew, I had a go at his recommended method for extract brewing. I've not seen much about this particular method online, so thought I'd share my experience and see if anyone else has used a similar approach to extract brewing.

    The main difference in Palmer's method is that you make up wort at half volume using half the quantity DME, adding the remaining DME after the boil and then licquoring back to make up the full volume in the fermenter.

    Here's how the brew day went.

    Recipe: Cincinnati Pale Ale from How to Brew (https://www.brewersfriend.com/homebrew/recipe/view/615407/cincinnati-pale-ale)

    Method:
    • 'Wort A': 1.14kg light DME, dissolved in 11.4L of water. As the water heats up, added 225g of caramalt to steep. Turned heat off once temp reached 70C, allowed total of half an hour for steeping of caramalt grains.
    • Boil: normal boil with hop additions as per recipe
    • 'Wort B': added further 1.14g DME at flameout, allowing 15 mins for final hop addition to steep before beginning cooling.
    • Racking to fermenter: added cooled wort to 11-12L of water in fermenter to make up target volume of c20L.
    Thoughts on the method:
    • Biggest advantage is that this method allows a smaller boil volume which is workable on a kitchen stove.
    • According to Palmer, steeping the grains in wort rather than water avoids any astringent flavours.
    • The only complication I encountered was licquoring back by adding the wort to 11L of cold water. Having cooled with an immersion chiller, I didn't take account of how much the cold water would chill down the wort, and ended up with 20L of wort at 12C! Left to warm back up overnight in a sanitised fermenter with airlock before pitching the yeast.
    Overall I thought this was a great, convenient way of producing full 5 gallon batches without the need for a large boil and all that entails.

    Anyone else used this method? I was surprised it doesn't feature more in online sources.
     
  2. Yooper

    Yooper Administrator
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    Yes, that’s pretty standard. Palmer was one of the last ones to recommend that method, actually.
     
  3. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    That’s how I brewed when I started 22 years ago. You’ve got my seal of approval. (That and a dollar will get you a cup of coffee.)
     
  4. soccerdad

    soccerdad Active Member

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    Be sure to circle back and tell us how the beer tasted
     
  5. illingwd

    illingwd Member

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    I surely will. Good to know this is a tried and tested method. Like I say I was surprised this method isn't more often mentioned in how to guides online etc as it seems very practical for beginning brewers.
     
  6. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    As far as I can tell most of the kit instructions were printed by the pallet in 1988 and they haven't ran out of them yet.
     

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