Category Archives: 18 A Blonde Ale

grid blonde v1_3

Starting another run of light colored beers for my imaginary brewery – Grid. This blonde is solid at this point. i do prefer the london fog and imperial juice versions better than the cal ale since they have a bit more body and ester profile.

Recipe Info
Recipe: grid blonde v1_3
Style: Blonde Ale 18A BJCP 2015
Author: Dennis Pike
Date: 12-21-2019

RecipeGuideline MinGuideline Max
OG1.0461.0381.054
FG1.0101.0081.013
Color4.33.06.0
ABV4.73.85.5
IBU28.015.028.0

Brewery Info
Efficiency: 72 %
Attenuation: 78 %

Mash Info
Weight: 16.5 Lbs
Thickness: 1.25 Qt per Lb
Deadspace: 2.0 G
Strikewater: 7.16 G
Volume: 8.48 G
Temp: 32.0 F

Boil Info
Kettle Gravity: 1.040
Predicted Mash Run-off: 5.67 G
Target Starting Boil Volume: 11.0 G
Boil Duration: 60 min
Evaporation Rate: 1.5 G per Hour
Final Boil Volume: 9.5 G

Fermentables

Weight% by WeightNameYieldSRM
15.000 Lb91.0 %Brewer’s Malt, 2-Row, Premium (Great Western)80.02.0
1.000 Lb6.0 %chit malt (BestMälz)78.31.5
0.500 Lb3.0 %Honey Malt (Gambrinus)83.025.0

Hops

WeightNameAAUTimeUseIBUs
0.5 OzColumbus/Tomahawk/Zeus (CTZ)14.060 minsBoil15.0
1.0 OzNugget13.620 minsAroma9.0
1.0 OzCascade4.720 minsAroma3.0

Yeast

AmountName
1.000 unitFlagship Imperial A07

Misc

AmountNameTimeUse
1.000 tabletWhirlfloc Tablet15 minsBoil
1.000 tspYeast Nutrient (Wyeast)10 minsBoil

Water
Predicted Mash Ph: 5.49

CaMgNaClSoBicarbonate
Water7321302430
Mash62321986330
Sparge62321986330
Final9853315510047
Target7500000

Water Profile Name: carrboro
Target Profile Name: standard

Mash Water
Total Water Treated: 28.391 G
Percent RO / Distlled: 0 %
Water Used: 7.500 G

Mash Water Adjustments
Gypsum: 2.0 g
Calcium Chloride: 4.0 g
Lactic Acid: 4.0 ml @ 88.000 %

Sparge Water
Leftover Mash Water Used: Yes
Total Water Treated: 7.500 G
Percent RO / Distlled: 0 %
Water Used: 7.500 G

Sparge Water Adjustments
Gypsum: 2.0 g
Calcium Chloride: 4.0 g

Notes

Ferment 68f for 2 weeks

5/13/21 made a 1L starter of WLP001 w/ canned wort. fermented normally.
5/14/21 normal 3V brewday. no issues. pitched @ 3pm.
5/15/21 steady bubbling
5/17/21 slow steady bubbling. definite blow off. should cut back 0.5 gallons in final gallons to 9G.
5/18/21 ~4 sec
5/19/21 ~5 sec
5/20/21 ~8 sec
5/21/21 ~17 sec
5/22/21 ~13 sec (heater on). took sample. 1.012. tastes awesome.
5/23/21 basically no bubbling
5/24/21 1.010 no bubbling. diacetyl test – cold: clean, warm: clean ūüôā
cold crash to 35F and harvest tomorrow during brewday.
5/25/21. dropped yeast. not a very big pull. only 400mL before came out
5/26/21 racked to keg and put on 30psi
5/27/21 put on @ 14psi @ 38 F
5/30/21 carb is finally about right. low the first couple of days. starting to drop clear
6/6/21 completely clear

really nice beer!

grid blonde v1_3

Continuing to refine my imaginary brewery beers :). No big changes. This beer is to build up Flagship for the APA and IPA.

Recipe Info
Recipe: grid blonde v1_3
Style: Blonde Ale 18A BJCP 2015
Author: 
Date: 12-21-2019

RecipeGuideline MinGuideline Max
OG1.0461.0381.054
FG1.0101.0081.013
Color4.33.06.0
ABV4.73.85.5
IBU28.015.028.0

Brewery Info
Efficiency: 72 %
Attenuation: 78 %

Mash Info
Weight: 16.5 Lbs
Thickness: 1.25 Qt per Lb
Deadspace: 2.0 G
Strikewater: 7.16 G
Volume: 8.48 G
Temp: 32.0 F

Boil Info
Kettle Gravity: 1.040
Predicted Mash Run-off: 5.67 G
Target Starting Boil Volume: 11.0 G
Boil Duration: 60 min
Evaporation Rate: 1.5 G per Hour
Final Boil Volume: 9.5 G

Fermentables

Weight% by WeightNameYieldSRM
15.000 Lb91.0 %Brewer’s Malt, 2-Row, Premium (Great Western)80.02.0
1.000 Lb6.0 %chit malt (BestMälz)78.31.5
0.500 Lb3.0 %Honey Malt (Gambrinus)83.025.0

Hops

WeightNameAAUTimeUseIBUs
0.5 OzColumbus/Tomahawk/Zeus (CTZ)14.060 minsBoil15.0
1.0 OzNugget13.620 minsAroma9.0
1.0 OzCascade4.720 minsAroma3.0

Yeast

AmountName
1.000 unitFlagship Imperial A07

Misc

AmountNameTimeUse
1.000 tabletWhirlfloc Tablet15 minsBoil
1.000 tspYeast Nutrient (Wyeast)10 minsBoil

Water
Predicted Mash Ph: 5.49

CaMgNaClSoBicarbonate
Water7321302430
Mash62321986330
Sparge62321986330
Final9853315510047
Target7500000

Water Profile Name: carrboro
Target Profile Name: standard

Mash Water
Total Water Treated: 28.391 G
Percent RO / Distlled: 0 %
Water Used: 7.500 G

Mash Water Adjustments
Gypsum: 2.0 g
Calcium Chloride: 4.0 g
Lactic Acid: 4.0 ml @ 88.000 %

Sparge Water
Leftover Mash Water Used: Yes
Total Water Treated: 7.500 G
Percent RO / Distlled: 0 %
Water Used: 7.500 G

Sparge Water Adjustments
Gypsum: 2.0 g
Calcium Chloride: 4.0 g

Notes

Ferment 68f for 2 weeks

1/15/20 Brew Day
No starter
Normal 3V Brewday with no issues
No ice needed…tap water is 62F
pitched @ 2pm
10pm slow steady bubbling
1/16/20 steady bubbling
1/17/20 “
1/18/20 ~8 sec
1/19/20 no bubbline
1/20/20 ~26 sec
1/21/20 ~30 sec
1/23/20 > 60 sec
1/31/20 cold crash to 35F
2/1/20 harvested 600mL of yeast. mixed and split across two pitches.
2/3/20 racked to keg. FG 1.012. fairly clear. tastes really good. promising!
2/4/20 turned down to 14psi and put on draft
2/5/20 carb already pretty good. a little low. really nice beer. clarity not great so will track to see how long it takes to drop clear
2/8/20 still hazy
2/14/20 crystal clear

2/19/20 comparison vs thousand smiles golden ale from foothills

aroma – mine: malty sweet w/ bready notes, faint dark honey notes. low citrus and herbal hop notes. low mineral note? clean. no off aromas
foothills: low generic malt aroma. med-low citrus hop aroma. clean.
delta: mine is a bit more malt leaning. foothills has a bit more hop aroma.

appearance – mine: gold. excellent clarity. 1/2″ white head w/ excellent retention
foothills: straw. excellent clarity. 1/2″ white head with excellent retention.
delta: mine is a bit darker

flavor – mine: generic malt sweetness w/ low toasty and dark honey notes. low herbal and grapefruit hop flavor. low bitterness. clean. no off flavors. balanced. finishes dry but not astringent.
foothills: very low malt flavor. med-low grapefruit hop flavor. low bitterness. clean. no off flavors. balanced a hair hop leaning. finishes dry.
delta: mine has subtle but noticeable malt flavor. foothills has no real malt flavor. foothills is a little higher hop flavor and mostly citrusy.

mouthfeel – mine: med body. med carb. not warming or creamy
foothills: med-low body. med carb. not warming or creamy
delta: foothills is noticeably thinner

overall – both are nice beers
for my goal which is an easy drinking step up from bud light but some subtle complexity I feel it is spot on. i think this beer is where I want it!!!

GRID Blonde 3V Conical V1_2

Trying to perfect my Blonde recipe. It is modeled after 805 from Firestone Walker but only loosely. I’ve been on a few work trips to Vegas and they have 805 all over the place there at and it is a really really great blonde ale. Perfect for hot weather but really just great anytime. I wanted to try Great Western’s 2-row and so far it has been awesome. I really did not like their High Color malt but their Premium 2-row is fantastic. I’m trying 5-7% chit malt for my beers to promote head and retention which I got from Scott Janish’s IPA book. 805 uses Gambrinus Honey Malt which I have like when I used it in the past. it’s not so much a sweet honey flavor as a deep rich honey flavor and some other munich-esque flavors but pretty restrained. The hops also came from Scott Janish’s book. I’ve been using CTZ for my 60 minute addition. It does seem to give a spicy note to the beer which I really like. I wanted a blend of earthy/dank and citrus for this beer. Very much on the low end but noticeable. Janish found Nugget and Cascade do very well in the whirlpool so I figured I’d give those a go. And for the yeast, I’m trying Imperial’s Flagship which is the Chico strain. I have been super impressed with Imperial’s yeast but wanted to try a different strain for this run of beers.

Recipe Info
Recipe: grid blonde v1_2
Style: Blonde Ale 18A BJCP 2015
Date: 09-20-2019

RecipeGuideline MinGuideline Max
OG1.0491.0381.054
FG1.0111.0081.013
Color5.53.06.0
ABV5.03.85.5
IBU24.015.028.0

Brewery Info
Efficiency: 72 %
Attenuation: 78 %

Mash Info
Weight: 17.5 Lbs
Thickness: 1.25 Qt per Lb
Deadspace: 2.0 G
Strikewater: 7.47 G
Volume: 8.87 G
Temp: 32.0 F

Boil Info
Kettle Gravity: 1.042
Predicted Mash Run-off: 5.9 G
Target Starting Boil Volume: 11.0 G
Boil Duration: 60 min
Evaporation Rate: 1.5 G per Hour
Final Boil Volume: 9.5 G

Fermentables

Weight% by WeightNameYieldSRM
15.000 Lb86.0 %Brewer’s Malt, 2-Row, Premium (Great Western)80.02.0
1.250 Lb7.0 %chit malt (BestMälz)78.31.5
1.250 Lb7.0 %Honey Malt (Gambrinus)83.025.0

Hops

WeightNameAAUTimeUseIBUs
0.35 OzColumbus/Tomahawk/Zeus (CTZ)15.560 minsBoil12.0
1.0 OzNugget13.020 minsAroma8.0
1.0 OzCascade6.220 minsAroma4.0

Yeast

AmountName
1.000 unitFlagship Imperial A07

Misc

AmountNameTimeUse
1.000 tabletWhirlfloc Tablet15 minsBoil
1.000 tspYeast Nutrient (Wyeast)10 minsBoil

Water
Predicted Mash Ph: 5.46

CaMgNaClSoBicarbonate
Water7321302430
Mash62321986330
Sparge62321986330
Final9853315510047
Target7500000


Mash Water
Total Water Treated: 28.391 G
Percent RO / Distlled: 0 %
Water Used: 7.500 G

Mash Water Adjustments
Gypsum: 2.0 g
Calcium Chloride: 4.0 g
Lactic Acid: 4.0 ml @ 88.000 %

Sparge Water
Leftover Mash Water Used: Yes
Total Water Treated: 7.500 G
Percent RO / Distlled: 0 %
Water Used: 7.500 G

Sparge Water Adjustments
Gypsum: 2.0 g
Calcium Chloride: 4.0 g

Notes

Ferment 68f for 2 weeks

Regular 3 Vessel Brewday. No issues.
For whirlpool I killed the boil and i already had cooling setup in place. I cooled to 205F, put in hops and whirlpooled for 20 mins before cooling. It fell to 179F by the end of the 20 mins.
I pitched most of the 400mL of yeast I collected from the APA
The wort tasted great. seemed a bit bitter maybe?
11/1/19 pitched @ 2pm
@8pm steady bubbling
11/2/19 @8am strong steady bubbling
11/3/19 ditto
11/4/19 ~8 sec
11/5/19 ~30 sec
11/15/19 cold crashed to 35F
11/18/19 harvested yeast -> filled up most of a quart mason jar
FG 1.014
tastes really good. nice subtle hop flavor. malt profile is really nice

12/18/19 Tasting notes compared to a Kona Brewing Big Wave Golden Ale (BJCP reference Blonde Ale)

Aroma- Mine: sweet. low bready. low citrus/grapefruit, low earthy, no off aromas
Kona:low generic sweet, med-low citrus, no off aromas

Mine has a noticeably strong malt aroma, especially the bready notes. kona has a much stronger hop aroma but to me it is too much for a blonde ale.

Appearance – Mine: deep gold. nice 1/2″ head. excellent retention. crystal clear.
Kona: straw to pale gold. excellent head and retention.

Kona is noticeably lighter in color

Flavor: Mine: Low honey sweet, low toasty, low bready, low citrus, stonefruit (apricot) and earthy.
Kona: sadly showing a bit of age and oxidation. low clean sweet generic malt, med-low citrus/orange, grapefruit

Kona has zero malt flavor and much higher hop flavor. similar levels of bitterness

Mouthfeel – Mine:medium body, no astringency, lingering low breadiness and earthy notes
Kona: similar but lingering citrus

Overall: kona seems out of style. the hop flavor and aroma are more pale ale or even ipa although the bitterness is good. i like my beer but i need to tune down the honeymalt – maybe in half? to bring down the higher than i want for this style bready and rich honey notes as well as bring the color down from a deep gold to a light gold to straw color.

Grid Blonde 3V Conical v1_0

We all dream of opening a brewery. For fun, I’m making a run of brews that I would want as a part of my line-up. I want to experiment across the various ingredients especially different base malts, house yeasts and hop blends. For this run I’m using Imperial House A01 and the last of my left over NHC run ingredients.

Recipe Info
Recipe: grid blonde v1_0
Style: Blonde Ale 18A BJCP 2015
Author: Dennis Pike
Date: 07-06-2019

RecipeGuideline MinGuideline Max
OG1.0471.0381.054
FG1.0101.0081.013
Color3.93.06.0
ABV4.83.85.5
IBU25.015.028.0

Brewery Info
Efficiency: 72 %
Attenuation: 78 %

Mash Info
Weight: 16.55 Lbs
Thickness: 1.25 Qt per Lb
Deadspace: 2.0 G
Strikewater: 7.17 G
Volume: 8.5 G
Temp: 149.0 F

Boil Info
Kettle Gravity: 1.040
Predicted Mash Run-off: 5.68 G
Target Starting Boil Volume: 11.0 G
Boil Duration: 60 min
Evaporation Rate: 1.5 G per Hour
Final Boil Volume: 9.5 G

Fermentables

Weight% by WeightNameYieldSRM
13.000 Lb79.0 %Pilsner (Weyermann)80.01.8
2.750 Lb17.0 %Wheat (DURST MALZ)84.03.6
0.800 Lb5.0 %Munich I (Weyermann)82.27.1

Hops

WeightNameAAUTimeUseIBUs
0.3 OzSimcoe14.160 minsBoil9.0
2.0 OzSimcoe14.115 minsAroma15.0

Yeast

AmountName
0.100 LHouse Imperial A01

Misc

AmountNameTimeUse
1.000 tabletWhirlfloc Tablet15 minsBoil
1.000 tspYeast Nutrient (Wyeast)10 minsBoil

Water
Predicted Mash Ph: 5.40

CaMgNaClSoBicarbonate
Water7321302430
Mash753213018730
Sparge743213018530
Final1004284024940
Target7500000

Water Profile Name: carrboro
Target Profile Name: standard

Mash Water
Total Water Treated: 27.444 G
Percent RO / Distlled: 0 %
Water Used: 7.250 G

Mash Water Adjustments
Gypsum: 8.0 g
Lactic Acid: 6.0 ml @ 88.000 %

Sparge Water
Leftover Mash Water Used: Yes
Total Water Treated: 5.500 G
Percent RO / Distlled: 0 %
Water Used: 5.500 G

Sparge Water Adjustments
Gypsum: 6.0 g

Notes

Ferment at 68f for 2 weeks

Brewday notes:

Normal 3V Conical brewday

Pitched 150mL of thick slurry from last beer. fingers crossed.

7-19-19 @8am slow bubbling ~8 sec
@5pm rippin’
7-20-19 strong steady bubbling
7-21-19 slow steady
7/22/19 ~ 7 sec
7/23/19 ~15 sec
7/24/19 no bubbling
8/2/19 pulled yeast for next beer and took sample
FG 1.010
tastes good. clean. a bit mirky. cold crash for 48 hours
8/4/18 racked to keg

Blonde Ale 3V 1

I took a long break from brewing to totally remake the cold side in my brewery and move to conicals.  For this I build a glycol loop which I thought would take a month or two but ended up taking four :). For the first beer on the new conicals I wanted to do something really simple and light to pick up on any flaws.  Also, I had won a bunch of ingredients this year including a 50+ lb sack of Cargill 2 row and 2 pounds of Loral hops.  Seemed like a good time to do a SMASH of those two and do a Blonde but with Session IPA level hopping of just Loral.
Recipe Info
Recipe: blonde 3v 1
Style: Blonde Ale 18A BJCP 2015
Date: 09-10-2018

Recipe Guideline Min Guideline Max
OG 1.051 1.038 1.054
FG 1.011 1.008 1.013
Color 3.7 3.0 6.0
ABV 5.2 3.8 5.5
IBU 34.0 15.0 28.0

Brewery Info
Efficiency: 72 %
Attenuation: 78 %
Mash Info
Weight: 19.0 Lbs
Thickness: 1.25 Qt per Lb
Deadspace: 2.0 G
Strikewater: 7.94 G
Volume: 9.46 G
Temp: 150.0 F
Boil Info
Kettle Gravity: 1.044
Predicted Mash Run-off: 6.23 G
Target Starting Boil Volume: 11.5 G
Boil Duration: 60 min
Evaporation Rate: 1.5 G per Hour
Final Boil Volume: 10.0 G
Fermentables

Weight % by Weight Name Yield SRM
19.000 Lb 100.0 % Pale Malt – 2 Row (Cargill) 80.0 2.0

Hops

Weight Name AAU Time Use IBUs
0.5 Oz Loral 11.0 60 mins Boil 11.0
1.5 Oz Loral 11.0 10 mins Boil 12.0
2.0 Oz Loral 11.0 15 mins Aroma 11.0
2.0 Oz Loral 11.0 3.0 days Dry Hop 0.0

Yeast

Amount Name
1.000 unit Wyeast 1318 London Ale III

Misc

Amount Name Time Use
0.500 tsp Yeast Nutrient (Wyeast) 10 mins Boil

Water
Predicted Mash Ph: 5.49

Ca Mg Na Cl So Bicarbonate
Water 7 3 21 30 24 30
Mash 61 3 21 30 153 30
Sparge 68 3 21 30 171 30
Final 97 4 32 45 242 45
Target 75 0 0 0 0 0

Target Profile Name: standard
Mash Water
Total Water Treated: 30.284 G
Percent RO / Distlled: 0 %
Water Used: 8.000 G
Mash Water Adjustments
Gypsum: 7.0 g
Lactic Acid: 5.0 ml @ 88.000 %
Sparge Water
Leftover Mash Water Used: Yes
Total Water Treated: 7.000 G
Percent RO / Distlled: 0 %
Water Used: 7.000 G
Sparge Water Adjustments
Gypsum: 7.0 g
Notes
Pitch at 67 and hold for 3 days. Raise 1 degree a day to 73 and hold through 2 weeks.
Collect yeast
Dry hop for 3 days
Cold crash
Drop hops
Rack to keg and carb to 2.5 vol
9/17/18 1.1L 110g DME starter of yeast 1318 London ale III
9/18/18 normal 3V brewery but used new conical for first time.  No issues.
pitched @ 2:45 pm
9/19/18 @ 6am strong bubbling
9/20/18 steady bubbling
9/21/18 strong bubbling
9/22/18 ~7 sec raised to 68F
9/23/18 ~13 sec raised to 69F in morning and 70F in evening
9/27/18 very limited bubbling
10/2/18 plan was to harvest yeast for next beer but I ran off yeast using block and blow and I dumped waiting for yeast to go creamy and next thing I now I’m dropping beer. ¬†likely b/c I had not cold crashed and I dropped a bunch of yeast. ¬†dry hopped
10/5/18 set temp to 35F for cold crash
10/8/18 dropped trubb.  wanted to rack to but immediately clogged dip tube.  purged racking can but checked with brewery friends and said the cold crash for 2 days, dump the trub, then crash for another 2 days, then dump trub as well as racking arm and if that looks clean then they rack to keg otherwise wait 2 more days and repeat until it looks good but rarely more than 4-6 days total.
10/10/18 dropped bottom valve again and lots o trub.  thick.  ran off racking arm valve.  pretty clean so racked to keg @ 3 psi with no issue.  got a full 5 gallons which I was able to gauge by just looking at the condensation on the outside of the keg.  ran off the rest from racking valve and had just under a gallon.  beer seems good.  a hair of rubber in the nose?  we will see.  put in keezer @ 30 psi for 24 hours then dropped to 12 psi and put on draft
10/16/18 tasted good.  very hazy.  not a loral fan.  very floral and boring.
10/21/18 well made beer with no issues. ¬†kinda boring. ¬†Cargill 2 row really has very little flavor. ¬†loral’s description of “super noble” is kinda right. ¬†herbal but also has some berry notes and big floral / rose / geranial notes. ¬†berry could be from the London ale III. ¬†really nice frothy head. ¬†still very hazy even after being on draft for a few weeks. ¬†definitely looks like a hazy IPA. ¬†gypsum character is good. ¬†right where I would want it for a German pils. ¬†verdict -> Cargill 2 row is fine if you want a totally blank canvas. ¬†not good for single malt beer. ¬†loral is not great. ¬†wouldn’t use it again. ¬†London ale III is great for hazy IPA. ¬†I don’t like it otherwise. ¬†its ester character is not to my liking. ¬†too much berry notes.

Blonde Ale eBIAB 1

I just finished building my new brew rig which is a single vessel eBIAB setup so now the moment of truth.  The first brew on the new system.  Here is the new rig:
IMG_3345
I’m basically assuming a bunch of stuff will go wrong so I’ve decided to go small batch with a cheap and simple beer that will show flaws and maybe a style I haven’t brewed before. ¬†Also my wife is tired of malty lagers so maybe something a bit hoppy. ¬†I scanned the style list and realized I’ve never brewed a Blonde Ale. ¬†How is that possible? ¬†Also I have about 2 lbs of various hops in my fridge including a half pound of Cascade and half pound of Centennial. ¬†So, how about a SMASH Blonde Ale? ¬†2 row and Centennial hops. ¬†Why not.
I’ve also coded up a new recipe tool called BrewDesign (Please, try it out!!! ¬†And give me feedback!!!) ¬†so I used that as well. ¬†Here is the output for this brew:

BrewDesign

Recipe Info

Beer Name: blonde ale eBIAB 1
Style: Blonde Ale
Author: hommel homebrew
Date: 3-4-15

Style

Original Gravity: 1.044
Final Gravity: 1.009
Color: 3.1
Alcohol: 4.6 %
Bitterness: 27.5 IBUs

Brewery

Efficiency: 75
Attenuation: 80

Mash

Mash Fermentable Weight: 8.7 Pounds
Mash Thickness: 2 Quarts per Pound
Grain Temp: 72 F
Strike Water Qty: 4.35 Gallons
Mash Volume: 5.05 Gallons
Strike Water Temp: 166 F
Mash Temp: 155 F

Boil

Kettle Gravity (start of boil): 1.033
Starting Boil Volume: 7.375
Boil Duration: 90 Minutes
Evaporation Rate: 1.25 Gallons per Hour
Final Boil Volume: 5.5

Fermentables

Weight (Lbs) % by Weight Name Yield SRM
8.5 97.7 Canada Malting 2-Row 80.0 1.8
.2 2.3 Acidulated Malt 78.7 2.3

Hops

Weight (ozs) Name AAU Time (mins) IBUs / Addition
.5 Centennial Pellets 10.0 60 20.2
.5 Centennial Pellets 10.0 10 7.3
.5 Centennial Pellets 10.0 0 0.0
1 Centennial Pellets 10.0 dry hop 0.0

Yeast and Friends

Amount (Milliters) Name
1 sachet US-05

Misc

Amount Name Time
1 Whirlfloc Tablet 15
1 tsp Yeast Nutrient (Wyeast) 10

Notes

mash salts:
4.5g Gypsum
boil salts:
4g Gypsum
should give mash pH of 5.4
pitch @ 65 and ramp to 68 over 2 days then hold till done (14 days). rack to keg lager for 2 weeks. rack to clean keg and force carb to 2.5 volumes.
Brew Day:
All in all it wasn’t hugely different than brewing on a 3 vessel system. ¬†Obviously the mechanics and chemistry of making beer all grain is the same. ¬†Some observations:
1) wow, the element is really powerful.   admittedly it was smaller volumes of water but still.  My sparge water was up to temp in 15 minutes.  I got it to a boil in the same or less.  So, even with working out kinks rookie style I still cut about 30 minutes off my brew day and I can imagine that I can get it down to about 5 hours from about 6.5 hours.
2) Don’t forget to turn on the element ūüôā ¬†my mash kept dropping in temp and i couldn’t figure out why. ¬†I then realized I had turned off the element when I pulled the bag up to drain but forgot to turn it back on. ¬†Oops ūüôā
3) My wort was VERY hazy. ¬†And I now have the beer on tap and it’s still hazy. ¬†Like hefeweizen hazy. ¬†That said, I brewed another beer since and with my fixes in place that I’ll discuss, I have very nice and clear wort post mash and on down the line.
4) efficiency was crap. ¬†about 65% vs 80% on my old batch sparge setup. ¬†I improved this to 73% on my next brew which I’ll discuss below.
So where did the hazy wort and poor efficiency come from? ¬† I put in two fixes so not sure which it was but… ¬†First off, after I mashed in it seemed to be a really thick mash. ¬†I normally do¬†1.5 QT / LB water to grain ratio but most stuff I read said go thinner for BIAB so I did 2 QT / LB but it wasn’t right. ¬†It was way to thick. ¬†After the fact I realized in my cooler mash tun I have maybe 1/2 gallon of deadspace and all my beers were 5 gallon batches. ¬†My new setup has a basket in it that holds the BIAB bag and there is about 2 gallons of dead space below that. ¬†So for this brew it was 4.35 gallons of mash water but if you remove the 2 gallons it is really 2.35 which is a ratio of 1.08:1. ¬†Yow. ¬†For my next brew, I changed my recipe software to calculate the thickness with the deadspace removed then add the deadspace in to get the strike water quantity.
Also, in my setup I originally used a 1/2″ pipe to return the water to the top of the mash so it was like a garden hose of water coming back in and the mash bed never settled since it was constantly disturbed by the return water. ¬†So, I built a sparge arm to return the mash water gently back to the top. ¬†Here is a picture:
IMG_3346
Needs a bit of work but it got the job done.
Back to what caused the haze and low efficiency. ¬†I think what happened was the mash was so thick that the enzymes were impeded and I didn’t get full conversion so hence the (probably) starch haze and low efficiency. ¬† So my guess is the thinner mash is what fixed it but the nice gentle recirculation likely didn’t hurt the wort clarity
With my next brew, the wort was very clear at the start and end of the boil – maybe better but at least as good as I had with my old 3 vessel setup so doesn’t appear to be a BIAB issue in general. ¬†Just me screwing things up a bit on the first go around ūüôā
3/11/15 @ 1:30ish pitched rehydrated US-05 into at 66F
3/12/15 8 am nice big fluffy kreusen and solid bubbling.  temp raised over 24 hours to 67F and held for whole fermentation.
3/13/15 same as yesterday.  still bubbling strong
3/14/15 similar to yesterday but maybe slowing a bit
3/15/15 still kreusened but clearly slowing down but steady bubbling
3/16/15 kreusen dropped.  hazy but bubbling slowed to ~2 sec
3/17/15 bubbling stopped
3/19/15 dry hopped with 1/2 oz centennial (1st of 2).  yeast seems to have dropped but still hazy
3/21/15 2nd 1/2 oz centennial dry hop
3/24/15 racked to keg
FG 1.012 pH – 4.15 ( a little low but fine)
dropped to 35F in lagering fridge
forced carbed by shaking for 5 mins at 20 psi
3/25/15 put on draft
very hazy but otherwise a really nice beer. ¬†boring but 100% 2 row will do that ūüôā ¬†clean flavor and nice aroma. ¬†very promising if I can get the haze cleared up.