All Grain Brewing

Mash Tun

All Grain Brewing

So I started all grain last month seeing if I could get a better colour and consistency with my Citra smash and I was pleasantly suprised about how well it went. The beer came out the right colour I made a few mistakes when sparging which made it a lot cloudier than it should be but I have been happy with the results. It does take a lot longer than extract almost double the time but it is not as bad as it sounds so first.

I will show you the mash tun I made from a 5 gallon rubbermaid cooler and so stainless steel fittings I got at DeFalco’s in Orleans and a $1.89 toilet water supply hose.

Mash Tun

Now I didn’t think to do a step by step picture guide on how to make one and I will probably do that at some point in the future.

First we select our recipe I have been working on a recipe for an Irish Red Ale for St. Patricks Day. So this will be what we are using.

Then we heat up 12.56 Qts of water (14.2lt)

I heated this to 152F

While the water was warming up I than measure out my grains mixed them and put them into the mash tun.

3kg of Maris Otter, 1 Pound of Crystal 40L, 115gm of Roasted Barley

Once the water was heater up to temperature you pour it in gently and stir it up to break up any clumps called dough balls.

Now it needs to steep for around 60 minutes and than sparged(rinsed)

take about 2-3 quarts out and pour it back in this is called vorlauf do this 2-3 times to clear up the grain bed and filter out some more of the husks.
now open your valve to 3/4 and fill up your kettle

Now we heat up another 4 gallons of water to just a bit warmer 168F and use that to sparge the mash so basically pour it in gently and let it rest 5-10 minutes after a stir and open up your ball valve again. And bring the wort in the kettle up to your desired amount my kettle only holds around 5 gallon so I leave a little on top otherwise if you have a 10 gallon kettle bring that up to around 7.5 gallons to take into account boil off.

I had an extra kettle handy to heat up the sparge while I mashed out.
The colour is about right for what I was looking for so pretty happy with that.

Once you hit a rolling boil you will want to maintain it for 60 minutes this recipe calls for adding 1 ounce of East Kent Goldings right at the start of the boil this is a bittering addition this early in the boil for aroma you do it mid boil and for hoppy flavouring you do it at the end of dry hop 3-4 days into your fermentation.

set a timer I use BeerSmith 3 or Brewers friend.

Once the boil is done(flame out is the term I believe) than you chill it down as fast as you can(put the lid on to prevent wild yeast from getting into it). The usual home brew methods are an ice bath which is what we will be doing here or a wort chiller (I don’t have one so ice bath it is)

I usually just stick it in the snow but I currently have a bit of a squirrel issue right now and don’t want to have the lid knocked off

Now I start my yeast in a cup of room temp water and sanitize everything.

I use star san as a sanitizer but there are other options out there.

Once the wort is chilled you than pour your wort into a fermentor I use a bucket fermentor and I top it up to 5.5gallons than pitch my yeast. After that stick it in a closet thats around 68F for 2 weeks and let the little buggers do there job.

PS. I ended up sticking it in the snow. Ice bath can take a few hours and I got impatient so -9C cooled it down faster.