August 2, 2014
With the 2nd annual All Grain Underground Oktoberfest fast approaching, I decided to crank out the Altbier which will give us 6 beers for the fest. Being that I thought I would be brewing alone, I decided on a 10 gallon batch. I have been reading a few articles about Batch Sparging and watched a video about the method by John Palmer. Seemed like it was worth a shot. The recipe deviates a bit from last years. What I started with seemed like more of a typical Alt recipe. One big problem. I left the brew store with half the Pilsner malt I should have bought but was lucky I had a little in stock from a previous brew. With no time to get more, I replaced the balance with Maris Otter. Lesson learned.
Brewers – Charlie, Alan, Dickie
- 8# Pilsner malt
- 4# Maris Otter malt
- 4# Munich malt
- 4# Vienna malt
- 2# Caramunich malt
- 1# Pale Chocolate malt
- 1# Biscuit malt
- 5 ounces German Hallertau 4.1 alpha
- Wyeast 1007 German Ale
- 8:15 cinnamon rolls
- Strike Temp 162˚ F – 7 gallon
- Mash In 9:25 am
- Mash Temp 152˚ F
- 10:50 vorlauf
- 10:55 begin run off 1- added 1 gallon as space opened in cooler. Yield 5.5 gallons wort.
- 11:10 add 5.5 gallon to mash @ 170˚ – stir
- 11:30 vorlauf
- 11:35 begin run off 2. Yield 5 gallons
- 11:45 add 5 gallon to mash @ 170˚
- 11:55 vorlauf
- 12:00 begin run off 3 – yield 5 gallons for total 15.5 gallons wort
- Pre boil gravity – 11.4 Brix = 1.046 – predicted 1.041
- 12:30 achieve boil
- add 5 oz. German Hallertau 4.1 alpha
- 1:00 switched to smaller burner for more controlled, gentle boil
- 6 tablets Irish Moss
- Boil end 1:45. Post boil volume 12.5 gallons
- Cold break.
Original Gravity – 13 Brix = 1.053 – hydrometer reading 1.05 – predicted 1.049
4 pm – pitch yeast
Sample tasted very good. No bitterness detected. No off flavors. Not much after taste that I usually detect. This one could taste a bit “roasted”. Probably due to the excessively hot boil. We could not dial down Rob’s burner so we switched to the smaller burner.
6 pm – gentle bubble
8 am – very strong steady bubble
Room is holding at the high end of the yeast temperature range. Wish I could get it cooler. Will work on it.
Sunday afternoon – Looking at the tank now, I notice that the bottom third is wort and the next third looks as if it is all “foam”. Good thing this was not a 20 gallon batch. Might have had a Roggenbier eruption.
Sat. August 9, 2014 7:30 pm – Racked to secondary tank. Approx. 11 gallons
Loving the color.
Batch Sparge Notes:
Batch sparging seemed to go fairly well. We will see what the results are come Oktoberfest. BeerSmith software said to split the sparge into 3 segments. That would have used about 3.6 gallons water for each. I believe that would not work very well with 24 pounds of grain. Decided to do 2 at about 5 gallons each. The initial mash yielded 5.5 gallons after adding 1 additional gallon as the run off opened space in the cooler.
I bought a refractometer thinking it would help us to be a able to check gravity as the mash, run off, and boil proceeds. Seems to work very well. Do not have to cool a big sample to use the hydrometer.