Brew Day Steps
Get everything out organized and ready to roll. This will make the day go better. Equipment, ingredients, recipe, tools.
Brew Day Walk Through
Ingredients: Get out your grains and mill them. Pull your yeast out of the fridge and let it warm to room temperature. Fill your kettle with clean strike water. Get your hops and weigh them out according to your recipe.
Strike Water: The water used to mash your crushed grains in. Go get it hot.
• Collect strike water 3-6 gallons / 11-22 liters more than your intended fermenter volume.
• Heat strike water to 5-20°f above your desired mashing temp. Every MT (mash tun) is different. Take good notes get to know your gear. My BIAB losses 6°f and my 100qt mash tun cooler losses 18°f.
Grist: is the milled grain bill used for the mash.
Doughing In: Add water first then your grist. The hot water activates the enzymes that are naturally in the malted grains. The enzymes turn the starches into sugars. Stir well so none of the grains are in dough balls and everything is loose and in contact with the water.
Mashing: is mixing the strike water and grains together. Hold mash temp for one hour between 149°-156°f / 65°-69°c.
•149°f/65°c mash releases more fermentable sugars. The yeast eats most of the sugars creating more of a crisp dry body.
•156°f/69°c mash releases more unfermentable sugars. The yeast is not able to eat all the sugars which creates more of a malty sweet body.
Vorlauf: Recirculate the wort until it runs clear, free from any grain or debris. This will set the grain bed in false bottom type of mash tuns.
Lautering: Separating the sweet wort from the spent grains. Drain wort from your mash tun to your boil kettle.
Sparging: Rinsing the grains to collect your desired amount of wort.
Mash out 165-170f = 74-77c degrees 10 min
• Use hot water to sparge or mash out but don’t let your grains go over 170°f / 77°c. Under 170 the sugars will dissolve without leaching tannin from the grain husk.
• You want to collect 2-3 gallons / 7-11L more than what you want to ferment due to evaporation during the boil and kettle trub.
• Boil your sweet wort for 60 – 90 minutes or as the recipe suggests. Watch for boil overs in the first few minutes of the boil. If you are experiencing a boil over blow on the top of the boiling wort and it should go down, or use a squirt bottle to spray clean water on top of the boiling wort.
• Add hops as your recipe suggests.
• Place your wort chiller into kettle with 10 minutes left in the boil. This will sanitize it.
• Add Whirlfloc if your into that.
• Cool your wort to your desired fermenting temperature.
• Transfer chilled wort to your sanitized fermenter.
• Take OG (original gravity) hydrometer sample before adding yeast.
Yeast: Your yeast and wort should be within 2°f of each other and at your desired fermenting temperature before you pitch your yeast.
• Put fermenter somewhere that is dark and where the temperature will not fluctuate very much. Watch as the yeast turns your wort into beer.
• It is not necessary to transfer your beer to a secondary. Just give your yeast a couple of weeks to eat the sugar and clean things up.
• Transfer to kegs or bottles and enjoy.
• Go clean something.
• Strike water volume
• Water temp before adding to mash tun.
• Water temp after adding to mash tun.
• Water temp after adding the grains.
• Water temp after mashing for 30 and 60 minutes.
• Wort collected pre boil.
• Post boil volumes.
These numbers will help you figure out evaporation rate and efficiency.
Depending on what type of equipment you are using your water volumes will change. If you are using a false bottom or manifolds you lose water in the dead space below it.
• You need to know how much water you are using and how much wort you are collecting pre boil and post boil.
• Write everything down
• If you take good notes so you can determine why you came up 1 gallon off, or had a low or high Original Gravity.
• Good notes help you dial your brewing process in with your equipment
• Check your Original Gravity and your Final Gravity.
• You will never know if you don’t measure and take notes.Tags: brew day, brew day checklist, brew day steps, brewing equipment