Summary of Brewing

 

Both HLTs are heated up overnight to their required temperatures . The water is recirculated from the bottom of each tank to the top a number of times to ensure that there are no layers of uneven temperature .

The grain for the specific recipe is weighed out and tipped into the grist case. Water from HLT 1 is then pumped into the mash tun to pre-heat it. This is then run off into the kettle were it is used for sanitising the vessel . Water is again added to the mash tun until it covers the plates in the mash tun and is at a temperature of 72 oC (the strike temperature)

 

 

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An auger is then turned on and the grain is lifted out of the grist case and is wetted with water from HLT 1 (84-86 oC ) as it falls into the mash tun. Enough water is used to produce a stiff mash at 65oC when all the grain has been added.

 

The mash is then left for 90 minutes and the enzymes in the grain convert the starches present into sugars.

 

The sugary wort is then run out of the mash tun into the kettle . Hot water from HLT 2 ( 78-82 oC ) is used to flush out any sugars held within the grain bed via a sparge arm.

 

Once sufficient wort of the correct gravity ( sugar content ) has been collected, the run off is stopped and the boil is started.

 

Below is the Mash tun showing the sparge arm and wedge wire plates

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Once the wort is boiling any hops required for bittering are added. This is because they must be boiled vigorously for 60 minutes to extract the bitterness into the beer.

If hop flavour is required in the beer, then these hops are added in the last 15 minutes or so of the boil . This is because the flavour compounds are volatile and are easily boiled off.

 

If hop aroma is required then these hops are added in the last 2 minutes of the boil as these are even more volatile than the flavour compounds.

 

With all the hop additions there is a direct relationship with the amount added and their affect on the final beer. That is adding more bittering hops will make the finished beer more bitter etc.

 

The hot wort is then passed through a hop back, where the hops form a filter bed and remove the hops, large particles of protein and other debris. The hot wort then goes through a heat exchanger ( wort chiller ) , were it passes cold water and its temperature is reduced to around 20oC at the outlet.

The cooled wort is then run into a sanitised fermenting vessel , where the yeast is added and the fermentation begins.

 

The house strain of yeast used in the majority of brews is the " Whitbread strain " .

 

Fermentation takes about 3-5 days to complete and then the beer is chilled down to 6oC and left for two days to allow the majority of the yeast and proteins to settle out.

 

The beer is then either racked into casks or into conditioning tanks for bottling

The fermenter base showing the "thimble" for yeast retention during the run off

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