Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Shoddy Pale Ale (Batch 288)

I am a big fan of the Brülosophy's podcasts. I am endlessly fascinated by the experiments they perform.

One of my favorite concepts from these podcasts are the "Short & Shoddy" series. 

Basically "Short & Shoddy" involves taking whatever brewing shortcuts a brewer can to save time on brew day and/or getting the beer from grain to glass faster.

The idea is to figure out what shortcuts can be made and still produce a high-quality delicious beer.

The most obvious and most-used shortcuts are mash time and boil time.

Ever since I got my Foundry, I've really been thinking about shaving time off the brew day. As I use the system at 120 volts, heating water takes much longer than when I used my propane burner.

Playing around with the mash-times, I've decided that I don't want to cut my mash time very much because I don't want to reduce my brew house efficiency too much.

I have, however used an overnight mash. While, this doesn't technically reduce brew time, it does allow me to be sleeping while the mash takes place.

This Sunday, I decided to try using an overnight mash and 30 minute boil to see if I could get a brew day done in less than 2 hours.

I also decided to use my Lithuanian Farmhouse Yeast to reduce fermentation time.

The recipe I designed was ...

Saturday, I made a yeast starter. I pre-heated my strike water. Right before I went to bed, I mashed my grains in.

My foundry kept my mash temperature set to 152 overnight.

I woke up and gave the mash a little stir right at 4:45 on Sunday morning. I pulled the grain basket out to drain the wort, and set the Foundry to start to get the wort up to boiling.

I let the wort drain for 15 or 20 minutes. I've found that the wort doesn't heat very fast when the grain basket is draining. But, once I get the grain basket out and the top on the "kettle" things go a bit faster.

It was a little under an hour before I was able to start my boil timer. I added in my first wort hops as my primary bittering addition.

I got all my boil additions added as directed by the recipe. While the boil was going, I cleaned as I could to save clean-up time post boil.

After the boil, I got my Hydra wort cooler in. It took about 5 minutes to cool the wort to 80ish, which is cool enough to pitch with the Lithuanian Yeast.

My yeast was pitched and the fermenter down in the basement by 6:25.

I was able to get my clean-up done almost exactly at 6:45 Am ... exactly 2 hours from the time I started Sunday morning.

Fermentation was going crazy by the end of the day. The next day, my basement "fermentation" room smelled pretty hoppy.

I am not driving high-temperature fermentation with this beer. I still think it should be ready to keg by Friday. I expect I'll be drinking by Sunday. 

Grain to glass in 7 days.

I'll let you know how the beer tastes. I am sure it will be great.

I feel like I should be able to get my brew day down even further with an overnight mash and a 30 minute boil. At some point, I may try a combination of my Foundry with a propane burner and see if I can get the brew day down under 1.5 hours.

We'll see how it goes.

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Of course, don't forget to visit this blog often as well!

Go Nuggets!

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