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Beer and Loafing NHC 2004 Las Vegas, NV Brewing Water, Residual Alkalinity, and Mash pH.

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Presentation on theme: "Beer and Loafing NHC 2004 Las Vegas, NV Brewing Water, Residual Alkalinity, and Mash pH."— Presentation transcript:

1 Beer and Loafing NHC 2004 Las Vegas, NV Brewing Water, Residual Alkalinity, and Mash pH

2 The First Rule Know what your local water chemistry is!

3 The Second Rule Know WHY you want to adjust your water!

4 The Third Rule If it’s not broken, Don’t Fix It!

5 Local Water And Beer Beer Styles came from local brewing water Burton Ale came from hard, high carbonate water Guinness Stout came from medium hard, high carbonate water Vienna Lager came from hard, medium carbonate water Oktoberfest came from medium hard, medium carbonate water. Pilsner came from very soft, low carbonate water

6 Hard vs. Soft Water “Hard water” refers to the scale that forms on pipes, and being “hard” for soap to lather. “Hardness” is a function of Calcium, Magnesium, Iron, Mangenese, etc. “Soft” just means that there is low Calcium and Magnesium. Hard and Soft are only half the story, the other half is the Alkalinity.

7 Reading a Water Analysis Table 1 - Water Report for Las Vegas Valley WD (2003) (All values, except pH, in parts per million (ppm) (1 ppm = 1 mg/l) 17 ppm = 1 grain of hardness/gallon (gpg) Moderate Bicarbonate Moderate Hardness High Sulfate Moderate Sodium Moderate Chloride

8 Famous Brewing Waters These Numbers are Annual AVERAGES! The averages are probably not representative of real ratios.

9 Mash pH Ions Calcium (Ca): ppm Important for most brewing biochemical reactions. Magnesium (Mg) ppm An essential nutrient, but usually not deficient. Acts similar to calcium. Bicarbonate/Carbonate 0-50 ppm for pale beers for amber beers for dark beers Balances the natural acidity of the malt.

10 Flavor Ions Sodium (Na) ppm Accentuates the sweetness of the malt. Excess can cause harsh bitterness w/sulfate. Chloride (Cl) ppm Rounds out the maltiness. Sulfate (SO 4 ) ppm Accentuates the hop bitterness, makes it crispier. Excess causes harsh bitterness.

11 Water Adjustment for Extract Brewing Pre-treatment Odors/tastes: Chlorine, Iron, Sulfur, metallic, etc. Carbon Filters, Campden Tablets, Water Softeners, Green Sand Flavor Tweaking Sulfate for hop bitterness Sodium/Chloride for Malt accentuation Fermentation Issues (Rare) Zn, Ca, Mn, Mg = Yeast Nutrition, Beer Haze 30 Years ago, malt extract was for baking Now, mineral levels for mash chemistry fermentability have been done for you.

12 Water Adjustment for Steeping (Na, Cl, SO 4 ) Same as for Extract (Ca, Mg, HCO 3 ) Steeping pH If your water is very high in bicarbonate, you may need calcium. Use a steeping ratio similar to mash 2-4 qts/lb. Ratio can be more dilute with darker malts Astringency is usually due to being too hot.

13 Water Adjustment for All-Grain (Ca, Mg, HCO 3 ) Mash pH Calcium, Magnesium, and Bicarbonate control the Residual Alkalinity. Residual Alkalinity combines with the grain bill to determine the mash pH Mash pH determines fermentability, clarity, flavor, etc. (Na, Cl, SO 4 ) Same as for Extract Brewing

14 Residual Alkalinity Mash pH is the net effect of the hardness, alkalinity, and the grainbill. Residual Alkalinity = alkalinity - (Ca/3.5 + Mg/7) High RA means you should brew dark beers Low RA means you should brew light beers

15 Residual Alkalinity Nomograph Determine your Base Malt Mash pH

16 Raising RA with Bicarbonate Add 140 ppm HCO3

17 Lowering RA with Calcium Add 190 ppm Calcium

18 Neutralizing Alkalinity Neutralize 225 ppm Alkalinity as CaCO 3

19 Neutralizing Alkalinity con’t Alkalinity can also be neutralized by adding acid to the mash. Lactic Acid (88% soln.) = 11.8 mEq/ml Sulfuric Acid (96% soln.) = 35 mEq/ml Phosphoric (86% soln.) = 30 mEq/ml Divide “Alkalinity As” by 50 to get mEq/L 225 mg/L ÷ 50 = 4.5 mEq/L If mash water volume is 4 Gal (15 L), then 15 x 4.5 = 67.5 mEq of acid are needed. Using Lactic acid: 67.5/11.8 = (6) ml of Lactic Acid Read New Brewing Lager Beer pp for more info

20 Acidifying the Sparge Usually Unnecessary! Malts have a lot of buffering power, which lasts until runnings fall below Acidifying the the mash water or sparge to 5.5 or 6 pH can cause the mash pH to be less than 4.5, which inhibits beta amylase and will affect the taste. Batch Sparge and No-sparge techniques can ensure that runnings never fall below 1.016

21 Summary You can adjust your brewing water chemistry if: You know where you are You know where you are going You know how to get there For more info, see How To Brew (Palmer) – Chapter 15 New Brewing Lager Beer (Noonan) – Chapter 3


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