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Setting Malt Whiskey pH without Sour Mash

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  • Carl Greene
    I am doing an all grain malt whisky (Scotch) as my next project. How do the single malt experts in Scotland set the pH for the batches prior to fermentation?
    Message 1 of 6 , Sep 1, 2011
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      I am doing an all grain malt whisky (Scotch) as my next project. How do the single malt experts in Scotland set the pH for the batches prior to fermentation?

      The bourbon boys in USA add backset to the grain mash mix for consistency and pH. For scotch, are acids added prior to fermentation, or are the yeasts launched without artificial enhancement?
    • gavinflett
      I wouldn t say that I am an expert, but I have done about 50 of these batches using barley, low and behold as perfect as nature is barley just happens to mash
      Message 2 of 6 , Sep 4, 2011
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        I wouldn't say that I am an expert, but I have done about 50 of these batches using barley, low and behold as perfect as nature is barley just happens to mash out at 5.2 or 5.3 all on it's own so you don't too much to worry about in that sense.

        I did start to mess around with backset, mind you it was still using barley so the properties of that grain may differ from corn. But I found that I was unable to get an SG of higher than 1.062 when using 40% backset or more. No matter how much grain I used it just didn't work, maybe it was the level of acidity, but I was unable to surpass 1.062. So keep that in mind when using backset

        --- In Distillers@yahoogroups.com, "Carl Greene" <thegreatcarlini@...> wrote:
        >
        > I am doing an all grain malt whisky (Scotch) as my next project. How do the single malt experts in Scotland set the pH for the batches prior to fermentation?
        >
        > The bourbon boys in USA add backset to the grain mash mix for consistency and pH. For scotch, are acids added prior to fermentation, or are the yeasts launched without artificial enhancement?
        >
      • Adam Fordham
        Reading the book Making Pure Corn Whiskey ...Mr Smiley recommends 4.5 to 5.5 Ph for sour mash. I highly recommend buying this book and I m not alone in
        Message 3 of 6 , Sep 4, 2011
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          Reading the book Making Pure Corn Whiskey ...Mr Smiley recommends 4.5 to 5.5 Ph for sour mash. I highly recommend buying this book and I'm not alone in respect to Ian Smiley.


          Sent from Yahoo! Mail on Android



          From: Carl Greene <thegreatcarlini@...>;
          To: <Distillers@yahoogroups.com>;
          Subject: [Distillers] Setting Malt Whiskey pH without Sour Mash
          Sent: Thu, Sep 1, 2011 5:08:15 PM

          I am doing an all grain malt whisky (Scotch) as my next project. How do the single malt experts in Scotland set the pH for the batches prior to fermentation?

          The bourbon boys in USA add backset to the grain mash mix for consistency and pH. For scotch, are acids added prior to fermentation, or are the yeasts launched without artificial enhancement?




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        • Fredrick Lee
          There s a powder from Five star called 5.2 buffer. I think it s not worth it. Regular barely with appropriate liquor volume and proper temperature resting
          Message 4 of 6 , Sep 4, 2011
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            There's a powder from Five star called 5.2 buffer.  I think it's not worth it.   Regular barely with appropriate liquor volume and proper temperature resting should give you the proper Ph.  Also, backset can drop your ph lower than about 5.p which will interrupt enzyme activity, and reduce the disastastic power of the base malt.   I think bigtime distilleries use backset to reduce their effluent costs. 



            On Sep 4, 2011, at 16:17, Adam Fordham <bluwater2828@...> wrote:

             

            Reading the book Making Pure Corn Whiskey ...Mr Smiley recommends 4.5 to 5.5 Ph for sour mash. I highly recommend buying this book and I'm not alone in respect to Ian Smiley.


            Sent from Yahoo! Mail on Android



            From: Carl Greene <thegreatcarlini@...>;
            To: <Distillers@yahoogroups.com>;
            Subject: [Distillers] Setting Malt Whiskey pH without Sour Mash
            Sent: Thu, Sep 1, 2011 5:08:15 PM

            I am doing an all grain malt whisky (Scotch) as my next project. How do the single malt experts in Scotland set the pH for the batches prior to fermentation?

            The bourbon boys in USA add backset to the grain mash mix for consistency and pH. For scotch, are acids added prior to fermentation, or are the yeasts launched without artificial enhancement?




            ------------------------------------

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            http://www.taet.com.au/distillers.nsf/

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          • tgfoitwoods
            Carl, I m going to throw in with Gavin on this one. I don t use backset with barley mashes for 2 reasons. First, when I use backset in a corn mash, part of my
            Message 5 of 6 , Sep 5, 2011
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              Carl,

              I'm going to throw in with Gavin on this one. I don't use backset with barley mashes for 2 reasons. First, when I use backset in a corn mash, part of my reason is to get that sourmash flavor note, something I don't want in my scotch. Second, from brewing a lot of allgrain barley beers, I've come to have faith in barley's natural ability to do everything correctly.

              In short, barley seems to be smarter than I am, and produces perfect conversions and fermentations without much of my help. I wouldn't be at all surprised of the whisky-master Scots don't adjust mash pH at all, either.

              Just an opinion, but I loves me my barley beers and whiskys.

              Zymurgy Bob, a simple potstiller Making Fine Spirits

              --- In Distillers@yahoogroups.com, "Carl Greene" <thegreatcarlini@...> wrote:
              >
              > I am doing an all grain malt whisky (Scotch) as my next project. How do the single malt experts in Scotland set the pH for the batches prior to fermentation?
              >
              > The bourbon boys in USA add backset to the grain mash mix for consistency and pH. For scotch, are acids added prior to fermentation, or are the yeasts launched without artificial enhancement?
              >
            • Carl Greene
              Thanks folks…. I now see way the ancients and the old time experts started with barley as the grain of choice for fermentation. It works!
              Message 6 of 6 , Sep 5, 2011
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                Thanks folksÂ…. I now see way the ancients and the old time experts started with barley as the grain of choice for fermentation. It works!

                --- In Distillers@yahoogroups.com, "tgfoitwoods" <zymurgybob@...> wrote:
                >
                > Carl,
                >
                > I'm going to throw in with Gavin on this one. I don't use backset with
                > barley mashes for 2 reasons. First, when I use backset in a corn mash,
                > part of my reason is to get that sourmash flavor note, something I don't
                > want in my scotch. Second, from brewing a lot of allgrain barley beers,
                > I've come to have faith in barley's natural ability to do everything
                > correctly.
                >
                > In short, barley seems to be smarter than I am, and produces perfect
                > conversions and fermentations without much of my help. I wouldn't be at
                > all surprised of the whisky-master Scots don't adjust mash pH at all,
                > either.
                >
                > Just an opinion, but I loves me my barley beers and whiskys.
                >
                > Zymurgy Bob, a simple potstiller Making Fine Spirits
                > <http://kelleybarts.com/MFS.html>
                >
                > --- In Distillers@yahoogroups.com, "Carl Greene" <thegreatcarlini@>
                > wrote:
                > >
                > > I am doing an all grain malt whisky (Scotch) as my next project. How
                > do the single malt experts in Scotland set the pH for the batches prior
                > to fermentation?
                > >
                > > The bourbon boys in USA add backset to the grain mash mix for
                > consistency and pH. For scotch, are acids added prior to fermentation,
                > or are the yeasts launched without artificial enhancement?
                > >
                >
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