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Brewing Instructions

Douglas Amport How To Instructions

Please read me: If you’re unfamiliar with All-Grain brewing we’d highly suggest that you take a look at John Palmer’s How to Brew before continuing. All-Grain isn’t difficult to do (lots of people do it!) but it does require a little more planning and equipment than extract brewing does. We’d also recommend taking a class, specifically our Brewshop 501: All-Grain Brewing Class. We brew a beer in the class so you get to see each step in action and learn about what each step means and why it matters. If you feel you’re ready to dive in - here’s a quick primer on what you’ll need to do. 5 Gallon All-Grain Instructions - 2.5 Gallon All-Grain Instructions - 1 Gallon All-Grain Instructions Items you’ll need for All-Grain Brewing (5 Gallons):
  • Mash Tun with a false bottom and valve/spigot
  • Minimum 5 Gallon Kettle for Sparge Water
  • 7.5 Gallon Boil Kettle (preferably 10 Gallon)
Our 5 Gallon All-Grain recipes call for a pre-boil volume of 6.5 gallons and we arrive at that number for a very specific reason. Water tends to boil off at an average rate of 1 gallon/hour. Most beers require a 60 minute boil, so if you start with 6.5 gallons at the beginning of your boil you should end up with 5.5 gallons at the end of it. It helps to think of brewing in reverse, start with the volume of liquid you want to end up with and go back from there. Let’s use our 5 Gallon Resistor Pale Ale recipe as an example of how we’d get to a pre-boil volume of 6.5 gallons. Most of our All-Grain recipes are going to be around 10 lbs in size (total grain weight) for an average strength beer (i.e. ~5%). Resistor Pale Ale weighs in at 10 lbs:
  • 9 lbs. 2-Row Malt
  • 8 oz. Caramel Malt 20L
  • 8 oz. Cara-Pils
5 Gallon Mash Calculator ImageHow much water will we need to to ensure we get a pre-boil volume of ~6.5 gallons for a 10 lb batch? The quick answer is 8.67 gallons. How did we come up with that number? We used a calculator. We’re partial to the mash calculator run by the fine folks at Brew365.com. It’s easy to use and allows you to change variables on the fly. All you need to do is plug in the correct numbers for your system (Batch Size, Grain Bill, Grain Temperature, Mash Thickness, and Target Mash Temperature).
Grain Weight (Pounds) Mash Water (Gallons) Sparge Water (Gallons) Total Water (Gallons)
10 3.75 4.92 8.67
11 4.13 4.67 8.80
12 4.50 4.43 8.93
13 4.88 4.18 9.06
14 5.25 3.94 9.19
We would suggest inputting the numbers for your recipe and adjusting the variables so that they work for your system. Every brewing setup is different and you’ll need to learn how your system works and adjust your process from there. The Brew365 mash calculator also helpfully computes a strike temperature for you. Our recipes will range from a suggested mash temperature of 148℉ to 156℉ depending on the style. Just enter the Target Mash Temperature and the calculator will tell you what temperature to bring your strike water to. In the case of Resistor Pale Ale we’re looking for a target mash temperature of 152℉ which means our strike temperature should be 164℉ (see image above). If you run into any problems, just call us at (917) 596-7261 or email us at douglas@bitterandesters.com. We want to help you make good beer and feel comfortable with the process. Items you’ll need for All-Grain Brewing (2.5 Gallons) or BIAB (Brew in a Bag):
  • Minimum 5 Gallon Kettle for Hot Water
  • 5 Gallon Boil Kettle (preferably 7.5 gallon or larger)
  • A nylon grain bag (we’d suggest this one)
Our 2.5 Gallon All-Grain recipes call for a pre-boil volume of 3.5 gallons and we arrive at that number for a very specific reason. Water tends to boil off at an average rate of 1 gallon/hour. Most beers require a 60 minute boil, so if you start with 3.5 gallons at the beginning of your boil you should end up with 2.5 gallons at the end of it. It helps to think of brewing in reverse, start with the volume of liquid you want to end up with and go back from there. Let’s use our 2.5 Gallon Resistor Pale Ale recipe (2.5 gallon version is on the second page) as an example of how we’d get to a pre-boil volume of 3.5 gallons. Most of our 2.5 Gallon All-Grain recipes are going to be around 5 lbs in size (total grain weight) for an average strength beer (i.e. ~5%). Resistor Pale Ale weighs in at 5 lbs:
  • 4.5 lbs. 2-Row Malt
  • 4 oz. Caramel Malt 20L
  • 4 oz. Cara-Pils
2.5 Gallon BIAB CalculatorHow much water will we need to to ensure we get a pre-boil volume of ~3.5 gallons for a 5 lb batch? The quick answer is 4.32 gallons. How did we come up with that number? We used a calculator. We’d highly recommend that you use the Brew-in-a-bag method (more info here) where the grains are mashed in with the total volume of water and there is no sparging. We’re partial to this Simple BIAB Calculator that takes a minimal amount of variables (Grain, Hops, Boil Duration, Boil-off rate, Finished Beer Volume, Fermentation trub, Kettle Diameter, Mash Temp, Grain Temp) and gives you a total volume of water and a strike temperature. Here’s a table showing the total water required based on grain weight and a 2 oz. hop addition:
Grain Weight (Pounds) Total Water (Gallons)
5 4.32
5.5 4.39
6 4.45
6.5 4.51
7 4.57
It isn’t required that you use BIAB for a 2.5 gallon recipe, and you can definitely batch or fly sparge (just like you would a 5 gallon recipe) but BIAB requires less equipment (no mash tun needed) and makes for a slightly shorter brewday. We would suggest inputting the numbers for your recipe and adjusting the variables so that they work for your system. Every brewing setup is different and you’ll need to learn how your system works and adjust your process from there. If you run into any problems, just call us at (917) 596-7261 or email us at douglas@bitterandesters.com. We want to help you make good beer and feel comfortable with the process. Items you’ll need for All-Grain Brewing (1 Gallon) or BIAB (Brew in a Bag):
  • Minimum 3 Gallon Kettle for mashing/boiling
  • A nylon grain bag (we’d suggest this one)
Our 1 Gallon All-Grain recipes call for a pre-boil volume of 2 gallons and we arrive at that number for a very specific reason. Water tends to boil off at an average rate of 1 gallon/hour. Most beers require a 60 minute boil, so if you start with 2 gallons at the beginning of your boil you should end up with 1 gallon at the end of it. It helps to think of brewing in reverse, start with the volume of liquid you want to end up with and go back from there. Let’s use our 1 Gallon Resistor Pale Ale recipe (1 gallon version is on the second page) as an example of how we’d get to a pre-boil volume of 2 gallons. Most of our 1 Gallon All-Grain recipes are going to be around 2 to to 2.5 lbs in size (total grain weight) for an average strength beer (i.e. ~5%). Resistor Pale Ale weighs in at 2.25 lbs:
  • 2 lbs. 2-Row Malt
  • 2 oz. Caramel Malt 20L
  • 2 oz. Cara-Pils
1 Gallon BIAB CalculatorHow much water will we need to to ensure we get a pre-boil volume of ~2 gallons for a 2.25 lb batch? The quick answer is 2.44 gallons. How did we come up with that number? We used a calculator. We’d highly recommend that you use the Brew-in-a-bag method (more info here) where the grains are mashed in with the total volume of water and there is no sparging. We’re partial to this Simple BIAB Calculator that takes a minimal amount of variables (Grain, Hops, Boil Duration, Boil-off rate, Finished Beer Volume, Fermentation trub, Kettle Diameter, Mash Temp, Grain Temp) and gives you a total volume of water and a strike temperature. Here’s a table showing the total water required based on grain weight and a 1 oz. hop addition:
Grain Weight (Pounds) Total Water (Gallons)
2 2.41
2.25 2.44
2.5 2.47
2.75 2.51
3 2.53
We would suggest inputting the numbers for your recipe and adjusting the variables so that they work for your system. Every brewing setup is different and you’ll need to learn how your system works and adjust your process from there. If you run into any problems, just call us at (917) 596-7261 or email us at douglas@bitterandesters.com. We want to help you make good beer and feel comfortable with the process.


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