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Jun 08, 2022 View:

length of time for mashing

At one of the various distilling courses I attended, one of the speakers stressed that you should take no more than 5 hours to cook and cool the mash before pitching the yeast to avoid bacterial contamination. This raises several questions.

1. Does anyone agree with this?

2. How long is your mashing time? What volume mash?

3. How can the large distilleries achieve anywhere near a 5 hour time using 5 to 10 thousand gallon or larger mash tanks?


Reply:

Not sure I understand why you think increasing the volume would make the mashing and or cooling longer. Volume should be irrelevant.


Reply:

The quicker you cool from malting step to pitching yeast the better. The large distilleries have heat exchangers that can crash chill the mash to pitching temperatures in a single pass. They are counter flow tube in tube heat exchangers are are usually very long but folded to save space.


Reply:

..Like Sherman said, larger distilleries use large heat exchangers and with it large refrigeration chillers to get the end result.

..If cap expense for cooling equipment wasn't a serious issue, a two stage cooling plant would take advantage of ambient cooling and reduce KW input of the system, but usually a chiller plus plate/frame, shell/tube or tube/tube is used.

..smaller distilleries try to "make" the refrigeration work by large storage chilled water tanks or other means to give a smeblance of a large cooling plant in action. The trouble here is that it only works in batches and onlty as long as your storage chilled temp doesn't get wiped out to fast. Lately I've seen smaller distilleries finding old bulk milk tanks and using that to make their chilled water or adding to the capacity with a booster chiller to get the job done. Often the refrigeration part of the bulk tank is shot, but it's valuable as storage.


Reply:

The quicker you cool from malting step to pitching yeast the better. The large distilleries have heat exchangers that can crash chill the mash to pitching temperatures in a single pass. They are counter flow tube in tube heat exchangers are are usually very long but folded to save space.


Reply:

Blue Star,

What vendors are you considering for your heat exchanging system (folded counter flow). Just curious, still in planning stages and considering different mash-cooling options and associated pricing.


Reply:

The safest method would be to get the mash cooled and add the yeast as quickly as possible, but it is not the only way.

See http://adiforums.com...=+sour +buffalo

Similar principal to sourdough bread.

It is a little risky just using the wild bacteria but it produces some very nice spirit as Nick Jones can vouch.


Reply:

McMaster-Carr has shell in tube heat exchangers.