Hot wort aeration and sparging

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spook100
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Hot wort aeration and sparging

Post by spook100 » Fri Mar 26, 2010 1:06 pm

I have been reading John Palmer's "How to Brew" and he goes on quite a bit about avoiding aeration of the hot wort. My question is, when fly sparging, does the spraying/dripping of the sparge water through the air not cause aeration of the sparge water which will in turn cause aeration of the hot wort? Or am I missing soemthing?
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Aleman
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Re: Hot wort aeration and sparging

Post by Aleman » Fri Mar 26, 2010 3:17 pm

I find it amazing that the Americans have not suggested that we brew in a 100% nitrogen atmosphere to avoid oxygen pick up :D

I have encountered HSA in one beer in the last 15 years . . . a pale light beer made from imported malt.

Like Chris says it is probably not worth even thinking about until the day it happens . . . then take precautions to minimise it after that.

FWIW the solubility of oxygen in water (From a very hazy memory) drops from 12mg/l to 1 mg/l when the temperature rises from 8C to 20C . . . . just how soluble is it going to be at 80C at sparge water temp?

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Re: Hot wort aeration and sparging

Post by spook100 » Fri Mar 26, 2010 4:48 pm

Thanks for the advice, it sounds like its nothing to worry about. Purely as a moot point though, he says that hot wort aeration can cause problems at almost every point where oxygen could be introduced to the mash except when he writes about fly sparging. It seems a bit inconsisent unless it is not an issue for some reason pure sparging.
A fine beer may be judged with only one sip, but it's better to be thoroughly sure.

Graham

Re: Hot wort aeration and sparging

Post by Graham » Fri Mar 26, 2010 5:39 pm

If it is an issue at all, it would only be an issue with filtered or pasteurised beers. The yeast in our live beers cleans up oxidised flavours.

Listen to Dr. Charles Bamforth talking about HSA on this podcast here:
http://www.thebrewingnetwork.com/shows/475

Bear in mind that Bamforth is a Brit working in America, so his stuff is biased towards typical filtered / pasteurised American beers. His comments about oxidation in finished beers and storage temperature are not 100% applicable to home brew due to the cleaning effect of yeast. Even so, Bamforth effectively pooh-poohs HSA.

These particular podcasts are rather long, ear-bashing and gung-ho to say the least, and can be tiresome. The discussion with Bamforth starts 15 minutes in. The discussion on HSA is 26 minutes in, and he pooh-poohs HSA at 45 minutes in.

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