First Mash suggestions

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First Mash suggestions

Postby BKHunter » Fri Dec 22, 2017 10:33 am

Hey All,

First time poster here. I have been researching stills and reading the basics of distilling. Was looking for suggestions for a first time mash recipe. I think I will be going with a 8 gallon still. I would like to keep things as traditional as possible and not add powder enzymes and things of that nature. I like to try something smooth and slightly on the sweeter side that doesn't require aging. Can any of you all recommend a mash recipe you thing I should try out as my first run? Was thinking either a corn or sweet feed but not sure what I am really getting myself into. Thanks for any advise you all can offer.

BK
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Re: First Mash suggestions

Postby greggn » Fri Dec 22, 2017 11:32 am

I highly recommend taking baby steps. Start with a sugar wash and learn how to provide a healthy environment for yeast to do their work. Then learn how to run your still to extract the ethanol. Repeat many, many times before tackling an all-grain recipe.
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Re: First Mash suggestions

Postby fizzix » Fri Dec 22, 2017 5:56 pm

New guy here myself and I also wanted to jump in to a traditional grain when I started. Problem was I knew how a still worked but didn't know how my still worked.
A few whiskeys and Birdwatcher's cleared that up.
Then I tackled a big boy's all grain dream: Honey Bear Bourbon, but only after listing and memorizing the steps.
I was familiar with my still's behavior by then and knew what to expect, and when. I have no regrets and only success to show for it.
That's my 2¢
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Re: First Mash suggestions

Postby rgreen2002 » Sat Dec 23, 2017 5:00 am

Agree with fizzix - Birdwatchers is a great place to start if you have never fermented before. It's a simple recipe that can actually produce a good product. I still make it from time to time and age it for a while to give it a nice taste IMHO. Check the Tried and True section for the recipe and check the calculator for the ingredients.
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Re: First Mash suggestions

Postby zapata » Sat Dec 23, 2017 4:10 pm

If you have a pot still I'd start with uncle jessie's. Much better drinking than a tomatoe and sugar wash to my pallate. First gen for your sacrificial cleaning run, 2nd gen for drinking, 3rd and 4th gens to get to know your still and finally learn why so many love it.
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Re: First Mash suggestions

Postby BKHunter » Wed Dec 27, 2017 5:54 am

Thanks all this is really helpful. Appreciate the feedback!
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Re: First Mash suggestions

Postby Bushman » Wed Dec 27, 2017 6:28 am

I agree with UJJSM as a great place to start but if you feel comfortable with fermenting AG's then we have a lot of good recipes in the Tried and True recipe section. I like Jimo's single malt. It's easy to scale size to fit your fermenter & still size.
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Re: First Mash suggestions

Postby BKHunter » Thu Dec 28, 2017 5:47 am

I have been reading UJJSM recipe and had some questions as it relates to when you do your runs. Can anyone give some description in the flavor when it switches from heads to hearts, and then hearts to tails? Just want to have an idea what flavor profile I am looking for.
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Re: First Mash suggestions

Postby Bushman » Thu Dec 28, 2017 5:51 am

I would suggest you start here:
viewtopic.php?f=15&t=11640
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Re: First Mash suggestions

Postby bilgriss » Thu Dec 28, 2017 5:57 am

BKH - If you have a lot of experience with all grain mashes already, you might be ready to start with an all grain recipe in the tried and true section. Pay close attention to differences between the instructions and what you might have done with previous brewing. Mash temperatures are different. If you haven't done any of this before, start with a sugar wash like Uncle Jesse's or Sweet Feed until you have a good handle on fermentation. You'll get a great product to start. Generally you are on the right track thinking corn and sweetness, but different recipes vary.
Hope that helps.
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Re: First Mash suggestions

Postby BKHunter » Thu Dec 28, 2017 10:33 am

Bushman wrote:I would suggest you start here:
viewtopic.php?f=15&t=11640


Thanks! I have been searching for key words but these suggestions are very helpful.
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Re: First Mash suggestions

Postby zapata » Thu Dec 28, 2017 12:25 pm

BKHunter wrote: Can anyone give some description in the flavor when it switches from heads to hearts, and then hearts to tails? Just want to have an idea what flavor profile I am looking for.

You'll want to do a LOT more reading and take your time deciding, but basically fores are unpleasant and solventy, heads can be pleasantly fruity but are still unpleasant solventy, hearts are all pleasant ranging from slightly fruity, sweet, grainy, and well, all the notes of whiskey (minus Oak flavors like vanilla). Tails are offensive, rough, meaty, cardboard, wet dog, pencil eraser.
Senses other than smell and taste can be used too. Heads tingle or numb the lips gums and tongue, tails burn in the back of the tongue and throat. Heads also irritate eyes while hearts don't. Half fill a shot glass and seal your open eye over it. Fores irritate almost immediately, heads irritate within a few seconds, hearts not at all (or take 6-10 seconds if you like your hearts to have a bit of late heads fruitiness, I often do especially if planning to age).
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Re: First Mash suggestions

Postby jb-texshine » Thu Dec 28, 2017 4:54 pm

Ujssm is a great start.Hard to beat a bag of ground barley and some hot water tor simplicity though.
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Re: First Mash suggestions

Postby The Booze Pipe » Fri Dec 29, 2017 2:02 pm

zapata wrote:If you have a pot still I'd start with uncle jessie's. Much better drinking than a tomatoe and sugar wash to my pallate. First gen for your sacrificial cleaning run, 2nd gen for drinking, 3rd and 4th gens to get to know your still and finally learn why so many love it.


I second this! In fact, I'd say it doesn't matter what kind of still you have, I would start sour mashing some corn and sugar (jesse's simple sour mash in the Tried & True section). It will teach you exactly how your still runs. Also you'll begin to learn on making cuts, as this simple sour mash is rather consistent throughout each generation (except for the change in esters which only improve flavor).
I recommend you plan to make at least six or more generations; its fast, easy, practically takes care of itself.
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Re: First Mash suggestions

Postby FL Brewer » Fri Jan 12, 2018 2:12 pm

I learned doing whiskey, not neutrals..... or course, my first few batches of whiskey were pretty bad 'cause I didn't know how to run my still, how to make cuts... The good news is that you can just throw all your mistakes in the still and redistill once you get better. And then you know what heads taste like. :crazy: Pick a recipe, and make the same one until you like the result, that will let you learn to run the still and make cuts.
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