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Specialty Grains gravity


May 10, 2009
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Me and my brewing companions have during our recent brews noticed a pattern when brewing with specialty grains such as chocolate, black, special B malts etc. Our estimated Pre-Boil Gravity (as calculated by BeerSmith) is in general much higher than our measured value. This has been observed in Strong Ales, Porters, Cascadian Dark Ales, Stouts etc.

Last weekend we brewed two beers at the same time, a Belgian Blonde and a Cascadian Dark Ale. Both had the same mash and sparge (and boil) schedule and everything went as intended. When we measured the pre-boil gravity the Blonde was spot on with it's estimated SG at 1.051 but the CDA was at a SG of 1.047 instead of the estimated value of 1.057.

After reviewing previous brewlogs and recipes the only real conclusion we could find was that maybe BeerSmith estimate the SG potential of specialty grains higher than it really is. All grain info is from the Beersmith website since we only use Weyermann, Thomas Fawcett and Dingemans.

Does anyone else have this problem?