Back to Shopping at NorthernBrewer.com

Adding Gypsum after Fermentation

I added the gypsum as plain, dry, cold gypsum, directly to the beer, straight in the glass. I stirred gently to suspend/dissolve; I don’t recall the extent to which it went into suspension, or whether it truly dissolved…

I had intentions of actually drinking & enjoying the glass of beer, so dissolving a quantity of gypsum in boiling water, and then adding that to my beer, seemed to be contrary to my intentions. :smiley:

Right. I ask because I tried adding plain gypsum to a glass of IIPA once, and had similar taste results. Don’t recall the amounts, etc., but I seem to recall it being around a 1/2 tsp, which was likely WAY too much, since 1.5 grams per GALLON gives me 223ppm.

Got some great info on this over at Stackexchange. I’m thinking I may try dissolving 1 gram of gypsum (only because thats as small as my scale will go) in a cup of water, and adding 2 tbsp of the water to a pint of this IIPA. Bru’n water leads me to believe we were pretty close to 5.3 mash pH.

Gypsum does two things:

  1. It releases calcium ions into the mash, which combine with phosphates from the grain to create an acid, thus acidifying the mash.

  2. It provides sulphate ions which contribute a flavour. It’s widely reported that sulphates accentuate hop bitterness and give a slight saltiness to the beer.

If you took all your gypsum and added it only to the glass, then you’d miss out on the first point. However, if you can get the mash pH in line using other means (e.g. acidulated malt), then it’s quite reasonable to add salts to the glass or during packaging.

John Palmer advocates this in his book Water. I have tried it - preparing known quantities of various salts and adding them to different beers to observe the effect. It does produce a taste difference, although it takes some finesse to improve the beer this way.

[quote=“Pietro”]Got some great info on this over at Stackexchange. I’m thinking I may try dissolving 1 gram of gypsum (only because thats as small as my scale will go) in a cup of water, and adding 2 tbsp of the water to a pint of this IIPA. Bru’n water leads me to believe we were pretty close to 5.3 mash pH.

Gypsum does two things:

  1. It releases calcium ions into the mash, which combine with phosphates from the grain to create an acid, thus acidifying the mash.

  2. It provides sulphate ions which contribute a flavour. It’s widely reported that sulphates accentuate hop bitterness and give a slight saltiness to the beer.

If you took all your gypsum and added it only to the glass, then you’d miss out on the first point. However, if you can get the mash pH in line using other means (e.g. acidulated malt), then it’s quite reasonable to add salts to the glass or during packaging.

John Palmer advocates this in his book Water. I have tried it - preparing known quantities of various salts and adding them to different beers to observe the effect. It does produce a taste difference, although it takes some finesse to improve the beer this way.[/quote]

That’s what recipe formulation is for. I may try some small things to a finished beer rarely. But after I brew it is what it is after it is packaged. If something needs to be changed that’s for the next batch

I added 1/16 of a gram to a half pint, dissolved in H20, and it was a noticeable improvement (would take the beer to 150ppm sulfate). Going to do a blind triangle tasting with Wife and my brewing partner to see which they prefer.

Martin has clarified that sulfates will do something more like drying out the finish than actually accentuating the hops. Once I started thinking of it like that, it really made sense.

I recently did some experimenting with adding sulfate to a glass of a rather “flabby” BoPils. Dried it right out and definitely increased the drinkability. Although, I didn’t so anything as controlled as what you propose. Simply added some to a glass to see what would happen.

Back to Shopping at NorthernBrewer.com