Return to main page. Advanced Brewing Guide

Ready to make the step from intermediate to advanced brewing? The following improvements to the techniques outlined in the Intermediate Brewing Guide will be added:


  1. All grain brewing through the use of a three vessel brewing system.
  2. Use of yeast extract as a yeast nutrient.
  3. Use of a aeration stone to oxygenate the wort.

In addition to the equipment listed in the Lee's Brewery Intermediate Brewing Guide, you'll also need the following:

1-Hot water tank/kettle w/spigot 1-Mashing kettle w/spigot 1-Mash screen or EZ-Masher
1-Thermometer for mash kettle 1 - lautering arm 1-Wort aeration kit

Equipment note: The three vessels should be arranged in a tiered configuration that makes use of gravity to move liquids through the vessels. An ideal three vessel set up will use three stainless steel kettles, with a burner dedicated for each kettle. This requires a fairly substantial initial investment. A more inexpensive setup is currently in use at Lee's Brewery. The mash kettle is set on one burner of the stove. Another burner is used to heat a pot of water. As each batch of water reaches temperature, it is poured (carefully) into the hot water tank. Upon completion of the lautering process, the grain is cleaned from the mash kettle. The wort is then poured in, turning the mash vessel into the brew kettle. This setup makes for a more cumbersome and lengthy brewing process, but does not require the initial investment of the ideal three vessel configuration.


See all grain recipes in Lee's Brewery Recipes page.

Brewing Process

  1. Add approximately gallon of water for each pound of grain called for in the recipe to the mashing vessel. Note: The amount of water necessary in the mash kettle will depend on the type of mash screen you use. You'll want to have about one inch of water on top of the grain bed once the grain settles. You can add water as necessary later to adjust.
  2. Heat water in mashing vessel to 130-140F.
  3. Add crushed grain to the mashing vessel and stir thoroughly.
  4. Now let the mash "rest" by leaving it undisturbed for 30 minutes.
  5. Raise the temperature of the mash to 155F, stirring occasionally to assure that the grain does not get scorched or burnt.
  6. Once 155F has been reached, turn off the heat. Note: If your recipe calls for a different temperature, use it.
  7. Mashing: Keep the mash temperature at 155F for 60 minutes, stirring occasionally. This is where the bulk of the work gets done, the grain's starches are now being converted to fermentable sugars. Note: Follow recipe's recommended mashing time if different.
  8. Near the end of the mash, begin heating water for the hot water tank. For a 5 gallon batch of beer, you'll need approximately a total 5 gallons of water in the hot water tank. If your heating the water in a pot on the stove and then adding to the hot water tank, heat as much as you can at a time. You should have at least 2 gallons ready by the start of the lautering process. If your hot water tank has it's own burner you can begin heating the entire 5 gallons. The water in the hot water tank will need to be at least 175F.
  9. After 60 minutes (or time called for in the recipe) of mashing, raise the mash's temperature to 175F, stirring and being careful not to scorch the mash.
  10. Once 175F has been reached, turn off heat to the mash vessel and let the mash rest for 30 minutes.
  11. Sparging: Begin a slow flow water from the mash kettle to the wort collection vessel or brew pot if your using a true 3 vessel setup. As the beginning of the runoff is quite cloudy, you'll want to catch the first pint or so in a glass container. Pour this back into the mash kettle to be recirculated.
  12. Now begin a slow flow of water from the hot water tank to the mash kettle through the lautering arm. The lautering arm should distribute the water evenly over the surface of the grain bed to prevent channeling or tunnels of water through the grain. The lautering process washes the sugars away from the grain into the brew kettle, creating your wort.
  13. For a five gallon batch of beer, you'll want to collect 6 gallons of wort. For a 10 gallon batch, you'll want to collect 12 gallons of wort.
  14. If you're using a true 3 vessel configuration, with 3 burners, you can begin heating the wort as it is being collected into the brew kettle. If using a setup similar to Lee's Brewery, you'll have to wait until the end of the lautering process, clean out the mash kettle and pour the wort back in.
  15. Heat wort to boiling and follow procedure called for in the recipe.
  16. 15 minutes before the end of the boil, add 1 tablespoon of yeast extract to the wort. This will provide valuable nutrients needed for a healthy fermentation for the yeast that will be added later.
  17. After cooling the wort using the wort chiller, use a combination of aeration stone, sterile filter and aquarium compressor to aerate the wort for approximately 60 minutes. This will saturate the wort with oxygen. Yeast need oxygen during the initial stage of fermentation to build up healthy cell walls. These healthy cell walls will help the yeast cells to better reproduce and survive longer as alcohol levels in your beer gets higher. The result, a more completely fermented, cleaner and dryer tasting beer.
  18. Pitch the yeast starter and ferment as outlined in the Intermediate Brewing Guide.

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Revised: Sunday, December 21, 1997 22:18:49
Copyright 1996 by [Lee's Brewery].
All trademarks or product names mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners.