The brewhouse is the most complex and most varied part of the brewery equipment. The brewhouse system in a craft brewery is mainly composed of four parts: mash tank, Lauter tank, kettle tank, and whirlpool tank. According to different needs, the brewhouse system has different combinations. After that, the brewhouse system can match and combine for customers according to their different output and functions, and provide customers with customized services.
Commercial brewing equipment is usually equipped with a 2 vessel or 3 vessel brewhouse. Of course, some large breweries will must a 4 vessel brewhouse. Below, Micet Craft will explain to you what are the characteristics of these types of brewhouses.
2 Vessel Brewhouse
This type of brewhouse equipment is used more in the craft brewing industry. It is mainly composed of Mash/Lauter tank and Kettle/Whirlpool tank. The function of the Mash/Lauter tank is to mash and lauter the wort. The function of the Kettle/Whirlpool tank is to heat and whirlpool the wort. If you configure a hot water tank, the work efficiency can be increased by 50%.
Advantages of 2 Vessel Brewhouse System
- The equipment is simple and the investment is small;
- The pipeline is simple and easy to operate;
- The equipment height is low, and the requirements on the site height are not high;
Disadvantages of 2 Vessel Brewhouse System
- When the wort is filtered, only suction filtration can be used (that is, the mash is in the filter tank and the wort is drawn through the wort pump). The filtering speed of this filtering method is relatively slow, and the requirements for the winemaker are higher. Once operated and used, it may result in the compaction of the lees layer, difficult to filter, and in severe cases, the sieve plate will be deformed;
- According to the different brewing processes, some customers will add a stirrer in the Kettle/Whirlpool tank, because the kettle/whirlpool tank has the function of the whirlpool tank, and the stirrer will affect the whirlpool effect;
- The spent grains washing water can only be prepared in advance and stored in a container or fermentation tank;
- In the mashing process, only the method of adding two mash together can be used. This mashing method has fewer temperature steps and higher requirements for malt quality.
- Generally, only two batches can be brewed a day, and the winemaker may need to stay up late to work overtime.
Two Vessel Brewhouse
- Mash & lauter tun combination
- Brew kettle & whirlpool combination; popular for infusion mashing
- Mash & kettle & whirlpool combination
- Lauter tank, normally used for decoction mashing
- Hot liquor tank- HLT is a standard brewery method that allows the brewer to prepare hot water and heat to use before the brew, and can also be used for cleaning tanks and sparging.
Combine 2 Tank 3 Vessel Brewhouse
The combination of this equipment is generally kettle tank+mash/lauter tank+whirlpool tank. Among them, the lauter/whirlpool tank is composed of an upper and lower two-layer structure, the upper layer is the lauter tank, and the lower layer is the whirlpool tank. The brewhouse of this structure is usually used in beer bars or restaurants.
Combine 2 Tank 3 Vessel Brewhouse Advantages
- The equipment is more compact and the floor space is small;
- The heating area of the steam jacket of the kettle tank is generally large, and the heating speed is fast;
- The lauter tank is above the whirlpool tank, which can realize natural filtration (wort is filtered by gravity). This filtering method has a fast filtering speed and a high brightness of the wort. Even if the operation is wrong, there will be no compaction of the grains layer and deformation of the sieve plate;
- The whirlpool tank is a vertical cylindrical tank design. Because it is a dedicated whirlpool tank, the spinner is designed as a tangential spinner, so the separation effect of hop lees and hot coagulum is better;
- When the wort is filtered, the kettle tank can prepare the spent grains water, and the spent grains can be washed while filtering. This operation can shorten the mashing time by 30-50 minutes, and the use rate is higher than that of the 2 vessel brewhouse system;
- Generally, 2 batches can be brewed every 12 hours. If you consider staying up late and working overtime, you can brew 3 to 4 batches a day. At the peak of beer sales, more craft beer can be brewed in the shortest time;
Combine 2 Tank 3 Vessel Brewhouse Disadvantages
- The equipment is generally higher than the traditional 2 vessel brewhouse equipment, which has certain requirements for the height of the site;
- The equipment investment is higher than the traditional 2 vessel brewhouse equipment. Also, Combine 2 tank 3 vessel brewhouse equipment has a limit on the volume, the largest is 1000L.
3 Vessel Brewhouse
This kind of equipment is commonly found in small and medium-sized breweries, and the equipment has a variety of combinations. The commonly used combinations are as follows:
- mash tank+lauter tank+kettle/whirlpool tank
- mash/lauter tank+kettle tank+whirlpool tank
- mash/kettle tank+lauter tank+whirlpool tank
- mash/kettle tank+lauter/whirlpool tank+hot liquid tank
Advantages of 3 Vessel Brewhouse
- The daily brewing batch is like Combine 2 tank 3 vessel brewhouse equipment;
- The height of the equipment is relatively short;
- A variety of combinations can be selected, and it can be transformed into a 4 vessel brewhouse in the later stage;
Disadvantages of 3 Vessel Brewhouse
- Only suction filtration can be used for filtration;
- The equipment occupies a large area and requires more investment.
4 Vessel Brewhouse
Such equipment is commonly found in small or medium-sized breweries. The brewhouse will also be equipped with a hot liquid tank, which can greatly improve production efficiency.
Advantages of 4 Vessel Brewhouse
The division of labor in each part of the 4 vessel brewhouse is clear, which significantly reduces mashing time and improves production efficiency. Up to 5 batches of beer can be brewed per day.
Disadvantages of 4 Vessel Brewhouse
- The equipment is relatively large in size and area. Under current transportation conditions, this type of equipment can only achieve a largest of 3000L. No matter how large the volume is, on-site construction is required;
- The equipment investment is relatively large;
If you are not sure which type of brewhouse equipment you should choose, you can contact Micet Craft. Micet Craft is one of the best brewery equipment manufacturers in China, and we can provide you with a turnkey solution. Of course, we can also customize the design and production of brewery equipment according to your requirements. We very much hope to be able to help you.
Get a Turnkey Solution for Brewery Equipment
If you plan to open or expand the brewery, you can contact Micet Group directly. Our engineers will design and manufacture brewery equipment according to your brewing process. Of course, we will also provide you with a complete turnkey solution. Also, if you plan to expand the brewery, we will provide you with customized solutions.