All in one electric homebrewing systems like the Mash & Boil are incredibly popular. At $299.99, the Brewer's Edge Mash & Boil is at the lower end of the price spectrum, but is it a good value? We answer that question as well as just about anything you could ever want to know about the Mash & Boil. Grab a homebrew and watch this video!
Here is a recap of the video and all of our likes and dislikes.
- Slow heat times which is expected with just a 1600 watt heating element. Use the timer.
- The temperature in the control panel is all over the place.
- You will need a good quality calibrated thermometer.
- The control panel location makes it hard to read.
- You have to heat your sparge water separately in a different vessel or use room temperature sparge water.
- Small footprint. Easy to store and take little space to use.
- Runs off of a 15 amp circuit. (Standard Household Current)
- The mash basket is a nice size and it goes all the way to the top of the unit. No annoying malt pipe like the robobrew and grainfather.
- Easily handled my 12lb grain bill. It’s rated for 16lbs and there was plenty of room in the mash basket with my 12 lb grain bill in there.
- Surprisingly, this unit held my mash temp for the entire hour with no fluctuation. No recirculation was necessary to maintain mash temp. I did do a vorlauf before sparging. I measured the mash temp every 10 minutes with my calibrated thermometer and it was within a half a degree every time. This was despite the control panel temperature being all over the place. I set the mash temp on the panel at 150 and my mash settled at 151. The actual temp on the control panel would range from 146 to 154 but the thermal mass created by the grain and water stayed very consistent.
- Sparging was simple and took about half an hour.
- Achieved a nice roiling boil. See the video.
- If you do post boil hop additions you can set your steep temperature and the controller will keep it there.
- Also if you are interested in sour brewing, the temp controller makes it easy to do a kettle sour.
Some things you will need.
- A good calibratable thermometer
- A sturdy spoon or mash paddle
- A wort chiller
- I highly recommend using Fermcap to prevent a boil over.
- For safety reasons we recommend you use a GFCI or Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter to plug your mash & boil into. GFCI’s are inexpensive and can save a life.
- Mash & Boil recommends using 0.3 gallons of mash water per pound of grain. 12 lbs of grain X .3 = 3.6 gallons of mash water. Because of the feet to raise the grain basket off the bottom of the kettle this makes for a fairly thick mash. This is not a problem just an observation. I prefer a little thinner mash just because I think it’s easier to completely stir in the grain. I think its something you can play with.
- If you want to use a recirculation pump you will definitely need to use a thinner mash. There is just not enough mash water at the .3 gallon per lb rate to keep a recirculation going. I also found that recirculation was just not necessary to help maintain mash temp.
- I got 72.7% mash efficiency with this unit. I think this number will give you a good baseline to use when building your recipes. Smaller grain bill might give you a little higher mash efficiency and a larger grain bill might bring it down a little bit.
- It took 43 minutes to bring 48 degree water up to 150 degrees. Use the timer.
- It will take around 30 to 45 minutes to bring your wort to a boil depending on how hot your sparge water is. If you use a room temperature sparge it will take close to an hour to get to a boil.
All in all, the Mash & Boil lives up to its name. It mashes well, and it boils well. At $299.99 what more can you ask for? Cheers!