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Why is MO so dusty?

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  • Why is MO so dusty?

    I am curious if anyone might know why, or have a theory as to why, Marris Otter Malt is so darn dusty. I love the stuff, but don't use it that often. I get the real English, floor-malted stuff for some seasonals like British IPAs, or today's Scottish Heavy. My dust mask is always filthy after mash in - fine. My mash is always doughy - annoying, but fine, I always seem to get pretty good utilization. But sometimes it is just evil. I think it grinds up too fine occasionally. Today it was slowing my lauter down on both ends - the actual flow from the screen was really trickling (I had to let it go full bore a couple of times just to get it moving again). I know it wasn't crashed, both because I could fix it, and because the mash was really fluffy when I cleaned the grain out. That was annoying enough (and I've never had that happen before), but on top of that my pump kept struggling. The filter between my grant and my pump kept getting plugged today. The beer is light-bodied - probably 1.045 or so - so I expected no real issues (and didn't experience much yesterday). The beer is great, but MO pisses me off sometimes, as much as I love it.

    So, my real question isn't how to fix my issues, since in all reality they aren't that bad... I'm just curious what it is about this malt that might make it so different from everything else I use.

  • #2
    I agree the good floor-malted English MO is very dusty. I got fed up with grain bed compaction from dusty fines settling like a layer of glue on top of the grain bed, now I use a thicker mash to avoid free water above the grain bed which usually (but not always) helps. I don't know why it's so dusty. It's frustrating, but the malt tastes so good that I don't want to switch!