• Add description, images, menus and links to your mega menu

  • A column with no settings can be used as a spacer

  • Link to your collections, sales and even external links

  • Add up to five columns

  • December 18, 2023 7 min read

    The Evolution of Brew-in-a-Bag (BIAB) Brewing: Unibrau Brew System

    Pictured below is the first version of the Unibräu Brew system released in 2014.
    Original unibrau brew system circa 2014

    The Evolution of Brew-in-a-Bag (BIAB) Brewing: Unibrau Brew System

    The Birth of BIAB: A Retro Revolution

    BIAB brewing has deep roots, dating back to its early beginnings as a simple and efficient method for creating flavorful beer. Over the past half-decade, it has experienced a resurgence in popularity, captivating the hearts of homebrewers worldwide. This revival comes as no surprise, given the multitude of benefits that BIAB offers to both newcomers and seasoned brewing enthusiasts.

    As a former devotee of the traditional three-vessel brewing setup, I can attest to the allure of BIAB. Despite investing significant time and money into my elaborate system, I eventually realized that BIAB brewing held a distinct advantage. With BIAB, achieving the same flavor profile as high-end professional brewing systems becomes attainable. Additionally, BIAB systems are compact, easy to set up, and require less equipment, translating into cost savings and space efficiency. Some BIAB setups even eliminate the need for household electrical modifications. Plus, as long as you're using a nylon bag – which is inert and non-leaching – concerns about steeping it in hot wort become a thing of the past.

    However, the most compelling advantage of BIAB is the time it saves. While a brew day can consume a laborious eight to nine hours with a traditional three-vessel system, BIAB can have your brew in the fermenter in under four hours.

    Dispelling the Efficiency Myth

    One commonly held belief about BIAB is that it sacrifices efficiency for convenience. Traditional three-vessel setups, known for their thorough grain rinsing to maximize sugar conversion, can achieve up to 90% efficiency. In contrast, the standard brew-in-a-bag method typically yields around 65% efficiency. However, with a few savvy techniques, you can boost your BIAB efficiency to at least 80%, narrowing the gap and mitigating any potential losses.

    One significant efficiency boost comes from starting with an exceptionally fine grain crush. Requesting a double crush from your local homebrew shop is a wise move. Concerns about extracting excessive tannins in the beer due to a finer crush are unwarranted in BIAB, as the faster process minimizes the risk of tannin extraction.

    Next, extend your mash time to 90 minutes instead of the standard 60 minutes. This ensures complete sugar conversion and contributes to enhanced efficiency.

    For an extra gravity boost, consider this trick: heat a large pot of water on the stove to the mash-out temperature and rinse your grains after removing them. Place the grains in your primary bucket or a suitable container, then rinse them with water at the ideal mash-out temperature of 168 degrees Fahrenheit. Collect the rinse water and pour it into the boil, maximizing your volume from the small brew system and increasing efficiency by up to 10%. Don't forget to subtract your mash addition from your initial strike volume for accurate measurements.

    Lastly, find a way to squeeze or press your grain bag before discarding it. This simple step can yield a bit more wort, which is denser and more concentrated, making it well worth the effort.

    Managing the Mess and Safety

    One minor downside of BIAB brewing is the potential for messiness, but this can be easily remedied with proper preparation. First, ensure you're using a system that incorporates a basket or mash screen over the heating element to avoid any risk of melting through your bag.

    Second, be prepared to handle the hot grain bag when it's time to remove it. For larger batches, you might be dealing with a scalding-hot bag laden with saturated grains, weighing upwards of 25 pounds. If you lack the strength to lift it safely without spilling your precious wort, consider installing a hoist. Keep a five-gallon bucket nearby, or position your brewer close to the sink, allowing you to safely dump the bag to cool. Beware of the scorching heat emanating from the grains, as it can cause burns.

    The Future of BIAB Brewing: Unibrau Brew System

    As we navigate the world of BIAB brewing, it's essential to embrace innovation and explore tools that enhance the experience. One such groundbreaking advancement is the Unibrau Brew System by Brau Supply. This innovative system revolutionizes BIAB brewing by eliminating the bag and introducing a stainless steel grain basket.

    The Unibrau Brew System not only simplifies the brewing process but also elevates the quality of your beer. Say goodbye to concerns about bag integrity and wort contamination. With the stainless steel grain basket, you can rest assured that your brew will be pristine and free from unwanted elements.

    Furthermore, the Unibrau system promotes efficiency, making it easier to achieve higher mash efficiency percentages. It's designed to maximize the advantages of BIAB while minimizing its limitations, making it an ideal choice for both novice and experienced brewers.

    The Unibrau Advantage: Stainless Steel Brilliance

    The Unibrau Brew System is a true game-changer for BIAB enthusiasts. By replacing the traditional nylon bag with a stainless steel grain basket, it not only simplifies the brewing process but also elevates the quality of your beer. Here's why the Unibrau system stands out:

    1. Enhanced Wort Clarity

    The stainless steel grain basket in the Unibrau system ensures optimal clarity of your wort. Unlike nylon bags, which may leach unwanted flavors or particles into your brew, stainless steel remains inert and maintains the purity of your beer. Say goodbye to worries about off-flavors or unwanted contaminants.

    2. Durability and Reusability

    Investing in the Unibrau Brew System is an investment in durability and sustainability. Stainless steel is built to last, ensuring your grain basket will serve you for countless brews. Forget about replacing worn-out bags; with Unibrau, you have a reliable, reusable solution.

    3. Easy Cleaning

    Cleaning up after a brew day has never been easier. Stainless steel is non-porous and resistant to staining, making it a breeze to clean. Simply rinse and sanitize your grain basket, and it's ready for your next batch. No more wrestling with soaked and soiled nylon bags.

    4. Superior Wort Extraction

    The Unibrau system's stainless steel grain basket promotes efficient wort extraction, allowing you to achieve high mash efficiency percentages consistently. This means you can maximize your beer yield and get the most out of your ingredients.

    5. Precise Temperature Control

    Stainless steel has excellent thermal conductivity, ensuring precise temperature control during your mash. Achieve the ideal conditions for sugar conversion without fluctuations or guesswork.

    6. Compact and Space-Efficient

    While the Unibrau Brew System boasts all these advantages, it remains compact and space-efficient, perfect for homebrewers with limited brewing areas. It's a testament to innovation and efficiency, designed with the brewer's needs in mind.

    Exploring Advanced BIAB Techniques

    Now that you've discovered the Unibrau advantage, let's delve further into advanced BIAB techniques to help you fine-tune your brewing process and unlock the full potential of your Unibrau Brew System.

    1. Step Mashing

    One exciting aspect of BIAB brewing with the Unibrau system is the flexibility it offers for step mashing. Unlike traditional methods that may require complex temperature adjustments, the Unibrau's precise temperature control allows you to easily implement step mashing techniques. Experiment with various temperature profiles to create complex and nuanced beer styles, from lagers to saisons.

    2. Recipe Customization

    The Unibrau system empowers you to explore recipe customization with ease. Its efficiency and reliability mean you can experiment with different grains, hops, and adjuncts to craft unique beer flavors. Whether you're inspired by classic styles or eager to push the boundaries of brewing, the Unibrau Brew System is your creative canvas.

    3. Extended Fermentation Possibilities

    With the Unibrau Brew System, you can explore extended fermentation techniques. The high-quality wort clarity achieved through stainless steel brewing allows for extended aging periods and the development of complex flavors. Consider aging your beer for longer durations to create truly exceptional brews.

    4. Consistency and Reproducibility

    One of the key advantages of the Unibrau system is its consistency. Achieving the same high mash efficiency and wort clarity batch after batch becomes second nature. This level of reproducibility is essential for perfecting your favorite recipes and ensuring that every brew meets your exacting standards.


    In conclusion, Brew-in-a-Bag (BIAB) brewing has come full circle, evolving into a dynamic and efficient method that appeals to homebrewers of all levels. Its advantages, including space-saving, cost-effectiveness, and time efficiency, make it an appealing choice for those seeking a streamlined brewing experience.

    Moreover, dispelling the myth of reduced efficiency in BIAB is achievable through simple techniques like fine grain crushing, extended mash times, and strategic rinsing. These methods can elevate your efficiency to levels that rival traditional three-vessel setups.

    As you embark on your BIAB brewing journey, consider embracing the Unibrau Brew System by Brau Supply. This cutting-edge system takes BIAB brewing to new heights by eliminating the bag and introducing a stainless steel grain basket. Say goodbye to bag-related hassles and experience the future of BIAB brewing.

    Whether you're a BIAB enthusiast or a curious newcomer, the Unibrau Brew System promises to elevate your brewing experience, ensuring that every batch is a testament to the art and science of homebrewing. Explore the possibilities of BIAB brewing today, and raise a glass to the Unibrau Brew System – the future of brewing innovation!

    With advanced techniques and the Unibrau advantage at your disposal, your BIAB brewing journey is bound for greatness. Unlock the potential of your craft and savor the rewards of unparalleled beer quality and creativity. Cheers to the evolution of homebrewing!

    More articles how to brew beer

    The ultimate guide to Kveik yeast: Unleashing it's fermentation potential

    Revolutionizing home brewing: The simplified art of no sparge brewing

    Exploring amber ales: A guide with a twist on the traditional recipe

    Mastering cold crashing: Enhancing beer clarity and accelerating the aging process

    The comprehensive guide to mash PH in all grain brewing: Achieving the perfect balance for exceptional beer

    What is the basic function of the fermenter?

    What causes a fermenter to heat up?

    The art of lagering: A guide to perfecting the cold conditioning process

    Troubleshooting fermentation problems in brewing: A comprehensive guide