Fresh Wee Heavy Taste

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by Brewer #334545, Feb 1, 2021.

  1. Brewer #334545

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    Hey Everyone,
    I just kegged my first wee heavy and wondered if anyone had any experience with these brews.
    as it stands right now it tastes like a very clean and crisp ale not much flavor at all, maybe a touch of booze burn.
    I plan on letting this one age in a keg till next oct / November.

    I am hoping this is normal and that as the hop flavor fades the malt and sweetness will come out.
    anyone else have experience here?
    colour came out a nice dark copper so i am looking forward to it.

    thanks,
    -Will
     
  2. hundel

    hundel Member

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    Hi Will. I do not have experience with heavy Scottish ales but do have experience with bitters and browns of all weights.

    Yes, if the hops are interfering with subtle malt notes on your tongue then that will work itself out, but the dark malts in a wee heavy should have no problem making their presence felt from the start and it’d be unexpected if they weren’t standing out enough for you to tell just where this beer was heading in early tastings.

    Could you share the recipe and any notes in the session and maybe one of us will be able to help.
     
  3. Brewer #334545

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    Hey Hundel,
    upload_2021-2-1_10-31-42.png


    i ended up with an OG of 1.090, not sure on FG as i broke my hydrometer the other day.

    mashed @ 156 for 75 minutes
    90 min boil
    wyeast 1728 with 2L starter at 57F for 3 weeks,


     
  4. hundel

    hundel Member

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    That’s heavy all right. Out of curiosity what is the batch size that you used to get those numbers?
     
  5. Brewer #334545

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    5 gallon, i believe started out with 9.25 gallons had 5.75 in fermenter
     
  6. Brewer #334545

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    Ive also never used wyeast 1728 before, the pic with the cup was my keg overflow while the mason jar was my attempt at collecting the yeast, the beer on the cup tasted perfectly fine, but when i tipped the fermenter a pinch to get some more out i got this lighter brown beer out.
    is this just suspended yeast? its it terribly sour. i am starting to worry that i may have an infection now.

    -Will
     

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  7. hundel

    hundel Member

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    #7 hundel, Feb 1, 2021
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2021
    I have not used that strain but let me just say English yeasts certainly make for a “confused” flavor profile before they drop, and they can take forever to drop. Sometimes they taste tinny sometimes they taste tangy, sometimes they cost your tongue and make everything a pasty wash from there on out. Nothing representative of where the beer will end up at all in my experience. Not sure about the strain you used though.

    From the second picture it certainly looks like you’ve got a big cloud of yeast in suspension byt I get that you weren’t basing your tastings on that jar.

    Yours is a very heavy grain bill for a 5 gallon batch and I am surprised the ABV isn’t higher. You’ve provided lots of malt body and flavor. Although percentage-wise the adjuncts are not off the charts. Still, if you boiled it that long the carmelization would have accentuated that.

    My gut tells me a combination of a dense yeast wash over your tongue, possibly combined with a harsh boozy hit at the back of your throat was masking the malt flavors and you will have much more to like about it when that yeast clears out and the high ABV smooths out. Wish I could taste it to give better feedback. At any rate I don’t think that’s 6 months out but it could easily be 6 weeks out.

    I’m going to defer to others at this point. There is a lot of cumulative experience on these forums. Good luck and let us know how it goes.
     
  8. Brewer #334545

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    Hey really appreciate your feed back,

    Yes my initial tasting were based on the cup, I then tipped my fermenter a bit to top it off because there was still a bunch left and got some suspended yeast that got me worrying.

    I was a little disappointed with the caramel / sweetness I thought for sure it would of been sweeter it’s faintly sweet right now hopefully it intensifies, I really enjoy the wee heavy when they are near syrupy like beers.

    thanks.

    -Will
     
  9. BarbarianBrewer

    BarbarianBrewer Well-Known Member

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    I've brewed a Scottish Wee Heavy a couple times and actually have one bulk-aging since November. I plan to bottle it mid-summer and bottle condition until Thanksgiving. Your description of the flavors you report seems just about right. You won't get a burst of hop flavor or aroma like an IPA/NEIPA. The flavors at this point are subtle and malty. After aging for 6+ months those subtle non-descript flavors will change into a wonderful, rich, smooth, complex toffee/caramel flavor and aroma. I used this recipe as the source for mine https://www.brewersfriend.com/homebrew/recipe/view/239213/traquair-house-style-wee-heavy. A technique it calls for is to take a gallon of the first runnings and boil it separately until it's reduced to a quart or less. Then add it to the end of the main boil. It really increases the toffee/caramel flavors
     
  10. Brewer #334545

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    Thanks or your input, feeling better now.
    Should be a fun experiment.
     
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  11. hundel

    hundel Member

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    Will, I wonder if the recipes you liked included Special B (raisin/toffee) instead of Crystal 120 and English brown malt (chocolate) as well. I also started to wonder if you inadvertently drove some additional attenuation which dried things out but that seems highly unlikely with the grains you used and your mash temp.

    But looking at the recipe BarbarianBrewer links to, I'd say if they are getting enough malt complexity with just Golden Promise and Roast Barley (after aging) then you will definitely get it with the grain bill used in the recipe you posted.
     
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  12. Brewer #334545

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    thanks Hundel,
    i believe he generate all of his "dark" flavors from his one gallon boil off method
     

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