New to brewing and tried my own recipe

Discussion in 'Recipes for Feedback' started by davidc88, Jun 3, 2017.

  1. davidc88

    davidc88 New Member

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    I've brewed a couple 1 gallon recipes with okay results and decided to take the plunge and get the equipment for doing 5 gallon batches. I went to my LHBS and the guy there helped me make an extract recipe on Brewer's Friend. I made a couple adjustments to the recipe once I got home and then brewed the beer last weekend. I feel that i was very sanitary and did everything correctly in to brewing process. I also used a years starter that i made about 18 hours before pitching. The airlock was bubbling within 4 hours. It is now day 8 in the primary fermentor and I'm still seeing bubble come out of the air lock every few second. The krausen has begun to fall and only about 1/2 - 1" thick now. I decided to get and OG and tasted the beer and was not happy with the flavor. I understand its flat beer and nit dry hopped yet but there are some weird flavors I'm getting. IT a bitterness but IMO not a hoppy bitterness. Kind of a harsh bitterness on the sides of the tougue. The beer seems to be a little "water" and sweet to me too. My OG was 1.062 and today I got 1.020, which is a little higher than my target FG. Any opinions? I know its hard to say within tasting the better but maybe someone can't critique the recipe at least.

    These are the stats calculated by BF and I followed the recipe exactly.

    David's IPA
    Method: Extract
    Style: American IPA
    Boil Time: 60 min
    Batch Size: 5.5 gallons (fermentor volume)
    Boil Size: 7 gallons
    Boil Gravity: 1.051 (recipe based estimate)
    Efficiency: 35% (steeping grains only)


    Original Gravity:
    1.065
    Final Gravity:
    1.016
    ABV (standard):
    6.42%
    IBU (tinseth):
    66.38
    SRM (morey):
    7.65




    Fermentables
    Amount Fermentable PPG °L Bill %
    9.9 lb Liquid Malt Extract - Light 35 4 90.8%
    9.9 lb Total
    Steeping Grains
    Amount Fermentable PPG °L Bill %
    1 lb American - Caramel / Crystal 20L 35 20 9.2%
    Hops
    Amount Variety Type AA Use Time IBU
    1 oz Columbus Pellet 15 Boil 60 min 51.25
    0.5 oz Cascade Pellet 7 Boil 30 min 9.19
    0.5 oz Cascade Pellet 7 Boil 15 min 5.93
    1 oz Cascade Leaf/Whole 7 Dry Hop 5 days

    Hops Summary
    Amount Variety Type AA
    1 oz Cascade Leaf/Whole 7
    1 oz Cascade Pellet 7
    1 oz Columbus Pellet 15
    Other Ingredients
    Amount Name Type Use Time
    0.5 tsp irish moss Other Boil 10 min.
    Yeast
    Wyeast - American Ale 1056
    Attenuation (avg):
    75%
    Flocculation:
    Med-Low
    Optimum Temp:
    60 - 72 °F
    Starter:
    Yes
    Fermentation Temp:
    68 °F
     
  2. ChuckGViolin

    ChuckGViolin Member

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    I'm a little new to this myself, but it seems to me your OG and FG are both a little high. I'm not altogether sure you need the caramel/crystal malt at all here. Or at least less of it. I've read where you want less than 8%caramel malt in your bill. Also, your hop additions seem very early and will provide lots of bitterness but little flavor/aroma. Cascade is a great hop but maybe next time change the additions to 15 and 5 minutes. That will give you less bitterness and more flavor. Cascade has a great flavor.

    The caramel malt adds to your OG and FG. It'll give you a very sweet beer and maybe not clean and crisp/dry. As for yeast, you might try Safale-05. It'll get that FG down a little more. Are you certain your fermentation temp was 68? Wyeast 1056 is a great yeast, but needs a lower temp than Safale-05. The 05 will ferment just fine at 72-75. Remember, the higher the temp, the more potential for off flavors. The yeast will still work (probably better and faster) but the flavors will be a little yucky.

    I've learned a lot here. Most of what I've written above has been from feedback on some of my recipes. You might look through those threads to pick up some more tips. The folks here (and at Homebrewtalk) are awesome. This is a brew-drink-adjust-brew again type of game.

    Don't worry if this one turns out less-than-great. Don't quit if you brew a bad batch. Everyone has gone through a long brew day and bottled only to have the beer suck out loud. I think I might have one of those sucks like a chest wound batches bottling conditioning right now. I'm not worried about that, though. I can't wait to brew the next one! ;)
     
  3. Mark D Pirate

    Mark D Pirate Well-Known Member

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    Did you boil the grain by any chance ?
    Your recipe looks ok to me but i use different bittering rates , aiming for about a third of my IBU from the 60 min addition and bigger late additions to get a layered bitterness without becoming harsh

    It's a learning curve to brew great beer but stick at it and see how much better it gets

    Attached link is the off flavours chapter of "How to Brew" by John Palmer , good descriptions of the most common flaws http://howtobrew.com/book/section-4/is-my-beer-ruined/common-off-flavors
     
  4. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    #4 Ozarks Mountain Brew, Jun 4, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2017
    one tip, never rely on time as a means to say its done, its done when its done and 1020 is not done, you should leave it for another week at least

    edit oh and forgot to say "welcome to the forum" :)
     
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  5. CRUNK

    CRUNK Well-Known Member

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    You did not fail to brew a beer to your satisfaction you learned how to brew it better next time.

    My one piece of advise, always be as detailed as possible write everything down in a notebook you'll do fine, and these folks will always be able to help.

    Good job, and welcome to brewing and welcome to the forums.
     
  6. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    The recipe is good with the exception of the bitterness addition. that's a LOT of Columbus at 60. Columbus/Cascade and Columbus/Centennial are excellent hop combos, but do about 1/3 of the IBUs with Columbus at 60 and then bring some back in at 15-20 for a big flavor without so much bitterness. And use more Cascade late. And try for IBUs in the 50 range until you find your stride. Tweak it for next time and do something like this:
    .5 oz Columbus @ 60
    1 oz Cascade @20
    .5 oz Columbus @ 15
    1 oz Cascade @ 5
    1 oz Cascade dry hop

    Fresh hops in the first few samples you'll take are really, really bitter - you won't taste much else. It mellows a lot as it goes. Let it go for a while until the gravity drops. If you get a clean fermentation, you'll have a bold IPA and when you tweak it to mellow the hop profile and get big aroma and flavor to go with the bitterness, you'll be very happy with it.
     
  7. davidc88

    davidc88 New Member

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    Thanks for for for the help and encouragement! It sounds like I need to learn a little more about hop additions. I've read most of How To Brew and have drowned myself in brewing information on the internet that bast few weeks. I see a new addiction of home brewing in the making.

    Chuck, my basement stays quite cool and the actual temp through out fermentation has been 65-68 and no warmer, so I at least know it wasn't to warm. I'll take your advise and will probably use less crystal malt the next time. I do like a slight golden color to my IPAs sometimes though.

    Mark, I didn't boil the specialty grains. I steeped them around 165-170 degrees for 30 minutes before removing them and starting my 60 minute boil. Is that a little too warm or too long?

    And JA, I'm definitely going to tweak this recipe and try it again. so I may take your Hop additions and apply them in my next brew session. I'm determined to make this recipe work and to make a good beer with my own recipe.

    I got another SG on my beer today and it was down one point (1.019) so I know I definitely need to give it more time. I guess I just didn't realize it could take this beer this long to get to its FG. I also though the krausen would fall after fermentation. I'm ok with that though. I have plenty of beers in the fridge to help me pass the time and I'm enjoying learning all about home brewing in the meantime.
     
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  8. ChuckGViolin

    ChuckGViolin Member

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    JA has helped me immeasurably in my recipe creation and eventual brewing. Every recipe I've put up here for comments, he has told me to ease off the crystal malt. If I ever take his advice, I might get a great beer instead of a good one. :D There are quite a few alternatives to straight up crystal/caramel that will give you the color you seek. Look them up on a site like Northerbrewer or google the different malts. I bookmarked a great site for hops, but haven't found a good one for malts yet.

    Good news on the basement temps. That's a great range that will allow you to brew almost everything. I wish I had a basement - only a crawl space that's gross. Here in Atlanta, my house never gets below 77 in the summer. I have to use a swamp cooler which works fine but is a giant pain in my @!#$
     
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  9. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like me chuck. Think it's winter here and it only drops down to around 10c at night :cool: no heat belt needed. I think you'll love fermenting in a freezer it'll save you a lot of back breaking work lugging around that water:rolleyes:.
     
  10. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Next best thing is to dive in and make some mistakes I always learn best that way lol:p. Or take other more experienced Brewers advice on here:rolleyes:.
     
  11. davidc88

    davidc88 New Member

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    Sounds like I came to the right place for great help and support! I guess my next question is, Since I've kind of failed in the aroma/favor area of this batch of beer so far, Should I dry hop it with more hops to at least get some more aroma out of it and make the best of what i have? I plan on using 1 oz of Cascade pellets. When I've obtained samples for my gravities I've definitely notice it is very much lacking in the aroma dept, but I also know i haven't dry hopped yet. I know I can't fix what's already been done, but I'm just wondering if more dry hops will help.
     
  12. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    You haven't necessarily failed anything. Yes dry-hopping will add a huge aroma component. Don't be afraid to throw in several ounces of hops for an IPA. Be careful about leaving them in too long. Grassy/vegetal flavors can result. I would dry-hop after about 10 days in primary and don't bother with transferring to secondary unless it needs additional clearing after dry-hopping. Seven days would be a good maximum time for dry-hopping but some brewers go 10. Some hops do better than others for long dry-hopping IMO.
    You can either double down on the Cascade or use an ounce of Centennial or Simcoe in addition to that. Centennial is a lot like Cascade and will give you a classic old-school Northwest IPA profile with floral/citrus and Simcoe will add in a layer of lush tropical fruit notes.
    If the fermentation stays clean for you, you'll have a good beer out of it.
     
  13. ChuckGViolin

    ChuckGViolin Member

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    Any way you slice it, you'll have a very drinkable and probably very good beer. The only way to get better is to learn from what you did, and fix it next time.

    I just drank my first bottle from my second brew of my brown IPA recipe. I changed the hops (bittered with Magnum and finished with Amarillo), and took out the coffee malt (didn't taste good/right). This one is, in every way, much better. I still might tweak it some more to get a cleaner taste, but it's a perfect example of trying something, then adjusting to your own taste.
     
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  14. Classic LL

    Classic LL New Member

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    I wouldn't rush to judgement on your beer quite yet.

    Fermentation is a multi-staged process, and it sounds like your primary fermentation is still going strong, so what you're tasting is flooded with active yeast cells and all sorts of fermentation byproducts that will eventually be broken down even further by the yeast.

    I've had a few beers that I've tried tasting each day during a fermentation and the taste evolves noticeably day-over-day, even after visible fermentation has ceased.
     
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  15. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Dry hopping will definitely add the aroma your looking for.
     
  16. davidc88

    davidc88 New Member

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    I will definitely add another ounce to the dry hop then. I'll head to my LHBS on Wednesday and pick up some more. Thanks for all the support and advise. I can tell I'm going to learn a lot from you guys.
     

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