Author Topic: Looking for some input please  (Read 2274 times)

Offline duboman

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Looking for some input please
« on: April 09, 2012, 07:17:06 AM »
So my neighbor found this recipe in the last BYO in the article about brewing with honey and wants to brew it, just curious about some thoughts:

American Blackberry Honey Wheat
Batch size: 6.25 G (Original is 5G, scaled up for my system)
Efficiency 75%
60 min boil
pre-boil vol 8.97G
Est OG 1.050
Est FG 1.011
IBU 21.7
SRM 4.2
ABV 5.1%

6lbs 10.4oz Wheat Malt
4lbs 15.8oz Maris Otter

1.39oz Wiliamette (60min)
.63lb Malto-dextrine powder (5 min)
.38oz Williamette (0 min)
3lbs Blackberry Honey (0 min)

Single infusion at 154F with 2 step batch sparge at 168F

The recipe stated clean american yeast and I was looking for a suggestion as well as any critique on the recipe. My thought is it doesn't seem to have much character or complexity.

Thanks!
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Online morticaixavier

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Re: Looking for some input please
« Reply #1 on: April 09, 2012, 07:34:46 AM »
don't confuse recipe complexity with flavour complexity. Marris Otter all by itself has wonderful flavour complexity. add the tartness of wheat and the 'sweet' body from the mato-dextrine and you are getting somewhere.

The other thing to remember is that this is an easy drinking beer designed to be quaffable, not to amaze the pallet. You won't get a ton of character from the honey, and it's blackberry origins will not be noticable. In my opionion the blackberry origins of blackberry honey aren't very noticiable even by the spoonful. It's a lovely mild honey and is great to put in your tea but not particularly distinctive.

If you are after something like the longtrail blackbeary wheat, I think they add blackberry extract. You could try adding the honey to the fermentation late, like after primary is mostly done. This might help maintain some honey character and aroma.

Over all I think it looks like a good recipe. It's going to be very light and drinkable. Mash temps look good, you could even go a bit higher as the honey is going to dry things out quite a bit. that's probably what the matodexrine is for.
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Offline richardt

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Re: Looking for some input please
« Reply #2 on: April 09, 2012, 07:57:29 AM »
Perhaps not much as "lacking complexity" but rather "showing restraint" in order to allow the blackberry honey to have noticeable prominence in flavor and aroma.  If kegging (or bottling), you may wish to save some of the blackberry honey for late additions to the fermentor and/or priming in order to better retain the aroma.

Similarly, as tempting as it may be to change the grain bill (e.g., small %'s of honey malt, victory malt, or vienna malt), you're probably best to leave it as is unless you're looking for moderate malty sweetness.  I think you're going to get enough body from the malto-dextrin powder.  The wheat and MO malts should provide enough malt structure to support the honey and hop bitterness without overwhelming it. 

I'm not much of a Wilamette fan (flowers, fruit, earth, spice aromas)--it is OK, but I personally think Summit (robust citrus--orange, tangerine, grapefruit) or Mt Hood (Hallertau hybrid, clean, mild floral/spice/forest aromas) would be better choices.  I don't like "earthy" flavors or aromas--that's just my personal preference.   I'm also a fan of keeping the IBU's on the low end of the style, as well, especially with honey wheat beers.

Clean yeasts like WY1056 or WY1272 would work well, IMO.  I have no experience with WY1010 American Wheat.


Offline hokerer

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Re: Looking for some input please
« Reply #3 on: April 09, 2012, 08:57:03 AM »
Clean yeasts like WY1056 or WY1272 would work well, IMO.  I have no experience with WY1010 American Wheat.

I have used 1010.  Fermented half of one wheat batch with 1010 and the other with 1056 and I'll be danged if I could tell the difference.  Certainly no reason for me to keep 1010 around.
Joe

Offline richardt

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Re: Looking for some input please
« Reply #4 on: April 09, 2012, 09:34:59 AM »
If you really want to get the blackberry aroma in the finished beer--you'll need some sort of clear blackberry extract or syrup.  Something like this might work https://www.lorannoils.com/p-8284-blackberry-flavor.aspx

Offline bluesman

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Re: Looking for some input please
« Reply #5 on: April 09, 2012, 09:41:59 AM »
If you really want to get the blackberry aroma in the finished beer--you'll need some sort of clear blackberry extract or syrup.  Something like this might work https://www.lorannoils.com/p-8284-blackberry-flavor.aspx

+1

While I think you'll get SOME flavor from the honey it will be subtle at best. Adding blackberry extract will lend a significant blackberry flavor/aroma.  I recommend adding a small dose (few drops) to a wheat beer to get the right dosage for your tastes.  Then scale that up for a batch size.
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Offline richardt

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Re: Looking for some input please
« Reply #6 on: April 09, 2012, 09:47:17 AM »
Again, show "restraint" with the blackberry extract/syrup addition.  Barely noticeable/pleasant is the endpoint I'd recommend.

Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Looking for some input please
« Reply #7 on: April 09, 2012, 10:20:40 AM »
It's true that blackberry honey tastes nothing like blackberries, it is a very mild honey.  Good as a base for other flavors, but not very interesting on its own.

And I would stay well away from Summit hops unless you have had and enjoyed a beer made with them.  To me they are overwhelmingly oniony, and I'm not the only one who thinks so.  See the Oskar Blues Gubna thread in commercial beers - if you like that beer use them, but I'd try it first or you might end up dumping the whole batch.

As for it lacking character and complexity - it's an American Wheat moved one step further into lame territory by adding a bunch of flavorless honey.  Lacking in character and complexity is what should be expected.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline richardt

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Re: Looking for some input please
« Reply #8 on: April 09, 2012, 11:00:03 AM »
Tom is correct to caution you about the onion flavor (if used as a flavor addition), and I have experienced it once when I tried an all-Summit hop IPA (like Oskar Blues Gubna).  However, I've also brewed other beers with Summit hops and have not experienced the onion flavor/aroma.  I think I may need to be more careful about my suppliers and the freshness of my hops--I'm just not sure yet to what the different experiences  should be attributed.  Nonetheless, many folks say it gives great citrus character as long as it is fermented below 65F.  YMMV.  Another possibility is that different people may taste the various hop-derived molecules in the same beer and get completely different results (viz. PROP or PTC).

Be sure to check out "peaches-n-cream" hefe.  Many parallels can be found in that recipe.  However, be sure to use American yeast 1056 or 1272 not WL300 (German Hefe yeast-->big-time bananas-n-cloves)
http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/pages/community/blog/show?title=recipe-of-the-week-peaches-n-cream-hefe

Offline duboman

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Re: Looking for some input please
« Reply #9 on: April 09, 2012, 01:33:34 PM »
Thanks for all the great information and Yes, I did visit the peaches n' cream recipe of the month, printed it out and put it on my to do list. Back to the Blackberry Wheat.......

I too was thinking 1056 for the yeast so I'm good with that. Thinking further, what our your thoughts about perhaps adding 4-6oz of Honey Malt to impart some of the honey flavor and then bring in the Blackberry aroma with the recommended extract?

In exploring the Honey, it is quite pricey-$11.00 per lb plus shipping and in addition, I know, and you all have confirmed, it's not really going to be what I think everyone expects it to be.

Thanks again for your thoughts
Peace....Love......Beer......

The Commune Brewing Company-Perfecting the craft of beer since 2010

Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Looking for some input please
« Reply #10 on: April 09, 2012, 02:41:46 PM »
What kind of honey can you get locally?  Not from the grocery store, but from a local beekeeper?  If you want to add honey I would go to a farmers market and get something there, a mild variety of some sort.

Or you can leave the honey out entirely - sub in sugar, add your honey malt, and some extract or fruit if you want.

Or leave that stuff out, take the OG up to 1.065 or so, cut the wheat to 10% and go 90% Maris Otter, mash at 152F, and add a bunch of simcoe and amarillo late.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline duboman

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Re: Looking for some input please
« Reply #11 on: April 09, 2012, 02:47:13 PM »
What kind of honey can you get locally?  Not from the grocery store, but from a local beekeeper?  If you want to add honey I would go to a farmers market and get something there, a mild variety of some sort.

Or you can leave the honey out entirely - sub in sugar, add your honey malt, and some extract or fruit if you want.

Or leave that stuff out, take the OG up to 1.065 or so, cut the wheat to 10% and go 90% Maris Otter, mash at 152F, and add a bunch of simcoe and amarillo late.

Locally I can get clover honey, I've used it before and at flame out I retained a bit of aroma that's it. I'm thinking I might add in some Honey Malt as people have told me it does a nice job imparting the honey flavor and then try the extract idea at bottling.  Do you think 4-6 oz is enough or should I go more? I don't mind if the OG goes up a bit.
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Looking for some input please
« Reply #12 on: April 09, 2012, 02:51:02 PM »
I'd go with the local stuff, the impact of that much honey in that beer will be minimal anyway.  I would also use 4 oz and see how it is.

Actually I'm lying, I would never do any of this because I would never make this beer.  This is what I think you should do to get what I think you want. ;)
Tom Schmidlin

Offline duboman

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Re: Looking for some input please
« Reply #13 on: April 09, 2012, 02:59:52 PM »
I'd go with the local stuff, the impact of that much honey in that beer will be minimal anyway.  I would also use 4 oz and see how it is.

Actually I'm lying, I would never do any of this because I would never make this beer.  This is what I think you should do to get what I think you want. ;)

Thanks for the honesty! Why would you not brew this, because it looks like it sucks or you just don't care for this type of beer in general. I'm not a huge fan either, honestly but my brewing buddy is (less knowledgeable than I ) and most of the neighbors (women) are kinda interested in it.

If it's really gonna suck, I'm not wasting my time :) I prefer my German Hefe and I'm working on a Belgian right now
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Looking for some input please
« Reply #14 on: April 09, 2012, 04:14:33 PM »
I just don't like this kind of beer.  I love a good weizen, but American hefeweizen is terrible, I've never had a good one.  I think the honey ones are even worse.  And the fruit ones are just an attempt to disguise the terrible flavor of the original.

But sometimes we brew to make others happy, so have at it. ;)
Tom Schmidlin