Author Topic: Using Lactose in RIS  (Read 751 times)

Offline kdziok

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Using Lactose in RIS
« on: April 06, 2014, 08:38:44 AM »
Hi all! I was thinking about adding lactose to my RIS to add some roundness to the body and a touch of sweetness but didn't want to overdo it. The beer itself has been aging on bourbon and oak cubes for the past 6 months and I'm getting ready to bottle soon but feel it's a little on the dry end. I know it's all relative to people's perception of sweet but I guess I'm just looking for a good rule of thumb or suggestions when making additions. Thanks!!

Offline dmtaylor

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Re: Using Lactose in RIS
« Reply #1 on: April 06, 2014, 09:07:22 AM »
0.5 to 0.75 lb lactose per 5 gallons will help round things out.  Do not use any more than that or your beer will be sickly sweet.  Cheers!
Dave

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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Using Lactose in RIS
« Reply #2 on: April 06, 2014, 11:28:41 AM »
What was your OG, FG, and IBUs?  I don't think I'd add lactose to it, but it's your beer.  Keep in mind though, you are drinking it warm and flat, it will taste different cold and carbonated.  I would pull a sample to chill and carb before doing anything.

Also, I don't agree that more lactose will make it sickly sweet, to me even pure lactose isn't sickly sweet.  I regularly use ~1 lb / 5 gallons in my sweet stout and that is not sickly sweet either.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline majorvices

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Re: Using Lactose in RIS
« Reply #3 on: April 06, 2014, 01:32:37 PM »
Maybe different tastes buds - I do not like milk stouts. To me they are too "sickly sweet"! Macsons XX? Blech! Hate that stuff! I've had a few I found tolerable but not any that I have really enjoyed.

Wether or not you need to add it to your RIS may be a different story if you feel it is too dry. What was the FG?
Keith Y.

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Offline dmtaylor

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Re: Using Lactose in RIS
« Reply #4 on: April 06, 2014, 02:43:51 PM »
What was the FG?

The million dollar question!  :)
Dave

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Online mabrungard

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Re: Using Lactose in RIS
« Reply #5 on: April 06, 2014, 02:54:36 PM »
I'm with Tom on this issue. If the RIS was properly done, it shouldnt need an accessory like lactose. If anything, it should be needing some more attenuation. If it needs more sweetness, add malt!
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Online HoosierBrew

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Re: Using Lactose in RIS
« Reply #6 on: April 06, 2014, 03:11:52 PM »
Man, I wouldn't think a beer as big as RIS would need it, disregarding flavor altogether. Getting a low enough (drinkable enough) FG is usually the key with a big beer, not adding more body. I wouldn't want that many more unfermentables in mine.
Jon H.

Offline klickitat jim

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Re: Using Lactose in RIS
« Reply #7 on: April 06, 2014, 03:41:31 PM »
I caught myself thinking about what the guidelines call for... I'm not certain he wants it to be in style though. Lets assume he wants to add lactose, for whatever reason, post fermentation. I'd be very curious how to do that without oxidizing the beer or getting clumps of lactose. Would you dissolve it like bottling sugar and gently stir in?

Personally I would be fairly happy with a dryish RIS, but I don't think that is the point. Lets say for example it was a Sweet Stout that was too dry. How would you add lactose downstream?

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Re: Using Lactose in RIS
« Reply #8 on: April 06, 2014, 03:54:41 PM »
I caught myself thinking about what the guidelines call for... I'm not certain he wants it to be in style though. Lets assume he wants to add lactose, for whatever reason, post fermentation. I'd be very curious how to do that without oxidizing the beer or getting clumps of lactose. Would you dissolve it like bottling sugar and gently stir in?

Personally I would be fairly happy with a dryish RIS, but I don't think that is the point. Lets say for example it was a Sweet Stout that was too dry. How would you add lactose downstream?

Well, the yeast can't ferment it regardless of when it's added, but just for convenience I've added it at the end of the boil.
Jon H.

Offline dmtaylor

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Re: Using Lactose in RIS
« Reply #9 on: April 06, 2014, 04:06:18 PM »
The OP's beer is already fermented and ready to bottle or keg.  You add the lactose just like priming sugar, and you can boil it WITH the priming sugar if bottling -- boil it up in a couple of cups of water, cool, and add it in.

I wouldn't discourage the OP from adding lactose if he wants to -- it's HIS beer!  Let him do what makes him happy!  (Or her, as the case might be in about 0.1% of cases.  ;) )
Dave

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Offline klickitat jim

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Re: Using Lactose in RIS
« Reply #10 on: April 06, 2014, 04:50:33 PM »
That crossed my mind, but based on the avatar I assumed boy. But I should be more open minded probably

Offline kdziok

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Re: Using Lactose in RIS
« Reply #11 on: April 06, 2014, 08:33:11 PM »
Wow thanks for all the responses! To answer the big question, my OG was 1.089, FG came in at 1.030, and IBU's were a little short at 36 . This is only my second attempt on this recipe (which was wayyyyy better than the first attempt!) but was still missing a little something. The beer is definitely tasty as is but I personally like a touch of sweetness to big stouts (which this batch was still missing a bit) so i thought about experimenting with the lactose. My end goal with this recipe is to not have to use it but for now I think it's as good a time as any to give something different a try. Think I'll give it a whirl with 0.5 lbs and see what happens. Thanks again everyone!

Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Using Lactose in RIS
« Reply #12 on: April 07, 2014, 01:20:50 AM »
You've got about 65% AA and you think it is too dry?   That's unusual. :)

Did you have a large portion of dark malts that might be making it taste drier than the FG would indicate?  Is it astringency?  Did you use a LOT of bourbon with the oak cubes, or a lot of cubes?  Maybe it's oak tannin?

I still wouldn't add lactose, if it is from the bourbon or oak it will age out.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline majorvices

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Re: Using Lactose in RIS
« Reply #13 on: April 07, 2014, 04:26:15 AM »
I honestly can't believe this beer is too dry with that low apparent attenuation. You should go ahead and bottle or keg it without the lactose.

If there is "something missing" you might want to post the recipe so we can look at it. But 1.030 finishing gravity for a RIS is certainly not too dry. You should have plenty of body and perceived "ssweetness" at that FG.
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Offline jeffy

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Re: Using Lactose in RIS
« Reply #14 on: April 07, 2014, 04:33:03 AM »
Perhaps the final gravity is high and the perception is dry because he used an uncorrected reading from a refractometer?
It seems to be a common mistake with new users.
Jeff Gladish, Tampa (989.3, 175.1 Apparent Rennarian)
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