Author Topic: NA Beer  (Read 958 times)

Offline RevLeonidas

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NA Beer
« on: May 27, 2014, 11:44:19 AM »
For the next batch of beer, I am going to brew a "NA Beer." NA is in quotes because there is no way that a homebrewer can brew a batch of beer without at least a small amount of alcohol; so, I'm going to brew a batch of beer which should be <2% ABV.

Step one will be to brew and ferment a 5 gallon batch of Cream Ale; when fermentation is complete, the "baking" technique is how I plan to evaporate alcohol:
http://byo.com/low-alcohol-brewing/item/263-brew-a-great-non-alcoholic-beer

Before primary fermentation begins, one-half gallon of wort will be preserved for bottling; at bottling time, this wort will be pre-boiled for 15 minutes with 2 or 3 hop additions; this will be cooled to <70F then pitch 5 grams of ale yeast with cooled bottling wort.

Have any of you tried the BYO method? If so, what was the beer, and what were your results?

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Re: NA Beer
« Reply #1 on: May 27, 2014, 11:48:25 AM »
I have tried heating beer to remove or reduce alcohol.  IMO, it ruined the flavor.  The only way I can describe it is that it tasted "cooked".
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Offline dkfick

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Re: NA Beer
« Reply #2 on: May 27, 2014, 11:49:30 AM »
For the next batch of beer, I am going to brew a "NA Beer." NA is in quotes because there is no way that a homebrewer can brew a batch of beer without at least a small amount of alcohol; so, I'm going to brew a batch of beer which should be <2% ABV.

Step one will be to brew and ferment a 5 gallon batch of Cream Ale; when fermentation is complete, the "baking" technique is how I plan to evaporate alcohol:
http://byo.com/low-alcohol-brewing/item/263-brew-a-great-non-alcoholic-beer

Before primary fermentation begins, one-half gallon of wort will be preserved for bottling; at bottling time, this wort will be pre-boiled for 15 minutes with 2 or 3 hop additions; this will be cooled to <70F then pitch 5 grams of ale yeast with cooled bottling wort.

Have any of you tried the BYO method? If so, what was the beer, and what were your results?
How are you planning on preserving the 1/2 gallon of wort?  I would have botulism concerns with keeping the wort around in a sealed container.  If you process it in a pressure canner between 240F and 250F for 15 minutes then it's safe otherwise I personally wouldn't risk the unfermented wort sitting around for a couple weeks.
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Offline RevLeonidas

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Re: NA Beer
« Reply #3 on: May 27, 2014, 11:58:29 AM »
...DKFICK,
I've been doing this since 1992, so I've had my shares of trials and tribulations with saving wort for "starters" or bottling; it's pretty easy to sterilize and fill a couple of 1/2 gallon mason jars with wort without the fear of any infection; thanks for the heads-up.
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Offline Steve in TX

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Re: NA Beer
« Reply #4 on: May 27, 2014, 12:17:51 PM »
Fick is correct. It's not a spoiling infection, it's a death.

Clostridium spores persist past 212 degrees and in a low acid environment and they could spew their toxin all over your nice fresh wort. The toxin cannot be boiled out after it is made. Depending on how long you wait, it may be fine and safe, but I would just err on the cautious side and create a fresh batch of worth BIAB or mini-mash style.

BYO has an article detailing canning starter wort using a water bath method with a large disclaimer section detailing the risks.  http://byo.com/stories/item/434-canning-yeast-starters.

Personally, I think they should replace the article with a pressure canning article.

Offline dkfick

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Re: NA Beer
« Reply #5 on: May 27, 2014, 12:26:14 PM »
...DKFICK,
I've been doing this since 1992, so I've had my shares of trials and tribulations with saving wort for "starters" or bottling; it's pretty easy to sterilize and fill a couple of 1/2 gallon mason jars with wort without the fear of any infection; thanks for the heads-up.
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Yes, as Steve pointed out I didn't mean to imply your sanitation isn't good.  There are some botulism spores that could be in the wort (even if you boil it for an hour) and once they are in an environment like a sealed container with no air access and low acidity they could start to produce the toxin. 

I think if you keep them below 40F it also could prevent the production of the toxin as well. 

But I want to clarify that it's not a sanitation thing.  There could be botulism spores in your beer and you would be fine and it wouldn't spoil your beer.  The problem comes when those spores reproduce they create a toxin.  You need to take steps to make sure they cannot reproduce (be it kill the spores with 240-250F heat, keep the wort below 40F, or create an environment the botulism spores cannot reproduce it... ie create a bunch of alcohol in there)
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Offline RevLeonidas

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Re: NA Beer
« Reply #6 on: May 27, 2014, 05:02:40 PM »
...wow!, this is all interesting stuff about all the jive with botulism and other infections; I've canned starter made from DME or LME in the past, and never had any issues; however, that was wort made from extract, not a mash.

Since this beer is an experiment of sorts, a hoppy wort will be made using LME, saving wort to bottle has too much potential for failure. So far, this is what we'll brew:

6 lbs Maris Otter PM
2 lbs flaked corn
1.0 lb flaked rice
1.5 lb carapils
0.5 lb honey malt

~25 IBU
OG: ~1.052

Ferment until complete; transfer to a 5-gallon pot and bake at 175F for 20 minutes; cool and bottle with 1/2 gallon of ~1.050 OG hopped, wort cooled to <70F, and 5 grams of hydrated, dry ale yeast.


Offline RevLeonidas

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Re: NA Beer
« Reply #7 on: May 28, 2014, 05:41:35 PM »
...did a bit more digging around today of the subject of home brewed NA beer: conclusion is that it is not a good idea; I could not locate one source that said otherwise; so, I suppose it's just gonna be an ordinary cream ale.

Offline Thirsty_Monk

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Re: NA Beer
« Reply #8 on: May 28, 2014, 06:53:01 PM »
I would also not reconnect heating the beer. You loose your hops and flavor.

Think about it this from back end. What kind of FG you would like to have in final beer. What alcohol you want to have in it. Add those two together and you get FG of wort.

What do you think?


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Offline alestateyall

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Re: NA Beer
« Reply #9 on: May 28, 2014, 07:26:18 PM »

...did a bit more digging around today of the subject of home brewed NA beer: conclusion is that it is not a good idea; I could not locate one source that said otherwise; so, I suppose it's just gonna be an ordinary cream ale.

You probably know this, but just in case you don't, there are some beer styles with ABV below 3% with normal fermentation: 60 Schilling & Mild.

That's not below 2% but it's still pretty low.
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Offline RevLeonidas

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Re: NA Beer
« Reply #10 on: May 29, 2014, 10:15:05 AM »

You probably know this, but just in case you don't, there are some beer styles with ABV below 3% with normal fermentation: 60 Schilling & Mild.

That's not below 2% but it's still pretty low.

...thanks for the reminder about low-alcohol beers; that isn't the ideal, the ideal is to brew a beer that my Dad likes to drink; my dad really likes my beers, but he prefers non-alcoholic beers: not the good ones either.  :(
I want to brew something that my pa would like. When I was a kid in the 1970s, my dad drank "Oly," PBR, and cheapo beers like Buckhorn, Lucky Lager, or dead deer light.

Anyways.., I categorize all these beers as mostly light American lagers; however, a cream ale, or a blonde ale can have the same body with a similar slightly "fruity" ale flavor profile; this kind of beer wouldn't be ideal, but it will work.

Thanks again for the feedback!

Hoppy Zymology,
Rev. Leonidas

Offline dkfick

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Re: NA Beer
« Reply #11 on: May 29, 2014, 10:19:15 AM »

You probably know this, but just in case you don't, there are some beer styles with ABV below 3% with normal fermentation: 60 Schilling & Mild.

That's not below 2% but it's still pretty low.

...thanks for the reminder about low-alcohol beers; that isn't the ideal, the ideal is to brew a beer that my Dad likes to drink; my dad really likes my beers, but he prefers non-alcoholic beers: not the good ones either.  :(
I want to brew something that my pa would like. When I was a kid in the 1970s, my dad drank "Oly," PBR, and cheapo beers like Buckhorn, Lucky Lager, or dead deer light.

Anyways.., I categorize all these beers as mostly light American lagers; however, a cream ale, or a blonde ale can have the same body with a similar slightly "fruity" ale flavor profile; this kind of beer wouldn't be ideal, but it will work.

Thanks again for the feedback!

Hoppy Zymology,
Rev. Leonidas
One thing most NA beers have in common is that sweet unfermented flavor (at least in my experience).  Maybe try making a beer that has a really low OG.  Don't ferment it at all... But with this method you would need to keep it stored < 40F and I'm not sure how long it would last... but it's an option... Just mash, boil, chill, keg, carbonate. You would probably want something like an OG of 1.010?
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Offline alestateyall

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Re: NA Beer
« Reply #12 on: May 29, 2014, 02:41:42 PM »

You probably know this, but just in case you don't, there are some beer styles with ABV below 3% with normal fermentation: 60 Schilling & Mild.

That's not below 2% but it's still pretty low.

...thanks for the reminder about low-alcohol beers; that isn't the ideal, the ideal is to brew a beer that my Dad likes to drink; my dad really likes my beers, but he prefers non-alcoholic beers: not the good ones either.  :(
I want to brew something that my pa would like. When I was a kid in the 1970s, my dad drank "Oly," PBR, and cheapo beers like Buckhorn, Lucky Lager, or dead deer light.

Anyways.., I categorize all these beers as mostly light American lagers; however, a cream ale, or a blonde ale can have the same body with a similar slightly "fruity" ale flavor profile; this kind of beer wouldn't be ideal, but it will work.

Thanks again for the feedback!

Hoppy Zymology,
Rev. Leonidas

I totally understand your problem. I wish I could get my Dad to drink my beer.  He will try it, but, he is a whiskey guy. He drinks about 1 beer per year.

The beers you list that your father likes all seem to be category 1B. These have finish gravities from 1.004 to 1.010 according to the style. I think I would build a recipe that has a FG in that range but has an OG that leads will give you your target ABV.  ABV for a beer is approximately (OG-FG)*1.31.  I made a table with OG targets for given FG and ABV targets.  The apparent attenuation required for the OG/FG pair is in parenthesis.

2.0%2.5%3.0%
1.004 |1.019 (79%) |1.023 (83%) |1.027 (85%) |
1.010 |1.025 (60%) |1.029 (66%) |1.033 (70%) |

I think based on the table I would try to make a beer with 1.029 OG and ferment with a yeast that has 60-70% apparent attenuation.

If you are an all grain brewer I would make a Blonde Ale with OG 1.029. I would stick with American Ale yeast and I would mash high (around 158F).

This probably will be a somewhat watery beer. But then again that is what he is looking for  ;D

EDIT: The HTML table function looks OK on PC, but doesn't work well on iPhone.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2014, 02:47:41 PM by alestateyall »
Tommy M.
Starkville, MS

Offline morticaixavier

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Re: NA Beer
« Reply #13 on: May 29, 2014, 03:19:48 PM »
I don't think you will get only 60% AA with american ale yeast mashed at 158. not sure how you WOULD get that low attenuation numbers. maybe mash at 162 and add some maltodextrin to get your 1.029. not sure it would work though.
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Offline alestateyall

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Re: NA Beer
« Reply #14 on: May 29, 2014, 03:24:28 PM »
I don't think you will get only 60% AA with american ale yeast mashed at 158. not sure how you WOULD get that low attenuation numbers. maybe mash at 162 and add some maltodextrin to get your 1.029. not sure it would work though.
I wasn't sure about that. Maybe the OP needs to find a different yeast.
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