Author Topic: Help me pimp my brown ale  (Read 530 times)

Offline rgonzalez_me

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Help me pimp my brown ale
« on: March 23, 2015, 09:01:55 PM »
Hello, this is the grain bill for a Belgian brown ale that I'll be brewing pretty soon. I know that it will be pretty basic for the style. What can I add to make it stand out? Any suggestions?


10lbs. pale malt
0.5 lb. dark caramel malt (90° Lovibond)
0.5 lb. Special B malt
0.25 lb. kilncoffee
4 AAU Styrian Goldings hops (1.33 oz. at 3% alpha acid)
4 AAU Saaz hops (1 oz. at 4% alpha acid)
White Labs WLP530

BTW the apricot ale that you guys helped me with not so long ago got a 35 in competition.
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Offline euge

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Re: Help me pimp my brown ale
« Reply #1 on: March 23, 2015, 10:39:57 PM »
Oh you need something like a D2 syrup.
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Offline erockrph

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Re: Help me pimp my brown ale
« Reply #2 on: March 23, 2015, 10:45:49 PM »
I've really grown fond of D-45 (Amber) Candi Syrup in certain Belgian styles. It adds a nice light toffee note, while helping get that dry finish that you want in a Belgian beer. I'd probably swap a pound of the base malt and one of the caramel malts for a pound of the D45.

Also, I think at least half of the base malt for any Belgian style should be a good quality continental Pilsner malt. Its just part of the flavor profile I expect in a Belgian beer.
Eric B.

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Offline rgonzalez_me

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Re: Help me pimp my brown ale
« Reply #3 on: March 23, 2015, 11:11:44 PM »
Thanks guys..... Ok let's say that I don't change my grain bill, how much of either syrup should I add and when?
“Beer makes you feel the way you ought to feel without beer”  -Henry Lawson

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Primary: Saison
Primary: Paters Bier - Saison du Vin
Bottled: Chocolate-mocha peanut butter stout

Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Help me pimp my brown ale
« Reply #4 on: March 23, 2015, 11:19:23 PM »
I add ~ 15% D180 or D2 to Dubbel or quad. If you're wanting a deep brown color with dark fruit character, these are better. As Eric said, D45 for amber color and more toffee character.
Jon H.

Offline rgonzalez_me

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Re: Help me pimp my brown ale
« Reply #5 on: March 23, 2015, 11:36:05 PM »
I add ~ 15% D180 or D2 to Dubbel or quad. If you're wanting a deep brown color with dark fruit character, these are better. As Eric said, D45 for amber color and more toffee character.

15%? Would that be a little over pound and a half?
“Beer makes you feel the way you ought to feel without beer”  -Henry Lawson

Keg #1: DD Pilsner
Keg #2: Sauvin-Mango-Hibiscus Ale
Primary: Saison
Primary: Paters Bier - Saison du Vin
Bottled: Chocolate-mocha peanut butter stout

Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Help me pimp my brown ale
« Reply #6 on: March 23, 2015, 11:41:11 PM »
I add ~ 15% D180 or D2 to Dubbel or quad. If you're wanting a deep brown color with dark fruit character, these are better. As Eric said, D45 for amber color and more toffee character.

15%? Would that be a little over pound and a half?

It's in relationship to what you set as your target OG.  A dubbel at 1.070 OG would use less D180 than a quad at 1.100 OG, with each using 15%.  Software like Beersmith, ProMash, or Brewer's Friend will help you calculate it pretty easily.
Jon H.

Offline rgonzalez_me

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Re: Help me pimp my brown ale
« Reply #7 on: March 24, 2015, 09:57:10 PM »
Ok, so lets say that I change my 10 Lbs of Belgian Pale Ale malt for 10 Lbs of Continental Pilsner Malt and add the D-180 syrup.....

What other add-ons would be awesome? any spices?

“Beer makes you feel the way you ought to feel without beer”  -Henry Lawson

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Keg #2: Sauvin-Mango-Hibiscus Ale
Primary: Saison
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Bottled: Chocolate-mocha peanut butter stout

Offline euge

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Re: Help me pimp my brown ale
« Reply #8 on: March 24, 2015, 10:06:04 PM »
Spices...? In a Belgian brown ale. My preference is no, but if you want to get freaky use some bitter orange peel and perhaps a cacao nib or a dried chile pepper.
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Laws are spider-webs, which catch the little flies, but cannot hold the big ones. -Anacharsis

Offline rgonzalez_me

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Re: Help me pimp my brown ale
« Reply #9 on: March 25, 2015, 12:36:05 AM »
Ok, cool!

about fermentation I am thinking about pitching at the lower end of WLP530 (66F) and let it ride all the way up to 70sF in 5 days.

Hows that sound? too hot?

I just want this one to be great. Thanks everyone!
“Beer makes you feel the way you ought to feel without beer”  -Henry Lawson

Keg #1: DD Pilsner
Keg #2: Sauvin-Mango-Hibiscus Ale
Primary: Saison
Primary: Paters Bier - Saison du Vin
Bottled: Chocolate-mocha peanut butter stout

Offline mchrispen

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Re: Help me pimp my brown ale
« Reply #10 on: March 25, 2015, 12:43:10 AM »
If you can hold the lower fermentation temps for a few days and then let it ride up - you should get fewer fusels to age out.

Judged NHC regionals here in Austin - and there were several BSDs that were like rocket fuel.

Offline rgonzalez_me

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Re: Help me pimp my brown ale
« Reply #11 on: March 25, 2015, 02:17:09 AM »
If you can hold the lower fermentation temps for a few days and then let it ride up - you should get fewer fusels to age out.

Judged NHC regionals here in Austin - and there were several BSDs that were like rocket fuel.

I did some further reading and this seems to be the norm.
“Beer makes you feel the way you ought to feel without beer”  -Henry Lawson

Keg #1: DD Pilsner
Keg #2: Sauvin-Mango-Hibiscus Ale
Primary: Saison
Primary: Paters Bier - Saison du Vin
Bottled: Chocolate-mocha peanut butter stout