Author Topic: Suggestions on Belgian Dark Strong?  (Read 2999 times)

Offline denny

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Re: Suggestions on Belgian Dark Strong?
« Reply #45 on: October 17, 2015, 05:44:01 PM »
Definitely not as an alternative.  Completely different.

Good to know. I've been really liking the D45 lately but have used the D90 and D180 as well. Was just curious about people's experience with Turbinado and Muscovado as well.


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I used Turbinado along with D180 in quad recipe and they made a great combo.
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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Suggestions on Belgian Dark Strong?
« Reply #46 on: October 17, 2015, 05:52:39 PM »
As far as BDSA goes, I believe you absolutely cannot do better than Herman Holtrop's recipe.  He's i a Dutch homebrew club that toured Rochefort, then had a comp to come up with a recipe.  Brewed correctly, it's almost indistinguishable from Rochefort.  http://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthread.php?t=158933

Yeah, it's a favorite of mine. Really good.
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Re: Suggestions on Belgian Dark Strong?
« Reply #47 on: October 17, 2015, 07:25:24 PM »

I used Turbinado along with D180 in quad recipe and they made a great combo.

Have you brewed any of the CSI recipes? I've had pretty good results with the Westmalle and Chimay recipes.


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Offline brewinhard

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Re: Suggestions on Belgian Dark Strong?
« Reply #48 on: October 17, 2015, 09:34:20 PM »
I have wondered about all of those on their website.  Have yet to brew any though. 

Offline heavydeadlifts

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Re: Suggestions on Belgian Dark Strong?
« Reply #49 on: October 17, 2015, 09:35:30 PM »
Slightly off topic, but has anyone tried a bourbon barrel aged Belgian dark strong?

I ask because my belg dark strong is just about done fermenting and at 12%abv. I have a RIS in my bourbon barrel now and will likely take it out in a week....I'm thinking the Belgian dark strong would do well with some bourbon and oak notes
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Re: Suggestions on Belgian Dark Strong?
« Reply #50 on: October 17, 2015, 10:56:07 PM »

I have wondered about all of those on their website.  Have yet to brew any though.

I definitely use their site as a resource.


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Offline reverseapachemaster

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Re: Suggestions on Belgian Dark Strong?
« Reply #51 on: October 18, 2015, 03:31:15 PM »
Slightly off topic, but has anyone tried a bourbon barrel aged Belgian dark strong?

I ask because my belg dark strong is just about done fermenting and at 12%abv. I have a RIS in my bourbon barrel now and will likely take it out in a week....I'm thinking the Belgian dark strong would do well with some bourbon and oak notes

I have not done it but I have tasted several. It works well as long as the bourbon doesn't overwhelm the beer. In a stout you have that roast and bitterness counterbalancing against the sweetness of the bourbon and big flavors versus the bourbon. In a BDSA you have more nuanced flavor and less contrast from the bourbon. Most of the commercial examples I've had spent too much time in the barrels and picked up too much bourbon.
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Offline JJeffers09

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Re: Suggestions on Belgian Dark Strong?
« Reply #52 on: October 18, 2015, 04:43:11 PM »
And this kind of conversation about Belgian Dark Strong Ale is what its all about.  My first impression of BDSA was a beer that was a kitchen sink recipe.  That is where I get the array of specialty and mixtures of base in the OP. 

Thanks for all the help and suggestions guys.  Trial and error and I will get it right.

So the K.I.S.S. process and try to dumb it down.  I feel like the examples I have had seem so much more complex in flavor, and that is why theses forums are a must for me.  Awesome responses and information guys. 

As for the Special B Malt.  I do love Special B Malt in small quantities.  I have used it under 3.5% in now 3 recipes of my own, still awaiting the final product on 2.  And I will see what I make of this BDSA.  My beers, and my buddies beers, have always leaned closer to the raisin bread or rum-raisin smooth crystallized sugar notes.  Rather than the chewy rich toffee flavor it can be.
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Re: Suggestions on Belgian Dark Strong?
« Reply #53 on: October 18, 2015, 05:10:22 PM »

As for the Special B Malt.  I do love Special B Malt in small quantities.  I have used it under 3.5% in now 3 recipes of my own, still awaiting the final product on 2.  And I will see what I make of this BDSA.  My beers, and my buddies beers, have always leaned closer to the raisin bread or rum-raisin smooth crystallized sugar notes.  Rather than the chewy rich toffee flavor it can be.

I'm thinking that not only may I be an outlier, but that a reevaluation is in order. I used it a handful of times and it could just be that my LHBS had an old bag.

I'll be trying it again in my next BDSA as well as the Belgian Mild I have planned.


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Offline denny

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Re: Suggestions on Belgian Dark Strong?
« Reply #54 on: October 18, 2015, 05:19:41 PM »

I used Turbinado along with D180 in quad recipe and they made a great combo.

Have you brewed any of the CSI recipes? I've had pretty good results with the Westmalle and Chimay recipes.


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Re: Suggestions on Belgian Dark Strong?
« Reply #55 on: October 18, 2015, 05:47:19 PM »


I used Turbinado along with D180 in quad recipe and they made a great combo.

Have you brewed any of the CSI recipes? I've had pretty good results with the Westmalle and Chimay recipes.


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Not only have I brewed some of them, but some of them are MY recipes!

Very true! Your 400th Quad and Westcoastmalle are in my Onedrive brewing folder!


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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Suggestions on Belgian Dark Strong?
« Reply #56 on: October 18, 2015, 06:21:42 PM »
I've brewed both those - very good recipes !
Jon H.

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Re: Suggestions on Belgian Dark Strong?
« Reply #57 on: October 18, 2015, 08:13:55 PM »
I'll say for posterities sake that I like to use a small amount of Aromatic in my Dubbel and BDSA recipes as well.


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Offline svejk

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Re: Suggestions on Belgian Dark Strong?
« Reply #58 on: October 19, 2015, 04:35:34 PM »
In discussing Belgian Dark Strong Ales and whether Special B, CaraMunich or other dark caramel/crystal malts are appropriate in the grist, I think it is important to distinguish which type of BDS you prefer.  I'm actually surprised that both Rochefort 8 & 10 are in the same BJCP category as Westvleteren 12 & St Bernardus. Tasted side by side, these beers are significantly different and perhaps in a future style guideline they should really be separated into different categories.  The Rochefort style of BDS appears to me to have fairly significant flavor contributions from specialty malts like Special B, while Westy and St Bernardus appear to have little to none.

I strongly prefer the Westy/St Bernardus style of BDS and so far my best attempts at replicating this style of BDS have eliminated specialty malts entirely.  That said, I don't think my beers would score well in a BJCP competition because judges would likely be looking for the flavor contributions found in Rochefort style BDS recipes.  From a drinking perspective, however, I find the BDS recipes with specialty malts to be okay for a few sips but I quickly grow tired of them, while I find the non-specialty malt recipes to be much more drinkable over the entire drinking session.

Offline denny

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Re: Suggestions on Belgian Dark Strong?
« Reply #59 on: October 19, 2015, 04:40:00 PM »
I've brewed both those - very good recipes !

Thank you!
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