Author Topic: Low ABV Brew  (Read 2057 times)

Offline flbrewer

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Low ABV Brew
« on: December 29, 2015, 07:26:52 PM »
I've been kicking around the idea of brewing something low in alcohol lately (4% or lower) that isn't a sour. I figured it'd be easier to rip through a keg by myself if it tasted good!

Has anyone brewed something recently that fits the bill and turned out well?

Offline Wort-H.O.G.

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Re: Low ABV Brew
« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2015, 07:29:52 PM »
wide open-you can pick just about anything you like and brew it low abv. Ive done it with pale ales, pils, amber ale, etc.

depends what you feel like!
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Offline flbrewer

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Re: Low ABV Brew
« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2015, 07:31:51 PM »

depends what you feel like!

Beers that don't suck  ;D

Offline Wort-H.O.G.

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Re: Low ABV Brew
« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2015, 07:32:46 PM »

depends what you feel like!

Beers that don't suck  ;D

precisely...pick a beer style you enjoy and drop the grist to desired abv.

edit: if it sucks.....well, blame the brewer  ;D
« Last Edit: December 29, 2015, 07:36:05 PM by Wort-H.O.G. »
Ken- Chagrin Falls, OH
CPT, U.S.Army
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Harveys-Brewhaus/405092862905115

http://braukaiser.com/wiki/index.php?title=The_Science_of_Mashing

Serving:        In Process:
Vienna IPA          O'Fest
Dort
Mead                 
Cider                         
Ger'merican Blonde
Amber Ale
Next:
Ger Pils
O'Fest

Offline Stevie

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Re: Low ABV Brew
« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2015, 07:39:39 PM »
Mash high and use a flavorful base malt.

Look into small Scottish beers.

Offline brewinhard

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Re: Low ABV Brew
« Reply #5 on: December 29, 2015, 07:41:59 PM »
Special bitters are great for this as is a low gravity saison (think around 1.045 starting gravity).

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Re: Low ABV Brew
« Reply #6 on: December 29, 2015, 08:03:45 PM »
I've been kicking around the idea of brewing something low in alcohol lately (4% or lower) that isn't a sour. I figured it'd be easier to rip through a keg by myself if it tasted good!

Has anyone brewed something recently that fits the bill and turned out well?

Still working on my 4-4.5% American mild recipe.  First 3 tries tasted like water.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

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Offline pete b

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Re: Low ABV Brew
« Reply #7 on: December 29, 2015, 08:24:29 PM »
I made what I called a New England Bitter this past fall. It was 80% Pale Malt and 20% Munich. IIRC it was about 4% and malty. IMO don't try this with an IPA/APA. Hoppiness is anathema to a sessionable beer.
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Offline dilluh98

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Re: Low ABV Brew
« Reply #8 on: December 29, 2015, 08:29:27 PM »
I've been kicking around the idea of brewing something low in alcohol lately (4% or lower) that isn't a sour. I figured it'd be easier to rip through a keg by myself if it tasted good!

Has anyone brewed something recently that fits the bill and turned out well?

Still working on my 4-4.5% American mild recipe.  First 3 tries tasted like water.

English Mild comes to mind. I've tried many recipes but this one floats my boat the best out of all of them:

1.036 OG

80% MO
16.5% C-60 (or English medium crystal)
3.5% Chocolate Malt

12 IBU Fuggles @ 45 min
6 IBU Fuggles @ 15 min

- Mash high (156-158 F).
- If you can, use no sparge method or BIAB - I feel like it makes a fuller beer.
- Use an English yeast that's going to give you plenty of esters - ferment in the mid to high range of temps. I like WLP007 these days but WLP002 is a good choice, too.
- Drink it plenty young and don't over-carbonate it (2.0 vol CO2 or even less).
- Get the mash pH around 5.4-5.5.
- This should get you a low alcohol beer that has more flavor and mouthfeel than you'd expect from a 3.5% beer.

I recently made a trans-atlantic mild with english malts (similar to recipe above) and Denny's Favorite 50 (WY1450). Should be ready to drink in the next week. Looking forward to it as from what people say, 1450 accentuates malt character nicely.

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Re: Low ABV Brew
« Reply #9 on: December 29, 2015, 08:36:31 PM »
I'm sure that's a great beer, but my goal is to make an American mild without British ingredients.  That's the challenge part....

FWIW I've mashed as high as 163 without making an appreciable difference in body or flavor.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

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Offline dilluh98

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Re: Low ABV Brew
« Reply #10 on: December 29, 2015, 08:42:02 PM »
I'm sure that's a great beer, but my goal is to make an American mild without British ingredients.  That's the challenge part....

FWIW I've mashed as high as 163 without making an appreciable difference in body or flavor.

Interesting. Do you think a 148F mash beer and a 160F mash beer would be indistinguishable?

Offline dilluh98

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Re: Low ABV Brew
« Reply #11 on: December 29, 2015, 08:43:58 PM »
I'm sure that's a great beer, but my goal is to make an American mild without British ingredients.  That's the challenge part....

FWIW I've mashed as high as 163 without making an appreciable difference in body or flavor.

Also, I agree... I don't think there are many options for flavorful American base malts.

Offline troybinso

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Re: Low ABV Brew
« Reply #12 on: December 29, 2015, 09:08:37 PM »
I've been working on session beers too. I have an English bitter, an I.S.A. and a Saison that are all pretty darn tasty and right around 4%.

Offline kmccaf

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Re: Low ABV Brew
« Reply #13 on: December 29, 2015, 09:26:07 PM »
How about a Gratzer? 100% Oak smoked wheat malt. Then using you favorite noble, or noblish hop, bitter with 1 oz at 60 min, 2 oz at 15, and 3 oz at flameout. Ferment with 1007 German ale. My OG is usually between 1.036 and 1.044.
Kyle M.

Offline klickitat jim

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Re: Low ABV Brew
« Reply #14 on: December 29, 2015, 09:27:23 PM »
I'm brewing a dry stout that came out of the kettle at 1.040. Is that low enough? I haven't tasted the finished product yet but in my imagination it doesn't suck.