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Old 02-16-2013, 02:33 AM   #1
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Default Cream ale recipe

My dad and uncle (2 different people, for the record) are both big fans of cream ale. I can't stand the style, myself, but I'd love to brew up a batch of it for them. Since cream ales aren't my bag, I figured I should run the recipe past you fine folks to make sure I'm on the right track.

7# pilsener malt
2# flaked corn
4oz biscuit malt
1oz Saaz FWH
1oz Saaz at flameout
White Labs Cream Ale Blend (WL080)
75 minute mash @ 148, 60 minute boil

Is there anything essential that I'm missing, or will this produce a decent beer?

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Old 02-16-2013, 03:00 AM   #2
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You'll want to up the FWH to at least 2.5 - 3 oz to make it more to style. Otherwise it will be way to sweet to drink.

Cream Ales are malty but not *that* malty.

What may help is to input the recipe into brewing software and look at the BU:GU balance ratio.

That is bittering units divided by original gravity. When this ratio is below 0.5 the beer leans to malty sweet. When it is around 0.5 the beer is more balanced and when it is over 0.5 the beer lean to the bitter side of things.

Your current recipe is about 9 IBU Tinseth. Which is a ratio of about 0.2. I'm sure your Dad and Uncle won't want to drink something that sweet.

I'd try to keep it at least around 0.5 (and maybe above 0.45).

The yeast you've chosen will really leave your beer malty sweet, which is ok if you don't mind that style but you may consider choosing a more attenuative yeast.

Again, just my humble opinion.

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Old 02-16-2013, 03:10 AM   #3
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That seems to be fairly close to my cream ale recipe!

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f66/ag-cream-ale-33242/

You probably want about 10-20 IBUs, with little hop aroma and/or flavor in the finished beer, so I'd reduce the late addition to .5 ounce.

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Old 02-16-2013, 12:53 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheLastDamnBatch View Post
Your current recipe is about 9 IBU Tinseth. Which is a ratio of about 0.2. I'm sure your Dad and Uncle won't want to drink something that sweet.
I get 16.9 IBU Tinseth by Beersmith's calculations. Granted, that may still be a little low, particularly since it's FWH; I'll try bumping it up about a 1/4 oz or so (21.2IBU, 0.47 ratio). That's assuming a 4%AA Saaz, so if the actual AA is lower when I buy the hops, I'll adjust upward.

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Originally Posted by TheLastDamnBatch View Post
The yeast you've chosen will really leave your beer malty sweet, which is ok if you don't mind that style but you may consider choosing a more attenuative yeast.
The listed attenuation is 75-80%, which is pretty high. Does it not actually hit that in practical application?


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That seems to be fairly close to my cream ale recipe!
Hmm. Now I'm wondering if I should add a little carapils to mine. Does the flaked corn impact head retention at all?
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Old 02-16-2013, 12:58 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by beertroll View Post
I get 16.9 IBU Tinseth by Beersmith's calculations. Granted, that may still be a little low, particularly since it's FWH; I'll try bumping it up about a 1/4 oz or so (21.2IBU, 0.47 ratio). That's assuming a 4%AA Saaz, so if the actual AA is lower when I buy the hops, I'll adjust upward.



The listed attenuation is 75-80%, which is pretty high. Does it not actually hit that in practical application?




Hmm. Now I'm wondering if I should add a little carapils to mine. Does the flaked corn impact head retention at all?
Your IBUs are fine at 16/17 or so. You should easily get 80% attenuation with a cooler mash temp, and that grain bill.

I like a little carapils in lighter beers, otherwise I almost never use it. You don't need it, probably, but when I make a light beer (even pilsners) I tend to use carapils to help with foam and head retention a bit.
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Old 02-16-2013, 01:10 PM   #6
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Quote:
I get 16.9 IBU Tinseth by Beersmith's calculations. Granted, that may still be a little low, particularly since it's FWH; I'll try bumping it up about a 1/4 oz or so (21.2IBU, 0.47 ratio). That's assuming a 4%AA Saaz, so if the actual AA is lower when I buy the hops, I'll adjust upward.
Brewers Friend lists it as 9 tinseth for your current recipe (may be with 3.5%AA Saaz).

Quote:
The listed attenuation is 75-80%, which is pretty high. Does it not actually hit that in practical application?
My experience has been that it doesn't seem to dry out the beer as much as it could. YMMV.
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