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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Recipes/Ingredients > Recipe Critique Please: Belgian Special Dark
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Old 08-23-2009, 12:26 AM   #1
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Default Recipe Critique Please: Belgian Special Dark

I’ve decided to jump in to a Belgian this weekend and want something high ABV. I’m aiming at 10% but the recipe I’ve formulated only comes out at 8.5 (according to the online calculator…which I’ve found faulty). Any advice would be greatly appreciated! Thanks guys.

OG: 1.087 FG: 1.022 ABV: 8.5

14 lbs Pilsner Malt
1 lbs Wheat Malt
.50 lbs Cara-Pils
.20 lbs Aromatic Malt
1 lbs Dark Belgian Candy Sugar
1 lbs Light Belgian Candy Sugar
1.75 oz Kent Goldings (60 min)
1.00 oz Saaz (5 min)
Blend of White Labs WLP570 Belgian Golden Ale and White Labs WLP500 Trappist Ale Yeast

I’m thinking a mash at 145F for an hour should be good and then a 60 or 90 minute boil to get some nice carmalization…how about you? Any advice?

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Old 08-23-2009, 02:00 AM   #2
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If you are going to mash at 145, you should probably go at least 90, or even 120 minutes to get complete conversion. Why 2 yeast strains? Also, bigger beers usually = lower efficiency. Finally, any time I use a pils base, its an automatic 90 minute boil.

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Old 08-24-2009, 04:10 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by s3n8 View Post
If you are going to mash at 145, you should probably go at least 90, or even 120 minutes to get complete conversion. Why 2 yeast strains? Also, bigger beers usually = lower efficiency. Finally, any time I use a pils base, its an automatic 90 minute boil.
90 minutes mash sounds like a goiod idea, I'll do that. The two yeast strains was what was suggested on the base recipe and the more I look into it it seems like a good idea for this. I'm going to start out at around 67F for a day or two and then bring it up to around 70-72F for the rest of the fermentation.

Would you suggest against doing a yeast blend? I'm going to pick up the supplies tomarrow, so say ya or nay fast or forever hold your peace :lol:
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Old 08-24-2009, 04:56 PM   #4
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Looks pretty good to me, but how dark is it gonna be? I imagine the dark candi sugar will at least make it amber-ish, but I'm not sure past that. I think most Belgian strong darks have some very dark crystal malt in them, such as 120 or special B. I also think you would be fine without the cara-pils, as the body should be alright with a large grain bill like this.

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Old 08-24-2009, 05:42 PM   #5
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If your trying to make a dark strong, 1lb of dark candy syrup is not going to make it dark. I would add some special b in there to darken it up. I would also probably use 2lbs of the dark candi, since the light candi is pretty much just plain sugar.

If you didn't get the ingredients yet, you can probably save yourself about $10 if you make the candy sugar yourself. Its pretty easy. I've done it before using the directions in this thread and it came out awesome.

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Old 08-24-2009, 05:54 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greenbirds View Post
Looks pretty good to me, but how dark is it gonna be? I imagine the dark candi sugar will at least make it amber-ish, but I'm not sure past that. I think most Belgian strong darks have some very dark crystal malt in them, such as 120 or special B. I also think you would be fine without the cara-pils, as the body should be alright with a large grain bill like this.
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If your trying to make a dark strong, 1lb of dark candy syrup is not going to make it dark. I would add some special b in there to darken it up. I would also probably use 2lbs of the dark candi, since the light candi is pretty much just plain sugar.

If you didn't get the ingredients yet, you can probably save yourself about $10 if you make the candy sugar yourself. Its pretty easy. I've done it before using the directions in this thread and it came out awesome.
I already have a pound of the dark and for convienance I'll just go and buy another pound. Anything more and I'd make it myself, thanks fo rthe reminder on that So, I'll substatute the light for the dark candie.

I have access to Special B (140L), how much should I use? A pound?
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Old 08-24-2009, 09:30 PM   #7
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a full pound might be a little much. Last dark strong i make i think i used 6-8oz. Somewhere in that range. The color came out a very dark reddish/amber color.

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Old 08-24-2009, 10:47 PM   #8
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Holy crap, this is gonna be an expensive brew! The liquid candi sugar is like $10 a bottle at my hbs. I would not spring for 2 of them, also, the flavor imparted by them is pretty substantial. I think 2 bottles of D2 would be a molasses bomb. I would use a lb of cane or corn sugar and a bottle of d2 in separate feedings as the yeast slow down. This should dry it out like a proper Belgian. Also, 2 packs of yeast seems excessive to me. Make a liter starter and save yourself $8. I agree that a Belgian dark needs some Special B (8oz plenty), and I would leave the carapils especially with 2lbs of sugar.

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Old 08-24-2009, 11:07 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by s3n8 View Post
Holy crap, this is gonna be an expensive brew! The liquid candi sugar is like $10 a bottle at my hbs. I would not spring for 2 of them, also, the flavor imparted by them is pretty substantial. I think 2 bottles of D2 would be a molasses bomb. I would use a lb of cane or corn sugar and a bottle of d2 in separate feedings as the yeast slow down. This should dry it out like a proper Belgian. Also, 2 packs of yeast seems excessive to me. Make a liter starter and save yourself $8. I agree that a Belgian dark needs some Special B (8oz plenty), and I would leave the carapils especially with 2lbs of sugar.
I'm using the dried sugar, not the canned. I also already have a pound (got for free), so buying another isn't going to be expensive.
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Old 08-24-2009, 11:13 PM   #10
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The candi syrup tastes nothing like molasses, and it's not expensive if you make it yourself!

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