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Old 12-13-2010, 02:19 PM   #1
jpm5171988
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Default Adding lactose to your beer?

I brewed my first cream ale last weekend, which is currently in primary. As the primary was (is) winding down, I decided to sample a small amount of the beer. The beer is good, but its a little bit bitter for my taste. I was thinking that I could could counteract some of the bitterness by slightly sweetening the beer. I have never used lactose before but as I understand it, lactose is non-fermentable and would be the best addition for what I am trying to accomplish. How much lactose would I need to add to a 5-gallon batch to slightly sweeten the beer? I don't want it to be overly sweet; when tasting the beer it would be nice to first taste a very slight sweetness followed by the crisp bitterness of the hops. And in my case, when would be the best time to add lactose...should it be added when I tranfer to secondary or should it be added when I bottle the beer? And whats the best method...should I add the lactose straight or disolve it in a small amount of water first?

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Old 12-13-2010, 02:22 PM   #2
RugenBrau
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I would leave it alone.....your beer is still green. You won't know what it is going to taste like until after it has been bottled for three weeks. By anychance is it a NB extract kit. If I recall that one is 31 IBU's which is a lot for a cream ale so it will taste bitter right now. RELAX

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Old 12-13-2010, 02:35 PM   #3
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No, its an all grain recipe i came up with. The IBU rating is just over 15, which is on the lower end of the cream ale scale. It is still more bitter than I would prefer though. I know the beer is still young, but from my experience, bottle conditioning brings out the hops flavors/bitterness even more. Hopefully it will mellow out.

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Old 12-13-2010, 03:23 PM   #4
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I wouldn't add any lactose but to answer your question you can add it at bottling. Make a simple syrup with it just like you do with priming sugar, actually you can add it with the priming sugar. As for how much, it really depends on the beer, I'd add 4oz to start and then taste it.

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