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Old 11-27-2010, 06:51 AM   #1
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Default Watering my beer down...

...Not another word, okay? Not. Another. Word.

Seriously tho. I brewed a brown ale that went all sorts of haywire. It was one of those brew days when almost everything conceivable that could go wrong, did go wrong. The recipe - this one here, as a matter of fact - had a target OG of 1.056, and I ended up with 1.063. My FG was supposed to be around 1.012, but it ended up at... 1.020. The beer's way too sweet, and the mouthfeel is like maple syrup compared to what it should be.

So. Is it possible (well, I know it's possible... I guess is it acceptable) to pull some beer off, and add some boiled RO water to the keg to drop the FG down? and what can I expect (other than watery beer) if I do this? I'm willing to gamble, because at the moment, the beer's flat out undrinkable to me.

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Old 11-27-2010, 08:22 AM   #2
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Maybe balance it with some dry hopping??

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Old 11-27-2010, 12:37 PM   #3
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That is not a bad suggestion but it wont really contribute any balancing bitterness. I am assuming you were sure that the beer was finished fermenting so I would either blend it with another light beer or dilute one glass with water. Then scale up the ratio to your volume kegged

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Old 11-27-2010, 02:58 PM   #4
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I'd try adding some water to a sample, to get to 1.016, say, and see if that improves the flavor. If it does, then you'll know how much water to add. If it doesn, but it still is a bit too sweet, remember that carbonation can balance sweetness and provide mouthfeel.

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Old 11-27-2010, 03:04 PM   #5
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If you use RO water, you'll definitely want to add some minerals to it, probably gypsum to make the hops pop a bit more since you are diluting that character. Also, dry hop after adding the water to re-infuse hop character into the diluted beer.

Another option would be brewing another batch to blend - that'd yield superior results, but obviously requires time and can be a bit of a pain in the ass.

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Old 11-27-2010, 10:38 PM   #6
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Make a hop tea and add it to it. A little goes a long way.

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Old 11-28-2010, 03:48 PM   #7
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Are you making Moose Drool? Or are you using English ale yeast? 1.063 to 1.020 is my standard brown ale! Love it.

I think watering it down with deaerated, sanitized water sounds like a good idea based on what you're describing. The biggest concern I would have is the obvious possibility of it being too watery, but if you think it has a lot of malt right now then it's a good candidate for dilution.

On the other hand, if your overall opinion of the beer is the sweetness to bitterness ratio is off, it doesn't seem like dilution would help that much.

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Old 11-29-2010, 03:47 PM   #8
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Cheers for the replies, all.

I actually used American Ale II for this, it's more of an American Brown (supposedly my attempt to clone Ellie's Brown Ale from Avery) but since I way overshot on the OG, I'm thinking that the yeast just did what it could. I did try adding water to a little sample (couldn't get a gravity reading since it's carbed now) but it just tasted like watery beer. (although I did drink it immediately, I'm thinking adding 2-3 pints of water to the keg, and letting it sit for a week would produce different results.)

The hop balance tho wasn't something I anticipated... maybe boil 3 pints of RO for 15 minutes, with an ounce of something like Williamette in there, making a hop tea as suggested, then cooling and adding the strained liquid to the keg would be the way to go...

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