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Old 07-26-2011, 01:34 AM   #1
kenpotf
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Default Best way to bring up alcohol content

I'm interested to hear what the best way is to increase alcohol content. I know you need sugar, but I'm wondering how much sugar (DME). Is DME the best route to go? I want the beer to be balanced and not all alcohol, but I'm thinking about modifying a recipe by adding more hops and some DME to increase the alcohol content.

So, what do you normally do?

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Old 07-26-2011, 01:51 AM   #2
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Well, how much do you want to increase the % by? A pound of DME will increase your ABV by .8%

If your doing an extract, use DME or LME to get your ABV up, not brown, or table sugar.

From what I have read (please let me know if I am wrong here) if you don't want to affect the body of the beer but want to get the final gravity a little higher you can have up to 7% of the total grist be corn sugar.

My brewing practice with 95% of other's recipes has been add more grain and hops, but I am a hophead and like big beers.

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Old 07-26-2011, 02:05 AM   #3
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The simplest way is simply to add a little more DME/LME. Unless you're ready to jump into the deep end of the pool (or have a beer program like beer smith) I wouldn't even bother adjusting hops or any of your specialty grains.) For instance, if you have a recipe for a 6% beer and you want to ramp it up to a 7% beer, I wouldn't change anything except the amount of extract.

Here's an excerpt from Palmer's book that might help you figure out how much more extract you want to add: http://www.howtobrew.com/section1/chapter3-4.html

Edit: I should point out, while sugar will increase your original gravity, it will produce a drier beer. That's why I recommend just adding more extract.

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Old 07-26-2011, 03:19 AM   #4
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Plain white table sugar, sucrose is 100% fermentable. Cane is identical to beet and it increases alcohol and decreases body from residual sugars.

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Old 07-26-2011, 08:05 AM   #5
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Strictly speaking, the BEST way is to brew a different beer. That is, instead of throwing a bunch of spurious fermentables into, say, a Dry Stout kit, just buy the kit for the RIS you wanted in the first place.

Or just drop a depth charge of 80 proof into the glass at serving time.

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Old 07-26-2011, 08:48 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DannPM View Post
Plain white table sugar, sucrose is 100% fermentable. Cane is identical to beet and it increases alcohol and decreases body from residual sugars.
Tried that once..too much and the taste later is not good. Ruined a good beer that way once trying to make a high ABV beer....but man if you want to get drunk fast it does the trick.
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Old 07-26-2011, 04:24 PM   #7
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Ive used dark brown sugar in my imperial stout and barley wine with good results but like mentioned by jgln to much is not good. I keep it below 10% of the total and a pound increases the abv about 1% in 5 gallons.

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Old 07-26-2011, 06:08 PM   #8
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Anyone tried this? I was thinking of trying it on a Brown Ale I plan to brew soon, but don't want to ruin the flavor.

http://www.austinhomebrew.com/product_info.php?products_id=10137

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Old 07-26-2011, 08:17 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigTerp View Post
Anyone tried this? I was thinking of trying it on a Brown Ale I plan to brew soon, but don't want to ruin the flavor.

http://www.austinhomebrew.com/product_info.php?products_id=10137
I have. It's pretty much as advertised. raises my OG roughly .007 on a 5 gallon extract full boil and I don't notice any taste difference
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Old 07-26-2011, 08:23 PM   #10
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In my Hopped up Honey wheat I added 2 lbs of honey and I can tell there is more alcohol than normal.

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