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Old 12-05-2010, 05:00 PM   #1
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Default How many OG points are noticeable?

I'm curious.. what is the minimum number of OG points you can actually taste? For example, all things being the same (hops, etc), how much difference in final taste would hitting 1.057 instead of 1.053 make? Barely noticeable, or pretty significant?

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Old 12-05-2010, 05:55 PM   #2
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not significant. it will have slightly less alcohol. if it was going to be a ~6% beer, now it's going to be a ~5.5% beer.

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Old 12-06-2010, 12:02 AM   #3
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So if you are following a recipe, the most important things are malt ratio and hop schedule? How much leeway is there on OG/FG before it is a clear deviation from the recipe (strictly in terms of taste)?

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Old 12-06-2010, 12:58 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pj_rage View Post
So if you are following a recipe, the most important things are malt ratio and hop schedule? How much leeway is there on OG/FG before it is a clear deviation from the recipe (strictly in terms of taste)?
It's not the OG (within reason) that makes the beer taste the way it does. It's the balance between the IBUs and the OG. If you wanted to hit 1.040 and hit 1.070, and the IBUs are 20, the beer will be very malty and not balanced. And vice versa- if you planned a 1.070 beer and hopped it accordingly so that the IBUs were 70, but it came in at 1.040, you'd have a very bitter beer. More fermentables means that the beer may taste a bit more "boozy" but not with a small difference.

As long as you're pretty close in OG, the IBU/SG ratio won't change much and the beer will still be pretty much as the recipe designed. A bigger difference will change the balance of the beer, but it will be to a smaller degree with a 10 point difference depending on the recipe.
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Old 12-06-2010, 11:52 AM   #5
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That makes perfect sense, Yooper. So I guess my real question then, is at what point does a change in the IBU/SG ratio become noticeable in taste (for most people)?

What I'm really getting at, is when I'm trying to follow a recipe, and I'm looking at gravities (pre and post boil), I want to have a feel for what gravity (ratio) I can say "I'll just leave it" and at what point should I should consider making a modification to bring it back in line. I think this will be less of a problem once I dial in my efficiency (it has been getting better and better each brew, so it's hard to predict at this point), but I think it would still be helpful for the future too, to have a gut feeling or rule of thumb on how much of an IBU/SG ratio change will be noticeable in the final product.

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Old 12-06-2010, 12:37 PM   #6
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Another thing to take into account when it comes to gravity and taste, besides OG/IBU ratio, is the FG. I think a few points difference in FG is much more noticable, taste-wise, than a few points in OG...those residual sugars in say a 1.020 FG compared to an expected 1.014 would make a pretty significant change in taste.

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