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Old 08-15-2013, 09:01 PM   #1
irishbill
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Default I need a style for my golden ale recipe

I have been working on beertoad to formulate a new recipe trying to get color, bitterness, alcohol where I want them on paper before I brew.

Beertoad has a list of styles (incomplete I think) and will tell you if your recipe conforms to your selected style. Of course all recipes conform to the escape category of specialty beer. Beertoad has allowable ranges of SRM, OG, FG, ABV, IBU and OG to IBU for each of the styles. Apparently if doesn't care where your grains come from or whether the name of your yeast matches the name of your style.

I have been working on a Golden Ale recipe but I can't quite get the recipe to conform to any style I have tried. The closest style I have found is a Belgium strong ale but that style requires a high ABV and puts limits on OG and FG that are difficult to meet. I think that most Belgium strong ale uses sugar to get those numbers and an extremely high attenuation yeast.

Anyway I want a style that has less alcohol than the Belgium Strong Ales but more than I found in your usual ale styles. I want about 6-7% ABV. Of course the color needs to be golden about a 6 or 7 SRM. Like the Belgium styles I want the sweetness bitterness to be a little on the sweet side.

Please help me escape the feeling that my beer is lost in space, and avoid the dreaded designation of specialty brew. Help me find a style.

Thanks

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Old 08-15-2013, 10:30 PM   #2
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what kind of yeast are you planning on using? That usually makes a big impact on how I classify beers. You can stretch some of the specs like IBU and gravity, but it's tough to brew Belgian style with an american lager yeast, for example.

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Old 08-16-2013, 12:46 PM   #3
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Without seeing the recipe, it's hard to make a judgement. However, unless you're brewing this for competition, the style designation is really unimportant.

Brew what you want to drink, style guidelines be damned!

But, like I said, if you want good feedback, we'll need to actually see the recipe. Also, it would help to know what kind of style you were aiming for. You mention Belgian styles several times in your post, so I assume that's what you have in mind. Take a look at Biere de Garde. I suppose it's not strictly Belgian but, based on what you've shared, it could fit.

And, like the person above me said, classification is almost all about yeast. I can brew the same wort but ferment with different yeasts and get two totally different styles. Knowing what kind of yeast you want to use will make all the difference in style classification.

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Old 08-16-2013, 03:50 PM   #4
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Hi

One of my goals is to integrate my understanding of style with recipe development. I am asking for help because I realized that my notion of style was absolutely inconsistent with the style checker at beertoad. Their style checker does not care about the name of your yeast. It does not care about the kinds of grain. It only cares about the numbers. It uses published attenuation numbers from a selected yeast and OG calculated from the grain list to calculate FG and ABV. Each style has an acceptable range for each of the variables including bitterness and color. If the numbers fall within the predefined ranges then the recipe is marked as conforming to the style otherwise use the special brew style.

My other goal is to find a style for a golden ale. My LHBS only carries WYEAST. I use a lot of American Ale II, Scottish Ale, Northwest Ale, and British ESB. There a lots and lots of golden ale recipes around. I have made several. I used Northwest on the batch bubbling away in my basement. White Labs publishes higher attention and temperature tolerance. In order to get the numbers to work on beertoad for a Belgium strong ale one would have to use White Labs.

Do you know a style that a golden ale would fit. It's not Pale ale. It's not IPA. It's not lager or corn beer or rice beer. I'm a little frustrated. Not only do I want a style home for a simple golden ale but I want a style home for my golden ale which is a little higher alcohol and a little sweeter but less so than the Belgium recipes.

Here is the latest incarnation (5 gal) but I have not tried brewing anything close to this yet:

Golden Honey and Oats ( I know it sounds like a granola bar. I may have to change the name.)

10-14 lbs 2-row
1/2 lb flaked oats
2 lbs malted wheat (pale or white)
1 lb honey malt

1 oz Northern Brewer 60 min
2 oz Hallertau (from my garden) 7 day dry hop

Northwest WYEAST 1332

After what I have learned on beertoad trying to make the Belgium Strong Ales, I'm really tempted to use WYEAST 3522 Belgian Ardennes high attenuation high flocculence and high temp tolerance.

All of the hard work required to develop a recipe gives me motivation to try to find a style. If I manage to come up with a recipe that produces likeable beer then why not enter it in competition. If one is going to compete than conforming to a style, only enhances the value of the labor of beer love.

Please Help me find a Style

Thanks

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Old 08-16-2013, 05:58 PM   #5
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It's an IPA. I know you want to call it a "Golden Ale", but you've made an IPA. A little low on the IBUs, perhaps, but with the higher-alcohol content and the hop character you'll get from the dry hops, any judge is going to think you tried to make an IPA. I guess you could call it an "Extra Pale Ale", but if you were going to enter a competition with it, it'd probably have to go into the American IPA category. However, with those Hallertau hops, it might get dinged for aroma since the character you'd get from the Hallertau dry-hop would seem out of place in an American IPA. Sorry if that's not the answer you were looking for, but it is what it is.

If you ferment it with the 3522, you'll have made a Belgian IPA, and there isn't a BJCP category specifically for that style. With a Belgian yeast, that same grain/hop bill would probably be submitted under the "Belgian Specialty Ale" (16E) category.

Having said all that, don't let it discourage you. If you like the beer you brewed, call it what you want and drink it. Don't let yourself get so penned in by style unless you want to brew specifically for competition. If you want to tell your friends "This is a golden ale", then it's a golden ale. Having style guidelines is great in that it allows us a way to quickly describe and categorize our product for the consumer, but style's usefulness ends there. And definitely don't let a piece of software tell you what you have or haven't brewed.

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Old 08-16-2013, 06:02 PM   #6
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If you are shooting for a beer about 6% then I would say that is a pale ale since the IBU's are low. If you are more on the 7% end then I guess it's an IPA but just not hoppy. If you are going with a Belgian strain then you might be getting into Saison Territory too

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Old 08-18-2013, 01:41 AM   #7
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Hi

I've been calling it beertoad it's actually brewtoad sorry.

I tried to get brewtoad to accept this recipe as an American Pale Ale

Here's whats left of my recipe

8 lbs 2-row
1 lb Malted Wheat White
12 oz honey malt
8 oz oat flakes

1 oz Centennial 60min
2 oz Hallertau

American Ale II

It seems brewtoad doesn't think Americans like much alcohol in their Pale Ales

To get the above recipe to be an American IPA I used 10 lbs of 2-row and an 1.5 oz of centennial.

I got the following through the style checker as a Belgium Golden Strong Ale

12 lb 2-row

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Old 08-18-2013, 01:45 AM   #8
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Here is the Belgium Strong Ale recipe.

12 lb 2-row
1 lb Malted Wheat (pale or white)
1 lb Honey Malt
8 oz Flaked Oats

1 oz Centennial 60 min

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Old 08-18-2013, 01:52 AM   #9
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2 oz Hallertau dry hop 7 day

Belgium Strong Ale Yeast from White Labs

I'm liking the last recipe the best.

I know I descended into silliness but if anyone has another idea for a fit please give.

All this hard work has made me very THRISTY.

Thanks

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Old 08-18-2013, 04:11 AM   #10
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I think the problem is that you are trying to "shove" a recipe/beer into a category. Based on your posts I don't think either recipe sounds like a very good IPA or Belgian Golden Strong. Of course that only matters IF you are planning on entering it into a comp. Otherwise just brew what you like and call it whatever you want.

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