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Old 12-13-2012, 03:49 AM   #1
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Default Your recipe or someone else's?

What do you do more often? Design your own recipes or use recipes from other sources such as books, kits, or internet?

My last 20 (or so) batches have been;
- one kit
- 3 recipes from HBT
- the rest designed by myself

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Old 12-13-2012, 03:54 AM   #2
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I always start with a known good recipe and tweak it to suit my taste.

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Old 12-13-2012, 04:02 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Jayhem View Post
I always start with a known good recipe and tweak it to suit my taste.
I've done this as well, but I usually end up tweaking it so much that it isn't anything like the original recipe.

I will say that designing my own recipes has taught me a lot about making beer. Sure, I've made some bad recipes, but I also learned what made them bad in the process. It's a great way to learn what not to do. I've also made some really good ones, too.

In the end it was all a good learning experience, and I get to drink the fruits of my labor (even if the fruit isn't always at it's best.. haha). These days my process and quality seem to be pretty consistant. I like the beer I make. I don't do too much crazy experimenting anymore...
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Old 12-13-2012, 04:08 AM   #4
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Mostly my own at this point. I'll sometimes reference books that I have to get an idea of what I want to brew, but usually end up changing the grain percentages to my taste. I don't do this to be "different" though. I just know what I want from my beers and have a decent handle on how to get it with the various grains available.

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Old 12-13-2012, 04:14 AM   #5
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I don't do this to be "different" though. I just know what I want from my beers and have a decent handle on how to get it with the various grains available.
This sums it up well for me, too!
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Old 12-13-2012, 04:15 AM   #6
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I also look at recipes or the ingredients in kits. Then I use Beersmith and my inventory and make substitutions as needed.

One of my best beers was a brown ale that was made from leftovers. I looked at recipes and tweaked until it looked good. It was!

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Old 12-13-2012, 04:17 AM   #7
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I haven't brewed anything but my own recipes since my very first batch in 2002, an Irish Red Ale kit from North Corner Brew Supply in Bellingam, WA.

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Old 12-13-2012, 04:29 AM   #8
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Now that I think of it the one kit I bought was also tweaked. It was an English Porter kit that I added grilled pumpkin and spices to.

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Old 12-13-2012, 04:32 AM   #9
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Lately, I start by reading the description of a style on the BJCP, then I start compiling a recipe based on description using ingredients that seem to fit and mostly from the region the style comes from, then I'll use BS to help me dial in a recipe using it's fancy style calculator, then I'll get on HBT do some comparisons of what I've just created to some other creations and make final adjustments, and lastly I'll try to use ingredients I have in inventory if it fits the bill. Sometimes the adjustments are small and sometimes not so small

I'll sometimes use someone else's recipe, but I usually end up modifying a little bit for various reasons (inventory mostly). Most recently I used BMs Captain Hooked on Bitters recipe as a model but used all american ingredients so it's an american-style esb (as opposed to an apa), and with a slight tweak to the grainbill. I gotta say it's tasting fantastic for day 13!!

When I started brewing, before the internet, I designed all my own recipes. I've ALWAYS enjoyed the hobby but the outcomes was not as rewarding back then

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Old 12-13-2012, 04:33 AM   #10
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I usually take a proven recipe and tweak it a little to my preference or based on the ingredients I have on hand. I know that I am different than a lot of brewers in that I don't usually build a recipe from the ground up. I take what has worked well for others and use that for a "base" recipe with some subtle tweaks.

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