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Old 07-19-2010, 10:15 PM   #21
chilort
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I'm looking forward to the raspberry / blackberry (r/b) beer I made with sorghum to see what it does. The IPA and the latest r/b beer are the only two I've made with all sorghum (I guess both had honey too but at the start of the boil).

To me the sorghum has strong citrus and bitterness and completely covers up all of the hop flavor and smell. This IPA actually smelled great before I transferred it to the secondary. When I went to bottle it, it had changed to all the characteristics I'd heard describe sorghum beers.

I just put icasanova's chocolate stout in the primary (Friday) and it smells great at this point (it was made very close to his recipe but with a touch of coffee, a little less oatmeal, and a novice grain toaster). Should I avoid using the secondary? Or is it chance (or something else) that made my IPA go from great to not great at the transfer into the secondary?

I've heard that aging these sorghum beers helps. How long do they need to sit before they come around (rules of thumb or is it all empirical at this point)? My barley wine is still in the bottle (minus a few samples) and I bottled it in early January. We do know how to hold onto them when necessary.



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Old 07-19-2010, 10:26 PM   #22
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I'm looking forward to the raspberry / blackberry (r/b) beer I made with sorghum to see what it does. The IPA and the latest r/b beer are the only two I've made with all sorghum (I guess both had honey too but at the start of the boil).

To me the sorghum has strong citrus and bitterness and completely covers up all of the hop flavor and smell. This IPA actually smelled great before I transferred it to the secondary. When I went to bottle it, it had changed to all the characteristics I'd heard describe sorghum beers.

I just put icasanova's chocolate stout in the primary (Friday) and it smells great at this point (it was made very close to his recipe but with a touch of coffee, a little less oatmeal, and a novice grain toaster). Should I avoid using the secondary? Or is it chance (or something else) that made my IPA go from great to not great at the transfer into the secondary?

I've heard that aging these sorghum beers helps. How long do they need to sit before they come around (rules of thumb or is it all empirical at this point)? My barley wine is still in the bottle (minus a few samples) and I bottled it in early January. We do know how to hold onto them when necessary.
Age will help get rid of some sorghum flavor. I have a year old tripel that I tasted the other day, and it was pretty much devoid of Sorghum flavor. Aging an IPA will not help though, as it will just become bitter at the same time from the hops. Age "Malty" beers like Belgians and the browns and stouts of the world. Drink the hop heads fast...it is possible you just didnt drink it fast enough, in fact. You can try and age the IPA, but it will always be bitter...well, at least as long as you are alive.

As for primary/secondary, I do not secondary unless there is a reason to do so, like adding dry hops/oak/fruit. Any time you touch your beer you risk infection. It doesn't sound like that happened to you though, chances are good that your beer was destined to taste like this, during fermentation tasting and smelling are only indicative after you have tasted ALOT of fermenting beers.


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Old 07-20-2010, 03:11 AM   #23
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I just put lcasanova's chocolate stout in the primary (Friday) and it smells great at this point (it was made very close to his recipe but with a touch of coffee, a little less oatmeal, and a novice grain toaster). Should I avoid using the secondary? Or is it chance (or something else) that made my IPA go from great to not great at the transfer into the secondary?

I've heard that aging these sorghum beers helps. How long do they need to sit before they come around (rules of thumb or is it all empirical at this point)? My barley wine is still in the bottle (minus a few samples) and I bottled it in early January. We do know how to hold onto them when necessary.
What was the volume of your boil and OG? Mine was 1.081 and was a partial boil. I did a secondary on this one just because I could and so I could rack on top of the vanilla bean. I think coffee was a great addition, I might recommend that if you are doing secondary (which isn't necessary) to do it a little longer to let the vanilla sit a bit more- but you might not want to do that since you added coffee.

Age certainly helps for some beers but not all of them. Try putting one or two bottles away and trying them over time to see what you think so you can get an idea.

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Old 07-20-2010, 10:58 AM   #24
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We have a large stock pot and generally I boil 2-2.5gal of water. This was closer to 2.5gal. The OG was 1.074. I put just a small amount of coffee (I didn't measure but less coffee than what I use for my 8cup French Press in the morning) in a steeping bag and put it in the boil for the last 10 min. I made a coffee stout for myself and that's how I did the coffee in it (though I used over 1lb in that beer) and it turned out well. The smell of this beer is so nice and so strong I couldn't even smell the small amount of coffee though. I was planning on adding the vanilla when I transferred to the secondary.

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Old 08-15-2010, 05:23 PM   #25
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We're getting ready to bottle the stout this afternoon. It still smells great.

We put the raz-wit in the fermenter last weekend. It smells nice too. I'll have to put my recipe for that one up it really didn't differ much from what I amassed in this bulletin board thread (forgot the sweet orange peel but that's about it).

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Old 08-22-2010, 11:12 PM   #26
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Just transferred the raz-wit to the secondary. My wife and I had just a drop each and it was really good. Keep your fingers crossed. Two weeks in the secondary should help quite a bit more of the raspberry stuff settle out now that the big chunks are gone. Its a lot more pink than any raz-wit I've ever seen. I'm hoping 2lbs of raspberries doesn't dry it out too much and make it too much like another beer I make. I think the 2 lbs of honey at the end are going to help keep it sweet though. If the flavor of the one drop is right, it will be sweet.

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Old 08-23-2010, 05:42 PM   #27
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Just transferred the raz-wit to the secondary. My wife and I had just a drop each and it was really good. Keep your fingers crossed. Two weeks in the secondary should help quite a bit more of the raspberry stuff settle out now that the big chunks are gone. Its a lot more pink than any raz-wit I've ever seen. I'm hoping 2lbs of raspberries doesn't dry it out too much and make it too much like another beer I make. I think the 2 lbs of honey at the end are going to help keep it sweet though. If the flavor of the one drop is right, it will be sweet.
Honey will make it TASTE sweeter, but will actually dry it out more. Taste is the important thing though, and I doubt it'll be too dry with 2lbs of raspberries. I did the same weight with strawberries and it came out pretty normal FG.
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Old 08-24-2010, 03:34 PM   #28
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Just tried lcasanova's chocolate stout. I put maybe 2oz of coffee in it and it just cuts right through. Hopefully a little bit of time may let some of the flavors mellow and work together. It had only been in the bottle a week.


IMAG0013.jpg by chilort, on Flickr


The glass on the right has lacing from a non-gf beer that was in the glass before we decided to open one of the stouts (hey, I'm not gf).

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Old 08-24-2010, 06:31 PM   #29
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Nice! Way over the top chocolate and coffee or what? How was the alcohol? Mine was pretty hot for a while and it has slightly mellowed. But I'll tell you, after the first few sips it really grows on you.

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Old 08-27-2010, 04:17 PM   #30
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I'll have to check on the ABV. It was over 7 but I don't remember exactly what I calculated. I also broke my hydrometer between starting it and finishing it so it may not be all that accurate anyway.

The beer does really grow on me and my wife seemed to like to too.

It bottle conditioned (at least enough to make the right sounding pop) in about a week. We're going to try another one here this coming weekend to see what two weeks does. I suspect it will be better. Then we might just wait a bit until cooler weather comes before we drink too much more of it. I'm looking forward to seeing how the flavors on this one change over time.

It has kind of a thin mouth feel too. I wish there was something to make the beer thicker. I did only use 4oz of dextrin so maybe the called for 8oz would be better. I didn't do it in this beer (would have been a real PITA with the oats) but I've been using about 1/2 - 1lb of rice hulls at the end of the boil in these gluten free beers late to help get more body so that might be something to consider for some of the other ones.



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