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Old 02-05-2013, 11:50 PM   #1
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Default Thoughts on braggots?

I am currently drinking my first (and maybe last?) braggot. The idea of a beer/honeywine hybrid really appealed to me at the time of creation but I am really not a fan so far. Granted it is only 6 months old and I know that is young but the general idea of the taste is there I would imagine. I would really rather have a pure mead or a beer. This braggot is kind of like a super sweet liquor. It reminds me of rich alcoholic iced tea like a long island.

What are your thoughts on the style? Do you think I maybe just missed brewing it correctly by a long shot?

I did 10#s honey, 3.3#s dark malt, and some green tea with EC1118. Its not bad or infected or anything and the abv is quite nice but the taste is just "meh" for me. Its not bad but its not great. Maybe it is just because I don't like really sweet drinks...

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Old 02-06-2013, 03:25 AM   #2
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IMO braggots need hops to balance out that over sweetness you are having. Also I keep my bragotts much lower ABV like a beer at around 6% ABV. For the couple I have done I am happy with the results. If I were you I would give it another shot and add an oz of Saaz hops split into 3 parts added over an hour in a mash with the Dark malt. Unless you really want the ABV I would cut the honey down a bit and use a yeast with a much lower Attenuation like one of my favorites Wyeast London ESB 1968.

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Old 02-06-2013, 01:18 PM   #3
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I kept thinking that while I was tasting it. Hops would much improve on the overpowering sweetness.

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Old 02-06-2013, 02:57 PM   #4
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I've found that I lean toward braggots that are little more barley than honey. The best I've done is taking a regular ole stout recipe with an extra 10% hop addition...and then adding 5-10lbs of honey at the peak of fermentation. I generally just refer to it as a barleywine as my friends don't really get into the nomenclature of this sort of thing, but the few I've made have turned out great. Dumping in the honey at high krausen gives the yeast a big head start and I've been getting a fairly dry, very high alcohol nectar that is pretty good after just a few months.

I've tried this as IPA/Braggot and didn't think the results were as good. The thick malt backbone of a porter or stout really helps blend with the high gravity of braggot (to me). The extra hops also help with the balance.

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Old 02-06-2013, 06:09 PM   #5
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I bottled my batch of hefty braggot last week (12# honey, 3lbs malt extract, maybe 4-5oz cascade hops for a 5 gallon batch). My thoughts are mixed as well.

The hops definitely help to balance the sweetness, but the fact that it has hops but is not carbonated makes it taste a little odd. Also, it's nearly a year old at this point and all of the hop aroma has faded away, leaving just a moderate "flat" bitterness.

I oaked it pretty heavily as well, to give it some complexity. It's not *bad*, and I'm going to age it more, but I've definitely learned some things for next time.

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Old 02-06-2013, 10:16 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bk0 View Post
I bottled my batch of hefty braggot last week (12# honey, 3lbs malt extract, maybe 4-5oz cascade hops for a 5 gallon batch). My thoughts are mixed as well.

The hops definitely help to balance the sweetness, but the fact that it has hops but is not carbonated makes it taste a little odd. Also, it's nearly a year old at this point and all of the hop aroma has faded away, leaving just a moderate "flat" bitterness.

I oaked it pretty heavily as well, to give it some complexity. It's not *bad*, and I'm going to age it more, but I've definitely learned some things for next time.
I had read that braggots were supposed to be served slightly carbed so I carbed mine a bit. It helps. The more of it I drink the more I don't mind drinking it (pretty standard for booze I guess lol) . I still think a little bit of hops definitely would have helped. Willamette would add some nice earthy tones.
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Old 02-15-2013, 06:19 PM   #7
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I am not an expert on mead but if you don't like the taste, maybe you could try dry hopping your braggot before drinking it. I read somewhere that in some brewpub, there's a dry hopping device in line with the tap, so that the freshly poured beer just got through hop. Maybe using an individual tea infuser, you could impair an aroma/taste to your braggot glass.

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Old 02-16-2013, 10:06 PM   #8
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Yeah, the issue with dry hopping though is that it fades very quickly and meads in general need to be aged for a long time. So I feel like if I dry-hopped I would either be rushing to drink it all or I would be wasting perfectly good hops.

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Old 02-18-2013, 05:39 PM   #9
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But if you dry-hop before drinking. Using, say, a french press you infuse the hop in the braggot then filter out the hop and serve the braggot right away.

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Old 02-19-2013, 01:05 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TLProulx
But if you dry-hop before drinking. Using, say, a french press you infuse the hop in the braggot then filter out the hop and serve the braggot right away.
This is indeed an interesting concept, has this been tried before? If I had some braggot and hops on hand I'd try it with my press...
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