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Old 11-15-2007, 01:29 AM   #1
foxtrot
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Default Options for boosting gravity

My 5 gallon Rubbermaid cooler limits my mashing to about 12-13 lbs. of grain, which limits my OG to about 60 for 5 gallons. I want to start brewing Strong Belgians and Imperials and such, but can't afford to scale up my system right now. So my options are:

1) Max out my MT and boil to a smaller volume = less beer or,
2) Max out my MT and supplement with dry or liquid extract (base malt) at the boil.

Which way do you guys go? Does adding an extra 2 - 3 lbs of extract affect the flavor much? What is a good quality extract to use for supplementing AG?

Thanks!

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Old 11-15-2007, 02:12 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by foxtrot
My 5 gallon Rubbermaid cooler limits my mashing to about 12-13 lbs. of grain, which limits my OG to about 60 for 5 gallons. I want to start brewing Strong Belgians and Imperials and such, but can't afford to scale up my system right now. So my options are:

1) Max out my MT and boil to a smaller volume = less beer or,
2) Max out my MT and supplement with dry or liquid extract (base malt) at the boil.

Which way do you guys go? Does adding an extra 2 - 3 lbs of extract affect the flavor much? What is a good quality extract to use for supplementing AG?

Thanks!
Oddly enough, just answered today.

high gravity in a 5 gallon MLT

Chad
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Old 11-16-2007, 01:12 AM   #3
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Well, if you are doing a Belgian, how about Belgiab candi sugar?

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Old 11-16-2007, 01:27 AM   #4
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Yep, go for Candi sugar. You can buy it at your LHBS or make it yourself if you like. It's what the Belgians use in Dubbels and Triples so for your strong Belgians you won't be deviating from style.

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Old 11-16-2007, 01:30 AM   #5
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I second making your own Belgian Candi sugar for belgian beers. It's 75% cheaper and so easy to do.

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Old 11-16-2007, 02:35 PM   #6
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Since Candi sugar is a major part of a Belgian, that's the logical thing. When I did barley wines in the past, I'd add extract. With a 48 quart mash tun, the next run will be AG.

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Old 11-16-2007, 04:15 PM   #7
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Yup, go with Candi sugar for your trappists and DME for other brews that you want to be above your 1.060 ceiling.

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Old 11-16-2007, 04:48 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by foxtrot
I want to start brewing Strong Belgians and Imperials and such, but can't afford to scale up my system right now. So my options are:

Which way do you guys go? Does adding an extra 2 - 3 lbs of extract affect the flavor much? What is a good quality extract to use for supplementing AG?

Thanks!
For Belgian Dubbels and Trippels, your 5 gal. cooler will do fine. You probably won't even have to max out your grain bill for dubbels. The difference in OG will be made up with sugar/candi sugar/brown sugar/dextrose/whatever easily fermentable sugar you want to use. The sugar bill is a key piece to what makes a belgian dubbel/trippel. Don't use DME or LME since this will add more body to the beer than you'll want.
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Old 11-16-2007, 05:19 PM   #9
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I use DME all the time for bigger beers with my 5gal MLT. Its inexpensive, simple and effective.
However Brew Your Own just had an article on a multiple mash technique that looks like it would be a very effective if not time consuming way to make big beers. Pick up the December BYO if you are interested.
Craig

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Old 11-16-2007, 05:22 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CBBaron
I use DME all the time for bigger beers with my 5gal MLT. Its inexpensive...

Craig
I'm going to have to disagree with this statement. DME, in my experience, it really expensive (about $5/lb or $14 for 3 lbs for me).
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