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Old 06-08-2012, 05:48 PM   #1
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Default Watery and tasteless homebrew

I looked and looked in the threads for help with this.

I have just finshed my second batch of homebrew. The first was a Irish Red Ale with WLP004 yeast (from my local HBS). It was was an extract brew with steeping grains (18 oz 60l crystal malt and 2 0z roasted barley). I followed the directions to the tee. I fermented for 10 days (not much activity) then racked to secondary for 3 weeks ( I had to go out to sea), then bottled for 3 weeks, I chilled one openned it yes it was carbed nice head but it didnt really have a taste and was pretty watery. Chalked it up to lack of experience and

A few weeks later start my second A Brewers Best English Brown Ale. This kit had dry yeast. I was thinking maybe it was the LME from the first kit that made the first batch the way it was. I substituted the 3.3 lb can of Amber LME for 3 lbs of dark DME and the kit came with 2 lbs amber LME. The steeping grains were 8 oz. Caramel 60L, 4.oz chocolate, and 6 oz Carapils. I made a yeast starter (why because i wanted to try it out) and pitched at 70 degrees. With in an hour I had active fermentation, two days later no activity out of curiosity i checked the gravity and it was finished so i racked it to the secondary for another week and a half. I bottled 8 and kegged the rest. forced carbed it then still waited 2 days. Same results watery with little taste.

Both instructions said use 2.5 gallons of water for the boil should i have used the full 5 gallons instead? I steeped at 158 degrees for both was that to little?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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Old 06-08-2012, 06:04 PM   #2
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Do you like English Browns and Red Ales? Both tend to be relatively mild tasting beers with restrained aroma (which significantly impacts our perception of flavor). The only thing I can think of that would make the recipe come out watery would be if you ended up with too high a volume going into the fermenter - i.e. you added too much top-off water.

Maybe try a big, flavorful, higher original gravity beer for your next batch. A nice IPA kit from a tried-and-true vendor, or a full flavored big stout with lots of roastiness.

http://www.northernbrewer.com/shop/b...tract-kit.html
http://www.northernbrewer.com/shop/d...tract-kit.html

Good luck!

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Old 06-08-2012, 06:07 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steviesteve31 View Post
Both instructions said use 2.5 gallons of water for the boil should i have used the full 5 gallons instead? I steeped at 158 degrees for both was that to little?
A full boil is best if you can do it - need a big enough stove (often a propane burner) to bring 6.5 gallons to a boil, need an 8 gallon pot to hold the 6.5 gallons without fear of boilover, and an immersion chiller to cool off the wort post-boil (an ice bath won't do it).

But the partial boils you have done (which is standard for extract kits) is just fine and would not have any connection to the 'lack of flavor' problem you are perceiving.
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Old 06-08-2012, 06:10 PM   #4
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Do you have any links or instructions for the recipe?

Also, be more patient and leave it in the primary a little longer, 2 days is way to little time.

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Old 06-08-2012, 06:13 PM   #5
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Yes I really like brown and red ales like Killians and New castle I was hopeing for that taste but i did not get it.

I topped off to 5 gallons of spring water like the instructions said.

I was going to make a black IPA or maybe a requalr IPA.

Your English brown from your website looks very good.

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Old 06-08-2012, 06:15 PM   #6
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this was the kit

http://www.highgravitybrew.com/produ...n-Ale-p842.htm

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Old 06-08-2012, 06:15 PM   #7
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Please try your best to leave your beer in the primary for at least 2 weeks. Even after you hit your FG the yeast still have a lot of clean up work to do to the beer. Keeping it in the primary allows the full population of the yeast access to the beer to do the clean up work.

As someone mentioned earlier both of those styles you brewed are not huge beers and your yeast may have hit the high range of attenuation resulting in the watery beer.

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Old 06-08-2012, 06:27 PM   #8
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I left my first brew for over a week then in the secondary for 3 weeks and then in the bottle for 3 weeks.

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Old 06-08-2012, 07:03 PM   #9
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both kits had a lot of crystal.
some people think beer with lots of crystal tastes like overpowering caramel and some people think beer with lots of crystal tastes thin/watery.

you might just not like the recipes/styles your brewing without doing anything wrong.

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Old 06-08-2012, 07:13 PM   #10
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If you only kegged the beer two days ago and "forced carbed", it's probably not even close to properly carbed up and ready. I'd keep it on the gas at 10-12 psi in the fridge and wait a week and try it again. It should be better.

That brewer's best English brown ale kit tastes quite a bit like Newcastle to me.

But as was already mentioned, both of those beer styles are thin, quaffable beers without much body or fullness, so maybe you just don't like those styles.

I'd suggest buying a good quality kit in a style you like (not Brewer's Best, although those are usually "ok") and seeing if a better beer is coming next time.

Just to cover all the bases, what kind of water did you use?

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