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Old 04-28-2012, 05:52 AM   #1
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Default Adding specialty grains to Brewers Best kit

I recently picked up a Brewer's Best Belgian Tripel recipe kit. The kit came with over 9lbs of extract (mix of LME and DME), plus some candy sugar and maltodextrin... but only 1/4 lb of "specialty grains" (4oz of Belgian Aromatic).

I'm still pretty new to this brewing stuff, but I wanted to try my hand at modifying (hopefully improving) this recipe. I'd like to increase the head retention a bit, as my last few batches have lacked in that area. Also this kit is supposed to fall in the lower end of the ABV range for a Tripel (somewhere around 8.5%). I'd like to end up a bit closer to 10%. I wouldn't mind adding a little bit more caramel flavor/color as well.

So here's what I have in mind. The instructions suggest to steep 4oz of aromatic in 2.5 gallons of water for 20 minutes. I would like to increase that to at least 3 gallons of water, and steep the following:

.25lbs flaked wheat
.25lbs belgian aromatic
.25lbs belgian caravienne
.5lbs belgian caramel pils

Also, I plan to swap out the dry yeast (S-33) with some Wyeast 3787 Trappist High Gravity.

So what do you think? How do you think these additions would change the flavor, head retention and overall outcome of the beer?

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Old 04-28-2012, 05:57 AM   #2
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Don't see any real issues. The aromatic needs to be mashed so for your steeping, treat it more like a mini-mash and keep the steeping temp around 152-154 the entire time. I don't think you need the flaked wheat, the recipe includes maltodextrin and the caravienne will also add body.

The best help for head retention is nice clean glassware.

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Old 04-28-2012, 08:22 PM   #3
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Thanks for the tip.

Are there any other grains that would be advantageous to add for a Tripel? Or should this (plus the ingredients in the kit) do what I want?

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Old 04-28-2012, 08:27 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by dmoore714 View Post
Thanks for the tip.

Are there any other grains that would be advantageous to add for a Tripel? Or should this (plus the ingredients in the kit) do what I want?
One of the things about a tripel is the absolute drinkability of it. The best tripels are simply pilsner malt and a bit of sugar. Crystal malts change the mouthfeel and the dry finish, so I wouldn't add any.

There are many other recipes better suited to adding specialty grains, but I don't think a tripel is one than can benefit from more complexity at all. The aromatic malt is good, as it gives a nice malty flavor and aroma. I don't like the maltodextrine in the kit, though, that's for sure!
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Old 04-28-2012, 08:58 PM   #5
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What is maltodextrin for? And is it something I should consider leaving out (or replacing with some other kind of malt/extract/grains)?

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Old 04-28-2012, 09:00 PM   #6
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What is maltodextrin for? And is it something I should consider leaving out (or replacing with some other kind of malt/extract/grains)?
It's a "thickener" for foods like puddings. I'd leave it out. You could keep the carapils (caramel pils) you added in your recipe for a sub, which I like much better!
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Old 04-29-2012, 03:15 PM   #7
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Good to know. Thanks Yooper!

There are other posts on the forum that suggest maltodextrin is a mild sweetener. If I leave it out or replace it with malt, will the end product be too dry? Or if I do replace it, should I go with some other non-fermentable sugar (lactose, splenda, etc?)

Hops question: The recipe doesn't tell me what kind of hops I have. It just says one is "bittering" and one is "aroma". Should I consider replacing those with something I can actually define and control a bit better? If so, what should I use? I've played with tettnang and saaz before and think they would lend well to the style. Any other thoughts? Or can anyone verify what kind of hops BrewersBest puts in their kits?

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Old 04-29-2012, 03:23 PM   #8
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I want to say the hops in that particular kit are cascade and rainier.

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Old 06-02-2012, 11:25 PM   #9
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just came from LHBS with a Brewersbest Dunkelweizen kit. Any suggestions?

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Old 07-02-2012, 11:29 PM   #10
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Doh! Wrong thread. Nevermind.

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