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Old 11-02-2012, 04:13 AM   #1
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Default Boosting alcohol

Hey am planning on making my second batch of beer Sunday. Buying an extract kit for a nut brown ale. I have the mr beer kit and was thinking to use their booster in my beer. Says is should boost by 1 percent. What ya think?

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Old 11-02-2012, 04:25 AM   #2
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Leave the Mr. Beer stuff/crap out. If you want to increase the ABV%, then add more DME/extract to get there. You'll probably want to look at the hop additions too, unless you don't care so much as a bit less IBUs in there. Most places that sell kits (and know anything about brewing) will be able to help you hit your goal.

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Old 11-02-2012, 07:01 AM   #3
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Definitely try to maintain balance! I'm gonna guess their booster is some random fermentables, which will in turn drop the body and add booze without adding malt character, bitterness, sweetness, or anything else really. If you want to amp up your beer, do it in a judicious way: more extract, more hops, and yeast to match.

Dropping a bunch of weight on one side of the scale isn't going to keep it balanced.

EDIT: I looked and I guess they've got a good bit of dextrins in there too since they claim it doesn't water down the body. Still, stick with malt extract and don't forget to account for it in the rest of the recipe.

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Old 11-02-2012, 05:30 PM   #4
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Yeah when I buy my kit I'll ask for more malt and hops sounds good to me thanks

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Old 11-02-2012, 05:42 PM   #5
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I am not certain what the booster is but I think it is some sort of enzyme (think beano) that breaks down unfermentable sugars to be converted into more alcohol, so yes you will have more of it but you will have a drier beer too. What do you want?

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Old 11-02-2012, 08:36 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by humann_brewing View Post
I am not certain what the booster is but I think it is some sort of enzyme (think beano) that breaks down unfermentable sugars to be converted into more alcohol, so yes you will have more of it but you will have a drier beer too. What do you want?
OP posted he was going for a "nut brown ale" for the next batch. With that being the case I wouldn't recommend doing anything that will (or could) make it thinner. Most LHBS' should be able to formulate a higher strength version of a recipe. Especially if they make the kit. Getting more ABV% could be as simple as adding another pound (or so) of DME to the recipe. I would still make sure it's going to be properly balanced (or not too far off) with hops and such. Also, depending on the yeast strain used (especially if using liquid) a starter is advisable. Once you begin making starters for your batches, you'll be getting better beer into your glass.
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Old 11-02-2012, 09:13 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Golddiggie View Post
OP posted he was going for a "nut brown ale" for the next batch. With that being the case I wouldn't recommend doing anything that will (or could) make it thinner. Most LHBS' should be able to formulate a higher strength version of a recipe. Especially if they make the kit. Getting more ABV% could be as simple as adding another pound (or so) of DME to the recipe. I would still make sure it's going to be properly balanced (or not too far off) with hops and such. Also, depending on the yeast strain used (especially if using liquid) a starter is advisable. Once you begin making starters for your batches, you'll be getting better beer into your glass.
I know, I saw the style, I asked for the sake of what the brewer wanted out of the beer, not if they wanted it to style. I have a pale going now that I am trying to make it bone dry as I don't like much body if any in that style. 1007-8 is what I'm shooting for. It's all about preference unless your trying to submit it for a comp.
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Old 11-02-2012, 10:44 PM   #8
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I'd way rather have a full body better tasting beer than more alcohol.

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Old 11-02-2012, 10:48 PM   #9
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I'd way rather have a full body better tasting beer than more alcohol.
There ya go, don't use it and add another pound if you want more alky
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Old 11-02-2012, 11:41 PM   #10
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I'd way rather have a full body better tasting beer than more alcohol.
Sounds like you're destined to go partial mash soon, and then progress to all grain brewing. IMO/IME, those methods are the best way to have more control over the outcome of the batch. To get more ABV, you simply add more base malt to the mash. To get more body, you mash at a higher temperature. I only did a few extract (with specialty grains) batches, before one partial mash, and then went all grain. You don't need to get a lot of gear, if you don't want to. A couple of decent sized kettles (for your batch size) and BIAB is a good way to start. Little investment that you can't recover (easily) too. I did BIAB for a while, before going through a couple of cooler mash tuns and then making my keg mash tun.
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