Originally Posted by brettwasbtd
Whats going on with the carapils and sucrose? They seem like they are used for the exact oppossite reasons: one for more body, the other for less... couldn't you decrease the carapils and not use the sucrose? Im confused at this combo
Here's how it makes sense to me:
CaraPils = body without flavor; contributes to mouthfeel, but not a lot to malt backbone. Head-retention characteristics of crystal.
Sugar = providing alcohol without contributing to backbone. Lighter body, but only because it provides alcohol. More of a gentle balancing act than adding X-amount of sugar to equal X-amount of lightness.
The two things they have in common are contributing to the character of the beer without adding maltiness. I think where it gets confusing is when we think of sucrose and dextrins as being on opposite ends of the same "body" spectrum. Body isn't always easily defineable, at least not to me. I'm not looking for any dominate malt notes with this recipe, so the dextrin malt is great for making a lighter-bodied, but not thin, beer. In its absence you'd use either more 2-row or crystal (more or different flavor) or more sugar (more alcohol, possibly sweetness). And I'm not looking for either a lot of malt flavor (definitely not cloying crystal) or much sweetness or booze.
Vinnie lists Carapils second when relating the simplicity of a DIPA grain bill, and it's used in the actual Pliny recipe, along with sugar. Of course, the proportion of Carapils in this recipe is much higher (11.7%) than it is in the 5-gallon Pliny recipe (4%). So as to the final effect, I'll have to wait and see.