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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > How do you go about developing/choosing a recipe??
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Old 10-20-2008, 07:25 PM   #1
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Default How do you go about developing/choosing a recipe??

Now I am sure this has been brought up in bits in pieces over time, but I thought I would give it a shot.

So for all of you out there, what is your plan of attack when starting a new brew?? Do you find a recipe you would like to make and just hope you can get ahold of the ingredients?? Do you scope out your local brew shops inventory and base the recipe off of that??

Some may use BeerSmith or other programs, some may go old school with pin and paper.

Please share!

Cheers!

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Old 10-20-2008, 07:33 PM   #2
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Well, there are several differents ways I develop a recipe. Sometimes I'll see a recipe here on HBT, and I'll think it looks good and I'll try it. Or, I think- hey, it's getting colder outside, I want to make a winter style beer and try to find one online. Just the other day, I was thinking about a malty pale ale. So, I'm making my own recipe, but asking you guys for input. So, it really depends on the situation.

I always use Beersmith for the recipes, though.

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Old 10-20-2008, 07:35 PM   #3
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I use beersmith as well.

For my last 2 batches, I found a few recipes that I liked for what I was trying to make, combined the parts that looked good, and used the wizardry of BeerSmith to convert it to my size of boil and my late addition extract method.

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Old 10-20-2008, 07:43 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SchmidtyBeer View Post
Some may use BeerSmith or other programs, some may go old school with pin and paper.
I usually use a pen..pin may hurt i enjoy right now kits or ideas from people on the forums...once i get into AG i think ill make up my own..so 2 years...once grad school is over. till then ill just fill up with knowledge
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Old 10-20-2008, 07:49 PM   #5
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  1. decide on a style
  2. read guides for style
  3. look for recipes on HBT and other internet sources
  4. listen to Jamil's podcast for that style
  5. Write down a basic recipe based on all of the sources I referenced
  6. create the recipe in beersmith
  7. decide if my percentages are right for ingredients/adjuncts
  8. decide if I would like to add or omit any ingredients
  9. look up hop schedules on different recipes
  10. make a hop schedule through beersmith based on style guides or how hoppy/balanced I want the beer
  11. tweak the recipe after doing more research
  12. tweak the recipe on what is available at LHBS

This is a pretty common procedure I go through to make a recipe. I have a lot of constants. For example, I always use Maris Otter as a base malt. I almost always use Wyeast 1056 for any ale.
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Old 10-20-2008, 08:04 PM   #6
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Start simply, move slowly, pay attention, and brew. If you start simply and change one thing at a time in your recipe, you will learn how the different ingredients and techniques affect the final beer. Take detailed notes on your ingredients and techniques, so that you do not run into that "now, what'd I do" situation when you get a good beer. Detailed tasting notes also help you go back and find "that one" later on. Of course, the more you brew that way, the better you'll get at it!

Brewing software is great for tinkering around with recipes and for making adjustments on the fly. I've enjoyed both ProMash and BeerSmith. I also keep a paper copy of my recipe and a pen handy to jot down notes as I go along.


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Old 10-20-2008, 08:26 PM   #7
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I'm normally working 4 batches in the future and 1st decide on NEW beer or repeat beer. (Typically everyone batch now is a repeat).

If it's a repeat I'll change ONE thing if it needs tweaking.
If it's new I look at a style that I have not had or a style I have not liked in my brewign yet.

Then - I just look at magazines, books or here and look at the ingredients. I never have brewed anything yet that was not endorsed by someone I have never seen or heard of (no random internet recipes).

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Old 10-20-2008, 08:27 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edcculus View Post
  1. decide on a style
  2. read guides for style
  3. look for recipes on HBT and other internet sources
  4. listen to Jamil's podcast for that style
  5. Write down a basic recipe based on all of the sources I referenced
  6. create the recipe in beersmith
  7. decide if my percentages are right for ingredients/adjuncts
  8. decide if I would like to add or omit any ingredients
  9. look up hop schedules on different recipes
  10. make a hop schedule through beersmith based on style guides or how hoppy/balanced I want the beer
  11. tweak the recipe after doing more research
  12. tweak the recipe on what is available at LHBS
I usually do that, except I don't like to look up recipes. I'm a shoot from the hip kind of guy, so I like to choose ingredients based on the style guidelines, but maintaining my personal flavor and aroma preferences. Once I get the numbers right, I typically (lol, I say typically like I've been doing this for years) don't change anything unless I get a really good idea for a flavor or I might decide to dry hop when I originally wasn't going to.
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Old 10-20-2008, 08:37 PM   #9
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Look up my inventory to see what is on hand, open BeerSmith and start playing. Maybe I will open DGB if I have a taste for a style I haven't brewed yet. then I decide if I need to take a trip to LHBS for certain things or just go set-up the brewery.

I usually decide my recipe the night before, shop in the morning, and start brewing before noon.

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Old 10-20-2008, 08:40 PM   #10
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If you are looking to brew a particular style I can't say enough about "Brewing Classic Styles" by JZ and JP. This will give you a very good base to make your own recipe for a particular style.

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