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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > Priming sugar and other questions
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Old 11-24-2011, 05:23 AM   #1
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Default Priming sugar and other questions

Does priming sugar change the bitterness of the beer?

I have a 5 gallon batch of irish red ale from northern brewer that has just spent 4 weeks in primary. I took a hydrometer reading, and it's at 1.010. I tasted the beer from the hydrometer reading. It was pretty nice tasting up front, followed by a very strong bitterness. There's only 2 ounces of hops in the beer, and I added them according to the hop schedule. I also steeped the specialty grains until the water in my brew pot reached 170 F. Will this bitterness go away? What could have caused it?

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Old 11-24-2011, 06:13 AM   #2
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First thing that pops to mind is: did you squeeze the grain bag out after steeping? Doing so releases pleasant little bastards called tannins (yes, same tannins found in red wine) which can cause a bitter/astringent aftertaste.

Aging can reduce the bitter punch quite a bit.

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Old 11-24-2011, 06:14 AM   #3
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I actually didn't even squeeze it. I did hang it above the batch for a second to let the liquid inside seep out, then I discarded it.

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Old 11-24-2011, 06:26 AM   #4
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Hmm...irregardless, I wouldn't worry too much about it. Hydro samples are "OK" as flavor indicators go, but nothing to judge the entire batch over. As I mentioned, aging and conditioning will more than likely mellow out the bitter aftertaste.

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Primary: Nada
Secondary: The Plinian Legacy (NB clone of Pliny the Elder)
Bottled/Fridge: Firestone Easy Jack IPA
Bombers/Growlers/Aging: Firestone 17th & 18th Anniversary ales
Kegerator: Uinta Hop Notch IPA
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Old 11-24-2011, 06:43 AM   #5
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cool cool. Also, at this point the beer is pretty cloudy. Granted, the sample is coming from the bottom of the fermenter (bucket style with tap). I used whirlfloc, so I am hoping it will clear up in the bottles

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Old 11-24-2011, 06:55 AM   #6
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bitterness will mellow with age... beer s still green give it it a few weeks? what was the hop & AA%

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Old 11-24-2011, 07:06 AM   #7
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There's a few things you can do for cloudiness:

-Transfer to a secondary fermenter (if you haven't tried this yet, you basically rack everything but the sediment from your primary into another fermenter & let it continue to settle out)

-You can also cold crash your bottles. A few days after bottling, pop them in a cold fridge and let them sit for a few weeks to a month or more. This lets the sediment collect in more solid "chunks" in the base of each bottle, but doing so takes longer for the beer to carbonate.

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Old 11-24-2011, 07:17 AM   #8
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Yeah I have heard that you don't really need secondary to have a clear beer. My plan is to bottle, let the beers carbonate, then put them in the fridge for 2 days before I drink them. (I'll probably start trying one every other day or so after 2 weeks of carbonating)

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Old 11-24-2011, 04:07 PM   #9
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I condition bottle beers in covered boxes at room temp for an average of 4 weeks. But 5 weeks for an average gravity ale can be better yet,like an APA or IPA in my case. They seemed to peak at about 5 weeks. Then at least one week fridge time to get past chill haze,& get co2 into solution well. 2 weeks is even better for thicker head & longer lasting carbonation.
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Old 11-24-2011, 07:27 PM   #10
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Hops: Willamette and US Goldings, 1 oz each

My question was just what can happen to the flavor and could the bitterness mellow significantly? Even at its current bitterness it would be drinkable by the time it finishes, but it wouldn't be *great*.

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