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Old 12-02-2013, 03:29 AM   #1
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Default Russian Imperial Bad or just green?

So, this is my first AG after taking a break from brewing for about 8 years, most partials and extracts.

I had this sitting unopened in the primary for about 5 weeks and everything seemed to be going well. I just opened the primary and checked the finished OG and as is customary I tasted the beer. Not good. I know for sure this was not an infection but it just tasted off.

The taste was kind of thin with ethyl in the middle and a little smoke. It had a kind of old musty flavor and a very slight astringent mouth feel. It didn't seem to have much in the way of body and tasted overly like molasses. I guess that's what I didn't like about it, I can't stand the taste of plain molasses.

The other thing I noticed is that it had more than usual amount of particulates in suspension.

This is the recipe I used: 5Gal


Grist:
Wayerman PAM: 13 lbs
Brit black patent: 1 lbs
Flaked Oats: 1 lbs
Special B: .5 lbs
Smoked Malt: .5 lbs
Brown Sugar: .25 lbs (boil)
Crystal 120L .25 lbs
Melanoidin: .25 lbs
Dark Chocolate: 2oz (End of Boil)

Hope:
Fuggles and Northern Brewer @60 (2oz each)

Yeast:
English Ale Yeast @ 2 units (started)

Single batch sparge @ 158 and rinsed at @168

The only thing that might have happened is my wife called me away on an emergency in the middle of brew day and the mash sat for almost 2 HOURS before sparging

My question is this: What did I do wrong or is this just green?

Should I leave in the keg for a while and taste it again later? Kind of discouraged for my first AG and I was hoping to premier this at my baby girls first birthday party.

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Old 12-02-2013, 03:40 AM   #2
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RIS take a long time to mature. I bet it's just green, give it several months and see where you're at.

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Old 12-02-2013, 03:45 AM   #3
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5 weeks is way short for a RIS, I have one in a secondary that I brewed on 8/22 that I have not tasted yet. Big beer =big time.
When is the littleone's birthday?

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Old 12-02-2013, 03:48 AM   #4
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+1 on it needs LOTS of time.

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Old 12-02-2013, 04:01 AM   #5
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I brew my Thanksgiving RIS in January. I bottle in August. When I start drinking an sharing in November, it almost evaporates. RIS needs a lot of time.

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Old 12-02-2013, 04:09 AM   #6
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It's green. Let it age. Also, keep in mind, carbonation provides more than bubbles. I find the carbonation helps some of the mouth feel (rounds out an otherwise thin beer) and the carbonic acid will transform some of the flavors.

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Old 12-02-2013, 02:47 PM   #7
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Thanks a ton guys. I was almost about to dump it. Little ones birthday is tomorrow and having the big party this weekend. Oh will, I guess I can grab a couple kegs from the local brewery.

I'll check back on my RIS in a few months and see where it's at.

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Old 12-02-2013, 02:54 PM   #8
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Sounds like it will be ready just in time for your little girls second birthday.

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Old 12-02-2013, 03:01 PM   #9
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Lol 2nd birthday it is I guess. I think inn gunna need to find something else to age it in though.

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Old 12-02-2013, 03:36 PM   #10
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I just brewed a Wee Heavy this weekend and the aging cycle I'm planning on for it is 21 days in the Primary, then ~3 months in my secondary, bottle it around March-May, and then try it around Oct.-Dec. I believe RIS have close to the same aging cycle. Big beers like these take a long time to really come into their own, some might not even start to shine until after 1 year has passed.

If you plan on doing Big Beers often I would look into investing into a 5 gal carboy so you can let them sit for months in a dark corner.

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