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Old 04-08-2012, 02:20 PM   #1
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Default Undershot OG, want a little more ABV

I undershot a bitter recipe I was making and got an OG of about 1.032. Based on where I should end up, I will have about 2.5 to 3.0 ABV with my finished product. I would like to know if it is possible to get another half percent ABV by adding some kind of sugar - table sugar, confectioner sugar or dextrose at some point to the pimary. Curious to hear some thoughts.

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Old 04-08-2012, 02:27 PM   #2
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Add some DME slurry and see what happens. Use the same style DME as your brew and you raise the ABV by about 1 for every pound you add. That could get you up to 4 or 5 % pretty easilly and with only adding 2 or 3 ponds of DME. Just a thought.
Bob

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Old 04-08-2012, 02:47 PM   #3
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And if I've got no DME on hand, and were to go about it with simple sugar syrups, what ABV can I expect out of X amount of a sugar, and which sugar should I use to get the best results taste and gravity wise?

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Old 04-08-2012, 03:49 PM   #4
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Was this an extract beer? It is almost impossible to under-shoot your target gravity with an extract beer. Often bad hydrometer readings are due to the syrups not being completely mixed. If the sample is taken from the top, it will read low, if the sample is taken from the bottom, it will read high.

I do not advise adding lots of simple sugars if it is not per the style/recipe. It will dry the beer out (lower FG), make the beer thinner (less flavor), with a possible harsh alcohol taste. Sugar has it's place, and some beers use 20%+ of simple sugars.

To answer your question: 1 lb of table sugar in 5 gallons will increase the effective OG by .009, and increase the abv by about 1.4%.

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Old 04-08-2012, 03:54 PM   #5
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i asked the same question. dme or sugar. the sugar will make your beer real dry though. I would use corn sugar. table sugar will give your beer weird flavors.

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Old 04-09-2012, 02:04 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brockettbrews View Post
i asked the same question. dme or sugar. the sugar will make your beer real dry though. I would use corn sugar. table sugar will give your beer weird flavors.
Have you ever had any 'weird' flavors from using table sugar? I use it a lot, in some Belgians it can get up to about 25% of the fermentables, and I have never had a problem.

You will find no difference between corn sugar and table sugar, except corn sugar will cost you twice as much, and you can't rush out to the local store to get it.
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Old 04-09-2012, 02:31 AM   #7
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That was the reason I suggested DME so that the beer mouthfeel and body would stay intact and avoid the possible negative effects on the final taste and outcome. I have zero experience, but all the data I have read points to DME as the best solution out of Corn, Table and DME. I always try to keep a bit of whatever ingredients I am using so I can grow the yeast in a compatible starter and address issuse such as this. Ilearned this habit in chem at college. Always try to keep enough to repeat the experiment if you have to. But..... I am also a hoarder/pack rat too,so this behaviour is normal for me. Hope this helps explain why I suggested the DME instead of table or corn sugar. Have fun and enjoy.
" Rockin the wheel chair Bob"

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