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Old 02-22-2009, 05:55 AM   #1
ChshreCat
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Aug 2008
Camano Island, Washington
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I just put a redux of my Brown Biscuit ale in the fermenter tonight and started thinking. It's a very tasty brown ale, but with the biscuit malt and special B in there... this would probably be good with a Belgian yeast. Maybe a little sugar.

That got me wondering. How often do folks play with their recipes and bend them into different styles as opposed to doing whole new recipes?

It seems to make sense. If you think you have something good to start with, why not use it as a base and change parts of it?

I know it won't work to do everything you want. Beer styles are just too varied. But it was just something that was bouncing around in my head.


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Old 02-22-2009, 01:21 PM   #2
Bob
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Christiansted, St Croix, USVI, US Virgin Islands
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Really often. Really, really often.

As I quoted in my article on American Amber Ale on the HBT Wiki:

"Add some 80L crystal to Sierra Nevada Pale Ale and you not only have a different beer, but a different style of beer." [emphasis mine]

One of the easiest ways to change something is to change the yeast, as you've noted. WY3787 instead of WY1056 will make a drastic change! In your case, changing to Trappist or Ardennes yeast will make your Brown Ale an Oud Bruin (well, Dubbel).

I brewed an Enkel Bier (Belgian-style Single) once at a brewpub for which I was brewing. It was their house light beer (Pils with a touch of Vienna, hopped with Saazer), fermented with leftover 3787. That's it! That's the only change. People thought I was a Gawd for developing this light, crisp but definitely Belgian ale. I beamed beneficently and thanked them.

I'd rather bend an established recipe into something different - substituting ingredients, mainly - than try to design a completely new recipe.

Cheers,

Bob


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Old 02-24-2009, 08:57 PM   #3
ChshreCat
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I figured I wasn't the only one who's mind wanders in that direction. I find myself doing this when just reading recipes in books. Thinking "But... what if I did THIS with it... or maybe THAT?"
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Old 02-24-2009, 10:32 PM   #4
Bob
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Yeah, you're not. I usually find my mind wanders into the Yeast section of the store, wondering what Fuller's London Pride would taste like if it were fermented with Roselare...

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Old 02-24-2009, 11:04 PM   #5
KingBrianI
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May 2008
Durham, NC
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I've been planning on making significant use of a saison yeast once temperatures warm up. Instead of fighting the temperature, let it work for you, I say. APAs, IPAs, cream ales, blonde ales, whatever strikes my fancy, will be fermented with saison yeast. Should make for an interesting twist.


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