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Old 08-02-2006, 05:03 PM   #1
perry
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Hey, everyone. I'm trying to get my pale ales and IPA's to taste less sweet... not necessarily lower alcohol, just less of that sweet-tongue feel. I've cut way back on the crystal and cara-pils and I'm mashing in at 150 (dropping to 142 after two hours) but it seems that I'm still getting some residual sugar... more than I want, anyway.

Any suggestions?

Thanks, p

 
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Old 08-02-2006, 05:07 PM   #2
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You're already doing what can be done to get lower FGs--mashing at lower temp, using less crystal, etc.

What yeast strain(s) are you using? You could try a more attenuative yeast strain.

What FGs are you getting and what are you going for? This seems like an odd problem to me--I'm usually more concerned with not letting the FG get too low, which gives most ales a BMC-ish quality to my tastes.
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Old 08-02-2006, 06:03 PM   #3
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Crush a few tablets of beano and toss them in the fermenter. I guarantee you will have dry beer....
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Old 08-02-2006, 06:50 PM   #4
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I'd try the high atten. yeast first. Nottinham for dry. Not sure about liquid. none of wyeast's starins claim to go more than 77% max.

You could also try mashing at 131 - 150 range for 1hr (140 - 150 would be best.) That's almost pure beta range. Then mash at 160 for 15 to make sure everything is converted. If you don't mash at 160 then hold that beta mash for longer. beta works slower.

Alpha runs 154 and up though it will work slowly below that, I'd try 146 for 1.5 hrs and see how that goes.
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Old 08-02-2006, 07:22 PM   #5
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You can mash lower, use adjuncts (corn/rice), less crystal/dextrine malt, use sugar, use a more highly attenuative yeast, hop slightly higher (bittering), carbonate slightly higher. The latter two will create the illusion of a less sweet beer which is often half the battle. I reckon the reason for most sweet tasting beers is that someone has followed a recipe based on a certain number of IBU's, yet their set-up has given them less than intended (which can be down to countless reasons).

Begin by mashing lower, use an attentive yeast and using less crystal.


 
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Old 08-02-2006, 07:35 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mysterio
You can mash lower, use adjuncts (corn/rice), less crystal/dextrine malt, use sugar, use a more highly attenuative yeast, hop slightly higher (bittering), carbonate slightly higher. The latter two will create the illusion of a less sweet beer which is often half the battle. I reckon the reason for most sweet tasting beers is that someone has followed a recipe based on a certain number of IBU's, yet their set-up has given them less than intended (which can be down to countless reasons).

Begin by mashing lower, use an attentive yeast and using less crystal.
I was going to mention several of those also, especially using a tad more bittering hops and some rice syrup. I would also recommend setting in the secondary a bit more to get the FG down under 1.010.
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Old 08-02-2006, 08:09 PM   #7
perry
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Thanks for the feedback. I'm using mostly American Ale, German Ale, and Irish ale yeasts, and getting FG's anywhere from 1.009 to 1.014.

An average batch of pale usually includes 1/2 lb crystal and 1/2 lb cara-pils. Does that seem like a lot, given my goal for drier beers?

Also, I'm generally shooting for 14 to 17 AAU's bittering, but I'm using whole hops and hop sacks, so I may not be getting the full effect.

The carbonation thing is interesting.... I do tend to carb my beers a bit lower, serving and storing at about 10 PSI. I'll try upping that a bit.

 
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Old 08-02-2006, 09:11 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by perry
Thanks for the feedback. I'm using mostly American Ale, German Ale, and Irish ale yeasts, and getting FG's anywhere from 1.009 to 1.014.
That's pretty dry, really. I'd be disappointed if most of the beers I brewed fermented out to 1.009.

I might be tempted to say that whatever quality it is that you're disatisfied with in your beers, I don't necessarily think a lower FG would fix it.
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Old 08-02-2006, 09:45 PM   #9
mysterio
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Definately try more bittering hops, perry.

IBU's are very subjective. The name 'international bittering units' is pretty misleading, like somehow they're objective. Then you have the question of the BU:GU ratio. Remember bitterness is primarily there to balance sweetness. 50 IBU's may be too bitter in a light lager but too sweet in an IPA. Hop sacks and whole hops will both be pulling your bitterness down - that's not to say they're bad methods, just use more.


 
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Old 08-02-2006, 10:52 PM   #10
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I was going to suggest making sure you pitch adequate yeast (do a big starter) and making sure to aerate really well, but those FG ranges are about spot on, especially considering the yeasts you mention. In that case I definately put in a vote for more bittering hops. This should balance out the sweetness and it should be percieved less in that case. What were your OGs for those ranges? Remember for a beer like an IPA you want BU:GU (bitterness:grain units) of right around 1.

 
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