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Old 09-21-2009, 12:37 PM   #11

Sorry dude I thought I explained myself. Your OP is confusing. You talk about an Imperial white, then later you're talking braggot. It's your beer and if that's what you want, go for it. I was simply trying to HELP you make a Sam Adams Imperial White. My opinion is there are better ways of doing it but YMMV.
I have made a Belgian Triple with 22% sugar (you're over 32%). It was bone dry but appropriate for the style. As stated I have done a wheatwine with no sugar or honey. This is basically what I thought you were doing. I have also done plenty of meads with a boatload of honey. Never done a braggot though. You asked how it's gonna taste and I just gave my opinion.
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Old 09-21-2009, 04:09 PM   #12
Feb 2009
Roswell, GA
Posts: 215

I typed this entry over 2 days (my computer died and I didn't feel like finding the power cord),
and I meant to include the Terrapin Gamma Ray information in the OP.

Essentially, here's what I MEANT to write:

I'm drinking a Sam Adams Imperial White and am liking it. I've also heard about the Terrapin Gamma Ray,
which is apparently a standard wheat beer with a crapload of honey added.
The two styles seem to have some similarities,
and it seems like I could maybe achieve the Gamma Ray using a batch I currently have in progress.

So... (and on it goes)

Anyway, I didn't mean to be confusing. I see now why we had our wires crossed.

This may be , but I have a question about the difference between a Wheat Wine
and an "Imperial" Hefeweizen (even though that style doesn't technically exist).

If I want to go from IPA to IIPA, I don't simply add more malt, right?
Apparently, adding straight malt to an IPA gives you more of a BW than an IIPA.
So, to get to an IIPA, you add more simple sugars (table sugar, corn sugar, belgian candi sugar, honey?).

Therefore, if you're thinking about getting from a Hefe to a
Wheat Wine or an I-Hefe, would the same logic apply?

Any-hoo, thanks for looking and answering!!!

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Old 09-21-2009, 04:37 PM   #13
Nov 2008
Chapel Hill, North Carolina
Posts: 743
Liked 9 Times on 8 Posts

I would disagree with your premise that the difference between an IIPA and a barley wine is extra malt versus sugar. Some IIPAs have a little sugar to dry them out, but my guess is that most of them are all malt but just use malts with not too much sweetness (just a little crystal & light crystal at that) and are mashed quite low (148F-152F) whereas barleywines tend to have more dark crystal & are mashed higher.

For an Imperial Hefe, the question is, do you want a very light body like an IIPA or a richer body like a barleywine? The light body emphasizes the hops in an IIPA & the thicker body emphasizes the malt in a barleywine. What is unique about a Hefeweizen that you want to emphasize in a suped up version?
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Old 09-21-2009, 04:56 PM   #14

To me an Imperial Hefe is a german wheat beer made much stronger than the standard hefe. A wheatwine (my recipe is in the Strong Ale recipe section) is a barleywine made with 40-50% wheat and an OG in the 1.000 range. It's typically not made with a wheat yeast because these yeasts typically can't handle it.

A wheatwine can use lots of hops because it's got some body behind it (malt, crystal, etc). A hefe doesn't have much body and uses very little hops. A hefe made into an Imperial using sugar will be a very thin and dry beer with a prominent alcohol taste.

As for converting an IPA to a IIPA you can use malt or sugar. They usually have malty backbones. Sugar/honey is used to dry the beer out and accentuate the hops. If you add just malt it will be a little sweeter and have even more body to it. Some like dry IIPA's and some like them on the sweeter side.

Hope this helps...
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Old 09-21-2009, 05:05 PM   #15
Feb 2009
Roswell, GA
Posts: 215

Here's where I got the idea that an IIPA had simple sugars (I posted an IIPA recipe with all malt):
Originally Posted by Denny View Post
Especially with extract, you need some sugar in there to reduce the body. Otherwise, you're making a BW, not IIPA.
I guess I see now that his issue was not the ingredients but the body.

What do I want to emphasize? I dunno. I'm really just kinda screwing around.
I haven't been brewing for even a year yet, so I'm still just trying a whole bunch of different stuff out.

Right now, I've got the following fermenting:
1. cider
2. apfelwein
3. bread yeast cider
4. berry cider
6. English Bitter
7. Cream ale - and -
8. rum

Will they all turn out well? I think the odds are against me. Will I learn from these experiements? I hope so.

If all goes well with this batch, I'll get:
1. Hefe esters, particularly banana
2. 8-9% ABV
3. limited/no "hot" alcohol flavor (after aging)
4. a tasty drink

If not, this was a cheap batch and the honey didn't add a ton of cost.

So far, I've only thrown away 1 batch (even with experiments) and it smelled and tasted like feet. All of my others have come out at least drinkable, if not delicious.

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Old 09-25-2009, 03:31 PM   #16
Feb 2009
Roswell, GA
Posts: 215

Update on this batch:

Well, I added the honey in two separate stages.

Last Saturday, fermentation was clearly slowing down on the original Hefeweizen brew. The kraeusen had fallen and airlock activity was slower.

At that time, I added 2.5 lbs. of honey and enough water to make a total of 1/2 gallon.

Fermentation took off again with a VENGEANCE!!! Although my total batch size was now just 4.5 gallons and I am fermenting in a 6+ gallon wine carboy, the new kraeusen reached up to the airlock.

After about 4 days, fermentation was again declining, kraeusen was falling and airlock activity was slowing down.

I repeated the procedure, adding another 2.5 lbs. of honey in a total of 1/2 gallon of must.

Now my total batch size is 5 gallons, fermentation took off again and this time the kraeusen reached into my blow off.

At this point, a fairly active fermentation is still ongoing, but the kraeusen is falling again.

All looks to be going well.

The best part to me, though, is that when I have smelled the opening of the gallon jug serving as my blow-off, I get an EXTREMELY strong aroma of bananas.

This is the main aroma that I really love in a Hefeweizen, so I am very pleased to have retained this profile in my new creation. In fact, this seems to have gotten stronger as the honey has been added and fermented.

So, it seems to me that I am still heading toward my somewhat vague target.

Plus, I'm really, really pleased with the Danstart Munich Wheat dry yeast. I had heard that you don't get a banana profile from this yeast, but that seems not to be true in my case.


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