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Old 04-20-2012, 04:13 AM   #1
Apr 2012
Whittier, CA
Posts: 61
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

im very new at homebrewing. I started right away with all grain, and I have made 3 successful batches, much to my surprise!!!

On my 4th, I made a belgian wit. I followed a recipe i found online, which called for belgian 2 row, oats, flaked wheat, rice hulls, corriander and orange zest (which i grated from a fresh orange).

Well, the primary is pretty much finished now... Im going to rack it in 2 days, but i sampled a little bit today...and although the spice is right on the money (tastes almost exactly like hoegaarden) is lacking in body... its almost like a watery beer, with the aroma and spicy taste of a hoegaarden...

I was reading around to see what i can possibly do...and as i am new to this, i considered the following:

1. boil up some sugar and add it to the secondary? or primary? dont rack and leave sugar in?

2. DME????

3. Cut my losses and just leave as is????

I just really need to give it a good "kick" in the "beer" i think the spices are already good.


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Old 04-20-2012, 04:25 AM   #2
Dec 2010
Abilene, Texas
Posts: 335
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Leave it be. Anything you do now can ruin what you have. Did you mash low?

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Old 04-20-2012, 06:49 AM   #3
daksin's Avatar
Aug 2011
San Diego, CA
Posts: 4,617
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The body will come around with a bit of age, but CARBONATION is the #1 thing that influences mouthfeel. Give this thing another week on the yeast, any secondary you're doing, if any, and then carb that beer up. I guarantee you it will be fuller bodied than you expect.
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Old 04-20-2012, 11:23 AM   #4
dinnerstick's Avatar
Nov 2010
utrecht, netherlands
Posts: 2,019
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Originally Posted by daksin View Post
The body will come around with a bit of age, but CARBONATION is the #1 thing that influences mouthfeel. Give this thing another week on the yeast, any secondary you're doing, if any, and then carb that beer up. I guarantee you it will be fuller bodied than you expect.
+1 to this. i have made a grad total of 1 (one) witbier in my moderately industrious life, so admittedly i'm not hugely experienced in that realm.... but mine tasted flabby and thin after fermentation, more yeasty than anything else, but cold and carbed to between 2.5 and 3 vol it's lively with spice, refreshing (chuggable) and has just the right mouthfeel

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Old 04-20-2012, 01:15 PM   #5
Sep 2010
Clifton, NJ
Posts: 233
Liked 11 Times on 9 Posts

As I've started to use more Belgian yeasts, I've run into exactly this problem; so far, bottle conditioning/carbonation has fixed it in every case. I now suspect that you just can't judge how a Belgian beer turned out until after a month or so of bottle conditioning.

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Old 04-20-2012, 02:12 PM   #6
homebrewdad's Avatar
Jan 2012
Birmingham, AL
Posts: 3,275
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Time is the answer. I read dozens of these threads every week that have to do with perceived faults in beer that the author realizes is not yet done. Green beer - ESPECIALLY uncarbed green beer - does not equal what the final beer will taste like.

It's fun to drink gravity reading samples, but sometimes, I wonder if it doesn't just make newbies worry for no good reason.

Bottle/keg this beer, give it a few weeks to carb up, THEN worry about what you could have done differently if you still think it isn't good.
Check out the priming sugar calculator, yeast starter calculator, and the beer calorie calculator.

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Old 04-20-2012, 02:15 PM   #7
sjbeerman's Avatar
Jan 2011
San Jose, CA
Posts: 302
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I'm surprised no one has asked this already but what was your yeast strain and mash temp? Also, for Belgians I usually prefer pils as the base malt, but that has nothing to do with mouth feel.
Primary: Belgian Dark Strong
Secondary: EMPTY
Bottled: Belgian Saison Noel, Chocolate Porter, Raspberry Wheat

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Old 04-20-2012, 02:16 PM   #8
Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc
Revvy's Avatar
Dec 2007
"Detroitish" Michigan
Posts: 40,938
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It seems to lack body because it's not's still in the fermenter.

Until a beer is actually carbed up you really don't know how much body it really has. Co2 adds that feeling of fullness to the beer. Think about soda in a fountain dispenser, like at your favorite fast food joint. You ever pull some that wasn't carbed? It was thin and watery, not because the mix of liquids was off, but because the gas was not saturating the liquid.

You can't really judge a beer until it's carbed and conditioned fully, so there's no point in stressing out about anything you notice this early in the game.
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Old 04-20-2012, 02:20 PM   #9
Pilgarlic's Avatar
Feb 2010
Tampa Bay, Florida
Posts: 1,330
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I'm working with a couple of other guys exploring Wits and how to improve them. We brewed together last weekend and, while brewing, sampled a couple of our past efforts. They had one that was lacking body and mouthfeel... and carbonation. Mine, by comparison, had been bottle conditioned in champagne bottles to about 4 vols. The perceived mouthfeel and body were wonderful. So, we swirled and decarbed a sample of mine to judge home much of the difference was carbonation. Without the carbonation, mine was as thin and lifeless as theirs. I'm looking for a carb level in a wit that causes the beer to "expand in your mouth" when you take a mouthful, giving you a sensation of body and fullness that, in reality, is mostly bubbly effervescence.

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Old 04-20-2012, 02:21 PM   #10
Nov 2010
Backwardsville, Canada
Posts: 169
Liked 16 Times on 11 Posts

Body/mouthfeel are tough to gauge until the beer is carbonated. RDWHAHB!

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