Red Chimay vs my plain old dubbel - Home Brew Forums
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Old 08-12-2012, 02:53 AM   #1
May 2012
Wash, DC
Posts: 1,236
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So I made a dubbel. Well, I made several until I was happy with the outcome. This was my entry into all grain. I was able to get through it even though I learned a few batches later about mashing (I actually still dont know much about mashing 14 batches later)...

So this red Chimay which is the 'lightest' of the chimay at 7%... well first of all it tastes amazing.

But also it renders my perfectly 'good' dubbel (no offtastes tough maybe a little too alcoholic) plain plain plain... tasteless.

One of the main characteristics of the red IMO is a complex balance of caramel maltiness and other things. My dubbel was fermenting for 3 weeks and aging for 3 weeks.... then carbbed for 3 weeks. I opened one bottle even though they are meant for christmas time; 6 months in the bottle. I don't want to risk oxidation but I do want the maltiness to emerge.....

My dubbel grain bill was US 2-row instead of pilsner, though this i assume is just another taste; it doesn't not impede from having mature complexity....

I'm sure the red hold many secrets but I guess I only want to foresee the effects of aging in bottles; to have realistic expectations.

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Old 08-12-2012, 10:22 AM   #2
Dec 2009
Posts: 1,883
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Recipe recipe recipe! I'm sure there was more in it than 2-row. What else is in yours? What hops? What yeast? What methods?

Do some googling, I'm sure you can find lots of recipes for dubbels, and many for Chimay red. When you find what looks like a good one, don't go subbing ingredients. As with anything that can be described as "amazing" and "complex," details matter. A lot.

"Anything worth doing, is worth doing slowly." ~~ Mae West

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Old 08-12-2012, 03:32 PM   #3
hogwash's Avatar
Aug 2008
Waynesboro, VA
Posts: 719
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First, I'm thinking you should probably get to understand the mash, mash efficiency, etc. if you're brewing all-grain. Palmer's online How To Brew is free and contains great information on this.

Second, barring efficiency issues and not understanding the mash, you should probably use continental pilsner (belgian pilsner, preferably) for your belgians. 2-row is an american malt and will yield a different beer. But yeah, we need to see the whole recipe and your entire process in order to help out much more.

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Old 08-12-2012, 03:36 PM   #4
lowtones84's Avatar
Oct 2011
Montclair, New Jersey
Posts: 1,936
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Yeah, other malts and specialty grains are important, as is yeast, sugar, and a whole bunch of other variables. But I would bet that using pilsener, particularly Belgian instead of US 2 row would make a significant difference. Also, any Chimay product is a world class beer, so don't get too down on yourself Like frazier said, you can find plenty of recipes on this forum and elsewhere on the internet.

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