Yesterday was bottling day for my 2nd brew ever and I'm very pleased with how my beer has turned out so far! This is the hefty sample I allotted myself to sip on while bottling it up:
It's very sweet and fruity, with notes of brown sugar and just a light bite of ginger on the finish- very tasty and drinkable which is great! However, the recipe I followed was an extract Belgian wit recipe... As you can plainly see from the pic my beer looks NOTHING like a wit and def has some flavors to it I hadn't planned on (namely fruit and brown sugar). I don't think I "ruined" my beer by any means, it tastes fantastic, but I'm rather curious about why it came out so differently from what I had intended. I'll list the recipe and then the steps I took up to the point of bottling and hopefully I can get some feedback from you experienced guys as to what would have been more optimal for it to have come out more like a wit.
6 gal water
6.6 lbs 40%wheat / 60% barley LME (75 mins)
3.3 lbs 100% wheat LME + 3.3 lbs light pilsner LME (75 mins)
.75 oz tettnanger hops (60 mins)
.75 oz Saaz hops (60 mins)
.25 oz Saaz hops (end of boil)
.25 oz crushed coriander (end of boil)
.25 oz bitter orange peel (end of boil)
Pinch of "secret spice" (end of boil)
Wyeast 3944 Belgian wit
It's a pretty simple and straightforward recipe. Here's how I prepared it, following John Palmers online text as my guide:
I boiled 3 gallons of water and then poured in my fermenter to cool. I then boiled the remaining 3 gallons.
I added in 6.6 pounds of Briess wheat malt (60%wheat / 40% barley) and boiled for 15 mins.
I added both the tettnanger and Saaz bittering hops.
For a stronger spicy bite at the finish I tossed in the aroma hops and spices at 10 mins left of the boil, and I upped the orange peel and coriander to .5 oz instead of .25 oz. For the "secret spice" i used grated fresh ginger, which I guesstimated was about .25 oz.
I ice bathed the wort to 80 degrees, splashed it into the fermenter (leaving as much solids as I could in the pot), pitched my yeast, and gently stirred a few times before closing the lid and storing it away to my closet where it sat between 68-72 degrees for 2 weeks.
And now we come to bottling day, the krausen had dropped and the beer smelt deliciously sweet. But somehow it turned out dark amber in color and had surprising notes of brown sugar. The only readily apparent taste coming through (that I had intended) was the touch of ginger on the finish. Not a bad ale by any means, but certainly NOT a Belgian wit.
I feel like i did everything right, except for maybe have taken a one or two peeks inside the bucket to check on it during fermentation. The only other thing that I can really think of is I possibly didn't let it sit in the fermenter enough? I'm guessing I should've given it another week or 2 in the primary before attempting to bottle it. Other than that I really have no clue how the beer could've turned out so vastly different from what the recipe said it would be..