Hello Brewers -
I have a phenomenon going on with my beer, and I am trying to tie it back to somewhere in my process. I have been doing some reading on "Over pitching" since I do tend to pitch probably twice the amount that Mr. Malty specifies. This would be liquid (with starters) or Us-05 for dry. With liquid, my starter was usually 2x the size of what is recommended and for dry, it's usually 2 11g packets re-hydrated.
Just one example: I recently brewed Janet's brown ale, and noticed that even though it finished high, it's really not that sweet. 1.069 (refractometer w/o yeast) -1.022 (hydrometer). I used 2 packets of the US-05 re-hydrated and fermented at 65/66. I mashed at 157 and finished at 154 after 60 min. The beer tastes a bit thin for that amount of specialty malt. It also has a bit of harsh aftertaste, both which are a running theme in my beers. I feel like I have to use about half the amount of bittering hops a recipe specifies or it has astringent like qualities. I followed the recipe as written except for the mash temp. Here are my water numbers:
Calcium (ppm) Magnesium (ppm) Sodium (ppm) Sulfate (ppm) Chloride (ppm) Bicarbonate (ppm)
Existing Water Profile 50 3 17 87 20 72
Finished Water Profile 64 3 17 87 46 34
Recommended Ranges 50 to 150 5 to 30 0 to 150 0 to 350 0 to 100 as needed
Batch Volume (gal) 6.00 Hardness (ppm as CaCO3) 173 RA (ppm as CaCO3) -19
Estimated Mash pH 5.3 Alkalinity (ppm as CaCO3) 28 SO4/Cl Ratio 1.91
I measured the mash PH, and it ended up being 5.3 with a calibrated meter.
So my question to the community is: Is over pitching causing my beers to be overly bitter and thin?
I have done some research and it seems like the answer depends on who you ask.
Here's an experiment that supports my findings:
Here's one that refutes it:
Gordon Strong in Brewing Better Beer page 131 and he states: "For a normal strength beer (1.050) I typically add two dry packets, and add another packet for every 25 gravity points." This seems to be in line with the amount that I pitch. Granted, he does not gravitate to hoppy beers. I wouldn't think this would be a practice he would partake if the resulting beer could be better.
Any experiences would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!