Fortifying with Grain Alcohol

Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

Rudeboy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 19, 2007
Messages
263
Reaction score
4
Location
Edmonton, Alberta
OK first of all I’m not an alcoholic. I do plenty of small session beers.

But I was looking for a big Bock for spring and through a series of disastrous moves my temps were way off this weekend and I only ended up with a 1.050 OG instead of something like 1.067. As such my ABV will be much lower than expected.

I realize that ABV is not the only thing in a big beer and it must be balanced with the other tastes but aside from that, what do you think of the proposition of adding some Everclear to the finished beer before carbonation to boost the ABV closer to where I was aiming.

Thanks
Rudeboy
 

Sir Humpsalot

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Nov 26, 2006
Messages
3,996
Reaction score
93
Just add a pound or two of boiled DME.

Or, if time is of the essence, steep a 2 pounds of carapils with a pound of 2-row and add it into the carboy. It will add very little additional fermentable wort, but will add to the maltiness so the everclear doesn't dominate the thin beer.

And, honestly, I'd rather add vodka because it is a purer, better distilled, product IMHO.

And, honestly, I'd rather just add more DME.
 

HBDrinker008

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 6, 2007
Messages
125
Reaction score
2
I think DME would be a better route to take than Everclear. Alcohol taste in beer fades with aging alcohol taste in vodka does not.
 

Reverend JC

2500 gallons year to date
Joined
Jun 30, 2006
Messages
1,878
Reaction score
3
Location
Your Mom's
if alcohol is all you are after then just boil up some beet sugar or even table sugar and add it. that would be a hell of alot better than adding everclear.
 
OP
R

Rudeboy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 19, 2007
Messages
263
Reaction score
4
Location
Edmonton, Alberta
OK it went in the Lagering Chest yesterday so do I still have time.

If so the procedure would be boil up a couple of pounds of DME tonight. Use as little water as possible to make it as high a OG as possible. (any ideas on a ratio) Cool it to the lagering temp and add to Carboy. Is that right?

I have extra light DME and Amber. For an ordinary Bock 50/50?

Thanks

Rudeboy
 

Joker

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 13, 2007
Messages
1,951
Reaction score
36
Location
Orygun
Use the Everclear as a chaser, rather then putting it into the brew.
 
OP
R

Rudeboy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 19, 2007
Messages
263
Reaction score
4
Location
Edmonton, Alberta
krispy d said:
this can't end well...
Ya I'm getting that feeling too. I'm on the fence (if you can be on a three sided fence) between:
1) RDWHAHB. It will still come out around 5.25% ABV. Hopefully drinkable if not instyle or what I was looking for.

2)Try and add the DME to come closer to style.

3)Toss it down the drain and start again this weekend. This might be the way to go in that I got into this whole thing because 8 months ago I couldn't find a Bock for spring. Don't want to have to wait for spring '09 to taste a proper one. Two this is my first Lager and I don't want to wait the three months or so taking up the Lagering Chest just to toss it down the drain then. Also it tasted kinda astringent to me not sure if that was the hops or my imagination or excess tannins. What temp does tannin extration become an issue. Unfortunately my LHBS had f'all for yeast when I was there a couple of weeks ago.

Any further advice in regards to the DME. Amounts, how much I could hope to raise the OG.

Thanks

Rudeboy
 
Joined
Jul 24, 2006
Messages
14,262
Reaction score
777
Location
Southwest
#1 - certainly a viable option...and potentially the best.

#2 - the other viable option...and not a bad one.

#3 - PLEASE don't dump your beer!!!

Tannins become a problem with high temperatures (above 170) for extended periods of time. Unless you really screwed the pooch on your mash, I doubt you have a problem.
 

joshpooh

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 18, 2007
Messages
326
Reaction score
1
I agree with Yuri even the Everclear as bad of an idea as it was would be better than dumping your beer. I would do option 1 and drink as is though. I would rather have a good beer that isn't in style than mess with it and create a bad beer. That said the DME idea would probably turn out ok, but why risk it.

Learn from the mistake for next time.
 

Mikeus

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 28, 2007
Messages
55
Reaction score
1
Location
Bentonville, AR
I also just missed a gravity of 1.048 by 8 points lower. I was actually hoping to get a little higher than 1.048; I'm not sure why I ended up with such a low gravity. My mash went well, maybe oversparge? I just eyeballed the liquid level. That'll teach me.

Anyway, I'd like to boost my ABV as well so any instructions on this would be appreciated.
 

discgolfin

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 3, 2007
Messages
615
Reaction score
5
Location
Chicago, Il.
Do not dump..man give it some time to age..I say boil a pound of DME

I just did this to a blond ale because is was way to light..needed a bit more

Jay
 

Belair

New Member
Joined
Nov 10, 2013
Messages
2
Reaction score
0
Here is my reasoning, I might be wrong, might be right :

If you brew a pale ale or lager at 3.8% alc and want to have it at 5%, it seems like adding sugar to up the alc content +1.2% would produce more nasties that could be tasted in the brew (by-products of fermentation) than if going with :

Option 2: adding a bit of 92-96% alc. to up the level to 5%, really won't take much and that alcohol is much purer than the 1.2% you'll get from fermenting sugar in your beer, would it be candi, invert or dextrose whatever… So, it should be cleaner in taste and very hard to detect : ferment a sugar wash to 1.2% clarify it and carbon filter it even, I doubt it would taste cleaner than water + 95% alc to make the alc content 1.2% It just makes total sense to me.

Unless that when adding sugar in a wort, when it ferments the things blend together and somewhat the sugar starts giving some good flavours like the malt/ and is totally different from adding some sugar wash to a beer. I highly doubt it.

and yes I know I could just add more malt, but I'm talking about adding 1.2% here, not much…

Any thoughts ?
 

FRS

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 8, 2011
Messages
149
Reaction score
8
Location
State College
Next time you pull a sample dose it with an appropriate amount of everclear and see how it tastes. I've not had everclear but it could be good.

Personally, I'd feel better about adding dme or sugar, but to each his own!
 
Top