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Need a beer style suggestion for a picky SWMBO

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aggiejay06

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Hey folks,

Trying to find something to brew that my wife will actually like, so she can enjoy the fruits of my homebrewing labor, too...here's a little info on her:

-For years she's been a Coors Light girl
-I just recently was able to get her to switch to Miller Lite (I was so proud of her since it does have at least a little more flavor to it)
-She has hated all my beers that I've brewed...Pale Ale, Belgian Tripel, Amber Ale, and even the Brewer's Best Weizenbier kit that I bought thinking she might like
-She HATES hoppiness. She thinks IPAs taste like trees (not too confident she'll like my Rye IPA that I'm about to dryhop tomorrow, haha)

I need to step up the flavor a bit from Miller Lite, but just a small baby step, and low on the IBUs. I think she might be okay with some fruitiness.

Any suggestions?
 
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aggiejay06

aggiejay06

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All grain for sure! The blonde ale...that's a good idea. I never drink those so didn't even come to my mind. It takes her a month to polish off a six pack, so I think I'll do only 2.5 gallons of whatever I end up doing.
 

Mongrel

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-She HATES hoppiness. She thinks IPAs taste like trees (not too confident she'll like my Rye IPA that I'm about to dryhop tomorrow, haha)
Does she like grapefruit? If yes, buy some Inversion from Deschutes. No pine to this one.

You may need to go higher end and pick up something like The Abyss. Doesn't look like you've tried anything blacker than black.

Make some chicha and see if she if she'll help you chew corn?

Honestly, some people can't be helped. Buy her a nice Malbec and enjoy your beer.
 
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aggiejay06

aggiejay06

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Hmm...mashing just 4.5 lbs of grain or so for a 2.5 gallon final batch size in a 10-gallon MLT...any reason that should create problems for me? Worried about heat loss primarily I guess...

Similar note...fermenting just 2.5 gallons in either a 6.5 gallon bucket or 5 gallon better bottle...any concerns there? I figure there should be enough CO2 production to fill that headspace...but I've never brewed anything but 5 or 5.5 gallon batches.
 

joeybeer

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I just brewed cream of three crops and it tastes like a much nicer Miller lite ... The recipe is on here somewhere !
 

Dynachrome

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Do a traditional German Wheat. They are mellow on the hops. It's difficult to old back. Measure - it takes very little.
 

Stout-n-Braggot

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You can ferment that small volume in a 5 gallon container, but its best to have a smaller fermenter for smaller batches.
I <3 my 2.5 gallon carboy.
 

TheBeerNerd

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Hmm...mashing just 4.5 lbs of grain or so for a 2.5 gallon final batch size in a 10-gallon MLT...any reason that should create problems for me? Worried about heat loss primarily I guess...

Similar note...fermenting just 2.5 gallons in either a 6.5 gallon bucket or 5 gallon better bottle...any concerns there? I figure there should be enough CO2 production to fill that headspace...but I've never brewed anything but 5 or 5.5 gallon batches.
Seems like a lot of headspace in that MLT... probably will get quite a bit of heat loss... might want to try mashing in a bag?

Better Bottle should be fine, but I wouldn't rack to secondary. Just let it clear up in the primary.
 
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aggiejay06

aggiejay06

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Yeah...It'd be nice to get a smaller fermenter...but on top of being picky about her beer, she's gone all Dave Ramsey on me with crazy budget stuff...

We each only have $35 of blow money per month. Thought it'd be a nice gesture if I spent some of mine on brewing her a beer. The rest is going to a bottle of bourbon for April :).

I think I may do a BIAB for this one perhaps...
 

smagee

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I'd agree with nerd; mashing such a small recipe in a 10gal would give you some serious heat management concerns. The BIAB method would probably be best. As for fermentation, I wouldn't worry about it too much. The initial burst of CO2 will help protect it once you get rolling.

The nice thing is that with the Centennial Blonde there, it's only 4%ish, so if she is particularly fond of it, she can afford to have a few more :). That and it's cheap as all hell.
 

Fid

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I think the first craft beer that I got my wife to enjoy was a Kolsch from a local brewery. She's still not a huge beer drinker and isn't always super exited by what I brew but I always make her try it and always make her try everything I order when we go out even if I know she's gonna hate that 90 IBU IPA that's on tap, but honestly, shes coming along. We went back to the same brewery with the Kolsch she enjoyed and she got her self a pint, drank half of it and said "you know, this is good... but it just doesn't taste like anything". Having the wife complain about a beer not having much body or flavor made me a very, very happy man.
 

Oldyote

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Put your label on some Genuine Draft and call it a day. It's cheap, she will like it and you will be in the clear to keep on brewing.
 

dbsmith

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Put your label on some Genuine Draft and call it a day. It's cheap, she will like it and you will be in the clear to keep on brewing.
Haha, you are devious! Made me chuckle. But, I wonder if the opposite is true as well? For instance, my gf is scared if I make a beer and it is presented in a soda bottle, but if it is bottled really nicely, she is much more open to appreciating it.
 

CABeerMaker

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Another suggestion on the blonde theme...
I make a blonde that I add vanilla to the fermenter, 2 beans for 5 gal. It leaves just a hint of vanilla flavor and adds a level of creaminess to the beer. It is one of the favorites among my BMC friends, I'm still trying to expand their horizons.
 

TANSTAAFB

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This recipe is based on Pagosa Brewing Co.'s Kayaker Cream Ale. This was the first craft beer she actually liked, so I wrote Tony (the brewer) and he was kind enough to send me his recipe. I brewed it and my wife (who isn't a big beer fan) enjoys it, is bugging me to brew more, and once it aged about a month it really came into its own as a good solid session beer. About as close as you can get to brewing a light ale and pretty tasty. Very low IBU's...my wife thinks anything I brew is too bitter, even my 23 IBU Belgian Pale Ale!!!

Basic parameters from Tony:
Malt: 1.043 OG
90% 2-Row
7% Biscuit
3% Cara-pils
(You can also substitute a nominal % of flaked corn or corn sugar to
achieve a more light-bodied, Cream Ale-like beer.)

Hops: German Noble - 14 IBUs

What I brewed:

Colorado Cream Ale
All Grain
Batch Size: 5.50 gal
Efficiency: 72.00
ABV: 4.24%
SRM: 4.6
IBU: 14
Original Gravity Target: 1.043 SG
Final Gravity Target : 1.008 SG

7 lbs 12.0 oz Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM) Grain 85.54 %
8.0 oz Biscuit Malt (23.0 SRM) Grain 5.52 %
8.0 oz Corn, Flaked (1.3 SRM) Grain 5.52 %
5.0 oz Cara-Pils/Dextrine (2.0 SRM) Grain 3.42 %
60 min 0.50 oz Saaz [6.80 %] (60 min) Hops
30 min 0.50 oz Hallertauer [3.80 %] (30 min) Hops
5 min 0.25 oz Tettnang [3.90 %] (5 min) Hops

Single Infusion, Light Body, Batch Sparge
60 min Mash 151-152* F

On the rebrew I cut the corn in half...it tasted too much like, well, corn!

It is a light lawnmower beer, easy drinking, great for a hot day, so if SWMBO doesn't like it, it won't go to waste.

Honestly, my wife will drink this, but is happy with her MGD 64...it's cheap and has less calories. She appreciates the effort but she is never going to be a craft beer/ homebrew drinker. I ask her to try all my brews and give her opinion so I know how she perceives different flavors, but she really doesn't like beer. She is much happier with her Crown!!! I have read many a post where people are trying to come up with something their wife will like...sometimes it works out, sometimes it doesn't...it is a nice gesture but she won't necessarily come on board. And that's OK too!!!

Cheers :mug:
 

kimber

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Step up to an all grain lager with rice added as an adjunct to lighten the flavor. Or, easier route, try adding 5-7 lbs fresh strawberries to secondary on a pale ale. You will have do do a tertiary ferment. The strawberries really lighten the beer flavor and make it more champagne like if it is a really light, lowly hopped pale ale to begin with...
 
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aggiejay06

aggiejay06

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A lot of great suggestions, thanks folks. Anyone happen to know how many IBUs Miller Lite is so I can keep that in mind as a reference?

Also...never done BIAB...so got a couple of questions here about it. I went from extracts straight to all-grain in the full MLT.

My biggest question is how I'm going to calculate the volumes to use to end up with 2.5 gallons...don't see a BIAB option on Beersmith. As far as strike water and sparge water...what volumes? Or no sparge? Not sure how to handle it.

And do y'all suspend the bag from something so it doesn't touch bottom of kettle?
 

edgeofblade

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My view on brewing for my swmbo: don't waste the money. Just get her the bartles and James she likes and she'll be happy.

If she's talking about hating hops all together, the odds are she doesn't know what hops are, what they taste like, why they're used, etc... All culminating in her being turned off to anything remotely related to your hobby just out of dingbatty persistent ignorance.

Yeah, this is kinda a sore subject for me. My wife can find a problem with hyper fruity lambics, and that's the only beer she has ever enjoyed remotely.
 

Valcarde

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Try expanding beyond just beers.

Try some of EdWort's Apfelwein or BrandonO's Graff. The apfelwein is a nice cider that you can serve either carbed or still, and so far has been a big hit with my extended family. Even my FIL, who normally dislikes beer, loved it.

The graff has a very light hop flavor (as it should; only .5 oz of hops in it!) and a quick turnover rate. Good apple flavor balanced with malty and mild hoppy goodness. And if she's a fan of Stephen King, even more win.
 

Zamial

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Hey now, just hold up a sec...you have a SWMBO that likes Coors and/or Miller lite? and she is not emptying a Miller/Coors Home Draft system for you to reuse why? I had a tough time cooking with that swill, if you know someone that actually admits to liking it; I would be like, "Hey babe, let me grab you another one..." This is just win/win. Not to mention she will feel special having her beer on tap...man, I would ride this train for all it is worth...

The next thing is, let her drink what she likes. Lite beer drinkers think any flavor is bad. It is cheaper for you now that she likes cheap beer but once you break her from that, your wallet will not be so happy...ask me how I know...

This summer get her to try some main stream wheat beers. Like Hoegarden and Wittekerke if that is a no-go then I suggest some form of a cream ale with corn adjuncts.

GL
 

rico567

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I make a clone of Leinenkugel's Sunset Wheat that the ladies enjoy. Low on the hops, and the blueberry and coriander work well.

Grain bill:

5 lbs. 2-row
4 lbs. US white wheat malt
12 oz. carapils

Hops:

1 oz. Tettnang

Other:

1 oz. ground coriander seed at end of boil

1 oz. blueberry extract in bottling bucket

Wyeast 3068 (German Weihenstephan)

Mash 152F for 60 min

60 min. boil
 
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