New Belgium - what is that distinct flavor?!

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permo

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New Belgiums Fat Tire and 2 Below have a very distinct biscuit/nut aroma and flavor. I have tried aromatic malt, belgiun biscuit malt, belgian pilsen, special roast, special B, belgium pale.etc..etc..etc. I just can't seem to get this distinct toasty, bread flavor that they have. I am wondering if it isn't in their yeast. Unfortunetly they filter well.....I have yet to find a trace in a bottle. :(

Has anybody tried to duplicate this flavor? After my experimenting I don't think its the malt, unless they have some sort of propriety, home grown roasting process.
 

Scut_Monkey

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I have never had any of their beers but if you suspect its the yeast try isolating it with some dregs. Just because you can't see it dosen't mean there might not be some there. Try shaking up the last 1/4" and tossing into a 100ml starter on a plate.
 

oldschool

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I know what you mean by their distinct flavor. I also pick it up in bass pale ale.
 

TheDutchman

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I believe it's honey malt. I had one of there pale ale's (something about a dog that died on the bottle) that specifically stated it used LOTS of honey malt. The nutty New Belgium flavor was particularly strong in that beer.
 

rico567

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I dunno, but:

1. I know what you're talking about.

2. I think it's the reason I just don't care for NB's beers.

"1554" comes the closest to something I like, and I like Sam Adams Black Lager better.
 
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permo

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soon, ill be receiving some fat tire yeasties from another member for my clone. if its sucessful, ill get back to you.

That would be fantastic!

I don't think it is honey malt either. I brewed up a beer with a pound of it, and I didn't get that flavor at all. I am thinking it is yeast.

I love the flavor and would love to use their yeast on a strong scotch ale type of recipe. I think it would be awesome. I think fat tire is more of a scotch ale type of brew anyways.
 

metaltim

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Apparently it's not common knowledge. I bought a fat tire clone from austin homebrew, and while it was a tasty brew, it tasted nothing like fat tire.
 

oldschool

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There is a brewery near me that makes a nut brown ale that has the exact same nutty taste/aroma. I really doubt it is their yeast, this particular brewery uses White labs cal ale. just highly doubt it. I always just assumed it was biscuit malt. maybe not. I will ask him what he uses in his nut brown within a week and let you know.
 

smizak

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I'm thinking Victory maybe? I sneak that stuff into as many recipes as I can, it makes for great toasty, nutty flavors on the finish.
 

Bopper

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I always thought that bready flavor was from the biscuit malt. I figured I never got the flavor right in my clone attempts because I'm brewing extract and was not mashing the biscuit but just using it as a steeping grain.
 

lamarguy

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I brewed an amber ale recently this is very similar to a Fat Tire both in flavor and color, but I used an authentic Belgian (Antwerp) yeast. Antwerp yeast is clean but does produce more esters than are present in Fat Tire since New Belgium uses a more neutral American yeast.

To obtain a nice bready aroma, I used 1# of biscuit/victory malt, 1# of munich malt, and 0.5# of aromatic. To get the malt flavor "zing", I adjusted the mash pH to 5.3 @ 78F (~5.1 at mash temperature).

I drank both two beers side by side recently and the flavor profile is nearly spot on, but my brew has more esters (as expected).
 

Brewing Clamper

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I told the SWMBO about this thread and her response was "it's foot!" Needless to say, she's not crazy about their stuff...
 

motobrewer

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That would be fantastic!

I don't think it is honey malt either. I brewed up a beer with a pound of it, and I didn't get that flavor at all. I am thinking it is yeast.

I love the flavor and would love to use their yeast on a strong scotch ale type of recipe. I think it would be awesome. I think fat tire is more of a scotch ale type of brew anyways.
what did you brew with a pound of honey? did you like it?

I used 2oz in a christmas ale, and have the rest of the pound sitting here. maybe I should have used some in the pale ale i just brewed...
 

craven_morhead

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The dog label Dutchman was thinking of is Mighty Arrow.

My guess for the flavor was always biscuit malt, but I'm really not sure. Tastes like toast to me.
 

northernlad

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Whatever it is, yeast or malt it seems to be in everything except 1554.
I find the same thing with Alaskan as well.
I wish I liked it.
 

Scut_Monkey

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what did you brew with a pound of honey? did you like it?

I used 2oz in a christmas ale, and have the rest of the pound sitting here. maybe I should have used some in the pale ale i just brewed...

Not sure if I'm reading your post correctly but honey malt is a type of malt and not a type of honey.
 

jlpred55

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It is the yeast strain they use. They use the same yeast for a lot the beers they make. This isn't out of my a$$ either- was taking the tour and asked them, said it is a character of the yeast they use. I'd bet an email would get a adequate response.
 

motobrewer

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Not sure if I'm reading your post correctly but honey malt is a type of malt and not a type of honey.
yes, i realize....

i've only used it once, in a brew that's still in the secondary, so I don't know the effects, but i've heard to use it sparingly. I used 2oz in 5 gal, I just wondered what he made with a pound of it, and how it turned out
 
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permo

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what did you brew with a pound of honey? did you like it?

I used 2oz in a christmas ale, and have the rest of the pound sitting here. maybe I should have used some in the pale ale i just brewed...


I actually used a pound in an ESB and it was nice.

Honey Malt also works very well in a cream ale.
 

Scut_Monkey

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yes, i realize....

i've only used it once, in a brew that's still in the secondary, so I don't know the effects, but i've heard to use it sparingly. I used 2oz in 5 gal, I just wondered what he made with a pound of it, and how it turned out

Got ya. Didn't want to insult you but didn't want you to be mislead. I've only used honey malt once as well and I didn't notice much of it in the beer but that might have been due to me not really knowing what to look for.
 

daveotero

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I think it's their yeast as well. Works well for Fat Tire but unfortunately it makes their Trippel kinda suck.
 

masonsjax

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I have a beer fermenting now that I based on a fat tire clone recipe. I used a half lb of cara amber malt, which from nibbling some grains, tastes more bready/biscuity to me than victory. Maybe they use some of that?
 

motobrewer

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Got ya. Didn't want to insult you but didn't want you to be mislead. I've only used honey malt once as well and I didn't notice much of it in the beer but that might have been due to me not really knowing what to look for.
no worries
 

Beernip

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I recently emailed NB about a clone of their Abbey ale. The gentleman was helpful and sent me this about their yeast. "The most important part, of course is the yeast. Our founder acquired ours in Belgium many years ago but you can get pretty close to a flavor match with White Labs WL 500 from a homebrew shop."
 

oldschool

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I think it was last year sometime wyeast featured NB's yeast on their VSS release. maybe you can still get it. who knows
 

ramthebuffs

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I read somewhere jeff from NB got his abbey yeast out of a chimay bottle back in the 80's or something.
 

sonetlumiere85

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Just to clarify, the reason 1554 doesn't have the flavor is because it is fermented with a lager yeast. I find all of NB's beers to be quite good, I really like the yeast character. It definitely isn't biscuit/melanoidin/amber/etc malts that you guys have been talking about, I can tell you that much.
 
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permo

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Maybe I just have to go to belgium? Has anybody seen even a bit of haze or sediment on the bottom of a bottle of two below, fat tire or hoptober? I find this yeast character such a nice compliment to nutty, bready malt profiles. Two below is such a nicely balanced beer, hops, malt, yeast, alcohol.......one of my favs.

I have sent an email to NB iquiring about malts, yeasts and such to see if I can unlock a secret or two for us. I don't expect much but I will report back.
 

duffman2

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Maybe I just have to go to belgium? Has anybody seen even a bit of haze or sediment on the bottom of a bottle of two below, fat tire or hoptober? I find this yeast character such a nice compliment to nutty, bready malt profiles. Two below is such a nicely balanced beer, hops, malt, yeast, alcohol.......one of my favs.

I have sent an email to NB iquiring about malts, yeasts and such to see if I can unlock a secret or two for us. I don't expect much but I will report back.
Never found anything yet but I've looked. My clone is the "House Beer" I always have on tap so I'd love to get it a little closer to that elusive flavor! Good luck and let us know what you find! :mug:
 

oldschool

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hell no, ive been hounding WY to re-release it. a memeber is sending me a slant though.... all i have to do is ship him some bottles of the clone.
depending on which yeast it is. I would be interested in buying a slant as well.
 

oldschool

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If it is the yeast then use white labs 001. I know someone who makes a nut brown with the same nutty profile and uses WLP001. I read in BYO the brewmaster at NB said to use an americal ale profile yeast when cloning their amber ale. I might be able to find the link.
 
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