Question about my first batch

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New Member
Apr 9, 2009
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Hey everyone, I'm new to the board and to brewing in general. I am about 2 weeks into my first batch, I am brewing an extract extra pale ale style beer but I am afraid I might have screwed up on the recipe. I bought all the ingredients as a kit from a local brew store and followed all the directions except for the fact that they said to only brew 2.5 gallons to make the wort. I had a very large pot and didn't know that you are supposed to use less hops when you boil wort with more water. Anyway I used about 5 gallons in the boil and just threw in the 2 oz of 7.1% Perle hops at the 60 minute mark and 2 oz of 7.1% cascade at the 3 minute mark just like the instructions said, but looking back I'm afraid that this may have made my beer overly bitter. I found a calculator thing online and typed in everything that i put in and it calculated an IBU rating of about 65 when the rating for a pale ale is supposed to be more like 40-45. Is there anything that I can possibly do to make the beer a little less bitter?? Then again though I do kind of like bitter beers, I'm just hoping that 65 IBU isn't too ridiculous. Everything I have read has just said to let it sit a bit longer and the tastes will mellow out, but should I let it sit in the carboy a bit longer or in bottles. I did primary fermentation for 6 days and it has been in the secondary fermenter for about 7 now. Any suggestions on what to do would be helpful... but it's probably just me stressing about my first brew. As my friend has been telling me, "just relax, have a homebrew".


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Jan 31, 2009
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Your friend is right :mug:

You can bottle anytime after your hydrometer says that fermentation is over (by having the same gravity reading over two or three days). How long you want to leave it in secondary after that minimum requirement is part of the art and experimentation in homebrewing!




Well-Known Member
Dec 18, 2007
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Terre Haute, IN
Your friend is correct. Just relax. I think that you're probably going to make a great beer. It's true that hops will fade with age, that's in primary/secondary or bottles. It'll just drop with age, period. Hops also have a different effect regarding the viscosity of a liquid. The thicker the liquid (higher gravity) the lower the efficiency of the hops (you need more hops to extract more IBUs). The thinner the liquid the more efficient the hops. That's probably what happened with your kit. They gave you more hops, hoping that you would boil with less liquid (higher gravity) and that would lower the IBUs. I'd check your gravity to ensure that you're at your final gravity before bottling. I'd wait at least 3 more weeks to let the yeast clean up any off flavors in the fermenter. Personally I think that you're probably in the IPA range. Sounds like you're gonna make a pretty good one too! :D

What was your OG?