Weird primings

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RobbyBeers

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Hi all,

I have been intrigued by the idea of using different sugars in my beers, not necessarily to up the alcohol, but rather to get flavor from the unfermentables.

I know that people add sugars to the boil or to the primary (I've tried both), but I was wondering if anyone has experience using different sugars to prime their bottles. I mean, if DME and corn sugar can both do the job, then why couldn't, e.g., demerera sugar?

I know that corn sugar is the most popular because it is the most easily fermentable, but if I were brewing something like a stout and wasn't too worried about leftover sugars or low carbonation, maybe I could use something else.

Any experiences? Thoughts?
 

brian_g

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I've always primed with dextrose, but I'll tell you what I think anyway. I think your trying to do two experiments at the same time. You want to know if X sugar will add any desirable flavors to your beer and if X sugar will work for priming. The answers to these questions may not be the same. I think you need to separate these two questions. If you want to see what a different kind of sugar does to the flavor, just add it to the wart before fermentation. Then prime normally. I don't see what you'd gain from priming with weird sugar. The amount you need to add character to your beer will probably be different from the amount needed for carbonation. Also different sugars produce different levels of CO2 so you have to change the amount to get the right carbonation levels.
 
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RobbyBeers

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Thanks for the links, Revvy. I visited your bottling thread a while back, and I credit it for the zen relationship I have with my bottling process (in comparison with every other brewer I know). I hadn't seen that sugar info in there, though. So thanks again.
 
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RobbyBeers

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Thanks also brian_g for the feedback. I take your point that carb potential and residual flavor are two separate issues, but I would argue that they can't really be tested separately, because I think that adding to the wort and adding to the bottle are very different processes.

Now you may still be correct that nothing desirable is gained by using these sugars for priming, but absent any other feedback, the only way to figure it out is to try it, I guess.
 

ajf

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I always prime with table sugar. You don't need as much table sugar as dextrose to get the the same level of carbonation (I'm sure Palmer has a nomograph), and I can't taste the difference. I can't imagine that you would get much flavor in the beer by using different flavored priming sugars, but don't let my lack of imagination stop you experimenting.

-a.
 

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