What on earth did I just brew?

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zsprowls

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Hi all,

A few days ago I went into the homebrew shop in my new town with the intention of picking up the ingredients for my black ale, which is my favorite of all the beers I brew. (I was worried and I was correct in my worries). When I got there nothing was in a fridge (hops and yeast were in a relatively warm room), but I use pellets and dry yeast packets anyway, so I figured maybe it was a newer shipment so I would give it a go.

When I got there, he had none of what he said he did when I called on the phone. I wasn't able to get most of the ingredients for my black ale, but for fun, I decided to more or less buy him out of stock and brew with what he had. Now I have no clue what to call this beer.

Here are the ingredients:
-1lb unmalted black barley
-1lb Crystal malt 80L
-1lb Crystal malt 90L
-5lb Muntons Plain Light DME
-2lb Muntons Plain Extra Light DME

90min 1 oz Chinook
75 min 1oz nugget
60 min 1oz Northern Brewer
45 min 1oz Chinook
30 min 1oz German Hallertau
15 min 1oz German Hallertau
dry 1oz German Hallertau

Pitched one pack of Nottingham (I love nottingham, but think it was ridiculous that it was literally the only yeast he had.... like not even s-04 or us-05....I thought every hombrew shop was required by law or something to have an abundance or s-04 and us-05)

The beer is dark brown and pretty damn hoppy (obviously with all those hops) judging by the sample just before dryhopping after primary fermentation was done.

No clue what to call this other than a strong ale, but isn't that kind of a cheap way out? hahaha.

Thanks for your input ahead of time!
 

feinbera

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Pretty hoppy and somewhere between a watery brown and an imperial stout in color? Sounds like spot-on for a "black IPA" (or whatever you'd prefer to call the style that often goes by that name, among others) to me.
 

Yooper

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I dont' see "hoppy" at all. The only non-bittering hops are an ounce of hallertauer at 15 minutes (flavor hops) and 1 ounce of dry hopping- the rest are bittering hops. so it looks bitter, yes, but not really anything "hoppy" and definitely not at IPA levels of "hoppy".
 

hopbrad

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out of my league on this one. but if it were me it might be one of those you stick n the cellar and forget about it. thats a lot of bittering hops and alot of specialty grains. may need some time to mellow out.
 
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zsprowls

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Yeah I guess bitter is a better way to describe it than hoppy. The hop selection was certainly less than desirable. I am thinking I should just start ordering online. Anyone have any thoughts on that?
 
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zsprowls

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Its certainly one to let sit for a while in a cool dark place. I'm well aware of that. I just don't know what the hell to call it haha
 
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zsprowls

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I'd disagree with the "a lot of specialty grains" part though. 3 pounds is not a lot. I always use a lot of specialty grains. I just typically use a more balanced blend of hops
 

hopbrad

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true, it might be alot of crystal tho. ive only been brewing for 2-3 yrs so im not an expert but that was something that seemed high, i usually go with 1/2-1lb of crystal depending on the beer.
could always let it sit in a secondary and if it doesnt mellow then mix it with something you didnt use bittering hops with.
 

Billy-Klubb

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Yeah I guess bitter is a better way to describe it than hoppy. The hop selection was certainly less than desirable. I am thinking I should just start ordering online. Anyone have any thoughts on that?
Northern Brewer is great and I never had a problem with More Beer either. depending on where you live, either of them should be more than suitable. I live only about 2 1/2 hours from NB, but still order on line from them. they're quick to get the order out, go through a lot of ingredients (which means fresh stuff for you), and they have great customer service. they go above & beyond to correct any problem. I've had the same experiences with MB as well.
 

brewmcq

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I get all my kits exclusively from MoreBeer. They now have a shipping warehouse in PA, so travel time is a whole lot shorter for me than it was before... plus, on orders over $59 (I think it is), they offer free "super saver" shipping... so when ordering 40# worth of AG kits, the wallet doesn't take a hit.
 

hogwash

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How about "I Gotta Find a New Homebrew Shop ASAP Ale"

I know that's not helpful...sorry.
 
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zsprowls

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I actually love that name hahaha. And that is all excellent news. I was kinda worried about heat and such when shipping yeast and hops, but I guess they have to get shipped to the hombrew shop.... so it would probably be better if they shipped straight to my house!
 

LovesIPA

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Yeah I guess bitter is a better way to describe it than hoppy. The hop selection was certainly less than desirable. I am thinking I should just start ordering online. Anyone have any thoughts on that?
I order hops online by the pound. For storage, I bought some ziploc-style oxygen-barrier bags. I label each bag with the name, date and acid %'s on the front. Then it goes into the freezer.

I slant yeast so I never have to buy it, online or in a LHBS, unless it's a strain I don't already have. My girlfriend loves the dozens of glass vials on the top shelf of the fridge. :)

I buy malt from the LHBS. I buy base malt by the sack and specialty grains by the pound.

I've managed to drive my cost-per-batch down pretty low, once I got all the equipment I needed.
 

eluterio

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I think you might be closer to a bitter stout. I used a lot of black malt in a stout a little too much like 18% and it was not so good. I gave it away to those who have no clue it tasted like sour black beer. I dont think you'll have a problem with yours as I did at 10% but it might be masked by the overwhelming bitterness from the early hop additions. Try adding more dry hops after the first round another oz of Haullertau or cascade and get it to the Black IPA. Just my thoughts.

Ive learn with using black malts to use less of it. Just made my first brown ale and used only 2% of chocolate malt and it still a bit overwhelming. just my opinion.

Or leave it and it could be a Russian Imperial Stout!
 
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