Jump to content
Mr.Beer Community
Sign in to follow this  
surepaul

Higher Alcohol Content

Recommended Posts

Not advised:  just adding sugar can produce a cidery flavor that may never condition out.  A better choice is to add malt extract (either liquid or dry), available from your Local Home Brew Store (LHBS).  But just doing that can make the Hopped Malt Extract's result too malty, so soon you need to also add hops too.  If you don't use amber or dark malt extract, which contain crystal malt and may use other specialty malts too, you might want a more complex flavor, and using amber or dark extract still may not be as interesting as beers can be   The best approach when starting is (1) first use the Mr Beer HME by itself to see what it's like as a foundation, then (2) use recipes from the Recipe section of the Mr Beer website to gain more experience, before (3) starting to experiment on your own. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chase flavor,not abv.  If you are chasing a buzz, do a shot or three of vodka before cracking the beer.  That bieng said, there are styles like an IPA that are naturally high in alcohol and may use some sugar to help thin it out

Too many people throw in every fermentable in the cupboard while going mad scientist and then say "Mr. Beer sucks" and stop brewing.  Althoug it works out for me as I am able to find LBKs at garage sales for a buck or two, I still try to help people avoid falling into that situation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I might also suggest, where appropriate, adding honey. You can boost ABV slightly and it can accentuate the style. I tend to go "mad scientist" with my wife's homemade jams, cranking out such hits as Rhubarb Grapefruit Saison and Hot Pepper Kumquat Pilsner. It's fun to rummage through the cupboards and brainstorm new flavors.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Welcome to the forum. Foothiller and Da Yooper offered good advice. Adding malt rather than sugar is a great way to increase flavor, body and alcohol as a consequence of having more malt to ferment. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you are shooting for more ABV add a Booster pouch or 8oz of honey to a 2 gallon MB refill.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

True. The Alcohol % will go up.


But then, so will the cider taste. It will take a lot longer to mellow out.


If you're going to do it that way, hey, save the booster and honey, and when you just go to drink the beer, add a shot of Vodka. That works as well.


I know it's "old", but I do suggest you go read The Simple Guide Line.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah the vodka will work, but I've used both the booster or honey many times and I've never had a cidery tasting beer.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Honey dries out a beer and provides little or no honey flavor.  I used booster twice and then never again.  1/2 to 1 pound of LME makes every Classic or Craft refill better, i. e. see Mr. Beer deluxe refills which use 8.8 Oz of LME.   

Hundreds of posts in the forum regarding cidery flavor, and longer time to condition out.  The stickies, as Yankeedag mentioned, should be read by all new brewers.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not the Booster Basher many around here are. If you use it in moderation you can raise abv a little without affecting the flavor.  Every once in a while I'll throw a half pouch in a batch. Raises the abv about 3/4 point. The dextrin in it also helps a little with foam. (Lets say you don't want a maltier tasting beer you might consider Booster instead of more malt)

As per Rick, honey makes the beer taste dry.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Definitely booster has its place at times when you need a little more abv. LME will work as well but it will change the flavor profile and if that's not what you want than I would still recommend booster or honey. What will produce a cidery taste with any ingredients in most cases is not fermenting long enough. Always shoot for 3 wks. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for your reply.  Out of all the replies,  I think yours makes the most sense.  I'm gonna ferment the next batch for 3 weeks and see what happens....because the first batch I made....was just a bit cidery and I thought about fermenting the next batch longer.  Now I will....thanx again.....Paul....:~)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't agree with the comments re: cidery results and fermentation times.  A couple of points.

There are hundreds, if not thousands, of posts on this forum recommending that in the absence of hydrometer readings, ALL your beer should be fermented for 3 weeks.  Read the stickies.  Ferment every batch for 3 weeks.  

Conditioning the beer, not fermenting the beer, for longer periods impacts cidery results.  Again, there are hundreds of posts on this.

3-4 is discussed over and over in the forum.  3 weeks fermenting, 4 weeks (AT LEAST) carbonating and conditioning at room temp.  The more sugar you add (honey, fruit, etc.) the longer you may want to carbonate and condition.  When your beer is ready, only refrigerate what you're ready to drink and refrigerate it for 3 days or longer.  

I can't say this enough - read the stickies.  Great info posted over the years teaches new brewers how to brew better.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...