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MrWhy

Basic/Session Brew

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HAPPY FRIDAY NIGHT PEOPLE!!!!!

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Question:

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Looking to brew up a nice, easy, low ABV brew. Admittedly, I've not done any forum research yet.

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How does the Oktoberfest sans booster; sans added malt, turn out?

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Are there any other simple recipes/additions that keep the ABV low (sub 4%) but still have a good flavor? 

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Any tips? A nice steeping grain basic recipe combo? Adding any hops....

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Thank you for any advice/guidance!

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Oktoberfest by itself is a bit light on body. If you truly want low ABV just steep some CaraPils. It adds no flavor, just head retention and body.

 

Another grain to consider is Chocolate Malt. It adds more coffee flavor than chocolate (the name refers to color not flavor) and I have noticed a pretty good body/head retention with this one. I add this to pretty much any dark beer recipe.

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I would describe the Oktoberfest as easy, low abv, but a little lacking in the flavor department.  As jsherman mentioned, you'll want to jazz it up a bit.  I say ditch the booster, but I would definitely add a pound (or 2) of lme.  Also, don't use the Mr. Beer recommended amount of sugar for carbonation; use about a 1/4tsp less, or else you'll have "seltzery" beer.

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I would add a pound of LME to all the base refills, or buy the Deluxe version which includes an 8.8 oz packet.  I would NOT add 2 pounds to any refill unless you're also going to do a hop addition - you neutralize the hops in the HME too much.

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I put together a quick English Bitters recipe with LHBS ingredients that fits the bill and that's tasting really good (just bottled yesterday, so haven't experienced fully carbed and conditioned). It's 1 lb light DME, 1 1/5 lb dark LME, 1 oz Golding hops and S-04 yeast. Super easy, fermented fast and clean and cleared up fast.  1.042 OG and a projected ABV of just over 4 percent.

I'd think that a number of the simpler MR. Beer darker Ale recipes could work in the same way. Anything with 1 can and a pack of DME would give you a nice beer.

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Thank you for all the replies gents. 

 

JA - Like the looks of that recipe. I may have to make a visit to the LHBS and try something like it out.

 

RB - what do you think about steeping some carapils with the base (no added malt?)

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Steeping Carapils or Caraform increases head retention and mouthfeel.  Adding LME increases the maltiness of the brew.

 

I found that the base refills were missing something, so I always added a pound of LME.  Steeping Carapils or Carafoam should be done WHEN a new brewer feels comfortable.

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53 minutes ago, RickBeer said:

Steeping Carapils or Caraform increases head retention and mouthfeel.  Adding LME increases the maltiness of the brew.

 

I found that the base refills were missing something, so I always added a pound of LME.  Steeping Carapils or Carafoam should be done WHEN a new brewer feels comfortable.

 

Thank you!

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3 hours ago, MrWhy said:

 

JA - Like the looks of that recipe. I may have to make a visit to the LHBS and try something like it out.

 

I worked out a few quickie recipes like that to try out some different dry yeasts. That combination in particular seems to be a good one. It finished fermenting so fast I bottled it after about 10 days. For a minimum of ingredients and a quick turn-around in the LBK I think it's going to be a great little beer.

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