Low IBU Extract Kits

Although I am a rocking home cook, I am a brewing newbie - I just took NB’s beginners class last month. I am loving it. In reading about beer I have learned that I am also probably considered an amateur when it comes to consuming beer, I just don’t like a strong bitterness in my beer.

Now don’t think I a should be sticking to wine coolers, those are nothing more than soda pop with a kick, I am not a fan of those either. I do like some bitterness, as long as its balanced with full bodied flavor. But I pretty much need to stick with kits that have low IBUs.

I just bottled my first batch of Caribou Slobber. Going into the bottle it was ok but just a hair on the bitter side for me. Will it smooth out with age?

I also just racked a batch of Speckled Heifer into a secondary fermentation and will be bottling it later this week - I know the directions said I didn’t need to do this step but my brewing instructor said he always does a second ferment. The Speckled Heifer seemed to be “spot” on, excuse the pun, with my bitterness tolerance.

I also just brewed a batch of Bavarian Hefeweizen yesterday - have no idea how that is going to taste.

Anyway, I just can’t tell from NB’s descriptions which kits would fit my taste preferences. I would so much appreciate a little help with some recommendations as to which kits are on the lower IBU

One more thing, my farmhouse basement seems to have decent temps for lagering. My temps readings show temps between 48-54, depending on how cold and windy it is outside. I can also do the secondary ferment in a spare refrigerator in our farm machine shop that holds my 21 year old’s “Busch Light” - yuck! But since I can’t handle too much bitter in my beer perhaps I am to blame for his poor taste in beer.

Anyway a lager extract kit is an option for me.

Thanks in advance for everyone’s help.

I just bottled NB’s Irish Red Ale a few weeks ago. That might fit your bill. It has a low bitterness but great flavor. Take a look at Scottish ales as well. A Blonde or Cream Ale might be to your liking too.

Try the petite saison.

Figure out your IBU tolerance and just dial back the hop additions. If you save enough hops you can make your own beer and save money on a kit. Save your yeast and just order the grain or extract.

I agree with the Irish Red suggestion. It’s a great beer, and not hoppy at all. I actually up the hops a little when I do it. The NB version is a fine example and very popular with my crowd.Then of course there are Porters and Stouts which aren’t hoppy. And most Brown ales(NBs Nut Brown is a good one).And Scottish ales. And Cream Ales. And the whole family of Belgians.
In other words, plenty of options.
If I’m not sure about a particular style I try to find a commercial example to see if I like it. Luckily my local packie store has a ‘create your own 6-pack’ feature which is quite handy.
Oh, to answer your Q about the Caribou Slobber. Yes, once it’s carbonated and conditioned(about 3-4 weeks in the bottle) it mellows somewhat and of course hoppiness tends to fade with time. But then I don’t feel that CS is all that hoppy. :wink:

Nut brown ale, or a sweet stout are lower in IBU

Welcome aboard!!!

Thank you for all the replies.

On the subject of dialing back on hops, which is better, reducing the quantity or adding them later in the boil?

On the stout suggestion, I tried Chocolate Milk Stout at NB a couple weeks ago, it was delicious and is literally on my bucket list.

That probably depends on the hops. If it’s a high aa bittering hop like magnum I would add less. If it is a dual purpose hops you could move it up. If it were me, I would probably plug the recipe into your software and add less of the first addition to lower the IBU to where you like it. Now you are into recipe building which is the fun part. What I used to do is take a kit recipe and work it to what I like and just buy the ingredients no kit.

Thanks for the advice.

I was just thinking about my Caribou Slobber comment. It just occurred to me that I tasted it at room temp and non-carbonated. Chilling and carbonation probably will change my perception of the taste.

Now I have to wait two weeks or more to find out - I can’t wait.

[quote=“farmmom”]Thanks for the advice.

I was just thinking about my Caribou Slobber comment. It just occurred to me that I tasted it at room temp and non-carbonated. Chilling and carbonation probably will change my perception of the taste.

Now I have to wait two weeks or more to find out - I can’t wait.[/quote]
After the first two weeks, it will be even better after another four weeks.

Dang, it will be hard to four weeks, but I can do it. …the guy at the store said I should test the carbonation level of the bottles so I think I have to crack one open after to weeks to check to see how things are going…right. Or should I just assume all is good after two weeks and cold crash without testing?

Go ahead and test one not because your weak but just to make sure everything is ok :wink:

I can agree with the others CS gets smoother with age. I thought it had a little bite when I took my FG. At one week still a bit, but now at 3 weeks it’s delicious. And about having to wait 4 weeks for bottle conditioning, well you may have to wait but it’s worth is, and soon you will have more beer that you know what to do with. I can tell you this hobby is addictive. I currently have 3 cases for Caribou Slobber, 2 cases of SMASH American Ale, 2 cases of my Spiced Winter and just bottled 4 cases of the NB Irish Red. I have another kit on deck but had to stop as I don’t have any more bottles or room for them.

I too am a fan of less hoppy beers. You’re getting good advice all around here. Remember that most of the bitterness in a beer comes from the 60 min hop addition, so if you find a beer you like, but it’s a little too bitter, you can play with the bittering(60 min) hop addition–maybe move half of it to the last 5 or 10 minutes, or even flameout. I’ve done that with several beers (NB’s American wheat is one) with good results. You just have to be careful sometimes when dealing with tried and true recipes that you don’t knock the balance out of kilter. Done that too. But it is interesting to play with the hops (especially in small batches) to dial in your tastes.

Welcome to the obsession!