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Special B Syrup?

I was wondering if anyone tried anything like this. I suppose you can do this as an all grain or extract brewer.

Say your making a dubbel or whatever… take the special b (maybe a half pound for 5 gallons?) You steep it separate from your mash in a little bit of water. Maybe a quart or two? Add sugar to the steep, a pound or so and cook it down a bit. Maybe not necessarily into a syrup but into a more concentrated concoction that could be added near the end of the boil.

Any idea if this would make a significant difference to the end product? Same ingredients that would already be in the recipe, just handling them a bit different than usual.

I don’t see any advantage to adding sugar, and cooking down is going to volatilize the aromatics just like having it in the boil. If you want to add it late I’d steep in a minimal amount of water (1qt/lb) and just add that late. You’ll need twice as much as the recipe calls for because the grain will hold onto half the 1qt of water.

Really though, a well-kilned malt like Special B probably has more in the way of flavor components than aromatics. I don’t think you’re losing it in the boil, and having it in the mash undoubtedly extracts the most stuff.

I was thinking about it from a flavor standpoint. Kinda like caramelizing the special b.

Adding it late, or in the beginning i guess doesn’t really matter. Boiling wort longer and more vigorously changes the end product right? Concentrates the flavors and can even make it less fermentable?

I don’t want to do that to the whole mash, thats why i’m talking about doing it just to the special b.

Just like when you cook down white sugar you get caramel, a totally different flavor. So like a special b caramel. More sweetness and a darker flavor?

Have you tried either the D2 or the D180 Belgian candi syrup?

Special B is already kilned highly enough that its bringing dark fruits and deep caramel notes, I don’t think it could get any darker without tasting burnt. Not that boiling it down would do too much of that until you almost ran out of water, like when making caramel.

But I’m all for experimentation, have at it and report back if you find it makes a positive contribution. I kind of like the notion of making a little extract concentrate from one specialty grain or another. Might actually be useful in blending into a fermented beer as a sub for priming sugar, to bring a little extra flavor boost.

Candi syrups are excellent products.

I’d like to try D2. I haven’t really gotten into making dubbels. I made a dubbel-esque brew as a small “starter” batch and that was my first time trying special B. Seems to me like I didn’t get much sweetness at all from it, I know dubbels aren’t sweet, but the chimay dubbel I had was sweeter than my beer (half off any bottle at mellow mushroom last week! Woohoo!).

Maybe I’ll make a split batch soon. One with D2 and the other with some “Special B syrup.”

I’d love to do that as an experiment!

BTW. What other Dubbels should I try. I love belgians but they are SOOO expensive.

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