Hi, This weekend we will be making a nut brown ale from a extract NB kit that has an alcohol content of about 4.5% and from what I have read is on the light side. I am considering adding 1/2 L brown sugar at 15 min left in the boil. I would also like to increase the beer’s body would this be best done with DME or a specialty grain addition? I have read of additions incl molasses,honey etc but don’t want to totally change the character of the beer if possible.
Hi, I’m a 20 batch rookie so others will know more than I. I think adding a bit of DME or caramel malt will do a better job of increasing body than would adding sugar. Couldn’t you try Carapils or one of the caramel malts, if you have any? Also, you can chat with the folks here at NB and they usually have good ideas about things like this.
I made the Nut Brown kit just yesterday, only I added a bit of chocolate malt (as per suggestion from N Brewer guy) because I wanted to give the beer just a little more flavor. Good luck!
I did the AG kit a couple years ago. Decided I wanted more ‘nut’ character, so I added 1/2 lb chopped filberts to the mash. I kept robbing the mash, picking out and eating the nuts. Man were they good. Not much flavor came through to the wort though…
Adding some extra chocolate malt as Mitch suggested is a good idea. And also as he suggested(well done Mitch!), DME will give you more “body” than just adding sugar, which will add alcohol, but tend to thin it out. Finally, adding 1/4-1/2 lb of flaked oats will add body, and if you toast them, add an interesting flavor.
My first batch was a nut brown ale extract kit. Added 2 vanilla bean pods, each slit end to end, to the secondary (5 gal batch). The first bottle sucked, but after about two months the vanilla flavor matured and sort of blended in, and then it was quite good.
Reduce the amount of water. Use a recipe calculator to determine how much water you need to get the alcohol content you want.