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Underwhelmed by flavor

Made a 3.25 gallon all grain batch of the following.

4.00 lb Pale Malt (2 Row) Bel (3.0 SRM) Grain 57.14 %
2.00 lb Wheat Malt, Bel (2.0 SRM) Grain 28.57 %
0.50 lb Biscuit Malt (23.0 SRM) Grain 7.14 %
0.50 lb Special B Malt (180.0 SRM) Grain 7.14 %
0.30 oz Fuggles [4.50 %] (60 min) Hops 7.3 IBU
0.25 oz Columbus (Tomahawk) [14.00 %] (60 min) Hops 18.8 IBU

Mashed at 155
og 1.55? Didn’t take reading
fg 1.12

Fermented with WLP550

Took a hydrometer sample today and was a little underwhelmed by the flavor. First time using this yeast and special B. Mostly a tart neutral flavor. Based on what i read on this forum I expected the special B to smack me in the face at those levels. It’s the equivalent of .77 pounds in a 5 gallon batch. What’s the deal?

I’ll be pitching the slurry for a Belgian IPA with all Colombus. How would you HOP IT? I don’t want to be underwhelmed again.

9.00 lb Pale Malt (2 Row) Bel (3.0 SRM) Grain 66.67 %
3.00 lb Rye Malt (4.7 SRM) Grain 22.22 %
1.00 lb Carared (20.0 SRM) Grain 7.41 %
0.50 lb Biscuit Malt (23.0 SRM)

Give it some time to come together and carbonate. Hydrometer samples are not a good measure for how the beer will taste once it’s properly conditioned.

For the Belgian IPA I would bitter with a half ounce and do a ton of late hops to get your IBU’s where you want. At least that’s how I like my IPA’s.

Something like:
.5oz 60
1oz 20
2oz 10
2oz 0
2oz dry hop

My experience with Special B is that a little goes a long way, and more isn’t better. I like it better at just a few percent of the grist with maybe some other crystal or some dark Belgian candi syrup.

I’ve also had problems with my dubbels and I think its been a combination of my water and oxidation. I’d pay attention to those aspects of a beer that is malt-forward.

I agree with Sean that its a little early to decide what your beer’s going to turn out like. Carbonation and some time to really settle the yeast will make a difference.

Yeah I think eventually getting into water chemistry may be inevitable. I’ve been resisting for a long time.

I was actually planning on bittering with an ounce of Fuggle (trying to use it up) and getting all my IBUs with late Columbus additions. Just not familiar with Columbus so I appreciate the guidance with how much. What I put in beer smith is just like what you suggested minus the 20 and dry hop (so yeah not at all the same), wasn’t sure if I was over-doing it. I think I’ll make those adjustments.

[quote=“NewToTheBrew69”]Yeah I think eventually getting into water chemistry may be inevitable. I’ve been resisting for a long time.

I was actually planning on bittering with an ounce of Fuggle (trying to use it up) and getting all my IBUs with late Columbus additions. Just not familiar with Columbus so I appreciate the guidance with how much. What I put in beer smith is just like what you suggested minus the 20 and dry hop (so yeah not at all the same), wasn’t sure if I was over-doing it. I think I’ll make those adjustments.[/quote]

I would suggest using Columbus as the bittering hop. You won’t get many IBU’s from bittering with Fuggle, but Columbus packs a good punch for an IPA.

I would too but not sure how I can use up all my fuggles.

[quote=“NewToTheBrew69”]I would too but not sure how I can use up all my fuggles.[/quote]You could just toss them in the compost where they belong! :wink:

SOMETHING JUST OCCURED TO ME!

Should I just dry hop this beer? I’m talking about the 3.25 gallon batch. I got the Columbus ready to go! I could just throw it in there and leave it in the primary another week? I never dry hopped before. 1 ounce? 1.5 ounces? They are pellets.

Also oxidation was mentioned. What do you mean by that? You think its because I have a 3.25 gallon batch sitting in a 6 gallon carboy since Dec 26??

Yes I am starting to wonder if leaving a beer for a long time with a large head space (especially in a bucket but possibly in a carboy too) might not lead to some subtle oxidation flavors. A certain sweetness, a little spiciness and an overall dulling of malt flavor. I’ve been trying to transfer to a carboy of the right size when the fermentation stats to settle down, and transferring lots of yeast so it doesn’t stall out on the finish and cleanup. Then being more prompt about the steps in general. Not many batches doen this way but I do think that, combined with my efforts on water, I’m getting better malt flavors.

Interesting. I think next time I’ll try getting the beer into the keg or in bottles faster in the future, like 2 weeks. I also think I may drop the gravity more to like 1.040 on future “starter” batches.

Thanks for the info, and input all.

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