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When is a beer considered "big"?

At what OG do people start to consider a beer “big”? 1.070? 1.080? 1.100?

In my opinion, 1.070 and up, or about 7% ABV and higher. But I think you’ll get varying opinions on this question.

I normally start considering them big when they hit 1.075 and then they fall into the stupidly big range once they get over 1.1 of which I have done two. That said a 1.060 beer can be bumped up into the “big” category with excessive body and/or hops. It’s all objective.

Hrm…so it’s not just about alcohol content?

Over 1.075 is what I consider big.

Hrm…so it’s not just about alcohol content?[/quote]
For me, it is mostly about alcohol content.

Yeah, for the most part it is about alcohol but I brewed a monster tasting Chocolate Oatmeal Stout that I put on Nitro that fell in at 1.060 and I would put it in the big category just because of the gigantic body and taste. Big is in the eye of the beholder.

I consider big to be over 1.070 as well. That’s when I start using 2 packs of dry yeast or more than a 1L starter.

I think 1.070 and up is a pretty good parameter when considering ‘big’ beers (but I also agree that big can describe flavor as well as octane).

Then again, these days it seems a lot of people consider 1.070 a ‘session’ beer. :shock:

lol! My current level of beer knowledge is only very recently acquired (started really reading up when I started brewing in January), but based on my understanding of what “session” is traditionally meant to convey, I think the 4% threshold makes the most sense. 4.5% still kinda works, but once you get to 5% or more I think the term stops making sense and/or starts to represent a redefinition.

Anyway, the Belgian Dubbel I am aging started at 1.070 and was kicked up about 3 points by 8oz of candi syrup during primary. It sounds like I can fairly safely consider it my first big beer (even have pics of the blowoff to go with it :wink: ).

[quote=“ickyfoot”]lol! My current level of beer knowledge is only very recently acquired (started really reading up when I started brewing in January), but based on my understanding of what “session” is traditionally meant to convey, I think the 4% threshold makes the most sense. 4.5% still kinda works, but once you get to 5% or more I think the term stops making sense and/or starts to represent a redefinition.

Anyway, the Belgian Dubbel I am aging started at 1.070 and was kicked up about 3 points by 8oz of candi syrup during primary. It sounds like I can fairly safely consider it my first big beer (even have pics of the blowoff to go with it :wink: ).[/quote]
My first big was a double IPA with a gravity of 1.083. I’d hadn’t strayed above the 1.065 range before that one.

1.070 is where I start calling it “big” also. My first big beer was the second extract brew I made. Strong Belgian Ale using 3 cans of malt extract; didn’t really know what I was doing or I would have been intimidated.

I couldn’t tell you the last time I brewed a beer under 1.060. The last three were 1.068, 1.082, 1.075.

Most of the beers I brew are in the 1.060-1.070 range.

“Big” is defined by ABV to me - anything over 9%.

Hrm…by that measure, I might have to say 7% for me. That’s around the point where I tend to hurt myself if I don’t adjust consumption levels for the higher ABV.

1.085 and above for me.

Anything below ~7% is a session beer for me. So big would be 8.5

[quote=“muddywater_grant”]I couldn’t tell you the last time I brewed a beer under 1.060. The last three were 1.068, 1.082, 1.075.

Most of the beers I brew are in the 1.060-1.070 range.[/quote]

Hero tag is appropriate.

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