I like to experiment, a lot… in fact, most of my beers as of late have been experimental in one way or another…

… but I also follow one rule of my own…

… you have to know where you are going… as the old adage says “if you don’t know where you are going, every road will take you there”…

Well, I just brewed a Belgian Dubbel… and there were some things a bit unclear mainly because categorizing Belgian beers is not exactly as straightforward as categorizing American ales…

I tried a few variations of Dubbels and some lacked characteristics as described in the BJCP guidelines, but it’s an actual Dubbel… Bornem Dubbel brewed by Van Steenberge was another example that was… different… albeit good…

And although the beers are different they have good flavors, which any good brewer should be able to duplicate and know how to get them…

So here’s what I wanted to know… according to literature I’ve been reading, brewers claim that their Dubbels get their aroma from dark malts like crystal and Special B… and that dark candi syrup is where they get their color…

By tasting these ingredients, I think that it’s the opposite… I think the chocolate aroma comes from the candi syrup, while the color and dried fruit flavors come from the darker malts…

If you’ve ever tasted D-90 candi syrup, it has a really nice chocolate flavor, which I think is where the aroma comes from in many Dubbels… I expect more dried fruit or raisiny flavors from the darker malts…

To find out I decided to keep those malts out of my recipe and see what the dark candi syrup has to offer…

Now, another thing I’ve been playing around is to treat the keg as if it were the bottle…

I’ve read about many brewers who use the candi sugar to prime their beers… so I went ahead and used the candi sugar to make the beer go through a re-fermentation process in the keg… essentially treating the keg as if it were a big bottle…

… that way if it doesn’t attenuate completely, I can always pitch more yeast to the keg rather than to individual bottles…

I tasted the beer when kegging and it was good… I’m planning on leaving the keg at room temperature for about 7 days and then cold condition it for about two weeks…

Stay tuned for the final results and in the mean time here’s the video of my experimental Dubbel…

http://youtu.be/0sAunoCr-LE

***************** Special Announcement ******************

For a little over 8 months I’ve been working on the planning and developing of a website where I can bring more brewers together who are eager to learn more about brewing beer and who want to share their expertise…

We have finally launched the Beta version of the site and know that there will be a lot of features that will hopefully help filter out good brewing information from bad information to help more brewers brew better beer…

Although the functions are limited as of now, you can see the Beta version of the site and start posting your questions or introductions at: http://betterbrewingnetwork.com

I answer dozens of emails daily and while I like helping people one on one, I think it will be beneficial for others to see the questions and replies, so soon I will be answering questions through the forum for the benefit of other brewers…

Next week we’ll do the official launch provided no major bugs or fixes are needed by then…

Along with improvements… Better Home Brew Formula has been going through a major update and new videos will soon be released followed by a major update to the ebook…

I expect to have this training available on DVD and printed manuals by the end of this month or beginning of next month at the latest…

Cheers!


    2 replies to "Experimenting With Belgian Brews"

    • David

      hello.can u tell me bout using the wort to prime the beer .i have seen this topic on your site but can’t find it any help on this would be very helpful tks .dave

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