"AF" Beers

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quantum8

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Has anyone tried, or got any recipies for ultra low alc beers similar in flavour to the upflow session ipa or the heaps normal brews?
 

BrewLizard

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I don't know those beers, but check out DIY Dog by BrewDog. Nanny State is 0.5%, Doodlebug is 2.5% and All Day Long is 2.7%.
 

sherwicf

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So I've tried 2 of different options when it comes to AF beers. The malty beer was better than the hoppy.

1) Post fermentation I took a milk stout I had only added half the usual bittering hops, and boiled it ~45 mins. Was very good but it wasn't AF, I'd say 2% or similar

2) XPA recipe 'Mash In' around 76C, or whatever you'd usually mash out at, so likely very little fermentable sugars made it into the boil/FV. Whirlpool hopped to ~25BU with Citra. Was a bit on the water-y side so I'd probably throw in a crystal malt or similar if I was try again

I've never checked the final Alc % of these beers because I'm not 100% how you'd actually calculate it accurately. Also I recently saw fermentis have come out with a yeast for low alc called LA-01. Not sure if you can get it in Oz as yet.
 

quantum8

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Thanks for the suggestions, I totally forgot about Nanny state as I thought it was a bit average when I tried it a while back, whereas the ones I mentioned have been my go to AF beers now. And locally made/owned too.

Good suggestion on the crystal malt XPA, will have to give it a spin soon.

Lets hope that LA-01 becomes available here, it seems like a great option.
 

MHB

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Just read the warnings on the LA-01 really carefully.

Get one normal yeast cell or bacteria into the beer and it will all go to shit very fast. Think seriously about Pasteurising all your beer in package.

I very seriously doubt you can mash grain at any temperature without making a lot more fermentable sugars than you are looking for. Alpha Amylase does make fermentable sugars; any mash that turns all the starch into dextrins will produce some glucose/maltose/maltotriose.
Mark
 

sherwicf

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Get one normal yeast cell or bacteria into the beer and it will all go to shit very fast. Think seriously about Pasteurising all your beer in package.
Isn't that always the case though?
I very seriously doubt you can mash grain at any temperature without making a lot more fermentable sugars than you are looking for. Alpha Amylase does make fermentable sugars; any mash that turns all the starch into dextrins will produce some glucose/maltose/maltotriose.
Yeh agreed you'll still get more fermentable sugars. Liek I said - I didn't take any OG/FG readings on it - but maybe I'll give it another spin and see how I go.
 

MHB

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Not so much, the Low Alcohol yeasts are a mutant that can only eat Glucose and some of them Sucrose but they can’t handle Maltose or higher saccharides.

Means that although the LA might be at its final gravity, there is a lot of unfermented sugars there (over 95%), so what’s in the bottle is about as fermentable as a no chill wort, think of it as lots of food for normal, wild yeast and bacteria.
Think of it as trying to condition unfermented wort, it’s pretty scary, as soon as you reach target carbonation - kill everything or bottle/keg bombs are pretty much guaranteed.
At a home brew level, be super careful

One of my favourite comments on brewing is “The art of making the world’s most fermentable substance, then trying to control what lives in it

Mark
 

contrarian

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I've made a few of these beers over the past year or so as my wife stopped drinking but enjoys an alcohol free beer so asked me to make some.

I've made a few pale ales based on the nanny state recipe and the best results I have had have been using about 60% crystal 40% base malt, mashing at 73C and aiming for a starting gravity of 1.018 and FG of 1.012. I have tried a few hopping regimes but I think 95% into the whirlpool is the way to go for my taste at the same g/l rate as a standard pale.

I have also made a lager that was 60% carapils, 40% atlas pilsner and fermented at 12C with a lager yeast. Similar gravities to above and this was very popular.

Finally I used the same wort above with a MJ french saison yeast. It finished lower and came out around 1% but in my opinion is the pick of the bunch.

The hard part is getting them to not taste completely watery which is why I use a high % of crystal and high mash temp so there's still some body.

I think what I am making is at least as good as any of the commercial offerings I have tried and I have sampled a few. The pick of the bunch for me are the Nort that is made by Modus Operandi and the Weheinstephaner wheat beer. The range is growing all of the time.

I think a lot use reverse osmosis to remove alcohol and a lot of them have a distinctive taste that seems less prominent in my homebrew versions... maybe it's just less time sitting on pallets in the sun!
 

BrewLizard

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Contrarian, could you please share your malt bill for your Nanny State version?
 

contrarian

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This wasn't an exact nanny state clone but was the last grain bill I used, it worked quite well in terms of balancing hop bitterness and providing some body.

25% Carapils
25% Rolled oats
12.5% SM40
12.5% medium crystal
12.5% Shepard's delight
12.5% wheat

Target OG of 1.018
Target FG 1.012

ABV 0.75%~

Mash at 73C for 45 minutes

2-3g/l of whirlpool hops of your choosing, for this one I used cascade and chinook at a 2:1 ratio.

Shepard's delight is powerful stuff and I might substitute this out in the future or reduce the amount.
 

contrarian

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Here's the Nanny State recipe from their website NANNY STATE - BrewDog Recipes

The reason that I modified this was because I found the end result really thin with no body to support the hops so looked at ways to get a low ABV with a FG that was more similar to standard pale ales.
 

Luxo_Aussie

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Had a fair amount of success a few months ago - I took a Bavarian wheat recipe & scaled it down to an OG of 1.016 while increasing proportions of munich and caramunich & raised the mash temperature to 72. Just 6 IBU's. Turned out a little watered, like a 3.5% beer down but still a success considering it was 1.3%. If doing this again I'd keep this base but add some oats, mash at 73 & add some new world hops late in the whirlpool, probably around 70.

The best commercial non-alcoholic has to be Rothaus - Tannenzäpfle Alkoholfrei. In a blind tasting you wouldn't know it didn't have alcohol & tastes better than many of the alcoholic Pils's on the market.
 

Nullnvoid

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I'm interested in this thread. Been drinking a lot of NORT lately and enjoying it. But would be good to make my own. For the cost, I figure trying the Nanny State recipe is ok as there isn't much to lose.

Also, I keep reading the thread title as "As F**K beers". For example, Good AF beers, or Shit AF beers. Just me? Ok, I'll see myself out.
 

JB

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I'm interested in this thread. Been drinking a lot of NORT lately and enjoying it. But would be good to make my own. For the cost, I figure trying the Nanny State recipe is ok as there isn't much to lose.

Also, I keep reading the thread title as "As F**K beers". For example, Good AF beers, or Shit AF beers. Just me? Ok, I'll see myself out.
Get AF out Nully!
 

BrewLizard

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I made Nanny State and was thoroughly disappointed. Nice hop aroma, nice body, but awful harsh bitterness. Probably because the BU:GU ratio is huge.

Anyone had a similar experience?

Going to give up on NA beers and focus on hop water, Berliner Weisses and session IPAs instead.
 

Luxo_Aussie

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I made Nanny State and was thoroughly disappointed. Nice hop aroma, nice body, but awful harsh bitterness. Probably because the BU:GU ratio is huge.

Anyone had a similar experience?

Going to give up on NA beers and focus on hop water, Berliner Weisses and session IPAs instead.
Yeah - I didn't follow the Nanny State recipe fully when I saw the BU:GU ratio on that beer. Normally I shoot for 6-10 IBU's on my low alcoholic beers.
 

contrarian

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I made Nanny State and was thoroughly disappointed. Nice hop aroma, nice body, but awful harsh bitterness. Probably because the BU:GU ratio is huge.

Anyone had a similar experience?

Going to give up on NA beers and focus on hop water, Berliner Weisses and session IPAs instead.
My approach to hopping Ultra Low Gravity (ULG) beers is a similar approach to xpa's. Basically wait after flame out until the wort is around 85C or below and then add a shed load of hops into the whirlpool. I no chill and find this is the best was to avoid harsh bitterness. I also adjusted my recipes so that there was a finishing gravity of around 1.010-1.012 through mashing at 72-73C and using a high percentage of crystal malt and have found this came out much better than when I followed the Nanny state recipe.

It will never taste the same as alcoholic beer because of the impact alcohol has on flavour but you can certainly produce very drinkable beer in a range of styles around the 0.5% mark in my experience.
 

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