A short month ago we here at Flogthis Brewing brewed up our flagship pale ale recipe (available here, and here, the recipe, not the beer). Since the only way to tell if a change works is to keep everything else constant and judge against a previous batch, this last batch had 1 ounce of Sinamar added to the 10 gallon batch. I like how it looks and it doesn’t have that syrupy characteristic that I associate with caramel/crystal malt.
The first thing you notice is the color which is a golden amber with a white-ish head that stays for several minutes. The aroma has citrus, pine, floral scents. The first sips reveals a bitterness that is balanced with a bready malt flavor though there may be a hint of astringency in the aftertaste. I’ve been putting gypsum in the mash, which gives a better yield and makes the bitterness shine. Should I cut back on gypsum? Should I add some crystal/caramel malt? Should I cut back on my bittering hops? Or should I mash at 156F (68.9C) to give more body (but may give it that syrupy taste)? I can do only one of these, if I do more then I would not know which worked, or worse yet, which did not work.