Too dark of Color when brewing extract IPA's

Discussion in 'Homebrewing' started by trentbrown89, Oct 23, 2013.

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  1. trentbrown89

    trentbrown89 Initiate (0) Feb 13, 2013 California
    Beer Trader

    I've brewed a couple based on recipes I have found from reputable Sources, however the Color has been much darker than I would like. I have been using pretty standard light LME from homebrew shops around my area.

    Any suggestions on keeping the SRM's closer to what I would expect for a typical IPA?

    i.e..... LME vs DME or particular brands?

    Thanks!
     
  2. MADhombrewer

    MADhombrewer Initiate (0) Jun 4, 2008 Oregon

    Use extra light dry extract. The liquid seems to always come out darker than the dry. Are you using any specialty malts when you brew it?
    In fact, list the last recipe you used.
     
    jae likes this.
  3. jmw

    jmw Initiate (0) Feb 4, 2009 North Carolina

    Add the majority of your extracts as a late addition (last 15 min).
     
    afrokaze likes this.
  4. trentbrown89

    trentbrown89 Initiate (0) Feb 13, 2013 California
    Beer Trader

    Don't have the exact recipe with me right now but I used 1 lb. of Carapils as a steeping grain, and about 6lbs of light LME.
     
  5. trentbrown89

    trentbrown89 Initiate (0) Feb 13, 2013 California
    Beer Trader

    I have yet to try that, I'm assuming this won't effect anything other than Color? Thanks!
     
  6. MADhombrewer

    MADhombrewer Initiate (0) Jun 4, 2008 Oregon

    Never mind then. Carapils will add very little, if any, color.
     
  7. jmw

    jmw Initiate (0) Feb 4, 2009 North Carolina

    You will actually get a little better hop utilization to boot.
     
  8. trentbrown89

    trentbrown89 Initiate (0) Feb 13, 2013 California
    Beer Trader

    Excellent, thanks so much for the advice!
     
  9. kjyost

    kjyost Initiate (0) May 4, 2008 Manitoba (Canada)

    Using DME over LME is a good suggestion too, because as LME ages it gets darker due to melanoidin production that continues in the presence of water that DME does not due to its low water content (~2% rather than 20%)
     
  10. trentbrown89

    trentbrown89 Initiate (0) Feb 13, 2013 California
    Beer Trader

    Sounds Good, I figured DME may be the way to go. Thanks!
     
  11. InVinoVeritas

    InVinoVeritas Zealot (567) Apr 16, 2012 Wisconsin
    Subscriber Beer Trader

    I had my first beer, a Wit, come out way of color-caramel. Are you perhaps scorching the LME? That's another benefit of DME, as the liquid sinks like a rock when adding it to the boil. This is why I pre mix my LME in a room temp second kettle, which doesn't get direct heat. Once mixed I as the mixture into the main kettle.
     
  12. SFACRKnight

    SFACRKnight Meyvn (1,026) Jan 20, 2012 Colorado
    Beer Trader

    Fresh. LME is key. Try to get your lme from a lhbs that moves a lot of product and steer clear of the beer kits. Who knows how long they have been there? Not you, maybe not evenn the shop you find them at.
     
  13. Homebrew42

    Homebrew42 Initiate (0) Dec 20, 2006 New York

    Muntons extra light dry malt extract can produce very light colored beers, as can most dry pilsen extracts. Liquid extracts always tend to be darker than dry, even more so as they age.
     
  14. OddNotion

    OddNotion Devotee (478) Nov 1, 2009 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    Another thing to consider which I did not see mentioned which is not extract related, but do you do full or partial boils? Partial boils can lead to a darker wort when compared to full boils.
     
    BushDoctor and DubbelMan like this.
  15. stella77artois

    stella77artois Devotee (498) Nov 4, 2010 New York

    This seems like the general consensus. I just brewed my first beer, a DIPA, and I had the same issue w/ the beer being too dark (not that appearance is a huge thing to me, but I'd like it lighter colored), and plan to try this during my next batch.
     
  16. BushDoctor

    BushDoctor Initiate (0) Oct 27, 2007 New York

    I think the above is more important than the extract itself.
     
  17. trentbrown89

    trentbrown89 Initiate (0) Feb 13, 2013 California
    Beer Trader

    My current set up allows me to only do partial boils.
     
  18. Irrenarzt

    Irrenarzt Disciple (358) Mar 1, 2009 New Mexico
    Beer Trader

    Most of the things have been already mentioned but you absolutely need to do full boils with pilsen DME and only add the extract in with 15 minutes left. That's as good as you can do with extract with respect to lowering your SRM.
     
  19. OddNotion

    OddNotion Devotee (478) Nov 1, 2009 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    Unfortunately, I think this is your main culprit.
     
  20. beer272

    beer272 Initiate (0) Sep 23, 2009 New Jersey

    put ~25% of the LME up front, and the rest in the last ~15 mins. That will get you lighter beers. I remember I put ~all the LME in the end, and the drink came out tasting different, so you want to use some up front.
     
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