Planet Beer

This is a blog about making beer, primarily ME making beer. However, it will also teach you how to homebrew---either all grain or with little cans of goo. Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Software Expectations

So you might ask yourself, "what can I expect from my shiny new software demo pack?". Me too! I'm switching to Brew Smith from ProMash, because ProMash hasn't done an update in three years or so. Still, it's been good to me.

One thing brewing software positively sucks at is telling you what color your beer will be. Both ProMash and Brew Smith predict Studly Monk to be 26.4 SRM, which is more or less brown. It's clearly orange---and very likely nowhere near 26 SRM. The color of the Belgian candy sugar we used was predicted at 275 SRM, which I think is way off.

The best uses I've gotten out of brewing software are to predict the effect of hops on overall bitterness, changing the size of batches, and to figure out my target gravity. Despite what I said about color, it does help with that too sometimes. Still, the best way to predict color is to keep good notes!