The target style was somewhere between an Irish Stout and an Oatmeal Stout. My typical brews are seriously big beers with OG of 1.080 and higher. This time i decided to tone down the alcohol, hops and crystal malts in favor of a dry, roasty complexion. I also wanted to experiment with some of the more common added flavorings. This is no Voodoo Doughnut, don't worry.
I haven't decided what to call this one yet. I keep forgetting which brews are which though, so i may take the time to print out some labels for this beer. Suggestions for names are welcome, though i'll probably wait until i try the first bottle. This was a 5 gallon boil (starting) with an added 1 gallon in the carboy. After the hour boil and straining out the hop pellets, it's still 5 gallons in fermentation.
Thanksgiving Stout (partial extract)
Steeped for 30 minutes at 155F
1/2 pound oats (5%)
1/2 pound roasted barley (4%)
1/4 pound chocolate malt (1.5%)
In the boil
3 pounds pilsen light DME (44%)
First hop addition
1 oz UK Golding (60 minutes total boil), 5.2% AA
Second hop addition
1 oz Fuggles (30 minutes total boil), 4.0% AA
3 pounds golden amber DME (44%)
Edinburgh Ale Yeast (recommended for malty and medium-high abv beers). I prefer a liquid yeast as i've had much more consistent yeast activity this way. Blow-off hoses and gummy airlocks should be rare!
In the primary fermenter
16 oz cold-brewed coffee (Costa Rican light roast)
In the secondary fermenter (next week)
2 oz unsweetened cocoa powder
1 vanilla bean, split
A few things about this brew deserve notice. For example, UK Golding hops are mellow enough to be used as finishing hops, but i've decided to use them as bittering hops. In total, this beer has a calculated IBU around 32 (take that with a grain of salt, as Matt pointed out in a previous post) which is far below my usual range of 50-70. I have a bad tendency to overhop, which is fine for IPAs and big, malty stouts, but not so much for the nut brown i made last year.
I've spiced and/or oaked beer in the past, but this was my first foray into using coffee, chocolate and vanilla. My brew-books suggested that 4-6 ounces of coffee was enough to season a 5 gallon batch, but the Sam Adams Black & Brew claims 1.5 pounds per barrel, which with some really fuzzy math figures out to about 5% coffee. My 16 ounces of coffee runs at about 2.5%, so that seems fairly reasonable for a mild coffee character.
|No explosions forthcoming!|
That's it for this brew for now! If anyone happens to know where i can get a retired bourbon cask, though, let me know. I'd love to use that for a future brew.