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Black Hybrid Recipe/Hop Schedule

I’m certainly open to critique on this recipe as well, which is meant to be something like a dark cream ale that doesn’t come across as roasty, something like a Cascadian Dark minus the high IBU’s and citrusy/piney hops as I want something more noble hop-like as I want something somewhat like Boston Lager, but with more hop presence.

6 gal partial mash recipe:

5 lbs pilsen LME (FO)
3 lbs 2-row
1 lb crystal 20
3/4 lb carafa III special
3/4 lb brown sugar
1/2 lb crystal 80
6 oz carafoam
1/4 lb Briess chocolate 350*

6.4% ABV
32 SRM’s

I’m thinking high 30’s to mid 40’s for IBU’s.

I’m trying to use up my older hops. The dates are dates received. Below the dotted line are the newer hops that I’d prefer not use, but have in case a blend using them would be superior. This is what I have:

1 oz packs:
Perle 8.9% 11 '12
Mt Hood 5.9% 11 '12
Santiam 7.2% 2 '13
Cluster 6.8% 1 '13
Palisade 7.1% 2 '13

Liberty 4.9% 10 '13
Willamette 5.2% 10 '13

2 oz packs:
Willamette 4.7% 3 '13
Perle 7.5% 12 '12

Liberty 4.9% 10 '13 (2)
Willamette 5.2% 10 '13

Initially I had given it a hop schedule of:
.6 oz Willamette/.2 oz Cluster & Perle
.7 oz Willamette/.4 oz Cluster & Perle
36 IBU’s

I wanted to raise it up to about 40-45 IBU’s and considered throwing an oz of Mt Hood. I’ve never really mixed these noble hops together before as I usually used them in low IBU wheats and blondes and such.

Any help would be appreciated!

Use Perle at 60 for half of your IBU’s and Mt. Hood for flavor/aroma for the rest.

Why use the Perle only for bittering?

You don’t have to use Perle just for bittering, just trying to give you a simple tasty option.
I would keep the Perle and Hood together because it tastes good. Well at least for me.
Mix it up a little if you like, a little perle at the end might be nice.

I was curious if there was a reason such as just the higher AA’s or it just didn’t taste as good or mix well.

I had changed this up quite a bit. It’s bottled now, and I’m not so patiently waiting to try it.

This is what I ended up making:

4.5 lbs pilsen LME (FO)
2.75 lbs 2-row
1 lb crystal 20
1 lb brown sugar (FO)
0.75 lb midnight wheat
0.5 lb crystal 80
0.5 lb soft white wheat berries
6 oz carafoam
0.25 lb carafa I spl
0.25 lb chocolate 350
0.2 oz (ea) Cluster/Mt Hood/Perle/Liberty @ 60 mins
0.4 oz (ea) Cluster/Mt Hood/Perle/Liberty @ 20/5 mins

6.4% ABV
37 IBU’s
38 SRM
~72.5% efficiency

My FG dropped to 1.009 and so it’s about 6.8% ABV.

I know you’d intended on calling this beer a sort of dark cream ale, or “lite” CDA. Personally I would refer to this beer as a standard robust porter, or since this one is a little on the strong side, perhaps call it a “really robust porter”.



I’m actually hoping more for an amberish flavor with possible mild roastiness. It’s why I subbed out the carafa special for midnight wheat as I only wanted a black color.

Not that I don’t like a porter or stout, but I’ll be a bit disappointed if this turns out to be such.

I understand. I just don’t see any way out of the porter business. Unless you were to go with Sinamar for all your blackening desires.

What is Sinamar?

Does midnight wheat, in larger quantities such as mine, give a roasty taste as well? I was told it was the best thing to use to get the color without much flavor, and to use it over the carafa special I had in its place.

Sinamar is a deep brown / almost black color extract made from dehusked black malt. It’s what cheaters use in their CDAs. I refuse to use it, but hey, if you’re so inclined, buy some and try it. It’s even Reinheitsgebot-compliant since it’s made from malt.

I had used a bit of carafa II special in my CDA and it didn’t come off as roasty to me.

Were you to make what I’m after how would you go about it?

Why is it you dislike using Sinamar?

Sorry I can’t be of much more help – I have no experience with trying to make a black beer that doesn’t taste black.

I won’t use Sinamar because I feel like it is cheating. And I wouldn’t use blue or green or purple extract in my beer… so why would I use black Sinamar?? That’s my personal feelings on it. But thousands of other people love the stuff. Knock yourselves out, I don’t care. In the meantime, I look forward to Purple IPA whenever that gets invented.

Is there a way you could go about doing it in which you didn’t feel as though it were cheating?

Far from a porter. It seems much closer to a brown with a slight hint of roastiness, though I was a bit surprised that the chocolate came through as well as it did in this 6 gal batch.

Certainly not what I was after, but still a nice beer. I’ve revised my recipe, but want to stick with grains and not use Sinamar.

My latest revision is:

5 lbs pilsen LME (FO)
2.75 lbs 2-row
1 lb crystal 80
10 oz midnight wheat
4 oz carapils
2 oz chocolate 350
0.75 oz Willamette @ 60/20 mins
0.5 oz Willamette @ 5 mins

5.4% ABV
28 IBU’s
30 SRM

Popped one open and I’m thinking that maybe it is somewhat porter like. It seems slightly more roasty and less chocolatey today. Maybe I shouldn’t have put them in the fridge a few days early. I’m typically quite patient and usually even give four weeks to ferment and condition with a week in the fridge, but I just had to know on this one.

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