Cascadian Dark Ale recipe

Any suggestions? I found this one on BYO but am really unfamiliar with the style so don’t know if this is one I should try.

Turmoil Cascadian Dark Ale clone
(5 gallons/19 L, all-grain)
OG = 1.070 FG = 1.010
IBU = 94 SRM = 35 ABV = 7.9%

11.5 lbs. (5.2 kg) 2-row pale malt
18 oz. (0.51 kg) Weyermann Carafa® II malt (450 °L)
18 oz. (0.51 kg) Munich malt
8.0 oz. (0.23 kg) crystal malt (40 °L)
12 oz. (0.34 kg) wheat malt
3.0 AAU Columbus hops (first wort hops) (0.2 oz./5.7 g of 15% alpha acid)
1.3 AAU Simcoe hops (first wort hops) (0.1 oz./2.8 g of 12.8% alpha acid)
7.0 AAU Magnum hops (60 mins) (0.5 oz /14 g of 14% alpha acid)
6.4 AAU Simcoe hops (60 mins) (0.5 oz /14 g of 12.8% alpha acid)
4.0 AAU Amarillo hops (30 mins) (0.4 oz /11 g of 10% alpha acid)
2.6 AAU Cascade hops (15 mins) (0.5 oz /14 g of 5.25% alpha acid)
2.6 AAU Cascade hops (2 mins) (0.5 oz /14 g of 5.25% alpha acid)
3.9 AAU Cascade hops (0 mins) (0.75 oz /21 g of 5.25% alpha acid)
1.25 oz. (35 g) Amarillo hops (dry hops)

White Labs WLP001 (California Ale), Wyeast 1056 (American Ale) or Fermentis US-05 yeast

In the little reading I’ve done, people have talked of cold steeping the dark grains as the style is not meant to be a “hoppy porter.” I’ve never cold steeped before, can somebody explain what that entails? I’ve also never used carafa before, and I may have read something that you can go ahead and mash it without worrying about it imparting that coffee/roasty flavor that black malts do.

The recipe looks pretty in-line with what a Cascadian Dark Ale is supposed to be (per BYO). If you were worried about getting too much astringency from the Carafa you could mix a little dehusked carafa in as to get the color without the roasted astringency.

Here is a good read for steeping, whether Hot or Cold, or Extract/AG. ... grains.pdf

I like it! I’m not a fan of roast flavor in my Cascadian Dark/Black IPA/whatever you want to call them so I’ll use the carafa III in mine. Grain looks good and hops are an awesome blend. I’m personally not a huge fan of the 30 minute addition. Especially for something like Amarillo that I would personally have trouble getting my hands on so I would lower it some where between 20-10 minutes for more of a noticable flavor impact but that might just be me.

What do you guys think about cold steeping if I use either carafa II or III (it might depend on availability)? Still a necessary or advisable step? Also any advice on a substitute for the simcoe? Apparently my LHBS doesn’t carry them and I would not want to trust UPS to get me from another source on time.

As far as the cold steeping goes I would just skip it for now. Seems like extra work and I think you should be fine. Skip it, taste and then decide for next time how you feel about it.
As for the Simcoe I’m not sure there is a terrific substitute. If you can order it I would order it and wait to brew. Otherwise something piney and citrusy? Chinook and Centennial? I don’t know?

Midnight wheat also makes a good addition for lots of color but very little roast character. Personally, I’d substantially up the dry hopping. As for the Simcoe, you could sub whatever as the FWH and 60 minute additions are really just adding bitterness so the hop character wouldn’t be that distinguishable.

I suppose I could just cut out the simcoe altogether and make up the difference with extra columbus for the the FWH and magnum for the 60 minute addition. Thoughts?