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Rednose leche de chocolate Milk stout recipe critique

hello every body!

Im somewhat new to brewing… have 3 batches % 5 gallons ea. / with steeped grains of beer so far

1st beer: Dry stout changed into coffee milks stout: finished, was pretty good!
2nd : NB choco. milk stout kit brewed as is: bottled on July 13th 2014 tasted one the next day so far soo good! obviously needs to bottle condition for a while

3rd beer: NB caribou slobber brewed July 6th 2014: will leave in primary for 6 weeks then bottle…skipping 2 secondary

:?: NEW Recipe Type: Chocolate Milk Stout Extract w/ steeped grains (NEED CRITIQUE)
Yeast: Wyeast 1450-PC - Denny’s Favorite 50
Yeast Starter: Yes
Batch Size (Gallons): 5.5 @ fermenter
Boil size: 2.5 gallons
Original Gravity: 1.055
Final Gravity: 1.014
ABV%: 5.43
IBU: 21.22
SRM (color): 40+
Boiling Time (Minutes): 60

6.0 lb Liquid Malt extract Dark ( maybe marris otter extract, instead?)
1.5 lb Dry malt Extract- Wheat

Steeping Grains:
0.75 lb Caramel/Crystal Malt - 60L
0.75 lb American chocolate
0.50 lb marican roasted barley
1.0 lb flaked/ Instant oats
0.5 lb american carapils
0.25 lb united kingdom - Extra Dark Crystal 160L

Hops: Bittering
60min boil
0.75 oz german magnum pellet AA:13.4 (IBU18.29)

15mins left in Boil: Aroma
0.5 oz Cluster pellet AA: 6.5 (IBU: 2.93)
IBU total: 21.22

4.0 oz of cocoa nibs in secondary for 2 weeks

1.0 lb lactose @ bottling

Looks like a kitchen sink beer to me…like something I might have created when I just started brewing. Skip the carapils and oats. No point to adding them with the lactose. Oats need to be mashed for conversion anyway. The other points I would make are more a matter of preference (e.g., why add a pound of crystal when your malt extract likely has crystal in it and the lactose is unfermentable sugar that will leave a lingering sweetness).

A rhetorical question for you to help you with design principle: can you describe the purpose of each ingredient and how they all work together? If not leave it out.

+1 to the above. Sweet stouts do tend to have a few different malts in them, but they are at low quantities. Crystal 80, Chocolate, Pale Ale malt, Black Patent. Boom.

Now that you’ve got a few batches under your belt, I would recommend reading Designing Great Beers by Ray Daniels. It is really a great resource of understanding how to formulate (good) recipes.

After brewing a few kitchen sink beers that didn’t turn out so well (one got a 23 in a competition), one other thing that I did that some (most) may find, well, boring: I spent a year brewing “boring” beers. I followed recipes to a T out of Brewing Classic Styles, with my goal being to brew them well, hone in my process (mainly cold-side/fermentation), enjoy them, and maybe win a comp or two. Box checked. At the risk of self-horn-tooting, I made some awesome “boring” beer in the process and opened my eyes to some new styles.

If you are looking for some good radio, check out Brewing Network’s Brew Strong with Jamil and John Plise. One 1-hour show on brewing each of the styles. Great stuff and you will learn a lot.
Anyway, sorry to give you more advice than you asked for, but brew on and good luck with batch #4.

Solid advice from Pietro. I need to pick up a copy of Brewing Classic Styles. One thing that stands out to me is to drop the dark LME and get your flavor/color from the steeping grains. I would sub ~5 lbs light or extra light DME if going with mostly extract.

You may want to try a partial mash. I’ve gained a noticeable improvement in quality with partial mash and the only thing I bought was a 2-pack of 5 gallon paint strainer bags from Lowe’s. Sub some of the extract with a couple/few lbs of 2-row or maris otter with whatever specialty grains you’re using (seems like a lot in your recipe btw). Stir into ~two gallons of 160ish F water and hold ~150-153F for an hour (a warm oven works great). Pull the bag, drain and dunk into or rinse the grains with 170F water (use as much as will fit into the brewing kettle afterward without a boil-over). If you’re steeping grains anyway this adds about a half hour, but IMO it’s worth it.

Thanks everyone… I really appreciate the constructive criticism… :cheers:

So much to learn…so little time LOL :smiley:

I will pick that designing beer book as well as watch the show with jamil guy!

I want to learn “PM” partial mashing (did i use correct term “PM” ?) and or just go str8 to all grain!

I’m thinking if i got partial i can at least hone my skills there… then move on to full grain!

I want and like to understand what i’m doing! Im open to all criticism anm and suggestion that’s how you get good if not better!

well at least I have my NB chocolate milk stout/ partial grain… Waiting to be drank in like 4 more weeks after bottle conditioning!

I’m tasting one a week >LOL

By the way brew people! …

im watching the Northernbrewer YOUTUBE video on partial Mashing and all Grain brewing… wow… PM doesnt seem so intimisddftaing

im barely 1/4 into video but so far so good I get it…

Ill be back and ask you guys some questions

Now I see what you meant by EXACTLY by I got 2 bags from Lowes (Mabus) …

Sorry if its a bit off topic but I went straight to all grain after my first 4 extract beers. There are a lot more variables but in my opinion you are making much better beer cause you can only do so much with malt extract. If you are thinking of taking the plunge i would probably skip PM and go right to all-grain but it is a bit of an investment in equipment.

But back on the topic of recipe formulation I just want to reiterate what everyone else said. Stick with known good recipes or kits. My first two beers were kits and my next two beers were recipes I made up. One of them turned out really good and the other one was a horrendous failure. So you’re taking a huge risk when doing your own recipe cause the average beer takes 6+ weeks to go from grain to glass and that’s a long time to wait to find out you made undrinkable crap.

After you have a good 10 or so beers under your belt, you can start taking some of your established recipes and tweak one thing or maybe two and see how that effects the outcome. Learn from our mistakes :slight_smile:

Having been through the process myself, I come from the school of thought that believes there is no value in mini-mash brewing–either from a beer quality perspective or from an educational perspective.

If you’re doing a mini-mash, you might as well do a full mash. From a mash process perspective, the only difference is the amount of water and grain used.

If you go all-grain, sure there is a risk that you will miss your target original gravity. If that happens, you have two options: (a) just roll with it (b) add a bit of extract or simple sugar to hit your target gravity. Either way, beer will be made and it probably won’t suck as long as your other processes (e.g., cleaning, sanitation, starter, fermentation temp, etc.) are in good shape. More importantly, you will learn something every time you do it.

If you go mini-mash for a while, and then go all-grain later, you will likely regret not going all-grain sooner. If you’re like me, you won’t listen to some stranger on the internet and you will have to learn this for yourself. I won’t take it personally if that’s the route you take. :slight_smile:

OK guys. You convinced me gonna pass on PM and head to all grain…all your brewers fault. LOL
Thanks for all your help. Will be asking questions that’s a given!!!

Read these two:

Good choice. I did 5 or 6 extract batches before I jumped to all grain. Best decision I’ve ever made next to kegging :slight_smile:

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