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Stout Critique

I had made a stout with the intentions of having a nice coffee flavor. I added far too much citrusy hops and over carbed it a bit. It had a funky clash for a long time, but eventually it faded enough to really enjoy it.

I’ve redesigned it and would like opinions. Keep in mind I want it to turn out coffee-like without cold brewing coffee since I drink too much coffee as it is. This is a partial mash.

4 lbs Golden Light LME (FO)
2 1/2 lbs Briess 2 -row
1/2 lb crystal 60
1/2 lb crystal 120
6 oz Briess chocolate 350
1/2 lb roasted barley
1/4 lb black patent
3 oz carapils
1/4 lb light DME
1 oz Mt Hood (5.9%) @ 60/20/5 mins
3/4 oz Liberty (4.9%) @ 60/20 mins
US-05

1.052/1.010
38* L
5.5% ABV
47 IBU’s
3.9 gal boil
5.5 gal yield
2 gal top off

I ferment for 4 weeks, condition for 4 weeks, and refrigerate for 1 week.

Thoughts? Recommendations?

Lets see, I’d ditch the carapils because it won’t have any noticeable effect at that level. I’d also stick to just crystal 120, 60 is going to get swamped out in that grist. I’d maybe look into using some kiln coffee malt for some coffee flavor, but you should get a nice dark roast character from the recipe as is. For hops I’d just go with a 60min addition of about 20-25IBU and leave it at that.

Here is the best dry stout recipe that I have made. I think it has some roast, chocolate and coffee flavor.

7 lb 2 row
1 lb flaked barley
8 oz carapils
8 oz roasted barley (525)
6 oz choc malt (350)
4 oz Kiln coffee malt
4 oz c 120

OG 1.047
IBU 41 (some bittering hop at 60, I think it was Magnum)

Bru’n H20 with the “black balanced” water profile

WY1084 at 62*

I agree with Lennie’s points above…

Was there a specific type of coffee flavor you are going for? acrid? acidic? roasty? tangy? nutty? chocolatey? I get a lot of these flavors out of different types of coffee (Starbucks = acrid; Dunkin = nutty).

Had you considered a different yeast? s-04 might give you a little more balance/slightly lower attenuation with the roasted grains and a slight tang/acidity similar to good coffee.

I’ve had head retention problems and began adding wheat DME, but have moved to using a little carapils now.

I buy my grains locally as they’ll sell them in the amounts I need, and they don’t carry any sort of coffee malt.

The coffee flavor I am going for is just a typical strong black coffee flavor. Like Columbian coffee. I had the Tatonka stout at BJ’s and liked it.

I don’t think you need kiln coffee malt to get what you’re wanting. Keep the carapils if you feel it helps, might consider some quick oats instead since this would go well in a stout. Otherwise go for it and report back on this thread.

I brewed a coffee stout several months back and, though it’s quite good, I will be making a few changes next time:

Less black patent - it made the beer to sharp for me
More chocolate malt instead
Us-04 instead of 05 to get that extra character out of it
Double the cold brewed coffee addition at bottling

Thanks a lot tom sawyer! Just when I thought my recipe was ready…now I’m thinking of oats as I loved the few oatmeal stouts I’ve had!

But I don’t know just how much grains I can work with in a 4 gal BIAB setup, and I have my LME, my 2 row, and crystal malts. I’m afraid I don’t have enough room for too much more. How much oats would it take for this 5.5 gal batch?

Or maybe I can utilize SWMBO’s ~5 qt pot also. I do have another large BIAB bag…

I read up on it and see it’s common to use about 1 lb or 2 for a 5 gal batch. I looked into the pantry and see we have something like 3/4-1 lb of oatmeal. My batch size may be a little bigger, and I may not have quite enough oatmeal, but I think I’ll give it a shot. With that much it ought to give some sort of presence even if it’s not quite upfront.

Revised:

4 lbs Golden Light LME (FO)
2.5 lbs 2 row
.5 lbs crystal 60
.5 lbs crystal 120
.5 lbs Briess chocolate 350
.75 lbs Briess roasted barley
1.25 lbs oatmeal
2 oz carapils
.25 lbs light DME
1.5 oz Mt Hood & 0.5 oz Liberty @ 60/20 mins
US-05

1.059/1.011
33*L
6.2% ABV
48 IBU’s
3.9 gal boil
2 gal top off
5.5 gal yield

Ferment 4 weeks @ 64-68*, condition 4 weeks, refrigerate 1 week.

I’ve also considered using decaf coffee as SWMBO accidentally bought the wrong one. Were I to do a cold brew how fine would I want to grind it, how much would I want to use (5.5 gal batch), and for how long does it need to be soaking? But is it even needed or helpful?

Looks good. The oats don’t necessarily add a lot of starch for mashing but they lend a nice body nd mouthfeel. On the coffee, I’d make a strong cold-steeped batch of about a quart and add that to secondary or the bottling bucket if you don’t secondary. I don’t think you’ll need it though.

[quote=“rodwha”]I had made a stout with the intentions of having a nice coffee flavor. I added far too much citrusy hops and over carbed it a bit. It had a funky clash for a long time, but eventually it faded enough to really enjoy it.

I’ve redesigned it and would like opinions. Keep in mind I want it to turn out coffee-like without cold brewing coffee since I drink too much coffee as it is. This is a partial mash.

4 lbs Golden Light LME (FO)
2 1/2 lbs Briess 2 -row
1/2 lb crystal 60
1/2 lb crystal 120
6 oz Briess chocolate 350
1/2 lb roasted barley
1/4 lb black patent
3 oz carapils
1/4 lb light DME
1 oz Mt Hood (5.9%) @ 60/20/5 mins
3/4 oz Liberty (4.9%) @ 60/20 mins
US-05

1.052/1.010
38* L
5.5% ABV
47 IBU’s
3.9 gal boil
5.5 gal yield
2 gal top off

I ferment for 4 weeks, condition for 4 weeks, and refrigerate for 1 week.

Thoughts? Recommendations?[/quote]

I’d say you really need to consider using some KilnCoffee malt from Franco-Belges maltsters.It’s a very dark caramel malt,bordering on a roasted malt.I used it in an oatmeal stout last year,and it definitely contributed a very pronounced coffee/caramel character at the rate I used it at (8% if memory serves me right),to the point where I would cut back on it in the future.It used to be a more popular malt than it seems to be now,but I think you might still be able to find it.Also,I’d have to say that your hopping rate seems rather high by my standards.If you want a stout that’s drinkable sooner,I’d highly recommend cutting the IBUs down to around 38 or 40,and use a variety that’s not so citrussy,although the hops you’re specifying in your recipe are not at all known for having an excessively citric character,so I don’t know what’s going on there.For my stouts,I’ve never found a better hop than Nothern Brewer,either American or British.It just works beautifully.

I don’t generally order my grains online since they only come in 1 lb increments, and my LHBS no longer carries it.

It was recommended by the guy running the store to use Special B. I’m not sure if it comes across as roasty or coffee-like in large quantities, but didn’t seem fitting to me.

I have a fairly large stash of hops, some dating back to 2012, and so I’ve decided to use up some of the older ones. I knew citrusy hops were bad, and these were the only other type I have. Mt Hood, Liberty, Santiam, and Willamette.

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