The 1st stout of the season is in the tank so fall my be getting here. This beer is a slight revision of last years Irish Stout, which turned out really well and was a big hit. It was a very sessionable and complex dark beer and a nice contrast to the usually strong stouts of the fall/winter season. This batch brought a few changes from the original, mostly trying to achieve a slightly drier beer. I ended up dropping the crystal malt and reducing the flaked barley and adding some malted wheat in its place. The roasted malts stayed the same but I did have to sub out the yeast strain as I couldn’t find the same one I used last year. I went with a very similar strain, Wyeast 1335 – British Ale II, which is a clean english strain that favors the malts over hops and should be a good one for this beer.
Mash: 149 (50 min.)
Boil: 60 min.
Mash pH: 5.4
54.7% NW Pale Ale Malt
9.9% Smoked Malt
9.9% Red Wheat Malt
9.9% Flaked Barley
7.5% Roasted Barley
5.6% Chocolate Malt
2.5% Dextrose (added during boil)
0.60 oz Nugget (15.1%) 60 min.
1.50 oz Pilgrim (9.1%) 0 min.
1.00 oz Pacifica (4.9%) 0 min.
Wyeast 1335 – British Ale II
Made a 1 liter starter two days before brew day and pitched into 65 degree wort. Planning on fermenting this around 67 until warming up to finish off fermentation. With such a low gravity, I’m assuming this will be done in a couple of days.
Kegged on 10.8, finished at 1.o11. Just a few points higher than I was guessing but still in the ball park. Sample had a huge smokey aroma.
Tasting Notes – 11.12.16
Aroma: Coffee, chocolate, a hint of smoke.
Appearance: Jet black with a decent tan head that fades away after a minute or so. Clarity is perfect.
Taste: Chocolate, espresso and smoke up front with a nice malty backbone. Smoke blends with the roasted malts really well and can easily be missed if you weren’t looking for it. Very smooth, no up front bitterness and really balanced. There’s a nice rounded malt profile that compliments the smoke and roast qualities of the beer.
Mouthfeel: Medium to medium will with medium carbonation.
Overall: Love how this one turned out. Last years beer was really nice but this is drinking even better. The smoke and roast mesh really well together and this years edition has a little richer malt character without any caramel sweetness that was in last years beer. The drier finishing gravity has really made this beery incredibly drinkable and there is pretty good body as well. A great winter session beer that is disappearing quickly from the kegerator. Cheers.