First batch of beer - TASTY!!!
Posted Aug 20th 2011 | By:
Bottled my Irish Stout, my very first attempt with brewing, three weeks ago. Too tempted to allow it to sit too long, I popped one open on 8/6 - a week after bottling. It had very little carbonation, which I expected, and the hop flavors were quite strong; mix that with the *two* cloves I included in the last hop addition (with 5 minutes left on the boil) it was quite a mix. It wasn't bad but I had not had my heart set on how it was going to turn out. Nice medium body. I tried the Stout again with two friends on 8/13 to get some objective input. One really noted a strong clove flavor at the end that he found out of place; we all agreed that the beer still needed additional carbonation, though the carbonation level had improved. The beer had more head but little head retention. Overall the aroma was awesome - a good, strong, hoppy scent, definite floral note, followed by clove. Conclusion: lets let it sit a while longer and try again... hoping that the clove would dissipate and/or blend with the florals (drat, because I really HATE drinking beer and performing quality control!!! ). Today, we tried some more... and funny to watch how just a little time can really change things. Conclusion: TASTY!!! Nice strong hop flavor remains, but the spicy clove note has mixed nicely rather than being its own 'entity.' Awesome head retention, after the pour into glasses it was at about an inch high, and dissipated to about a half-inch - and stayed - for the remainder of the serving. Aroma - again, nice strong floral hop notes, just a hint of spice and the appearance of a somewhat 'chocolate' note which I am attributing to the dark grains used during the steep. Not much yeast in the bottom of the glass which I am taking to mean I racked well - I also used a secondary fermenter for the second week so most of the sediment was gone during this time frame. Awesome warm brown color! I think this will continue to blend and age nicely. I am so happy with the results, the beer is nothing like I expected and is one of the better beers I have experienced in a long, long time. Cheers!