Adding vanilla/coffee/chocolate during bottling phase
Forgive me if this has been touched upon clearly and succinctly somewhere else. There is simply too much material for me to find a quick answer!
Without getting into my reasons for not adding these ingredients during the boil/primary/secondary, I wish to experiment on a per bottle basis by adding various amounts of flavor. I did this once with honey - straight to the bottle of a Pale Ale - and it worked out better than expected.
I have an Imperial Porter/Stout that's ready to be bottled and I was tossing around the idea of throwing some stuff in some of the bottles to experiment. Three things I was tempted to add (separately or in conjunction) were vanilla, coffee, and chocolate. If anyone has any experience doing so at the bottling level, could you share a tidbit of advice? I know, I know, bottling probably isn't the best way to impart these flavors, but I'm trying it out anyway.
Vanilla - will be using extract - I realize that I'll likely have to add vanilla to a larger volume of beer (in the bottling bucket) because it's so potent.
Coffee - I was thinking of throwing in a whole bean(s) into the bottle. Will this have any noticeable effect without crushing, etc.?
Chocolate - What form would you recommend? As always, I want a subtle, complex flavor here that won't overpower.
If it's even possible to add these things during bottling, I'd be psyched. If not, perhaps next time I'll play around at another stage of the game and get some flavors kicking.
Thanks very much in advance!
I think your plan is good for the vanilla. I forget the recommended dosage, but if you do a search, im sure you can find some.
As for the coffee, some people do a cold steep. Take some grounds, steep them with cold water in the fridge for 24 hours. Then filter this through a coffee filter, etc and you can add the liquid to the bottling bucket. Again I forget dosage, another search should show that :D
As for chocolate, i think you will have a hard time at bottling. Since the chocolate is fermentable, you may have an issue with overcarbonation and bottle bombs. I have no idea on if you can use chocolate instead of priming sugar, the amounts, etc. They do make chocolate extract, but I have to imagine it wouldnt be as tasty as the real stuff
Thanks for the reply. I think I will skip the chocolate thoughts for now as I'm probably trying to accomplish too many things at once here.
I'm thinking now that I will throw my 5 gallons in the bottling bucket, bottle about 3 gallons of it, then add an appropriate amount of coffee and bottle another gallon. Finally, I'll add some vanilla so that the last gallon or so has both vanilla and coffee.
It might come out tasting like arse, but the small potential of creating something amazing is why we brew, right?!
Exactly, thats what brewing is all about. Experimentation and doing what you like! At least you have the 3 gallons that should be good and you can compare how bad (or good) your experiments are!
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