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Old 11-15-2013, 01:24 AM   #1
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Default Recipe for peat malt

I recently tried a LHBS that I don't normally frequent and they had a peat smoked malt that smelled so interesting that I wanted to try and use it in a recipe. But I'm not sure what to use it in. Any suggestions?

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Old 11-15-2013, 01:27 AM   #2
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Typically people put it in Scottish beers--not because Scottish beers are brewed that way these days (and indeed, they haven't been for hundreds of years, according to Radical Brewing), but because Scotch (whiskey) has peat in it, so it makes some geographic sense. I love peated scotch but brewed a beer with peated malt in it and will never do so again (or at least, not for another few years, until I forget how much I didn't like it). It just didn't do it for me. But some people love it, so don't take my word as the final one on the subject. Typical usage is about 1-4 oz per 5 gallon batch (that is, far less than the normal usage for plain old smoked malt). You could possibly use it in a different dark beer--say a stout or porter--where its robust flavor might stand a better chance of blending in.

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Old 11-15-2013, 01:42 PM   #3
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Those are good suggestions. Sadly I have an Irish Red Ale that I just kegged, and I have a porter ready to rack to the secondary. Both of those might have been a good candidate. My next few brews will probably be on the light side so I will have to hold off a while. I think it might go well in the porter if I hide it. I might go very conservative and just try 1 or 2 oz to be safe.

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Old 11-15-2013, 01:58 PM   #4
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It would be easy to add the peat flavor to the porter in the secondary--you're not looking to convert anything to get the peat flavor, so you could steep the grains in boiled water, and then add that liquid to secondary, if you wanted to. Might be sort of thematic in an Irish red too, since they use peat for fuel there. But yeah, try an ounce, see what you think. Your results may vary!

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Old 11-15-2013, 09:27 PM   #5
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I hadn't thought about steeping the grains. Another good idea. But the porter is scheduled to be mixed with raspberry puree to recreate the recipe from Brewing Classic Styles so I might skip it this time. But next time I hit the store maybe I'll grab some of the peat malt and do a mini steep just to get an idea of the flavor.

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Old 11-15-2013, 09:42 PM   #6
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I love smoked food, pipe tobacco, and the smell of a campfire.......I HATE smoky beer. Sorry, not meaning to be a pooper, I just suggest you try a smoked beer before commiting 5 gallons.

Before I tried one, I was 100% certain that I would like smoked beer.

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Old 11-16-2013, 02:31 AM   #7
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The usual recommendation with peat malt is to use a light hand, as it has a very strong flavor that many do not like. I don't follow that advice. I've used it in heavy doses and been quite happy. I haven't been so brave as to brew the peat smash that's in these forums, but I made a peated cherry stout (2lbs peat in 4 gallons) once that I liked a lot.

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Old 11-16-2013, 02:42 AM   #8
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Well, there's no half-stepping with this recipe:

100% Peated Ale by Alchemist

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Old 11-16-2013, 02:44 AM   #9
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I've used peated malt in both scotch ales and an irish red. Both were very good. I added just enough to give an earthy note to the beer, but not make it smokey at all.

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Old 11-20-2013, 01:11 AM   #10
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I'm pretty fond of a smoke flavor in a beer as long as it isn't too powerful. But I'm not sure about having 5g worth in the keg so I might consider bottling it.

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