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Old 03-08-2013, 09:34 PM   #1
Demus
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Default Smoked dubbel?

I'm planning a Belgian dubbel, pretty standard recipe except I'd like to hit it with a touch of smoke. I recently had a scotch ale at a brewpub that reminded me of a dubbel and I'd been thinking of brewing one anyway....
Anyone with experience using smoke have any suggestions? I was thinking one of the smoked malts right in with the mash (6gallon all grain batch). I'm shooting for the 1.065-70 range and want just a hint of smoke; I'd rather barely taste it than have the smoke cover all the other flavors...



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Old 03-08-2013, 09:48 PM   #2
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You can use smoked malts or do it the olde fashion way. I recently brewed a double coffee stout using the German steinbier method. I put a bunch of granite rocks over an oak fire for about two hours or basically the entire time of my mash. Then I added those to my kettle and sparged into it and then completed my boil as usual. The rocks where black with smoke when I put them in and I get a slight smokiness from it. You can also put those rocks into the fermentor and let the yeast do its work on the caramel that's on them. I don't like using plastic so I didn't do that as I couldn't get the rocks into my carboy.



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Old 03-08-2013, 10:13 PM   #3
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A smoked dubbel? Sounds eenteresting. Make to report back, if you do end up making this. I'd be very curious about how much smoked malt you use.

I've had a couple smoked beers that were unbearable and others that had just a nice, light hint of smoke. Definitely don't need much of that flavor.

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Old 03-08-2013, 11:01 PM   #4
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The amount of smoked malt to use depends on the supplier / smoking method, and your desired smokiness. I would recommend against peat smoked malt. Briess (cherry wood) is very good, and you'll want to use 20% for a subtle smokiness (some people won't detect the smoke at 20%). 10% would be barely noticeable to anyone. Weyermann (beech) is much more subtle, and 20% is probably imperceptible. In fact, 100% weyermann isn't even that smoky if you have lots of other flavors like hops and spices. You can open up a bag of Briess and Weyermann and you'll see exactly what I mean.

I've made a couple 1.070 rauchbiers (similar to Schlenkerla Urbock) using an all Weyermann base. Wonderful, absolutely wonderful.

Based on your goals, I'd suggest 25% Briess or 40-50% Weyermann.

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Old 03-08-2013, 11:25 PM   #5
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I recently had the same desire to produce a well balanced smoked beer. I wanted to make a smoked Amber Ale, with the smoke adding a level of complexity to the beer as opposed to dominating the beer. I also wanted to smoke the malt myself, as opposed to just buying smoked malt - figuring I could control things a little better+ have some fun with it. If it was too little or too much smoke, I could adjust my process next time to dial things in.

Since I wanted a less aggressive smoked character, I used apple wood to smoke my malt. I spread out about 15% of my base malt(Marris Otter) on a cookie sheet. I then lightly misted the uncrushed grain with spring water (I did not want any chlorine present). Being careful to keep the temperature between 175-200 degrees, I smoked the malt over the apple wood for about an hour, lightly misting and stirring the malt every 10 minutes for a total of about an hour. I am really happy with the result. The smoked character is definitely there, its smooth and it fades, allowing the taste of the Wyeast West Yorkshire Ale yeast that I used to come through.

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Old 03-09-2013, 12:28 AM   #6
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I think 20% Breiss sounds like a good place to start. Anyone else done something like this?

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Old 03-09-2013, 03:28 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Demus
I think 20% Breiss sounds like a good place to start. Anyone else done something like this?
I tried to make a smoked helles with 20% Briess (which I sort of alluded to above). Friends of mine were skeptical it was actually a smoked beer -- yeah, it's that subtle. (And they were right; it wasnt smokey enough to be a smoked beer). After several months in the bottle, any smoke disappeared to me.

So if you're playing it conservative and don't mind the smoke being borderline imperceptible, 20% is a decent starting point.
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Old 03-09-2013, 03:53 AM   #8
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Maybe 25% then huh? I do want subtle; not necessarily a smoked beer just touch or undertone of smoke...



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