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KnotHeadGrady 12-11-2012 06:33 AM

when to add sugar to boost my alcohol chocolate stout
Hey all I'm experimenting with a chocolate mint stout and adjuncts. I want to add some crushed candy cane to this chocolate mint stout in hopes of increasing the alcohol content and leaving a bit of residual mint flavor to accent the chocolate (sounds kind of crazy I know) when is the best time to add this? Candy cane crushed is basically cane sugar so I figure it will be fully fermentable. What do you think?

I was thinking when the primary fermentation slows down I would add 1/2 lb of crushed candy cane dissolved into sterilized water (a syrup)

GilSwillBasementBrews 12-11-2012 07:55 AM

I would add it after primary fermentation settles down. If your looking for the flavor and not just the novelty of saying there's candy canes in your beer you could always add a few drops of peppermint extract till you get the flavor your after.

Pratzie 12-11-2012 07:58 AM

I'd go with peppermint extract instead of crushed cane. Just think its a safer bet then using actual candy canes. Could be different sugars in there that AREN'T fermentable. Besides, when candymakers make candy canes, they add peppermint oils and extracts to their sugar batches to give it that flavor.

rhinoceroceros 12-11-2012 02:01 PM

I don't know what's in candy canes for sure, so don't take my word for it, but I assume they're made of sugar and peppermint oil/extract so, assuming the sugars are fermentable, you'll boost ABV, maybe dry it out a bit, and add peppermint flavor.
I've never added candy to my beer but I've heard if it being done to good effect with jolly ranchers.
Keep us updated with your results if you decide to add the candy cane, I'd like to know how it turns out.

Homercidal 12-11-2012 02:08 PM

I think right as the rigorous fermentation dies down would be good. It's common to add plain sugar at that time and you might lose less aroma through the airlock.

KnotHeadGrady 12-11-2012 05:16 PM

Thanks guys! I think I will try adding it after fermentation dies down a bit as suggested and then when I rack to the secondary I will take a taste and see if adding extract might be a good idea. I'm not looking for too strong of a flavor just a hint. I will keep you all posted

daksin 12-11-2012 07:19 PM

It'd probably be easiest to make a sryup, and that also takes care of any sanitation worries.


KnotHeadGrady 12-11-2012 07:56 PM

Cool yeah thanks for the link. I bought a 9 Oz box of canes and plan on using distilled water heated up. I'm hoping this about half a pound will be enough

KnotHeadGrady 12-24-2012 03:50 AM

The stout turned out great! The 9 Oz of candy cane dissolved in a pint of water gave it a nice mint finish without overpowering the chocolate malt. The only problem I had was that it was a little "thin" as far as body but that could be because the fg was 1.006

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