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Old 11-06-2011, 01:39 PM   #1
bighorn_brew
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Default All-grain Porter recipe help please

A friend gave me a mini fridge that I am converting to kegerator, and I want to hook him up with a nice beer to enjoy shortly after Thanksgiving. I want it to really shine so I am going to pay particular attention to all the basics. I have a limited amount of ingredients on hand, yeasts include:
Nottingham dry
Windsor yeast cake from a small beer I just made on stove top
safeale us-05 dry
1007 german ale liquid
1187 ringwood ale liquid

He likes hoppy ipa beers, but during the winter months moves toward darker beers, so I am thinking a robust porter (similar to pigs ass porter if anyone has had that, a london style porter). I want the malt to shine, but not in a overwhelming way, thats why I am thinking Nottingham dry yeast, fermenting 65 degrees.

Can you see faults or suggestions you might make to this recipe, I have some cascade hops on hand, and rye malt, US 6 row, US wheat malt, basmati rice. Thanks in advance and looking forward to hearing your suggestions.

screen-shot-2011-11-06-7.22.42-am.jpg  
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Old 11-06-2011, 03:10 PM   #2
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I think it looks fine the way it is, though I would probably consider breaking hop the Willamette hops. I would boil 1 ounce for 60 minutes, and 1 ounce for 30 minutes, or maybe even 15 minutes. I don't like Cascade in my porter or stout, so I would keep those as far away from the kettle as possible.

The oats are probably optional, as well. Is this going to be kegged or bottle conditioned?

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Old 11-06-2011, 03:16 PM   #3
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Kegged probably...it's going to give me a good reason to get a 2.5 gallon or 3 gallon mini corny so I can lend him the mini...
edit: I love the head retention I've been getting and suspect it due to using oats, nice n rocky and long lasting...

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Old 11-07-2011, 02:09 AM   #4
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Might want to work in some black patent, which gives porters their roasty character. No need to use two different kinds of pale ale malt unless that's what you're going for.

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Old 11-07-2011, 02:22 AM   #5
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The UK malt is Maris Otter, never used it before and heard good things about it, and since its for a good friend I wanted it to be special. So here is the recipe I ended up going with....chilling now in a snow pile, so I have yet to pitch the yeast.

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Old 11-07-2011, 04:58 AM   #6
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It's debatable whether you'd be able to tell the difference between a good quality Maris Otter over your basic American pale malt in something like a robust porter, but if the price is right, try it out. I brew almost exclusively with Maris Otter. Sure, it's a bit more expensive, but open a sack of Briess and stick your nose in it. Now find a good MO and do the same. The difference will be night and day, I guarantee. Of course, the more you pile on the specialty malts, the less you can taste the difference in the base, but you can't go wrong with it. I'd go 100% MO or none at all. Also consider a pound or two of Munich for some extra maltiness.

The only other thing I'd consider is the rye you mentioned. I don't use it all the time, but some rye (maybe a pound of the malted or flaked stuff) adds a piquant, spicy complexity to porters and stouts that I really enjoy. It's something different that, if done right, is difficult to pick out if you don't know it's there. It's this bare hint of fruity, spicy complexity that's just at the taste threshold for most. It plays especially well with patent malt, I think. Of course, if you know it's there, it's easy to pick out. The best part is, when you get asked what your secret is for such a great beer, you can just smile, laugh, and keep them guessing.

Oh, and one more thing - if you want this to be ready for Thanksgiving, consider a smaller beer. I find really dark beers need extra time to condition. A robust porter, with a pound or more of roasted malt, is usually at it's best 2-3 months after brewing. That's not to say it won't be good in 3 weeks, but it will still have a lot of sharp, harsh notes that will only be beginning to fade by that time.

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Old 11-07-2011, 11:53 AM   #7
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Thanks for the tips, I was a hair away from adding about as much rye as you mentioned...hoping for approximately the impact you described...dang.
I am hoping to have this ready for him about the 7th of December...after about a week in primary (assuming the nottingham is finished which I suspect it will be), I'm going to transfer it, then let it cool to my shops ambient temp which is about 36-40 farenheit, then let it sit till kegging time.

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Old 11-07-2011, 11:26 PM   #8
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Take it for what it's worth. Here's how we brew our porter. We use three seperate mash tuns. The tuns are held at different conversion temps, 150, 155 and 162. The two lower temp tuns are triple decoctioned. The high temp tun is a single infusion. We use a mixture of mild, pale, 10l Munich and Black Prinz. After conversion and mash out, all three tuns are poured into the lauter tun and fly sparged. The wort is boiled for four hours, with brewers licorice and hops added two and three hours into the boil. This method makes a velvetty smooth beer, tight bubble, great head and without any rough edges.

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Old 11-08-2011, 06:31 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VladOfTrub View Post
Take it for what it's worth. Here's how we brew our porter. We use three seperate mash tuns. The tuns are held at different conversion temps, 150, 155 and 162. The two lower temp tuns are triple decoctioned. The high temp tun is a single infusion. We use a mixture of mild, pale, 10l Munich and Black Prinz. After conversion and mash out, all three tuns are poured into the lauter tun and fly sparged. The wort is boiled for four hours, with brewers licorice and hops added two and three hours into the boil. This method makes a velvetty smooth beer, tight bubble, great head and without any rough edges.
Yowza! That sounds like a lot of work! Bet it makes a great beer, though.
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Old 11-08-2011, 07:29 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VladOfTrub View Post
Take it for what it's worth. Here's how we brew our porter. We use three seperate mash tuns. The tuns are held at different conversion temps, 150, 155 and 162. The two lower temp tuns are triple decoctioned. The high temp tun is a single infusion. We use a mixture of mild, pale, 10l Munich and Black Prinz. After conversion and mash out, all three tuns are poured into the lauter tun and fly sparged. The wort is boiled for four hours, with brewers licorice and hops added two and three hours into the boil. This method makes a velvetty smooth beer, tight bubble, great head and without any rough edges.
I need to level up before I get the dual-triple decoction ability. With any luck I'll be able to make porter soon!
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