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Old 11-08-2011, 02:40 PM   #1
Matteo57
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Default Coconut Porter - No Head...Any ideas?

So I just recently started brewing as well as AG brewing and I just brewed yesterday a Coconut Porter that a friend of mine gave me a recipe to (posted below).
He never mentioned anything regarding head retention though and how to work around it nor did I think about how the coconut would effect it. Well this morning I woke up and checked on it and the airlock is bubbling away however there is no krausen whatsoever on the top and barely any bubbles except what is happening due to fermentation (small little bubbles bubbling on top of the surface of the beer but that is all). Anyways, is there anything to do NOW that I can make it so there might be a little head on the beer or is it going to be pretty much a flat beer? Also, in the future what could I change around on this that would help with head retention?

Thanks!

10.5 lb Maris Otter (for extract- 8.5 lb light extract)
1.25 lb Munich 10L Malt (extract- 1.0 lb Munich Malt extract)
1.00 lb Crystal 40L
1.00 lb American Chocolate Malt
.50 lb American Black Patent Malt
1.5 oz East Kent Goldings (4.5%) 60min
.22 oz Willamette (4.5%) 60min
.67 oz East Kent Goldings (4.5%) 15min

Yeast: White Labs WLP001 Cal ale

for all grain:
Mash @ 154
16 oz coconut flakes in the mash
8-16 oz coconut flakes in secondary (this is more about your own taste. i recommend going with 12oz in your first batch)

for extract:
16oz coconut flakes in secondary

for both extract and all grain:
bake coconut flakes in oven at 350deg until lightly golden brown.

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Old 11-08-2011, 02:54 PM   #2
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Fermentation isn't really an indicator as to whether or not your beer will have good head... at all. Every fermentation is different. Especially after only a day. I do suspect the oils in the coconut could contribute to lack of head, but you toasted them and they've been used before in outstanding beers.

In the future, typically carapils or flaked oats are used to help with head retention.

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Old 11-08-2011, 03:10 PM   #3
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Hmm OK, thanks! Just haven't seen any beers yet with no krausen at all... or heard about it but again... I'm pretty new at this still. Thanks

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Old 11-08-2011, 03:15 PM   #4
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Hey, me too! I just dove in head first a few months ago and have learned a LOT by brewing a whole LOT and by reading these forums. One major thing is to save any judgement for after fermentation. Can't really tell much about it while the yeast are doing their thing. But yea, the only thing that stands out for me is the oils from coconut, but like I said, I would imagine toasting them helps.

And I had a pumpkin ale that had ZERO krausen, barely any bubbles. Now that it's finished, bottled, and aged, it has no problem with head retention.

I wouldn't worry about it too much

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Old 11-08-2011, 03:20 PM   #5
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Hmm interesting! Cool thanks again! Yep, been reading and brewing all I can, it's quite a fun hobby/obsession!

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Old 11-08-2011, 03:25 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xjmox14x View Post

In the future, typically carapils or flaked oats are used to help with head retention.
Actually this is incorrect. Flaked oats and carapils are for mouthfeel, flaked oats can actually be a detriment to head on a beer if you use too much. flaked wheat, malted wheat and flaked barley can help with head retention.
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Old 11-08-2011, 03:32 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CidahMastah View Post
Actually this is incorrect. Flaked oats and carapils are for mouthfeel, flaked oats can actually be a detriment to head on a beer if you use too much. flaked wheat, malted wheat and flaked barley can help with head retention.
I'm not incorrect. I didn't say to use them improperly or overabundantly. When used properly, they both can add to head retention.

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/wiki/ind...ts#Flaked_Oats


http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f12/cara...d-oats-123722/
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f12/cara...e-what-162699/
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f39/oats...ention-112611/
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Old 11-18-2011, 01:29 PM   #8
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Oats can contribute to head retention, but on a smaller lever than other potentially better adjuncts. In some cases, as you noted, using copious amounts of oats actually count against you, such as in an oatmeal stout. My oatmeal stout had a smaller than usual head retention that clings to the rim, but it is small and the center of the brew barely had full coverage over the top, though it did. Partially this could be from the low carbonation I choose to serve it with.

Just saying that if I were to choose oats for a recipe it would be for the mouthfeel, which is generally what oats are best at.

If you want the bet head retention helper you are looking for a high protein adjunct - that would be wheat or barley IMO. If you look at the wiki you will see that oats have 9% protein and wheat has 16% and torrified barley has 16% with flaked at ~13%.

That all said I would argue you can add all the adjuncts you want and have unstable fermentation temps and not get the results that you are looking for. So adding all that stuff, may not help if other things are not in check.

I wouldn't talk about this stuff if I hadn't experienced it first hand in my brews. Trust me, oats isn't many peoples first choice for head retention because there are far better players out there IMO (including flaked and torrified barley if you don't want to risk any wheat flavors).

Just trying to give the guy the best advice I can based on personl brewing experience of my own - which is the point of these forums. Wasn't trying to cut you down.

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Old 11-18-2011, 04:50 PM   #9
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You may not have roasted the coconut enough to get rid of all of the oils, but the yeast will likely eat most of what's left, and there shouldn't be any issues with head or head retention. I used more coconut than that in my coconut porter, and it had a decent head on it. If you're really worried, roast the flakes that are going into the secondary a little longer, or use some paper towels to try and wick some additional oil off of them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CidahMastah View Post
Actually this is incorrect. Flaked oats and carapils are for mouthfeel, flaked oats can actually be a detriment to head on a beer if you use too much. flaked wheat, malted wheat and flaked barley can help with head retention.
That's pretty nit-picky, and I disagree completely about the carapils. It's used just as much for head and head retention as it is for mouthfeel. I use it a lot because it's so flavor neutral, and find it works just as well as flaked barley. There's more to head retention than just total protein content.

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Originally Posted by Briess
What makes Carapils® Malt from Briess the top performer in the dextrine-malt category? You'll find that it does a unparalleled job of consistently increasing foam, improving head retention and enhancing mouthfeel without adding flavor or color to your beer style
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Old 11-18-2011, 05:47 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JuanMoore View Post
You may not have roasted the coconut enough to get rid of all of the oils, but the yeast will likely eat most of what's left, and there shouldn't be any issues with head or head retention. I used more coconut than that in my coconut porter, and it had a decent head on it. If you're really worried, roast the flakes that are going into the secondary a little longer, or use some paper towels to try and wick some additional oil off of them.



That's pretty nit-picky, and I disagree completely about the carapils. It's used just as much for head and head retention as it is for mouthfeel. I use it a lot because it's so flavor neutral, and find it works just as well as flaked barley. There's more to head retention than just total protein content.
see me previous post juan - it addresses much of what you commented on.
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