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Old 07-02-2013, 07:11 PM   #1
mChavez
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Default Improving kit stout? Oak? Coffee?

Hi!

I've just mixed up my last kit beer which is a Munton's export stout.
I'm tempted to "dry-hop" it with oak chips or ground coffee beans.

Has anyone tried it and got good results?

Thanks!

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Old 07-03-2013, 02:02 AM   #2
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Sorry, I have no experience with oak or coffee but here's something else to consider. Does your LHBS carry any Top Shelf Spirit Essences? You can get these in 50ml bottles. I've used the chocolate cream as outlined in Cooper's Choc-Liqueur Stout recipe (from the recipe section of the Cooper's website). Basically a couple of days after the krausen has fallen you pour in the spirit essence and give the beer a gentle stir an then leave it until bottling. This does change the flavour of the stout to add an additional light chocolate note.

Some people recommend waiting until bottling day and to add the spirit essence to the bottling bucket along with the priming sugar solution. I don't know if that would work better or not since I just followed the Cooper's recipe (tasted good to me).

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Old 07-03-2013, 02:49 AM   #3
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I'm not sure that you'll be able to taste any amount of oak over the flavor of the stout. Coffee, maybe. The chocolate cream mentioned above would work nicely, as would brewed coffee (not too much - maybe a cup). A little lactose would smooth it out some.

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Old 07-03-2013, 04:40 AM   #4
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Half cup burbon.

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Old 07-03-2013, 07:31 PM   #5
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Thanks!
Will try something out =)

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Old 07-04-2013, 02:01 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sptaylor70
I'm not sure that you'll be able to taste any amount of oak over the flavor of the stout.
Really? There are a ton of oaked or bourbon barrel-aged stouts out there, and you can taste a difference vs. the "plain" stouts.
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Old 07-04-2013, 02:33 AM   #7
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I've brewed the Munton's kit before, and it is already a full-flavored roasty dry stout. One can certainly try oak, but I don't think it will make a difference. Bourbon would be a surer bet.

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Old 07-04-2013, 09:26 AM   #8
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I used to buy a raspberry syrup from the 'polska' section of the supermarket and add it to the primary making sure to adjust my DME addition for the extra sugar it added and make a raspberry stout which was pretty good. Obviously some syrups/cordials can be highly synthetic and also filled with preservatives which though unlikely, may inhibit fermentation so be sensible with ratios, keep an eye on labels etc. At a pinch I always believed I could 'fix' this by boiling or exposing to air, possibly my background with wine making sulphites.

A girlfriend once picked up a 500g bag of 'crushed malted barley' when passing a place once as a small surprise gift assuming I could find use for it in homebrew. I was exclusively brewing extract but mashed it with a small amount of oatmeal and strained it and boiled it adding it to a stout kit. Added something I guess but stout is very dominating flavour wise.

Another stout I kegged and added to the keg about 1/2lb of roasted coffee beans. This I stored up for a few months, occasionally rolling the keg for luck. Turned out very nice, a smooth addition as they went in cold. Don't know if it could be a possible contamination risk but boiling coffee obviously strips out all the harsh components compared to cold steeping it. I wouldn't grind it/use grounds. You'd get greater utilisation at the expense of having bits in your beer. Bottled some of it from the keg and the last bottle was drank about a month ago, almost 2 years later. Still ok, but pretty flat.

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Old 07-05-2013, 06:21 PM   #9
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Either BYO or Zymurgy magazine just did a big section on adding coffee to beers, at work so I can’t give you the issue number but I did look online and found an informative article on it.
http://www.byo.com/stories/item/315-brewing-with-coffee
Not as good as the one in the magazine but still not bad. I plan to jazz up a porter sometime soon with Sumatra and am going to do the cold steep method and introduce it at bottling time.

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Old 07-05-2013, 06:27 PM   #10
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Stz, strange you cite that boiling coffee removes the harsh notes, as many whom I know that cold brew their coffee do it because it makes as smoother, less bitter drink. You have to properly dilute cold brew if you want to drink it for coffee, but I always thought cold brew was better for beer for just that reason, no?

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