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Old 10-02-2010, 01:42 AM   #1
Commander_Nate
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Default Rough Stout Recipe Idea - Seeking Some Advice

Hi all, so this weekend I'm hoping to get going on my 4th batch of home brew. My previous 3 have all been predetermined recipes from the local brew shop for the most part. This will be my first attempt at doing my own recipe from scratch. I'm not totally sure what I want to use yet, but I have a few ideas and was hoping for some advice on what might be a good mix or what to avoid.

Malt Extract: One of my prior batches was an Imperial Stout that used 11 pounds of Coopers Light Malt Extract. It turned out well enough so I figure I may use this again. If there's any others that might make a good stout, I'd love to know.

Hops: I want to use Pacific Gem for my bittering. I've never used it before, but I'm sort of intrigued by what I've heard about it. I've heard it can be tricky so if anyone has any experience with it, I'd love to hear it. I was considering something like Tettnang, Willamette or Fuggles for my aroma.

Specialty Grains
: I was thinking some Crystal 60L, Roasted Barley and Chocolate Malt, possibly a little Caravienne as well. This is the part of the recipe I'm least sure about, so any advice here on what works best together would be most appreciated.

Yeast: Originally I was planning on using California Ale or Pacific Ale Yeast, but then I started thinking I might want to do something a little different and use something like a heffeweizen yeast to try and add some more fruit flavors in there. I haven't found anything yet saying that's a good or bad idea, so maybe I'll find out. I'd like to avoid totally ruining my recipe with the wrong yeast though.

This is going to be a typical 5-gallon batch and I typically go to Home Brew Mart in San Diego for my supplies, although I may try this place in North Park I heard about that might carry some additional ingredients.

Any advice you all have would be much appreciated. Thanks in advance!

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Old 10-02-2010, 02:34 PM   #2
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Might be easier to post input if you put a complete recipe down with grain and hop weights and contributions.

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Old 10-02-2010, 06:18 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Naked_Eskimo View Post
Might be easier to post input if you put a complete recipe down with grain and hop weights and contributions.
I was thinking something along the lines of this:

11 pounds of Coopers (or other malt extract)

1/2 pound each for the grains, steeped for 30 min.

2 oz for my aroma hops, added 5 min before the end of boil.

I'm not sure how much Pacific Gem I'm going to use, because I've read it's pretty powerful.

Sorry if this isn't that detailed. I'm still pretty new at this.
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Old 10-02-2010, 11:43 PM   #4
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What size batch? And are you use liquid or malt extract?

You definitely want to get some bitterness in there, so I would recommend some hops in for a 60min boil. Not familiar with Pacific Gem, so cant speak about their bittering quality. But in a stout, you probably want a little bitterness in there to balance it out (maybe 30-40IBUs) and less aroma...in a stout, you want the flavors and aromas of the roasted grains to shine through, not the hops, so dont worry some much about aroma hops.

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Old 10-03-2010, 04:12 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Naked_Eskimo View Post
What size batch? And are you use liquid or malt extract?

You definitely want to get some bitterness in there, so I would recommend some hops in for a 60min boil. Not familiar with Pacific Gem, so cant speak about their bittering quality. But in a stout, you probably want a little bitterness in there to balance it out (maybe 30-40IBUs) and less aroma...in a stout, you want the flavors and aromas of the roasted grains to shine through, not the hops, so dont worry some much about aroma hops.
Standard 5 gallon batch. I'm probably going to be using liquid malt extract.
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Old 10-03-2010, 08:16 PM   #6
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Jeepers, that's a big beer. I'm going to offer you some advice I offer most new brewers:

KISS.



Many new brewers want to try brewing massive or Frankenstein beers in their first few batches. These beers seldom turn out as well as the brewer hoped. Said brewer gets discouraged.

I advise you to stick with simple, tried and true recipes before you go too far out on a limb. Keep the OG below 1.060. Get to know a yeast strain. Get to know a few basic ingredients like your bulk extract, a couple of roasted grains, a couple of caramel/crystal grains, and how they perform. Get to know a few hops varieties.

Think about it: If you use one bulk extract, two roasted grains, two crystal grains, two varieties of hops and two different yeasts, you have dozens of different styles and combinations you can try. With pale extract, Roasted Barley, Chocolate Malt, 60L Crystal Malt, and CaraVienne malts; with Cascades and Goldings hops; with S-04 and S-23 yeasts, you can brew the following styles:

American Stout
American Brown Ale
Northern English Brown Ale
Southern English Brown Ale
Brown Porter
American Pale Ale
English Pale Ale
Bitter
Premium Bitter
ESB
IPA
Dortmunder lager
Bock
Pale lager
SMaSH
American Amber Ale
Pale Mild
Dark Mild

...and that's just what I can think of off the top of my head. Add a Belgian yeast and suddenly you've expanded your horizons even more.

Read up on different styles. Learn what flavors define them. Learn what ingredients make those flavors. Master the styles you like before you break out of "the box". Mastery assures success when you start to stress or break the norm. And mastery of the basics is the place to start.

You dig?

Cheers!

Bob

P.S. Oh, and welcome to the obsessio...er...hobby!

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