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Old 05-14-2012, 03:42 AM   #1
MicahB
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Default Mountmellick Irish Stout make 5 gallons?

Hey guys,

I've been lurking on the board for a good 6 months now, slowly gleaning all the info I could from you "pros" while slowly assembling my equipment. Well, to make a long story short I'm pretty much set with everything I need to stop buying and start brewing. So, over the weekend I stopped into my LHBS and picked up a can of Mountmellick's Irish Stout and zipped home squealing like a little girl ready to whip up my first batch of homebrew. That's when things got confusing...

The directions say to add the can of LME to 1 gallon of warm tap water?(Wouldn't I want to bring the full volume of water to a boil and add the LME and then flame out for sanitation at least?) I was also hoping to make 5 gallons with this kit but it says it only makes "up to 3.6 US gallons?" Is there a way to increase the volume without thinning out the beer?

Thanks for letting me post my first post in pure, ignorant, newbie fashion,

Cheers!

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Old 05-14-2012, 03:59 AM   #2
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You have a couple of choices here. You can go back and get a second can and brew a double batch. If you do two cans in 5 gallons, then you would have a pretty STOUT stout (alcohol content would be pretty high.)

Another choice is to pick up about 1.5 pounds of malt extract and an ounce of mild hops like Kent Goldings. Add 1/2 ounce of hops at the beginning of the boil, and then add the extract with about 15 minutes of boiling remaining. The extract will keep the beer from "thinning out " and the extra hops will balance the extra malt and keep the beer from becoming too sweet.

I prefer the second option since I like to be in control of my recipes, but the first option is probably the easier route for your first batch. If you need help with recipe additions, you should look into a brewing software like beersmith. It is designed to help you understand what each change will do to your finished beer.

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Old 05-14-2012, 03:13 PM   #3
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Awesome! I that sounds like that will work perfect! One last thing, would 1/4 oz of hops be too little if I like my stouts a little sweeter? Or would that just make a screwy imbalance of flavors?

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Old 05-14-2012, 03:34 PM   #4
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You certainly could use dark malt extract. Since the rest of the recipe is a canned kit with no specialty grains, then a dark malt extract would probably add some roasty flavor. According to my brewing software, 1.5 pounds of dark malt extract with one ounce of Kent Goldings makes a beer with 1.3% alcohol, and 24 IBU's The style guidelines call for 30 to 45 IBU's in a dry stout, so adding these ingredients with the full ounce of hops to your kit would likely result in a finished beer that is SLIGHTLY sweeter (or at least slightly less bitter) than normal. If you reduce the added hops to 0.5 ounce, then the added sweetness would be increased even more. Because I am not a hop-head, I have even been known to add up to 1.5 pounds of additional malt extract to a kit recipe with no added hops at all. It is hard to accurately calculate the true effect on the finished product, because my brewing software does not have the Mountmellick kit in the database. If you can give me a list of the ingredients in the kit, then I can plug them into the software and let you know exactly what the effect would be on the end result.

By the way, what yeast comes with that kit? Probably the best addition to most canned extract kits is replacing the included yeast packet with a quality yeast like US-05 or Nottingham.

If you want to experiment with recipes yourself, get beersmith, or go to www.brewersfriend.com and try the "recipe builder" tool.

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Old 05-28-2012, 04:26 AM   #5
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Thanks tons for all the help, Seth! I appreciate the link, that should help a ton in the future. As for the recipe, I think I'll venture to try only adding 1/4 ounce, being that it will be the first beer on tap next to a cream ale; I really want the wife to find it drinkable!

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Old 05-28-2012, 08:16 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MicahB View Post
Thanks tons for all the help, Seth! I appreciate the link, that should help a ton in the future. As for the recipe, I think I'll venture to try only adding 1/4 ounce, being that it will be the first beer on tap next to a cream ale; I really want the wife to find it drinkable!
That will work fine. What you end up with will probably be closer to a "sweet stout" (sort of like a milk stout, without the lactose). Should be a very good, very drinkable beer, especially for helping lure cream ale drinking wives to the dark side!
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Old 06-09-2012, 02:56 AM   #7
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So I finally brewed this up yesterday! I went with about 0.7oz of EKG for 60 minutes and then added 1 pound of Dark and 1 pound of Amber DME at about 5 minutes left. I started with 6.25 gallons of water and ended with about 6 gallons. OG was 1.046, so I don't think I screwed it up too bad... Finished with US-05 and it looks like it's going to work nicely! Fingers crossed it turns out to be a decent "sweet-stout." Thanks again to DrummerBoySeth (AKA- DBS, AAKA- DaBombShizzle... you're welcome!) for all the help, I have high hopes for this batch!!!

Quick question though, I added my whirfloc late, I was already cooling with temp down to 180ish, and I just tossed it in the stir anyway, will it negatively affect anything? Or at worst will it just not work?

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Old 06-10-2012, 04:24 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by MicahB View Post
So I finally brewed this up yesterday! I went with about 0.7oz of EKG for 60 minutes and then added 1 pound of Dark and 1 pound of Amber DME at about 5 minutes left. I started with 6.25 gallons of water and ended with about 6 gallons. OG was 1.046, so I don't think I screwed it up too bad... Finished with US-05 and it looks like it's going to work nicely! Fingers crossed it turns out to be a decent "sweet-stout." Thanks again to DrummerBoySeth (AKA- DBS, AAKA- DaBombShizzle... you're welcome!) for all the help, I have high hopes for this batch!!!

Quick question though, I added my whirfloc late, I was already cooling with temp down to 180ish, and I just tossed it in the stir anyway, will it negatively affect anything? Or at worst will it just not work?
It will probably still work just fine. I do not think whirlfloc needs boiling to work. Even if it does not work, stouts are black so you probably wont notice the cloudiness if there is any.
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Old 06-11-2012, 01:50 AM   #9
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I have this kit and plan on adding the Dark DME. Do you think I really need extra hops too or will the kit be enough? I will pick some up if needed. What is a good amount of time to age a stout before consuming?

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Old 06-11-2012, 03:56 PM   #10
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I have this kit and plan on adding the Dark DME. Do you think I really need extra hops too or will the kit be enough? I will pick some up if needed. What is a good amount of time to age a stout before consuming?
Whether or not to add hops depends on your personal taste. Like I mentioned earlier in this post to the OP, you can add extract with or without adding hops. One ounce of EKG hops with 1.5 pounds DME will keep the beer fairly balanced (you are balancing the added maltiness/sweetness with added hops bitterness.) Reducing or eliminating the added hops will cause the bitterness level to drop (thus increasing the perceived sweetness/maltiness of the beer)

If you like really malty, sweet beers with low hops bitterness, then feel free to add extract without adding hops. If you prefer to keep the beer balanced, then add hops in balance with added malt. If you are a hop-head, then add hops without additional malt, or add hops in a larger ratio to increase the bitterness or hops flavor you are looking for.

The real question you need to ask to answer your question is "what do I want to do to the beer?" Modifying a recipe to increase alcohol content, increase sweet/malty character, or intensify hops character and flavor require different approaches.
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