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-   -   Samson's Chocolate Coconut Belgian Stout (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f68/samsons-chocolate-coconut-belgian-stout-268628/)

csamson 09-14-2011 04:43 AM

Samson's Chocolate Coconut Belgian Stout
Samson's Belgian Chocolate Coconut Stout:

10# Belgian 2-Row
2# Wheat Malt
1# Dark Candi Syrup (homemade)
.5# Chocolate Malt
.5# Pale Chocolate Malt
.5# Special B
.25# Roasted Barley

1oz Hallertau 60min
1oz Kent Goldings 30min
1oz Kent Goldings 15min
5oz Cocoa Powder 5min and/or Cacoa Nibs in Keg

1# Toasted Shredded Coconut (In keg for one week)

Wyeast 3787

Mash @ 154F for 75 min
Ferment @ 68F until fermentation slows then raise to 70F

OG - 1.069
FG - 1.014

I am going to be brewing something like this for an upcoming competition at a local brewery within the next week. I've done some research on Belgian stouts and this is what I came up with for a base recipe. I wanted to get everyone's thoughts on this and see what you think I should change or keep the same. I've used coconut this way in the past with very good results, so I'm pretty set on that. As far as the base recipe goes I'm open to any suggestions.

Thanks for the help!

Crustovsky 09-19-2011 10:26 PM

Last time I tried something like this I got some... interesting results. The candi syrup I used (snick's double cooked from here http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f12/20-lb-sugar-jar-yeast-nutrient-114837/) was massively over-powering and I only used about half a pound for 5ish percent of the grainbill. It was actually pretty damn undrinkable early on and even after extensive aging wasn't much of a stout. Meanwhile, the same recipe minus the candi sugar has produced very pleasant results. I have however used special b in very, very excellent stouts in the past and found it gives the flavour I normally look to candi syrup for in this situation without being so damn in your face and overbearing. Just a little easier to control I guess; much easier to get a subtle result with. Might just be a result of my candi syrup, but I'd still advise you to err on the side of caution.

I'd either limit the candi sugar to maybe two or three percent of the grain bill and drop the special b, or drop the candi sugar and leave the special b as is. Having both in there is redundant either way. I'd also personally massively increase the roasted barley and throw some oats in there instead of the wheat but that's just my personal taste.

csamson 09-19-2011 10:57 PM

I couldn't wait to brew it but I changed the recipe a little. I'm glad that I cut down the Candi sugar to half a pound now that you say that. The stuff I made was very dark and had a chocolate roasty flavor to it so I didn't want to go overboard on the roasted barley. I was debating on oats or wheat as well but have had some good results with wheat in the past. Depending on how this turns out I may sub them in the future.

How was yours undrinkable? Too sweet? Were you controlling your fermentation temps? I hear that is key when using sugar in beers because you don't get those the hot alcohol flavors.

I will post results in a few weeks with how it turned out. Nothing I can do now but wait and hope for the best!

Here's the final recipe that I went with:

Chocolate Coconut Belgian Stout

SG - 1.050
OG - 1.066

9# Bohemian Pilsner
2# Wheat Malt
.5# Dark Candi Syrup (homemade) - boil 30 min
.5# Chocolate Malt
.5# Pale Chocolate Malt
.5# Special B
.25# Roasted Barley
1oz Kent Golding 90min 3.9%
1oz Hallertau 60min 4.9%
1oz Kent Goldings 30min 3.9%

8oz Cocoa Powder 15min
.5 tsp wyeast yeast nutrient 15min
1 wirfloc tablet 15min

1# Toasted Shredded Coconut (In keg for 2 weeks or till correct taste)

Wyeast 3787 (Yeast Cake)

Mash @ 154F for 90 min

Ferment @ 68F until fermentation slows then let rise to 70F

Crustovsky 09-20-2011 05:27 AM

The issue was too big of a dark dried fruit flavour (especially dark cherries) and an initial borderline acrid tartness that was unpleasant when mixed with the roasty stout elements. With age the edge from the sugar fades away but the beer was still desperately lacking balance and a bit too far on the sweet side (although that could be fixed with more bittering hops). More a weak, black dubbel with an odd vaguely roasty off taste than a stout with nice subtle fruity and spicy notes which is what I look for in a Belgian stout. Again, this could all be an issue unique to my candi sugar (it doesn't really fit the description in the linked thread, probably as a result of water chemistry), or I might have just plain botched that batch of syrup (although I recall it tasting fine before being added) but still. I find special b just that much easier to balance for both flavour and body in a stout even if it isn't the most authentic Belgian ingredient or whatever. Hell, both the special b and candi sugar might be redundant in the first place, as I find you can get nice distinctly Belgian results just relying on the yeast alone.

As a note on controlling fermentation temps: I find it isn't a matter of there being sugar or not, it's just with all Belgian yeasts period. For the first 24 hours keep it as close to 18C (64F) as possible (it can get a couple degrees hotter, no big deal) but after that initial day ramp up the heat; in this case probably aim for 24C (75F). Never had an issue with fusel alcohols or overly medicinal flavours with this approach.

csamson 09-21-2011 01:52 PM

Well you have me a little worried now. I made my own candi sugar as well. I didn't follow a specific temperature schedule, I just added water when I felt that it was getting too hot. It turned out a little more dark and roasty than I had planned. But since it was so dark I thought it would work well with a belgian stout. I'm extra anxious to see how it turned out now. Either way I guess I will still end up with beer.

Any way that you could send me your good/bad recipe so I can compare?

Crustovsky 09-26-2011 08:28 PM

Eh, I'm sure it'll be fine. It might require some extra aging, but it should be drinkable. Might not be your favourite beer ever but hey, that's the joy of these experiments. I'll throw up the recipe for my last couple stouts, although I'm not sure it's going to be overly helpful. Base recipe is more or less this (yes, it was vaguely inspired by Bradul's "Best Laid Plans" found here http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f68/best-laid-plans-oatmeal-stout-56876/):

3.1kg Munich Malt
0.4kg Flaked Oats
0.4kg Roasted Barley
0.2kg White Wheat Malt
0.15kg Chocolate Malt

hopped to about 40ibus with whatever I have on hand (no important flavour contributions the last couple rounds) and then using wyeast 3522. The unpleasant recipe had 0.22kg of dark candi syrup, the excellent recipe accidentally had 0.4kg of flaked barley thrown in it. Future incarnations will include maybe 0.15kg of Special B, and have more Chocolate Malt, and Flaked Oats.

Johnnyhitch1 05-01-2012 10:45 PM

wow really interested on how this came out? huge belgium fan

csamson 05-02-2012 06:42 PM

It turned out really good. Didn't win the competition but the crowd really enjoyed it. The coconut cut down on the head retention a lot though. Since then, I've heard of baking the coconut on some sort of paper to extract as many oils as possible but haven't used coconut since. I will definitely try next time since that was the only noticeable flaw in the beer.

I would also cut out the roasted barley next time and maybe a little of each chocolate malt. The roasty malts didn't let the chocolate and belgian yeast shine through as much as I would have liked.

Let me know it you try it and what changes you made if any.

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