Originally Posted by Ernie Diamond
Can anyone help me come up with an all-grain recipe for JW Lees Manchester Star? Does anyone have one?
I am happy to do the legwork if anyone has a good reference guide.
What do we know about it?
It is an English porter dating from an 1884 notebook script, classified as between a Robust porter and a Baltic porter, rated at 7.30% ABV, brewed for limited release by Greengate Brewery, Middleton Junction, Manchester, U.K. in coordination with Brooklyn Brewery.
Reviewers rate it as having being deep-brown to black, and some reddish hues when pouring, moderately carbonated, heavy, with an off-white or brown frothy head, smells of chocolate, malt or baked muffin, and orangey candied fruit, molasses, or raisins. Tasting of licorice, it is not very sweet with a hint of tobacco on the end of the palate with a moderately dry, almost alcoholic finish. And, a faint hint of citrus hoppiness.
The grain bill for the period typically consisted of brown malt and/or amber malt. It may also consist of some crystal rye malt. I would imagine it would be mashed around 150F for a period longer than 60 minutes.
Perhaps the hint of tabacco is a result of the yeast, or perhaps more like the result of a very, very dark crystal malt. Maybe Crystal 140L is worth a try as this would provide the slight red hue. Dark, roasted grains will contribute the dry finish but I see no indications of the beer coming off as bitter.
The yeast department is helped out by the indication that it should finish dry. Right now is the time to grab a couple vials of WLP038 Manchester (Platinum strain)!
As far as hops go I would try Brewer's Gold and First Gold.
This provides us with a lot of good information even if one has never tasted it himself. I think I am going to try to work up a quick recipe just for kicks. I couldn't imagine what to use for yeast at this moment. Perhaps, it is similar to their "Brewer's Dark" cask ale.
The only things components that I don't have in inventory are the Brewer's Gold hops and the Crystal Rye malt. I just don't know if the crystal rye malt is period specific to an 1884 brewer's notebook.