I'm planning my next brew and am aiming for a hefty winter-warmer recipe which was originally based on a Hobgoblin recipe.
I'm planning on the following:
Pale 2 row 89%
Crystal 55L (dark) 5%
Cara-pils Dextrine Malt 4%
Chocolate Malt (dark) 3%
I am looking for around 1.076 OG and will hop with roughly equal portions of Target/Northdown/Challenger.
Now, my options for yeast (based on what I have ready to go at the moment) are S04 or Wyeast 1968. Which of these should I go with?
I should add at this stage that I have only 3-4 brews under my belt.
I have used S04 a couple of times successfully.
I only used Wyeast 1968 for the first time in my last brew so I don't yet know if I trust it [begin sub-story!]. I used it in a London Pride recipe 5 weeks ago. After 1 week in primary it had fermented about half way down from 1.045 and the sample tasted really good - really forward malt flavours. I roused it and left it in primary for 4.5 weeks then bottled last night. However, at bottling it only made it down to 1.022 and the lovely malt flavours have been replaced by a more nail-varnishy smell. I'm fairly sure it isn't infected and the flavours will change as it conditions, however, the poor attenuation makes me worried about using the yeast for a higher gravity beer? Or perhaps my extreme temperature loss during mash just meant I had a higher % of unfermentables and the yeast did it's job fine?
Anyway, I guess my questions are:
1) In ideal brewing conditions, which yeast would be better for this beer (what would be the likely differences in flavour)?
2) Does using Wyeast 1968 represent a more risky option given my very new and unrefined techniques of brewing?!