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Old 09-14-2011, 10:22 PM   #11
Sep 2010
northern vermont
Posts: 32
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

One further thought on hop intensity.

I model hops at 4% alpha acids/ounce but for the initial boil hops I do use higher alpha hops to reduce hop content of the brew (1 oz Warrior = 4 oz kent goldings for example)

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Old 09-24-2013, 03:57 AM   #12
Jul 2011
Tulsa, Ok
Posts: 31

Originally Posted by hampshirebrewer View Post
1/4 lb (4 oz) licorice root sounds like a lot. 1-2 oz should be plenty but the sweetness of the licorice root could offset the bitterness of the essentia bina

The linseed part sounds grim. I wonder if this is one of those adulterated porters that led to laws banning such stuff from beer (I've also wondered if this kind of recipe inspired Papazian's musings on the tumultuous porter recipe)
I'm finally brewing this tomorrow!!! I found the recipe and printed it off again, and noticed that it's not 1/4lb (4oz) of Licorice root, it's 1/4oz. So... heres how it's gonna go down:

I'm brewing 3gallons (half of the recipe). I'm mashing
5.5lbs Maris Otter
Making "Colour" in the boil kettle with dark brown sugar
and running wort into it.
adding .5oz EKG, .5 Fuggles (Leaf) as a FWH
1/8oz Licorice Root
1.5oz Grated Ginger
1/4oz "Capsicum" (Cayenne Pepper)
2oz or more essentia bina

.5oz EKG & Fuggles
Wyeast 1028 London Ale

Thinking about Oak in the secondary?
And thinking about toasted oats, and wheat malt, and thinking that if the color isnt right, i have some roasted barley and patent around.

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Old 09-24-2013, 07:15 PM   #13
Bob's Avatar
Nov 2007
Christiansted, St Croix, USVI, US Virgin Islands
Posts: 3,927
Liked 142 Times on 105 Posts

We've been down this sort of road on a couple of different occasions here on HBT. Here are some links which you may find interesting:


Some important things to note:

Porter in the late C18 was a "stock" ale, meaning it was left to mature for quite a while in the wood. That imparts a distinctive flavor profile; ask anyone who's brewed with Brettanomyces. The spices and other additions not hops, malt, and sugar are, in my opinion as a brewing historian, meant to mimic the flavor of "stock" porter in a beer which can be consumed without expensive aging. There is another school of thought, that they are to adjust brewing liquor. At any rate, many of the spices and chemicals are dangerous, because some are poisonous. Best to avoid them.

"Essentia bina" is essentially molasses. You can make your own, as you've found here on HBT, but it's a PITA for something which to my palate anyway differs so subtly from regular ol' molasses. When I do this I use molasses and call it a day. Treacle, however, is a distinctive thing with a distinctive flavor. I'd not substitute anything else for it.

Keep in mind 4 ounces of hops, or 1/4 pound, is not that much for six gallons, especially operating under the assumption that 1790s hops were low alpha and didn't keep well. It's safe to conclude that by the time hops made it from hop yard to kettle, the AA % was quite low. Don't be afraid to use the stated hops schedule; just use low (sub 5%) AA hops.

You can make "colour" by running wort into the kettle and boiling it down. This is a common historical method.

The color won't be "right", at least as you expect modern Porter to resemble. See the above-referenced threads. Don't futz with it; keep it as true as possible to the original recipe and take a trip back in time.

Good luck, and welcome to the historical brewing obsession!

Fort Christian Brewpub
St Croix, US Virgin Islands

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Old 09-24-2013, 10:56 PM   #14
Aug 2008
, New York
Posts: 1,565
Liked 132 Times on 82 Posts

Two things. First, given that this is a porter recipe from the late 18th C, the malt they used would have been a diastatic brown malt. That is, a lightly roasted malt (kilned over straw/fern/wood) that would be used for 100% (or so) of the grist and would produce a sufficiently black colored beer. Given that this recipe is for a home-brew type of beer, maybe they wouldn't have used brown malt, but the commercial brewers certainly did.

Here is a look at making a period, diastatic brown malt.


Also, from my experiences tasting and making essentia bina, the flavor is quite a bit different than molasses. Mainly in that it has a bitter-chocolate-burnt flavor from setting the sugar aflame.

Good luck with the brew.

Bob Likes This 
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Old 09-25-2013, 01:51 AM   #15
Sep 2010
northern vermont
Posts: 32
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts


I hope your brew went well today. I found a recipe for 1909 oat malt stout that includes linseed (surprised me anyway) that includes the tip that it's flaxseed. And my doctor tells me to consume more flaxseed. So I shall later this fall.


I've done a few of these recipes and they are quite good.

A handy recipe finder for lets brew wednesday is here:

Recently Bottled: Amarillo pale ale, oat malt stout, citra American pilsner
Bubbling: Pliny clone, Catamount porter
On Deck: Calcutta IPA, American hoppy light

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