Coffee Stout questions

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zachary80

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I'm brewing the NB Peace Coffee stout porter. As of today it's been in the primary (bucket) for two weeks. Somewhere around this time I am supposed to be moving it to secondary, waiting two weeks, then adding the coffee and bottling a week later. The kit included a 4oz blend of coffee and tells me to grind it coarsely and add it to secondary. I have a better bottle 5gallon to use as secondary.

Should I follow these instructions? If so, how do I ensure that the ground coffee is sanitized and won't infect my beer? Should I grind the coffee and soak it in vodka? And what do you think about the timeline?

Primary Two Weeks (I'm at the end of this)
Secondary Two Weeks
Add Coffee
Continue in Secondary 1 Week
Bottle

Thanks again,
Zach
 

Hang Glider

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The alcohol present in the beer should likely prevent any infection - of course, keep everything sanitized anyway - but just grind the coffee coarsely and go for it. Mine turned out very nice.

thanks...I think I need to go make more.
I threw my grounds into the pot at flameout for a 20 minute soak in that 212F bath -
the oils driven out of the beans did seem to minimize head retention, but I'm not looking for a big head in a coffee porter...
 

JLem

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I see no reason to move it to secondary and then wait two weeks and then add coffee. Let it sit in primary until you are ready to add the coffee and then rack it to secondary and add the coffee at the same time.
 

Horseshoot

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I am planning a coffee porter. I roast my own coffees, and am a bit of a coffee snob. I sometimes cold brew coffee, which reduces the acids and the oils from the beans. I plan to cold brew mine in a sanitized container, with pre-boiled (and cooled) water, and then add this to secondary. I know this does not sanitize the actual beans, but I feel it will help with head retention.
 

Seven

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Should I follow these instructions? If so, how do I ensure that the ground coffee is sanitized and won't infect my beer? Should I grind the coffee and soak it in vodka? And what do you think about the timeline?
Interesting question. Not sure that you should soak the coffee in vodka since this will most likely strip the coffee flavors away. Maybe just ensure that your hands are clean and anything that touches the beans and coffee grinds are sanitized.

This sounds like a tasty recipe... let us know how it turns out!
 

Verio

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Interesting question. Not sure that you should soak the coffee in vodka since this will most likely strip the coffee flavors away. Maybe just ensure that your hands are clean and anything that touches the beans and coffee grinds are sanitized.

This sounds like a tasty recipe... let us know how it turns out!
I took the coffee grounds and put them in with 5 minutes left in the boil. Since you're already past that point, honestly, if you haven't been sticking your nose or hands into the grounds, you'll be ok.

One thing I've learned so far is that beer is much more resilient then some people make it out to be on here. I try to sanitize the best as possible, but ultimately, something always happens that requires me to do something drastic without sanitization. For example, this last brew, I had to stick my whole arm inside the bottling bucket to unplug a plugged spigot.

You'll be ok just racking onto it.

The instructions say to wait 2 weeks because you're not supposed to oversaturate the coffee taste in the Stout. Just make sure you're ready to bottle/keg right after the first week, or you negate the whole purpose of waiting two weeks.
 
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zachary80

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A lot of my uncertainty just comes from my unfamiliarity of coffee. I've drank plenty of coffee beers and enjoy them, but coffee itself isn't that enjoyable to me. I do make espresso sometimes, but that's preground and used for more of an energy boost than for the taste

Interesting question. Not sure that you should soak the coffee in vodka since this will most likely strip the coffee flavors away. Maybe just ensure that your hands are clean and anything that touches the beans and coffee grinds are sanitized.
The idea with the vodka would be to then throw both the few ounces of vodka and coffee into the secondary. I figured the ABV impact would be negligible and it might actually extract more or different flavors
 
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zachary80

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Alright sounds like I should be fine just coarsely grinding the coffee and adding it to secondary. I think I'll dump it on top after racking.

Am I looking at one or two weeks after adding it? I guess I could just sample.
 

Verio

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Alright sounds like I should be fine just coarsely grinding the coffee and adding it to secondary. I think I'll dump it on top after racking.

Am I looking at one or two weeks after adding it? I guess I could just sample.
I would toss it in first, then rack onto it.
 

Horseshoot

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dpittard: I use 2x the usual ratio of ground coffee to water. I allow it to sit in the fridge for at east 8 hours, but often longer. You end up with essentially a coffee extract. Naturally you have to filter the grounds. Sometimes I do it in my coffee press, to skip that step. I use the extract with hot water for a cup of coffee (to taste) or over ice with milk for iced coffee. Very smooth, low acid. It is especially nice for people who are bothered by acid in coffee. Mike
 

dpittard

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Thanks for the great info, Mike! This is going into my Hombrew folder (label) in Gmail!
 
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zachary80

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Well I'm going to bottle tomorrow after 7 days in secondary with the coffee. I have three questions:
Is there any trick to maximize beer and minimize coffee and trub while racking to the bottling bucket? Most of the beans are floating.

How can I mix the priming solution better? With my first beer, I boiled the sugar in water, put that in the bottling bucket, then racked from primary into the sugar solution. However, my carbonation is inconsistent and it's been over three weeks.

Should I be concerned that my airlock still bubbles occasionally? I think the gravity has been stable for at least a week. I didn't taste anything horrible while taking my last SG two days ago.
 

vitrael

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dpittard: I use 2x the usual ratio of ground coffee to water. I allow it to sit in the fridge for at east 8 hours, but often longer. You end up with essentially a coffee extract. Naturally you have to filter the grounds. Sometimes I do it in my coffee press, to skip that step. I use the extract with hot water for a cup of coffee (to taste) or over ice with milk for iced coffee. Very smooth, low acid. It is especially nice for people who are bothered by acid in coffee. Mike
I have a similar procedure. I use industrial coffee filters (can usually be picked up from your local coffee shop if you ask nicely) and pack it with twice as much as I would for drip coffee as well. I use the drip carafe to fill a serving pitcher so I know the exact amount of water, and grind the amount of coffee accordingly.

Then I just rubber band the giant coffee-teabag shut and put it in the pitcher and put the lid on that. I let it sit at room temp for 12-24 hours, giving the bag a dunk whenever I have the chance. It turns out GREAT, much smoother and more mellow but just as flavorful as drip coffee.

This is how I plan to add coffee to my coffee porter.
 
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zachary80

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Well I'm going to bottle tomorrow after 7 days in secondary with the coffee. I have three questions:
Is there any trick to maximize beer and minimize coffee and trub while racking to the bottling bucket? Most of the beans are floating.

How can I mix the priming solution better? With my first beer, I boiled the sugar in water, put that in the bottling bucket, then racked from primary into the sugar solution. However, my carbonation is inconsistent and it's been over three weeks.

Should I be concerned that my airlock still bubbles occasionally? I think the gravity has been stable for at least a week. I didn't taste anything horrible while taking my last SG two days ago.
Bottling in a couple hours. Can anyone help me out?
 

tedclev

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Yeah, boil up your priming sugar like usual. What I do when bottling is to get the siphon going and let the bottling bucket start filling up. Also, I let the end of my hose lie flat on the bottom so that as the beer is siphoned into the bucket it swirls into it gently without splashing around and oxidizing the beer. Once I have about a gallon in the bucket, I slowly and gently pour the sugar water down the side of the bucket as close to the beer as possible (again, to minimize adding oxygen). The swirling will mix the sugar water with the beer. Still, after it is finished, I take a long sterilized spoon and slowly/gently stir for about 30 seconds. Again- don't splash. This is my process, and it is always pretty consistent. Good luck.
 

tedclev

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Also, with coffee I have found that adding it to the boil is good because the grounds get filtered out, but I end up with too much acrid bitterness. Doing the cold brew is definitely the way to go. You get great coffee flavor without the acridness and you don't have to worry about coffee floating around in your fermenter. Plus, you can just add it at bottling/kegging time. Here are a couple links for cold brewing coffee... http://www.ineedcoffee.com/06/cold-brewed/
http://www.mahalo.com/how-to-cold-brew-coffee
 

davesrose

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I currently have a big coffee oatmeal imperial stout on tap now. Even when I was carbing it, I didn't have any coffee grounds with samples that I was pulling. I did the usual recommendation of racking to coarsly ground 3-4oz of dark roast coffee. While I let that condition, I did notice that most the fine grounds did settle out in the bottom, but some of the bigger bits were still floating. I just attached a nylon bag over the tip of my syphoning tube, and it did its job of keeping out whatever grounds were bein spit out. You do get a lot of the coffee flavoring with secondary: so I'd say the main element you have to consider is what type of coffee to use. I tried getting a nice dark blend that was robust.
 
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