Dark Lord Clone - help with recipe/technique

HomeBrewTalk.com - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Community.

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

barfdiggs

Member
Joined
Sep 11, 2011
Messages
13
Reaction score
1
Location
Pasadena
Your interpretation is correct. If you use a lot of the extract its worth getting it from Yakima Valley Hops, as its really fresh (and greenish), and smells great, while the stuff from NB is really dark and doesn't smell very great (oxidized and old?).
 

Indiana Red

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Feb 28, 2006
Messages
184
Reaction score
6
Location
Idaho, USA
Good tip.
I think it is a bit weird that on the YVH site they say the cans they sell are 100g
But then go on to describe the HopShots as IBUs/ml
About how many MLs are in one of their cans ?
Im guessing a couple grams/ML of that stuff. So 30-40 ?
Price would be roughly equivalent at aprox 4 syringes/can ?
 

dcp27

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 12, 2010
Messages
4,126
Reaction score
131
Location
Medford
Good tip.
I think it is a bit weird that on the YVH site they say the cans they sell are 100g
But then go on to describe the HopShots as IBUs/ml
About how many MLs are in one of their cans ?
Im guessing a couple grams/ML of that stuff. So 30-40 ?
Price would be roughly equivalent at aprox 4 syringes/can ?
a couple grams/ml is way too high of a density. its much closer to that of honey. I believe I got around 120ml from the 150g cans
 

barfdiggs

Member
Joined
Sep 11, 2011
Messages
13
Reaction score
1
Location
Pasadena
Ditto on the hop extract 100 g can for me. About 120-130 ml of extract from one can. I bought a bunch of syringes on Amazon (with screw caps) and made myself a baggie full of 5 ml and 10 ml hop extract syringes to use in DIPAs, other big hoppy beers and high ABV beers that don't need a prominent hop profile/aroma.
 

dcp27

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 12, 2010
Messages
4,126
Reaction score
131
Location
Medford
I assume you meant 100 g (not 150 g). If so, I also got ~120 ml from a 100 g can.
farmhouse has 150g ones so i was thinking of that one, but the last can may have been from yakima instead.
 

Indiana Red

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Feb 28, 2006
Messages
184
Reaction score
6
Location
Idaho, USA
Doing this one soon. I had to order the special oates and sugar but now I think I've got my "mise en place" and just need to pull the trigger. Maybe next weekend.
Brewing a light Blonde ale first and will probably use the yeast cake from that.
 

Sandstorm

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 14, 2014
Messages
147
Reaction score
17
Location
Boston
I am assuming brew day did not go as expected @indiana red? I am gathering the ingredients for this and will be brewing it on fathers day!
I feel 4 packages of yeast is overkill though so will be only using 2 packages in a 3L starter. I am also thinking about possibly using some oak cubes and bourbon for this.
 

Indiana Red

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Feb 28, 2006
Messages
184
Reaction score
6
Location
Idaho, USA
Had to push it back to this coming saturday 6/11 Actually making a couple batches of other stuff between now and then. Basic Brown ale right now actually.. and a Simcoe Pale ale on friday.
Agreed on the yeast... Im doing the 2 types of yeast but merely ramping up good starters for each.
And yes, I have a couple of pit mason jars full of toasted oak cubes that have been swimming in Makers Mark fir the last few months. They will definately make an appearance in this beer.
 

Indiana Red

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Feb 28, 2006
Messages
184
Reaction score
6
Location
Idaho, USA
DL Clone - Brewday
Undershot my mash temp. About 155 but that should still be OK
Also I decided to run off 7.5 G and lengthen the boil a bit to compensate as my pre boil grav was (only) 1054 Standard BoilOff rates should get this down to about 1120
Basically I am making LME :)
 

Sandstorm

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 14, 2014
Messages
147
Reaction score
17
Location
Boston
DL Clone - Brewday
Undershot my mash temp. About 155 but that should still be OK
Also I decided to run off 7.5 G and lengthen the boil a bit to compensate as my pre boil grav was (only) 1054 Standard BoilOff rates should get this down to about 1120
Basically I am making LME :)
Nice. What was your final gravity? How did your second mash go? Did you batch sparge the second mash?
What water profile did you use? What was your mash PH?

I am still trying to figure out how I can configure beer smith to calculate the two mashes correctly.

I wonder if it would make more sense to just use LME instead of boiling down the first mash. I think it gets some character from boiling for 4 hours that LME can't provide alone though.
 

Indiana Red

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Feb 28, 2006
Messages
184
Reaction score
6
Location
Idaho, USA
I didnt realize I had not save my latests notes in BeerSmth when my PC restarted. so lost some of my notes/updates
7.25G of aprox 1.06Mash 1 boiled for about 4 hrs got me to 3.25G @1.120
Second mash first runnings only(I didnt take gravity reaings of this separately) up to 7G
Boiled the combined mashes runnoffs for 90 min down to 5.5G
But I rememebr I was at 1.150 and 5.5G when I pitched at about 64F I hi tit with O2 for a minute or so and it sowly rose to 68F after about 12 hrs when it started showing some airlock activity.
Second mash was 1st runnings only and was at about 156F
I dont take PH readings
I couldnt figure out the BS readings of combining 2 mashes either.
 

pdm1982

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2013
Messages
164
Reaction score
21
Location
Fort Wayne
I'm looking to brew the BYO recipe in the next few weeks. Curious to know how anyone else's batch turned out. I'm not sure if its a bad sign that no one ever followed up with their results or not.
 

pdm1982

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2013
Messages
164
Reaction score
21
Location
Fort Wayne
Well, I brewed it. I ended up with 6 gallons at 1.170 into the fermenter. I was shooting for 5.5 gallons figuring I'd lose 0.5 gal to trub loss. The wort was so thick the trub never really settled out so I ended up with 6 gal into the fermenter.

So then I pitched the yeast. I woke up the next day and aerated it again. Then I went out of town for a few days. I came home to find that I basically made a bomb in my fermentation chamber.

I'll probably only end up netting 4 gallons total. Right now, I'm just hoping the yeast can ferment this thing all the way down.
 

Attachments

V-Fib

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 10, 2016
Messages
254
Reaction score
99
I'm 2 hours into the 4 hour boil for mash #1. I'm not really sure how this one is going to turn out but so far things are going well other than my mashing spoon disappearing. My Mash #1 gravity was 1.068 with 6.2 gallons in the kettle.

The thing that is worrying me is how the yeast is going to get up to 18%. Wyeast American Ale has been a work horse for me and normally reaches 90% attenuation but their London ESB has crapped out early 75% of the time. I did build 2 separate 2L starters for each strain using 200ml of harvest yeast for each. Hopefully it gets to 15% at least. I'm not sure what to do if it stops to soon.

Time will tell what we got. Tasting notes to follow in a year.
 

pdm1982

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2013
Messages
164
Reaction score
21
Location
Fort Wayne
My first mash's preboil numbers were 1.062 with 7.5 gal in the kettle. I boiled it down to 3.5 gal over 4 hours.
My second boil was 1.073 with 5 gal in the kettle. Since my gravity was lower than I wanted I boiled it by itself for an hour and ended up with 4 gal at 1.091 prior to blending.

The two blended boils were at 1.114 with 7.25 in the kettle prior to the 90 min boil.

I did 4 packs of WLP002 in a 4.85L starter the morning before. I had just enough time to get it cold crashed so that I could decant it. I'm also a little worried the yeast will crap out on me since this doesn't seem like the right yeast for the job. We'll see. I'll probably pull a gravity reading and raise fermenter to 70 in a few days.
 

V-Fib

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 10, 2016
Messages
254
Reaction score
99
So mine finished at 1.144 with 6.5 gallons. I thought about boiling down another 0.5-0.75 gallons but after 5.5 hours of boiling time in one day the though of adding more boil time wasn't going to fly today. I also ended up with some caramel on the bottom of my kettle from the jaggery. I'm guessing that was the by product of using a normal kitchen spoon since my brewing spoon has vanished. My guess is that my kids had something to do with it :smh:

The best way I could describe the taste of the sample is like taking a shot of molasses with no bitterness at all.

Time to pitch, wait and wait longer.
 
Last edited:

pdm1982

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2013
Messages
164
Reaction score
21
Location
Fort Wayne
I did a parti-gyle beer from the second runnings of the stout mash. I used the remaining 12 oz of jaggery on it because it was just sitting there. I got the DL up to a boil about 30 mins before I got the second beer up to a boil so I ended up with them finishing their boils within minutes of each other. Long story short: I had caramel pudding to scrub off of two boil kettle bottoms thanks to that jaggery. The DL used the hopshot so that caramel mixed with the hopshot oil leftovers was almost impossible to get off. It just smeared and was super sticky. I ended up cleaning them in my bathtub...

I want to say my total boil time was 6+ hours. I had to keep rotating my two propane tanks as one would freeze up every so often. I've never had to mess with that before.

I would agree with the shot of molasses flavor from my hydrometer tube except mine had plenty of bitterness from that hopshot.

Overall, it was an awesome experience and one hell of a day. If this beer turns out decent enough, I'd probably do it again.
 

V-Fib

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 10, 2016
Messages
254
Reaction score
99
Looks like its done at 1.050 so it will end up 12.3% ABV. Over all I'm pretty impressed with the yeast making it to 65% and pushing past the Wyeast ABV tolerance. That was also with no yeast nutrient or any oxygenation other then the good ol' shake till you can't method. The sample was better then I expected it would be. Not as hot as I'd expect a 12% beer to be this early but the vanilla flavor at this point is strong. Hopefully it fades to a background note.

I decided to go with the Black Cat espresso bean since it was available at Target. I went with 5 oz of the whole beans since it tastes fantastic when mixed with water so mixed in beer it should be 10x that.
 

pdm1982

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2013
Messages
164
Reaction score
21
Location
Fort Wayne
Interesting. Mine is still sitting at 1.080. It stopped initially at 1.090 and I repitched a 3L starter of WLP099 with yeast nutrients and 3 oz of sugar to get it back going. It only moved it 10 points. I just racked it to secondary in hopes to get a little oxygen pickup and I'm about to pitch another starter to see if I can get it moving again. With the higher mash temp of 158 I have some concerns that maybe it didn't fully convert and I have some starches. I'll refrain from adding amylase enzyme at this point though.

I suppose my WLP002 yeast attenuated about the same but since my OG was so much higher they left me hanging with a 12% beer that has a FG that's way too high. If I were to do this over again I think I'd use WLP090 initially, get an O2 bubbler, and aerate for more than just twice. Maybe the first 3-4 days.
 

V-Fib

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 10, 2016
Messages
254
Reaction score
99
About 1 month later and being on CO2 for the entire time I'm getting no carbonation. I'm guessing its from the higher than normal gravity of the beer. It tastes better than I expected and seems to be improving. The consistency is still odd for a beer but obviously this is no normal beer. If I do it again I'd half the jaggery, vanilla and keep the coffee beans at 2.5oz. It was definitely fun to brew and without ever having a real dark lord I have no idea how close the recipe is. I'd probably also skip the 4 hour boil for the 1st brew and figure out how to get the similar results from extract.
 

pdm1982

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2013
Messages
164
Reaction score
21
Location
Fort Wayne
Its been about 7 weeks from brew day and I'm still waiting for it to finish fermenting. It was at 1.070 yesterday and still showed signs that the yeasts are working. I added some more fresh yeast to help it along. I'm hoping to get it down another 10 or 15 points. The samples I've been pulling taste pretty good even though its so young. Its definitely similar to Dark Lord but its got a long way to go.

I did a BCBS clone a while back and I also had trouble getting it to terminal gravity. I ended up kegging it when it was at 1.036. It took over a week at 30 psi to get it to show any signs of carbonation. From what I could find to read, it sounds like the higher the FG the longer it takes to carbonate. Something to do with the density of the liquid and forcing the CO2 into it. I'll try to find a link to what I read. Based on that, I think it make sense that this one will take a lot longer to carbonate. I'd just give it as long as it needs.
 

pdm1982

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2013
Messages
164
Reaction score
21
Location
Fort Wayne
Just transferred to a fresh carboy with oak cubes that were soaked in bourbon. Gravity was at 1.056.
 

V-Fib

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 10, 2016
Messages
254
Reaction score
99
Funny thing happened today. I pulled a sample and it was still flat and barely flowing. Checked my connections and had my CO2 line #1 hooked up to keg #3. I normally have the numbers matching so since I've had this legged is has only has only been the initial 30 PSI of gas to seal the keg.
 

pdm1982

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2013
Messages
164
Reaction score
21
Location
Fort Wayne
That sucks. You've had that hooked up for a while too. At least you realized it wasn't taking the CO2. Guess you'll just be waiting like me. I'm planning to hold off on kegging mine until February or March but I may get impatient. We'll see.
 

pdm1982

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2013
Messages
164
Reaction score
21
Location
Fort Wayne
Its been a year and I just now recently kegged this thing. After a week at 30 psi it's now fully carbed and drinking good. Based on my memory it's very reminiscent of Dark Lord but I'll have to do a real side-by-side for a more accurate comparison.

I'm already planning to brew this again.
IMG_30191.jpg
IMG_30201.jpg
 

pdm1982

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2013
Messages
164
Reaction score
21
Location
Fort Wayne
I'm thinking about maybe entering this beer into comps. Anyone have any insight as to what category this would fit into? On paper it would look like spice/herb/vegetable with the coffee and vanilla but I don't think it comes through enough to justify it. I even aged mine on oak cubes for several months but I can't even taste them, so I'd rule out specialty oak too. I'm leaning towards alternative sugar beer (31B) with a base style of Imperial Stout. Another style that came to mind is clone beer (34A). I figured since the real Dark Lord is pretty unique it may not easily fit into a category either. I'm a little leery going that route though, in case a judge doesn't share my opinion. Thoughts?
 

V-Fib

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 10, 2016
Messages
254
Reaction score
99
Mine turned out better than I expected. A tad to sweet, I tried adding champagne yeast to it to see what would happen in the keg before bottling it (it did nothing for carbonation or to knock down the sugar left in it).

Its way smoother than I though it would be. Its definitely a good recipe. If I make it again I'd drop down the jaggery to 1.5 lbs and go from there.
 

pdm1982

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2013
Messages
164
Reaction score
21
Location
Fort Wayne
I just rebrewed this last Sunday. Overall a pretty solid brew day but in the final 90 minute boil I must not have boiled hard enough. Ended up with about 6.3 gal at 1.162 OG. I checked the SG on Wednesday and it was down to 1.102. Fermentation has slowed but it still shows signs that the yeast is working. I ended up swapping out the English Ale yeast for the San Diego Super Yeast. Other than that, it was pretty much the same as last year's batch.
 

pdm1982

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2013
Messages
164
Reaction score
21
Location
Fort Wayne
It's been about a year so I might as well throw an update on here. The keg of the 2018 batch blew back in February and the 2019 batch is still sitting in a Journeyman bourbon barrel. It's been in the barrel since January. A few weeks ago I decided to brew a scaled back version of the recipe and do everything in a single mash. It was a much easier brew day. The OG on that beer was 1.102 and its still fermenting. It's probably worth noting that even though it's about 60-70 gravity points lower than the actual recipe it's still very explosive in the fermenter.
2020 DL Aftermath 1.jpg 2020 DL Aftermath 2.jpg 2020 DL Aftermath 3.jpg 2020 DL Aftermath 4.jpg
 
Joined
Apr 10, 2018
Messages
15
Reaction score
26
It's been about a year so I might as well throw an update on here. The keg of the 2018 batch blew back in February and the 2019 batch is still sitting in a Journeyman bourbon barrel. It's been in the barrel since January. A few weeks ago I decided to brew a scaled back version of the recipe and do everything in a single mash. It was a much easier brew day. The OG on that beer was 1.102 and its still fermenting. It's probably worth noting that even though it's about 60-70 gravity points lower than the actual recipe it's still very explosive in the fermenter.
View attachment 674483 View attachment 674484 View attachment 674485 View attachment 674486
Any update on the scaled down single mash version compared to the original recipe?
 

pdm1982

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2013
Messages
164
Reaction score
21
Location
Fort Wayne
I hate to say it, but I think I'm going to end up dumping that batch. Or use it as a marinade. I'm not sure if it was a fermentation issue, or a recipe scale issue, but even though the numbers made sense on paper, the end result was far sweeter than the full recipe. It is undrinkable. I suspect the jaggery needed to be cut back more than what I did. Whatever the case, it did not work out and I don't recommend doing it the way I did.

I've brewed the double mash version 3 times, and so far every one of those have turned out great.... they just take a lot of work to get them to ferment out. Batch 1 sat several months before going on tap. Batch 2 sat for about a year before I got a Journeyman barrel and then it sat several months in that. Batch 3 is in that same barrel and is currently a little over 8 months old. So far Batch 2 appears to be the best.

If I were to brew this again, I'd make some simple changes. I'd lower my mash temps, like around 150-152ish. I think there will be tons of body in a beer this big regardless of mash temp. I think the 159 mash temp can cause some issues with fermentability of the wort. I'd aim lower. Also, the recipe calls for an OG of 1.169 or something like that. On Batch 3 I missed high. How high? No clue because my hydrometer tops out at 1.170. By eyeballing it I'd say I was over 1.180. I stopped throwing yeast at it after months and it finished at 1.070. Moral of the story: if you're going to miss on the OG, miss low. 1.150-1.160 will cooperate with you more than 1.170+ will. It's no coincidence that Batch 2's OG was 1.162 and it fermented down a lot farther than the other two batches (FG 1.056). Something to think about. I've been using WLP090 to ferment, and WLP099 to finish it.
 
Last edited:
Top