First brew need advice

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I am going to be brewing my first batch with my brother on Christmas and I am trying to make a Holiday brown porter. I have read many forums on the process and equipment needed. My question is: are the spices at the end of the boil going to over power each other or the flavor of the porter?

6.6 lbs Muntons Light LME
1 lb Caramel/Crystal Malt 80L
8 oz US Chocolate Malt
8 oz Flaked Barley

60 min 1 oz East Kent Goldings
15 min 1/2 oz East Kent Goldings
15 min 1/2 oz Fuggles
1 min 1/2 oz East Kent Goldings

Wyeast British Ale (1098) 74%attenuation

Holiday spices (boil)
5 min 1/2 tsp Allspice
5 min 1/2 tsp Ground Ginger
5 min 1/2 tsp Ground Cloves
5 min 1 tsp Ground Cinnamon

If you have any advice on anything with this recipe please comment.

Thanks for looking!
 

bfinleyui

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I don't have any input, as I'm new too, just wanted to say Hawkeyes? As in Iowa? Go hawks! Iowa City by any chance?
 

ApothecaryBrewing

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I am betting that amount of spice in a 5 gallon batch will tend to overpower any malt and hop flavor profile you have built in the batch.

I recently brewed a Harpoon Winter Warmer clone that uses 1/8 tsp. nutmeg and 1/4 tsp. of cinnamon added at secondary. Even with this tiny addition at secondary there is a nice presence of spice in the beer.

Using a 1/2 tsp. of each and full tsp. of cinnamon at the end of the boil will probably lead to a very pronounced spice flavor. Maybe cut it back to 1/8 of the lesser and a 1/4 of cinnamon. You want it to be there but not to take over the flavors of the malts and hops. Cloves is a pretty intense spice so maybe a little less of that one and allspice as well.

Just my 2 cents. Best of luck.
 

JohnnyO

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It looks like a decent recipe to me. I'm sure someone will give better feedback though.

The reason why I'm replying is that, if you brew this on Christmas, you will not be drinking it until at least the first week in February. You may want to dial the spices back ever so slightly so you're not drinking a "winter" beer in the Spring. Ask me how I know this...

Last year I brewed a winter lager at the end of November. I did not start drinking it until late February. Did I mention I made 10 gallons of it? Yeah, I was drinking a winter lager in April. Wish I had cut down on the spices a bit so it was a little more mellow.
 

homebrewdad

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I won't comment on the recipe itself, but I will agree that your holiday ale won't be ready until the spring. You may prefer to brew a more "normal" beer for the first try... and honestly, that won't be a bad thing, as you will learn more about the process without the spices masking what you are doing.

My two cents.
 

bdh

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Spice tends to go a long way in beer. If you want to be extra safe about not making something overpowering you can add a small amount of the spices during the boil (the 1/8 and 1/4tsp suggested above should be good), then you can try a sample when you're getting ready to bottle. If it's not as spicy as you want you could boil some more spices along with the priming sugar when you bottle. Alternatively you can add more spices during late primary/secondary fermentation by soaking them in some cheap vodka.
 

Jayhem

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I won't comment on the recipe itself, but I will agree that your holiday ale won't be ready until the spring. You may prefer to brew a more "normal" beer for the first try... and honestly, that won't be a bad thing, as you will learn more about the process without the spices masking what you are doing.

My two cents.

I agree with this.

Spices and crazy recipe experiments are best left till after you have mastered the process of brewing and recipe selection.

If I were you I would do a recipe from a known source and concentrate on process to produce a drinkable beer.

If you elect to keep it a spiced beer I would definitely go lighter on the spice. Better to have not enough spice than too much spice!
 

bfinleyui

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Not in Iowa city but was there many saturdays this fall. :)
Ouch, sorry to hear that. :-/

Hope the tailgating was at least fun. We were dreadful this year, i even left a game before it was over for the first time ever (Penn State)
 

cullen

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Every year I make a batch of beer with 1 oz of fresh ginger and several sticks of cinnamon (among other ingredients) and it doesn't overpower the beer. You may well be OK.
 
OP
H
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It looks like a decent recipe to me. I'm sure someone will give better feedback though.

The reason why I'm replying is that, if you brew this on Christmas, you will not be drinking it until at least the first week in February. You may want to dial the spices back ever so slightly so you're not drinking a "winter" beer in the Spring. Ask me how I know this...

Last year I brewed a winter lager at the end of November. I did not start drinking it until late February. Did I mention I made 10 gallons of it? Yeah, I was drinking a winter lager in April. Wish I had cut down on the spices a bit so it was a little more mellow.
I understand that I will not be drinking the beer for a few months. Christmas is the next time my brother and I will be able to brew together. And trust me I wish holiday beers where made all year long! I stock up on Sams WL and Bells Holiday. Great stuff!
 
OP
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I agree with this.

Spices and crazy recipe experiments are best left till after you have mastered the process of brewing and recipe selection.

If I were you I would do a recipe from a known source and concentrate on process to produce a drinkable beer.

If you elect to keep it a spiced beer I would definitely go lighter on the spice. Better to have not enough spice than too much spice!
Definatly agree
 
OP
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Updated recipe:

6 lbs Muntons Extra Light DME
1 lb Caramel/Crystal Malt 80L
8 oz US Chocolate Malt
8 oz Flaked Barley
6 oz Carafa 1

60 min 1 oz East Kent Goldings
15 min 1/2 oz East Kent Goldings
15 min 1/2 oz Fuggles
1 min 1/2 oz East Kent Goldings

Wyeast British Ale (1098) 74%attenuation

Holiday spices (boil)
5 min 1/2 tsp Allspice
5 min 1/2 tsp Ground Ginger
5 min 1/2 tsp Ground Cloves
5 min 1 tsp Ground Cinnamon

I have been told by many people to stay away from LME for various reasons. I don't know why but I don't have a preference. I added Carafa 1 mainly for color but I have been told it has a great flavor as well.
 

masterfool101

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I have never had a problem with LME. In fact, i generally prefer it to dry. The only thing you need to worry about is freshness ... But if your buying from a reputable source it shouldn't be a problem.

Where are you getting the ingredients?
 
OP
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I have never had a problem with LME. In fact, i generally prefer it to dry. The only thing you need to worry about is freshness ... But if your buying from a reputable source it shouldn't be a problem.

Where are you getting the ingredients?
Local homebrew store. No idea how old it is, I can ask when they got it. How old would be to old?
 

masterfool101

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It depends on their storage method. If its stored properly, up to 6 months ... But if its older, it doesn't mean it's bad ... Just that its not as fresh. I actually used 1 yr old LME in an amber, and it turned out pretty decent ...
 
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