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Espresso Stout Ale

Winter is when I try to brew some darker beers.  For whatever reason, most people don’t think they like “heavy” dark beers, so it takes me forever to get through a darker batch.  I decided to try my hand at an Espresso Stout, to see if the coffee flavor would entice some of my less enthusiastic drinkers to give it a whirl.  Long ago, I had added coffee to a kit that I’d made, and it turned a lame beer in to one that was pretty damn good.  Something I wanted to try on a beer that didn’t suck to begin with!

I used espresso beans instead of coffee beans, not that I really know the difference.  The beans were crushed a bit, then cold steeped for about a week in my fridge.  I added the espresso juice in to my secondary when I racked the batch over.

All-Grain Recipe: Espresso Stout

Ingredients:

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  • 10 lbs. – American 2-row
  • 1.25 lbs – Munich Malt
  • 5 oz. – Crystal Malt 45°L
  • 4 oz. – Roast Barley
  • 4 oz. – Pale Chocolate Malt
  • 4 oz. – Black Malt
  • 4 oz. – Brown Malt
  • 2 oz. Coffee Grounds

Hop Additions / Boil Additions:

  • .25 oz. – Magnum (14.5%) – added during boil, boiled 60 min
  • .5 oz. – Crystal (3.2%) – added during boil, boiled 30 min
  • 1 Whirlfloc Tablet & Wort Chiller – added during boil, boiled 10 min
  • 1 oz. – Crystal (3.2%)added end of boil, at flame-out

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Yeast:

  • Safale US-05

Additional Details / Notes

  • OG 1.056 / TG 1.010
  • 6.01% ABV | Color: 25 °SRM | ~18 IBU’s
  • Brewed 12/02/12, Secondary 12/30/12, Kegged 01/13/13
  • Mash Temp: ~153°, Thickness: 1.3 qt/g, Efficiency 66%, Attenuation 82%

Brewing the Espresso Stout

 

The Mash. espresso-stout-04Totally missed my goal of 151°, and mashed this about 153°.   Mashed in 4 gallons of water at 163° for a thickness of 1.3 qt/gal

The Boil.  Nothing special.  Started with about 6 gallons.  Added Whirlfloc and the Wort Chiller near the end of the boil.

Cooling. Used the wort chiller hooked up to indoor shop sink. Added 30-40 seconds of oxygen.

Fermenting.  Slow to start, but was rolling by the second day.  About 63° ambient temp.

espresso-stout-05Racking to Secondary & Bottling.  Added the liquid from about 2/3 cup of cold steeped espresso to the secondary.  Kegged the entire batch.

Drinking the Espresso Stout

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I know that the espresso is a cop out on an already easier style… but this one turned out really great.  Easily one of my bigger crowd pleasers, as well as one of my personal favorites.  The recipe was nearly perfect, if not the tiniest bit thin.  I would like to get a little more body and mouthfeel out of it next time, but there’s a chance that wouldn’t even be the right way to go.  I just felt like I wanted it a little bit “chewier”.  For sure a recipe I’ll come back to in the future.

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