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General Category => General Homebrew Discussion => Topic started by: bluesman on January 10, 2014, 05:44:14 PM

Title: Adding java to a stout
Post by: bluesman on January 10, 2014, 05:44:14 PM
I just brewed an Oatmeal stout and plan to add some fresh Kona coffee to the beer. This comes up from time to time, but I thought it would fun to discuss specific tips, techniques or secrets for adding coffee to beer.

What's your method of adding coffee to get the best Java stout?

Cold steep
fresh brewed
expresso
???
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: Pinski on January 10, 2014, 05:52:55 PM
Cold steep. My little brother is as much a coffee dork as I am a beer dork and he insisted that cold steeping makes the smoothest joe with best extraction.  I'm very pleased with the result.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: HoosierBrew on January 10, 2014, 05:54:53 PM
I add cracked coffee beans to a nylon bag and add them to secondary, until the coffee flavor is where I want and then pull it.  I've done the same thing @ kegging and liked the results too - it's a cold steep , except in beer.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: gman23 on January 10, 2014, 05:56:40 PM
How much coffee for a 5 gallon batch?
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: HoosierBrew on January 10, 2014, 06:01:07 PM
I use a pound, pulling it when it steeps out the right amount of flavor.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: beersk on January 10, 2014, 07:09:02 PM
I cold brew mine in a 16oz French press for 24 hours then add it to the keg before racking the beer in. I like the results.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: tlunneberg on January 10, 2014, 07:43:07 PM
I recently did a coffee stout and put 4oz. of coarse ground dark roast in at flameout until transfer. I think I would go with 3 oz. next time as the coffee flavor is still overpowering at 2 months aged. One thing I like with this method as opposed to cold steeping is you get some of the bite of the coffee, almost a spiciness. I'm sure both methods can work well.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: Stevie on January 10, 2014, 07:53:43 PM
I cold brew a half pound of coffee in a big French press then pour through a pour over filter to get all the bits. I posted the whole process not long ago. Can't remember the thread.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: kylekohlmorgen on January 10, 2014, 08:15:45 PM
Cold steep overnight with bottled spring water.

I use a blend of beans from the local coffee shop or high-end market.

I don't remember the weight / volume I used last time, but it was much stronger than your average cold-steeped coffee recipe.

Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: dls5492 on January 10, 2014, 08:27:35 PM
I add coffee to the secondary. Usually I put one oz. of beer in a glass and add 1/16 oz of coffee. From there, I experiment with different amounts of coffee until I get the taste I like. If it is a 5 gallon batch of beer, then 5 gal = 640 oz. If 1/16 oz coffee in 1 oz of beer works. Then you would add 640/16=40 oz of coffee or 0.3 gallons.  (1 gallon = 128 oz.) I hope the math isn't confusing.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: Joe Sr. on January 10, 2014, 09:03:01 PM
I add cracked coffee beans to a nylon bag and add them to secondary, until the coffee flavor is where I want and then pull it.  I've done the same thing @ kegging and liked the results too - it's a cold steep , except in beer.

I've gotten the best coffee flavor this way.  I think I used about 3 oz. for 2.5 gallons.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: beersk on January 10, 2014, 09:50:18 PM
I wonder if that'd be the best way to do it, like dry hopping in the keg. Instead dry coffee bean in the keg.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: Joe Sr. on January 10, 2014, 10:01:53 PM
Apparently, my reading comprehension is poor today.

I've done it "dry-beaned" in the keg.  Not in the secondary.

I hang the bag of coarse cracked beans from a length of floss and close the lid with the floss sticking out.

I take a sample every so often and pull the beans when I like the flavor.  I've also done it with espresso into the keg, but the coarse cracked beans gave a smoooother flavor.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: HoosierBrew on January 10, 2014, 11:00:47 PM
I wonder
I wonder if that'd be the best way to do it, like dry hopping in the keg. Instead dry coffee bean in the keg.

I wonder if that'd be the best way to do it, like dry hopping in the keg. Instead dry coffee bean in the keg.
if that'd be the best way to do it, like dry hopping in the keg. Instead dry coffee bean in the keg.

+1 to "dry beaning" .   Everybody that swears by cold steeping - I've done it and liked it. Just try cold steeping in YOUR BEER in the kegerator. There's a reason vanilla beans are often soaked in alcohol. I feel the alcohol similarly extracts aromas and flavors that don't get extracted by regular cold steeping. Aside from that, all the flavor and aroma from the beans is trapped in your beer.  +1 Joe Sr   ;)
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: ultravista on January 11, 2014, 02:38:42 PM
I recently brewed an imperial porter, adding about 8.5 ounces of course ground coffee in the keg post fermentation, it sat refrigerated for about 7 days. To my taste, the coffee is over powering. Perhaps it will mellow over time but that may be wishful thinking.

I'm not sure if it was too much coffee or if it was steeped too long.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: Jimmy K on January 11, 2014, 02:49:00 PM
I am going to try whole beans in the ferment after fermentation. MadFermentationist said it gave him the most persistent flavor. Interesting fact, you get no color from the beans if they are whole.

- Sent by my R2 unit

Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: HoosierBrew on January 11, 2014, 03:01:38 PM
Interesting fact, you get no color from the beans if they are whole.

- Sent by my R2 unit



Never knew that. Pretty cool.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: ynotbrusum on January 11, 2014, 08:00:36 PM
Cold steep, usually, but occasionally at the end of the mash.  Just like darkest grains - when I remember to do it the day before I cold steep.  When I get busy, then it's a late mash add.  I like the idea of trying whole beans in the secondary - I will have to try that one!
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: HoosierBrew on January 11, 2014, 09:32:54 PM
  I like the idea of trying whole beans in the secondary - I will have to try that one!


Actually, I crack the beans up pretty good - sort of the consistency right in between whole beans and coarse ground coffee. Works great !
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: Jimmy K on January 12, 2014, 12:35:06 AM
Maybe I'm overly concerned, but cold-steeped coffee seems like a great source of oxidation.
I had a coffee mead at NHC last year which had great coffee flavor and was clear, pale gold like normal mead. It was aged on whole coffee beans.
I was also thwarted once making a Kaluah clone by soaking whole beans in liquor. It stayed clear which wasn't what I wanted.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: Stevie on January 12, 2014, 04:49:20 PM

Maybe I'm overly concerned, but cold-steeped coffee seems like a great source of oxidation.

I've never had a problem with oxidation. Maybe it has something to do with the antioxidants found in coffee.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: BrewingRover on January 12, 2014, 05:02:01 PM
Another vote for whole beans in the secondary. I haven't tried other methods as I've really liked how my beers have come out using this one.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: DrewG on January 16, 2014, 03:56:27 PM
I cold steep in a big mason jar. Two hopsacks, water to cover for 24 hours. 3 oz for noticable flavor, 4 if I want the beer to be "coffee forward". Kona is a great coffee for this method.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: Stevie on January 16, 2014, 04:00:52 PM

I cold steep in a big mason jar. Two hopsacks, water to cover for 24 hours. 3 oz for noticable flavor, 4 if I want the beer to be "coffee forward". Kona is a great coffee for this method.

I might need to try hop sacks next times. Thanks for the idea.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: bluesman on January 16, 2014, 05:52:04 PM
I just bought some Kona medium roast. I plan to add  4oz fresh ground to the keg prior to kegging and let it steep at cellar temp for 7 days. I like the whole bean idea too.

Thanks for all of the ideas and suggestions. Keep the suggestions/discussion coming! :)
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: brick pig on January 16, 2014, 06:57:13 PM
For a 5-gallon batch of my coffee stout, I brew 5 cups of coffee just like I brew every morning (which is pretty strong by most peoples' standards) and let it cool to room temp. Then pour it into the secondary and rack the stout into it. I easily brew this recipe more often than any other recipe in my aresnal, and it has been perfect every time.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: phytenphyre on February 24, 2014, 03:06:02 PM
I am making a Breakfast Stout clone from Founders and it calls for coffee in the boil and at bottling.  I cold steeped about 4 oz's for 3 days.  I didn't think about tasting it before dropping it into my boil, maybe next time.  I also have to add more coffee when I bottle.  I will also be cold steeping these.  Any thoughts on possible infection or is there enough alcohol to thwart that potential problem?  Any success or failures you have encountered?

Thanks,
Kyle
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: Stevie on February 24, 2014, 03:33:16 PM
I have never experienced an infection from post fermentation coffee additions. I sanitize all the equipment I can and add it right in.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: HoosierBrew on February 24, 2014, 03:40:14 PM
+1.  Same here.  I add crushed beans to secondary (or keg) in a nylon bag and pull them when the flavor is where I want. Never had an infection.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: krebsy on February 25, 2014, 02:28:40 PM
I am making a Breakfast Stout clone from Founders and it calls for coffee in the boil and at bottling.  I cold steeped about 4 oz's for 3 days.  I didn't think about tasting it before dropping it into my boil, maybe next time.  I also have to add more coffee when I bottle.  I will also be cold steeping these.  Any thoughts on possible infection or is there enough alcohol to thwart that potential problem?  Any success or failures you have encountered?

Thanks,
Kyle

  I brewed the Breakfast Stout recipe from BYO awhile back and I steeped the prescribed amount of coffee (2oz?) in a hop bag in the kettle after flame out for about 4 minutes, just like I would if making coffee in a coffee press.  There is additional coffee called for to be steeped post fermentation.  I did this as well, and the overall coffee character was prominent, but pleasant.  I did not have infection issues.  This is also the reason I encourage people to not be afraid of steeping a portion of the coffee in the hot wort post boil.  Done right, it won't be a harsh, acidic mess.

  As an aside, does anyone else think coffee beers sometimes taste more like green bell peppers than coffee?
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: Jimmy K on February 25, 2014, 02:36:54 PM
  As an aside, does anyone else think coffee beers sometimes taste more like green bell peppers than coffee?
I hope you're not saying your coffee beer tastes like green bell peppers, because that would contradict your first statement that hot steeped coffee is fine.
 
I haven't thought of green peppers from any coffee beer I've had.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: Stevie on February 25, 2014, 02:42:00 PM
When I worked at a coffee shop in college, we had a few varieties that had hints of bell pepper. I think it was the African and Indonesian beans. I would try a different bean. 
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: krebsy on February 25, 2014, 03:20:02 PM
I did not notice the bell pepper character in the beer I made, but I have noticed it in some others that I know were made with beans steeped in the beer post fermentation.  My suspicion is that it is certain beans or roast levels, or just how my senses interpret it sometimes.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: Jimmy K on February 25, 2014, 03:30:22 PM
Hmm, that's interesting.
 
Also, how do you chill? I would think that throwing beans in at flameout would be fine if you can cool quickly. Not so good if the wort will be hot for an extended time.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: HoosierBrew on February 25, 2014, 03:32:34 PM
One of my favorite coffees to use is Sumatra, obviously from Indonesia. I've never picked up on the bell pepper thing. Maybe the differences in each roaster.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: mabrungard on February 25, 2014, 04:48:18 PM
One of my clubmates, Sandy Cockerham, is a BJCP Master and owner of a local coffee shop. She also supplies the coffee to many of the Indy breweries and guides their practices. Cold beer steeping seems to be the direction she espouses.

In a recent brewery's rendition of a coffee beer, there was definite bell/hot pepper notes. I seem to recall they used a Guatemalan bean. Of course Sandy roasted the beans, but I don't remember how dark. I also recall a presentation she gave to our BJCP judge pool in which she worked with SunKing and their Cream Ale and infused some lightly roasted (Ethiopian?) coffee and the result was surprisingly refreshing and light.   
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: chezteth on February 25, 2014, 05:23:17 PM
I have picked up green bell pepper / vegetal notes in some coffee beers. I agree it could be the bean variety. It could also be from using cheap or stale coffee.

Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk

Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: bluesman on February 25, 2014, 05:36:38 PM
I just bought some Kona medium roast. I plan to add  4oz fresh ground to the keg prior to kegging and let it steep at cellar temp for 7 days. I like the whole bean idea too.

Thanks for all of the ideas and suggestions. Keep the suggestions/discussion coming! :)

I added 4oz of fresh ground Kona coffee before racking into the keg. I allowed the fresh ground coffee to steep for 5 days in the kegged beer, and then pulled the muslin bag from the keg. There is a prominant yet moderately balanced level of fresh coffee aroma and flavor in the Oatmeal stout. The coffee seems to meld with the stout flavor as it ages. I want to try some cocoa nibs with the coffee next time around.

Fresh ground coffee cold steeped in the keg works well.  :)
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: HoosierBrew on February 25, 2014, 05:39:46 PM
I just bought some Kona medium roast. I plan to add  4oz fresh ground to the keg prior to kegging and let it steep at cellar temp for 7 days. I like the whole bean idea too.

Thanks for all of the ideas and suggestions. Keep the suggestions/discussion coming! :)



Fresh ground coffee cold steeped in the keg works well.  :)

+1. Sure does.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: krebsy on February 26, 2014, 02:18:24 PM
Hmm, that's interesting.
 
Also, how do you chill? I would think that throwing beans in at flameout would be fine if you can cool quickly. Not so good if the wort will be hot for an extended time.

Immersion chiller.
Title: Re: Adding java to a stout
Post by: Jimmy K on February 26, 2014, 02:35:09 PM
Hmm, that's interesting.
 
Also, how do you chill? I would think that throwing beans in at flameout would be fine if you can cool quickly. Not so good if the wort will be hot for an extended time.

Immersion chiller.
Makes sense. Quick chill = no burnt coffee flavor.