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General Category => All Grain Brewing => Topic started by: mblanks2 on November 02, 2014, 09:56:04 PM

Title: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: mblanks2 on November 02, 2014, 09:56:04 PM
I have a recipe for an big IIPA that I want to age. The recipe is just FWH bitterness and a little 10 minute flavor addition for a calculated 110 IBU's. Knowing that no aroma will be maintained I won't waste my time or hops but I would like to add a little more dimension by adding a mild smoke flavor to the background of this beer and am curious what anyone thinks about a percentage of smoke malt.
Current grain bill is 84% 2-row, 7% Flaked Wheat, 4.7% Caramel malt, and 4.7% Victory.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: hopfenundmalz on November 03, 2014, 12:54:14 PM
Smoke and hops usually don't go well together. If you really want to do this, then I would say don't use much rauchmalt and use spicy hops. The reason for the spicy hops is that smoke is a phenolic, as are most spicy flavors. A Grodziskie made with smoked wheat malt and lots of spicy Saaz hops worked for me. You might try Sterling, and American hop with Saaz character and higher AA and oils.

Hop flavor and aroma fade quickly, are you aging to get rid of those flavors that make an IIPA? Rauchbier is fine for a good while, but is not know for aging.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: erockrph on November 03, 2014, 02:54:24 PM
IIPA's aren't meant for aging. I'd just target an American Barleywine to start.

As far as the smoke malt goes, personally I'm not a big fan except at really low levels in a porter. But even despite my prejudice, I can't think of a worse style to add rauchmalz to than IIPA.

My suggestion would be to brew it as an American Barleywine, and maybe use oak instead of smoke if you want a little extra complexity. That really seems like a scenario that will stand up to aging a lot better than a Rauch IIPA.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: majorvices on November 03, 2014, 02:55:42 PM
IIPA's aren't meant for aging. I'd just target an American Barleywine to start.

As far as the smoke malt goes, personally I'm not a big fan except at really low levels in a porter. But even despite my prejudice, I can't think of a worse style to add rauchmalz to than IIPA.

My suggestion would be to brew it as an American Barleywine, and maybe use oak instead of smoke if you want a little extra complexity. That really seems like a scenario that will stand up to aging a lot better than a Rauch IIPA.

+1 to this. I can't see any amount of smoke marrying well with a IIPA and IIPA age very poorly and are best when fresh. A smoked barleywine, OTOH, could be interesting.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: mblanks2 on November 03, 2014, 03:37:28 PM
Well, it looks like I might need to plan on a barley wine or the like. Thanks for the input.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: kmccaf on November 03, 2014, 03:40:03 PM
IIPA's aren't meant for aging. I'd just target an American Barleywine to start.

As far as the smoke malt goes, personally I'm not a big fan except at really low levels in a porter. But even despite my prejudice, I can't think of a worse style to add rauchmalz to than IIPA.

My suggestion would be to brew it as an American Barleywine, and maybe use oak instead of smoke if you want a little extra complexity. That really seems like a scenario that will stand up to aging a lot better than a Rauch IIPA.

+1 to this. I can't see any amount of smoke marrying well with a IIPA and IIPA age very poorly and are best when fresh. A smoked barleywine, OTOH, could be interesting.

I've thought about a smoked barleywine before, and Denny talked me out of it some years ago on a different forum. I think he was right to do so. The big malty sherry like notes just did not sound like a match for smoke. I just can't see the flavors of smoked malt and a barleywine fitting together. OTOH, it is your beer, and their is only one way to find out if you like it. I do love me a gratzer.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: majorvices on November 03, 2014, 03:43:20 PM
I think a smoked barley wine is potentially doable, worth the risk. Smoked IIPA not at all.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: HoosierBrew on November 03, 2014, 03:48:50 PM
I think a smoked barley wine is potentially doable, worth the risk. Smoked IIPA not at all.

+1.  I could see a smoked barleywine being interesting, if you limit the rauch.  I actually like the idea better in an English barleywine/Old Ale, where hop presence is minimal.  In an IPA/IIPA - never. 
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: mblanks2 on November 03, 2014, 03:51:10 PM
I think a smoked barley wine is potentially doable, worth the risk. Smoked IIPA not at all.

+1.  I could see a smoked barleywine being interesting, if you limit the rauch.  I actually like the idea better in an English barleywine/Old Ale, where hop presence is minimal.  In an IPA/IIPA - never.

Maybe I'll do some research on an old ale then. Something that I can smoke a little and allow to age too. Does that sound doable?
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: HoosierBrew on November 03, 2014, 03:58:46 PM
I think a smoked barley wine is potentially doable, worth the risk. Smoked IIPA not at all.

+1.  I could see a smoked barleywine being interesting, if you limit the rauch.  I actually like the idea better in an English barleywine/Old Ale, where hop presence is minimal.  In an IPA/IIPA - never.

Maybe I'll do some research on an old ale then. Something that I can smoke a little and allow to age too. Does that sound doable?

Yeah, it might be one to either make a small batch of first time around, or use a pretty small amount of smoked malt and then adjust upward the next time.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: mblanks2 on November 03, 2014, 04:16:57 PM
Thanks for all the replys and information.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: reverseapachemaster on November 03, 2014, 04:21:34 PM
There are some smoked IPAs with some serious smoke character to them. I've had a couple and they are pretty good. I am not sure how much smoked malt is used but I would guess around 20%.

It doesn't sound like you are interested in an IPA or IIPA, more a barleywine that you can put some smoke flavor in. I wouldn't do too much but you also have to account for some fading with age. So the question of how much to use depends on how smoky you want the beer and how long you plan on aging it.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: hopfenundmalz on November 03, 2014, 04:31:44 PM
A friend in the club made a pretty tasty smoked American Barleywine. Easy on the smoke is the key.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: mblanks2 on November 03, 2014, 06:09:23 PM
Ok, so here's the story behind all this. I brewed an IIPA about 10 months ago. OG was 1.095 and bitterness at 110, I believe. I utilize a stainless hop spider. With the grain bill as large as it was I was only able to do a 5.5 gallon batch in my mash tun. I put my spider on the bottom of my brew kettle to do a FWH and forgot to take it off the bottom when the wort reached a good level.
Meanwhile hop dust from the pellets make their way through the mesh and are trapped underneath. They scorch during the full boil and I didn't notice until chilled and cleaning up. So, the initial tasting of this beer was horrible but I decided that I would just store them and see what happened. After about 8 months of bottle condition I and few friends decided to chill and try a few. Surficeit to say, they are absolutely wonderful. I've given a few to some of my "beer snob" friends and have had replies such as greatest beer they've ever had, awesome, unbelievable complexity, better than many of the commercial beers available, etc.
Now, with all that said I would like to reproduce it without scorching my hops to the bottom of my kettle. :-[
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: 69franx on November 04, 2014, 04:54:19 PM
Ok, so here's the story behind all this. I brewed an IIPA about 10 months ago. OG was 1.095 and bitterness at 110, I believe. I utilize a stainless hop spider. With the grain bill as large as it was I was only able to do a 5.5 gallon batch in my mash tun. I put my spider on the bottom of my brew kettle to do a FWH and forgot to take it off the bottom when the wort reached a good level.
Meanwhile hop dust from the pellets make their way through the mesh and are trapped underneath. They scorch during the full boil and I didn't notice until chilled and cleaning up. So, the initial tasting of this beer was horrible but I decided that I would just store them and see what happened. After about 8 months of bottle condition I and few friends decided to chill and try a few. Surficeit to say, they are absolutely wonderful. I've given a few to some of my "beer snob" friends and have had replies such as greatest beer they've ever had, awesome, unbelievable complexity, better than many of the commercial beers available, etc.
Now, with all that said I would like to reproduce it without scorching my hops to the bottom of my kettle. :-[
Now that's a great story worthy of being in your bio on here as far as brewing error that turned out great. I can also see why you would like to recreate the brew. Good luck!
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: majorvices on November 04, 2014, 05:11:38 PM
Well, if that's the case what about try smoking the hops on a cold smoker?
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: mblanks2 on November 04, 2014, 08:42:33 PM
Well, if that's the case what about try smoking the hops on a cold smoker?

That's a thought for sure. I've had some people suggest scorching the hops in another vessel and adding to the bk. I'm just trying to consider the most repeatable scenario.
Who knows, maybe I'll place a stainless plate under my spider and repeat the last brew day without having to clean the scorched material from the bottom of the kettle.
It truly is amazing how well this beer has aged and the flavors meld together. I really expected to eventually toss it all, now I want to brew it again.
It's not what I would really consider an IIPA because there is basically no aroma but the bitterness is there then the sweetness of the caramel malts come through with just a hint of smokiness.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: HoosierBrew on November 04, 2014, 10:06:56 PM
Well, if that's the case what about try smoking the hops on a cold smoker?

That's a thought for sure. I've had some people suggest scorching the hops in another vessel and adding to the bk. I'm just trying to consider the most repeatable scenario.
Who knows, maybe I'll place a stainless plate under my spider and repeat the last brew day without having to clean the scorched material from the bottom of the kettle.
It truly is amazing how well this beer has aged and the flavors meld together. I really expected to eventually toss it all, now I want to brew it again.
It's not what I would really consider an IIPA because there is basically no aroma but the bitterness is there then the sweetness of the caramel malts come through with just a hint of smokiness.

So am I right that this only happened with the spider resting on the bottom?  I ask because I have a SS spider and have never had that happen. OTOH it never quite touches the bottom.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: mblanks2 on November 04, 2014, 11:17:48 PM
Well, if that's the case what about try smoking the hops on a cold smoker?

That's a thought for sure. I've had some people suggest scorching the hops in another vessel and adding to the bk. I'm just trying to consider the most repeatable scenario.
Who knows, maybe I'll place a stainless plate under my spider and repeat the last brew day without having to clean the scorched material from the bottom of the kettle.
It truly is amazing how well this beer has aged and the flavors meld together. I really expected to eventually toss it all, now I want to brew it again.
It's not what I would really consider an IIPA because there is basically no aroma but the bitterness is there then the sweetness of the caramel malts come through with just a hint of smokiness.

So am I right that this only happened with the spider resting on the bottom?  I ask because I have a SS spider and have never had that happen. OTOH it never quite touches the bottom.

Yes, you are correct. The spider was sitting directly on the bottom of the kettle. The bottom has a 1/2" pocket underneath from the rim where the mesh allowed the hop dust to transfer through. It was captured in this pocket for the entire 60 minute boil and scorched to the bottom.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: HoosierBrew on November 04, 2014, 11:35:54 PM
Well, if that's the case what about try smoking the hops on a cold smoker?

That's a thought for sure. I've had some people suggest scorching the hops in another vessel and adding to the bk. I'm just trying to consider the most repeatable scenario.
Who knows, maybe I'll place a stainless plate under my spider and repeat the last brew day without having to clean the scorched material from the bottom of the kettle.
It truly is amazing how well this beer has aged and the flavors meld together. I really expected to eventually toss it all, now I want to brew it again.
It's not what I would really consider an IIPA because there is basically no aroma but the bitterness is there then the sweetness of the caramel malts come through with just a hint of smokiness.

So am I right that this only happened with the spider resting on the bottom?  I ask because I have a SS spider and have never had that happen. OTOH it never quite touches the bottom.

Yes, you are correct. The spider was sitting directly on the bottom of the kettle. The bottom has a 1/2" pocket underneath from the rim where the mesh allowed the hop dust to transfer through. It was captured in this pocket for the entire 60 minute boil and scorched to the bottom.

Gotcha. Sounds like we have pretty much the same spider - mine has a pocket of ~ that size on the bottom. I just trimmed mine to sit around an inch or two above the bottom of my kettle to let wort circulate effectively. Never occurred to me about trapped debris scorching if it sat on the bottom. Makes sense.

EDIT  -  FWIW I use this one :  http://www.stainlessbrewing.com/Hop-Spider-with-seam-welds_p_158.html
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: erockrph on November 05, 2014, 12:41:21 AM
Well, if that's the case what about try smoking the hops on a cold smoker?

That's a thought for sure. I've had some people suggest scorching the hops in another vessel and adding to the bk. I'm just trying to consider the most repeatable scenario.
Who knows, maybe I'll place a stainless plate under my spider and repeat the last brew day without having to clean the scorched material from the bottom of the kettle.
It truly is amazing how well this beer has aged and the flavors meld together. I really expected to eventually toss it all, now I want to brew it again.
It's not what I would really consider an IIPA because there is basically no aroma but the bitterness is there then the sweetness of the caramel malts come through with just a hint of smokiness.
I'm wondering if any reactions happened between the hop oils and the hot wort. If you try scorching some hops I'd do it in a low gravity wort. Then you could collect it, cold crash it for a couple days, then run it through a coffee filter to try to get all the scorched bits out. I'd add it to the kettle at flameout.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: mblanks2 on November 05, 2014, 12:50:10 AM
Well, if that's the case what about try smoking the hops on a cold smoker?

That's a thought for sure. I've had some people suggest scorching the hops in another vessel and adding to the bk. I'm just trying to consider the most repeatable scenario.
Who knows, maybe I'll place a stainless plate under my spider and repeat the last brew day without having to clean the scorched material from the bottom of the kettle.
It truly is amazing how well this beer has aged and the flavors meld together. I really expected to eventually toss it all, now I want to brew it again.
It's not what I would really consider an IIPA because there is basically no aroma but the bitterness is there then the sweetness of the caramel malts come through with just a hint of smokiness.
I'm wondering if any reactions happened between the hop oils and the hot wort. If you try scorching some hops I'd do it in a low gravity wort. Then you could collect it, cold crash it for a couple days, then run it through a coffee filter to try to get all the scorched bits out. I'd add it to the kettle at flameout.
This was something my LHBS owner suggested. We just haven't decided on a good plan of action on it as of yet. That's why I'm exploring additional options i.e. the smoke malt, etc.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: majorvices on November 05, 2014, 01:15:26 PM
Since you suspect the flavor came from the scorched hops I would look that direction, and smoked hops - maybe even slightly charred hops on smoker or in oven - would be the way I'd go.

If the flavor really came from scorching I think you got really lucky. Every scorched beer I have ever tasted, (and have unfortunately tasted a few either from electric elements in BK, or from scorched malt in MT and from actual scorched wort from direct fire kettle), have all tasted more like the smoke you'd get from a cross between and ash tray and a tail pipe rather than pleasant wood smoke.

I've never smoked hops before, but I have heard of people who have done it. Now I'm excited to try it
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: HoosierBrew on November 05, 2014, 01:27:07 PM
Trying to picture what hops would be better than others if you smoked them. I almost think that the really citrusy ones (Centennial, Amarillo, etc.) would be the least good and maybe the spicy or piney ones could be better given the added phenolic flavor. Just a WAG. I'd like to hear how a (deliberately) smoked hop beer came out for somebody.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: hopfenundmalz on November 05, 2014, 01:40:25 PM
A few hers back Charlie P. wrote about a beer with smoked hops in Zymurgy.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: mblanks2 on November 05, 2014, 01:44:11 PM
Chinook and CTZ were used in this beer. I may try a small wort on the stove top with the intial FWH and slowly attempt a repeat. I just don't want risk loosing a beer. I may come up with several opinions and opt to do smaller 1 gallon batches as a trial.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: majorvices on November 05, 2014, 02:04:38 PM
A few hers back Charlie P. wrote about a beer with smoked hops in Zymurgy.

A few "hers" back. Is that how you count time in ex-wives? ;)
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: denny on November 05, 2014, 04:27:21 PM
A few hers back Charlie P. wrote about a beer with smoked hops in Zymurgy.

IIRC, he was talking about it but I don't believe he ever brewed it.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: hopfenundmalz on November 05, 2014, 05:11:42 PM
A few hers back Charlie P. wrote about a beer with smoked hops in Zymurgy.

A few "hers" back. Is that how you count time in ex-wives? ;)

If you're going to have a typo it should be worthy of ridicule.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: jeffy on November 05, 2014, 10:45:10 PM
Since you suspect the flavor came from the scorched hops I would look that direction, and smoked hops - maybe even slightly charred hops on smoker or in oven - would be the way I'd go.

If the flavor really came from scorching I think you got really lucky. Every scorched beer I have ever tasted, (and have unfortunately tasted a few either from electric elements in BK, or from scorched malt in MT and from actual scorched wort from direct fire kettle), have all tasted more like the smoke you'd get from a cross between and ash tray and a tail pipe rather than pleasant wood smoke.

I've never smoked hops before, but I have heard of people who have done it. Now I'm excited to try it

This is also my opinion on the aspect of scorched flavors.  I'm sensitive to it and can pick it up better than most, more as ashtray burnt than pleasant smokiness.
I've cold smoked hops.  Whole hops work better than pellets.  I smoked some Warrior and use them late and dry and got a lot more smoke in the end product than I expected. 
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: majorvices on November 05, 2014, 10:50:57 PM
Since you suspect the flavor came from the scorched hops I would look that direction, and smoked hops - maybe even slightly charred hops on smoker or in oven - would be the way I'd go.

If the flavor really came from scorching I think you got really lucky. Every scorched beer I have ever tasted, (and have unfortunately tasted a few either from electric elements in BK, or from scorched malt in MT and from actual scorched wort from direct fire kettle), have all tasted more like the smoke you'd get from a cross between and ash tray and a tail pipe rather than pleasant wood smoke.

I've never smoked hops before, but I have heard of people who have done it. Now I'm excited to try it

This is also my opinion on the aspect of scorched flavors.  I'm sensitive to it and can pick it up better than most, more as ashtray burnt than pleasant smokiness.
I've cold smoked hops.  Whole hops work better than pellets.  I smoked some Warrior and use them late and dry and got a lot more smoke in the end product than I expected.

How did you like the beer, Jeff?
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: jeffy on November 05, 2014, 10:59:22 PM
Since you suspect the flavor came from the scorched hops I would look that direction, and smoked hops - maybe even slightly charred hops on smoker or in oven - would be the way I'd go.

If the flavor really came from scorching I think you got really lucky. Every scorched beer I have ever tasted, (and have unfortunately tasted a few either from electric elements in BK, or from scorched malt in MT and from actual scorched wort from direct fire kettle), have all tasted more like the smoke you'd get from a cross between and ash tray and a tail pipe rather than pleasant wood smoke.

I've never smoked hops before, but I have heard of people who have done it. Now I'm excited to try it

This is also my opinion on the aspect of scorched flavors.  I'm sensitive to it and can pick it up better than most, more as ashtray burnt than pleasant smokiness.
I've cold smoked hops.  Whole hops work better than pellets.  I smoked some Warrior and use them late and dry and got a lot more smoke in the end product than I expected.

How did you like the beer, Jeff?

Well, I like smoked beers.  This one was pretty good, smokier than I expected it to be.  It makes a nice shortcut if you're brewing a hop-centric smoked beer.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: majorvices on November 05, 2014, 11:11:09 PM
Cool, thanks for the feedback. I'm thinking about dry hopping an oz or tow of centennial to an IPA to a pin (5 gallon firkin). I expect it will be interesting, at least.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: hopfenundmalz on November 06, 2014, 02:04:40 AM
Since you suspect the flavor came from the scorched hops I would look that direction, and smoked hops - maybe even slightly charred hops on smoker or in oven - would be the way I'd go.

If the flavor really came from scorching I think you got really lucky. Every scorched beer I have ever tasted, (and have unfortunately tasted a few either from electric elements in BK, or from scorched malt in MT and from actual scorched wort from direct fire kettle), have all tasted more like the smoke you'd get from a cross between and ash tray and a tail pipe rather than pleasant wood smoke.

I've never smoked hops before, but I have heard of people who have done it. Now I'm excited to try it

This is also my opinion on the aspect of scorched flavors.  I'm sensitive to it and can pick it up better than most, more as ashtray burnt than pleasant smokiness.
I've cold smoked hops.  Whole hops work better than pellets.  I smoked some Warrior and use them late and dry and got a lot more smoke in the end product than I expected.

Senior Smoke!
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: mblanks2 on November 07, 2014, 12:28:01 AM
Lot's of ideas to mull around here. I'm going to look at doing small split batches of maybe a gallon each.
1) Mildly burn/scorch some of the original fwh's in a little wort in a separate vessel.
2) Cold smoke a small amount of hops to dry hop with or add to a 1 gallon batch while boiling.
3) Try a small percentage of smoke malt.
4) Maybe try to re-create the original scenario on a stainless plate to prevent the cleanup of the kettle.
5) Brew the original recipe without scorching the hops to see if it's just not worth all the hassle, but with this level of complexity, I just don't know.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: mblanks2 on November 10, 2014, 01:23:25 AM
18 lbs Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM) Grain 9 76.6 %
.5 lbs Smoked Malt (Weyermann) (2.0 SRM) Grain 10 2.3 %
1 lbs 8.0 oz Wheat, Flaked (1.6 SRM) Grain 11 6.4 %
1 lbs Caramel Malt - 60L (Briess) (60.0 SRM) Grain 12 4.3 %
1 lbs Victory Malt (biscuit) (Briess) (28.0 SRM) Grain 13 4.3 %

So how does this look to get a "Slight" smoke flavor into this grain bill? This will still be 110 IBU's calculated and an estimated 10% ABV. Aged for 8 month after primary. This is the original grain bill with added smoked malt also change the style to "Other Smoke Beer" with a higher than normal IBU level.
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: chinaski on November 12, 2014, 06:53:48 PM
If the beer turned out great, why not just do the same "mistake" again?  I take it scrubbing your brew kettle is the main sticking point?
Title: Re: Smoke Malt % in a IIPA
Post by: mblanks2 on November 12, 2014, 08:55:47 PM
If the beer turned out great, why not just do the same "mistake" again?  I take it scrubbing your brew kettle is the main sticking point?

Exactly! I have considered trying to repeat the process with a small stainless plate underneath the spider to prevent sticking to the kettle.