Author Topic: Roasty Porter Grains  (Read 594 times)

Offline rodwha

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Roasty Porter Grains
« on: April 26, 2018, 06:32:42 AM »
I was given the ingredients to make a high gravity milk porter. I prefer my beers to run up to about 7% and decided to stretch the volume out and add a bit of grains I have on hand. This will water down the roasty stuff that makes it a porter. On hand I only have a few dark grains left. What would you choose singularly or together to rebuild the roasty backbone? This is what I have:

Briess chocolate 350
Black roasted barley
Black patent
Midnight wheat (yea, only dark and not roasty)

I’m stretching this from a 2.5 gal batch to a 4 gal. I figured I’d add 1/4 lb of black patent.

Offline Phil_M

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Re: Roasty Porter Grains
« Reply #1 on: April 26, 2018, 10:28:03 AM »
I may be alone in this, but part of what defines a porter for my is Brown Malt. When I think "roasty backbone", I think brown malt.

So if it was me, I'd use the midnight wheat. Of the grains listed it most fits what I'd be wanting from brown malt. However, dark grains aren't going to give you much more in the way of fermentables, so just make sure you add some more base malt as well.
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Offline 802Chris

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Re: Roasty Porter Grains
« Reply #2 on: April 26, 2018, 10:40:55 AM »
Personally I love chocolate malt. I use it as the main dark grain in all my dark beers. I think it provides strong enough backbone without too much acrid or ashy flavor. When used right it gives me hints of chocolate on the nose, with coffee flavor and just enough roast

Offline KellerBrauer

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Re: Roasty Porter Grains
« Reply #3 on: April 26, 2018, 11:43:48 AM »
I may be alone in this, but part of what defines a porter for my is Brown Malt. When I think "roasty backbone", I think brown malt.

Phil_M, you’re not alone on this at all.  Brown malt is exactly what gives a well crafted porter that wonderful roasted flavor, especially in the pre-prohibition versions.
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Offline rodwha

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Re: Roasty Porter Grains
« Reply #4 on: April 26, 2018, 09:35:37 PM »
So I found what the various grains in the kit contained, which is equal parts (1/2 lb ea) of Irish stout malt, c-30, and black malt.

If Midnight wheat lacks a roasty character wouldn’t I want to forgo using it?

Offline Ale Farmer

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Re: Roasty Porter Grains
« Reply #5 on: April 27, 2018, 01:28:09 AM »
I agree that brown malt makes a porter, but with the grains you have, I'd add a bit of chocolate.
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Bottled:Spruce Ale, Wit, ESB, Vienna Lager, Nut Brown Ale, Amber Ale, Irish Red Ale, Mild Ale, Brown Porter, Spruce Porter.

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Offline rodwha

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Re: Roasty Porter Grains
« Reply #6 on: April 27, 2018, 02:02:45 AM »
The fellow that have me the kit brewed half of it and said it was way too sweet. I’m averse to overly sweet and figure that A) increasing the volume to 4.25 gals will reduce that, and B) wondered about black patent adding that roasty bitterness to smooth that out.

I had figured on 1/4 lb of both the chocolate and black patent, which would bring the SRM back up to 40 where it was, but if the concensus is that the chocolate would be better I’ll go that route.

As is is this a good representation of a porter?

Offline KellerBrauer

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Re: Roasty Porter Grains
« Reply #7 on: April 27, 2018, 11:51:57 AM »
Greetings rodwha - if you want to reduce the sweetness in your beer, you would start by lowering the mash temperature to about 145-153*F.  This will make the beer a little drier,  it also reduce the body a bit.  If you want to further reduce the sweetness of the beer, you can use a yeast that has a higher level of attenuation - say in the high 70’s or low 80’s.

Regarding your malt selection, I would prefer using the chocolate malt over the black patent.  However, if you choose to, you can use both but in small quantities - no more than 2-3oz of the black patent and no more than 3-4oz of the chocolate as a start in a 5G batch.

Hope this helps!

Good luck!
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Offline 802Chris

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Re: Roasty Porter Grains
« Reply #8 on: April 27, 2018, 01:13:14 PM »
Also if you are worried about perceived sweetness, make sure you select the right yeast strain. if you choose a strain that for example doesn't ferment maltriose, you will end up with more body which could be perceived as sweetness.

Offline rodwha

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Re: Roasty Porter Grains
« Reply #9 on: April 27, 2018, 02:03:23 PM »
I figured it was the lactose that brought on the sweetness this fellow mentioned. This kit is mostly extract.

I did figure on 2 oz of black patent and 4 oz of chocolate.

The yeast it came with is S-04.

Offline rburrelli

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Re: Roasty Porter Grains
« Reply #10 on: April 27, 2018, 03:55:20 PM »
I also agree that the yeast strain is what is added the perceived  sweetness more than anything else.
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Offline rodwha

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Re: Roasty Porter Grains
« Reply #11 on: April 27, 2018, 06:22:43 PM »
Hmmm... Maybe. He didn’t open the yeast that came with it so I’m not sure what he used. I’d imagine he used the same yeast. Buying kits I’d imagine he didn’t stray much if any.

Offline Nathan

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Re: Roasty Porter Grains
« Reply #12 on: April 28, 2018, 05:40:24 PM »
Hmmm... Maybe. He didn’t open the yeast that came with it so I’m not sure what he used. I’d imagine he used the same yeast. Buying kits I’d imagine he didn’t stray much if any.
Try the midnight wheat and some Munich to boost the abv and give some body


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Offline rodwha

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Re: Roasty Porter Grains
« Reply #13 on: April 28, 2018, 11:31:45 PM »
I don’t have Munich on hand.