This is an interpretation of BYO’s Deschutes Obsidian Stout Clone recipe. I like it, but it turned out way too hoppy — CDA (or whatever you want to call it) territory. The main reason for this is the fact that I have been using a crappy plastic-and-spring kitchen scale, which is terrible for measuring small quantities of light, fluffy hops. This beer made me finally break down and buy a digital kitchen scale.
I couldn’t find the hops called for at the homebrew supply store, so I played around a bit. I kept the same AAU’s but used Northern Brewer for all the mid- and late-hops. Willing to sacrifice some subtle hop austerity (the more proper stout hop character), I opted instead for a little bit of odd interest. I wanted to get a sense of that somewhat unusual “rough-hewn” NB character (and I think I did!).
An interesting observation: right out of the kegerator it’s quite hoppy, but let it warm to a more appropriate American Stout serving temperature, and this beer comes across as more balanced (malts seem to express themselves better).
I have no photos pertaining to beer for this post, so here’s one of the Raveonettes:
Style: American Stout
Brew Date: Sunday, 1-5-14
Transfer to Secondary: Saturday, 1-11-14
Kegged: Saturday, 1-25-14
Base Malt: 6.8 lb. light liquid malt extract (LME) 2 °L
- 1.3 lb. black malt 530 °L
- 1.0 lb. crystal malt 80 °L
- 9.5 oz. Carapils 2 °L
- 9.5 oz. Western Munich malt 10 °L
- 9.5 oz. Western wheat malt 2 °L
- 1.4 0z. roasted barley 575 °L
Yeast: White Labs WLP002 English Ale (pitched at 68°F, started 2 nights before [Friday night], conditioned on stir plate)
- “Tomahawk/Warrior/Columbus” @13.8 alpha – pellets
- Northern Brewer @ 9.7 alpha – whole cone
- 0.85 oz. Columbus at 90 min
- 0.5 oz. Northern Brewer at 30 min
- 0.8 oz. Northern Brewer 5 min
- 1.055 at pitch 1-5-14
- 1.018 at kegging 1-25-14
- First attempt at full-volume boil. Probably due to the time took to steep grains and bring water to temp in the cold weather, I got only 3.3 gallons (before make-up water) from a 6 gallon start!
- Instead of the following the directions (time and extra steps) for steeping grains at 170° for 35 minutes in 1.5 gallons, I just put the grains in cold, brought it up to 170° and held grains at 166-175 (best I could do for controlling temp) for 10 minutes. Water started at 11: 15. 90 minute boil started at 12:12.
- OG came in way low. Should have been 1.068. I suspect this, in part, to be due to my steeping method above. Why else though? I had all the necessary LME, which should have provided most of the sugars.