Winter Imperial Stout feedback please

Discussion in 'Recipes for Feedback' started by ChicoBrewer, Sep 13, 2018.

  1. ChicoBrewer

    ChicoBrewer Well-Known Member

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    #1 ChicoBrewer, Sep 13, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2018
    Hello everyone. I know it's ambitious but I want to brew an Imperial Stout and rack in time for Christmas. I want it to be malt forward and chocolaty/coffee without adding either of those ingredients directly (strictly malt and grain)

    So being from Chico I of course want to duplicate Narwhal as much as possible.

    I scoured the internet and the SN web site and came up with this

    https://www.brewersfriend.com/homebrew/recipe/view/703613/imperial-stout

    Sure would like some feedback.

    From the SN website

    Overview
    • Alcohol Content 10.2% by volume
    • Beginning gravity 24.2° plato (1.1 SG)
    • Ending Gravity 6.6° plato (1.026 SG)
    • Bitterness Units 60
    Ingredients
    • Yeast Ale yeast
    • Bittering Hops Magnum, Challenger
    • Finishing Hops Challenger
    • Malts Two-row Pale, Caramel, Chocolate, Honey, Carafa III, Roasted Barley
     
  2. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    Seems pretty nice...I'd up the Crystal malt for a big beer like that. My club did a barrel-fill RIS that was big and nice and the total crystal malt was around 8 percent. Maybe make the C-60 a full pound.
     
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  3. Mark Farrall

    Mark Farrall Well-Known Member

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    Recipe looks close enough for a start. You can fiddle with those dark malts forever to get the ratios right. The harsher roasted tastes amongst those are probably the chocolate and roasted barley but the numbers aren't that large.

    The real challenge is getting that fermentation through to the end. Overpitch and aerate longer than you think you can and it's going to take a lot longer in primary.
     
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  4. Head First

    Head First Well-Known Member

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    Agree with both. Pitch should be at least pro brewer big ale. Either a large starter or at least 4 packs of yeast around 60f and as days go by gradually increase temp to 70f. No rush on primary. Honey malt will help Carmel with malt sweetness but won't add much depth. I prefer some extra special malt or c120 for full spectrum of roasty coffee Carmel but yes you could mess with dark malt balances forever.
     
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  5. ChicoBrewer

    ChicoBrewer Well-Known Member

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    Thanks guys. I only have one Stout under my belt and it was an extract kit. I really appreciate the feedback. I have no experience with any of the dark malts either. I googled Special Malt. Are you referring to the drum roasted Breiss? It looks interesting but I'm not sure what it brings to the profile because I have never used it. I have never used honey malt either. I think I'll stick with this malt bill and try others later.

    I'm going to focus on the process. It's a little intimidating having nearly twice as much grain to deal with than my ales.

    What do I need to pay attention to in my ten gallon igloo mash tun?

    I'm shooting for 70% efficiency. Is that reasonable? If don't hit my mash gravity should I add DME to bring it up?

    Is 155 degree mash temp going to give me a good creamy product?

    Should I go for a 90 minute boil to give me more sparge water for better efficiency?

    I really love stouts and porters so I want to figure all of this out.

    Thanks again!
     
  6. Mark Farrall

    Mark Farrall Well-Known Member

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    Once I'm over 8% ABV I knock 5% off efficiency and over 10% ABV it's 10% off. And will often let the mash run longer. I just do a standard single temp mash in the middle of alpha and beta. It's really only the volume of grains that's different for me (BIAB).

    Creamy for me still means rolled oats. I know there's other methods but haven't really looked at it.
     
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  7. Head First

    Head First Well-Known Member

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    Referring to Breiss xtra special malt. Not sure if its drum roasted but is 140ish lovibond and adds raisin plum or slightly burnt raisin as in richer flavor so it doesn't take much to enhance roast barley and chocolate malts. It can be overpowering if to much is added(ask me how I know). A 10gal mash tun probably won't result in enough wort without some sparging. The software will help you out more with volumes than us. Boil time will be affected by volume and it is always good when experimenting with new big beers to keep some DME on hand. Narwhal is really a good beer by the way.
     
  8. ChicoBrewer

    ChicoBrewer Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the input. I batch sparge and the calculator is giving me 9 quarts to do it. I'll figure it out. BTW - I live about ten minutes away from the Sierra Nevada Brewery. Always something delicious to smell around town.
     
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  9. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    I hit 66% efficiency on the one I made Friday, was aiming for 1.118 and hit 1.103. The efficiency hit Mark mentions is probably a good guideline as I assumed I would hit 72%.
     
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  10. ChicoBrewer

    ChicoBrewer Well-Known Member

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    You do BIAB as I recall?
     
  11. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    Mash in a bag. The grist content is so high though the water just can't rinse everything well enough.
     

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