I have been sitting on this recipe for a LOOOOOONG time, and today is finally the day it gets brewed! I really enjoy a nice porter these days, so I am hoping that this beer will fall into that category. It is inspired by JZ's award-winning recipe, but far from his original formula. As I sit here and type this, I am mid-mashout...and the house smells absolutely incredible!
Besides this being my first porter, this is the first time I crushed my own grains using my brand spankin' new (pics at bottom) CRANKANDSTEIN 2A! of course my drill's battery died mid-crush, but other than that, the mill worked perfectly. here's hoping my efficiency starts hitting mid 70s from here on out...
Chocko-Porter - brewed 1/5/2013 - 4 lbs 4 oz Crisp Marris Otter - 12 oz Weyermann Munich II - 7 oz Briess C-40 - 4 oz Briess C-60 - 5 oz Crisp Pale Chocolate - 3 oz Crisp Chocolate - 1 oz De-Husked Carafa II - 1 oz Willamette pellets (7.8% AAs) (.75 @ 60, .125 @ 45, .125 @ 2) - 1 pack Safale US-05 - 4 oz Hersheys Cocoa Powder
anticipated: OG 1.062 - IBU 34 - ABV 6.0%
had an interesting brew day. first off, I mashed for about 90 minutes because my wife and I went out to "grab a quick lunch", and yadda yadda I mashed for 90 minutes. I had kept my kettle in my pre-heated to 170° oven, and it dropped from 155° to 151°, so that wasn't shabby at all. mashed out for a few minutes, then got the boil going. with about 2 minutes left, I added in the cocoa powder.
I thought I had a really good boil, almost too much actually, so I anticipated maybe only getting 2.25 gallons in the LBK. my eyes must have played tricks on me though, because I had 3.25 gallons left (usually shoot for 2.8) post boil! S-O-B! I guess this crazy dark wort was harder to gauge or something. I dunno. so I filled the LBK up with my typical 2.5 gallons, and got nothing but clean goodness in there. so that's a plus. then I whipped out the hydrometer to see what the damage was...
so despite my best efforts to mess things up, I only missed my target gravity by a single point, and the stats are as follows: OG 1.061 - IBU 30 - ABV 6% efficiency a massive 85%!!! score a point for the crankandstein already! and I look at things this way too, if I hadn't made the happy mistake of not boiling off enough water, this porter would have been WAY out of style and 7% alcohol.
I added the whole pack of yeast because of the relatively high gravity, and the fact that it's "use by date" is 01/2013. so I was thinking that it was nearing its last legs.
ferment in the upper 60s for about 2 weeks, and plan on bottling on the 19th or 20th of January. ~update 1/11: had a little swing over the first couple of days. started nice at 68, then up to 73 overnight, down to 62 the next day, but then I found a "perfect" spot in the house (sadly for my wife, right in the dining room! ) and the ferm temp has been sitting pretty between 66-68 since.
carb and condition for about 3 weeks, and perhaps pop the first test bottle on my birthday (2/15), but if I were a betting man, this beer will come into its own sometime in March
update 1/18/13: bottled today, and there was evidence of an infection in the LBK...I think this keg will RIP at this point (several batches have shown infections now. it just won't come clean anymore). wanted to NOT disturb the icky layer growing on top of the beer, but that wasn't in the cards. after I filled a few bottles I checked on said layer, it had broken and fallen into the rest of the beer. fuuuuudge.
there was a slight "off" odor, and a twinge of "something isn't right here", but neither were overpowering enough to dump this batch. so I'll leave the bottles alone for a few weeks here, and see if anything starts growing in them. if not, I'll definitely be sampling one mid-February
update 2/8/13: couldn't wait! my desire to see what happened made me crack open a bottle a bit early, however, it wasn't a lost cause. the bottle I sampled displayed only a slight "off" aroma and flavor, as the wonderful other aspects of this beer did their best to stand out. A bit muddled because it is still young, but the desired roasty and chocolatey notes are currently present. While this probably won't be the award winner I thought it might be, a few more weeks of conditioning time should result in, at least, a decent porter
update 3/13/13: the "off" characters are still there, and it IS a decent porter, but it could've been spectacular. ~sigh~ DEFINITE re-brew later this summer...should be great for the fall!