Date Style IBU Boil Target OG Actual OG FG ABV %
1/26/2013 Dry Stout 31.8 75 min. 1.048 1.060 1.026 4.5%

This is the second of my Stout Month brews! With the aim of making a few different stouts and then having a tasting party to share the brews with my beer-loving pals, I decided to add this Guinness clone recipe to the mix. The basic recipe is pretty standard for a dry stout – flaked and roasted barley for some darkness and flavor, and some black patent malt to give it that great obsidian hue – but this one adds a new grain I hadn’t seen before: aciduated malt. Acid malt apparently contains some natural lactic acid, and is also used to aid in head retention. I think it also added a bit to making the final flavor closer to a true Guinness than the rest of the grain bill would have accomplished.


Grain Qty %
Maris Otter pale malt 6 lb 60.3%
Flaked Barley 2.5 lb. 25.1%
Roasted Barley 12 oz. 7.5%
Black Patent Malt .5 lb. 5.0%
Aciduated Malt 3 oz. 2.0%
Hops/Additions Qty Time IBU
Goldings East Kent 1.8 oz 60 min. 31.8
Irish Moss .25 tsp. 10 min.
Yeast/Fermentor additions Qty
White Labs #WLP004 – Irish Ale 2 pkg.

Brewing Notes

Jan 26: Reached the mash temperature of 168° within 15 minutes – the new insulated jacket for my mash tun was a huge help! Maintained the temperature beautifully even without the burner turned on – this will save a bit of electricity there, too. Sparged with 4.5 gallons of 170° water over the grains and let them steep for about 15 minutes. Reclaimed all of the second runnings by squeezing the soaked grains for a total volume of 5.5 gallons pre-boil.

Boiled for an extra 35 minutes to get the gravity from 1.030 to 1.038. In an attempt to get the gravity up to its target of 1.048, I did some calculations and added 2.4 pounds of light malt extract to the kettle, and let it boil for an extra 15 minutes. My result was based on this calculation:
((boil volume * target gravity points) – (boil volume * current gravity points))/38 [gravity of LME].

***UNFORTUNATELY, I realized later that the value I used for the current gravity was incorrect – I used 30 as the current points, when it was really already up to 38. So, my calculation was trying to make up for nearly twice the gravity points as what I actually needed to add, which explains how I ended up with a FG of 1.060, instead of 1.048***

The hops bags weren’t tied tightly enough this time, and so the hop pellets scattered throughout the wort during the boil and cool down. This will probably give the final beer a stronger hop flavor than I want it to have. Cooled the wort to 75° in 30 minutes, and filtered out most of the hops through a metal screen. 4.25 gallon volume into the fermenter, and pitched my yeast.
Jan. 29: Pitched a second vial of the yeast into the carboy to pre-emptively boost the fermentation. With the OG as high as it is, I’m not sure that one vial is going to cut it. Don’t want to overwork those poor little yeasts.
Feb. 2: Did a gravity check (1.026), and while it’s not as low as the final gravity was expected to be, the amount of points processed into alcohol is right in line with expectations. So, it’ll still be a good strong beer, and still be a bit sweet for a dry stout.
Feb. 10: Bottled 3.5 gallons today with 2.5 oz. of corn sugar for priming. Since I was sampling and bottling before I’d had breakfast this morning, I was inspired to name the beer ‘Irish Breakfast’. It’s thick and dark, with good hop bittering on a sweet malty base.

label_007Tasting Notes

Nov. 18: I don’t have any contemporary tasting notes for this one, sadly, but I will say that all of the beers from Stout Month came out great, and will be repeated. I did hold my Stout Party in April of this year, and friends sampled the Beamishish, Irish Breakfast, and Laser Brain beers. This one, Irish Breakfast, was the hands-down favorite of the two true-stouts. The hoppiness combined with the acid malt to gave it a good crisp taste, while the base maltiness weighed it down and kept it from being nothing but top notes.