- Anyones Reputable Stout Kit, the more reputable the better (2.7 kg min) ( I used a John Bull 4 lber because I couldn’t get my mitts on something good and it still worked out OK)
- 500 g Unhopped malt extract (I use dry but if you can’t get that use the liquid, light or dark don’t sweat it)
- 250 g honey
- 500 g Choc Malt
- 500 g Crystal Malt
- 10 lbs Cherries (I use frozen but if fresh is only available remember that you need to rupture the cherries someway, freezing makes that happen. If you are a trivia nut, the term is decompartmentalization)
- Hops: Again be flexible, 7 g (0.25 oz) of Cascade in the boil, 14 g (0.5 oz) Sazz as a dry hop (finishing hop), again feel free to be adventurous (I use pellets rather than fresh). If you are a hop head well just go to town.
- Irish Moss (yep about 1 tsp) If this doesn’t happen don’t sweat it but you will end up with chill haze although you won’t see it
- Grain Sock
Some Words of Wisdom
This will make 23 L of beer, so if you don’t trust your tap water then you will have to buy spring or distilled to make up the volume. If using distilled, remember you will need yeast energizer or yeast nutrient to get a good healthy fermentation running
I have also designed this around a two stage fermentation process with the primary being a 7 gal (30 L give or take) food grade pail with a lid, airlock and bung. As I have never used a single stage, I don’t know the side affects, however there is a lot of spent fruit kicking around along with pits and I would hate to see someone blow up 5 gallons in the kitchen over a plugged air lock. Additionally, this is a bit of a costly recipe so you don’t want to dink it up if you can help it.
Finally, as you can see from this, most of my recipies are flexible, I have a tough time getting a good steady supply of beer kits and hops etc. so I have to be flexible. Some days that IPA you were interested in just got turned into a bitter. In this case, most mere mortals have never had a cherry stout (sorry about their luck), they can’t compare it to anything so as long as you are using good quality stuff all will be well.
One final note is pasturization of the cherries. This is a must otherwise you will be staring vinegar in the eye and I am not sure how good this will be on fish and chips. Now I can give you a big spiel about this and how to do it according to Hoyle, but the long and the short is that it is easy to do in small volumes like this, the question is how do you brew. In some of the threads I have been following folks are boiling there water ahead of time (tried it once and got a real tinny taste in my beer, never did it again). What I do is a boil up a wort so say about 9 Litres of water, malts hops Irish Moss etc. I know most recipies say don’t do this but I do, and it works out just fine. Give it a go sometime. So once you have the good boil, dump that lot on your cherries and let it stand for 5 min. Give it a bit of a stir part way through. That will kill all the nasty crap on the cherries that are interested in the beer to.
- Draw 9 litres of cold water and put it under the coals. Add your grains to the grain sock and tie it off, Put it in with the water. Gradually warm the water up, don’t worry you aren’t looking for sugars here rather than colour and flvour. Let it steep like tea but don’t boil, say 15-20 min.
- Ok, mash is done pull the sock out and let it drain. Turn up the heat, add your malt extracts, Irish Moss and boiling hops
- Boil 10-20 min stirring, you don’t want to carmalize the sugars.
- Cherries in the primary (sterilized primary of course)
- Dump the wart on top of the cherries and pasturize (as above).
- Dry hop, add yeast, let the good stuff happen.
- After 3 or so days, we have to get the good stuff out of the primary. Rack for the first time, make up with water to 23 Litres.
- Carry on until the fermentation complete.
- Rack again
- wait until clear (days?) and then transfer off the yeast bed.
- Bottle, I suggest half cup of dextrose to the full 23 litres just before bottling. This will give you good carbonation.
- ALWAYS REMEMBER, CLENLIENESS IS NEXT TO GODLINESS.
- This was my first sort of grain beer. It sounds adventurous but really, if you have made beer before this is a good start for using grains. There is little that can go wrong if you use your melon. My missus quaffed most of this as she is a big Stout fan and she had no complaints (might be why I now have my own draught system in downstairs, tap and all). So if you need to win favour, something to think about.
- This may appear to be a “Readers Digest” version, ask questions if you have some doubts. Hope it works folks. Anyone with any additions please let me know.
- Just a note of Thanks to Charlie Papazion, I based this on his notes.