Monday, March 3, 2008

Brew #5: Disaster Porter - Update

I racked the Disaster Porter to secondary on Friday. The gravity is now 1.012 which is a little thin, but still within the range. I tasted it and was pleased to find that much of the bitterness has faded, leading me to think I didn't mess up the temperature on the top end, but that the recipe had WAY too much bitterness so I did some more research.

The recipe I found on the web called for 1.5 oz of Galena Hops at 30 minutes, 1 oz of Cascades at 30 min and 1 oz of Tettnager at 5 minutes resulting in over 57 Bittering Units, which is outside the range for a Porter. I found other references to that recipe where they boiled the Galena for 60 minutes which would result in an IBU of 60. That is high for an IPA, and double what the average Porter would have! For my brew, I adjusted the recipe to reduce the IBU to 55, the top end of the range for a porter according to Beer Smith, but in hindsight still way too high.

The original recipe was an extract recipe but it didn't have 60 minutes of boil time and did things in a weird order and called for sparging of the steeping grains, which I had never seen before, so I converted it to an all-grain, did a normal 60 minute boil, and reduced the hops.

I now think that the recipe had the right ingredients, just the wrong quantities. I found other Black Butter Clone recipes that have a similar grain bill, and the same hops, just in lesser quantities, with IBUs; between 27 and 40.

My prediction is that the beer will need to be aged for a month or two longer than usual, and will taste more hoppy than a porter should, but it will be drinkable. I will pay closer attention to the numbers next time I find a recipe online, and I will redo this recipe sometime in the future with the following recipe, IBU should be 30, OG should be 1.060:

10.5 lbs 2-row malt
8 oz chocolate malt
4 oz black patent malt
8 oz honey malt
4 oz Roasted Barley
4 oz rice hulls for sparging

0.75 oz Galena Hops, pellets (60 min)
0.5 oz Cascade Hops, whole (30 min)
1 oz Tettnager hops, pellets (2 min)

Mash at 155 for 30 minutes.

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