Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Blackberry Stout

Update 12/02/07: We opened up some of the conditioned blackberry stout this weekend, and the verdict is in: it's... OK, I guess. One of my friends thought it had a bitter finish, which I didn't taste. The lady says it's too dry in the finish, which I agree with. In the end, I think it's a good balance between hop and blackberry, and it's the taste I was aiming for, but that the gypsum gave it a little more hardness than needed.
Update 11/19/07: Bottled. FG and ABV below. The beer is not quite as purple anymore, and tastes pretty good. I'm looking forward to the finished product. Yield was a little low at 4 gallons.

A brief foray into the world of fruit beers. This recipe was intended to be a mix of two Irish stout extract recipes I found on www.beerrecipes.org, but I settled for the MoreBeer kit as a starting point, since the differences were not too great. I had intended to use 6 lbs dark malt extract and 1/2 lb each of 80L and 120L. I was going to give Fuggles hops a try, as well. I decided to pasteurize the puree, despite claims of it being asceptic, and hope that most of the pulp will settle out before I rack to the secondary fermenter. The calculated IBUs are probably a bit off due to the gravity of my boil at different times, but hey, it's...

Batch #3
Blackberry Stout (tweaked extract kit), Irish Ale Yeast (White Labs)
--7 lbs Ultralight Malt Extract
--1.5 tsp gypsum*
--1 lb Crystal 40L
--8 oz Black Roasted
--4 oz Black Patent
--4 oz Chocolate Malt
--1 oz Northern Brewer 6.8%AA (60min)
--1 oz Cascade (1min)
--3.1 lbs Seedless Blackberry Puree (~10min)*
OG: 1.051-1.052
FG: 1.016
ABV: 4.7%
Calc. IBUs: 28.6

*My additions, the rest (except for the yeast) is MoreBeer's Stout (Kit175). The gypsum (CaSO4) acts to improve clarity and accentuate the hop bitterness. If you've never used it, do like I did: check your water report and figure out the ppm of sulfate to expect after the addition. Too much has toilet-related consequences. Thanks again, John Palmer...really, read his book!

Much like the porter, the baby beer spit up through the airlock. I really need a blow-off rig for the fermenter.