Triple Stout

PreBrew Thoughts

December 2013

The first beer with the big equipment, 15 gallons of stout.

At one point I was focused on making a dry stout to make Black & Tans with. While we can still try a B&T, I’m not going to focus on brewing a super dry beer. I’m gonna take my standard stout recipe and tweak it a bit like I always do. It’s really too sweet to qualify as a Dry.
The stouts are broken up into 6 classes by BJCP. This triple batch of stout should fall into American Stout or Foreign Extra Stout class.
Big Brew-Mash inAmerican Stout is a very broad category. My previous stouts are not like most American Craft stouts, but we are Americans and we’re brewing in America, so I guess that’s the style.
But I’ve always favored Euro brews. I’ve bought all UK ingredients for this beer. I’m thinking that this stout will be a strong Irish stout, which would place it in the Foreign Extra Stout class.
We’ll have a strong base malt profile with the Maris Otter. I’m thinking 3 pounds of roasted and 3 pounds of flaked but could be talked into more or less of each. I was gonna put in some chocolate malt that I’ve got at the house for complexity. Irish Mike puts some (60L?) crystal in his stouts. This will add body and mouthfeel but will add complex sugars to the final beer, which will make it sweeter and all the more impossible to float on a Pale.
I bought 6 ounces of Fuggles and 2 ounces of Kent Goldings. I think I may go back and buy another ounce of Kent Goldings, but that depends on how much base malt we go with. In the brew calculator, I’ve toyed between 18-27 pounds.
I’ve bought Irish Ale yeast, which is a great stout yeast but it won’t be very dry. If we want to make a dry stout, we could use a different yeast in one of the 5 gallon batches. Someone else can take that on if they want. I’ll use the Irish ale and whip it up to ferment 15 gallons, maybe even over-pitch it to see if that dries it out some.

Grain Bill-

  • 24 pounds Maris Otter
  • 2 pounds roasted barley
  • 3 pounds flaked
  • 8 ounces chocolate malt, German Debittered (Carafa II Dehusked 400L)
  • 8 ounces chocolate malt, Belgian (350L)

Hop Bill-

  • 6 oz Fuggles (5.1%) 60 minutes
  • 1 oz East Kent Goldings (6.3%) 40 minutes
  • 1 oz East Kent Goldings (6.3%) 20 minutes

Yeast- Wyeast Irish Ale 1084

Big Brew-Cleaning Tun

The cleaning of the lauter tun

Running the numbers at 75% efficiency for a 15 gallon batch, we should see the following:

  • OG = 1.058
  • FG = 1.016
  • IBU = 44
  • SRM = 40 Lovibond
  • ABV = 6%

These numbers meet BJCP Style Guidelines for both “Foreign Extra Stout” and “American Stout”.

Brew Day

January 11, 2014

Brewers- Charlie, Dickie, Tom, Rob, Alan

Big Brew-Boil Hop

Lots of Fuggles and Goldings

Mash- single infusion, shooting for 150-155 for 2 hours.

  • 8 AM- Charlie and Dickie show up and we start assembling gear and heating water.
  • 9 AM- Pour in 7 gallons of 162 F water into tun. Water temp in tun was about 160. We added 3 more gallons of 180 F water to bring strike temp to 165 F.
  • 9:45- Mashed in at 152 F.
  • 10:30- Temp had dropped to 146 F. Added 1 1/2 gallons of 190 F water to bring it back to 150F.
  • 10:45- Added 1 1/2 gallons of boiling water to bring temp up to 154 F. Stays at temp!
  • 11:30- Decoct 4 gallons into two separate pots and bring to boil. Mash tun stays at 150+.
  • Noon- Add boiling kettles to tun. Temp 164. Add 2 gallons boiling water. Didn’t quite get to mash out temp of 168, but at one point at sparge we checked thermometer and saw 170.
Big Brew-Cold Break

Cold break in the snow bank

  • 12:15- Begin recirculation.
  • 12:30- Begin runoff.
  • 12:45- Begin sparge.
  • 1:30- End runoff. Collected 20+ gallons of wort.

Boil- That big kettle is tough to get boiling.

  • 2:30- Boil
  • 3 PM- Add Fuggles
  • 3:20- Add 1 oz Kent Goldings
  • 3:40- Add 1 oz Kent Goldings, cooling coil, Irish Moss
  • 4 PM- Shut off heat and begin cold break.
In the hole racking into the fermenters.

In the hole racking into the fermenters.

Cold Break-

  • One hour in snow bank and Kyle’s cooling coil

Ferment and Post Brew Thoughts-

Because the kettle is far too big to handle, we racked the wort into three separate primary fermentors. Charlie took one home; Dickie took one home; and I have one in the basement. We collected more than 5 gallons of wort each. We really need to let the boil go longer to reduce volume because gravity is lower than anticipated.

Starting Gravity= 1.046

Two of the three fermenters.

Two of the three fermenters.

That gravity number is a little subjective. We checked it on my hydrometer, Charlie’s hydrometer, and Rob’s hydrometer and came up with three different numbers, ranging between 1.042 on mine to 1.048 on Rob’s. Charlie’s looked to be the most spot on, reading 1.000 in water, so we’ll go with his number of 1.046.

With 6+ gallons each of wort, I have warned Dickie and Charlie of lack of headroom in the fermenters and to be mindful of clogged hoses that lead to explosions.


  • Propagated 4 jugs of Wyeast Irish Ale yeast over a couple of weeks.
  • We each picked one and pitched yeast, shacking the crap out of the fermenters
  • One extra jug went to fridge for possible future brews

By the following morning I had a steady chug going in the air lock.


One week after brewing, we each racked our beer.

Gravity checks 1.014 on my hydrometer. However, my hydrometer has been reading .002-4 low, so I would call it 1.016.Screen shot 2014-01-19 at 3.42.57 PM

But looking at the pic of Charlie’s, I would say that’s more like 1.012.

I think we’ll average it out at 1.014, which gives us an alcohol level of about 4%.

I was a little disappointed that I didn’t totally fill a 5 gallon carboy. I was  an inch or two below the bottom of the neck. I was expecting to have excess. I was a little concerned that we were not as efficient as we should have been in terms of pulling sugars over from the malt, but both Charlies and Rich had excess.

The sample is quite good and I think it will mature into a really nice stout.

March 9- The stout has stayed pretty green tasting through most of February and thin on the mouthfeel. It has been good, but not great. However, I let it rest for a week and as it matures, it really continues to improve. Today the flavors in the beer have blended together beautifully. The roasted was too strong a few weeks ago, but now it’s perfect. And the mouthfeel has improved; it is no longer thin. Another excellent stout.

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