Gag Reflex

Chocolate Oatmeal Imperial Stout


Time to get a little crazy. Gonna attempt an Imperial Stout that hopefully will end up in a barrel for an extended amount of time.

Lots of mistakes as far as the recipe goes but whatever, gotta start somewhere.

And like Tom says, “It will be beer”.

October 22, 2017

Chocolate Oatmeal Imperial Stout – 6.5 gallons

Brewer: Charles. That’s it. Just Charles.

Calculated Stats:

  • Est. OG – 1.11
  • IBU – 71
  • SRM – 44
  • Est. ABV – 10%

Grain Bill

  • 15 lbs. Pale Malt
  • 5 lbs. Maris Otter
  • 5 lbs. Flaked Oats
  • 1.5 lbs. Chocolate Malt
  • 1 lb. Roasted

Hop Bill

  • 1 oz. Warrior pellet 16.2% – 60 mins
  • 1 oz. East Kent Goldings pellet 6.1% – 60 mins
  • 3 oz. Fuggle pellet 5% – 30 mins
  • 2 oz. East Kent Goldings pellet 6.1% – 30 mins
  • 1 oz. Willamette pellet 5.5% – flameout/whirlpool


  • Prepared 13 gallons treated with Camden the night before. Added another 2 gallons during the brew.


  • Wyeast 1728 – Scottish Ale

Our Scottish ale strain is ideally suited for the strong, malty ales of Scotland. This strain is very versatile, and is often used as a “House” strain as it ferments neutral and clean. Higher fermentation temperatures will result in an increased ester profile.

2 smack packs started Thursday night. Malt added Friday night. Cold crashed Saturday night.


  • 7 oz. Trader Joe’s 72% Cacao Dark Chocolate – chopped finely


Mash Schedule

Mash in:

9:50 – Only Pale and Maris Otter malt and 2 lbs. of oats.

Strike temp. 170˚ – 8.5 gal. – Mash temp. 150˚

Bumped with 2 gallons 180˚-  Mash temp. 156˚

Add remaining 3 lbs. oats.

11:05 – add Chocolate and Roasted – mixed thoroughly.

Mash Out:

11:20 – 3 gal. – 210˚ – Mash temp. 165˚

11:30 – Vorlauf – cleared REALLY fast

11:40 – Runoff

12:15 – Stop runoff – collected 10 gal.

Refractometer reading 1.093


12:35 – Boil

12:45 – Hops in baskets

1:13 – Hops in baskets

1:40 – Irish Moss – Chiller

1:50 – Flame out – Hops in wort – pull hop baskets

Add chocolate – Chiller on

Refractometer reading dead on 1.11

Chilled to 76˚ – pull chiller

Whirlpool and settle for about 30 mins.

Transfer 7gal. to 13 gal. stainless fermenter.

Sample – WOW what a kick in the NUTS. VERY sweet (duh). Hard to get down. This yeast has its work cut out for it.

Hydrometer reading 1.092 ?????

3:00 – Pitch yeast (poured of much of the liquid)


Should have worked the recipe more.

Yes, I know this was not the kind of chocolate to use but whatever, bite me.

Should have bumped yeast another time. Not sure what I pitched will work.

Too much oats.

Too much chocolate malt.

Good call to add dark grains at end of mash.

Probably too much chocolate.

Gotta find a barrel. Maybe rum? That sounds kind of good.

Oct. 26, 2017

Panic time. Fermentation stopped dead on Tuesday (24th). No way the yeast has eaten all the sugars yet.

Been thinking about the grommet on this fermenter. Did not seem like it was in the best condition when racking on brew day but I decided to leave it.

Gravity reading .026 – Why so low if no gas getting through airlock.

Getting through the grommet instead? After thinking about it more YES.

However, decided to go ahead and pitch 1 more smack pack. No starter. Did not want to dilute the beer.

Also replaced the grommet.

Friday morning Airlock was filed with gas but no active bubbling. An improvement.

Oct. 29, 2017

While racking Redcoat v2 to kegs and prepping to bottle, I pulled another sample of  this beer. Gravity reading .024 bringing the ABV in at 8.8%. Not what was predicted yet but I figure this fermentation is going to need a few weeks more than normal. Will let it ride in primary for now. I do not expect this to get much past 9%.

How about the taste? I am stunned. Can not believe how good it is. Sweet with lots of chocolate. Starting to think I don’t want to ruin this by putting it in a barrel.

March 8, 2018

Somewhere along the line I racked this to a glass carboy to let age for an extended amount of time. I was hoping to find a Rum barrel to put it in but no luck.

A few times over the last month while working in the beer lab, tonight included, I have heard a bubble pass through the airlock on this carboy. Is there still some fermentation going on?

Having a hard time deciding what to do with this. Bottle all of it? Bottle some, keg some? Seriously considering kegging it all and serving on nitro at the crawfish boil.
















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