Chocolate Stout

Discussion in 'Beer Brewdays!' started by Hopsteep, Aug 25, 2019.

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  1. Aug 25, 2019 #1

    Hopsteep

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    Under strict order from the girlfriend to make a chocolate stout. The opportunity was taken to purchase several ingredients and stock up whilst the green light was given :beer1:

    Anyway, I thought I’d share the recipe and some pictures from the brew day!
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    The grain bill was Thomas Fawcetts Maris Otter, pale chocolate malt, light crystal and rolled oats.
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    For my water adjustment I opted for the Sulfate/Chloride ratio used by St Austell brewery for their dark beers. Calcium chloride, Epsome salt and gypsum added to the grist and Phosphoric acid used to adjust the ph of the strike water.
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    I was aiming for a PH of 5.4 and got pretty close, certainty within the tolerance of the PH meter. CDB90A03-1A63-4C2E-8B0C-84618F978748.jpeg
    I mashed for an hour at 66 degrees and then fly sparged.

    For the boil, Target and Fuggles were added along with lactose and home made invert sugar. The No.3 invert has been in the freezer for a couple of years. It has an amazing dark flavour.

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    Once chilled, I added cocoa nibs to a saucepan along with a couple litres of the finished wort and brought to the boil to sterilise before throwing the lot into the fermenting bucket.
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    The wort was then transferred in as well and placed into the the brew fridge to cool to pitching temp of 19 degrees (groundwater was 24 degrees so I managed to chill to 28 before I gave up).

    The Ringwood yeast was pitched from a two step starter at 19 degrees. By the morning there was a right mess in the brew fridge so a blow off tube was fitted.

    I’ll post a picture of the finished article when it’s finished!
     
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  2. Aug 25, 2019 #2

    Gulpitdarn

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    Looks good! hope you have more luck than I had with cocoa nibs, they didn't taste very chocolaty to me and the oil destroyed the head foam. All my choccy brews now have Cadburys bournville cocoa powder and then at bottling a 2ml shot of Chocolate essence to each bottle.
     
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  3. Aug 25, 2019 #3

    Hopsteep

    Hopsteep

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    First time trying to add chocolate to a stout. I thought I try the more traditional methods first then go from there. They certainly smelled amazing going into the FV.
     
  4. Sep 12, 2019 at 10:22 AM #4

    Hopsteep

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    Cracked open a small 330ml taster last night after only a few days in the bottle. Massive chocolate aroma and flavour.

    Cocoa nibs did the business and the Ringwood yeast gives it a nice fruity complexity. Hopefully the chocolate flavour stays put and doesn’t fade like heavily hopped pale ales over time.

    There’s now a sankey keg hidden away until Christmas :beer1:
     
  5. Sep 12, 2019 at 10:23 AM #5

    Hopsteep

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    I agree with you, what little head there was quickly disappeared, although that could be partly downy chosen glass having gone through the dish washer
     
  6. Sep 12, 2019 at 10:30 AM #6

    An Ankoù

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    I agree, although I've never tried adding chocolate in any form. Not sure I'd want to drink beer that tastes of chocolate. Young's Double Chocolate is a horrendous brew IMNSHO and I accidently got a few bottles of Sam Smith's Organic Chocolate Stout, which is undrinkable. Still got 2 left and they'll probably be still there on the "research samples" shelf this time next year.
    Having said that, the recipe above looks great (apart from the chocolate).
     
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  7. Sep 12, 2019 at 10:33 AM #7

    Hopsteep

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    I’m not a huge fan either to be honest! But she who must be obeyed absolutely loves the stuff! If it was me I’d leave out the lactose but I was ‘informed’ that it needs to be sweet and chocolaty :coat:
     
  8. Sep 12, 2019 at 2:37 PM #8

    Andy02

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    Very interesting and timely discussion. I too recently brewed a very sweet chocolate, oatmeal, milk stout using cocoa powder (the sugar-free cake-making stuff not the hot chocolate drinking powder). Even with plenty of priming sugar, a 330ml bottle after 2 weeks of conditioning came out as flat as a pancake. No head, no bubbles, just a slight hiss and some smoke when the bottle was uncapped. Is this a direct result of the oils in the cocoa? I've brewed chocolate stout before, using chocolate malt to give it some chocolateyness rather than any cocoa nibs or powder which turned out with a perfect creamy, brownish head. Is there a way round this head-busting 'feature' of cocoa, eg chucking in far more priming sugar? Apologies if this has been answered elsewhere but I'm a lazy sod and haven't searched for it.
     
  9. Sep 12, 2019 at 3:24 PM #9

    JonBrew

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    the cocoa powder would effect head retention but it shouldn't effect carbonation. Think your lack of carbonation may be due to other factors.

    In terms of preventing impact on head formation/retention caused by adding various forms of cocoa, one solution I've heard of but not tried is to make an alcohol tincture by soaking cocoa nibs or raw cocoa powder in vodka for a number of days (shaking the solution daily) then sticking it in the freezer. Freezing the solution causes the fats to separate out and they can then be scraped off before adding dosing the extract into the finished beer at packaging.
     
  10. Sep 12, 2019 at 3:52 PM #10

    Andy02

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    Great advice. Thank you. Just need to work out what caused my feeble carbonation.
     
  11. Sep 12, 2019 at 4:31 PM #11

    pilgrimhudd

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    ashock1 Two of my favourites there!!
     
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  12. Sep 12, 2019 at 4:50 PM #12

    An Ankoù

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    It's definitely a matter of taste, then. acheers.
     
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