Guinness Clone

Discussion in 'General Recipe Discussion' started by Piperbrew, Dec 17, 2017.

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  1. Dec 17, 2017 #1

    Piperbrew

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    Having started down the path of all grain and reading my Greg Hughes recipe book I am like a kid in a sweet shop! I wanted to ask if anyone has made a Guinness clone that tastes very near to the real version?

    Additionally what was the head of the beer like as I imagine it would not be as creamy as the original unless you have Nitrogen?

    Finally I might as well tag another question with this thread and it is regarding mashing grains. Do all grains require the same temperature when mashing or do different grains yield better results and different temperatures?

    Cheers

    Pete
     
  2. Dec 17, 2017 #2

    Chippy_Tea

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  3. Dec 17, 2017 #3

    chub1

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    Some clone brews here.You will have to scroll throught them however. I have a Beamish awaiting sampling from a mini keg.The list includes Guiness
    BYO Special Issue - 150 Classic Clone Recipes - 2006 | Brewing | Beer
     
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  4. Dec 17, 2017 #4

    MyQul

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    Ive done it. I seem to remember it was a bit more roasty than guinness. Also guinness is supposed to have a 'twang' to it. Which I've read recipes purposely souring a small amount of wort then adding it when you package. Or using acid malt.
    You do need nitrogen to get the creamy head
    Different temperature yield a more or a less fermentable wort either giving a thinner beer or one with more body
     
  5. Dec 17, 2017 #5

    MickDundee

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    There’s one in the Graham Wheeler book. I made it but subbed some of the flakes barley for oats because I had some oats to use up. It’s not finished conditioning yet though.
     
  6. Dec 17, 2017 #6

    GlentoranMark

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    100g of Acidulated Malt gives the twang. I also love Guinness but I've stopped trying to replicate it, instead using my House Stout base and just tweaking each time:

    3kg Base Malt (Irish Stout Malt when available)
    1kg Flaked Barley or Rolled Oats (Oats work very well and give a more mellow flavour)
    500g Black Barley or Roast Barley (depending on how roasty/ chocolately you like it)
    100g Acid Malt (for the twang)

    any dual purpose hops EKG or similar, hops are not as important so don't worry about late additions etc.

    S04 or S05 but I've recently tried different ale yeasts with decent results.

    That should give you a 19L batch of around 4% beer. Just keep tweaking each time and keep notes.

    Edit, my LHBS sells in these quantities so there is no waste or left over grains. Experiment, try adding the black barley in the sparge instead of mash ect. Mash higher or lower and see the results. I just mix things up each time and produce something slightly different. I will get the Nitrogen bottle some day when I build a new shed.
     
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2017
  7. Dec 17, 2017 #7

    peebee

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    A touchy subject Guinness. I wouldn't be wondering if I could make a Guinness clone near to the "real" version, but more like something much better than Guinness (easily achievable) near to the REAL version - which Guinness stopped brewing 60-70 years ago.

    All the quirky methods are just tricks created by Guinness to keep making a beer that resembles its past glory but at fractions of the cost. Home-brewers don't want to be copying these tricks, but should be attempting to recreate what the tricks are trying to emulate.
    Let us start with Nitrogen. Guinness made a near disastrous move* into 60's keg beer. The high carbonation, acid (carbonic acid from CO2) concoction was not like Guinness at all. Nitrogen was Guinness's saviour where they could still use the high keg pressures but keep the carbonation, and therefore acidity, down. Plus the nitrogen could be got to dissolve in the beer and come out of solution in very fine foam creating the creamy long lasting heads of the real pre-1960s Guinness (needs cold, but a lot of drinkers were moving that way anyhow). They did it to cans too with the famous "widget".

    And the "souring"? Back in the 70-80s I'd heard stories that Guinness was once "vatted" (after all it was a "Porter") and purposely infected with Brettanomyces. Export Guinness was still treated that way. Humm. You can still get this export when abroad - but it's brewed in Belgium under licence (and is terrific). Perhaps the idea of adding purposely soured wort goes back to this? I doubt Guinness go to this much trouble for a "trick" to emulate something that they may or may not have done.

    The way Guinness created creamy heads pre-keg (and therefore pre-nitrogen) is fascinating. I must get round to attempting to copy this one day. Meanwhile, purely CO2 conditioning (a low pressure) can still produce creamy heads on home-brew stouts.


    (EDIT: *Not really true. Just wishful thinking that it would have been disastrous. The UK - and other parts of the world - was already making the disastrous switch to 60's style keg for most of their beers. Guinness were playing with nitrogen by the end of the 50s, but it was too new and they were keeping it to themselves in Ireland. Unfortunately we were all to end up with it eventually. )
     
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  8. Dec 17, 2017 #8

    Piperbrew

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    Interesting. Cheers Guys
     
  9. Dec 17, 2017 #9

    Leon103

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    I wouldn't want to copy the modern day Guinness, just tastes of water these days.
     
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  10. Dec 17, 2017 #10

    MyQul

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    Iirc (as I havent read it for ages) It mentions something along these lines in my stout & porter book (not specifically talking about guinness) that in centuries gone by beer was kept (and aged) wooden barrels and these barrels had bacteria (Brettanomyces) in them. So perhaps many beers, which no longer exist, would have had a 'twang' similar to guinness

    I remember reading something on a blog, that before guinness used nitrogen, widgets, etc, that a bottle of guinness came with a little syringe. Which works the same as my guide to putting a head on a flat beer

    http://www.thehomebrewforum.co.uk/showthread.php?t=50906
     
  11. Dec 17, 2017 #11

    GlentoranMark

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    Next time your in a pub, ask your server to pour it right up to the lip. Don't let it settle. I'm serious on this.

    You will pour the perfect pint btw unless the pubs pipes are set too high.

    This let it settle for 4 minutes is just a ploy to make the drink seem more special.
     
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  12. Dec 17, 2017 #12

    MyQul

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    True dat!. I used to work as a bar man in the biggest irish bar/club in London. At the end of the night we often were allowed to drink as much guinness as we liked before the taxi's came to take use home. I'm sure you can imagine we never used to let it settle. Just pour it and drink it as fast as possible to get as much free beer as we could. Leaving it to settle never made any difference as far as I can tell
     
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  13. Dec 17, 2017 #13

    Lawrence22

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    I drank pretty much nothing but Guinness for 20 years and I don't think I could do this. My brain wouldn't allow me. It's probably a visual thing.
     
  14. Dec 17, 2017 #14

    peebee

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    I've come across references to those syringes too. But that wasn't what I was referring to in the earlier post - something far more kooky and certainly only for the very experimentally minded.

    Trouble is I can't find the references to it now. Hopefully this will nudge someone to post what I'm talking about...

    Guinness was sold from wooden casks pre-1960s. As I said beer conditioned at very low pressure will produce a very fine head. With Guinness that meant putting a pulled (yes, hand-pumped) pint on one side to settle before topping up (more than once). I guess from this comes the procedure mentioned by others above. But another method of dispensing arose, I don't know how widespread but someone I knew said he used to travel on the ferries from Dublin with the fermenting Guinness. I had visions of sloshing open tanks of fermenting beer, but I now think he meant this:

    Most of the Guinness was casked flat and was intended to stay flat. But some of this beer was put into smaller immensely strong casks (2" thick staves iirc). Into these small barrels was also put a portion of fresh unfermented wort, hence the thick staves. When serving most of the pint was pulled from the "flat" cask (I think it was called the bottom cask) and this was topped up from the smaller cask (top cask?) which was obviously a bit lively (!) and produced the thick creamy head.

    To use the Wikipedia speak... "Citation Needed"!
     
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  15. Dec 17, 2017 #15

    Gunge

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    The last ( and it really will be the last ) Guinness I had was transparent! WTF?!? Are they really so hard-up that they've got to resort to stunts like that? Why anyone would want to replicate it in its current incarnation, I can't fathom.
     
  16. Dec 18, 2017 #16

    peebee

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    Finally! I found some references to the method of Guinness serving I'd alluded to. Not the original reference I'd used, but enough to figure I'm not dreaming. What I'd previously got wrong in my searches was the names of the casks - it was "low" and "high" cask - knowing that made the searches easier.

    http://www.beeretseq.com/some-thoughts-on-guinness/

    It's also mentioned in this mammoth informative piece a little way down under "Irish beer styles".

    http://www.europeanbeerguide.net/irlbrew.htm

    What people in this thread were saying about serving modern Guinness seems to have parallels with this method. As I'd mentioned earlier, a lot of Guinness methods are tricks that connect with a time when Guinness really was great.
     
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  17. Dec 18, 2017 #17

    peebee

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    Ahh, that's a Ron Patterson piece - explains why it's so informative (and big!). He's a bit rude about Guinness too.
     
  18. Dec 18, 2017 #18

    BeerCat

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    My stouts improved when i started using wlp004. You have to be careful though if you start out with a high OG it will finish high. You can cold steep the dark grains for a less roasty taste and you should check out this water thread http://www.thehomebrewforum.co.uk/showthread.php?t=64822
     
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  19. Dec 18, 2017 #19

    Piperbrew

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    What is wlpo04 please?
     
  20. Dec 18, 2017 #20

    Sadfield

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