Carabrown Porter

carabrown_porterCarabrown malt is something that I’ve been itching to use in a beer. I’ve heard that it lends an interesting graham cracker, pie crust flavor similar to victory/biscuit but with some caramel flavors. This recipe was based off one from Briess’ website, with some small tweaks. This should be around 30 IBU, 20L SRM, 1.05 OG (at 68% eft), 5 gal, and 5% ABV.

  • 7.5 lb US 2-row
  • 1.5 lb Carabrown
  • 0.75 lb Crystal 40
  • 0.25 lb Crystal 80
  • 0.25 lb Chocolate malt
  • 0.8 oz UK East Kent Golding (7.2% aa), 90 minutes
  • 1 oz Williamette hops (4.9% aa), 15 minutes
  • 1 oz Fuggle hops (5.3% aa), flameout
  • WLP001

// Mash 1.5 qt/lb at 154F (no chocolate malt) 50 min, start raising to mashout and add chocolate malt, hold at 168F 5 minutes. Collect 7 gal 1.036 pre-boil. Boil 90 minutes, collect 5 gallons 1.049. Chill to 62F, pitch 1L starter. Brewed 3/9/2014 //

The mash first runnings tasted like a super caramel bomb – also comes off a little harsh with tannins.

UPDATE: I really got a little too malt-happy on this recipe. The carabrown malt by itself was enough to bring the flavor, but with the other crystal malts + chocolate malt this tastes a little too “brown”. By that, I mean it just has too many malts fighting for attention that it becomes a little cluttered. Final gravity was 1.011 after 1 week in the primary. Great clarity. Nice flavor, but it thinned out significantly from just a few days earlier in the primary.

THE VERDICT

This was an interesting batch that really demonstrated how much of a factor fermentation temperature can be. I fermented a little bit warmer than necessary (75F) and this caused the yeast to really chow down, resulting in a fairly thin beer despite the higher mash temp and lots of big specialty grain. However, after this conditioned for a while it really developed an excellent “house” character.  Moderate in flavor, unobtrusive, balanced malt and hop character – just an all around solid brown ale / porter. The Williamette came through with a gentle hoppy finish, but the aroma from the Fuggles was non-existent – dominated by the big caramel malts. The crystal 40 probably isn’t needed and removing it will help focus the overall flavor of the beer. Definitely ferment on the cooler side to preserve more body as well.

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Filed under All-grain, Balanced, Brown, Experimental

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