Home Brewed Irish Stout

I’ve been talking about brewing my own beer for at least 5 years. My buddy Jeff and I have come up with all sorts of beer names and this and that. A few months ago I decided to give it a shot and I posted about my first try at the process. That first batch came out decent, yet not terrific, and encouraged me to continue. This week I finished my second batch, an Irish Stout.

This batch is awesome. I was concerned after my first batch because it was kind of watery and not very flavorful. It was beer, but not the rich, full tasting beer you’d expect to be brewed in your own kitchen. I attribute that to the fact that it was a full extract beer which means it’s basically a syrup extract mixed with hot water. My second batch was still based on extracts, but is mixed with boiled specialty grains and added hops. It’s this mixture of fresh ingredients that really added some flavor and made this batch a much truer beer. It’s dark, has a nice head, and a rich, chocolatey stout flavor. I’m really stoked about it.

In fact I’m so stoked that I decided to formulate my own brew recipe. I got my ingredients for that batch last week. So I have my Irish Stout in the fridge, I have a mild ale in the fermenter, ready to be bottled on Thursday, and I have my very own recipe ingredients sitting on the counter, ready to be brewed as soon as my fermenter frees up.

I think I’m going to continue with the extract beer process for a few more batches until I nail down my recipe. I want to create the perfect bikers ale. Something you can enjoy with a cigar after a long day of riding. A medium amber ale, not too hoppy (it seems the trend is to over-hop everything these days), but still flavorful with just the right amount of carbonation and reasonable alcohol content, maybe around 4 to 4.5%. Once I’ve nailed that, I’m going to switch to full grain brewing and begin brewing my beer completely from scratch.

Here’s a logo I’ve been playing with. I plan to have my first batch of this recipe ready in about 5 weeks. Cheers!