simplified parti-gyle brewing: imperial american stout, small beer

over the past few months, I have noticed a gradual increase in my collection of leftover specialty grains.

  • last-minute recipe alterations, quarter-pound grain additions, and preliminary miscalculations have results over time in a sealed bucket full of malted odds and ends.  the majority of my leftovers are of the high-roast/variety used sparingly in stouts, quads, black lagers, etc.
  • knowing firsthand that long-gone leftovers just end up in the compost, I decided to clean house and make an imperial american-style stout with all of my dark grains and a liberal application of 2-row:
    • 30.00 lb Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM) Grain 88.11 %
      0.75 lb Barley, Flaked (1.7 SRM) Grain 2.20 %
      0.75 lb Black (Patent) Malt (500.0 SRM) Grain 2.20 %
      0.75 lb Carafa II (412.0 SRM) Grain 2.20 %
      0.50 lb Black Barley (Stout) (500.0 SRM) Grain 1.47 %
      0.40 lb Special B Malt (180.0 SRM) Grain 1.17 %
      0.30 lb Cara-Pils/Dextrine (2.0 SRM) Grain 0.88 %
      0.30 lb Caramel/Crystal Malt – 10L (10.0 SRM) Grain 0.88 %
      0.30 lb Chocolate Malt (350.0 SRM) Grain 0.88 %
      2.50 oz Chinook [13.00 %] (60 min) Hops 42.5 IBU
      2.00 oz Cascade [5.50 %] (60 min) Hops 14.4 IBU
      2.00 oz Cascade [5.50 %] (15 min) Hops 7.1 IBU
  • for the hop additions, I used a large chunk of my homegrown hop stash (specifically, all my chinooks and cascades).  although in an ideal world a totally homegrown saison would have had dibs on those hops, making a homebrew shop run for a couple commercial ounces of varieties that I already had didn’t make sense.  I also whipped up a healthy two-liter starter of venerable WLP001 for fermentation duties.
  • after mashing in 34 lbs of grain, my mash tun was almost at capacity (I’ve heard of people adding as much as 40 lbs, but I wasn’t feeling particularly adventurous).  I hit my mash temp of 151F and ended up with ten gallons with an O.G. of 1.09.
  • with all that grain in the mash tun, it seemed like a shame to waste any leftover sugars, so I decided to make a small beer using a parti-gyle procedure, which sounds complex but is in fact dead simple.  instead of using a first/second runnings “batch sparge” approach, I further simplified the process by adding 6 gallons of sparge water to my HLT and collecting an additional 6 gallons of wort in a separate kettle after my initial sparge was complete.
  • after hopping the small beer with 1.5 oz of willamette pellets at 60 and 15 min, I ended up with 4.5 gallons with an O.G. of 1.037, and will dry-hop with another couple of ounces in an attempt at a hoppy, low abv brew.
  • during the boil I also managed to keg my pseudo marzen, which ended up at 1.016 for a devilish abv of 6.66%.  after about a week at 65 to carb up, I’m planning on cold crashing the kegs in the mid 30s until some space frees up in the kegerator.



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