Our last year’s porter is back, …but in a slightly modified version
As always, you start with an idea, brew your beer and evaluate. If you do it again, you usually remember all basic features, but not the whole thing. Luckily I have kept this time two bottles of last year’s batch and the samples were a good guidance and reminder of how to brew this year’s version. Not that I keep on changing beers for the fun of doing so, but sometimes certain flavor components don’t come out as they were intended to.
So…after sampling the previous batch I did remember, that at least for my taste it could have been slightly more malty/sweet, chocolaty and less roasty.
All other basic features were just fine. The basic idea for that particular brew was based on doing a beer, which has all the features of a tasty porter without being pitch-black
It should have:
- a malty body without being too full-bodied
- a dark, slightly reddish colour, definitely an almost- see-through
- aromas of malt, smoke, chocolate, some coffee and hints of hops
- flavours of malt, dark chocolate, smoke and a subtle background bitterness
- a creamy head, although light in CO2
- a smooth finish
- alcohol content of 5,5%,
The malt body of the 2013 version was big enough, but the quantity/quality of the roasted/toasted malts quite obstrusive. They made the beer drier than it actually was. In the beginning it even reminded me of Stout. Smokiness was good, though. The chocolate aroma/flavor could have been more pronounced without being overpowering. A little extra hop aroma would have been good
So I changed the ratio of the dark malts towards varieties lighter in color, but increased their amounts slightly. A toasted malt was exchanged for a slightly maltier version and I added some extra EKG to the mix. OG/FG/ABV stayed basically the same.
Was it all worth it? …probably yes 🙂 . I really have to take a proper look at it. Usually you try your beers and look for things that shouldn’t be there,…especially when you know, that your beer is in the glass. It doesn’t make it too easy to determine the first impression and overall drinking experience.
I have used a lot of different malts for that particular brew, and more is not always better! Every malt type should have a purpose and I am still learning how to blend them right. Will never end, I guess. You normally end up sitting in front of your recipes, asking yourself, if they all make sense. Too much of the same kind can mess up your beer quite a bit. Same goes for hops.
After all, it is not about being good or bad (not your call anyway), it is all about improving yourself (your call).
And last but not least, rather have two small servings than a big one. I would recommend our 0,3l tasting glass! The beer warms up much faster, foam quality is better and you get the maximum of aromas and flavours.