Homebrewing can take up a lot of time. That time has to come from somewhere. So brewers need to keep their significant others happy to keep brewing. Thankfully I have been able to do that by making a beer. I started making this vanilla stout when I still brewed with extract. This beer has grown with me as I moved to brewing with all grain, albeit with a few changes (much to my wife’s chagrin).
Recipe Specifications -------------------------- Boil Size: 7.10 gal Post Boil Volume: 5.20 gal Batch Size (fermenter): 5.00 gal Bottling Volume: 5.00 gal Estimated OG: 1.055 SG Estimated Color: 31.0 SRM Estimated IBU: 30.2 IBUs Brewhouse Efficiency: 85.00 % Est Mash Efficiency: 85.0 % Boil Time: 60 Minutes Ingredients: ------------ Amt Name %/IBU 8 lbs Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM) 86.5 % 12.0 oz Roasted Barley (300.0 SRM) 8.1 % 8.0 oz Chocolate Malt (350.0 SRM) 5.4 % 0.75 oz Cluster [7.00 %] - Boil 60.0 min 25.4 IBUs 0.75 oz Goldings, East Kent [4.00 %] - Boil 20.0 min 4.9 IBUs 1.0 pkg Irish Ale (Wyeast Labs #1084) 1.5 tbsp Vanilla Extract (At packaging) Mash Schedule: Single Infusion, Full Body, Electric Total Grain Weight: 9 lbs 4.0 oz ---------------------------- Name Description Step Temp Step Time Mash In Add 4.19 gal of water at 162.2 F 154.0 F 60 min Mash Out Heat to 168.0 F over 2 min 168.0 F 10 min Sparge: Fly sparge with 4.74 gal water at 168.0 F
One of the biggest changes over the years has been the vanilla extract. I’ve used less and less as the years go by. Dialing it back has allowed this to be a great beer with vanilla rather than a vanilla extract delivery system. I used to move the beer to secondary to do the extract as well. Nothing wrong with that approach, but adding it at packaging just simplifies things and its one less vessel that needs cleaning.
I’ve also been experimenting with a coffee version of this beer. Lately I’ve been making 10 gallon batches of this and splitting it to make 5 gallons with coffee. Early returns are promising using whole coffee beans, but I’ll have more on that later. The coffee really seems to take this beer to another level.
The vanilla stout has earned itself a permanent tap on my keezer. When I mess up my brew scheduling and it disappears for awhile I have to answer for that. Making 10 gallon batches certainly helps keep me out of trouble! It is my wife’s go-to beer for a good day and a bad day. Perhaps I should call this beer “Peacemaker.”