Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Homebrewing: Honey Porter

It's about time for another write-up about my homebrewing trails and tribulations This time we'll focus on my second effort, a honey porter that I brewed a few months ago. I'm not going to get into every little detail of the process. If you're interested in that you can refer to my previous homebrewing post as the same basic rules still apply. Today, I'm going to go over the ingredients and how they should be treated. After that I'll get into the good part.....taste.

  • 6 lbs. of Dark Malt Extract
  • 2 lbs. of Minnesota Clover Honey
  • 8 oz of Carapils Specialty Grains
  • 8 oz of Chocolate Malt Specialty Grains
  • 1 oz of Kent Golding bittering hops
  • 1 oz Cascade Hops
  • Premium Dry Yeast
Basic Instructions:
  1. Steep crushed specialty grains for 30 minutes at 155 Degrees
  2. Turn off the heat and add in Malt Extract. Bring it to a boil
  3. Add the Golding hops for 60 minutes
  4. At the 30 minute mark of the boil, add the honey
  5. Last 5 minutes of the boil, add in the Cascade hops
  6. Cool down, add yeast.

Taste and Appearance:

The color is nice dark brown and it pours a creamy head that measures about 2 fingers. For a porter it is surprisingly light and easy to drink. I normally reserve cooler weather to do my porter drinking, but I've had no problem mixing this in throughout the summer. The most prominent flavor is easily the honey. Initially, the sweetness is very subtle and it's not until the finish that the full honey flavor really shines through. At times, this beer has tasted a bit alcoholy, but really that's my only complaint. It could be that I've just been my own worst critic because the overall feedback I've gotten about this beer has been overwhelmingly positive.

Lessons Learned:

Unlike my first brew, I didn't make any glaring mistakes that I felt needed correcting. As I get my feet wet in the world of homebrewing, I'm just trying to add a skill or component to my repertoire a brew at a time. The only thing I'd really like to change if I decided to brew this recipe (or any recipe) again would be adding a yeast starter instead of just using the dry stuff. With that said, if you're a new brewer and a fan of porters this is definitely worth a shot.

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