As the new year continues in a similar vain as the last one ended, the dark, damp days continue. It’s this type of weather that makes me want to tuck into a hearty, full bodied stout. Oatmeal stouts are my favourite sub set of the style. Rich, thick and dark, they can take some beating in the cold windy nights of Yorkshire! I also love a nice hit of coffee in a stout, so for me these two go hand in hand! I n the same breath, I have had some that have been a bit too alcoholic, a bit too roast, and a bit too sweet for my tastes. Ok, they do fall on the ‘sweeter’ side of stout but I like my oatmeal stout somewhere in the middle!
This is going to be just a 1 corni keg sized batch as I want to tweak the recipe to where I want it. In essence this is OCS 1.0. Further tweaks could involve toasting the oats, a different coffee blend or yeast choice. For this version I am going with untested flaked oats, Taylors of Harrogate Espresso Blend coffee (Keeping it Yorkshire 😉 ) and good old S04.
Taylor’s of Harrogate Espresso Blend
“Our Espresso combines Brazilian coffee for balance, Indonesian for chocolate, Kenyan for sweetness and Ethiopian for a strong burst of flavour that’s followed by a smooth lingering finish.”
20L post boil
|UK Pale Ale Malt||2.911 kg||70.0 %||3.3||In Mash/Steeped|
|UK Flaked Oats||0.416 kg||10.0 %||0.5||In Mash/Steeped|
|UK Light Crystal||0.333 kg||8.0 %||5.4||In Mash/Steeped|
|UK Pale Chocolate Malt||0.208 kg||5.0 %||15.8||In Mash/Steeped|
|UK Roasted Barley||0.166 kg||4.0 %||40.4||In Mash/Steeped|
|German Carafa Special III||0.125 kg||3.0 %||24.8||In Mash/Steeped|
|US Magnum||16.0 %||13 g||30.2||Loose Whole Hops||60 Min From End|
|Coffee, Ground||45 g||In Boil|
I wanted a good amount of oats in this to help create the great silky mouthfeel I like in an oatmeal stout. Mashing high will also help to create some un-fermentable long chain sugars, keeping the body up in a relatively low ABV beer. I went for light crystal to keep away from the dark stone fruit character you can get with darker crystal malts. I just am not a fan of these in a stout. The pale chocolate is another great malt that will help develop the roasted character of the beer without going as far as a dry or US style stout.
US magnum to bitter with no other hop additions. In this beer they just aren’t the focus.
As for the coffee addition. I was really happy with the coffee extraction and flavour profile from my previous attempt at a coffee stout back in 2012, so the plan is the same, coffee in at flame out as if it were an aroma steep.
For the salt additions I wanted to boost the CaCl2 to aid in the malt perception of the beer, as well as add some Epsom salts for magnesium to aid as a nutrient for the yeast.
All in all a pretty chilled session. I was a tad over on volume and OG at 22L and a whisker over on gravity @ 1.046.
Set at 19oC in the fermentation chamber, with SafO4 on the job it shouldn’t take long to turn around.
Very happy with the way this beer came out. It was pretty much exactly what I wanted out of it. Smooth coffee flavour backing up a chocolate/slightly roast/toasty malt profile. The reduced coffee addition and IBUs has worked better than in my previous effort, which I thought lent too much bitterness and over poured the malt. Not this time! I think its working in harmony.