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Brews & Views Bulletin Board Service * Brews and Views Archive 2010 * Archive through March 09, 2010 * Bourbon beer < Previous Next >

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The Jolly Brewer
Senior Member
Username: Matfink

Post Number: 2269
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 92.235.152.60
Posted on Tuesday, February 02, 2010 - 08:57 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I've thought about this before, but never really seriously. But I'm getting into my bourbon at the moment so maybe i'm entertaining the idea a little more now.

Not having a still or the expertise to make a spirit, how about replicating the mash of a bourbon as a beer with a small amount of hops to balance, say 15ibus. Then soaking some charred oak in vodka for a period of time and adding that to the finished beer before bottling to give some of the vanilla, oaky, smokey tones of a bourbon to the beer?

This is apparantly the makers mark grist.I found this on the net, not sure where.

his is the grain bill for Maker's Mark "red wax seal" whisky (the founder of the distillery insisted on the Scottish spelling, instead of the Irish "whiskey):
70% corn
14% wheat
16% 6-row barley malt.
Mash in the 150 to 155F range for 90 minutes

I guess you could use rye instead of wheat.

Being in England I can't get 6 row so I'd have to use lager or pilsner malt and maybe some added enzyme to dry it out. For ease I'd use flaked corn and wheat/rye.

Aim for about 8-9% ABV

what do you think? A mad idea?
 

Chumley
Senior Member
Username: Chumley

Post Number: 6040
Registered: 02-2003
Posted From: 63.118.227.254
Posted on Wednesday, February 03, 2010 - 04:40 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

That sounds like a lot of work. Why don't you just do as His Dennyness does, and mix a little bourbon in with your finished beer?
 

Doug Pescatore
Senior Member
Username: Doug_p

Post Number: 2221
Registered: 10-2002
Posted From: 141.232.1.1
Posted on Wednesday, February 03, 2010 - 05:19 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I made a big bad old something or other beer (closer to an over hopped big dark belgian but fermented with Nottingham) a few years ago. It got down to 1.003. I forgot where it started but the alcohol content came out to 13.75%. I did a long secondary with charred oak (charred to he point where it was charcoal) and then added oak extract to it before bottling.

1 year later the beer was still very hot and it was hard to get past the alcohol burn.

2 years later and it was still harsh but coming back to earth.

3 years later still too harsh for normal drinking but the edge was coming off. It was at that point where a friend remarked to it reminded him of whiskey.

5.5 years later we tapped the mini-keg of this stuff (the bottles had been slowly consumed) and it was finally very smooth. Very drinkable. It had taken on some sweet character as the heat smoothed out and once again a friend said that it reminded him of a sweeter whiskey with some chewy body. We drank it over a two day period while fishing in the Bahamas but never finished it because one glass would be enough to keep you going for a good while.

My point is that I believe the time is what made this beer take on that whiskey like flavor. I may try to reproduce this beer again one day but let the entire batch sit for 5 years before starting to consume it.

Doug
 

Tex Brewer
Advanced Member
Username: Texbrewer

Post Number: 538
Registered: 03-2004
Posted From: 216.203.59.252
Posted on Wednesday, February 03, 2010 - 10:51 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

JB, I think it's a great idea, go for it. Doug's experience is quite interesting, and not surprising for such a high alcohol brew of this nature. But at 8-9%, I wouldn't expect you would need 5 years of ageing. I have added untoasted and toasted oak cubes (use cubes, not chips) to various brews and had nice results for the most part. I've also done it with wine. Since the oak is a big part of such a beverage, and since there isn't much else going on for flavor, I'd be liberal with them, and use mainly toasted. I'd also soak them in bourbon, not vodka--why not? And dump the whole works in. After it has aged a few weeks, sampling periodically, decide whether to add more toasted and/or untoasted oak based on the flavor. The cubes/chips will be fully extracted fairly quickly.
 

Colin Brietzke
Junior Member
Username: Colin

Post Number: 49
Registered: 04-2009
Posted From: 67.175.200.255
Posted on Wednesday, February 03, 2010 - 11:18 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I am just starting to enjoy this beer after brewing it about 3 months ago.

http://legacy.northernbrewer.com/docs/kis-html/1603.html

I initially wanted to do a rip-off of Goose Island's Bourbon County Stout, but didn't want to wait for 6-12 months before drinking it. I am delighted with this beer and advocate leaving the chips in there for 1.5-2 months. Maybe mash for a bit more dextrin to balance out the thinning effect of the extra alcohol.
 

The Jolly Brewer
Senior Member
Username: Matfink

Post Number: 2270
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 80.229.42.172
Posted on Thursday, February 04, 2010 - 02:44 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Thanks Colin, that's interesting. So you add a pint of bourbon to five gallons right? So it would bump up the ABV by about 1.2 points?

Thanks for the pointers on using oak Doug/Tex, and why not use bourbon instead of vodka?
 

Bill Pierce
Moderator
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 11237
Registered: 01-2002
Posted From: 24.141.103.148
Posted on Thursday, February 04, 2010 - 03:19 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Actually, adding 1 US pint of 40 percent alcohol bourbon to 5 gallons of 7 percent ABV beer will raise the alcohol content to 7.8 percent.
 

The Jolly Brewer
Senior Member
Username: Matfink

Post Number: 2271
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 80.229.42.172
Posted on Thursday, February 04, 2010 - 04:37 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

thanks Bill. Not a lot then in the grand scheme of things.
 

Colin Brietzke
Junior Member
Username: Colin

Post Number: 50
Registered: 04-2009
Posted From: 67.175.200.255
Posted on Thursday, February 04, 2010 - 11:25 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Jolly...

Yep, just dump it in there along with priming sugar.

The overall taste is surprisingly nuanced. The oakiness now has vanilla undertones which have only developed recently. The Bourbon is subtle and already seems to have married well with the malt and the oak/vanilla.

Originally, I remember thinking that the mash temp favored a fermentable beer too much so I adjusted. Still, it needed a bit more body, so make considerable adjustments to the mash temp. Not bad, but it is closer to a brown ale than a porter.