Making Stout General Guide

HBO_StaffHBO_Staff Administrator Posts: 2,115
This article will take you through the different types of Stout to make along with basic ingredients. Visit our shop for all ingredients.

Stout is now a wonderfully varied drink with many different breweries offering their own individual take and the great thing is it’s easy to make at home too using kits and grain. When brewing from grain it can be especially forgiving of any brew day mistakes. For example my mash temperature once got way too high (over 80 °C ) after I got distracted doing something else. However it didn't effect the final product at all and I got lots of compliments from friends saying it was the best one I’d ever done!

There are a few different stouts you can make; English, Irish, American, Imperial and milk. Within these variations are further sub categories such as chocolate stout and coffee stout. It’s a great beer to make as you can really get creative with it!

English: Sweeter than Irish stout but with a similar roasted after taste. The roasted flavour is balanced with a subtle sweetness and light hoppy flavour and aroma. The mouthfeel is moderate and can be surprisingly light at times.

Ingredients: Maris Otter or similar base malt, medium to dark crystal malt, roasted barley, black or chocolate malt and flaked barley. Hop at 30 to 35 IBU using Fuggles or similar and ferment with SafAle S-04.

Irish: Dryer than the English Stout and most famously characterised by Guinness. Very low carbonation and low hops with a hint of chocolate or toffee at times. Has a creamy mouthfeel especially when served with nitrogen.

Ingredients: The basic recipe is pale malt, roasted barley and flaked barley. Some add in other grains such as caramel and chocolate malt. You can use East Kent Goldings or Williamette. The IBU range is 25 to 45. Ferment with Danstar Nottingham yeast.

American: Again based on the integral building block of roasted barley it is of a brown or black colour. The main difference is the hops! American Stout is highly hopped.

Ingredients: Use American hops, aim for between 35 and 75 IBUs. Chinook, Northern Brewer and Simcoe are good adding a pine aroma and flavour rather than a strong citrus or tropical flavour. Use crystal, black, and chocolate malt together with a base malt. Of course use the essential building block of roasted barley. Ferment with a neutral yeast like Mangrove Jack’s US West Coast M44

Imperial Stout: This has good body and a complex variety of aromas and flavours that include a rich maltiness in conjunction with a roasted aroma and flavour.

Ingredients: Up to 20% of the recipe is dark malt. Use Maris Otter as a base and a variety of darker malts including roasted barley, chocolate, biscuit, caramalt and dark crystal malt. Use flaked oats for smoothness and increased mouth feel. Use a lower amount of hops to allow the complex flavours of the malt to come through. Cascade (US), Challenger (UK), Centennial and Chinook can be used. The IBU range is 50 to 90. Ferment with Fermentis US-05.

Milk Stout: Sweeter in style than the other stouts this is a firm favourite for those who prefer a less bitter stout. It’s sweet but not over powering.

Ingredients: The sweetness comes from a small addition of lactose and less dark malts. Hold back on using roasted barley to avoid the sharp bitterness it adds and instead include carafa as a substitute. Also add chocolate malt for more complexity. Again you don’t need to use a lot of hops and Fuggles is a great hop to use for this style. The IBU range is 15 to 25. Use a neutral yeast again such as the S-04. Add the lactose with five minutes left to go on the boil, turn the heat off and stir until it is dissolved and then finish off the boil.

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