Stout fit for a Czar - Russian Imperial Stout!  Brendan's Smoked Habanero Imperial Stout

Stout fit for a Czar - Russian Imperial Stout! Brendan's Smoked Habanero Imperial Stout

Dermott DowlingJun 5, '15
As the mercury falls and we reach for the polar fleece, hoodies, beanies and mittens we also should be reaching for a well aged and matured Russian Imperial Stout.  I recently had the pleasure of a couple of pleasant local craft versions of this great beer style during #GoodBeerWeek2015.  The first was a pot of 3 Ravens little raven special release Russian Imperial Stout @theCatfish in Fitzroy after Session #1 @GABSFestival 2015 and it stood out so strongly after many sours as an exemplary example of a fine style with rich roasted coffee and toffee notes and a warmth that made it dangerously drinkable :-).  Followed up shortly thereafter was another finely brewed example the 2014 Ramjet from Boatroacker aged in Starward Whisky barrels enjoyed at Palate Cleanser as a lovely end to a great week and afternoon on the sours.  Given a good friend and great brewer of sours and imperial stouts was at the event Mr Brendan O'Sullivan of 3 Ravens & Grain&Grape fame and someone who is always willing to share tips and recipes to help homebrewers brew better - see one of my very first recipe posts here DICK's Foreign Extra Dry Irish Coffee Stout which was greatly helped by Brendan @Grain&Grape on a busy Saturday with tips from a #hometopro brewer given with good grace patience and a smile as always, many moons ago. Thought it was appropriate to hit Brendan up not for a sour recipe although he does do a very mean Berliner Weiss - maybe on coming soon to a future Flyday BeerCoAu Beer of Week recipe, but for an Imperial Stout Home brew recipe fit for Czar! So here goes, and thanks again to @Crowbz for sharing your tips on how to brew very big and bold beers with style :-)  Below is a recipe Brendan brewed for a home-brew competition featuring a surprise ingredient (Iron Chef style) - which turned out to be Chillies. Target OG: 1.100 Target IBU: 80 Target Colour: 55 SRM

Gladfield Malt Grain Bill

(Editors notes - I have taken some liberty here to do some conversion to Gladfield Malt)

Hops:

40g Simcoe 60 mins (55 IBU) 40g Columbus 10 mins (23 IBU) 40g Centennial 0 mins 40g Simcoe 0 mins

Yeast:

3 x 125ml smack packs of Wyeast 1728 (Scottish Ale)

Mash & Boil:

  • 6.5g chalk (mash)
  • Mashed at 65C for 60 mins, sparged at 80C
  • 1g gypsum (kettle)
  • 1g calcium chloride (kettle)
  • 90 minute boil

Other:

Approx 3 Habaneros (flame roasted, de-seeded, de-veined and added at start, mid and end boil) 5g Amchur (green mango powder) 60 mins 2 lemons (zest only), 30cm stick of lemon scented verbena and 1 mesquite smoked Rocoto Chilli steeped in Maker's Mark Bourbon and Angostura Bitters then added to the kettle 15 mins before flameout A shot of Laphroaig at flameout - that's brewing with style right there!  Brew happy :-)

Post Fermentation!

Brendan's finishing touch was a Rye Whisky tincture of the remaining 6 habaneros (flame roasted, de-seeded, de-veined) as well as about 20g of cacao and a vanilla pod (added post-fermentation). Sources and References:  Brendan O'Sullivan, https://www.facebook.com/grainandgrape/posts/786979877981706  Iron Brewer System Wars Competition, 2014 @Grain&Grape, Yarraville, Victoria.

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