AK Beer Week is over, and I am thinking we need to have an Alaska Homebrew Week! Drinking homebrew is a great way to enjoy some of the rarest, smallest, most tasty batches of beer in the word. I brew beer, and I feel it is pretty good, but then I taste some of my homebrew club members’ offerings and I am blown away! I am like, “You made this?! WOW! It is so good!” I often learn new tips and tricks to improve my own homebrew in the process. One of my favorite ways to share homebrew is after a bike ride. I’ll bring a few bottles and give all my riding friends a little sample of my most recent creation. This beer depicted in this painting of us riding our fat bikes is a coffee stout. I started calling it “Good to the Last Drop”. It turned out great, which is why I shared it with my friends. Sometimes I will get a questionable brew, and I will simply drink it at home, and normally it is better than your average crappy domestic beer. When I brewed this coffee stout, I was attempting to clone a version of Stone Brewing’s Americano Stout, a 9% coffee-infused brew. Mine turned out a bit weaker at 7.5%, but the coffee which I procured from K-Bay roasters just shined through. The secret to my stouts is the specialty malt from Weyermann, a malting company from Bamberg, Germany. I will give you the recipe for a 5 gallon batch of GTTLD Coffee Stout at the bottom of this blog post.
But first, a bit about fat biking! We just got seven inches of new snow, which to some is good news! Skiers and fat-bikers are glowing about this recent weather change. All beer week it was icy and getting a little dingy around the city. The snow helps reflect the light and also cleaned up the whole city. Driving is a disaster, but fat-biking is a joy! On ice, studded skinny tires are faster and more efficient, although a little more squirrelly. When there is snow on top of ice skinny tires are a dangerous proposition. You need the stability of the fat tire (with studs) to ensure a safe ride. On a fat bike it’s fun plowing through snowbanks and ripping around corners. Not to mention the fat-tire-only trails! And what better way to end a session on Anchorage’s unique single tracks, than popping the top on a delicious homebrew?!
Good to the Last Drop Coffee Stout Recipe
by Scott Clendaniel
5 gallons Anchorage Water (similar to Munich, Germany)
1056 American Ale yeast
12 lbs Maris Otter (or 7lbs malt extract)
1 lb Weyermann Bamberg type 3 malt (you can use Chocolate malt if you can’t get the imported grain)
1 lb Weyermann Bamberg type 4 malt (you can use Black Patent malt if you can’t get the imported grain)
1 oz Willamette hops (or you can substitute in any noble hop)
3/4 lbs La Amistead single source K-bay Coffee coarsely ground.
So I mash all the grains at 150 degrees for 75 minutes (or you can mini mash the dark grains for 30 minutes if using malt extract)
Boil 90 minutes, after 30 minutes add 1/2 oz Willamette hops
After 85 minutes add the other 1/2 oz Willamette hops
Cool to 65 degrees, pitch yeast, and ferment for a week, then rack to secondary
After the fermentation is complete add the coffee direct to secondary into the carboy
Wait four more days, then cold crash for 24 hours to drop all sediment and coffee to the bottom
Bottle condition, or keg. I prefer bottles as a 5 gallon keg of coffee stout is a bit much.
Cheers, and happy brewing and biking!
This original oil painting, and 52 limited-edition prints are available at our Etsy shop RealArtIsBetter.