My First All-Grain Imperial Stout

The beauty of an oily and viscous wort coming out of the mash-tun and into the brew kettle was awe-inspiring. I have brewed 2 previous stouts. Those two were 8 & 9.5% ABV but were from extract. One was a standard extract of light malts with some steeped barley and grain which gave it the dark appearance. I added toasted oak chips and chocolate and it was terrible. Over 4-5 months, it balanced out pretty well and I’m drinking it now. It’s okay but not great. The second was an extract from midwest that was 2 gallons of extract with some basic hop additions. No steeped grains and I let that condition for 3 months and added 32 ounces of coffee to the 5 gallon keg. It’s drinking great right now and I’m enjoying it a lot. Still, it’s not the quality I would expect which is why i wanted to do an all-grain batch.

Here’s the base recipe.

21lb13oz Domestic 2-Row barley, 14.5oz Chocolate Malt, 4.8 oz. Caramel 120°L, 14.5 oz. Roasted Barley, 3 ounce Northern brewer and 1 ounce williamette hops.

It was in the mash tun for 4 hours mostly because the target temp was 156/154 F for the first 2 hours and 152 was the target mash temperature. The sparge took an additional 90 minutes. This was a very big beer and to get “clear wort” out of the mash tube took a lot of water to get there.

Then, bringing that back up to boiling for 60 minutes and doing a full 5-gallon boil and then cooling that to a pitching temperature…well, it was a VERY long day off from work.

We’ll see how this one turns out but I really enjoyed doing the stout and my OG was a bit higher than estimated as I added in a bit of maple syrup at the end. Adding this to BeerSmith and I hit the OG right on which was surprising given my previous efficiency misses. I discovered this is due to poorly crushed grains on the part of Midwest Supplies which I’ll simply not order from them next time and start researching my own grain mill.

My First All-Grain Imperial Stout

My First All-Grain Imperial Stout

My First All-Grain Imperial Stout

My First All-Grain Imperial Stout