Friday, October 15, 2021

Designing Caliente Fuerte Mexican Stout

It has been awhile, but in Updating the Colorado 6 Pack, I mentioned that I was updating my Homebrew Colorado 6 pack, replacing 3 beers that no longer exist.

The first replacement was T.Ra.Sh. Light Mexican Lager vs Ska Mexican Logger. That really turned out well.

Next up ... I want to try to make a beer inspired by another one of my local favorites ... Copper Kettle Mexican Chocolate Stout.

"Dynamic stout with cinnamon, local organic chocolate, and habanero, ancho and guajilo peppers!"

I sat down with one of these beers on my patio a couple weeks ago to think about how I would design a tribute to this beer.

We know from the website and/or the can of beer, that Mexican Chocolate Stout is 7% ABV and 50 IBU and contains Cacao nibs. Cassie cinnamon. Dried chili peppers.

Our eyes tell us it is a very dark black beer with a fluffy tan head.

The aroma was mostly chocolate with maybe a hint of cinnamon. 

It has a rich chocolatey flavor with a full body. It wasn't overly roasty or coffee like.

There was a subtle heat from the peppers / cinnamon. To me, the cinnamon flavor came through more than the pepper flavor.

So ... in designing the beer, I targeted 7% ABV with 50 IBU.

To add to the rich chocolate flavor, I decided to go with cocoa powder rather than nibs. Cocoa powder is easier to find and in my experience adds more chocolate to the aroma and flavor. Based on my experience with Bluefield Chocolate Ale, I thought about half a pound of cocoa powder would be about right.

I decided that I'd also add in half a pound of lactose. Mostly because that is how much I have right now. I might have decided to leave it out if I didn't actually have any.

The malt bill was mostly standard American two row pale malt.

I added in English Medium and Dark Crystal malt and a little Roasted Barley. Most of the color comes from Midnight Wheat to cut down on the roasty / coffee flavors.

For the yeast, I went with Irish Ale Yeast ... mostly because I have some harvested, but I also think it will work well in this style of beer.

For spicing, I went with a little Ancho Chile Powder and a little Cayenne Chile Powder along with a couple of cinnamon sticks.

We'll see how it turns out. Hopefully I'll like my beer as much as I like Copper Kettle Mexican Chocolate Stout.

I don't have the beer recipe on the website, yet ... but it will likely look like the recipe below.

Stay tuned on Sheppy's Blog: Caliente Fuerte to see how it turns out.

Caliente Fuerte Mexican Stout

Style American Stout Batch Size 5.50 gal
Type All Grain Boil Size   7.71 gal
Brewhouse Efficiency   70.00   Boil Time   60 minutes

Recipe Characteristics

Recipe Gravity 1.070 SG Estimated FG 1.017 SG
Recipe Bitterness 45.3 IBUs (Rager) Alcohol by Volume 7.0 %
BU : GU   0.648        
Recipe Color 37.0 SRM
Measured OG:       Measured FG:    
ADF:       Measured ABV:    


Amt Name Type # %/IBU Volume
9.48 gal Denver, Colorado Water 1 - -
5.00 g Calcium Chloride (Mash) Water Agent 2 - -
2.00 g Epsom Salt (MgSO4) (Mash) Water Agent 3 - -
11 lbs Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM) Grain 4 72.1 % 0.86 gal
1 lbs 8.0 oz Munich Malt - 20L (20.0 SRM) Grain 5 9.8 % 0.12 gal
12.0 oz Midnight Wheat Malt (550.0 SRM) Grain 6 4.9 % 0.06 gal
8.0 oz Crystal Dark - 77L (Crisp) (75.0 SRM) Grain 7 3.3 % 0.04 gal
8.0 oz Crystal, Medium (Simpsons) (55.0 SRM) Grain 8 3.3 % 0.04 gal
8.0 oz Roasted Barley (300.0 SRM) Grain 9 3.3 % 0.04 gal
1.000 oz Magnum [10.90 %] - First Wort 60.0 min Hop 10 45.3 IBUs -
0.50 lb Cocoa Powder (unsweetened) (Primary) Flavor 11 - -
8.0 oz Milk Sugar (Lactose) [Boil] (0.0 SRM) Sugar 12 3.3 % 0.04 gal
1.0 pkg Irish Ale Yeast (White Labs #WLP004) Yeast 13 - -
1.00 tsp Ancho Chile Powder (Primary 5.0 mins) Spice 14 - -
1.00 tsp Cayenne Chile Powder (Primary 5.0 mins) Spice 15 - -
2.00 Items Cinnamon Stick (Bottling 1.0 days) Spice 16 - -

Mash Profile

Mash Steps
Name Description Step Temperature Step Time
Mash In Add 18.44 qt of water at 163.7 F 152.0 F 60 min

Batch sparge with 2 steps (Drain mash tun , 4.87gal) of 168.0 F water

Recipe Notes
Make 6 cup starter a couple days before brew day.
Brewing salts in the mash water. This should bring Denver water profile (as defined by BeerSmith) to
Mash and boil as instructed.
Chill as close to 60 degrees as possible.
Add cocoa and spices into primary fermenation.
Keep fermentation cold until signs of fermentation start. Then let go to ambient temperature.
Add to keg with Cinnamon Sticks.

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