Sunday, January 22, 2012

Russian Imperial Stout

Yesterday I brewed my second batch of beer. This is Russian Imperial Stout kit from The Beverage People. The people at the Beverage People were very helpful. I told them I would be traveling to Bangladesh and that the kit would set in a container for three months so they traded out the liquid yeast (it would go bad) for a dried yeast. The dried yeast was designed for wine but they recommended it because of the high alcohol content of the beer. This is going to make a beer similar to an Old Rasputan from North Coast brewing. Dark, complex and a big punch. The brewing went without a hitch this time. The foam of this beer is lush and has a great color. Check out this pic:

I was able to cool the wort down quicker this time after trying some new techniques. This time I set the wort in a chilled bath and ran water through the wort chiller. I also periodically stirred the wort as gently as possible so as not to introduce any oxygen while it was still hot. It took about 30 minutes to get 25 quarts of wort from boiling to 75 degrees. Not too bad.

Then I transferred the wort to the primary fermenter, pulling a little bit out to test the specific gravity (and taste it...hehe). It was at 1.095! To explain what this means, the specific gravity is comparing the specific gravity of the wort to that of water. The higher the number, the more sugar in the wort. The 1.095 converts to a final alcohol content of about 13%. This happens as the yeast converts the sugars into alcohol over the next few weeks. Yeast is so cool!

There is already a good deal of action in the carboy as you can see from the pics I took today. I am super excited about this batch and I hope I am not building it up too much. Luckily I still have some of the first batch to sip on while I watch the yeast work its magic.


  1. Niiice, I'll be flying in to assist you in enjoying this tasty beverage.

  2. Cool! In my Biology class, we just did an experiment on fermentation rates when learning about how pyruvate turn into ethyl alcohol... I thought of you!