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Recipe – Porter


It’s been a while since I’ve written – or brewed. The plumbing was renovated and after that was over it took a while for me to feel like brewing. I’ve been drinking less beer and after moving to the new house it felt like I “lost the routine” somehow, which is not necessarily a bad thing.

This weekend I decided to have a go at it and it was very nice to brew in the  new bathroom with the new electric kettle. I have some new gear, a very accurate temperature probe (thanks to my lovely wife) and a refractometer which really made it easy to get gravity readings and add water to reach the desired original gravity. All in all it was very pleasant to brew after the break.

The beer I decided to make was a black porter. I’ve never really been happy with the porters I’ve brewed – they’ve been ok but not up there with the best commercial examples. I think this is mainly because I’ve used malt bills that have been too simple (I usually feel that a simple malt bill serves the beer best, every grain used has to add something distinct to the end result). So, I used my previous go at the style and added some crystal malt for a bit of sweetness that I felt was lacking and some brown malt for some mellower roast character.  I cut back on the black malt to give some “room” for the less coffee-like flavour of the brown malt. Turned out the malt bill is pretty similar to some of the Fuller’s London Porter clone recipes floating out there and since I like that beer I tweaked the final recipe to include more brown malt and to have  higher gravity than my previous attempts. I also added a bit of East Kent Goldings at 15 minutes, something I have not tried in Porters before. For the yeast, Mangrove Jacks Burton Union, not a perfect choice but that’s what I had in hand.

Here is the recipe:


Target Batch Size (Litres/Gallons): 17.00 / 4,49
Total Grain (Kg/Pounds): 3,55 / 7,82
Anticipated OG: 1.051
Anticipated SRM: 31,1
Anticipated IBU: 28,7
Wort Boil Time: 60 Minutes


76,1%  2,7 kg / 5,95 lbs    Pale Malt, Maris Otter (Thomas Fawcett)
9,9% 0,35 kg / 0,77 lbs Brown Malt (Thomas Fawcett)
7,0% 0,25 kg / 0,55 lbs Pale Crystal Malt (Thomas Fawcett)
5,6 %  0,20 kg / 0,44 lbs    Chocolate Malt (Thomas Fawcett)
1,4 %   0,10 kg / 0,22 lbs    Black Malt (Thomas Fawcett)


13,0g / 0,45 oz. Admiral (Pellet, 13%  AA) @ 60 min for 25  IBU
10,0g / 0,35 oz East Kent Goldings (Pellet. 5% AA) @ 15 min for 3,7 IBU


½ Tablet of Whirlfloc @ 10 Min.
½ Teaspoon of yeast nutrient @ 10 Min.
2g Calcium Chloride in mash


Mangrove Jack’s M79 Burton Union, 1 packet rehydrated


23,09 Litre BIAB @ 66 Celsius for 60 mins (6,09Gal/150F)

28/11/15 Forgot to add the Whirfloc. Very nice cold break despite that (and it’s a dark beer so no worries). Had to add 1,5L of water before cooling to reach the planned OG. The new kettle seems to boil of much more, I need to adjust the numbers. Collected about 18l of wort, cooled to 18C, shook for 2 minutes and added the yeast. New thermometer and refractometer proved to be very handy.

29/11/15 A bit of activity in the morning, the Mangrove Jack yeast takes some time to get going.

7/12/15 Main fermentation seems to be over. Temperature set to 19C to help the yeast finish.

11/12/15 No signs of fermentation. Dropped the temperature to 5C to help the yeast floculate.

13/12/15 Kegged the beer and lifted to the kegerator to carbonate.

Tasting here, a big improvement over the last porter I brewed.


From → Recipes

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