View Full Version : coffee in beer

10-31-2002, 04:53 PM
I plan on brewing the ultimate breakfast beverage-an oatmeal stout with coffee. I am fairly comfortable with my planned recipe, I have spoken to a few brewers, but would like any additional feedback that is available. I am brewing on a 10 BBL system and plan to use 15 lbs of coffee in the entire batch. I have 5 lbs of an organic french roast that I plan to coarsly grind and add to the mash. The final 10 lbs is a Kenyan Grand Cru that will also be coarsly ground and added to the secondary-kinda like dry hopping. I am looking to get some additional roasty-coffeish flavors from the french roast, and primarily aromatics from the Kenyan that will go in the secondary. I would like to hear some comments about my plan from those w/experience brewing w/coffee or those who just know!


M. W. Snyder
11-01-2002, 10:25 PM
Dear feind,

Although I AM NOT IN THE KNOW, I can, or would like to, pass on some info,

Years ago in Athens GA, BLIND MAN BREWING did a GREAT coffee stout. I believe that that they added their French roast in the mash. This would make a bit more sence than the fermentaion vessle. (Extract, not aroma, maybe Im wrong)
But...what the hell do I know???
Just a hint.. Good luck and prehaps you can track these guys down. They folded years ago. They did do contrat brewing with DOGWOOD BREWING in Atlanta, if that help??????????

Make a small batch in a carboy and make a "tea".
I realize this is not the answer you need. But........ any thing is better than nothing.

Cheers and good brewin'

Michael W. Snyder

M. W. Snyder
11-02-2002, 11:52 PM

Having thought about it

(its been over 5 years)

Blind Man used an EXPRESSO coffee not French Roast.


Sorry for the confusion!

11-03-2002, 09:02 PM
When I brewed a coffee porter at my brewpub, I decided to add the coffee post fermentation. The primary reason I did this was because I wanted to avoid the astringent/bitter flavor you get from boiling coffee.

I am at home right now so I donít have my brew sheet in front of me, thus I canít give you the specifics, but what I did was brew several gallons of very strong coffee using an organic Sumatra, and added it to my serving tank. I allowed the coffee to cool in the tank, then added my finished porter to the tank. It came out quite good, and was very popular. I know other breweries add coffee to the mash, and have tasted some that were very good, but I donít know any specifics as to the procedure, so I canít advise you there.

If you can, perhaps you could pilot brew a batch, but if not, just go for it! Try to think out all of the pros and cons of each possible method, choose one, and may good luck be on your side!


11-11-2002, 09:12 AM
You may want to re-consider the amount of coffee you are using and process....

like other posts above I have had the best experience by "infusing" the beer post-ferm. About 4-5 pounds of high quality coffee is usually enough for a 10bbl batch. The type of coffee is important too. French Roast and Espresso can be too harsh, especially when over done. I tend to use something on the mild to medium side along with some kilned coffee malt and choco malt(MFB Kiln if you can still get it) to get the right coffee flavor.

The process I use is steeping the ground coffee in cold water for 24 hours then add filtered coffee to vessel. Within a day or two the flavor will appear. The best thing about doing this post fermentation infusion is you can always add more coffee until the desired product is found. I have not heard of many success stories with mashed coffee, mostly bad ones...Good Luck.

11-11-2002, 02:50 PM
hello fellow brewer .

I have brewed coffee beers a couple different ways,
I have found that the only thing bad about using coffee
in the boil or the mash is oils , this will break down the head on the beer. I have found using cold brewed coffeehas less oils.
also I used more roasted and chocolate malts.
it sounds like cheating and maybe it is .
thats just a couple of things to think about ,

I hope it comes out great.

M. W. Snyder
11-11-2002, 06:10 PM
Hey jmpdeepcreek,

Did you brew this yet, if so, what did you do and tell us how it turns out.

I like the idea of using a less harsh coffee. It was mentioned that using a cold coffee added to post fermentaion. Any worries about infection? And no, I don't think that is considered "cheating". Once you pass a certain boundery, there are no rules, I guess. (is the beer good? Thats what your really want, right??)
Keep in mind, I did say I knew nothing about coffee beers. They always peak interesterest but seem a very hard sale. Those of you that have posted of this coffee beer thing, :How does it sell in your place? Is it looked upon as a navolty, a treat, or does it sell like gangbusters? How does it conpeat with your other brands?
Good luck, jmpdeepcreek. Please, I would like to hear what happenes.

Michael W. Snyder

11-11-2002, 07:38 PM
I make a coffee stout at Copper Canyon Brewery in Detriot.

We have our own hot-air roaster on the premises. The owner used to own coffee shops has a PHD in Chemistry and used to design different coffee styles, so we researched it and came up with the following:

12 Bbl batch= 12 lbs coursely ground coffee
Coffee was freshly roasted to obtain the most aroma, due to the fact that the aroma oils break down very fast after the beans cool.
(never put your beans in the freezer)

We used a Roast in between French and American, Kenya AA, Sumatra and Guatamalan Aromatic green beans.

Then added during the whirlpool loose(no bag)at the end of the w/p(at the beginning of the rest ) to reduce the hot contact time. Keep kettle manway closed.

The other methods never produced the quality, nor the clean flavor expected by a man that owned a large chain of coffe shops.

It does screw with the heat exchanger though. You need to back flush it a lot with hot and cold water to get it to expand and contract to loosen up the grounds that make it in. soak the heat-x with caustic over night.