Recipe courtesy of Eric Hanson

Blackstrap Porter

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 5 hr 23 min
  • Active: 20 min
  • Yield: 5 gallons



  1. Measure out all grains using a scale. Run the grain through a mill to crack the husk and release the starch; a supplier can do this. In a 6 to 10 gallon boiling pot, with screen in bottom, also known as a false bottom, add the gypsum to 2 1/2 gallons of water preheated to 168 degrees F. Pour crushed grains and wheat into the water and stir until mixed thoroughly. Cover the pot and let stand for about one hour periodically checking the to be sure it stays between 146 to 152 degrees F.
  2. Have available another 6 to 10 gallon pot of water heated to 180 to 190 degrees F also on the stove, about 7 gallons worth.
  3. Remove grain pots' cover, sparging [spraying], and gently sprinkle the hot water over the grain mixture until you get 2 to 3 inches of water on top of the mixture. Then attach a flexible tube to the outflow of the grain pot (masher) and turn the spigot on. This opens a valve that allows drainage of the sweet liquid (wort) from the bottom. Keep a steady stream of hot water sprinkling over the mixture while allowing a third pot to be filled with the drainage (this takes about 20 minutes).
  4. Once you have collected about 6 1/2 gallons close the spigot and stop the sprinkling then place this pot on the stove. Bring to a boil (this takes about 25 to 30 minutes). Once brought to a boiling, start a timer, add the molasses, and boil for a total of 15 minutes without any hops.
  5. At 15 minutes add 2/3 ounce of Cascade hops; for bittering, continue to boil. After an additional 30 minutes add 1 ounce Fuggles hops; for flavor, continue to boil. After an additional 15 minutes add 1/2 ounce Cascade, 1/3 ounce Fuggles and 1/3 ounce Kent Goldings hops; also for flavor, continue to boil. Also add copper chilling coil to the boil at this time to sterilize it (standard home brewing equipment). After an additional 15 minutes add 1/2 ounce of Kent Goldings and 1/3 ounce of Fuggles hops; for aroma, and stir for a few seconds then switch off the heat.
  6. Remove the pot containing the wort to the sink, attach a plastic tube to the faucet and another to the outflow of the copper coil, and run cold water through the coil immersed in the wort. This will cool down the wort in about 20 minutes to fermentation temperature, approximately 75 degrees F. You could chill the wort by placing it in an ice bath but this would take much longer.
  7. Next, the wort is transferred into a sterilized fermenter. Shake the container to add air to the wort. Finally, the yeast is added to the fermenter, and an airlock is attached.