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Alexander the Blessed Recipe

This Russian imperial stout forms the basis of Neil Fisher’s bourbon-barrel-aged stout.

Neil Fisher 2 years ago

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As a follow up to “Barrel Aging for Homebrewers,” Neil Fisher has shared the recipes for some of the base beers that he uses for barrel aging. Named for Alexander I, Tsar of Russia (1801-1825), this massive imperial stout was designed for barrel aging. The high alcohol aids in extracting the full flavor from the barrel, while the high IBUs help balance the boozy sweetness contributed by the bourbon barrel and high final gravity of the beer. This beer took Gold in the Specialty Category at the Sweetheart’s Revenge 2014 homebrew competition, went on to place third overall Best of Show, and was selected by High Hops Brewery in Windsor, Colorado, as their Pro Am winner.

ALL-GRAIN

Boil size: About 10 gallons (37.8 liters)
End of boil volume: 6.5 gallons (24.6 liters)
Batch size: 6 gallons (22.7 liters)
Efficiency: 65%

OG: 1.105
FG: 1.024
IBUs: 79
ABV: 10.8%

MALT/GRAIN BILL

20 lb (9.72 kg) pale malt, Maris Otter
3 lb (1.4 kg) Munich malt
1¼ lb (567 g) chocolate malt
1¼ lb (567 g) chocolate rye malt
1 lb (454 g) oats, flaked
8 oz (227 g) Crystal 150
8 oz (227 g) roasted barley

HOPS SCHEDULE

2 oz (57 g) Columbus (Tomahawk) at 60 minutes

DIRECTIONS

Mash for 75 minutes at 146°F (63°C). Boil for 90 minutes following the hops schedule.

YEAST

3 packages California Ale (White Labs #WLP001)

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BREWER’S NOTES

Age for 30 days at 65°F (18°C).

In Craft Beer & Brewing’s Wood Aging Your Beer class, you’ll learn how to use wood for its unique flavor contributions, as well as for its ability to host a wide range of souring microorganisms. Sign up today!

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