StillDragon® Community Forum


Be part of our community & join our international next generation forum now!

In this Discussion

Stout Whisky

edited August 2020 in Recipes

So following on from the Rasputin Whisky I did out of Bells book I am planning on using a stout mash bill but leaving out the hops as I thought the whisky tasted really good and want to try it without the hops.

Based on the mash bill from the book that I used last time I was thinking something like...

Chevallier Ale  - 83%
Dark Crystal    -  8%
Light Chocolate -  4%
Dark Chocolate  -  4%
Black Patent    -  2%

I would love to hear if anyone has any suggestions for a good stout mash bill (most of the ones on Google are for beers so contain added sugars which I don't want to do for a whisky), especially any yeast recommendations.


  • Think about some roast barley & oats

    Re yeast, us05 will work but edinburgh ale or irish ale would be better if using beer yeast

  • The Irish yeast sounds interesting. I had been starting to think about an ESB, the key seems to be a mainly neutral yeast with hints of fruitiness.

    With the roast barley and oats do you think 5% each would be reasonable?

  • @sam I would go heavy on the Oats but my last Irish was like that. My gardner came over last week and tried my Irish whiskey that has 10 % oats, I took the whiskey straight from the barrel. He put this thing in his mouth and was was tasting it and said, in Spanish. You know this stuff has a really nice thing happening in your mouth. Its really nice and smooth. He was describing mouth feel in busted Argentine Spanish.

  • edited September 2020

    @Sam Black Patent is essentially roast malt already. Its gives the burnt/roast flavours. For these shoot for 5-10% of the mash bill in the beer.

    In a beer recipe the rule of thumb for perception on mouthfeel for oats is more like 20%.

    As to yeast, the Irish strain is pretty clean, as is US05. If you want esters for complexity go for a more classic strain.

    Here is a link to a comparison of roast vs patent.

    Roasted Grains: Roasted Barley vs. Black (Patent) Malt | exBEERiment Results! @ Brülosophy

  • SamSam
    edited September 2020

    @Beerideas thanks for that, an interesting article. With the yeast I often will split the ferments and do half with a higher ester yeast like Distilamax MW to get that complexity.

    With the mash bill I was starting to think about adapting this from the brew shop I get my grains from. Dropping the Candied Syrup though. Just the mash bill, not the rest of it.

    Stout fit for a Czar - Russian Imperial Stout! Brendan's Smoked Habanero Imperial Stout @

    They have the oats in at about 13% (once ratios are adjusted to remove the syrup)

  • that sounds tasty

  • SamSam
    edited September 2020

    I thought so too, based on that I was thinking about the following mash bill:

    Chevallier Ale    - 60%
    Rolled Oats       - 13%
    Manuka Smoked     - 10%
    Dark Choc         -  5%
    Shepherds Delight -  4%
    Dark Crystal      -  4%
    Roast Wheat       -  3%
    Light Choc        -  1%
  • @Beerideas what yeast strains do you think might add esters and complexity?

    There is part of my that thinks using something at the more neutral end of the spectrum will let the gains speak for themselves but then on the flip side I want some complexity and depth otherwise it will just be 'flat'.

  • edited September 2020

    We've done a few dark whiskies similar to this, chocolate roast, dark roasts. Interestingly, tasted the Woodford Chocolate Rye the other day. These all have a very similar bitter note (bitter in a good way). Dark Chocolate, Coffee, roasty toasty complexity.

    When we did all the variants, we used traditional whiskey profile yeasts (Lallemand GW). My gut tells me that something heavily floral/fruity would clash with the darker flavor profile.

    I almost want almonds, nuts, vanilla, coconut as the complimentary flavors (wood-based flavors) - which take it more towards confectionary. Or, enjoy it's bitter soul all on it's own. To me, these dark/chocolate roast whiskies are late night whiskies, best enjoyed in a dark smokey bar.

    Give it a try, but I suspect the end result would come across harsher than you would expect.

    If you could listen to whiskey - this is what I feel these dark whiskies are like:

  • Thanks @grim sage advice as always! I am looking for something a bit heavier and complex, as you say something that can be savoured with a cigar but not a quaffer per se.

    TBH I feel I have the mash bill straight in my head but am going in circles mentally with the yeast selection. I have some GW in the fridge so could do half with MW and half with GW but am concious MW has a fruity profile...

    On the one hand a traditional Scottish or British Ale yeast would accentuate the malts but on the other I would like some esters and complexity in there.

    For me the issue is I'm not a fan of drinking Porter and Stout beers, I appreciate the complexity it brings to a whisky but its just not a style of beer I like so I feel a bit like I'm flying blind.

    Maybe a yeast like a SafAle-T58 or Wyeast American Ale 1272 or Ringwood Ale 1187

    Of everything I have done the yeast selection for this Stout is the decision I've struggled with most!

  • SamSam
    edited September 2020

    @grim whilst I love Dire Straits I was thinking more along these lines...

    Thinking more like Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas, trying to piece it all together in the morning

  • Can you put peyote in a gin basket?

  • If your talking about the problems in US cities try Riders of the storm.

  • edited September 2020

    At 13% dark malts - the coffee/chocolate is going to railroad anything subtle. Yeast contribution is going to be relatively minor in this story.

  • @grim I seem to recall in an earlier post you mentioned you have found the dark malts quite over powering.

    I might try and reduce the Choc & Roast Wheat to 5% on aggregate which might allow other flavours to come through

  • Make 3-4 batches and decide what YOU like Sam. Then give them to a panel and find out what others like.

    StillDragon Australia & New Zealand - Your StillDragon® Distributor for Australia & New Zealand

  • I will play around and figure it out, I just want to try and find the best starting point as I only have limited grain.

    I guess thinking about it, if I were to take a step back then starting with the dark malts at a lower dose and increasing from there if required would be the logical thing.

  • @punkin said: Make 3-4 batches and decide what YOU like Sam. Then give them to a panel and find out what others like.

    Yup. Offer it up blind to your sensory panel.

    Have em evaluate it more than once. By that I mean have you ever had a wine that tasted good one day, and then on a different day it didn't seem to be as good as you remembered? Or had wine with a meal that was delicious but isolated on it's own only seemed average,,,,if you see my meaning?

    StillDragon North America - Your StillDragon® Distributor for North America

  • I totally get what you are saying, the amount of times I have visited a winery and loved something, got a case and then opened it up later and thought what the hell was I thinking is not funny. Actually my wife does it still...

    Anyway I just find being less experienced in the darker malts and not being a fan of stout beers makes it hard to decide where to start as I have no real point of reference. Being an engineer this frustrates the hell out of me so I look to research.

    I am mashing a smoked whisky today with 3% chocolate malt so will use that as a starting point and build from there.

    I just don't want to go to the effort and expense of making something that really misses the mark.

    Appreciate all the input

  • @Sam Sorry I’ve been away for a few days.

    I’m not sure what you’ve got for yeast selection in your part of the world but wyeast strains I’d consider would be ESB, West Yorkshire or the London Ale strains. London 3 can be a pain as it’s a low Flocc variety.

    I noticed the Roast wheat as well. In beer this grain is more for colour adjustment than roast/bitter notes as it has no husk.

    Hope this helps.

  • SamSam
    edited September 2020

    So, I was looking at the oats from my grain supplier and came across these roasted oats which look like a great addition to a stout bringing light nutty flavours.

    Would the roasting of the oats change the mouthfeel you get from rolled oats?

    Im thinking about swapping out the rolled oats for this as like grim suggested the nuttiness would compliment the stout.

    Gladfield Go Nutty - Roasted Oat Malt @

  • Found that whole rolled oats, including husk, add a kind of bold spiciness in a whisky. Quick oat style has some similarities, but muted a bit. Coca Cola is what we hear from people when they try our oat bourbon (49%).

  • I definitely like the spiciness and warmth that oats gives you in a whiskey. I just did an Irish and rather than my normal 10 % I put in about 20% and it made a huge difference, in a good way. Made the whole thing a bit sticky but nothing that beta glucanayse couldnt fix. The wash reminded me of when my father would force me to eat porridge when I was a kid. A bad memory that was over come with a glass of whiskey.

  • @Sam If they are like Golden Naked Oats and the like, mouthfeel should be the roughly the same. The toasting merely amps up the nuttiness. Classic in Brown Ales, and I'd be curious to taste it in spirits.

  • @Beerideas said: Sam If they are like Golden Naked Oats and the like, mouthfeel should be the roughly the same. The toasting merely amps up the nuttiness. Classic in Brown Ales, and I'd be curious to taste it in spirits.

    Definitely would love to evaluate.

    StillDragon North America - Your StillDragon® Distributor for North America

Sign In or Register to comment.