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Coffee Tasting

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I was having a discussion with a guy on my other forum about adding coffee to beer. I've done a few ways but lately have taken to cold brewing my coffee (see Imperial Rhino Stout 2011)

Well this guy decided to run an experiment to determine the level and style of coffee he wanted in his beer. The information was great so I'm going to re-post it here.

Harrison wrote:

Decided to test some coffee out. These aren't by any means guidelines anyone should follow.. I'm new to brewing but i wanted to try this out before i went forward with adding coffee to my beer. It is a good thing i did this because i might have greatly overpowered my beer with coffee flavor.. coffee isn't messing around.


Medium full body roast coffee.

Guinness as control beer.

Each cold/hot brew coffee was done with 2oz coffee per 8oz(1cup) water. And then correct proportions were applied. (i think)

1/5 = 1 gallon of coffee per 5 gallon batch.
1/10 = .5 gallon of coffee per 5 gallon batch

Cold Brewed Coffee
1. 1/5 of beer ratio:
Aroma: smooth coffee
Taste: Smooth coffee flavor & slightly grainy. More coffee than beer flavor.

1a. 1/10 of beer ratio:
Aroma: subtle and smooth coffee aroma
Taste: a bit dryer little astringency, good amount of coffee flavor

Hot brewed coffee
2. 1/5 of beer ratio:
aroma: strong sharp roasty coffee aroma
taste: Agressive roast/burnt flavor and aftertaste

2a. 1/10 of beer ratio:
aroma: bit of roast some coffee
flavor: bad, astringent, sharp


Aroma: The hot brewed coffee had a much stronger aggressive aroma; for a imperial it would work out a bit better in small amounts. You could make a really serious beer with big flavors with it but could go wrong super easily id imagine.

For a regular stout the cold coffee is a better way to go. Much smoother mellow flavor. The coffee ads a bit of astringency and can overpower the flavor of beer easily. If using coffee I would maybe go for higher FG and other ways to sweeten up the beer slightly to balance it out.

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