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Coffee for Your Beer (or Soul)

What's the best way to get your coffee in your beer?

Most of the beer drinkers I know are coffee drinkers as well. Hell, most Americans crave that morning bump of caffeine. So it's natural that brewers attempt to combine the two fixes in one. So if you're wanting to add coffee to your next beer (say a nice roasty stout) - here's a few ways to do it:

  1. Add coffee to your mash or boil - Jonny Lieberman used to do this like with his Blackwine Lite - ~1 cup of fresh ground coffee to the mash. I've seen similar amounts of grounds or beans chucked in at the end of the boil to steep and extract hot as you cool.
  2. "Dry bean" - I have never done this, so I can't talk to it, but folks have added beans to their beer in secondary to sit for a week or two
  3. Add hot brewed drip or espresso coffee to the ferment (or boil) - Run down to your local starbucks and buy 6 shots of espresso (or for the love of Pete make your own or use a better source than Starbucks). Straight into the fermenter
  4. Cold extract - My favorite. I combine 1 cup of fresh ground coffee to 2-3 cups of cold filtered water in my French Press. Let that sit overnight, filter with the built in plunger and straight into the keg. Stuff is incredibly potent. It's also what I drink in the morning when I need an extra kick in the pants!

There you go, a couple of simple techniques for adding coffee to your beer. Get to it! (For research purposes, I recommend you buy a bottle of Alesmith Speedway Stout)

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