Gravel Bottom Porter

Our upcoming club competition focuses on porters of all types. My own entry is a bit of a last-minute affair; this is coupled with a need/desire to use up some ingredients in the brewing stash.

For this batch, I wanted something more on the English end of porters. I’ve done a lot of American porters and robust porters, but it’s been a long time since I’ve deviated from those. This one isn’t a true English porter–the base malts are decidedly German–but the overall feel is on the west side of the Channel.


Transferring the wort into the fermenter

Gravel Bottom Porter

  • 5.25 lbs. Munich I malt (Weyermann)
  • 1.5 lbs. Vienna malt (Great Western)
  • 1 lb. crystal extra dark malt 120° (Crisp)
  • 1 lb. pale chocolate malt 225° (Crisp)
  • 6.4 oz. flaked barley
  • 4 oz. caramel 120° malt (Briess)
  • 3.2 oz. flaked wheat
  • 1 oz. Cascade whole hops (5.5% alpha), 60 minute boil
  • 0.85 oz. Willamette hop pellets (4.9% alpha), 10 minute boil
  • 1 Whirlfloc tablet, 10 minute boil
  • 1 pkg. Empire Ale dry yeast (Mangrove Jack’s M15)

Target Parameters

  • Infusion mash to hit target of 152° for 60 minutes, batch sparge
  • Claremont tap water
  • 1.049 o.g., 1.013 f.g., 4.6% abv, 27 IBU, 29 SRM, 5.5 gallons into fermenter


  • I mashed in with 3.25 gallons of water at 165°, to hit a mash temperature of 153°. After 45 minutes, it was down to around 151°.
  • After 60 minutes, I added 1.37 gallons of water at 185°, let it sit for 10 minutes, vorlaufed, and collected the first runnings. Then, I added 3.5 gallons of water at 185°, let sit for 10 minutes, vorlaufed, and collected the second runnings.
  • In total, I collected ~6.25 gallons of wort. This was below my target, so I added RO water to get to 6.8 gallons. This equates to around 79% efficiency.
  • I brought the wort to a boil, adding hops and Whirlfloc at the appropriate times.
  • After 60 minutes, I turned off the flame and began chilling. Once I was down to ~78°, I transferred to the primary fermenter and pitched the yeast.
  • Starting gravity was 1.049; right on the nose!
  • I brewed this beer on 4 November 2017, and will be fermenting at 68°.