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rick and sarah pose with full glasses of dark beer

The Hairy Porter – A Rich Winter Warmer

The Hairy Porter is a full-bodied, slightly sweet, chocolatey beer without the astringency some dark ales have. We forwent the usual black patent malt and swapped it with a dark wheat malt, leaving the familiar brownish-red color and highlighting the Belgian Special B and chocolate malts. The flaked oats and the wheat malt make for a rich, creamy head with staying power.

By comparison to some other beers — especially hop-forward IPAs —this brew is pretty straight forward, and we recommend it for brewers of all levels. The only challenge we encountered was achieving fermenting temperatures in our cold Vermont home during the winter.

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Adrift: An Off-Course Porter

I first became aware of Edmund Fitzgerald Porter through Scott Russell‘s book North American Clone Brews. He and I were working together at the time, and he told me it was possibly his favorite American porter.

A year or so later while visiting family in northwestern Pennsylvania — not too far from the beer’s home turf of Cleveland — I found this gem at the local package shop, and found out for myself just how tasty it is.

This beer recipe was intended to follow the American Homebrewers Association article “50 Commercial Clone Beer Recipes,” where they printed one recipe per each American state. Great Lakes Brewing’s Edmund Fitzgerald Porter was Ohio’s representative, and it is a worthy candidate.

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