Do you like trying new things, experimenting with your beers? I know I do. Here at Texas Brewing, Inc, we are constantly getting new grains, hops, specialty ingredients, you name it. It's a great time to be involved in the brewing world, and a great time to be a home brewer. Today I’d like to tell you about some new malt we are offering from The Swaen Malting Company (pronounced Swan). The Swaen originates in The Netherlands, and dates back to 1906, but was only recently made available in America.


We have a wide range of malts from the Swaen line, including 2 base malts, Ale and Pilsner. We also have several specialty malts including Black Barley, Coffee, Biscuit, Chocolate, Chocolate Wheat, Belgian Caramels, and more.


I had a friend ask me to brew her a chocolate milk stout and I decided to run a bit of an experiment with the new malts. I have a chocolate mint sweet stout that I brew every year, and the Sweet Texas Crude is a derivative of that recipe. So I took a look at those two recipes and decided to use them both as a basis for the chocolate milk stout. I decided to use 100% Swaen malt for this beer. I’m also using the Cascade Beer Candi Syrup, though you could also substitute with 2-4 ounces of Organic Cacao Nibs.


Now I do a 6 gallon recipe so that I can net 5 gallons in the end. I also use a HERMS system so my efficiency may be different from yours So I’ll give you the recipe, and well as the ingredient percentage. That way you can adjust for your personal system.

Chocolate Milk Stout

6 gallon (27.27L) All-grain
OG 1.056/FG 1.023
IBU: 29.5 SRM 32.9 ABV: 4.3%


Swaen Ale malt: 6 lbs, 49%
Swaen Chocolate: 1.5 lbs, 12.2%
Briess Flaked Oats: 1lb, 8.2%
Swaen Coffee: 12oz, 6.1%
Swaen Black Barley: 8oz, 4.1%
Swaen Biscuit: 8oz, 4.1%

Target (5.5%): 2oz @60 minutes

Lactose: 1lb @15 minutes

Cascade Beer Candi Syrup (Add to secondary)

Mangrove Jack Dark Ale Yeast



Mash @ 156 for 60 minutes, Sparge with 168 water for 45-60 minutes until you achieve a pre-boil gravity of 1.040. Boil for 60 minutes. Single hop addition, 2 ounces of Target for 60 minutes. Chill wort, transfer to fermenter. Pitch 1 pack of Mangrove Jack Dark Ale yeast. After approximately 7 days in primary @64 degrees rack to secondary. Cascade Candy Syrup Cocoa Nib syrup. After 10-14 days in secondary bottle or keg.


I added the flaked oats to add a silkiness to the body, I like to use chocolate and coffee malts to help enhance each other. I use them inversely depending on what I’m brewing. I like to use the Mangrove Jack Dark Ale yeast in my milk stouts. It slightly under attenuates, only by a couple points, so it leaves a little residual sweetness.


When I doughed in, I noticed a significantly greater roast/burnt malt character. The Swaen Chocolate has a deeper roast character than I was expecting. Pleasant, but different. 


I bottled up the entire batch so that I could give my friend most of it. I chilled a couple bottles and gave one a try. It pours nice and black, with a light brown head that lingers significantly. Aromas of chocolate malt, and lightly burnt malt dominate, no detectable hop aroma. Chocolate malt flavors dominate, hints of coffee come through. Balanced towards the malt, with a slight hop bitterness. Medium bodied, moderate carbonation, with a nice creaminess to the finish. There is a pleasant lingering chocolate finish. This could easily be entered in the Sweet Stout Category (16A), without mention of the Cascade Candy Syrup.


Overall, I felt the efficiency of the Swaen malt was spot on and comparable to Briess or Avangard.  The chocolate didn’t come out as overly roasted as I originally thought.  The coffee malt has more defined coffee and balances the chocolate very nicely.  I wasn’t sure what to expect, so I tried to remain neutral with my expectations.  The final product was fantastic, to the point that my chocolate mint recipe will now utilize the Swaen malts.


If you are looking at making some small changes to existing recipes or just looking for something new, I highly recommend you check out these malts.  Also, keep watching for some potential new kits utilizing these great new malts.


-Mikey B

Mikey has been brewing since 1997 and moved onto all grain in 2012. He has worked at Texas Brewing for 4 years now. You can usually find him there on some Fridays and most Saturdays. He's also available by email at