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Old 06-06-2007, 07:06 PM   #11
Ó Flannagáin
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I never use finishing hops in my hefe's and they turn out great... you really want that yeast flavor/aroma to shine on a true, traditional hefe.

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Old 06-08-2007, 01:36 AM   #12
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Had to alter the recipe again. My LHBS was out of light DME of all things, very strange. So now I'm going all wheat DME which means instead of a 50/50 wheat/barley mix I'll be at roughly 65/35 wheat/barely and I'm ok with that. I also changed the hops from Hallertauer to Saaz. This was based on a suggestion by the owner of my LHBS. He makes an EXCELLENT hefe with Saaz so I figured I'd take his advice.

Mixed up the starter last night and it appears to be done already which has me a little concerned. I boiled 2 cups of water with 1/2 cup wheat DME (no light at the LHBS, remember). Cooled that to about 75 degrees or so, poured into a gallon growler I bought just for the occasion and pitched my very swelled Wyeast 3068. That was about 8:00 last night and this morning there was a little activity but now I don't see much of anything. I have a little less than a 1/2" of cake across the bottom of the growler so in terms of volume I've certainly increased what was in the smack pack. Should I boil some more DME and throw it in? I was planning on putting this in the fridge tomorrow night so I could pour off the wort Saturday when I brew.

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Old 06-08-2007, 02:03 AM   #13
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A few points to ponder here:

Most hefes have a single hops addition early in the boil - just enough to balance the sweetness of the malt. There should be little bitterness or hop flavor/aroma present in the end product. The yeast characteristics need to take center stage with a hefe.

Wheat beers are cloudy from both yeast and the additional protein content that wheat contributes. Hence, you SHOULD have a bit of chill haze. Don't bother adding Irish moss or other finings. Most recipes call for Irish moss because the author doesn't understand why he is adding it (or he forgot to remove it from his recipe "template").

Steeping wheat and vienna at 150 is technically mashing. Use only 4.5 to 5 quarts of water, and make sure your temp remains between 150 and 160 for at least 30 minutes. Consider sparging (rinsing) the grains with some hot (170-180) water in order to extract as much sugar as possible from them.

Starters should ferment fast. No activity after a few hours is normal - it's done. If you like, let it settle, pour off the beer, and add some more wort - preferably a more than you used initially. That's called "stepping up," a common technique for yeast propagation.

When pitching your starter, you have two options - pitch the whole thing, or let it settle and pour off most of the beer. If you do the latter, leave a bit of liquid at the bottom so that you can swirl the yeast cake up before pitching it.

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Old 06-11-2007, 01:14 AM   #14
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Ended up not brewing on Saturday but brewed today. Decided to leave out the Irish Moss. Everything went really well and the starter worked phenomenally, I think I'm hooked. Three hours after pitching and I had steady activity. Now, about 8 hours in and my blow off container is about to overflow. I have a feeling this is going to be a great brew.

One question I did have, is there any way to cut down on the foam produced by DME? By the time I had all 5.25lbs. incorporated there was probably 5-6" of foam on top of the liquid and it took FOREVER for the foam to dissipate so that I could add the hops. Alright, maybe not forever but a good 10-15 minutes. If it helps, I added the DME just before the wort came to a boil because I'd found in previous brews that if I wait until full boil the steam from the boil causes the DME to clump up right at the opening of the bag which makes a real mess.

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Old 06-16-2007, 07:33 PM   #15
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It's been almost a week in the primary now, tomorrow around noon will be 1 week exactly, but it appears as though my fermentation is still chugging along. I just timed it and my airlock is bubbling every 8 seconds or so. I was planning on racking to a secondary today but with that much activity I'm hesitant. The tripel I did just before this hefe took two weeks in the primary but I didn't think hefe's were suppose to take that long. Should I be concerned? I haven't taken a gravity reading yet since I figure with that kind of activity there's no way it's ready yet.

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Old 06-27-2007, 01:41 PM   #16
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Bottled this one last nigh, tasted AWESOME. I've very, VERY pleased with it. Great flavor, can pick up the banana but it's not too strong, nice and smooth with no discernable bitterness. I'm adding a PM version of this recipe to my original post, going to try that when I get back from vacation.

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