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Old 09-19-2009, 09:23 PM   #1
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Default Imperial/Double/Doppel/Strong/Stark Hefeweizen recipe?

Ok, so I don't care what I call it, but I'm currently drinking a Sam Adams Imperial White, and I'm liking it. I want to make something near this.

I'm thinking of calling it HefeStark! (If you get German, you know it means "Strong Yeast", but since everyone calls Hefeweizen "Hefe", it kinda fits).

(Edit: I started typing this last night and my computer died. I went ahead and did what follows.)

I have a batch of Hefeweizen that I started last week. I didn't get a full 5 gallons, but rather something more like 4 gallons @ 1.049 OG. I tried a true no-sparge technique and only got 50% efficiency.

(Recipe:
5 lbs. Belgian Pilsner
5 lbs. German Wheat
.5 lbs. Munich Malt
.5 oz. Tettnang 5.2% @ 60 min.
Danstar Munich Wheat dry yeast)

I've decided to add 5 pounds of honey and enough water to bring the total volume up 5 gallons.

Here's my math:

OG 1.049 @ 4 gallons, diluted to 5 gallons = 1.039.
5 lbs. honey (@ 1.035 ppg) diluted in 5 total gallons = +35 points.
So, new SG (pre-ferment) would be 1.074.

I think I would anticipate all of the honey to attenuate and about 75% of the wort, so my FG should still be about 1.010, right? Or would I still get about 75% of overall apparent attenuation?

If I got it down to about 1.010, that would be 8.4% ABV. Would that require a lot of aging?

Anyone have any idea how this will taste?

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Old 09-20-2009, 01:51 PM   #2
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Whoa. IMO you should have left well enough alone. Nothing wrong with a 1.049 Hefe. Sometimes you have to bite the bullet and move onto the next batch. 5#'s of honey is WAY too much for a Hefe. It will be a very dry beer to say the least. Be prepared to add more yeast if it stalls. Let us know how it turns out.

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Old 09-20-2009, 04:00 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Poobah58 View Post
Whoa. IMO you should have left well enough alone. Nothing wrong with a 1.049 Hefe. Sometimes you have to bite the bullet and move onto the next batch. 5#'s of honey is WAY too much for a Hefe. It will be a very dry beer to say the least. Be prepared to add more yeast if it stalls. Let us know how it turns out.
All of your points are valid, but half the fun of brewing your own if is brewing something you can't get anywhere else. I'm not sure that this beer would be for me, but then I'm starting to work the other direction - toward session beers so that I can have a few pints and not be useless for the rest of the day.

Also, keep in mind that if you diverge far from the guidelines, you could end up with something undrinkable (or that only you will drink).

Let us know how it turns out.
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Old 09-20-2009, 08:18 PM   #4
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I'm not sure I made it clear, but I didn't make this change to "fix" the Hefe batch.
I did it, like jldc said, to have fun.

It may turn out awful, but so what?
I've got session beers on tap and I wanted to play around with a more unusual beer.
Plus, I really enjoyed the Imperial Wit I was drinking.
Of course, you can't drink more than 2 of them before you get useless.

Also, I'm not looking to end up with a Hefe.
I'm looking for more of a Wheat Mead/Wine.
I'm hoping I keep some of the esters (particularly banana) that should have been produced,
but I understand that this will be a beer that only falls in the Specialty category.

Thanks for the replies!!!

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Old 09-20-2009, 08:23 PM   #5
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Also, was my math correct when calculating my new standard gravities?

What would you estimate my FG to be?

Thanks!

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Old 09-20-2009, 11:55 PM   #6
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Hey, I'm all for having fun but 5#'s of honey in any 5-gal batch might not taste so good. I brewed a wheatwine at 1.090 and it came out great. Just added a boat load of malt...

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Old 09-21-2009, 02:35 AM   #7
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@Poobah,

Can you tell me WHY you say WHAT you say? I don't want to argue if you know better, but unless I'm mistaken, what I've done is essentially a "braggot"; i.e., half mead, half beer. So, based on what I've read, I'm inclined to disagree with your statement. Would you mind backing it up?

Thanks!

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Old 09-21-2009, 02:53 AM   #8
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Based on what you said first, I'd be inclined to go along with Poohbah -- if what you wanted was an Imperial Hefe, adding 5 lbs of honey is not the way to go. What you will get from adding 5 lbs of honey will be nothing like an imperial hefe, I think. However, if what you were planning all along was to make a braggot, then great, add 5lbs of honey & enjoy it. But next time, you might let folks know what you want to make more clearly, because Poohbah gave you great advice if you want an imperial hefe which seemed to be what you wanted to make at first.

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Old 09-21-2009, 03:51 AM   #9
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If your yeast are good and healthy, it definitely won't finish at 1.010. It might get below 1.000. Your original brew probably would've finished around 1.010, but then you added water and an boatload of very highly fermentable honey. The gravity of water is 1.000 and the honey will ferment almost completely and end up mostly as ethanol (gravity = 0.790). Both of your additions will bring the FG down from what the original anticipated gravity would have been.

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Old 09-21-2009, 10:42 AM   #10
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Well, I started off by trying to make something like a Terrapin Gamma Ray, which is (AFAIK) essentially a wheat beer with a boatload of honey added. So I did this. I guess I was wrong on the initial style, but I still hate an answer that says,

"That will never work. You screwed up."

Why do people give that answer with no explanation? It doesn't really help, ya know?

Thanks!

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