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Old 05-08-2013, 03:47 PM   #1
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Default Berliner Weisse Clarity

I recently brewed my second ever Berliner Weisse a couple weeks ago. The first attempt was a few years ago and was a little disappointing; really low tartness and more like a basic wheat beer with a slight Belgian character.

This time I did some more research (HBT, various podcasts, NHC presentation, etc.). I pitched a lacto starter after chilling then pitched my yeast blend seven days later. The recipe isn't quite 50/50 barley and wheat but it's pretty close so I was expecting it to be fairly cloudy.

I pulled a small sample a couple days ago when the brew was 15 days old. The tartness level is awesome so this attempt is way better than the first.

What really surprised me was the clarity of this brew. Usually my brews with that much wheat tend to be hazy but this one looks like I've added gelatin or some other fining agent to help it clear. Anyone else experience anything like this with their Berliner Weisse? This is the first time I've ever pitched a lactobacillus starter a week before pitching yeast. Could the elevated lactic acid levels from the lacto's head start be contributing to the clarity?

3.75 # Belgian Pilsner Malt
3.00 # Weyermann Pale Wheat Malt
1.0 oz Aged Debittered Hops (Mash hops, 0.0 IBU's)
1 package Wyeast 5335 Lactobacillus in 1L starter
1 package Wyeast 3191 Berliner Weisse Blend

Mashed at 150F for 90 minutes, 15 minute boil.

And here's a pic. Sorry for the quality, I think it's so clear that my iphone had a hard time focusing.
bw.jpg

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Old 05-08-2013, 04:13 PM   #2
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I was wondering about these things myself,as I have midwest's PM Berlin Wheat kit. I got it with the Wyeast activator 3056 Bavarian Wheat blend. I assume this is a wheat yeast/lacto blend or something? Can it be washed & saved? Can't remember if it should be clear or not either...

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Old 05-08-2013, 05:57 PM   #3
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I'm not sure if the acidity would have any effect on clarity, but there's nothing wrong with a clear berliner

Quote:
Originally Posted by unionrdr View Post
I was wondering about these things myself,as I have midwest's PM Berlin Wheat kit. I got it with the Wyeast activator 3056 Bavarian Wheat blend. I assume this is a wheat yeast/lacto blend or something?
despite the confusing name, that kit isn't for a berliner. 3056 contains no lacto
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Old 05-08-2013, 06:06 PM   #4
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I was having the same questions when I poured my Berliner Weisse. Mine is also crystal clear. The first picture is mine and the second is a Berliner Kindl Weisse from Berlin. The first pours off of both are clear. As with any German style with wheat, a lot of the haze comes from the yeast that have settled to the bottom of the bottle after carbonation (which is intended to be poured into the glass for consumption)

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Old 05-08-2013, 06:25 PM   #5
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I brewed a Berliner Weisse (4-day sour mash, short boil, ferment with 1056) that was cloudy for months in the keg. I was bottling some for a competition and all the sudden it had dropped crystal clear. Unfortunately it was also the last bottle of that keg so I never got to taste the clear version. I still have no idea how/why that happened but it did. It did win the sour ale category at different competitions in both its cloudy and clear phases, so I wouldn't worry to much either way!

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Old 05-08-2013, 08:24 PM   #6
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Do you guys know what "blend" the wyeast 3056 bavarian wheat blend is? Midwest's pdf doesn't really say?...

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Old 05-08-2013, 10:10 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unionrdr
Do you guys know what "blend" the wyeast 3056 bavarian wheat blend is? Midwest's pdf doesn't really say?...
Looks like a blend of sach strains. From Wyeast's website:

"This proprietary blend of a top-fermenting neutral ale strain and a Bavarian wheat strain is a great choice when a subtle German style wheat beer is desired. The complex esters and phenolics from the wheat strain are nicely softened and balanced by the neutral ale strain."
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Old 05-08-2013, 10:12 PM   #8
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Good to hear I'm not the only one seeing a nice bright BW.

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Old 05-09-2013, 12:03 AM   #9
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Their website says its a neutral ale strain and a German strain, are you looking for more specific?

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Old 05-09-2013, 02:02 AM   #10
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I did one myself with initial inoculation of lacto, four day wait followed with sacc, then brett once fermentation finished. grain bill 50/50 pils/wheat. And came out quite clear without any effort. Bottled conditioned with priming sugar.

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