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Old 03-16-2009, 06:00 AM   #1
oswiu
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Default What to brew as a "starter" for a doppelbock?

It's getting near to winter now in New Zealand, so lager season is coming on.

I want to brew a doppelbock in a couple months time, and am planning on just pitching it on to the yeast cake from a lower gravity beer. The question is, what beer?

I'll probably be using Fermentis S-23 (liquid yeast isn't easy to get here) unless I can find something good to harvest from a bottle conditioned beer.

Malts I'll have available include:
Lots of Pils malt
30L Crystal
Chocolate
Wheat Malt
Melanoiden
Munich
Biscuit Malt
Roasted Barley

Hopwise I currently have these, but I'll probably be ordering some more soon:
NZ Hallertauer
Pacific Gem
Cascade

So what beer would you make to pitch a doppelbock on to?

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Old 03-16-2009, 01:48 PM   #2
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Just throwing it out there but how about a Maibock? Munich + Hallertauer sounds pretty delicious to me!

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Old 03-16-2009, 04:08 PM   #3
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How about a Blonde Ale?

I brewed a Blonde Ale with 2206 using a small (1 liter) starter , came out GREAT and had lots of fresh slurry for pitching

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Old 03-16-2009, 05:45 PM   #4
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not very creative, but how about just a bock.

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Old 03-17-2009, 01:35 AM   #5
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Hmmm... Some interesting ideas.
I like the blonde ale idea. I don't have great temperature control, and I'll just be depending on a big water bath and average min-max temps of about 8-14 May-September. Doing an Ale as a starter would mean I could get started in April, before it's really lager time.

Regarding Bock and Maibock, I'd always thought that yeast from anything over about a 1.050 beer would be too "stressed" to re-use. But then I was just listening to a podcast about High Gravity brewing, and they suggested using a high-ish gravity wort in a starter for a high grav beer. So maybe by brewing something in the 1.070 range I'd be breeding yeast that would be better equipped to handle the 1.10 or so of the doppel?

Lots of interesting ideas here

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Old 03-17-2009, 01:55 AM   #6
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You could do a small maibock if you were very concerned about yeast health. Jamil does think the same and recommends not doing steps in anything above 1.040. I suppose you could go somewhere in between and do a Munich Helles. 1.045 is the bottom of the style and shouldn't stress the yeast out too badly. That way you'd have a nice cell count of healthy viable yesties ready to go to town on the doppelbock.

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Old 03-17-2009, 03:39 AM   #7
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My 0.2$ is you should make a smallish Amber Lager with the strain you want to ferment the dopplebock with and make a nice starter for it. Build up healthy yeast with a nice strong first ferment of the Amber lager. This will get you down to where the DB should finish in a respectable time. Avoid cloying flavors.
Good Luck! Gabe

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