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Old 03-02-2011, 01:19 PM   #1
iahebert
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Default Wit Recipe-looking for critique

Hey Howdy-
I'm entering this into a homebrew competition, and would like some critique. Brewday is Saturday, so anything helps. Thanks!


Recipe Specifications
--------------------------
Batch Size: 5.00 gal
Boil Size: 5.72 gal
Estimated OG: 1.048 SG
Estimated Color: 3.4 SRM
Estimated IBU: 16.7 IBU
Brewhouse Efficiency: 75.0 %
Boil Time: 60 Minutes

Ingredients:
------------
Amount Item Type % or IBU
5.00 lb Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM) Grain 57.1 %
2.00 lb Wheat Malt, Ger (2.0 SRM) Grain 22.9 %
1.00 lb Wheat, Flaked (1.6 SRM) Grain 11.4 %
0.50 lb Oats, Flaked (1.0 SRM) Grain 5.7 %
0.25 lb Cara-Pils/Dextrine (2.0 SRM) Grain 2.9 %
1.50 oz Saaz [4.00%] (30 min) Hops 16.7 IBU
0.75 oz Coriander Seed (Boil 15.0 min) Misc
0.75 oz Orange Peel, Bitter (Boil 15.0 min) Misc
1 Pkgs Belgian Wit Ale (White Labs #WLP400)

Single rest mash @154

It meets all the specs in Beersmith, but I'm really wanting something that's got a nice mouthfeel and great body (redundant much?) and isn't "off' with too much wheat or oats.

thanks!!

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Old 03-02-2011, 02:18 PM   #2
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I say it looks good, but with the oats, and flaked wheat, I don't think you need the Carapils.

Also, I would boil for 90 minutes, and I would suggest a small bittering hop addition.

FWIW, I like my Witbeirs nice and orangy, so I would up the corriander to 1 oz, and add like 3 oz of fresh Bitter orange zest. Again, that is how I like em. I also mashed at a lower temp, I wanted this to be a nice crisp beer, but if you are looking for more mouthfeel and body, the 154° rest will do.

Also, be sure to use Indian corriander, store bought corriander lends a hot dog flavor to the beer. The first couple Wits I made had the HD flavor, and I couldn't figure it out, until I decided to go to our local Indian market and purchased some corriander from them--off flavor solved. The Indian corriander smells citrusy rather than like celery, which I think is what the store bought stuff smell like.

Here is a recipe to comapare:

Recipe Specifications
--------------------------
Batch Size: 5.00 gal
Boil Size: 8.01 gal
Estimated OG: 1.056 SG
Estimated Color: 4.9 SRM
Estimated IBU: 17.6 IBU
Brewhouse Efficiency: 79.00 %
Boil Time: 90 Minutes

Ingredients:
------------
Amount Item Type % or IBU
5 lbs 5.8 oz White Wheat Malt (2.4 SRM) Grain 58.01 %
1 lbs 15.0 oz Pale Malt (2 Row) Bel (3.0 SRM) Grain 21.00 %
15.5 oz Munich Malt (9.0 SRM) Grain 10.50 %
15.5 oz Oats, Flaked (1.0 SRM) Grain 10.50 %
6.80 gm Northern Brewer [8.00 %] (60 min) Hops 8.6 IBU
27.50 gm Tettnang [4.80 %] (15 min) Hops 5.6 IBU
27.50 gm Tettnang [4.80 %] (5 min) Hops 3.5 IBU
0.25 oz Chamomile (Boil 5.0 min) Misc
1.00 oz Coriander Seed (Boil 5.0 min) Misc
3.00 oz Orange Peel (Fresh) (Boil 5.0 min) Misc
1.00 tbsp PH 5.2 Stabilizer (Mash 60.0 min) Misc
1.00 items Servomyces Capsule (Boil 5.0 min) Misc
1 Pkgs Belgian Wit Ale (White Labs #WLP400) [StarYeast-Wheat


Mash Schedule: Single Infusion, Light Body, Batch Sparge
Total Grain Weight: 9.24 lb
----------------------------
Single Infusion, Light Body, Batch Sparge
Step Time Name Description Step Temp
60 min Mash In Add 11.55 qt of water at 163.5 F 148.0 F


Notes:
------
Brew day went well over all, I did forget to get a pre-boil gravity, but remembered to grab SGs from my 3 runnings which were:

1. 1.090
2. 1.039
3. 1.023

(ie. 90(1)+39(3.25)+23(2.75)=280, 280/8[pre-boil volume]=35 or 1.035, 280/5[final volume]=56 or 1.056)

Pre-boil was 1.035, 7 point difference between my estimated pre-boil SG of 1.042

OG ended up at 1.056, my SG/OG was 1.054 @ 79.4° = 1.056 adjusted.

I hit my target right on!

Looking at the last sample I probably could have sparged with another 1.5 gallons and probably wouldn't have had to add 1 gallon of pre-boil top up water.

FG 1.010 @ 74.6° = 1.012 adjusted fot temperature. 1 point off of the estimated FG of 1.013.

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Old 03-02-2011, 02:44 PM   #3
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Thanks for the input here. When you say fresh orange zest, would just a regular ol' navel orange work? I have a microplane, and it's not a problem to zest a whole orange.

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Old 03-02-2011, 03:21 PM   #4
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I personally prefer a 50/50 blend of pilsner and wheat...nothin' else. I like using unmalted wheat and do a cereal mash on it to gelatinize the starches and convert them. A 90 min. boil will help with DMS from the pilsner malt. I use fresh organic oranges and use a peeler to remove the skin while being careful to not get too much of the white pith. I used standard corriander, but am moving to the indian varietal as it had a bit of a celery note to me. This formula took 2nd place in last year's Puget Sound Pro Am.

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Old 03-02-2011, 04:06 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iahebert
Thanks for the input here. When you say fresh orange zest, would just a regular ol' navel orange work? I have a microplane, and it's not a problem to zest a whole orange.
yes i use navals in my hefe all the time. ive gotten to where im addin 4 oz zest and 1/2 oz of corriander at flameout and then rackin to the secondary on a dash more corriander and another 5 oz of zest. love it! orangey as hell but after about 4-5 months bottled, it mellows and mingles so well ! i wash the oranges and dip em some star san and then sanatize the lil zester. zest away and freeze it for a day or two, add it, then rack right on top of it.

just make real sure when u zest just to get the outer orange of the rind. stay clear of the white pith. that **** is sour and acidic ass hell. good luck.

oh and i love amarillo and cascades when using orane zest. just a thought.
God Bless
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Old 03-02-2011, 04:29 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wonderbread23 View Post
I personally prefer a 50/50 blend of pilsner and wheat...nothin' else. I like using unmalted wheat and do a cereal mash on it to gelatinize the starches and convert them. A 90 min. boil will help with DMS from the pilsner malt. I use fresh organic oranges and use a peeler to remove the skin while being careful to not get too much of the white pith. I used standard corriander, but am moving to the indian varietal as it had a bit of a celery note to me. This formula took 2nd place in last year's Puget Sound Pro Am.
+1 to above, to brew true Belgian wit you need 50% pilsner malt and 50% unmalted/flaked wheat, wheat malt belongs to hefeweisens. I usually throw 0.5 lbs of flaked oats as well
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Old 03-02-2011, 05:55 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paraordnance View Post
+1 to above, to brew true Belgian wit you need 50% pilsner malt and 50% unmalted/flaked wheat, wheat malt belongs to hefeweisens. I usually throw 0.5 lbs of flaked oats as well
So, i'm assuming with this ratio.... Rice Hulls Rice Hulls Rice Hulls?
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Old 03-02-2011, 06:21 PM   #8
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Yes to the rice hulls. I've done plenty almost 50/50 with a touch of oats. You need the hulls for sure. I think I might order a big ass bag of them from Country malt when my local club gets the group buy around.

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Old 03-02-2011, 07:18 PM   #9
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Again-
thanks for all the help guys! It's great to have a board here that can offer so much info.

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Old 03-02-2011, 08:28 PM   #10
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FWIW, Bitter oranges will make the world of difference in the aroma of your brew. I know many people use navels, but the citrus aroma from the Bitter orange peel is much more intense, so if you plan to use navel oranges, I would up the zest ratio. Especially if your recipe is calling for bitter orange zest.

I am lucky in that where I live there are bitter orange trees all over the place, many ornamental orange trees in my area are bitter orange trees, and on our local university campus they are everywhere! So it is just as easy/convenient, to pick some right off the tree the day or so before I plan to brew. Also, bitter oranges are the oranges that are all lumpyand bumpy on the surface, if you are able to source them, stab your finger nail in to the peel and compare it to a regular navel orange, the aroma is much better, and more intense. I would highly suggest using the bitter oranges if you are able.

As far as he 50/50, pils/unmalted wheat, goes that may be the standard for Wits, but the recipe I listed is a variation of one of Randy Mosher's recipes from Radical Brewing, and it is a very good recipe. If your brew is strictly to enter a competition and win, then stick with the 50/50 rule, if you are trying to brew a truly unique beer that breaks the mold, try something a little outside the box (that is what I really like about Mosher's book he isn't attempting to brew the run of the mill style-guideline beer).

For instance the recipe I listed has a slightly darker SRM, and slightly higher gravity than style guidelines suggest, but that can be easily corrected with some minor grain alterations.

Either way, good luck and post back to let us know how your beer does in the comp!

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