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Old 11-06-2005, 01:21 PM   #1
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Default Light color in a Hefe Weizen? How?

I brewed up my first Hefe Weizen yesterday and I'm surprised by the color of my wort. It seems awfully dark.

My recipe:

6 lb. Williams Weizen LME

mini mash
1.25 lb Golden promise
12 oz Cara pils
8 oz munich

.5 oz Hallertau Mittefruh 4.8AA 60 min
.5 oz Hallertau Mittefruh 4.8AA 20 min
.25 oz Hallertau Mittefruh 4.8AA 5 min

I did the mash and the resulting 2 gallons of wort was light enough. Adding the additional water, LME and boiling really darkened it up a bunch. I used whole hops and due to the large quantity of cold break, I left quite a bit in my kettle. I ended up with only 4.5 gallons of the 5.75 that was in my kettle. SG was 1.050

I made up a little more wort in my kitchen using 1 gallon water and 1.25 lbs Muntons Wheat DME, and another .25 oz hops. I was again surprised at how dark the wort is with just DME / hops / water.

The OG after adding this was still at 1.050.

I pitched WLP300 HefeWizen yeast starter last night about 8:00 pm and it's bubbling nicely through the blow off tube this morning.

Those of you that brew Hefe Weizen using extracts. Have you been able to brew a light colored brew? Did I carmalize the wort by doing a full boil?

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Old 11-06-2005, 01:28 PM   #2
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As for color, you were doomed from the start by using LME. But I am also concerned that you mention DME in another paragraph.

No problem. Liquid wort has already been boiled down and you went and re-boiled it. There's no other recourse except to do a "late boil". That's where you boil 1-2 gals water and only 1-2 lbs of malt for the entire hour, then add the rest of the wort when there's only 15 mins to go.

Boil only the lightest wort, say Extra Light DME. Add the wheat after 45 mins (if you are doing a 60 min boil).

My beer comes out lighter than most that way.

Good luck.

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Old 11-06-2005, 01:30 PM   #3
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Yeah, you probably caramelized it a bit, but it isn't anythign to worry about.

I quickly learned when doing extract batches that I wasn't going to hit exactly on my colors--due to the extract already being quite dark even before it was boiled.

I think it might lighten up a touch by the time you bottle it as it settles proteins and such.

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Old 11-06-2005, 03:42 PM   #4
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To get the lightest color from extracts you need to use dry extract.
I would also suggest a shorter boil time.
I have found that wort is somewhat darker than the final beer.
And (don't burn me at the stake) you could replace some of the extract with some rice extract or corn sugar.
I would also lose the munich.

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Old 11-07-2005, 02:30 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ScottT
Those of you that brew Hefe Weizen using extracts. Have you been able to brew a light colored brew? Did I carmalize the wort by doing a full boil?
A Franziskaner clone with Munton's Wheat DME came out very light...pretty close to the original. The recipe called for just 4 oz. of Belgian Aromatic and 2 oz of Acid Malt steeped, and I did a 3 gallon boil. Beer captured also has a Weihenstephaner clone that calls for nothing but wheat dme.

My guess is if you sub dme for the lme you'll get a lot lighter. For now you could call this batch a dunkel.
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Old 11-07-2005, 08:09 PM   #6
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It seems that the key is the partial boil. I'll try that next time.

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Bottle Conditioning: Oatmeal Stout

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Drinking bottled: Brown Autumn Wee Heavy
Hefe Weizen
Peaches and Cream Weizen


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Old 11-07-2005, 08:14 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ScottT
It seems that the key is the partial boil. I'll try that next time.
I think it's more DME vs LME...you might try a late addition of the LME if you've got a bunch to use up, but I don't think you can get really light with LME, IMHO.
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Old 11-07-2005, 08:27 PM   #8
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I did a small 1 gallon of wort using just DME and it was the same color as the rest of my wort using LME.

I'll just wait and see what it looks like when it clears. Maybe it'll be lighter than I think.

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Bottle Conditioning: Oatmeal Stout

Drinking from Keg: Ordinary Bitter, Kolsch

Drinking bottled: Brown Autumn Wee Heavy
Hefe Weizen
Peaches and Cream Weizen


"This is grain, which any fool can eat, but for which the Lord intended a more divine means of consumption... Beer!"
-Robin Hood, Prince of Thieves, Friar Tuck.

Next up: Hefe Weizen

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