2011 1st Place HBT- Light lager- Augustiner Lagerbier Hell
18.00 lb Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM) Grain 88.89 %
1.00 lb Cara-Pils/Dextrine (2.0 SRM) Grain 4.94 %
1.00 lb Munich Malt (9.0 SRM) Grain 4.94 %
0.25 lb Melanoiden Malt (20.0 SRM) Grain 1.23 %
2.50 oz Hallertauer [3.80 %] (60 min) Hops 16.0 IBU
2 items Whirlfloc Tablet (Boil 15.0 min) Misc
Calcium Chloride (Mash 60.0 min) Misc
Gypsum (Calcium Sulfate) (Mash 60.0 min) Misc
1 Pkgs Southern German Lager (White Labs #WLP838) [Starter 35 ml] Yeast-Lager
Gelatin in secondary
Lots to type- Instead of a decoction mash I used .25 pounds of Melanoiden and a pound of Munich. Of course you could leave that out, follow Kaiser's decoction advice and brew traditionally. You could also use some Vienna instead but it's up to you- of course.
I removed the amount of water additions because I certainly didn't want people adding random amounts of salts when they should follow their own reports to replicate Munich water.
I mashed at 154 for 90 minutes using a Sawdustguy RIMS system. 8 gallons of strike water and two 4 gallon sparges of 168 degree water.
I am a firm believer that pitching active yeast is just as, if not more, important than the starter size. Make sure that 838 is rolling and ready to eat so it has no problem taking off at 52 degrees.
Here is the story behind the beer and I'll follow up with some pictures if I can find them. This beer was brewed on 9-15-2010.
Every beer needs a story:
I have a long time friend (hell, we played Highschool football together in 1979-82- Oh GOD I'm old) named Rob. Rob works for a large Hotel chain and is married to a wonderful girl from Dublin, Ireland. Rob has relatives all over the world including a sister-in-law in Brazil and a Brother-in-law in Munich Germany so he travels the world and can eat and drink with the best of them. He’s been to Oktoberfest where he continually emailed us messages/pictures of him drinking in every tent he could find.
One Wednesday evening while druk and solving all the world’s problems I got the idea to replicate Rob’s favorite beer so I sent him this email:
“Hey Rob, you have now spent extensive time drinking in Germany. Southern Germany includes the state of Bavaria and includes Munich. (no I didn't know all that- I had to look it up as I'm a geographic idiot).
I have a couple German yeasts ready to use. One is a Southern German yeast called WLP 838. This is how it's described.
WLP838 Southern German Lager Yeast
This yeast is characterized by a malty finish and balanced aroma. It is a strong fermentor, produces slight sulfur, and low diacetyl.
What was your favorite non-wheat beer in Munich? “
Within one minute he emailed back the following:
Dude, the beer in Munich is AWESOME!!!
My favorite is Augustiner & Pauliner is second, Hofbrau is good as well… and here are the specifics from your list.
Augustiner Lagerbier Hell
Paulaner Premium Pils
Paulaner Original Münchner Hell
Hofbrau Fürsten Trunk
And thus was born my Munich Helles.
Now I know I didn't leave the beer on the yeast for 87 months, I use gelatin, love my secondaries and it goes against the HBT authorities. I also don't care for Pilsner malt but you certainly could use some or all for this recipe.
Change it, brew it, have fun and post your results. Buy some liter mugs, serve it to your friends and family. Show off that fluffy white head and clear golden beer.
You brewed this beer and it's great!!!!
What did your water profile look like? From the above it appears you went for Munich but it isn't explicit.
My water is a bit too alkaline for a beer this pale, but I can dilute it and get close to Munich with CaCl2.
First of all congrats on your first place accomplishment. I'm located in KS where are you located???(looked in your profile) I currently dillute with distilled as I haven't installed an RO filter system yet. I have been brewing for years and I've had trouble using gelatin, and I'm pretty sure its my process. I put it in post boiled water that is still warm and dump it into the secondary. When I have used it, the gell seams to be everywhere cooler like the sides of the fermenter,spoons and such. When I bottle the stuff is really stuck to the sides of the fermenter and I doubt much was in solution. I would love a little tutelage and any special tricks using this clarifier. This may sound funny but I am only now able to get clear beers and I would love to use Gelatin with better results.
Thanks and again congrats!
This is the system I have been using lately. It's from Northern Brewer's site.
Gelatin is an excellent clarifier for homebrewers. It's cheap, easy to get, removes tannins and chill haze... with no ill effects.
There's been some debate over how to use it. I talked to a VERY experienced pastry chef (my Grandma-in-law) and she said I've been doing it wrong. Here's what she said (for using granulated gelatin, not sheets);
Use a glass jar, and fill it with a cup or cup-and-a-half of tap water. Not hot or warm or cold.... just cool. About 70-80 degrees. Put 1-3 teaspoons of gelatin in there and let it sit for 20 minutes. Swirl it up good (it will be cloudy) and pop it into the microwave. Set it for about a minute, but you need to watch it and take it out as soon as it's clear. The glass will be warm.
She said if you try to dissolve it in hot water, it clumps up, and cold water won't soften it up like you want. Never boil it (unless that is in the recipe).
Well, there ya have it. I've tried it twice now and it works perfectly.
Thanks for the info on that. I'm thinking then you add the warm gelatin mixture when your beer has finished the 65 F diacetyl rest, right? You want the yeast to finish any fermenting and allow it to clean up any off flavors if it has to. Then add the gelatin when the beer is warmest, and then slowly drop the temperature back down allowing everything: the fermenter and beer and gelatin solution to be as close in temperature as possible. This seems to make good sense to me.... Thanks!
Yeast Starter Question
I'm very interested about the yeast starter and how you say activity is more important than number of cells. I brew lagers and have been trained to make 3-4L starters for a 5-gallon batch, cool, decant and then pitch. When you did the 1 L starter for 10 gallons, did you pitch a room temperature starter to the 51F wort? I would like to try this as making big starters several days in advance takes more time and effort, but I wanted to be sure of your process so I didn't muck up what could be a delicious batch of German beer.
Wow... since no one posted an answer I thought I would.... 3 to 4 liters of a starter for a 5 gallon batch is going way overboard. While you do normally want double the amount of lager cells when pitching compared to Ale cells. 4 liters is a gallon (basically) of a starter, in that volume a starter would alter the taste of your beer. Your yeast starter should be pitched into a similarly temped wort to avoid shocking and killing much of the yeast. (this might be why you or someone developed such a high volume of a starter) It can be room temp or cooler but the two should be similar, if the temp is above the ideal fermentation temp then after the yeast is pitched the temperature can be lowered, not crashed to an appropriate 53 F or so. Since lager yeast takes off a little slower what also really helps is O2 (1L/min in the fermenter for 5 gallons) and yeast nutrient added to the end of the boil, or to the fermenter if forgotten. This makes sure that the yeast has all the vitamins and minerals it needs so to speak. The O2, and yeast nutrient are to me more important than the make up of your water. There are many yeast pitcher calculators online google it and you can see the cell count you need for your planned volume of wort. I usually pitch a 2L starter for my 10 Gallon batches if using one package of Wyeast. Quick activity of the yeast is basically a homebrewers way of seeing how viable the yeast is. Quick activity is no substitute for cell count, however you will have quicker activity with a higher cell count, which is why makeing a starter and increasing the cell count is desired. "1L Yeast Active" in the recipe simplly means.... I think.... that the yeast starter (correct volume and cell count calculated) is activiely fermenting at its peak and you are seeing some krausen in the starter vessel... as opposed to making the starter ahead of time allowing it to almost finish or finish and then refridgerating it and waiting for brew day.
TMI I know but thats it. Hope it helps
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