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Old 09-19-2006, 12:19 PM   #1
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I'm thinking it may be almost time to do my first lager. My basement will soon be at a steady 55 degrees, and I built an igloo cooler lagering vessel. It's a 60 qt cooler with wheels, and a homemade layered styrofoam top to allow the airlock to poke out. With water and bottles of ice, I can keep a steady temperature in the basement.

My husband found the following recipe. What do you guys think? I've never made a maibock before, but it's one of my favorite styles. Would this be true to style?

Ray's Maibock:
Crush grains and steep in 1/2 gal water @ 170 F for 20 minutes.
1 lb. (.45kg) Carapils malt
1 lb. (.45kg) Toasted 2-row pale malt (350 F for 10 minutes)
4 oz. (113g) German light crystal malt (20 L)
Strain the water from the grains into your brewpot. Sparge with 1/2 gal water @ 170 F. Add water to bring volume to 1.5 gal and bring to boil. Remove pot from heat and add:
6.6 lb. (3kg) Ireks German light malt extract
1.5 lb. (.69kg) Extra Light DME
1.5 oz (43g) Perle hop pellets (8.5 AA)
Add water to bring volume to 2.5 gal and boil for 45 minutes and add:
2.0 oz (56g) Mt. Hood hop pellets (3.2 AA)
1.0 tsp. (5ml) Irish Moss
Boil for 15 minutes. Remove pot from heat and add:
1 oz (28 g) Mt. Hood pellets
Let steep for 10 minutes (aroma hops). Chill wort and pitch 1 liter of yeast starter:
Wyeast 2206 Bavarian Lager
Primary ferment @ 50 F for 12 days. Raise temp to 60 F for 2 days (Diacetyl Rest). Rack to secondary @ 55 F for 12 days. Slowly lower temp (5 degrees per day) to 35 F and "lager" for 4 weeks.
OG 1.066 FG 1.014 ABV 6.6% IBU 38 SRM 6 (deep golde
n)

All advice would be greatly appreciated-

Lorena


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Old 09-19-2006, 12:34 PM   #2
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Mmmm...if I could do lagers, the very first thing I'd try would be a Maibock. I attempted it sans lagering, and it was not so good. I have no advice to give you other than to make sure that when you bottle, one of those bottles ends up at my house.



 
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Old 09-19-2006, 01:12 PM   #3
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I've made what is basically a "steamaibock" before - a maibock that isn't technically lagered. Unlike ayrton, mine turned out quite nice. The only major characteristic that distinguished it from a true lagered maibock were the subtle fruity esters...which aren't supposed to be a part of a true maibock, but it is still one very tasty beer.

Let us know how your lagering system works. Someday, I'll try that, when I can figure out a good way to maintain such low temps.
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Old 09-19-2006, 02:08 PM   #4
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well good luck lorenae. Hopefully this fall and winter Ill be able to give my first attempt at a lager a go as well.
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Old 09-19-2006, 03:05 PM   #5
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I'm no style freak, but it looks a little high in IBUs, read about it here.

You'll love the flavor that you get from toasting your own grain. Looks like a tasty spring time at your place!
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Old 09-19-2006, 03:55 PM   #6
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Once you've finished fermenting it, what are you going to do for the lagering phase? Ice bags won't keep it a low enough temperatures, and you'll need to do it for a few months 24/7

 
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Old 09-20-2006, 11:39 AM   #7
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For the lager, my pantry is cold. Not cold enough to lager right now, but cold enough to get a great start with fermentation. Then, I have an extra chest freezer (if it's not full of venison by then) that I can use. Otherwise, I will be using the ice/water in the igloo. It will keep it at 35 degrees as long as I change the bottles every two or three days. My pantry/root cellar does not have any temperature fluctuations once it's cold and it's 55 degrees in there until about December, then it gradually gets in the high 40s and stays there until about May. It's unheated and separate from the rest of the basement. So, I thought I could start the maibock when the basement is around 55 degrees, bring it upstairs for the diacetyl rest, then back to the pantry and put in the igloo with water and ice bottles.

I don't think I will be able to do ales for much longer. My "bottle conditioning room" (also known as a laundry room) is now only 63 degrees and it'll be dropping as it gets colder. We keep our house pretty frosty (62 degrees in the living areas) in the winter, and I can't imagine that my husband will permit me to crank up the heat to 70 just to make my ales! So, I think lager is my only possibility.

Lorena
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Old 09-20-2006, 01:57 PM   #8
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Well I hope he realizes that lagers take three times as long! He may forgive a space heater... A lightbulb on in a closet works too.


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