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Old 05-27-2008, 10:00 PM   #1
benko
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Default Advice on improving my hefeweizen.

Just bottled my first hefeweizen today, and am pretty happy with the results. I used the Wyeast Weihenstephan yeast, and the flavor was great. I was hoping you guys had some thoughts on two issues.

My setup usually gets around 75% efficiency. On this batch, I only got 65%. I used 6 lbs weyermann wheat, 4 lbs durst pilsener and .5 lbs rice hulls. Mashed ~75 minutes at 153 degrees. Do you think the lower efficiency was due to lack of a protein rest?

Second, although the taste is great, I would like it to have slightly more of a malt backbone and maybe a touch sweeter and darker. I was thinking of going with the exact same recipe, plus a pound of Munich. What do you guys think?


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Old 05-27-2008, 10:24 PM   #2
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Not sure about the efficiency, but if you want a maltier sweet taste you'd want to do a decoction.


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Old 05-27-2008, 10:35 PM   #3
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For additional sweetness you need to reduce the hops.

Unless it's a Dunkel Weizen why do you want it darker?
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Old 05-28-2008, 12:25 AM   #4
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A Hefeweisen is supposed to be light and not too sweet by it's very nature. If you want a different beer then it is not a Hefeweisen any more. Wheat makes the beer thin and refreshing. Malt makes more body and Vienna can make it sweeter. So less wheat, more malt, and add some Vienna, a slight scant touch of pale chocolate for darker.
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Old 05-28-2008, 12:35 AM   #5
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That is the great thing about homebrewing, you can adjust the beer to your taste. If you want something maltier, follow WBC's advice. If style calls it a dunkel, then so be it. To you it will be a great beer.
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Old 05-28-2008, 05:18 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WBC View Post
A Hefeweisen is supposed to be light and not too sweet by it's very nature. If you want a different beer then it is not a Hefeweisen any more. Wheat makes the beer thin and refreshing. Malt makes more body and Vienna can make it sweeter. So less wheat, more malt, and add some Vienna, a slight scant touch of pale chocolate for darker.
American wheats tend to be thin with lemon and other nonsense in them. German wheats on the other hand... I would not describe them as thin per say. I would also say that a good German wheat does fall on the sweeter side. And if his wheat was that off yellow color that Widmeyer tends to have, then yes, I would also want to darken the color to a nice orange. I would say, depending on how his Hef came out, his adjustments are not going to move his beer out of the Hefeweizen style...
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Old 05-28-2008, 12:56 PM   #7
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I too used to get lower efficiency on my hefeweizens. Wheat berries are smaller and harder (generally) than barley. Since I got my own mill and started double-milling the wheat (once by itself, then again with the barley) my efficiency has improved dramatically, 83% on my last batch. If you have control over the milling of your grain, give that a shot.

I do a step (infusion) mash on my hefe's 111 to 152 to 168.

Before you do anything drastic to get the maltiness you're after try increasing the percentage of barley. I go with 50/50 German Pils/German Wheat.

I also boil my hefe's pretty hard to give them a little more color and increase the melanoidins.
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Old 05-29-2008, 10:32 AM   #8
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Toss some 6 row in the mix, the high enzyme content can increase your efficiency
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Old 05-29-2008, 11:01 AM   #9
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Munich would be OK if that's what your looking for. Not too much or you'll have a Dunkelweizen. Try adding a lb of carapils. The mouthfeel that you get from it does nice things to a Hefe...
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Old 05-29-2008, 02:38 PM   #10
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Thanks for all the great input. Looks like I have a few things to try out.


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