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flyangler18

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Picked up a vial of Dusseldorf Alt yeast (WLP036) a few weeks ago, and I've been reading Horst D. Dornbusch's most excellent book on Altbier to give myself the requisite knowledge to brew this style. Here's a recipe that I have in process as an exercise in old German styles - the usual C/C wanted.

My biggest question is the inclusion of 60L in this recipe, because I'm not certain that it's a wise addition in terms of style and intended profile. I'm hoping for a firmly bitter, rich and malty ale that is worthy of the name.

I present to you:

[size=+2]Wildschwein Alt[/size]
[size=+1]7-C Düsseldorf Altbier[/size]
Author: Jason Konopinski
Date: 3/27/09



Size: 5.5 gal
Efficiency: 80%
Attenuation: 72%
Calories: 173.1 kcal per 12.0 fl oz

Original Gravity: 1.052 (1.046 - 1.054)
|===================#============|
Terminal Gravity: 1.015 (1.010 - 1.015)
|======================#=========|
Color: 14.77 (11.0 - 17.0)
|==================#=============|
Alcohol: 4.89% (4.5% - 5.2%)
|================#===============|
Bitterness: 47.9 (35.0 - 50.0)
|=====================#==========|

[size=+1]Ingredients:[/size]
5 lb Pilsner Malt
4.5 lb German Dark Munich
8 oz Crystal 60
3.0 oz Pale Chocolate
1 oz Galena (13.0%) - added during boil, boiled 60 min
.5 oz Tettnanger (4.5%) - added during boil, boiled 15 min
1.0 ea White Labs WLP036 Dusseldorf Alt

[size=+1]Schedule:[/size]
00:03:00 Dough-In - Liquor: 3.0 gal; Strike: 161.87 °F; Target: 149 °F
01:33:00 Saccharification Rest - Rest: 90 min; Final: 149.0 °F
02:03:00 Lautering - First Runnings: 0.0 gal sparge @ 145 °F, 10.0 min; Sparge #1: 2.94 gal sparge @ 180 °F, 10.0 min; Sparge #2: 2.94 gal sparge @ 180 °F, 10.0 min; Total Runoff: 7.87 gal

[size=-1]Results generated by BeerTools Pro 1.5.2[/size]
 

McKBrew

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I've been reading the BJCP guidelines a bit recently and took a look at the style guidelines for this. I think the 60L in a lesser quantity to adjust color, but without plugging it into BTP myself I'm not sure how a 4-6oz amount would affect color. Good luck on the beer.

From the 2008 BJCP Style Guidelines:

Ingredients: Grists vary, but usually consist of German base malts (usually Pils, sometimes Munich) with small amounts of crystal, chocolate, and/or black malts used to adjust color. Occasionally will include some wheat. Spalt hops are traditional, but other noble hops can also be used. Moderately carbonate water. Clean, highly attenuative ale yeast. A step mash or decoction mash program is traditional.
 

Saccharomyces

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DGB says most NHC second round Alts used crystal and on average it was 10% of the grist. With 5% I think you are fine. I would use Caramunich rather than C60 but that is my preference.

If you have the ability to step mash, do it... :)

Pitch lots of yeast (I'm sure you will) and ferment at 60*F. This yeast is a slow fermenter, talking to a local commercial brewer who started using this yeast to produce an Alt he says a very high pitching rate is the key to getting it to attenuate in 5-6 days. He then crash cools to drop out the yeast and gives it extra time to condition.
 

pjj2ba

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I personally am not a fan of so much crystal in an Alt (mine has none). The first Alts I ever had were in Dussdeldorf so that is what I really want. I personally find the Alts in the US to be too caramelly sweet. BJCP guidelines say this is OK, but I don't recall it in the versions I had there. The biggest differences between the breweries was the bitterness levels. I found most of the beers fairly dry, but malty - not caramelly sweet. I've been meaning to pick up Dornbusch's book to see what he says on this.

I'm actually disappointed in the Uerige Alt available here in the US. It is very different from what I remember (I'll have to go back soon to refresh my memory). The bottled version is much sweeter. I actually just had it this past weekend from a cask that a local bar managed to get ahold of. This was even sweeter!
 
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flyangler18

flyangler18

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DGB says most NHC second round Alts used crystal and on average it was 10% of the grist. With 5% I think you are fine. I would use Caramunich rather than C60 but that is my preference.
Caramunich would have been my choice as well, but I didn't have any on hand when I was constructing this recipe. A trip to the LHBS to use my giftcard may be in order this afternoon. :mug:

I think I may brew this version as written then using Caramunich in its stead to compare the two.
 

ohiobrewtus

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That reminds me that I need to post my recipe for this. I think your recipe looks good as is. Brew it and see how it turns out. If it's to sweet or to dark, well then you have a built in reason to brew it again with a couple tweaks. :D

I did 7# pils, 2# Munich, 2# Vienna, 1# caramunich, 2 oz. Carafa III for 6 gallons.
 

jezter6

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If you remember my recipe from the DC/MD/PA brewday thread, this looks quite similar. We used 1.25# caramunich for the 10g batch, but had a slight bit of wheat and 0.5# carafa for coloring, and it turned out super.

I'd be interested to see what cugel says about this, because he thought mine was too hoppy at 39 IBU.

Edit: the way that sounds, the wheat is used for coloring, but it's just for some mouthfeel/head retention.
 
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flyangler18

flyangler18

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I'd be interested to see what cugel says about this, because he thought mine was too hoppy at 39 IBU.
From what I recall of your recipe, it had lots of late hop additions so I would agree with cugel on that point; I'm making a distinction between bitterness and too much hop character - what I would call 'hoppiness'.
 

Reverend JC

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Could a person get rid of the caramel if they did a decoction. I would think that would create the kettle carmelization without the "sweetness" from the caramel malts.

Plus, I bet that is how it is traditionally done in deutchland.
 

jezter6

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From what I recall of your recipe, it had lots of late hop additions so I would agree with cugel on that point; I'm making a distinction between bitterness and too much hop character - what I would call 'hoppiness'.
It was 60-45-20-10, which isn't much different than your 60-15, but I'll agree that it's much more balanced additions of bitterness throughout to give a full hop flavor instead of straight bitterness.

The good thing is we're still gonna brew it in May, so we'll have to plan a July/August brew to sample it, hopefully we both have some left by then.
 
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flyangler18

flyangler18

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Just doughed in with the recipe as written - I'll be sure to take copious notes for future comparison.

I don't think 5% C60 will make it too sweet, but time will tell. Mashing now at 149°.
 
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flyangler18

flyangler18

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Dang, now I'm jonesin' for a Sticke Alt after reading that thread... somebody brought one to the last brew club meeting and it was divine! :rockin:
Glad I could help, Eric. ;)

It's a lovely sunny albeit slightly chilly day here in PA - but a brew day just the same!
 

Cugel

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From what I recall of your recipe, it had lots of late hop additions so I would agree with cugel on that point; I'm making a distinction between bitterness and too much hop character - what I would call 'hoppiness'.
Jezter, I was commenting/whining about the late hop additions, not the overall hoppiness of your alt as flyangler pointed out.
 
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flyangler18

flyangler18

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Just went down into the basement to toss in a load of laundry - lovely rich malty aroma from the fermenting Alt. This one's gonna be good. :D
 

SpanishCastleAle

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Just curious; is this a really low-attenuating yeast? If I did that mash schedule with that grain bill I would normally expect a significantly lower FG than 1.015 from 1.052.
 

SpanishCastleAle

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I'd still expect lower FG with my process/equipment/etc....but everybody's is different. Even if I use yeasts that Wyeast/White claim to be low-ish attenuators...if I were to mash a similar grain bill @ 149 F I'd prob expect 1.010-1.012 max FG from 1.052 (but I am not that familiar with dark Munich either). But you know your process/equipment so I'm sure it'll end where you want...was just curious.:)
 
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flyangler18

flyangler18

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Just pulled a sample a few moments ago and I'm quite satisfied with this recipe. At two weeks after pitching, it is quite green but the maltiness and bitterness already balanced. A pleasant and subtle hop nose and flavor, rich maltiness. Restrained esters from the cool fermentation temperature. 5% C60 worked quite nicely in this beer.

A deep copper, already quite bright with no secondary finings. I'll leave it on the yeast for another two weeks, then off to the keg for cold-conditioning.

I'm pleased. :D
 

SpanishCastleAle

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Did you end up making it just like the recipe in the op? An Alt is coming up on my 'to brew' list soon. How's the attenuation?

EDIT:
Just doughed in with the recipe as written...
reding comprenshun ftl.
 

BrewDey

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I brewed the Kaiser's Alt last saturday, and it yeilded a huge kreusen that has yet to totally fall...not sure if it's all the Munich or what. I also had a few problems with the mash temp (trying to step mash)...bulk of the time it was in the low 140s. Not sure if that could have something to do with it-but I've never seen such a persistent kreusen.
 
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flyangler18

flyangler18

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Did you use the WLP036? That strain takes on the consistency of pancake batter rafting on the surface of the beer - it thinks it's Belgian. :drunk:
 

BrewDey

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Did you use the WLP036? That strain takes on the consistency of pancake batter rafting on the surface of the beer - it thinks it's Belgian. :drunk:
No..it was wyeast 1007. It's still 'bubbly' too. When I scooted the carboy over to make room, big chunks/strands of it fell to the bottom. Kinda weird, but hopefully it's OK.
 

ExMachina

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Here's some info form the brewmaster at Zum Uerige....

Brews & Views Bulletin Board Service: Zum Uerige revealed
(yup, resurrecting an old thread :cross:)

So is the recipe linked above correct?? It seems to be missing a good bit of malt to hit the OG (at least for a 5gal batch) and every alt recipe I've ever run across has had a dose of Munich malt. As it is presented, it seems more like a light-bodied, tinted Kolsch...

Does have the New Brewer issue to confirm?
 

Denny

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(yup, resurrecting an old thread :cross:)

So is the recipe linked above correct?? It seems to be missing a good bit of malt to hit the OG (at least for a 5gal batch) and every alt recipe I've ever run across has had a dose of Munich malt. As it is presented, it seems more like a light-bodied, tinted Kolsch...

Does have the New Brewer issue to confirm?
Why, yes, I do. ;) What I quoted was word for word what Dr. Frank Hebb (sp?) said in the article. BTW, you have to be a coommercial brewing member of the BA to get New Brewer, so I don't know if anyone else here would have it.
 
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(yup, resurrecting an old thread :cross:)

So is the recipe linked above correct?? It seems to be missing a good bit of malt to hit the OG (at least for a 5gal batch) and every alt recipe I've ever run across has had a dose of Munich malt. As it is presented, it seems more like a light-bodied, tinted Kolsch...

Does have the New Brewer issue to confirm?
I spoke with the brewer at Fuchschen in Dusseldorf. They use about 90% pilsner, 2% carafa, some accidulated malt, and some other minute grain additions that he didn't mention. Looks a lot like the recipe that Denny posted. And they use open fermentors!

More info / pics here if interested.
 

Denny

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I spoke with the brewer at Fuchschen in Dusseldorf. They use about 90% pilsner, 2% carafa, some accidulated malt, and some other minute grain additions that he didn't mention. Looks a lot like the recipe that Denny posted. And they use open fermentors!

More info / pics here if interested.
The use of Munich malt in alt seems to be an American invention.
 

ExMachina

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Why, yes, I do. ;) What I quoted was word for word what Dr. Frank Hebb (sp?) said in the article. BTW, you have to be a coommercial brewing member of the BA to get New Brewer, so I don't know if anyone else here would have it.
Thanks for confirming. Still highly skeptical that 6lbs of grist is the full story (and I'm not saying that you're holding back ;). To yield 5gal of wort in the range of 1.044-1.052 would demand a mash efficiency of 97-114% :drunk:

Interesting to see some consensus among modern German Alt brewers to use lighter kilned malts as the bulk of their grist; wonder how much of that practice can be traced back to the early days of Altbier?
 
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