Your favorite Kolsch recipe with 34/70 and American hops?

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bstacy1974

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Just picked up a bag of Great Western Superior Pilsen malt and would like to put together a Kolsch brew day this weekend.
Right now my recipe is...
Pilsen 95%
Light Munich 5%
Crystal hops 2oz @ 60mins

Water is RO with additions to achieve...
Ca: 45ppm
SO4: 38 ppm
Cl: 55 ppm

Yeast
Saflager 34/70

Hows this look?
Should I add a touch of wheat?
Would Liberty or Cluster work better for bittering?
 

michaeltrego

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A Kolsch yeast would be a better choice. I use WY2565 fermented at 60F and then lagered. I do use wheat in my recipe: 83% Pils, 10% Wheat, 7% Munich Light. Crystal hops are great in Kolsch too.
 

Gnomebrewer

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Recipe looks like a quite nice helles lager. As above, IMO it it's not kolsch yeast, it's not kolsch. I'd happily brew that recipe as is (no wheat) with any of the three hop choices.
 
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bstacy1974

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Unfortunately, I'm limited to dry yeast by my local shop. I'll check in tomorrow to see if they have any K97.
 

rhys333

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Just picked up a bag of Great Western Superior Pilsen malt and would like to put together a Kolsch brew day this weekend.
Right now my recipe is...
Pilsen 95%
Light Munich 5%
Crystal hops 2oz @ 60mins

Water is RO with additions to achieve...
Ca: 45ppm
SO4: 38 ppm
Cl: 55 ppm

Yeast
Saflager 34/70

Hows this look?
Should I add a touch of wheat?
Would Liberty or Cluster work better for bittering?

Recipe looks good. As others say, a kölsch strain would be ideal. K97 will get you there in a pinch, and you could even try kveik yeast. I've picked up kölsch aromas from the Voss strain.
 

SonomaBrewer

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Nothing like a fresh Kolsch beer in the summer! Looks like a great recipe but as others have pointed out not quite on style. Agree with using a Kolsch yeast, have had great results with 2565. Why American hops? Hallertau/Tettnang/Spalter are traditional choices.
 

monkeymath

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Don't fret the classification of yeast too much. Lots of people brew their Helles using WLP029 "German Ale", lots of people rage you couldn't call it a Helles if you're using an ale yeast. Turns out, the classification of yeasts is not always so simple, and WLP029 appears to be hard to put a label on. (This is just the upshot I got from some discussions on here by much more knowledgeable people.)
And if WLP029 might actually be called a lager yeast, and people are brewing Kölsch with it, then yes: you can brew a Kölsch using lager yeast.

Don't fret the classification of beers too much. Brew it, drink it, enjoy it. Call it a Pils, if you like. Call it a Kölsch, if you like. Call it a Helles, if you like. It won't change the beer.
 

Gnomebrewer

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Don't fret the classification of beers too much. Brew it, drink it, enjoy it. Call it a Pils, if you like. Call it a Kölsch, if you like. Call it a Helles, if you like. It won't change the beer.
If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck and swims like a duck, we'll call it a duck.
34/70 quacks like a lager, not a kolsch. Not that it can't be enjoyed for what it is.
 

Beermeister32

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Agreed - use a Kolsch yeast for a Kolsch.

W34/70 is a favorite of mine but if you want a Kolsch, use the right yeast. The W34/70 and 2 oz of hops will make the beer more of a Helles almost going on to a Pilsner.

Would be a great beer that way too!
 

ByrdMass

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I've used K97 like three times brewing Kolsch and I always get a lot of yeast expression (fruity esters). I tried playing around with ferm temp, but that character shows up every time I use it. Is this common?
The only Kolsch I've had is from New Glarus and it was very clean in my opinion, nothing at all like the ones I've brewed. I almost suspect S-189 fermented warm or US-05 fermented cooler would get you close to the New Glarus version.
 

Twinkeelfool

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Don't fret the classification of yeast too much. Lots of people brew their Helles using WLP029 "German Ale", lots of people rage you couldn't call it a Helles if you're using an ale yeast. Turns out, the classification of yeasts is not always so simple, and WLP029 appears to be hard to put a label on. (This is just the upshot I got from some discussions on here by much more knowledgeable people.)
And if WLP029 might actually be called a lager yeast, and people are brewing Kölsch with it, then yes: you can brew a Kölsch using lager yeast.

Don't fret the classification of beers too much. Brew it, drink it, enjoy it. Call it a Pils, if you like. Call it a Kölsch, if you like. Call it a Helles, if you like. It won't change the beer.
I love 029, it’s my house yeast for anything non Belgian or british. Great for hoppy beers too but I use 2565 if I want to brew a kolsch. I find 029 super clean and crisp, where 2565 gives that white wine kind of character to beers.
 

monkeymath

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What about Hefeweizen?
Only the breweries affiliated with the ruler were allowed to use wheat. It served a dual purpose of reserving wheat for baked goods and creating a state-owned monopoly on Hefeweizen.
And yes, it is dumb that you often find "In line with the Reinheitsgebot of 1516" on bottles of Hefeweizen.

Today, beer production is regulated by the "vorläufiges Biergesetz" (or "preliminary beer law"). This law is still often alluded to as "Reinheitsgebot" (a term which is itself of unclear origin). In particular, it allows the use of grains other than barley in ales, but not lagers. Therefore, wheat can be used in Kölsch, although it is not a typical ingredient.
 

Brooothru

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Don't fret the classification of yeast too much. Lots of people brew their Helles using WLP029 "German Ale", lots of people rage you couldn't call it a Helles if you're using an ale yeast. Turns out, the classification of yeasts is not always so simple, and WLP029 appears to be hard to put a label on. (This is just the upshot I got from some discussions on here by much more knowledgeable people.)
And if WLP029 might actually be called a lager yeast, and people are brewing Kölsch with it, then yes: you can brew a Kölsch using lager yeast.

Don't fret the classification of beers too much. Brew it, drink it, enjoy it. Call it a Pils, if you like. Call it a Kölsch, if you like. Call it a Helles, if you like. It won't change the beer.
WLP-029 "German/Kolsch Ale" is a very good choice. Supposedly the strain is from PJ Fruh brauerei in Koln which has been serving up the ultimate Kolsch for over 300 years.
 

bwible

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Strictly interpreted, the Reinhetsgebot allowed the use of barley, water and hops.
Didn't even include yeast! :D
They didn’t know about it. 1516 was about 300 years before Louis Pasteur. And Pasteur was ex-communicated for stepping on the church’s turf. Talking about invisible beings and all that.
 

burtom

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Reinheitsgebot or Purity Law as was probably stated above was only applicable to “beer” which was defined as brewed with bottom fermenting yeast/lager. I think ales were called ales and exempt.
 

couchsending

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A beer brewed with American ingredients and lager yeast is no Kolsch. I’m rather militant about Kolsch. That and Altbier are about as specific as it get when it comes to style. If you’re gonna make something and call it a Kolsch (or technically Kolsch style ale) make it with the correct ingredients or just call it something else.

What you’re making sounds like a great blonde ale.

Yes I know 34/70 is technically lager yeast but wlp029 is also genetically lager yeast if we’re splitting hairs.
 

Twinkeelfool

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Well if it’s not brewed in cologne it’s not a kolsh either 🤣. Anyway, personally style adherence doesn’t really bother me, as long as it tastes good
 

Brooothru

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A beer brewed with American ingredients and lager yeast is no Kolsch. I’m rather militant about Kolsch. That and Altbier are about as specific as it get when it comes to style. If you’re gonna make something and call it a Kolsch (or technically Kolsch style ale) make it with the correct ingredients or just call it something else.

What you’re making sounds like a great blonde ale.

Yes I know 34/70 is technically lager yeast but wlp029 is also genetically lager yeast if we’re splitting hairs.
Having spent a fair amount of time in both Dusseldorf and Koln, I have a fondness for both styles. On my "to brew" list this summer is one of each, so I'm dusting off some archived recipes I've brewed in the past. Mind sharing your favorite Kolsch recipe?
 

couchsending

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Having spent a fair amount of time in both Dusseldorf and Koln, I have a fondness for both styles. On my "to brew" list this summer is one of each, so I'm dusting off some archived recipes I've brewed in the past. Mind sharing your favorite Kolsch recipe?
I’ve got v19 of a Kolsch fermenting right now. V18 was my favorite so far. It was

Barke Pils
15% Cologne Malt
4% Carafoam

145/154/162/170

I think. I used sauergut for the mash and kettle pH adjustment. Fermented it with this East Coast Kolschbier strain at 64. Spunded it and lagered it for 4 weeks. I don’t remember the exact hops I used but most likely Perle at 70 and Tradition or Spalt at 10.

Present one is Ireks Pils and 15% Ireks Vienna with 2% Acidulated. Tradition at 70 and Spalt/Tradition at 10. Fermenting a bit colder at 62.
 

Brooothru

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Thanks for the recipe. I'm not familiar with Cologne malt. Similar to Carahell or Caravienne, or more like Light Munich?

Totally agree on the step mash temperatures, and especially the hops. Spalt and Perle definitely, and Tradition as well. Thinking WLP-029 for the Kolsch and either -036 or Imperial "Dieter" for the altbier.
 
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bstacy1974

bstacy1974

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Well, I guess I stirred the pot asking a simple question. Please don't take offense to this statement. We're all passionate about our homebrew and I really appreciate all the feedback.
Yes, it's true that it's not a true kolsch but I'm not entering this beer into competition, so it doesn't matter all that much. I take the position to classify my beers as they drink. So, if it drinks or taste more like a blonde after packaging, I'll call it a blonde.
Thanks for the suggestions for liquid yeast but I don't have access to liquid yeast locally. I'm limited to dry yeast. I probably should have said that up front.
I'm pretty sure others have suggested warm fermented 34/70 as a dry yeast alternative for a Kolsch. This was before Lallemand came out with a dry Kolsch yeast. Again, can't get it locally yet, so I was going with what I had in my inventory.
With that said, I was able to pick up some K-97. What's everyone's experience with this strain?
 

Brooothru

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Well, I guess I stirred the pot asking a simple question. Please don't take offense to this statement. We're all passionate about our homebrew and I really appreciate all the feedback.
Yes, it's true that it's not a true kolsch but I'm not entering this beer into competition, so it doesn't matter all that much. I take the position to classify my beers as they drink. So, if it drinks or taste more like a blonde after packaging, I'll call it a blonde.
Thanks for the suggestions for liquid yeast but I don't have access to liquid yeast locally. I'm limited to dry yeast. I probably should have said that up front.
I'm pretty sure others have suggested warm fermented 34/70 as a dry yeast alternative for a Kolsch. This was before Lallemand came out with a dry Kolsch yeast. Again, can't get it locally yet, so I was going with what I had in my inventory.
With that said, I was able to pick up some K-97. What's everyone's experience with this strain?
K-97 was derived from K-96, which was an ale sample archived at the Seibel Institute lab. K-96 is supposedly the isolated yeast strain used by the old Balentine Brewery in Baltimore (try saying that 5 times quickly).

The story goes that when Sierra Nevada was starting out early in the craft beer boom that they obtained a sample of K-97 from Seibel to use in SNPA, and thus the "Chico" strain was born.

If the story is accurate, then you're brewing a German hybrid beer with what has become one of the most versatile and ubiquitous ale yeasts known to mankind! Not saying it would be bad or good (though most likely it would be quite nice). The only downside would be getting full attenuation when fermenting an ale yeast at lager temperatures.

The recommended fermentation temperature for K-97 is as low as 59F, but it's actual low end temperature is 54F, so anywhere in between those two temperatures should work without stalling out on you. 55F-56F would be my choice, but be willing to wait it out to make sure fermentation is complete before packaging.
 

couchsending

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K-97 was derived from K-96, which was an ale sample archived at the Seibel Institute lab. K-96 is supposedly the isolated yeast strain used by the old Balentine Brewery in Baltimore (try saying that 5 times quickly).

The story goes that when Sierra Nevada was starting out early in the craft beer boom that they obtained a sample of K-97 from Seibel to use in SNPA, and thus the "Chico" strain was born.

If the story is accurate, then you're brewing a German hybrid beer with what has become one of the most versatile and ubiquitous ale yeasts known to mankind! Not saying it would be bad or good (though most likely it would be quite nice). The only downside would be getting full attenuation when fermenting an ale yeast at lager temperatures.

The recommended fermentation temperature for K-97 is as low as 59F, but it's actual low end temperature is 54F, so anywhere in between those two temperatures should work without stalling out on you. 55F-56F would be my choice, but be willing to wait it out to make sure fermentation is complete before packaging.
I think you have your yeasts mixed up.

K-97 is the dry form of 1007.

I think you’re thinking of Bry-97, Bry-96. Bry-96 is the supposed source of Chico.

If you want the old Ballantine strain your can but it from East Coast Yeast. It’s called Old Newark Ale, and it’s awesome. Faster, fruitier, and more flocculent than Chico. Doesn’t mask hops. Makes hazy beer and crystal clear beer with ease.
 

Brooothru

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I think you have your yeasts mixed up.

K-97 is the dry form of 1007.

I think you’re thinking of Bry-97, Bry-96. Bry-96 is the supposed source of Chico.

If you want the old Ballantine strain your can but it from East Coast Yeast. It’s called Old Newark Ale, and it’s awesome. Faster, fruitier, and more flocculent than Chico. Doesn’t mask hops. Makes hazy beer and crystal clear beer with ease.
Yeah, workin' from memory that's not as solid as in days gone by. Conflating and flatulence are the two banes of those of us "of a certain age."
 

odie

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Dry kolsch yeast is available. Well that's what my stuff is labeled as. An alternative would be K-97, A German ale yeast. Kolsch is a German ale fermented at lager temperatures.

The "cologne malt" mentioned above kinda sounds like "kolsch malt". Weyermann has it and maybe a couple other European malters. I scored a 55lb sack a couple years ago. Likely I will never again see kolsch malt in the US for a long time :(
 

Brooothru

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Dry kolsch yeast is available. Well that's what my stuff is labeled as. An alternative would be K-97, A German ale yeast. Kolsch is a German ale fermented at lager temperatures.

The "cologne malt" mentioned above kinda sounds like "kolsch malt". Weyermann has it and maybe a couple other European malters. I scored a 55lb sack a couple years ago. Likely I will never again see kolsch malt in the US for a long time :(
I found several Cologne and Heidelberg style malts with an online search. Not as common as other malts from German maltsters, but it's very light and probably is the perfect grain for brewing a Kolsch.
 

couchsending

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I found several Cologne and Heidelberg style malts with an online search. Not as common as other malts from German maltsters, but it's very light and probably is the perfect grain for brewing a Kolsch.
The malt I’m referring to is from Weyermann. It’s specially called Cologne malt and is pretty darn close to Vienna.

The dried Kolsch yeast from Lallemand blows. It requires twice as much yeast cause the cell count is so low per gram.

I disagree that Kolsch needs to be fermented cold. I believe most Commercial Kolsch is fermented in the mid to low 60s. I know the most awarded Kolsch brewed in the US is fermented at 65 (Chuckanut). It should be lagered for extended period if time but a cold fermented profile is some sort of myth in my mind.
 

Brooothru

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The malt I’m referring to is from Weyermann. It’s specially called Cologne malt and is pretty darn close to Vienna.

The dried Kolsch yeast from Lallemand blows. It requires twice as much yeast cause the cell count is so low per gram.

I disagree that Kolsch needs to be fermented cold. I believe most Commercial Kolsch is fermented in the mid to low 60s. I know the most awarded Kolsch brewed in the US is fermented at 65 (Chuckanut). It should be lagered for extended period if time but a cold fermented profile is some sort of myth in my mind.
I did find the Weyermann Cologne after a web search.it looks like it could be utilized at 100% of the mash, but a blend with another German base grain plus some acid and/or carapils would add depth. Good point on the fermentation temperature: ferment like a low ester ale, extended cold condition like a lager.

I'm psyched and ready, though family plans will probably put the brew session off until after the 4th of July.
 
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