Bayou Beer

All about beer brewing and drinking in South Louisiana.

German Pilsner 1.5 Gallon Attempt B

May 20th, 2016

Given the first attempt was more shaking out the bugs in the new brewing system this will be drastically different than the first. Switched to Saaz in this recipe because I initially intended to use Saaz but couldn’t find any in my freezer. In this second attempt everything is larger. The boil volume is 3 gallons with the hope of getting 2 in the fermenter.

On a side note I got my torpedo keg in from Morebeer. Man it’s a nice little thing. Interesting enough the keg says 1.6 gallons even though the Morebeer website lists it as 1.5 gallons.

Recipe Details

Batch Size Boil Time IBU SRM Est. OG Est. FG ABV
2.3 gal 70 min 37.2 IBUs 4.6 SRM 1.048 1.009 5.1 %

Style Details

Name Cat. OG Range FG Range IBU SRM Carb ABV
German Pils 5 D 1.044 - 1.05 1.008 - 1.013 22 - 40 2 - 5 2.5 - 3.2 4.4 - 5.2 %

Fermentables

Name Amount %
Pilsner (2 Row) Ger 4 lbs 96.97
Melanoidin (Weyermann) 2 oz 3.03

Hops

Name Amount Time Use Form Alpha %
Saaz 1 oz 70 min Boil Pellet 3.8
Hallertauer 0.13 oz 0 min Aroma Pellet 2.4

Miscs

Name Amount Time Use Type
Lactic Acid 4.00 ml 60 min Mash Water Agent
Calcium Chloride 2.00 g 60 min Mash Water Agent
Gypsum (Calcium Sulfate) 2.00 g 60 min Mash Water Agent

Yeast

Name Lab Attenuation Temperature
German Lager (WLP830) White Labs 77% 50°F - 55°F

Mash

Step Temperature Time
Mash In 150°F 75 min

German Pilsner 1.5 Gallon Attempt A

May 14th, 2016

So this will be my first go at brewing 1.5 gallon batches of beer. Lately I’ve had an interesting go of it with brewing beers I’ve not perfected yet. American stout and American porter came out mediocre at best. I straight dumped about 8 gallons of the stout because to me it was undrinkable. My 10 gallons of German pilsner were very nice and a great lager but I want world class. I mean hell who wants to drink 8 gallons of great lager when you want great German pilsner? So I’m going to try my hand at small batches. It’ll allow me to do induction brewing in my beer room with air conditioning. It’ll allow me to take up less room and not have to waste so much if it doesn’t end up well. Most importantly it’ll allow me quick turnover to perfect some of these recipes that require very honed in recipes and practices.

So I’d already built a small mash tun for single infusion brewing. It’s a 5 gallon water cooler. I purchased a 5 gallon induction ready pot off Amazon. Also picked up a 1800 watt induction cook top on Amazon. I already had a couple of 3 gallon better bottles I purchased a few years back to small brew lager batches. I think this small scale will give me good feedback on new recipes. It’ll also allow me to brew in the air conditioning and do it quickly. Time is always tight with kids.

This will be German pilsner rebrew of the recipe I brewed a few months back. Feedback from 2 different judging sessions was scattered at best. From what I can tell it needed improvement in two places. 1. It wasn’t bitter enough or hoppy enough. So Going to give it late hops and a bit more bitterness. 2. Improve maltiness yet make it dry. So adding a tad of melanoidin malt. Also going to make it a bit more carbonated to impress dryness since the last beer was dry enough as far as gravity was concerned.

Update 5/17/2016

So the brew day went very smooth in terms of process. I did have a few issues in regards to volume. The volume ended up a little low due to my Beersmith equipment profile being off in the calculations. The beer will be pretty close in it’s original gravity at 1.05 but I’ll be lucky to end up with a gallon. I suppose I didn’t think about the loss to trub and the boil off not being linear things when scaling down to a 1.5 gallon batch. So we’ll see how this guy ends up but I’ve already concocted the Attempt B to try again.

All in all it was a lot of fun to brew in the air conditioning with the control of the electric cook tops and the small size, weight and cost. I ordered a 1.5 gallon Torpedo keg from Morebeer.com and am looking forward to trying that out. Hoping to end up with a stack of 4 of those kegs in my kegerator along side 3 regular rotating beers so that I can experiment without having to waste or choking down a bad beer.

Recipe Details

Batch Size Boil Time IBU SRM Est. OG Est. FG ABV
1.8 gal 60 min 38.8 IBUs 4.8 SRM 1.045 1.009 4.8 %

Style Details

Name Cat. OG Range FG Range IBU SRM Carb ABV
German Pils 5 D 1.044 - 1.05 1.008 - 1.013 22 - 40 2 - 5 2.5 - 3.2 4.4 - 5.2 %

Fermentables

Name Amount %
Pilsner (2 Row) Ger 3 lbs 96
Melanoidin (Weyermann) 2 oz 4

Hops

Name Amount Time Use Form Alpha %
Hallertauer Hersbrucker 0.55 oz 60 min Boil Pellet 6
Hallertauer 0.13 oz 0 min Aroma Pellet 4.8

Miscs

Name Amount Time Use Type
Lactic Acid 4.00 ml 60 min Mash Water Agent
Calcium Chloride 2.00 g 60 min Mash Water Agent
Gypsum (Calcium Sulfate) 2.00 g 60 min Mash Water Agent

Yeast

Name Lab Attenuation Temperature
German Lager (WLP830) White Labs 77% 50°F - 55°F

Mash

Step Temperature Time
Mash In 150°F 75 min

German Pilsner

January 17th, 2016

I always love brewing lagers when it’s cold. Living in South Louisiana it just seems easier to manage lager fermentation when it’s cold and the beer will be ready in time to start the Summer. So…given that some of the 2016 Bayou State Circuit homebrew competitions are sporting German Pilsner I went with that one. I decided to do 10 gallons and vary the yeast. One will be the bock strain of WLP833 while the other will be WLP830 or simply “German Lager Yeast”. I chose to go with straight Magnum because in the past when brewing this sort of beer I got comments concerning the beer being too hoppy. I suspect this is due to judges being used to trying pilsners which were not fresh from shipping across the ocean. We’ll see! The grain bill was simply Weyermann Pilsner malt which is supposed to be great for this.

The brew day went fine although the gravity was coming in a little high so I adjusted with tap water. Pitched the yeast in the very yellow wort. Fermenting at about 50F. Hopefully it comes out great because the wort tasted very nice.

Following this I’ll be using the yeast for schwarzbier and finally doppelbock.

Update 2/6/2016
The WLP830 version ended up being the best pilsner I’ve ever brewed. Professional quality clear, crisp, refreshing and drinkable by the liter. Very delicate with a fine head. The WLP833 is also better than any other pilsner I’ve ever brewed before but just a tad less clear and not quite as spot on for pilsner as the WLP830. So next time I brew this beer it’ll be the WLP830 along with some other like WLP838 Southern German Lager for example.

Update 4/7/2016
So much to my disappointment this beer didn’t place with comments being it needed more bitterness. Scoring was 37 on the points scale which is a win and still the only 30+ pilsner score I ever received so I’m happy about that. Point of this update is next time add more hopping. Possibly a small late hop addition.(although topping up 10% with water probably dropped bitterness some also) It was also commented that the carbonation should’ve been higher for a pilsner. Perhaps that contributed to the lower perceived bitterness. Carbonation will be the next issue I tackle since my beer comes out the kegs perfectly carbonated by transferring via the beer gun appears to lose some of that. So this beer only needs a very minor recipe tweak and I need to tune my carbonation to bottling process.

Recipe Details

Batch Size Boil Time IBU SRM Est. OG Est. FG ABV
12 gal 90 min 35.6 IBUs 3.9 SRM 1.049 1.010 5.1 %

Style Details

Name Cat. OG Range FG Range IBU SRM Carb ABV
German Pils 5 D 1.044 - 1.05 1.008 - 1.013 22 - 40 2 - 5 2.5 - 3.2 4.4 - 5.2 %

Fermentables

Name Amount %
Pilsner (2 Row) Ger 25 lbs 100

Hops

Name Amount Time Use Form Alpha %
Magnum 2 oz 45 min Boil Pellet 12

Miscs

Name Amount Time Use Type
Lactic Acid 8.00 ml 60 min Mash Water Agent

Yeast

Name Lab Attenuation Temperature
German Bock Lager (WLP833) White Labs 73% 48°F - 55°F
German Lager (WLP830) White Labs 77% 50°F - 55°F

Mash

Step Temperature Time
Mash In 148°F 75 min
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