Bayou Beer

All about beer brewing and drinking in South Louisiana.

Marzen 2017 – Gordon Biersch Sorta

August 12th, 2017

So we’re brewing Oktoberfest/Marzen.   Probably one of my absolute favorite beers that I’ve never brewed exceptional.    So I’ve really put some work in to this one.  My past attempts were always too high on toasted maltiness and not smooth enough.   The malt complexity was also never there.   So I am trying a few things today.  1.  Adding some purified water to drop my 174ppm sodium down under 100.   I’ve always thought too much sodium simplifies the maltiness of beer.   2.   Perform a single decoction to enhance melanoidin richness.  3.  Using a recipe that doesn’t call for so much Munich 20 or higher.  It should be on the bottom end of the Marzen spectrum rather than the middle which is what I typically brewed in the past and didn’t like.

This is sorta the recipe because come brew day I realize my Hallertau is only 2.5% AA so I had some Saaz to balance that.  And lengthen the hop boil to 90 minutes.

Lagers as it turns out are my favorite sort of beer.   With the exception of doing a doppelbock well in the past I’ve yet to brew one that’ll win at competitions.   35-39 pretty consistently but nothing with that extra special something yet.   Here’s hoping this year is the year I get it right.   We shall see.

Update 8/13/2017

Brew day went well. The decoction wasn’t near the trouble I thought it’d be with what I’ve read. Gravity came in high though and some equipment problems with a clogged pump near the boiling point made the boil a little strange. All in all the beer should come out fine. Some how, some way some old hops ended up in the beer so I’m worried about off flavors but we’ll see. Wort smells great, tastes great so cooling to pitching temperature overnight, re-racking off settled trub and pitching in the morning.

I’ve read some brulosophy and other experiments that say people can’t detect the decoction. I’m amazed at that given the aroma of the boiling decoction. It was strongly aromatic. I start to wonder about some of those experiments. They almost always seem to point at people being unable to detect anything about a beer in a triangle test unless it’s blatantly obvious. I wonder if the very nature of triangle tests throws people off enough that they can’t perform?

Update 9/5/2017
Original gravity which I forgot to note was 1.063. Final gravity was around 1.015 which although slightly high for style is expected because of the high original gravity. It’s quite malty and bready in the nose and in the flavor. Very complex. The hops are enough to balance the beer but I had preconceived notions of it being sweet so I think I find it sweet. It’s not yet carbonated to style so I need to give it more time before judging. However the beer is very good. The yeast character, the nose, the rich malt character. Gonna be a great drinking beer for the Fall months.

Update 9/27/2017
Now that it’s well carbonated and clear it’s got a really nice drinkability. Not dry enough but not so sweet that I can’t drink 3 of it in one sitting, which is my primary test on a beer. It’s deep in color for that Amber Marzen type of beer. Too much so for my overall appreciation of this style. On the next go I intend to adjust the pilsner to munich ratio by about 10% and drop the caramunich to only about 6 ounces per 10 gallons. I think the crispness was off by the higher gravity which hopefully I’ll get closer next time. But this is a good lager with German lager character, deep maltiness and a very fun, drinkable Fall beer.

Update 10/6/2017
I’ve picked up a few authentic seasonals to compare it to. Hacker-Pschorr Oktoberfest and Ayinger Oktoberfest are very similar to this beer. A little more crisp than mine but very similar indeed. Remarkably close to the Ayinger but with a less sweet nose than Ayinger and not as clean probably due to the higher than desired finishing gravity of mine and the lower bitterness.
Update 10/24/2017
In an unexpected twist this beer is surprisingly clear now and about 3-4 SRM lighter in color. It’s professionally clear and barely amber in color. It’s like whatever was still in solution that fell out was all amber in color. To the point that I’m wondering if I’ll get dinged at Dixie Cup, it’ll be because they question whether it’s a festbier. The impression of sweetness has lessened and the melanoidin flavor has increased in that munich sort of fashion. I’m kind of stunned on how this beer has changed. I think I took a picture weeks ago and can get one now to post. Hopefully I remember to do so. As it sits I would still lessen the gravity on this beer(I went to high) but man, it is a great Oktoberfest. Better than many I’ve had from pro brewers.

Recipe Details

Batch Size Boil Time IBU SRM Est. OG Est. FG ABV
11 gal 60 min 20.1 IBUs 7.9 SRM 1.057 1.014 5.6 %

Style Details

Name Cat. OG Range FG Range IBU SRM Carb ABV
Marzen 6 A 1.054 - 1.06 1.01 - 1.014 18 - 24 8 - 17 2.5 - 3 5.8 - 6.3 %

Fermentables

Name Amount %
Pilsner (Weyermann) 13 lbs 55.08
Munich (BestMälz) 10 lbs 42.37
Caramunich I (Weyermann) 9.6 oz 2.54

Hops

Name Amount Time Use Form Alpha %
Hallertauer Mittelfrueh 2 oz 90 min Boil Pellet 2.6
Saaz 1.5 oz 90 min Boil Pellet 3
Hallertauer Mittelfrueh 1 oz 10 min Boil Pellet 4

Miscs

Name Amount Time Use Type
Calcium Chloride 9.00 g 60 min Mash Water Agent
Lactic Acid 8.00 ml 60 min Mash Water Agent
Gypsum (Calcium Sulfate) 6.00 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
Protein Rest 122°F 35 min
Saccharification 154°F 45 min
Mash Out 168°F 10 min

Marzen 2016 Oktoberfest!

June 26th, 2016

I already can’t wait for the Fall! One week in to Summer and I’ve had enough! So in the spirit of getting ready for Fall I brewed up a nice Marzen today. It’ll be on the pale side for this style but in the past I didn’t enjoy those which had Crystal or Melanoidin malts. I thought about doing a decoction but didn’t think I’d have the time today.

June 26 Update:
Brew day went perfectly fine. The gravity ended up high at about 1.061. I guess we’ll see how it ends up! Going to pitch WLP830 from my previous small batch lager. I have more than enough for 10 gallons.
July 4, 2016 Update
Visible fermentation has stopped almost completely. The final gravity is currently around 1.017 which is a little high for style. It’s bitter enough though which holds up to it. After about a week I brought the temperature up closer to 65F for a few days. Going to leave it in the 50’s for a few more days before bringing it down to 40F. Hopefully it’ll dry out a tad more but either way it’ll be very drinkable. Has a nice herbal lemon hop thing going on to support the soft bready aromas you expect out of this beer.

July 25, 2016
This beer is really wonderful. A nice high carbonation gives the impression of dryness appropriate to this style. Bready, toasty with a nice rich maltiness that doesn’t hit sweet. It’s color is a little too golden for the oktoberfest style but who cares. Call it a festbier if you like! Will easily drink all 10 gallons. Will rebrew and add a decoction to gauge effects.

Recipe Details

Batch Size Boil Time IBU SRM Est. OG Est. FG ABV
11 gal 90 min 23.8 IBUs 6.6 SRM 1.057 1.012 5.8 %

Style Details

Name Cat. OG Range FG Range IBU SRM Carb ABV
Marzen 6 A 1.054 - 1.06 1.01 - 1.014 18 - 24 8 - 17 2.5 - 3 5.8 - 6.3 %

Fermentables

Name Amount %
Pilsner (Weyermann) 15 lbs 55.56
Munich (BestMälz) 7 lbs 25.93
Vienna (BestMälz) 5 lbs 18.52

Hops

Name Amount Time Use Form Alpha %
Magnum 1 oz 70 min Boil Pellet 13
Hallertauer Hersbrucker 1 oz 15 min Boil Pellet 2

Yeast

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

Mash

Step Temperature Time
Saccharification 152°F 60 min
Mash Out 168°F 10 min

Jamil’s Marzen Brewed August 2012

August 4th, 2012

Time to get some Oktoberfest beers in the fermenter.  Water is 100% Baton Rouge water.  Modification of 1 1/2 teaspoon of chalk, 1/2 teaspoon of gypsum and 1/3 teaspoon of calcium chloride.

How it Actually Went:

Hit the mash temperature spot on.   Based on feedback from Andrew at Parish Brewing I checked my ph to be sure my mashes are ending up at the right ph and they are.(which means the other part of his comment about too much roasted grains in the porter was the problem)   Ran off 7 gallons and boiled down to 1.052 which was a little low.   I am going to go ahead and adjust my efficiency to 67% for the sake of coming in right.   I will likely tighten the screw on the malt mill to see what tat does.    This beer is on the right in the fermenting tank.   It and the Vienna look a lot alike in the fermenter.  Pitched the starter and it appears to be fermenting albeit a bit slower than the Vienna.

Update 9/22/2012

Interesting enough around 9/10/2012 the Vienna had fermented out completely while the Oktoberfest stalled at 1.035.  I had cold crashed thinking both were done but actually the White Labs Oktoberfest yeast had started very slow and probably needed to be left at 50 degrees for much longer.   I believe in the future I will make sure to let this yeast primary for a long time and make larger than normal starters.    Interesting enough this led to another experiment.   I brought the fermenter temperature up to right at 65 degrees and pitched a package of Safale 05.   It fermented the beer down to 1.016 and it tastes pretty darn good!   So beer not wasted.   All’s well that ends well with more knowledge and a decent yet strange Oktoberfest.

Two days after the 1.016 it finished out further to 1.014 so right on target and very nice.   I’m calling it a Foktoberfest for an F’d up Oktoberfest.

 

Name: Jamils Marzen
Description: strike water will be 16 quarts at 163F. targeting 152F.    water profile will be palmers marzen profile
Post Boil Volume: 6.00
Pre Boil Volume: 7.00
Mash Time: 60.00
Boil Time: 90.00
Desired Original Gravity: 1.055
Desired Final Gravity: 1.015
Calculated Likely ABV% Based on Specified Gravities: 5.240
Users Targeted ABV%: 5.400
Desired CO2 Volumes: 2.5
Anticipated Brewhouse Efficiency: 68
Likely Original Gravity at 6.00 Based on Grains and Efficiency: @ 68% = 322 GU = 1.054

Grain: Caramunich Malt qty:1
Grain: Munich Malt qty:4
Grain: Pilsner (2 Row) Ger qty:5
Grain: Vienna Malt qty:3

Hop : Hallertauer qty:1.5 at:60 mins. AA=4.80
Hop : Hallertauer qty:0.5 at:10 mins. AA=4.80

Yeast: Octoberfest/Marzen Lager qty:1 Max temp: 58.0 Min temp: 52.0

Style Name: Oktoberfest/Märzen (European Amber Lager)
Jamils Marzen Pocket Brewer XML Code»

Jamils Marzen BeerXML Code»

Sent from my Windows Phone


<?xml version=”1.0″ encoding=”utf-16″?>
<RecipeClass>
<BREWER>Pocket Brewer</BREWER>
<Type>All Grain</Type>
<VERSION>1</VERSION>
<OriginalGravity>1.055</OriginalGravity>
<OriginalGravityImportExport>1.055</OriginalGravityImportExport>
<FinalGravityImportExport>1.015</FinalGravityImportExport>
<FinalGravity>1.015</FinalGravity>
<BatchSize>6</BatchSize>
<BatchSizeImportExport>6</BatchSizeImportExport>
<BoilVolumeSize>7</BoilVolumeSize>
<BoilVolumeSizeImportExport>7</BoilVolumeSizeImportExport>
<CO2Volumes>2.5</CO2Volumes>
<BoilTime>90</BoilTime>
<MashTime>60</MashTime>
<TargetABV>5.4</TargetABV>
<BrewHouseEfficiency>68</BrewHouseEfficiency>
<Name>Jamils Marzen</Name>
<Style />
<Description>strike water will be 16 quarts at 163F. targeting 152F.    water profile will be palmers marzen profile</Description>
<StyleIdExact>3B</StyleIdExact>
<StyleIdGeneral>3</StyleIdGeneral>
<Yeasts>
<YeastAdditionClass>
<Quantity>1</Quantity>
<Name>Octoberfest/Marzen Lager</Name>
<ProductID>WLP820</ProductID>
</YeastAdditionClass>
</Yeasts>
<Hops>
<HopAdditionClass>
<USE>Boil</USE>
<VERSION>1</VERSION>
<NOTES>Used for: German Ales, German/US/Canadian Lagers, Wheat Beers</NOTES>
<QuantityIO>1.5</QuantityIO>
<Quantity>1.5</Quantity>
<QuantityText>1.5</QuantityText>
<Alpha>4.80</Alpha>
<AlphaText>4.80</AlphaText>
<TinsethIBUS>20</TinsethIBUS>
<IsWholeHop>false</IsWholeHop>
<TimeInMinutes>60</TimeInMinutes>
<TimeInMinutesText>60</TimeInMinutesText>
<Name>Hallertauer</Name>
<Visible>Visible</Visible>
</HopAdditionClass>
<HopAdditionClass>
<USE>Boil</USE>
<VERSION>1</VERSION>
<NOTES>Used for: German Ales, German/US/Canadian Lagers, Wheat Beers</NOTES>
<QuantityIO>0.5</QuantityIO>
<Quantity>0.5</Quantity>
<QuantityText>0.5</QuantityText>
<Alpha>4.80</Alpha>
<AlphaText>4.80</AlphaText>
<TinsethIBUS>2</TinsethIBUS>
<IsWholeHop>false</IsWholeHop>
<TimeInMinutes>10</TimeInMinutes>
<TimeInMinutesText>10</TimeInMinutesText>
<Name>Hallertauer</Name>
<Visible>Visible</Visible>
</HopAdditionClass>
</Hops>
<Grains>
<GrainAdditionClass>
<QuantityIO>1</QuantityIO>
<VERSION>1</VERSION>
<YIELD>71.70</YIELD>
<COLOR>56.0</COLOR>
<ORIGIN>Belgium</ORIGIN>
<SUPPLIER />
<NOTES>Caramel, copper colored malt.  Used in Belgian ales and German bocks.</NOTES>
<Quantity>1</Quantity>
<PotentialSpecificGravity>1.033</PotentialSpecificGravity>
<Type>Grain</Type>
<Name>Caramunich Malt</Name>
</GrainAdditionClass>
<GrainAdditionClass>
<QuantityIO>4</QuantityIO>
<VERSION>1</VERSION>
<YIELD>80.00</YIELD>
<COLOR>9.0</COLOR>
<ORIGIN>Germany</ORIGIN>
<SUPPLIER />
<NOTES />
<Quantity>4</Quantity>
<PotentialSpecificGravity>1.037</PotentialSpecificGravity>
<Type>Grain</Type>
<Name>Munich Malt</Name>
</GrainAdditionClass>
<GrainAdditionClass>
<QuantityIO>5</QuantityIO>
<VERSION>1</VERSION>
<YIELD>81.00</YIELD>
<COLOR>2.0</COLOR>
<ORIGIN>Germany</ORIGIN>
<SUPPLIER />
<NOTES>German base for Pilsners and Bohemian Lagers</NOTES>
<Quantity>5</Quantity>
<PotentialSpecificGravity>1.037</PotentialSpecificGravity>
<Type>Grain</Type>
<Name>Pilsner (2 Row) Ger</Name>
</GrainAdditionClass>
<GrainAdditionClass>
<QuantityIO>3</QuantityIO>
<VERSION>1</VERSION>
<YIELD>78.00</YIELD>
<COLOR>3.5</COLOR>
<ORIGIN>Germany</ORIGIN>
<SUPPLIER />
<NOTES />
<Quantity>3</Quantity>
<PotentialSpecificGravity>1.036</PotentialSpecificGravity>
<Type>Grain</Type>
<Name>Vienna Malt</Name>
</GrainAdditionClass>
</Grains>
<Adjuncts />
<MISCS />
<WATERS />
<MASH>
<MASH_STEPS />
<VERSION>0</VERSION>
<GRAIN_TEMP>0</GRAIN_TEMP>
<TUN_TEMP>0</TUN_TEMP>
<SPARGE_TEMP>0</SPARGE_TEMP>
<PH>0</PH>
<TUN_WEIGHT>0</TUN_WEIGHT>
<TUN_SPECIFIC_HEAT>0</TUN_SPECIFIC_HEAT>
</MASH>
<Id>00f2d813-971e-4344-ba23-6ee1b2679947</Id>
<BrewHouse>
<Efficiency>68</Efficiency>
</BrewHouse>
</RecipeClass>

<?xml version=”1.0″ encoding=”utf-16″?>
<RECIPE>
<NAME>Jamils Marzen</NAME>
<VERSION>1</VERSION>
<TYPE>All Grain</TYPE>
<NOTES>strike water will be 16 quarts at 163F. targeting 152F.    water profile will be palmers marzen profile</NOTES>
<BREWER>Pocket Brewer</BREWER>
<BATCH_SIZE>22.7115</BATCH_SIZE>
<BOIL_TIME>90</BOIL_TIME>
<BOIL_SIZE>26.4968</BOIL_SIZE>
<EFFICIENCY>68</EFFICIENCY>
<FG>1.015</FG>
<OG>1.055</OG>
<CARBONATION>2.5</CARBONATION>
<HOPS>
<HOP>
<NAME>Hallertauer</NAME>
<VERSION>1</VERSION>
<ALPHA>4.80</ALPHA>
<AMOUNT>0.0425</AMOUNT>
<USE>Boil</USE>
<TIME>60</TIME>
<NOTES>Used for: German Ales, German/US/Canadian Lagers, Wheat Beers</NOTES>
</HOP>
<HOP>
<NAME>Hallertauer</NAME>
<VERSION>1</VERSION>
<ALPHA>4.80</ALPHA>
<AMOUNT>0.0142</AMOUNT>
<USE>Boil</USE>
<TIME>10</TIME>
<NOTES>Used for: German Ales, German/US/Canadian Lagers, Wheat Beers</NOTES>
</HOP>
</HOPS>
<FERMENTABLES>
<FERMENTABLE>
<NAME>Caramunich Malt</NAME>
<VERSION>1</VERSION>
<AMOUNT>0.4536</AMOUNT>
<TYPE>Grain</TYPE>
<YIELD>71.70</YIELD>
<COLOR>56.0</COLOR>
<ORIGIN>Belgium</ORIGIN>
<SUPPLIER />
<NOTES>Caramel, copper colored malt.  Used in Belgian ales and German bocks.</NOTES>
<COARSE_FINE_DIFF>1.50</COARSE_FINE_DIFF>
<MOISTURE>4.00</MOISTURE>
<DISASTATIC_POWER>0.0</DISASTATIC_POWER>
<PROTEIN>0.00</PROTEIN>
<MAX_IN_BATCH>10.00</MAX_IN_BATCH>
<POTENTIAL>1.033</POTENTIAL>
</FERMENTABLE>
<FERMENTABLE>
<NAME>Munich Malt</NAME>
<VERSION>1</VERSION>
<AMOUNT>1.8144</AMOUNT>
<TYPE>Grain</TYPE>
<YIELD>80.00</YIELD>
<COLOR>9.0</COLOR>
<ORIGIN>Germany</ORIGIN>
<SUPPLIER />
<NOTES />
<COARSE_FINE_DIFF>1.30</COARSE_FINE_DIFF>
<MOISTURE>5.00</MOISTURE>
<DISASTATIC_POWER>72.0</DISASTATIC_POWER>
<PROTEIN>11.50</PROTEIN>
<MAX_IN_BATCH>80.00</MAX_IN_BATCH>
<POTENTIAL>1.037</POTENTIAL>
</FERMENTABLE>
<FERMENTABLE>
<NAME>Pilsner (2 Row) Ger</NAME>
<VERSION>1</VERSION>
<AMOUNT>2.268</AMOUNT>
<TYPE>Grain</TYPE>
<YIELD>81.00</YIELD>
<COLOR>2.0</COLOR>
<ORIGIN>Germany</ORIGIN>
<SUPPLIER />
<NOTES>German base for Pilsners and Bohemian Lagers</NOTES>
<COARSE_FINE_DIFF>1.50</COARSE_FINE_DIFF>
<MOISTURE>4.00</MOISTURE>
<DISASTATIC_POWER>110.0</DISASTATIC_POWER>
<PROTEIN>11.00</PROTEIN>
<MAX_IN_BATCH>100.00</MAX_IN_BATCH>
<POTENTIAL>1.037</POTENTIAL>
</FERMENTABLE>
<FERMENTABLE>
<NAME>Vienna Malt</NAME>
<VERSION>1</VERSION>
<AMOUNT>1.3608</AMOUNT>
<TYPE>Grain</TYPE>
<YIELD>78.00</YIELD>
<COLOR>3.5</COLOR>
<ORIGIN>Germany</ORIGIN>
<SUPPLIER />
<NOTES />
<COARSE_FINE_DIFF>1.50</COARSE_FINE_DIFF>
<MOISTURE>4.00</MOISTURE>
<DISASTATIC_POWER>50.0</DISASTATIC_POWER>
<PROTEIN>11.00</PROTEIN>
<MAX_IN_BATCH>90.00</MAX_IN_BATCH>
<POTENTIAL>1.036</POTENTIAL>
</FERMENTABLE>
</FERMENTABLES>
<MISCS />
<WATERS />
<YEASTS>
<YEAST>
<NAME>Octoberfest/Marzen Lager</NAME>
<TYPE>Lager</TYPE>
<VERSION>0</VERSION>
<FORM>Liquid</FORM>
<AMOUNT>1</AMOUNT>
<LABORATORY>White Labs</LABORATORY>
<PRODUCT_ID>WLP820</PRODUCT_ID>
<MIN_TEMPERATURE>52.0</MIN_TEMPERATURE>
<MAX_TEMPERATURE>58.0</MAX_TEMPERATURE>
<ATTENUATION>69.00</ATTENUATION>
<NOTES>Produces a malty, bock style beer.  Does not finish as dry or as fast as White’s German Lager yeast.  Longer lagering or starter recommended.</NOTES>
<BEST_FOR>Marzen, Oktoberfest, European Lagers, Bocks, Munich Helles</BEST_FOR>
<FLOCCULATION>Medium</FLOCCULATION>
</YEAST>
</YEASTS>
<MASH>
<MASH_STEPS />
<VERSION>0</VERSION>
<GRAIN_TEMP>0</GRAIN_TEMP>
<TUN_TEMP>0</TUN_TEMP>
<SPARGE_TEMP>0</SPARGE_TEMP>
<PH>0</PH>
<TUN_WEIGHT>0</TUN_WEIGHT>
<TUN_SPECIFIC_HEAT>0</TUN_SPECIFIC_HEAT>
</MASH>
<STYLE>
<NAME>Oktoberfest/Märzen</NAME>
<CATEGORY>European Amber Lager</CATEGORY>
<CATEGORY_NUMBER>3</CATEGORY_NUMBER>
<STYLE_LETTER>B</STYLE_LETTER>
<STYLE_GUIDE>BJCP</STYLE_GUIDE>
<VERSION>1</VERSION>
<TYPE>Lager</TYPE>
<OG_MIN>1.050</OG_MIN>
<OG_MAX>1.057</OG_MAX>
<FG_MIN>1.012</FG_MIN>
<FG_MAX>1.016</FG_MAX>
<IBU_MIN>20</IBU_MIN>
<IBU_MAX>28</IBU_MAX>
<COLOR_MIN>7.0</COLOR_MIN>
<COLOR_MAX>14.0</COLOR_MAX>
<ABV_MIN>4.8</ABV_MIN>
<ABV_MAX>5.7</ABV_MAX>
<NOTES>Domestic German versions tend to be golden, like a strong Pils-dominated Helles.  Export German versions are typically orange-amber in color, and have a distinctive toasty malt character.  German beer tax law limits the OG of the style at 14°P since it is a vollbier, although American versions can be stronger.  “Fest” type beers are special occasion beers that are usually stronger than their everyday counterparts.</NOTES>
</STYLE>
</RECIPE>

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