Brew Dudes

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Munich Helles – Jar of Destiny

Yes, homebrew video series that keeps going and going. We present the latest update from the Jar of Destiny, a magical journey of beer style exploration. This post is about Munich Helles, another lager style that John chose as a part of the seventh pick. See how this beer turned out as we taste and chat about it.

Munich Helles Recipe

This is a recipe for the BJCP Style 4A – Munich Helles from the Pale Malty European Lager category.

Recipe for 5 US Gallons in keg

WATER

9 gallons Spring water – 5 grams of gypsum

GRAINS

10 pounds of Dingemans Pilsner Malt (4.5 kg – 91% of the bill)
1 pound of Weyermann Light Munich Malt AKA Type 1 (0.45 kg – 9% of the bill)

HOPS

1.5 ounces (43 g) of Mittelfruh at 4% AA boiled for 75 minutes

YEAST

2 packets of Wyeast 2308 Munich Lager Yeast – 3 liter starter

PROCEDURES

Mashed at 150 °F (66 °C) for 90 minutes
Boiled for 75 minutes

Fermented for 2 weeks – started at 50°F (10° C)
— Then, brought to room temperature for 4 days at 72°F (22° C)

Cold Conditioned for 2 weeks at 34°F (1° C)
Closed transferred to another keg
Added 5 grams of gelatin dissolved in (295 ml of water to clear

RESULTS

Original Gravity: 1.052
Final Gravity: 1.012
ABV: 5.25%

Our Tasting Notes

We both think the color and the clarity were good. It has a strong gold color and it fits the style guideline. The aroma has present malty notes and they follow through to the flavor. The yeast really pushed the Munich malt forward and it was the most influential flavor. The hops show up in the background of the aftertaste. This beer is bolder than expected. We are expecting a lighter, more quaffable lager. This example felt too malty. To adjust, I would reduce the Munich malt in half and use a lager yeast that finishes drier than the Wyeast.

BREW ON!

Brew a Small Beer To Brew a Big Beer

We all know that yeast management is key to excellent beer. It is particularly true when brewing high gravity beers like an Imperial Stout. With Mike’s pick from the Jar of Destiny Round 7, it was imperative to make a plan for a healthy pitch of yeast. See the output of step one of his plan, which was to brew a small beer. His hopes are that the yeast cake from this beer will provide a excellent fermentation of his big beer.

Nothing Like a 6.5 Gallon Starter

The Scottish Golden Ale Recipe

Mike named this beer for its color and ingredients. The malt bill will share many of the same grains as his Imperial Stout. Even though this beer is simply as yeast starter for the next one, he brewed something tasty for us to enjoy now.

Batch Size: 6.5 US gallons 24 Liters post boil

Grain Bill:

  • 77% Golden Promise
  • 7% Type 1 Munich
  • 13% Carastan Malt
  • 10% English Medium Crystal Malt

Hops:

  • 1 ounce (28 g) of Challenger hops boiled for 60 minutes (25 IBUs)

Yeast:

  • 1 packet of Cellar Science CALI dry yeast
  • 1 packet of Cellar Science ENGLISH dry yeast

Water:

Spring water with minerals added to match this profile

  • Calcium: 75 PPM
  • Magnesium: 5 PPM
  • Sodium: 41 PPM
  • Sulfate: 109 PPM
  • Chloride: 131 PPM

Instructions:

  • Mash at 152°F for 45 minutes.
  • Mash out at 168°F for 15 minutes.
  • Ferment two weeks at room temperature

Results:

  • Starting Gravity: 1.051
  • Finishing Gravity: 1.013
  • ABV: 5%

Let’s Taste This Small Beer

The beer is malt forward with some English hop bitterness to balance it out. It will be a great Autumn drinker, pairing well with cooler nights.

Again, the point is to brew a small beer to produce a large mass of yeast. This large mass will be up to the task to fermenting a high gravity Imperial Stout. In a few weeks, we should have the final results of this plan.

BREW ON!

Summer Saison – Recipe and Review

The last days of Summer are upon us. Mike keeps the hot days going by brewing a Saison. This farmhouse style is known for performing well in warmer than usual fermentation temperatures. For this beer, Mike brings a few experiments to the recipe to keep it interesting. See what special ingredients he used and our Summer Saison tasting notes in this video:

Summer Saison Recipe

Let’s check out what went into this beer!

This recipe is for a 3.5 US Gallons (13.2 L) post boil volume recipe.

Grain Bill/Fermentables

72% Pilsner malt
15% Spelt
6% Flaked oats
6% Table sugar

Hops

Targeting 30 IBUs
1 ounce (28 g) of Sterling hops added at 60 minutes to go in the boil
1.5 ounces (42 g) Sterling hops added at 10 minutes to go in the boil

Yeast

1 packet of CellarScience SAISON Dry Yeast

Water

Distilled water with additions for this profile:
Calcium: 75 ppm
Magnesium: 5 ppm
Sodium: 41 ppm
Sulfate: 109 ppm
Chloride: 131 ppm

Instructions

Mash at 149°F for 50 minutes, then ramp up to 168°F for 15 minutes
Boil for 60 minutes
Cool the wort and pitch the yeast
Ferment at 70-74°F for 2-3 weeks
Bottle or keg and carbonate to 2.5 volumes of CO2

Details

Original Gravity: 1.066
Final Gravity: 1.004
ABV: 8%

Our Review

This beer delivers on the key notes for a saison. It has a citrusy, lemon flavor along with a spicy, herby aroma. The body is light and the finish is dry. We couldn’t tell if the spelt grain brought any different flavor notes, but the CellarScience yeast is a winner. It brought out many of the yeast-derived flavors we were looking for and we were happy with its performance.

We recommend you try out this dry yeast if you’re looking to brew a summer saison soon or anytime.

BREW ON!

Adeena Hops SMaSH Review and Tasting

We brewed a SMaSH beer with Adeena hops. They are supplied by Yakima Valley Hops and are another variety from New Zealand. This hop supposedly has more Noble hop characters so we put it to the test. Check out our review and tasting in this video.

The SMaSH Beer Process

Our Adeena SMaSH beer was a one-gallon batch, a format we often use for these experiments. We combined two pounds of 2-row pale malt, two gallons of water, and, of course, the star of the show, an ounce (28 g) of Adeena hops.

For our Adeena MaSH beer, we followed a slightly different process. We added seven grams of pellets at the beginning of a 60-minute boil to extract some bitterness. This choice was influenced by the hop’s alpha acid content. It was around 6%.

Later in the boil, around the 15-minute mark, we tossed in an additional three grams for a little extra flavor kick. But the real twist came during the hop stand. After cooling the wort to 180 degrees Fahrenheit (82 degrees Celsius), we let it steep with Adeena Hops for 10 minutes, allowing those delightful flavors to infuse.

On the third day of fermentation, we added another eight grams of Adeena Hops for dry hopping. After a total fermentation time of seven days, our beer has been patiently carbonating in the keg for two days.

Adeena Hops SMaSH Beer Thoughts

Mike described the aroma as having muted grapefruit notes, like overripe or dried-out grapefruit with a hint of pith. He also detected some citrus zest and a touch of dry lime peel.

On the palate, it was all about citrus, predominantly grapefruit. The bitterness was there, but it wasn’t a harsh or aggressive bitterness; it was more like a resinous, almost pine-like bitterness.

In our discussion, we talked about the potential applications for Adeena hops. While they may not be the classic Noble hop variety, they certainly have their place in different beer styles. We thought they could work well in a West Coast IPA, particularly when combined with other hops like some of the “C” hops.

For lager styles, we considered Adeena Hops as an option but not as a direct substitute. They have more of an American flavor profile, leaning towards citrus and away from traditional Noble characteristics.

Thanks to Yakima Valley Hops. BREW ON!

Brew Dudes Q&A Summer 2023 Session

These Brew Dudes dive into a range of brewing-related questions and topics posed by their viewers. As they share their expertise and perspectives, we gain valuable insights into various aspects of homebrewing and the beer-making process. Let’s take a closer look at the key questions and their answers from the video.

You Have Questions – We Have Answers

We broke up all of the topics into sections below and summarized our answers.

How do you carbonate beer in the uKeg?

To carbonate beer in a UKeg, you will need to use CO2 cartridges inserted into the UKeg’s shaft. The CO2 releases from the cartridge, and a dial controls the gas flow. This closed system ensures that the CO2 dissolves into the beer. Carbonation typically takes around two days, temperature-dependent.

What is a hop stand?

A hop stand is a post-boil hop addition that extracts aroma and flavor compounds from hops. It can be defined as letting hops sit under certain conditions, such as flameout, a specific temperature for a set time, or whirlpooling. Hop stands can be used to create a variety of flavors in beer, from fruity to earthy to resinous.

What finishes cleaner – US-05 or NovaLager?

The NovaLager strain is known for its extreme cleanliness, while the Chico strain (US-05) is a clean ale yeast that is still capable of imparting some esters. When used in a lager fermentation, the NovaLager strain will leave no yeast flavors behind, allowing the beer to shine through.

Do you need to do a diacetyl rest in a lager fermentation?

A diacetyl rest is a step in the lager fermentation process where the temperature is raised to a specific point to allow the yeast to convert diacetyl, a compound with buttery or butterscotch flavors, into other compounds. This step is important for ensuring that the beer has a clean flavor.

Would you cook with low-quality beer rather than dumping it?

We debate about whether or not it is possible to cook with low-quality beer. Some people believe that the off-flavors in the beer will be too pronounced, while others believe that the beer can be used to add depth and complexity to a dish. If you decide to cook with low-quality beer, it is important to use it in moderation and to balance it with other flavors.

Do you really like low-alcohol beer?

Low-alcohol beer is becoming increasingly popular, as more and more people are looking for ways to enjoy the taste of beer without the alcohol. There are a number of reasons why low-alcohol beer is appealing, including the fact that it is lower in calories and carbohydrates than regular beer, and that it can be enjoyed by people who are driving or who have to work the next day.

What about the craft beer trends towards high-alcohol beers?

In recent years, there has been a trend towards craft brewers producing higher-alcohol beers. This trend is likely due to a number of factors, including the desire to stand out from the competition, the perceived value of higher-alcohol beers, and the technical challenges involved in brewing them. IPAs are a popular style of high-alcohol beer, as the alcohol helps to enhance the hop flavor.

How do you remove alcohol from homebrewed beer?

It is possible to remove alcohol from beer through boiling, but this process can concentrate the flavors and accelerate staling. Uncontrolled heating can also negatively impact beer quality. As a result, we don’t recommend to remove alcohol from beer but it would be fun to try.

Do pressure fermented beers have smaller bubbles?

We don’t have much experience with pressure fermented beers but we think that bottle conditioned beers tend to have smaller bubbles because the particles in the beer. Mike explained that bottle conditioned beers may seem to have a smoother carbonation from forced carbonated beers because of the particulate matter in the bottle.

What happened to the intro music?

Yes, let’s talk about the vanishing intro music. We removed the catchy intro music due to copyright concerns. We made a decision to switch to a stock music piece, although we are thinking about a creative and unique intro jingle in the future.

BREW ON!

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