The "nail polish remover" taste may have been because the beer was old and not stored properly. hefeweizen does not travel or age well. I don't know what part of the country you are in but if you want a fanDAMNtastic version of a hefewezien try Troeg's Dreamweaver - it's spot on perfect.
I'd make a yeast starter if I were you. At least just get the yeast active and pitch the starter. I usually do a 1L well aerated active starter per 5 gallons.
Step mash is optional, but you may find a ferrulic acid rest at ~111 increases your clove character.
"Buttery mouthfeel" sounds like a defect to me. I'd stick with what you have. My preference is 60% wheat malt to 40% pils, maybe a lb or vienna or munich if I'm feeling edgy.
Good luck and have fun!
Sounds good Major. I think we might try Toms single decoction just for S's and G's It is possible the nail polish remover was due to improper handing, we are nearly 10k miles away from bavaria (I'm in northern california). I will look for Troeg's hefe, we are still a ways away but there is a good bottle shop in town and perhaps they have it, if not perhaps they will get it if requested.
In terms of the buttery mouthfeel, she described it as like a chardonnay. I did not pick up any myself but she is a super taster so who knows.
I'm going to back down and to a 5.5 gallon batch at first and I will either pitch two tubes/smack packs or make a 1 liter starter. Don't want banana bread.
So if we mash in to hit 111 how long to hold it there? do we then decoct right up to 150? or do we want to decoct up to 130 for protein rest and then infuse to 150?
Tom what is your single decoction schedule?