Homebrewers Association | AHA Forum

General Category => Commercial Beer Reviews => Topic started by: klickitat jim on January 15, 2014, 11:11:36 AM

Title: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: klickitat jim on January 15, 2014, 11:11:36 AM
Why is there no commercial example given in the style guide?
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: jeffy on January 15, 2014, 01:02:44 PM
Why is there no commercial example given in the style guide?

It's extinct except for homebrewers.  There are some newer examples out there, made since the guidelines were last updated.  Coors has one called Batch 45 or something, but I didn't find the hop character very noticeable.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: majorvices on January 15, 2014, 01:27:36 PM
I've thought about doing one and still might, but it probably won't be for a couple more years.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: punatic on January 15, 2014, 01:41:23 PM
I've thought about doing one and still might, but it probably won't be for a couple more years.

You're so trendy!   ;D
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: Jimmy K on January 15, 2014, 01:46:49 PM
Because it's classic!   :P

This was one of the beers on my tasting exam. It was a torpedo! Never saw it coming! Baaahhh!! You only see it brewed commercially as brewpub exclusives and such.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: majorvices on January 15, 2014, 02:00:03 PM
I've thought about doing one and still might, but it probably won't be for a couple more years.

You're so trendy!   ;D
 

I have a great name that begs for the beer. ;)
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: MDixon on January 15, 2014, 02:23:19 PM
It's not exactly extinct. Some breweries and brewpubs have made it over the years, but I'm not sure anyone with wide distribution has one.

The last one I remember was Capital 1900 out of Capital in Madison. IMO it needed more corn and hops and was a little too plain for the style.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: reverseapachemaster on January 15, 2014, 03:32:29 PM
Yeah, the Batch 19 is a pre-prohibition style CAP by Coors. I believe they also produce one that is only distributed in Colorado under the Colorado Native brand.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: hopfenundmalz on January 15, 2014, 03:56:04 PM
For some background you can read this.
http://morebeer.com/brewingtechniques/library/backissues/issue3.5/renner.html

Straub is making one, 1872 Pilsner, no idea how good. One of the local places, Wolverine, makes a CAP in the summer.

The guidelines reflect what is being entered in large amounts in homebrew competitions. CAP was so it got a category in the 2008 guidelines, so did Double IPAs. There are beers that are not in the guidelines, see cat. 23. If I brewed a Tmave Pivo it would have to go in cat. 23, as those are styles in the Czech Republic, but are mostly unknown here and not entered in quantity in competitions.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: chumley on January 15, 2014, 04:40:28 PM
Full Sail's Session is a pretty good example, IMHO.

http://www.fullsailbrewing.com/session-lager.cfm (http://www.fullsailbrewing.com/session-lager.cfm)
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: denny on January 15, 2014, 04:57:33 PM
Full Sail's Session is a pretty good example, IMHO.

http://www.fullsailbrewing.com/session-lager.cfm (http://www.fullsailbrewing.com/session-lager.cfm)

It is a good beer, but I don't think it's hoppy enough for a true CAP.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: jeffy on January 15, 2014, 05:41:55 PM
I shared my homebrewed CAP with Jeff Renner last weekend since he's in FL for a couple weeks.  This version of his recipe is slightly too bitter and to me has just a bit too much Cluster hop flavor.  I am lagering the other half of the batch and decided to dry hop it with Mittelfruh.  He suggested I use first wort hopping the next time.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: AmandaK on January 15, 2014, 05:42:42 PM
Full Sail's Session is a pretty good example, IMHO.

http://www.fullsailbrewing.com/session-lager.cfm (http://www.fullsailbrewing.com/session-lager.cfm)

It is a good beer, but I don't think it's hoppy enough for a true CAP.

This is one of the many reasons I'm looking forward to the guideline update. "Medium to high hop aroma/flavor/bitterness" leaves a lot to be interpreted if you don't have a classic example. I brew a CAP with 6 oz of Saaz - usual comments are 'not hoppy enough', whatever that means. I might just enter a Prima Pils type German Pils as a CAP and see if that's hoppy enough! HA!
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: Three on January 15, 2014, 05:49:48 PM
I have a CAP in my to brew list.  Just looking at the simple ingredients makes me want to brew it and see what I get.  Back in the day we drank mostly lagers/pilsners.  This should be a good "starting point" to see if I want to tweak up a pilsner recipe to have as a house regular. 

Jim, do you use beersmith?   I have the Renner "Your Father's Mustache", and Jamil's "Classic American Pilsner" basic recipes ready.   You will need to tweak them as I just put them in as they were written.  Renner's is probably more true to style with 6 row, but Jamil's looks fine with a blend of 2 row. 

Anyway let me know and I'll send you the recipes.......
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: hopfenundmalz on January 15, 2014, 05:50:50 PM
Full Sail's Session is a pretty good example, IMHO.

http://www.fullsailbrewing.com/session-lager.cfm (http://www.fullsailbrewing.com/session-lager.cfm)

It is a good beer, but I don't think it's hoppy enough for a true CAP.

This is one of the many reasons I'm looking forward to the guideline update. "Medium to high hop aroma/flavor/bitterness" leaves a lot to be interpreted if you don't have a classic example. I brew a CAP with 6 oz of Saaz - usual comments are 'not hoppy enough', whatever that means. I might just enter a Prima Pils type German Pils as a CAP and see if that's hoppy enough! HA!

The one I had in the second round last year was said to be not bitter enough. It was designed for 38 IBUs, and was about 1.050. FWH was used, so I might bump up the cluster addition next time.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: denny on January 15, 2014, 05:54:51 PM
Full Sail's Session is a pretty good example, IMHO.

http://www.fullsailbrewing.com/session-lager.cfm (http://www.fullsailbrewing.com/session-lager.cfm)

It is a good beer, but I don't think it's hoppy enough for a true CAP.

This is one of the many reasons I'm looking forward to the guideline update. "Medium to high hop aroma/flavor/bitterness" leaves a lot to be interpreted if you don't have a classic example. I brew a CAP with 6 oz of Saaz - usual comments are 'not hoppy enough', whatever that means. I might just enter a Prima Pils type German Pils as a CAP and see if that's hoppy enough! HA!

Amanda, I'd be in the same quandary if I hadn't tasted Jeff Renner's and a couple other versions influenced by him.  Maybe try Cluster and see if you get better comments.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: chumley on January 15, 2014, 07:41:56 PM
I hear what you all are saying,  but I am skeptical about style guidelines applied to a historic style that no one has ever tasted.

I have a hard time believing that our grandparents and great grandparents went from being super hothead to swill drinkers during the 15 year course of Prohibition.

I recall reading an article once on historic IPAd, that instead of being hop bombs, they were probably of moderate bitterness,  as the hops were not so bitter. I would suspect that to be true of CAPs.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: denny on January 15, 2014, 08:00:10 PM
I hear what you all are saying,  but I am skeptical about style guidelines applied to a historic style that no one has ever tasted.

I have a hard time believing that our grandparents and great grandparents went from being super hothead to swill drinkers during the 15 year course of Prohibition.

I recall reading an article once on historic IPAd, that instead of being hop bombs, they were probably of moderate bitterness,  as the hops were not so bitter. I would suspect that to be true of CAPs.

May very well be, Chumley.  What I recall of Jeff R's version is an assertive but not "slap you in the face" bitterness.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: Jimmy K on January 15, 2014, 08:11:47 PM
I don't think they drank anything approaching the hop levels of todays beers. Nobody was making hops bombs because hops were expensive (they still are).  But the lessening of flavor started long before prohibition too. Refrigeration probably freed brewers to use less hops because they depended on preservative qualities a little less.  CAP probably had bitterness similar to a german pilsner because it was german immigrant brewers who came here and tried to brew the beers they knew with local ingredients.

IPA is nothing like it was either. It doesn't sit in casks in the bottom of a ship for six months before being drunk.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: hopfenundmalz on January 15, 2014, 08:17:00 PM
I hear what you all are saying,  but I am skeptical about style guidelines applied to a historic style that no one has ever tasted.

I have a hard time believing that our grandparents and great grandparents went from being super hothead to swill drinkers during the 15 year course of Prohibition.

I recall reading an article once on historic IPAd, that instead of being hop bombs, they were probably of moderate bitterness,  as the hops were not so bitter. I would suspect that to be true of CAPs.
Jeff's CAP instantly reminded me of the beers my dad would drink when I was a kid and sneaked sips a long time ago.

I think something along the line of an assertive German Pils is the right way to look at it, but with the American ingredients.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: HoosierBrew on January 15, 2014, 08:19:28 PM
I don't think they drank anything approaching the hop levels of todays beers. Nobody was making hops bombs because hops were expensive (they still are).  But the lessening of flavor started long before prohibition too. Refrigeration probably freed brewers to use less hops because they depended on preservative qualities a little less.  CAP probably had bitterness similar to a german pilsner because it was german immigrant brewers who came here and tried to brew the beers they knew with local ingredients.

IPA is nothing like it was either. It doesn't sit in casks in the bottom of a ship for six months before being drunk.

+1.  The German Pils comparison makes good sense.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: punatic on January 15, 2014, 08:32:45 PM
I would suspect that the bitterness was adjusted to compliment the corn flavors.
Reinheitsgebot sagt mais ist verboten.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: AmandaK on January 15, 2014, 09:09:32 PM
Amanda, I'd be in the same quandary if I hadn't tasted Jeff Renner's and a couple other versions influenced by him.  Maybe try Cluster and see if you get better comments.

Denny, that'd be like suggesting that you should use a bit of Fuggles in your wort.  ;D  Cluster is naaasty (read in Cleveland's voice) in my world.

Continuing on the good discussion though, anyone care to post Renner's CAP recipe?
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: Stevie on January 15, 2014, 09:27:04 PM
Continuing on the good discussion though, anyone care to post Renner's CAP recipe?

http://morebeer.com/brewingtechniques/library/backissues/issue3.5/renner.html

The formatting is funny, but there is a recipe in there. 80/20 6-row/flaked corn.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: natebriscoe on January 15, 2014, 09:47:17 PM
Amanda, I'd be in the same quandary if I hadn't tasted Jeff Renner's and a couple other versions influenced by him.  Maybe try Cluster and see if you get better comments.

Denny, that'd be like suggesting that you should use a bit of Fuggles in your wort.  ;D  Cluster is naaasty (read in Cleveland's voice) in my world.

Continuing on the good discussion though, anyone care to post Renner's CAP recipe?
Amanda I just happen to be bringing a fresh CAP to the meeting Friday, will be interesting to see if a Cap can be "good" without some cluster harshness.

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk

Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: Stevie on January 15, 2014, 10:30:57 PM
Denny, you being the godfather of batch sparging, how would you handle Jeff's mash schedule?

30 min @ 122
15 min @ 140
40 min @ 158
10 min @ mashout

Personally I hate step mashes in a cooler. Carrying boiling water isn't my cup of tea. Single infusion at 150-151?
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: klickitat jim on January 15, 2014, 10:42:18 PM
Full Sail's Session is a pretty good example, IMHO.

http://www.fullsailbrewing.com/session-lager.cfm (http://www.fullsailbrewing.com/session-lager.cfm)

It is a good beer, but I don't think it's hoppy enough for a true CAP.

It's the top example of 1c, but I'll bet they'd like to be #1 in 2c also.

Nevertheless,  my question stands... having no commercial example in this style is really testing my OCD.

Since the style calls for native American hops, which there is no such thing, their native to China if memory serves, maybe this is a mythical beer and that's why a commercial version doesn't exist.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: hopfenundmalz on January 15, 2014, 11:14:26 PM
Amanda, I'd be in the same quandary if I hadn't tasted Jeff Renner's and a couple other versions influenced by him.  Maybe try Cluster and see if you get better comments.

Denny, that'd be like suggesting that you should use a bit of Fuggles in your wort.  ;D  Cluster is naaasty (read in Cleveland's voice) in my world.

Continuing on the good discussion though, anyone care to post Renner's CAP recipe?

I will have to get his current one off of the old laptop. It uses Cluster, which I think is not bad at all if it is fresh. You may perceive it different from me. Some don't like Fuggles, I detest Nelson Sauvin. We all have different tastes.

Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: MDixon on January 16, 2014, 12:04:15 AM
I did well at comps with this one.
http://carboyclub.com/recipes/cap1.htm
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: gmwren on January 16, 2014, 02:27:46 AM
I like my Pre Prohibition CAP with 40/40/20 pils/six row/flaked corn. I usually FWH Sterling and a late addition with Saaz and or Sterling. Not too much hop aroma, just a tickle. This is my go to summer beer when the IPA is just too much.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: Joe Sr. on January 16, 2014, 04:03:57 PM
Nevertheless,  my question stands... having no commercial example in this style is really testing my OCD.

Since the style calls for native American hops, which there is no such thing, their native to China if memory serves, maybe this is a mythical beer and that's why a commercial version doesn't exist.

Jim,  I think you'll need to visit Mr. Peabody and use the wayback machine.  Could be a good time.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: denny on January 16, 2014, 04:14:37 PM
Amanda, I'd be in the same quandary if I hadn't tasted Jeff Renner's and a couple other versions influenced by him.  Maybe try Cluster and see if you get better comments.

Denny, that'd be like suggesting that you should use a bit of Fuggles in your wort.  ;D  Cluster is naaasty (read in Cleveland's voice) in my world.

Continuing on the good discussion though, anyone care to post Renner's CAP recipe?

Amanda, I generally would agree with you (sorry, chumley) but after tasting Jeff's beer with Clusters I can say it's one place they really work. 
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: denny on January 16, 2014, 04:27:44 PM
Denny, you being the godfather of batch sparging, how would you handle Jeff's mash schedule?

30 min @ 122
15 min @ 140
40 min @ 158
10 min @ mashout

Personally I hate step mashes in a cooler. Carrying boiling water isn't my cup of tea. Single infusion at 150-151?

IIRC, Jeff has modiifed that schedule significantly since the article was written.  I'd do 30 min. at 144 and 30 min. at 158.  hopfenmalz has mentioned that Jeff often uses polenta mashed in a pressure cooker.  Here's a more recent article by Jeff Renner, updating his procedure....http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/attachments/0000/1298/SOzym00-Pilsner.pdf
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: Stevie on January 16, 2014, 04:32:41 PM
IIRC, Jeff has modiifed that schedule significantly since the article was written.  I'd do 30 min. at 144 and 30 min. at 158.  hopfenmalz has mentioned that Jeff often uses polenta mashed in a pressure cooker.  Here's a more recent article by Jeff Renner, updating his procedure....http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/attachments/0000/1298/SOzym00-Pilsner.pdf

Thanks. One extra infusion isn't too bad and wouldn't take too much boiling water.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: jeffy on January 16, 2014, 05:27:37 PM
I've made it twice, pretty much following Jeff Renner's recipe per Jeff Rankert.  It's a Jeff thing.
I used 20% Quaker old fashioned grits and 80% pils malt in the first batch which won awards and 80% 6-row in the second batch.
Mash in the main mash with everything except the grits and 20% of the malt at 148.
Mash the grits and the other 20% of the malt together at 156F for 30 minutes and then bring it to a boil for 60 minutes.
Add this back to the main mash to bring it up to 156 or so.
Cluster for bittering and noble hops for flavor and aroma - about 35 to 40 BU's.
I used 2206 in mine, because that's the lager yeast I had at the time.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: garc_mall on January 16, 2014, 05:39:20 PM
Jim, Snoqualmie does a CAP for their Summer seasonal IIRC. That should have distribution through the whole state, and maybe in Oregon as well.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: pinnah on January 16, 2014, 05:53:29 PM
Since the style calls for native American hops, which there is no such thing, their native to China if memory serves, maybe this is a mythical beer and that's why a commercial version doesn't exist.

IMO, that is a misnomer in the guidelines.

There actually are "native American hops" for example Humulus lupulus neomexicanus
They are the wild common variety that occurred here prior to European settlement.

What I think they are talking about here are early American hops that may have become "naturalized".
Cluster is one of these varieties still around today...but it still has its origins from whatever the settlers brought over and it gradually became known as the classic American hop...for use in the Classic American Pilsner! :)
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: hopfenundmalz on January 16, 2014, 07:58:32 PM
I've made it twice, pretty much following Jeff Renner's recipe per Jeff Rankert.  It's a Jeff thing.
I used 20% Quaker old fashioned grits and 80% pils malt in the first batch which won awards and 80% 6-row in the second batch.
Mash in the main mash with everything except the grits and 20% of the malt at 148.
Mash the grits and the other 20% of the malt together at 156F for 30 minutes and then bring it to a boil for 60 minutes.
Add this back to the main mash to bring it up to 156 or so.
Cluster for bittering and noble hops for flavor and aroma - about 35 to 40 BU's.
I used 2206 in mine, because that's the lager yeast I had at the time.

Why the 60 min boil on the corn? I thought the small starch granules would be taken care of before that, I could be wrong. Are you after more melanoidin formation?
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: morticaixavier on January 16, 2014, 08:07:03 PM
I've made it twice, pretty much following Jeff Renner's recipe per Jeff Rankert.  It's a Jeff thing.
I used 20% Quaker old fashioned grits and 80% pils malt in the first batch which won awards and 80% 6-row in the second batch.
Mash in the main mash with everything except the grits and 20% of the malt at 148.
Mash the grits and the other 20% of the malt together at 156F for 30 minutes and then bring it to a boil for 60 minutes.
Add this back to the main mash to bring it up to 156 or so.
Cluster for bittering and noble hops for flavor and aroma - about 35 to 40 BU's.
I used 2206 in mine, because that's the lager yeast I had at the time.

Why the 60 min boil on the corn? I thought the small starch granules would be taken care of before that, I could be wrong. Are you after more melanoidin formation?

old fashioned grits are pretty chunky. I know when I cook them they are edible at 30 minutes but they are still 'al dente' if you want mush it could well take an hour.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: hopfenundmalz on January 16, 2014, 08:32:01 PM
I've made it twice, pretty much following Jeff Renner's recipe per Jeff Rankert.  It's a Jeff thing.
I used 20% Quaker old fashioned grits and 80% pils malt in the first batch which won awards and 80% 6-row in the second batch.
Mash in the main mash with everything except the grits and 20% of the malt at 148.
Mash the grits and the other 20% of the malt together at 156F for 30 minutes and then bring it to a boil for 60 minutes.
Add this back to the main mash to bring it up to 156 or so.
Cluster for bittering and noble hops for flavor and aroma - about 35 to 40 BU's.
I used 2206 in mine, because that's the lager yeast I had at the time.

Why the 60 min boil on the corn? I thought the small starch granules would be taken care of before that, I could be wrong. Are you after more melanoidin formation?
That is what I missed. I am using corn meal tomorrow, 20 min or so is good. The one time the club did a beer with grits from South Carolina - that was forever, about 2 hours. those were chunky!
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: jeffy on January 16, 2014, 11:17:10 PM
I've made it twice, pretty much following Jeff Renner's recipe per Jeff Rankert.  It's a Jeff thing.
I used 20% Quaker old fashioned grits and 80% pils malt in the first batch which won awards and 80% 6-row in the second batch.
Mash in the main mash with everything except the grits and 20% of the malt at 148.
Mash the grits and the other 20% of the malt together at 156F for 30 minutes and then bring it to a boil for 60 minutes.
Add this back to the main mash to bring it up to 156 or so.
Cluster for bittering and noble hops for flavor and aroma - about 35 to 40 BU's.
I used 2206 in mine, because that's the lager yeast I had at the time.

Why the 60 min boil on the corn? I thought the small starch granules would be taken care of before that, I could be wrong. Are you after more melanoidin formation?
That is what I missed. I am using corn meal tomorrow, 20 min or so is good. The one time the club did a beer with grits from South Carolina - that was forever, about 2 hours. those were chunky!
I will say that the grits and malt mixture after the 60 minute decoction boil tasted great, better than breakfast grits.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: klickitat jim on January 16, 2014, 11:26:25 PM
I think it's awesome that the classic native American hops name rhymes with Custer
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: punatic on January 17, 2014, 01:01:47 AM
I think it's awesome that the classic native American hops name rhymes with Custer

Not really classic, more just for General use...
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: HoosierBrew on January 17, 2014, 01:21:58 AM
I think it's awesome that the classic native American hops name rhymes with Custer

Not really classic, more just for General use...

Wonder if they grow in Little Big Horn......just sayin'
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: morticaixavier on January 17, 2014, 03:36:25 PM
I think it's awesome that the classic native American hops name rhymes with Custer

Not really classic, more just for General use...

Wonder if they grow in Little Big Horn......just sayin'

aww man, if you guys don't quit it I'm just gonna massacre the lot of you! (too far?)
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: Three on January 17, 2014, 06:15:28 PM
IIRC, Jeff has modiifed that schedule significantly since the article was written.  I'd do 30 min. at 144 and 30 min. at 158.  hopfenmalz has mentioned that Jeff often uses polenta mashed in a pressure cooker.  Here's a more recent article by Jeff Renner, updating his procedure....http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/attachments/0000/1298/SOzym00-Pilsner.pdf

Thanks for posting this link Denny! 

I'll brew both.....
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: hopfenundmalz on January 17, 2014, 06:37:59 PM
Jeff uses Mt. Hood and Cluster these days. The cereal mash is done in a pressure cooker, there was a Zymurgy article on that technique. RO water and a tsp of CaCl2. WLP 833 yeast.

Bob Barrett and I brewed a batch with Jeff last year for the BJCP reception at the Philly NHC. I can post the recipe later, but I am brewing my CAP right now, and am in the boil stage.
Title: Re: Classic American Pilsner
Post by: goschman on January 17, 2014, 07:03:02 PM
Man all this talk makes me really want to brew one or taste one even...