Author Topic: Help on a lemongrass farmhouse!  (Read 4353 times)

Offline kraftwerk

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Help on a lemongrass farmhouse!
« on: May 09, 2012, 11:07:11 PM »
Ok, so up next is a lemongrass golden farmhouse. Not too far off from a Blonde but definitely using WLP 670 American Farmhouse yeast.

My question is this: How should I infuse with lemongrass? Should I dry hop with dried lemongrass? Or fresh lemongrass? OR I was also thinking a cold water infusion of lemongrass that I can add during fermentation, possibly to avoid heavy herb/tannin notes. Should I add during primary or secondary? How much? This is my first time using anything other than hops to flavor a beer. Here's the grain bill:

7.25 lb Pale Malt
4.00 lb Wheat Malt
1.00 lb Munich I
0.75 lb Caravienne 20
0.50 lb Light Candi Sugar

1 oz Tettnanger
1 oz Hallertauer
1 oz Saaz

How should I mash to get a good balance of medium body with a touch of sweetness and dry finish? Thanks for any and all help!
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Offline theoman

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Re: Help on a lemongrass farmhouse!
« Reply #1 on: May 10, 2012, 05:44:22 AM »
Make a lemongrass tea (put a bunch crushed lemongrass in a pot of water and boil). See how it tastes. If you like it, add it near or after the end of the boil.

Offline kylekohlmorgen

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Re: Help on a lemongrass farmhouse!
« Reply #2 on: May 10, 2012, 06:15:16 AM »
I know Lemongrass' oil is extracted for a wide range of uses (even in making Citronella!). I am concerned about your head retention if you added fresh lemongrass. I'm not sure if this is a valid point. Have you found any commercial beers w/ lemongrass?

I wonder if you could test it out by just dunking a lemongrass stalk in a wheat beer and see if it killed the head?

EDIT:

Here are some references I found after I posted:

http://www.probrewer.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=4082&highlight=lemongrass

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f12/how-much-lemongrass-wheat-beer-56767/
« Last Edit: May 10, 2012, 06:23:18 AM by kylekohlmorgen »
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Offline kraftwerk

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Re: Help on a lemongrass farmhouse!
« Reply #3 on: May 10, 2012, 03:56:28 PM »
I've never had any commercial examples. I went to an asian supermarket today and bought about 3 lbs of fresh stuff for $2.99! I'm going to test it in hot water before adding to the boil. If I like it I might even save it for a late fermentation addition. We'll see how it goes. Thanks for the help!
Beer is like music. I don't have a favorite. I'll take a well-made example of any style!

Offline jeffy

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Re: Help on a lemongrass farmhouse!
« Reply #4 on: May 10, 2012, 04:08:15 PM »
I had a key lime mead last year that seemed to be lacking a little something, so I added some fresh lemongrass directly to it.  I put the fresh cut lemongrass into my toaster oven on low for a few minutes to kill any bad stuff and then put the mead and the lemongrass into a plastic soda bottle and carbonated it with a carbonator cap.  It added a nice acidity to the mead, made it pop a bit, kind of like adding a pinch of salt to a steak.  It should be a nice addition to a farmhouse ale.
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Offline s rails

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Re: Help on a lemongrass farmhouse!
« Reply #5 on: May 10, 2012, 09:59:48 PM »
There are some small breweries producing lemongrass beers.  Widmer makes a Lemongrass Wheat Beer and Free State Brewing in Kansas makes a Lemongrass Rye Beer.  If you Google Lemongrass Beer or other variations you may find more examples.  I have thought about making a beer with Lemongrass.  My only concern has been the quantity to add and when to add it. I found a recipe on another forum a year ago but can't remember where.  I did copy it down and make some slight changes in Beer Smith.  I plan on brewing in sometime this summer.  Here's the recipe I have:
BeerSmith 2 Recipe Printout - http://www.beersmith.com
Recipe: Lemon Grass Rye Ale
Brewer: Sean Railing
Asst Brewer:
Style: American Wheat or Rye Beer
TYPE: All Grain
Taste: (35.0)

Recipe Specifications
--------------------------
Boil Size: 6.29 gal
Post Boil Volume: 5.72 gal
Batch Size (fermenter): 5.50 gal   
Bottling Volume: 5.50 gal
Estimated OG: 1.063 SG
Estimated Color: 6.3 SRM
Estimated IBU: 29.3 IBUs
Brewhouse Efficiency: 65.00 %
Est Mash Efficiency: 65.0 %
Boil Time: 60 Minutes

Ingredients:
------------
Amt                   Name                                           Type          #           %/IBU         
8.0 oz                Rice Hulls (0.0 SRM)                           Adjunct       1        3.3 %         
8 lbs 9.4 oz        Pale Malt (2 Row) US (1.8 SRM)              Grain         2        56.4 %       
3 lbs 10.9 oz      Rye, Flaked (2.0 SRM)                       Grain         3        24.2 %       
2 lbs 7.3 oz        Munich Malt (9.0 SRM)                       Grain         4        16.1 %       
4.40 oz              Lemongrass (Mash 0.0 mins)                  Herb          5        -             
14.96 g              Magnum USA [12.90 %] - Boil 60.0 min     Hop           6        22.3 IBUs     
1.00 Items          Whirlfloc Tablet (Boil 15.0 mins)           Fining        7        -             
4.40 oz              Lemongrass (Boil 15.0 mins)                Herb          8        -             
20.00 g              Cascade [5.40 %] - Boil 15.0 min            Hop           9        6.2 IBUs     
1.00 Items          Servomyces (Boil 10.0 mins)                 Other         10       -             
6.20 g                Citra [12.00 %] - Boil 2.0 min              Hop           11       0.7 IBUs     
1.0 pkg              California Ale (White Labs #WLP001)    Yeast         12       -             
Mash Schedule: Single Infusion, Medium Body, Batch Sparge
Total Grain Weight: 15 lbs 3.5 oz
----------------------------
Name              Description                             Step Temperat Step Time     
Mash In           Add 19.01 qt of water at 166.0 F        154.0 F       60 min       
Sparge: Batch sparge with 2 steps (0.22gal, 3.14gal) of 168.0 F water
Notes:
------


Created with BeerSmith 2 - http://www.beersmith.com
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
The recipe is similar to what I found in the other forum.  I read the entire thread and everyone seemed to be local members of a homebrew club in Kansas.  They all had tried the finished product and really liked it.  Based on their comments I jotted down the recipe and tweaked it for my system and hops I have on hand.  Hope that helps.
« Last Edit: May 10, 2012, 10:09:00 PM by s rails »
Sean Railing
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Offline s rails

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Re: Help on a lemongrass farmhouse!
« Reply #6 on: May 10, 2012, 10:02:46 PM »
Sean Railing
"Drink Beer, Be Happy, Live Longer"

Fermenting: 
Rye Pale Ale
Kegged or Bottled:
Bock, Bitter, ESB, Dubbel,  Baltic Porter, Unblended Lambic, Sanctification Clone, American Barleywine

Member San Joaquin Worthogs (Admin Vice President 2014)

Offline kraftwerk

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Re: Help on a lemongrass farmhouse!
« Reply #7 on: May 10, 2012, 10:54:52 PM »
Right on! Thanks for the advice, everyone. I'm chilling the wort to room temp right now and will pitch in the morning.

After trying a hot infusion with water, I decided to wait until racking. It tasted a little grassy and vegetal so I'm hoping for a sweeter, brighter citrus flavor. At that point I will chop it up and throw it in the fermenter.

S rail's rye lemongrass recipe above looks interesting. Spicy and exotic might be a good combo. Mine is going to be a surprise beer for my buddy's wedding in July. Champagne bottles with corks and cages should be classy, eh?

Beer is like music. I don't have a favorite. I'll take a well-made example of any style!

Offline lornemagill

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Re: Help on a lemongrass farmhouse!
« Reply #8 on: May 11, 2012, 04:58:40 AM »
i did a 5 gallon extract of lemongrass wheat a few years ago from austin homebrew and it called for 1oz of dried lemongrass at flameout.  although i havent made it recently i really liked it and would make it again.