Author Topic: Is it normal for Hefeweizen to become clear?  (Read 2366 times)

Offline midtex

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Is it normal for Hefeweizen to become clear?
« on: March 02, 2010, 01:07:28 PM »
I bottled my first hefeweizen about 2 weeks ago and I have been noticing a subtle flavor change after the first week. I tried pouring one last night without rousing the yeast sediment because I wanted to determine how much of the flavor was coming from the yeast. It poured nearly totally clear. Is that normal? I thought there was residual protein in wheat beer that added to the cloudiness and it wasn't simply the yeast causing cloudiness? I brewed it from extract only and it was awesome in the first few days, but it is losing a lot of the "wheat" character (breadiness?). I wonder about the temperature of my refrigerator - I am using a digital thermometer and the temperature did fall down to about 29 degrees a couple of times until I adjusted it up to about 38. Could getting too cold cause damage to the beer? I never saw any ice in the bottles. Any suggestions? Thanks in advance for your time.

Offline babalu87

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Re: Is it normal for Hefeweizen to become clear?
« Reply #1 on: March 02, 2010, 01:26:33 PM »
Yes

Seems to happen quicker with Dunkelweizens for some reason though.........at least for me.

Speaking of
Does anyone know if judges regularly rouse the yeast when judging?
Jeff

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Offline dimik

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Re: Is it normal for Hefeweizen to become clear?
« Reply #2 on: March 02, 2010, 01:29:22 PM »
I have the same thing happening to me. The clearest beers by far I've ever made were wheats, hefe included. It just seems like as soon as you bottle it, everything just drops like a rock, leaving behind brilliantly clear beer. I just swirl the bottle around in the end to rouse the sediment, but still, that's just weird.
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Offline joelambic

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Re: Is it normal for Hefeweizen to become clear?
« Reply #3 on: March 02, 2010, 02:37:53 PM »
Speaking of
Does anyone know if judges regularly rouse the yeast when judging?
I haven't seen it done routinely at competitions I've attended.  I didn't when I have judged the category in the past.

Offline bluesman

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Re: Is it normal for Hefeweizen to become clear?
« Reply #4 on: March 02, 2010, 02:43:43 PM »
Speaking of
Does anyone know if judges regularly rouse the yeast when judging?
I haven't seen it done routinely at competitions I've attended.  I didn't when I have judged the category in the past.

Great question. I would bet they don't intentionally. Each judge is different so it may vary.  :-\
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Offline midtex

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Re: Is it normal for Hefeweizen to become clear?
« Reply #5 on: March 02, 2010, 02:59:17 PM »
Speaking of
Does anyone know if judges regularly rouse the yeast when judging?
I haven't seen it done routinely at competitions I've attended.  I didn't when I have judged the category in the past.

Great question. I would bet they don't intentionally. Each judge is different so it may vary.  :-\

Hard to believe that they wouldn't rouse the yeast. Go to any of the Bavarian brewery websites and they all present proper pouring techniques that include rousing the yeast. That's why I asked the question about how to rouse yeast in kegged hefeweizen a couple of weeks ago. I don't think the style can be presented properly without the yeast.

Offline babalu87

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Re: Is it normal for Hefeweizen to become clear?
« Reply #6 on: March 02, 2010, 04:33:54 PM »
Speaking of
Does anyone know if judges regularly rouse the yeast when judging?
I haven't seen it done routinely at competitions I've attended.  I didn't when I have judged the category in the past.

Really?
This needs to be addressed ASAP
How can one drink a Hefe/Dunkelweizen without swirling and pouring??????????????????????
Jeff

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IIPA, Stout, Hefeweizen, Hallertau Pale Ale, Bitter

Primary:
Hefeweizen,Berliner Weisse, Mead

Offline theDarkSide

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Re: Is it normal for Hefeweizen to become clear?
« Reply #7 on: March 03, 2010, 06:40:24 AM »
Stan Hieronymous was just discussing this on The Brewing Network this past Sunday and talking about his new book, Brewing With Wheat.  He said basically as soon as its bottled it starts to clear.  This is why wheat beer kegs are stored upside down so when they are tapped, the yeast get all stirred up before serving.

They also mentioned for competitions to include in the notes to have the bottle turned upside down a couple times before pouring.
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Re: Is it normal for Hefeweizen to become clear?
« Reply #8 on: March 03, 2010, 06:41:10 AM »
The wheat protein should add some cloudiness in addition to the yeast. One thing you can try is adding a small amount of wheat flour to the boil to secure more cloudiness. But, to answer your question, they can become clear over time. How much wheat did you use?
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Offline Kaiser

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Re: Is it normal for Hefeweizen to become clear?
« Reply #9 on: March 03, 2010, 06:49:42 AM »
One thing you can try is adding a small amount of wheat flour to the boil to secure more cloudiness.

While this secures cloudiness, the haze will mostly come from starch and not protein. This may give the beer a starchy taste.

Midtex, how much wheat did you use?

Kai

Offline midtex

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Re: Is it normal for Hefeweizen to become clear?
« Reply #10 on: March 03, 2010, 07:34:09 AM »
I used a Breiss LME that is 65% wheat. Is that what you mean, the percentage? As for OG and FG, I don't have a hydrometer yet - this is my first homebrew. I used the TastyBrew calculators to decide on my quantities, although they don't have Wheat LME in the list of fermentables, so I used "Light Malt Extract Syrup". My calculated OG and FG are 1.053 and 1.013 assuming that "Light Malt Extract Syrup" is a good approximation to this wheat LME I used.
« Last Edit: March 03, 2010, 07:52:22 AM by midtex »

Offline midtex

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Re: Is it normal for Hefeweizen to become clear?
« Reply #11 on: March 03, 2010, 08:18:56 AM »
I'm still wondering about storage temperature and it's effect on accellerating the yeast and protein to precipitate out faster? Weihenstephaner prints on their labels to store at 46o-52oF. I believe I stored it too cold. With the beer sitting cleared, could the yeast and protein flavors become less homogenous so that even when swirled to remix, the beer still doesn't taste the same as before separation occured? I know that's a lot of speculation, but I will definitely experiment and store the next batch at 52oF to see.

I also wonder about boiling techniqes and how that might effect the protein stability? I read about hot-breaks and cold-breaks and am not experienced or knowlegeable enough to understand whether that might have any influence on how stable the cloudiness is of the finished product? Sorry if these are not logical questions.

Offline Kaiser

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Re: Is it normal for Hefeweizen to become clear?
« Reply #12 on: March 03, 2010, 11:12:49 AM »
I also wonder about boiling techniqes and how that might effect the protein stability? I read about hot-breaks and cold-breaks and am not experienced or knowlegeable enough to understand whether that might have any influence on how stable the cloudiness is of the finished product? Sorry if these are not logical questions.

While there are certainly ways to promote hazy beer though “incorrect” boiling you don’t want to go that route since there will also be adverse effects on beer flavor if you mess too much with pH, boil time and boil-off rate. At this point I don’t know where your problem might be. The malt extract could be at least partly at fault here.

Wheat beers have a natural tendency to develop more haze not only because wheat has more protein but also because the proteins it contributes are different from barley proteins and they are more likely to form hazes.

At this point I suggest you try the beer w/ and w/o rousing the sediment and test which one you prefer.

Kai

Offline denny

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Re: Is it normal for Hefeweizen to become clear?
« Reply #13 on: March 03, 2010, 11:35:49 AM »
The malt extract could be at least partly at fault here.

This is what I'm thinking also.
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Offline midtex

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Re: Is it normal for Hefeweizen to become clear?
« Reply #14 on: March 03, 2010, 12:41:22 PM »

At this point I suggest you try the beer w/ and w/o rousing the sediment and test which one you prefer.

I have definitely tried that and it's better with the yeast. I might not have a problem at all, since everyone is saying that it's normal for the beer to begin to clear after bottling. I guess at this point I'm trying to toss ideas around as to why this happens, will it effect the taste, and are there things that can be done to minimize or slow the clearing as much as possible. I can think of a few things that might cause the clearing after bottling:

  • refrigeration
    pressure
    carbonation

I have another batch fermenting right now, so I might try different storage temperatures as well as different units of CO2 to see what results I can observe..