Author Topic: kolsch observations  (Read 3850 times)

Offline gman23

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kolsch observations
« on: February 24, 2015, 03:02:23 PM »
So I brewed my first 'to style' kolsch. It is still carbing up and needs more cold conditioning but the differences compared to my 'quasi-kolsch' are astounding. I used continental malts vs domestic and a FWH addition of noble hops. I overshot my gravity and right now it doesn't seem to be as delicate as I would like. It kind of reminds me of a less bitter Stella Artois which I am not sure is good or bad. It tastes more Czech pils to me.

My question is what negative impacts has anyone had using WLP029? There is still a lot of suspended yeast so I am curious if that is making the beer tastes stronger. Will carbonation and cold conditioning get me closer to that classic kolsch taste?

85% schill pilsner
10% schill Vienna
5% wheat

1.050 (overshot my OG by 3 points)

Tettnang FWH with some N brewer thrown in

~26 IBUs (I pushed this up a bit when I overshot my OG. Maybe it's extra bitterness which is taking away what I am looking for?)

WLP029 - fermented at 62
On Tap/Bottled: Kurbis Marzen, Red Rye, Vienna Lager, Dry Hopped Peach Cider       

Fermenting: Imperial Porter, Hopfenbier
Up Next: Maibock, Braunbier

Offline Wort-H.O.G.

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Re: kolsch observations
« Reply #1 on: February 24, 2015, 03:10:22 PM »
So I brewed my first 'to style' kolsch. It is still carbing up and needs more cold conditioning but the differences compared to my 'quasi-kolsch' are astounding. I used continental malts vs domestic and a FWH addition of noble hops. I overshot my gravity and right now it doesn't seem to be as delicate as I would like. It kind of reminds me of a less bitter Stella Artois which I am not sure is good or bad. It tastes more Czech pils to me.

My question is what negative impacts has anyone had using WLP029? There is still a lot of suspended yeast so I am curious if that is making the beer tastes stronger. Will carbonation and cold conditioning get me closer to that classic kolsch taste?

85% schill pilsner
10% schill Vienna
5% wheat

1.050 (overshot my OG by 3 points)

Tettnang FWH with some N brewer thrown in

~26 IBUs (I pushed this up a bit when I overshot my OG. Maybe it's extra bitterness which is taking away what I am looking for?)

WLP029 - fermented at 62

what PH did you hit in the mash? I pitch cooler with wlp029 (52F if i recall) . IBU and schedule, and everything else looks pretty good and similar to ones i've made.
Ken- Chagrin Falls, OH
CPT, U.S.Army
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Harveys-Brewhaus/405092862905115

http://braukaiser.com/wiki/index.php?title=The_Science_of_Mashing

Serving:        In Process:
Vienna IPA          O'Fest
Dort
Mead                 
Cider                         
Ger'merican Blonde
Amber Ale
Next:
Ger Pils
O'Fest

Offline gman23

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Re: kolsch observations
« Reply #2 on: February 24, 2015, 03:15:26 PM »
5.4 mash pH, yellow balanced water profile. I have used 029 at these temps with good results so I am just wondering if my palate is confused by a more authentic version since this is something I rarely do. I think I definitely understand now people recommend continental malts for continental styles...
« Last Edit: February 24, 2015, 03:21:43 PM by goschman »
On Tap/Bottled: Kurbis Marzen, Red Rye, Vienna Lager, Dry Hopped Peach Cider       

Fermenting: Imperial Porter, Hopfenbier
Up Next: Maibock, Braunbier

Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: kolsch observations
« Reply #3 on: February 24, 2015, 03:21:49 PM »
There is still a lot of suspended yeast so I am curious if that is making the beer tastes stronger.

Yep.  A lot of suspended yeast can give the beer a more harsh, bitter taste. I'd crash it for a few days (or a week). When a little more settles out, I think you'll like a lot better.
Jon H.

Offline toby

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Re: kolsch observations
« Reply #4 on: February 24, 2015, 03:24:02 PM »
My question is what negative impacts has anyone had using WLP029? There is still a lot of suspended yeast so I am curious if that is making the beer tastes stronger. Will carbonation and cold conditioning get me closer to that classic kolsch taste? [...]
WLP029 - fermented at 62
62 beer temp or ambient?  I use Wyeast 2565 which is supposed to be the same strain.  I ferment at 58-60 ambient.  62 ambient is slightly high.  Both yeasts are very low flocculating.  I usually ferment for a couple weeks and then transfer and cold crash in a keg.  After another couple weeks cold conditioning, I'll check and transfer to another keg if it needs more clarifying.

Offline gman23

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Re: kolsch observations
« Reply #5 on: February 24, 2015, 03:26:44 PM »
There is still a lot of suspended yeast so I am curious if that is making the beer tastes stronger.

Yep.  A lot of suspended yeast can give the beer a more harsh, bitter taste. I'd crash it for a few days (or a week). When a little more settles out, I think you'll like a lot better.

Thanks. After I hit my FG I brought it down to 48F over the course of a week before kegging. A lot of the yeast dropped out but some did get to the keg. I fined with gelatin and It is now at 38F.
On Tap/Bottled: Kurbis Marzen, Red Rye, Vienna Lager, Dry Hopped Peach Cider       

Fermenting: Imperial Porter, Hopfenbier
Up Next: Maibock, Braunbier

Offline gman23

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Re: kolsch observations
« Reply #6 on: February 24, 2015, 03:28:05 PM »
My question is what negative impacts has anyone had using WLP029? There is still a lot of suspended yeast so I am curious if that is making the beer tastes stronger. Will carbonation and cold conditioning get me closer to that classic kolsch taste? [...]
WLP029 - fermented at 62
62 beer temp or ambient?  I use Wyeast 2565 which is supposed to be the same strain.  I ferment at 58-60 ambient.  62 ambient is slightly high.  Both yeasts are very low flocculating.  I usually ferment for a couple weeks and then transfer and cold crash in a keg.  After another couple weeks cold conditioning, I'll check and transfer to another keg if it needs more clarifying.

Beer temp it was very sluggish at 60F so I brought it up a little. Others here were saying these are different strains and from what I remember what clears a bit easier than the other. I have not tried 2565 yet...

I now have an amber on the slurry struggling along at 59F...I am fighting raising the temp and will let it rise naturally after a few days before crashing.
« Last Edit: February 24, 2015, 03:31:38 PM by goschman »
On Tap/Bottled: Kurbis Marzen, Red Rye, Vienna Lager, Dry Hopped Peach Cider       

Fermenting: Imperial Porter, Hopfenbier
Up Next: Maibock, Braunbier

Offline Wort-H.O.G.

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Re: kolsch observations
« Reply #7 on: February 24, 2015, 03:31:30 PM »
My question is what negative impacts has anyone had using WLP029? There is still a lot of suspended yeast so I am curious if that is making the beer tastes stronger. Will carbonation and cold conditioning get me closer to that classic kolsch taste? [...]
WLP029 - fermented at 62
62 beer temp or ambient?  I use Wyeast 2565 which is supposed to be the same strain.  I ferment at 58-60 ambient.  62 ambient is slightly high.  Both yeasts are very low flocculating.  I usually ferment for a couple weeks and then transfer and cold crash in a keg.  After another couple weeks cold conditioning, I'll check and transfer to another keg if it needs more clarifying.

Beer temp it was very sluggish at 60F so I brought it up a little. Others here were saying these are different strains. I have not tried 2565 yet...

I now have an amber on the slurry struggling along at 59F...

only used wlp029. it will go slower in the 50's but moves along like a lager fermentation will. near the end i just ramp up  to d-rest temps low to mid 60's and finish up.
Ken- Chagrin Falls, OH
CPT, U.S.Army
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Harveys-Brewhaus/405092862905115

http://braukaiser.com/wiki/index.php?title=The_Science_of_Mashing

Serving:        In Process:
Vienna IPA          O'Fest
Dort
Mead                 
Cider                         
Ger'merican Blonde
Amber Ale
Next:
Ger Pils
O'Fest

Offline udubdawg

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Re: kolsch observations
« Reply #8 on: February 24, 2015, 03:34:10 PM »
the drying finish, crispness but short of tartness, and decent carbonation level do tend to emphasize hops/bitterness a bit.  Any yeasty or protein creaminess in this will hurt the impression IMO.

I have no experience with FWH in Kolsch.  Hmm...

How's the 029 yeast character right now?

my only issues with the yeast, which I love, is while it ferments better low, if there is not a good sized pitch it can struggle at low temp.  My first effort with the yeast refused to work at all until warmed to 70F.  At that temp it makes a decent amount of sulfur. When warmer it also makes the fruitiness, while still very pleasant, excessive for this delicate style.  In such a case I had good results with 4/5 Kolsch and 1/5 American Light Lager in the keg to bring back into style range.  But for you, too warm does not appear to be likely at 62.

...I'd give it a bit more time in the fridge and keep tasting as it clears.

Offline gman23

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Re: kolsch observations
« Reply #9 on: February 24, 2015, 03:42:42 PM »
Thanks for all of the feedback. In the past I probably have fermented 65-66F and got more fruity characteristics. I get too caught up in manufacturer recommendations which say it doesn't ferment well below 62F. I realize they state this for those not using starters so that successful fermentation is more likely.

My past attempts had a small amount of late Amarillo hops so I can't really compare them because the flavor profile has changed drastically...
On Tap/Bottled: Kurbis Marzen, Red Rye, Vienna Lager, Dry Hopped Peach Cider       

Fermenting: Imperial Porter, Hopfenbier
Up Next: Maibock, Braunbier

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Re: kolsch observations
« Reply #10 on: February 24, 2015, 04:31:28 PM »
I have no experience with FWH in Kolsch.  Hmm...
I FWH everything now ever since I first tried it.  No 60 minute additions for me.

Offline gman23

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Re: kolsch observations
« Reply #11 on: February 24, 2015, 04:44:36 PM »
I have no experience with FWH in Kolsch.  Hmm...
I FWH everything now ever since I first tried it.  No 60 minute additions for me.

I gave it shot after a recommendation by Wort-H.O.G. I believe. My tettnang were only 2.1% AA so I threw in a small amount of 10% N. Brewer to avoid having to use such a large volume. I think I will bump my IBUs down a bit next time to get my BU:OG below 0.5
« Last Edit: February 24, 2015, 04:49:55 PM by goschman »
On Tap/Bottled: Kurbis Marzen, Red Rye, Vienna Lager, Dry Hopped Peach Cider       

Fermenting: Imperial Porter, Hopfenbier
Up Next: Maibock, Braunbier

Offline coolman26

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Re: kolsch observations
« Reply #12 on: February 24, 2015, 04:54:52 PM »
When the ice is gone next week around the brewery, I'm brewing Kolsch 029 and Alt 036.  I planned to ferment them at the same temp of 62-63.  After this feedback I'm not sure.  I normally use 2565 and got 029 after reading here.  I don't think 036 will handle the high 50's.   
Jeff B

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Re: kolsch observations
« Reply #13 on: February 24, 2015, 04:58:43 PM »
WLP029 is a very clean fermenter that leaves the beer with a touch of apple and pear ester and tends to remind me a bit like chardonnay. This yeast can stall near the end if the temp is not raised up into the 60s, I have had it happen a few times, but it really works best if you can pitch at 58 and maintain this for a couple of days before ramping the temp into the low to mid 60s for the duration.

It is very powdery, low flocculating strain and can be a bugger to get to clear. But a little fining should do the trick.

BTW: The picture in my avatar is a crystal clear kolsch brewed with wLP029.

Offline coolman26

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Re: kolsch observations
« Reply #14 on: February 24, 2015, 05:25:32 PM »
I read through the reviews on the WL site.  Brewers used both 029 and 036 and stated their preferred temp was 57 for 029 and 52 for 036.  Nothing like their recommended temps.  I'm going to ferment both at 58 like you recommend and see what it turns out.  I'm going to pitch at "lager" quantities.  Thanks
Jeff B