Author Topic: first helles help  (Read 1132 times)

Offline gman23

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first helles help
« on: February 28, 2015, 12:13:43 AM »
Really digging light german beers lately. Want to do something really simple.

97% pilsner
3% melanoiden

Mash at 148F for 75 min?

FWH noble hops to 18 IBUs

W34/70 yeast

Is the melanoiden appropriate? Anything that would be better? Give me recommendations.
On Tap/Bottled: Hopfenbier, Kurbis Marzen, Red Rye, Vienna Lager,      

Fermenting: Imperial Porter
Up Next: Maibock, Braunbier

Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: first helles help
« Reply #1 on: February 28, 2015, 02:06:32 AM »
Grits is OK. Mash high pH to help maltyness. Weigh hops accurately, by grams if you can, a small error in weight can give an error in IBUs. Noble hops, HMF is good. Look at Martin's Munich Water article in Zymurgy for a good water profile.
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Offline quattlebaum

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Re: first helles help
« Reply #2 on: February 28, 2015, 12:33:23 PM »
I dont think the melanoiden is necessary however it's appropriate. It does have a bit more body than the other German light lagers. I like to get the extra body from Dextrine/carafoam malt and also like a bit of light Munich but thats just me. Although out of style i like mine a bit bigger and "hopper".  Mash temp is ok i like mine well attenuated also. 1.010 to 1.012. I agree with the small details that hopfenundmaiz states. Low bicarb water and low on the sulfate and chloride along with BIG pitch and clean fermentation. Good German malts not domestic. This is one that i really like
89% German Pils
7% Carafoam
4% light munich
German tradition bittered to  16ibus at 60min
Spalt at 4 ibus at 20min
 1 oz Tettnang flame out with 20min WP
OG 1.054
FG 1.012
34/70
Around 24 ibus total

Offline dzlater

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Re: first helles help
« Reply #3 on: February 28, 2015, 12:42:20 PM »
I brewed this and it came out well.


10 lbs                Pilsner (2 Row) Ger (2.0 SRM)   89.9 %       
1 lbs                 Munich Malt (9.0 SRM)                 9.0 %         
2.0 oz                Melanoiden Malt (20.0 SRM)        1.1 %         
2.0 oz                Hallertauer Mittelfrueh [2.70 %] - First Hop   24.4 IBUs     
1.0 pkg               Bohemian Lager (Wyeast Labs #2124)
« Last Edit: February 28, 2015, 12:44:41 PM by dzlater »
Dan S. from NJ

Offline majorvices

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Re: first helles help
« Reply #4 on: February 28, 2015, 12:58:52 PM »
What you have is fine. I do like a little Munich in my Helles.

Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: first helles help
« Reply #5 on: February 28, 2015, 02:37:45 PM »
Grits is OK. Mash high pH to help maltyness. Weigh hops accurately, by grams if you can, a small error in weight can give an error in IBUs. Noble hops, HMF is good. Look at Martin's Munich Water article in Zymurgy for a good water profile.
I was on my phone yesterday, and now want to explain a little more on the weight part.

The first couple of Helles we brewed were knocked for being too bitter. The amount of IBUs targeted was only 20, and when I tasted it, yeah the Master level judge was right the bitterness was too high. Even for a 10 gallon batch it seems you are just waving some hops over the kettle for a Helles! Recently I realized Mrs. R would weigh hops on the same scale we weigh grains on, and that there must be some sticktion at low weights that cause it to weigh a little low at 1 oz. It is fine with a 100 gram test weight, but a Hopunion 1 oz package only weighed about 22 grams on that scale, but weighed 28.5 grams on the small gram scale used for water salt additions. An "ounce" on the bigger scale would result in too large a bittering charge. The Helles that is carbing up right now will show me if I have found the root cause to my bitter Helles issue.
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Offline majorvices

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Re: first helles help
« Reply #6 on: February 28, 2015, 02:43:05 PM »
Grits is OK. Mash high pH to help maltyness. Weigh hops accurately, by grams if you can, a small error in weight can give an error in IBUs. Noble hops, HMF is good. Look at Martin's Munich Water article in Zymurgy for a good water profile.
I was on my phone yesterday, and now want to explain a little more on the weight part.

The first couple of Helles we brewed were knocked for being too bitter. The amount of IBUs targeted was only 20, and when I tasted it, yeah the Master level judge was right the bitterness was too high. Even for a 10 gallon batch it seems you are just waving some hops over the kettle for a Helles! Recently I realized Mrs. R would weigh hops on the same scale we weigh grains on, and that there must be some sticktion at low weights that cause it to weigh a little low at 1 oz. It is fine with a 100 gram test weight, but a Hopunion 1 oz package only weighed about 22 grams on that scale, but weighed 28.5 grams on the small gram scale used for water salt additions. An "ounce" on the bigger scale would result in too large a bittering charge. The Helles that is carbing up right now will show me if I have found the root cause to my bitter Helles issue.


Hmmmmm .... I was hoping you were back to explain the addition of "grits"....

Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: first helles help
« Reply #7 on: February 28, 2015, 02:49:08 PM »
Grits is OK. Mash high pH to help maltyness. Weigh hops accurately, by grams if you can, a small error in weight can give an error in IBUs. Noble hops, HMF is good. Look at Martin's Munich Water article in Zymurgy for a good water profile.
I was on my phone yesterday, and now want to explain a little more on the weight part.

The first couple of Helles we brewed were knocked for being too bitter. The amount of IBUs targeted was only 20, and when I tasted it, yeah the Master level judge was right the bitterness was too high. Even for a 10 gallon batch it seems you are just waving some hops over the kettle for a Helles! Recently I realized Mrs. R would weigh hops on the same scale we weigh grains on, and that there must be some sticktion at low weights that cause it to weigh a little low at 1 oz. It is fine with a 100 gram test weight, but a Hopunion 1 oz package only weighed about 22 grams on that scale, but weighed 28.5 grams on the small gram scale used for water salt additions. An "ounce" on the bigger scale would result in too large a bittering charge. The Helles that is carbing up right now will show me if I have found the root cause to my bitter Helles issue.


Hmmmmm .... I was hoping you were back to explain the addition of "grits"....

Damn phone! GRIST!

Good one Keith!

At least I can't blame that on cold fingers, it was 66F yesterday.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2015, 02:52:03 PM by hopfenundmalz »
Jeff Rankert
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Offline gman23

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Re: first helles help
« Reply #8 on: February 28, 2015, 06:10:16 PM »
Thanks everyone. I will probably throw some light Munich in. I already measure my hop in grams so I should be good there. Definitely will shoot for under 18 ibus. Yellow malty profile?
On Tap/Bottled: Hopfenbier, Kurbis Marzen, Red Rye, Vienna Lager,      

Fermenting: Imperial Porter
Up Next: Maibock, Braunbier

Offline bboy9000

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Re: first helles help
« Reply #9 on: February 28, 2015, 06:27:31 PM »
I'd go for a Munich profile.  It may be close to the same.
Brian
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Offline denny

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Re: first helles help
« Reply #10 on: February 28, 2015, 06:29:09 PM »
Thanks everyone. I will probably throw some light Munich in. I already measure my hop in grams so I should be good there. Definitely will shoot for under 18 ibus. Yellow malty profile?

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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: first helles help
« Reply #11 on: February 28, 2015, 06:38:51 PM »
The first couple of Helles we brewed were knocked for being too bitter. The amount of IBUs targeted was only 20, and when I tasted it, yeah the Master level judge was right the bitterness was too high. Even for a 10 gallon batch it seems you are just waving some hops over the kettle for a Helles!

Jeff, as someone who's spent a lot of time in Germany, is there much variance in hop character in German Helles beers ?  I had only had dusty bottles of imports previously, where obviously any hop character had long since vanished. Until I went to the Hofbrauhaus in Newport, where there helles has a very slight but really nice hop flavor and aroma. Still definitely a malty beer, with just a hint of late hop character. It's a wonderful beer.
Jon H.

Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: first helles help
« Reply #12 on: February 28, 2015, 08:30:59 PM »
There is a hint of hop aroma in some, a little hop flavor in most, and the bitterness is to balance the malt in the finish.

Once at Augustiner Keller, the balance in the finish was perfect. I need to go back for recalibration.
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Offline gman23

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Re: first helles help
« Reply #13 on: March 18, 2015, 04:39:04 PM »
Okay so I think I have settled on this:

82.5% schill pilsner
11% schill munich light
5% weyermann acidulated malt
1.5% weyermann melanoidin

Shooting for mash pH of 5.2-5.3, yellow malty profile.

OG 1.047

Bitter to ~17 IBUs with noble hops (not sure which yet)

W34/70 yeast

Does that look about right?
« Last Edit: March 18, 2015, 04:46:15 PM by goschman »
On Tap/Bottled: Hopfenbier, Kurbis Marzen, Red Rye, Vienna Lager,      

Fermenting: Imperial Porter
Up Next: Maibock, Braunbier

Offline Pinski

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Re: first helles help
« Reply #14 on: March 18, 2015, 06:14:09 PM »
Okay so I think I have settled on this:

82.5% schill pilsner
11% schill munich light
5% weyermann acidulated malt
1.5% weyermann melanoidin

Shooting for mash pH of 5.2-5.3, yellow malty profile.

OG 1.047

Bitter to ~17 IBUs with noble hops (not sure which yet)

W34/70 yeast

Does that look about right?

As Jeff mentioned, I would aim a tad higher on mash pH, say 3.3-3.4 to accentuate  the malt more.
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