Author Topic: I want to brew an Altbier  (Read 2517 times)

Offline PORTERHAUS

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I want to brew an Altbier
« on: March 25, 2016, 02:37:08 PM »
Knowing nothing about the style or never having a true example of the style I do not really know where to begin. All I do know is this style sounds really good to me. I do not know for sure but sounds like Northern Alt is more popular and probably more to my liking by reading up on it.

My question is if I was to narrow it down, for those that are familar with both brewers and their recipes...who do you think has a better Alt recipe to brew?...Jamils from Brewing Classic Styles or Gordons Strongs from his new book? I figure either one is a good starting point. Im sure others have some input here as well.

Thanks, I am currently looking through the search as well and finding some good bits of info.

Offline goschman

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Re: I want to brew an Altbier
« Reply #1 on: March 25, 2016, 03:08:48 PM »
Like you mentioned, there seems to be a wide variety and interpretations for Altbier. I would maybe start simple with the recipe for Zum Uerige which seems to pretty popular around here. It has been posted a lot in other threads. I have yet to brew it but want to try it at some point. I think Ken brewed it recently so maybe he can chime in as well.
« Last Edit: March 25, 2016, 03:10:29 PM by goschman »
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Offline denny

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Re: I want to brew an Altbier
« Reply #2 on: March 25, 2016, 03:28:37 PM »
Knowing nothing about the style or never having a true example of the style I do not really know where to begin. All I do know is this style sounds really good to me. I do not know for sure but sounds like Northern Alt is more popular and probably more to my liking by reading up on it.

My question is if I was to narrow it down, for those that are familar with both brewers and their recipes...who do you think has a better Alt recipe to brew?...Jamils from Brewing Classic Styles or Gordons Strongs from his new book? I figure either one is a good starting point. Im sure others have some input here as well.

Thanks, I am currently looking through the search as well and finding some good bits of info.

Neither, IMO.  Search the forum for the Zum Uerige recipe I posted.
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Offline theDarkSide

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Re: I want to brew an Altbier
« Reply #3 on: March 25, 2016, 03:38:24 PM »
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Offline denny

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Re: I want to brew an Altbier
« Reply #4 on: March 25, 2016, 03:58:30 PM »
There's also the recipe for the Big Brew Day posted on the AHA site:

http://s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/homebrewassoc/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/07225133/Strike-Team-Chanukah-Altbier-%E2%80%93-All-Grain-.pdf

2 lb. of carapils and 1.3 lb. of crystal?  That's like 40% of the grist!
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Offline goschman

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Re: I want to brew an Altbier
« Reply #5 on: March 25, 2016, 04:08:55 PM »
On Tap/Bottled: Haze for Daze IPA, G Pils, Maibock, Kolsch, Summer Gold       

Fermenting: 
Up Next: Euro Pale, IPA

Offline denny

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Re: I want to brew an Altbier
« Reply #6 on: March 25, 2016, 04:15:25 PM »
There's also the recipe for the Big Brew Day posted on the AHA site:

http://s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/homebrewassoc/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/07225133/Strike-Team-Chanukah-Altbier-%E2%80%93-All-Grain-.pdf

2 lb. of carapils and 1.3 lb. of crystal?  That's like 40% of the grist!

and columbus hops?

Pretty wacky and certainly not what I wouid call an alt.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

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Offline theDarkSide

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Re: I want to brew an Altbier
« Reply #7 on: March 25, 2016, 04:15:41 PM »
There's also the recipe for the Big Brew Day posted on the AHA site:

http://s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/homebrewassoc/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/07225133/Strike-Team-Chanukah-Altbier-%E2%80%93-All-Grain-.pdf

2 lb. of carapils and 1.3 lb. of crystal?  That's like 40% of the grist!

and columbus hops?
Ha...never really looked at the recipe...just know it was the "official" one for BBD (along with a Ginger beer?).

I've made the Fish Brewing 8 mile Alt before, after the Brewing Network did the clone on Can You Brew It? and that one came out pretty good.
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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: I want to brew an Altbier
« Reply #8 on: March 25, 2016, 04:40:00 PM »
This is the recipe I use - it's pretty much the Zum Uerige recipe posted by Denny, scaled for % and IBU.

OG 1.050
FG 1.010
IBU 49.7
SRM 9.5

96.1% German Pils
 2.4%  Caramunich
 1.5% Roasted Barley

19.9 IBU Mittelfrueh - 60 mins
15.1 IBU Perle - 60 mins
14.7 IBU Spalt - 20 mins

WY1007 - hold @ 60F for 3 days, then ramp 2dF/ day up to 68F.

Mash 152F/75 mins @ 5.4 pH


Edit - forgot to mention lagering for 2 or 3 weeks. Luckily Jeff did.



« Last Edit: March 25, 2016, 04:58:23 PM by HoosierBrew »
Jon H.

Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: I want to brew an Altbier
« Reply #9 on: March 25, 2016, 04:42:55 PM »
Alta are easy drinkers, malt flavor is bready and shouldn't be caramelly, low to no hop aroma and flavor, bitter finish that makes you want more. Clean fermentation, low esters. German malts and hops are key to the style, along with a clean ale yeast that can work in the high 50s F. They should also be lagered for 3-4 weeks at 40F.

The Duesseldorf Alts are from smaller breweries, essentially brewpubs. Alts do not travel well, so few have had a good example. There are commercial examples that are distributed in Germany, such as Diebels and Frankenheimer, that are too caramelly for me.

I'm not sure of the notion that the Northern style is more popular.

In Duesseldorf, there are differences between the breweries Altbiers. Some have a Munich malt flavor in the background, some do not. They all have a firm bitter finish. Zum Uerige has an intensely bitter finish, and is my favorite. The Jamil and Gordon recipes might make something close to Schumacher or Diebels, but not like Uerige.

The Uerige recipe just posted is old, I have brewed it. Water treatment is something I am still working on. The bitterness is high, but does not linger long when you have it fresh at the pub.
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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: I want to brew an Altbier
« Reply #10 on: March 25, 2016, 04:52:04 PM »
Water treatment is something I am still working on. The bitterness is high, but does not linger long when you have it fresh at the pub.


Yeah, I used an amber bitter profile at first and eventually backed off on the sulfate a tad to soften the bitterness a little. Really good, simple recipe !
Jon H.

Offline PORTERHAUS

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Re: I want to brew an Altbier
« Reply #11 on: March 25, 2016, 07:18:49 PM »
Thanks guys...making an Alt sounds even better now. The recipe you mention Denny is that the all Munich and 10% Aromatic Malt?

Offline dmtaylor

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Re: I want to brew an Altbier
« Reply #12 on: March 25, 2016, 07:23:15 PM »
I've got a gold medal recipe I can look up later when I get home.  Wrote myself a note.
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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: I want to brew an Altbier
« Reply #13 on: March 25, 2016, 07:24:34 PM »
Thanks guys...making an Alt sounds even better now. The recipe you mention Denny is that the all Munich and 10% Aromatic Malt?


No, it's pretty much the one I posted.
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: I want to brew an Altbier
« Reply #14 on: March 25, 2016, 07:44:55 PM »
Thanks guys...making an Alt sounds even better now. The recipe you mention Denny is that the all Munich and 10% Aromatic Malt?
That was from someone that visited the Uerige and didn't understand the German brewmaster, it isn't close. The one Hoosier posted is from the current Brewer, and was published in the New Brewer magazine some years back.
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