Author Topic: Altbier recipe  (Read 1034 times)

Offline charles1968

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Altbier recipe
« on: November 02, 2016, 02:03:20 PM »
I'm going to brew an altbier this weekend, my first one. I've already got a WLP036 Dusseldorft Alt yeast starter going and it smells fantastic, which has got me excited about how the beer will turn out. Any tips on recipes would be much appreciated. Below is my malt inventory, NOT my recipe, which is yet to be designed. I'm hoping I can make it without having to order anything else, which would hold up my brew day.

One big question - should I use melanoidin malt or aromatic malt, as in Brewing Classic Styles recipes?
And any successful recipes would be great.

German pilsner malt
Kolsch malt
Munich (but only 0.5 kg left)
Caramunich
Various other crystal malts
Aromatic malt
Melanoidin malt
Chocolate malt
Carafa special 3

Hops: suitable ones I have are Hallertauer hersbrucker, Magnum, Saaz, maybe Northern Brewer for bittering.

any tips on water & fermentation temp also appreciated.

Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Altbier recipe
« Reply #1 on: November 02, 2016, 02:30:06 PM »
A couple months ago we were in Düsseldorf, and drank Schumacher, Schlüssel, and Zum Uerige Alts. Those all have differences, is one of those a favorite?

If you search the forum for the Uerige recipe, you will find the recipe posted by Denny. That was from the head brewer, and it gets close to Uerige.

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Offline joelv

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Re: Altbier recipe
« Reply #2 on: November 02, 2016, 03:35:53 PM »
I'm going to brew an altbier this weekend, my first one. I've already got a WLP036 Dusseldorft Alt yeast starter going and it smells fantastic, which has got me excited about how the beer will turn out. Any tips on recipes would be much appreciated. Below is my malt inventory, NOT my recipe, which is yet to be designed. I'm hoping I can make it without having to order anything else, which would hold up my brew day.

One big question - should I use melanoidin malt or aromatic malt, as in Brewing Classic Styles recipes?
And any successful recipes would be great.

German pilsner malt
Kolsch malt
Munich (but only 0.5 kg left)
Caramunich
Various other crystal malts
Aromatic malt
Melanoidin malt
Chocolate malt
Carafa special 3

Hops: suitable ones I have are Hallertauer hersbrucker, Magnum, Saaz, maybe Northern Brewer for bittering.

any tips on water & fermentation temp also appreciated.

My alt recipe and my reaction below.
5 gallons
Altbier
All Grain (5.50 gal) ABV: 5.42 %
OG: 1.057 SG FG: 1.016 SG
IBUs: 35.8 IBUs Color: 14.0 SRM

RO water
4g Calcium Chloride
2g Gypsum
2g Epsom Salt
3 ml lactic acid

8 lbs Pilsner
2 lbs Munich (9L)
8 oz Caramunich III
8 oz Aromatic
3 oz Carafa II Dehusked
1 oz Northern Brewer 60min
1 oz Hallertau 10min
Wyeast 1007

Mash 154

I've only brewed one Alt and am not well versed in commercial versions.

In regards to style, it is to big in gravity and on the lower end of the bitterness rating.

If brewing it again, I would shoot for a bit higher srm. It is lighter then I was hoping for. The balance, to me seems midway between bitter and malty (when it was young the malt flavors were really apparent - like chewing on Munich malt).

Wyeast 1007 tastes fairly crisp and dry to me - and I think the mouthfeel on this recipe comes back a little too dry. With as much specialty malt as is in here, I don't think I'd change that. I might swap some Pilsner for more Munich or Vienna if I was to do it again.


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Offline charles1968

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Re: Altbier recipe
« Reply #3 on: November 02, 2016, 05:57:51 PM »
A couple months ago we were in Düsseldorf, and drank Schumacher, Schlüssel, and Zum Uerige Alts. Those all have differences, is one of those a favorite?

If you search the forum for the Uerige recipe, you will find the recipe posted by Denny. That was from the head brewer, and it gets close to Uerige.

Thanks, I'll look it up. I have no particular favourite - just want it to have an assertively malty flavour and some colour. Did you have a preference for any of the alts you tried?

Offline charles1968

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Re: Altbier recipe
« Reply #4 on: November 02, 2016, 06:00:49 PM »
My alt recipe and my reaction below.
5 gallons
Altbier
All Grain (5.50 gal) ABV: 5.42 %
OG: 1.057 SG FG: 1.016 SG
IBUs: 35.8 IBUs Color: 14.0 SRM

RO water
4g Calcium Chloride
2g Gypsum
2g Epsom Salt
3 ml lactic acid

8 lbs Pilsner
2 lbs Munich (9L)
8 oz Caramunich III
8 oz Aromatic
3 oz Carafa II Dehusked
1 oz Northern Brewer 60min
1 oz Hallertau 10min
Wyeast 1007

Mash 154

I've only brewed one Alt and am not well versed in commercial versions.

In regards to style, it is to big in gravity and on the lower end of the bitterness rating.

If brewing it again, I would shoot for a bit higher srm. It is lighter then I was hoping for. The balance, to me seems midway between bitter and malty (when it was young the malt flavors were really apparent - like chewing on Munich malt).

Wyeast 1007 tastes fairly crisp and dry to me - and I think the mouthfeel on this recipe comes back a little too dry. With as much specialty malt as is in here, I don't think I'd change that. I might swap some Pilsner for more Munich or Vienna if I was to do it again.


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Thanks, that's very close to my inventory. I'm aiming for 4.5-5% abv. Crisp and dry is OK with me. I'd prefer it to be more lagerlike than ale-like.

Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Altbier recipe
« Reply #5 on: November 02, 2016, 07:00:00 PM »
A couple months ago we were in Düsseldorf, and drank Schumacher, Schlüssel, and Zum Uerige Alts. Those all have differences, is one of those a favorite?

If you search the forum for the Uerige recipe, you will find the recipe posted by Denny. That was from the head brewer, and it gets close to Uerige.

Thanks, I'll look it up. I have no particular favourite - just want it to have an assertively malty flavour and some colour. Did you have a preference for any of the alts you tried?
Zum Uerige is my favorite, but it is very bitter, and not as malty as one often thinks Altbiers are.

Jamil's recipe has more malt character, he was going For Schlüssel IIRC. You will want Munich malt in there, maybe 2 or 3 lbs for 5 gallons, a half pound is not enough.
« Last Edit: November 02, 2016, 07:12:50 PM by hopfenundmalz »
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Offline Phil_M

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Re: Altbier recipe
« Reply #6 on: November 02, 2016, 07:06:00 PM »
Zum Uerige is my favorite, but it is very bitte, and not as malty as one often thinks Altbiers are.

So who else besides me read that as "please" not "bitter".  :P
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Altbier recipe
« Reply #7 on: November 02, 2016, 07:12:17 PM »
Zum Uerige is my favorite, but it is very bitte, and not as malty as one often thinks Altbiers are.

So who else besides me read that as "please" not "bitter".  :P
Good catch, poor typing, though the Köbe will set a beer down without being asked please.
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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Altbier recipe
« Reply #8 on: November 02, 2016, 07:17:23 PM »
Here's the last one I did. I took the recipe Denny posted from the Uerige brewer (which was given in amounts, not %) and scaled it for % in software. Makes a pretty nice beer. Simple and good.



OG 1.050
IBU 49.7

96.1% Pils
2.4% Caramunich
1.5% Carafa III

19.9 IBU HM - 60 min
15.1 IBU Perle - 60 min
14.7 IU Spalt - 20 min

WY1007 -  hold @ 60F for 3 days, slowly ramp to 68F

Mash 150/ 75 mins

Amber Bitter water profile/ 5.4 mash pH
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Offline charles1968

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Re: Altbier recipe
« Reply #9 on: November 02, 2016, 07:26:15 PM »
Zum Uerige is my favorite, but it is very bitter, and not as malty as one often thinks Altbiers are.

Jamil's recipe has more malt character, he was going For Schlüssel IIRC. You will want Munich malt in there, maybe 2 or 3 lbs for 5 gallons, a half pound is not enough.

Jamil has 8% Munich in his north German Alt and 14% in the Dusseldorf Alt. I can match that. He also uses 11% aromatic malt in the Dusseldorf recipe, which would make it a bit of a malt bomb. I wonder how that would turn out.

Offline charles1968

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Re: Altbier recipe
« Reply #10 on: November 02, 2016, 07:29:32 PM »
Here's the last one I did. I took the recipe Denny posted from the Uerige brewer (which was given in amounts, not %) and scaled it for % in software. Makes a pretty nice beer. Simple and good.



OG 1.050
IBU 49.7

96.1% Pils
2.4% Caramunich
1.5% Carafa III

19.9 IBU HM - 60 min
15.1 IBU Perle - 60 min
14.7 IU Spalt - 20 min

WY1007 -  hold @ 60F for 3 days, slowly ramp to 68F

Mash 150/ 75 mins

Amber Bitter water profile/ 5.4 mash pH

That looks good. 50IBU slightly on the high side for me but I like the simplicity of it.

Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Altbier recipe
« Reply #11 on: November 02, 2016, 07:31:43 PM »
Here's the last one I did. I took the recipe Denny posted from the Uerige brewer (which was given in amounts, not %) and scaled it for % in software. Makes a pretty nice beer. Simple and good.



OG 1.050
IBU 49.7

96.1% Pils
2.4% Caramunich
1.5% Carafa III

19.9 IBU HM - 60 min
15.1 IBU Perle - 60 min
14.7 IU Spalt - 20 min

WY1007 -  hold @ 60F for 3 days, slowly ramp to 68F

Mash 150/ 75 mins

Amber Bitter water profile/ 5.4 mash pH

That looks good. 50IBU slightly on the high side for me but I like the simplicity of it.


It is high, but Uerige is an outlier among most alts in its bitterness. I guess it depends on what style of alt you're after. It's a tasty one, though.
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Altbier recipe
« Reply #12 on: November 02, 2016, 09:16:20 PM »
Zum Uerige is my favorite, but it is very bitter, and not as malty as one often thinks Altbiers are.

Jamil's recipe has more malt character, he was going For Schlüssel IIRC. You will want Munich malt in there, maybe 2 or 3 lbs for 5 gallons, a half pound is not enough.

Jamil has 8% Munich in his north German Alt and 14% in the Dusseldorf Alt. I can match that. He also uses 11% aromatic malt in the Dusseldorf recipe, which would make it a bit of a malt bomb. I wonder how that would turn out.

Oh, I see 0.5 kg in stock, not 0.5 Lb.

Some of the Düsseldorf Alts are more malty than others, and the more malty ones are balanced with a healthy does of bittering hops. I found the Northern Alts to be too sweet for me, Diebels comes to mind.
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BJCP National
Home-brewing, not just a hobby, it is a lifestyle!

Offline charles1968

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Re: Altbier recipe
« Reply #13 on: November 02, 2016, 10:45:16 PM »
I definitely don't want something sweet and cloying. I'd rather err on the side of bitterness. I might give the uerige recipe a go or a variation of it with a bit of aromatic malt.

Offline brewinhard

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Re: Altbier recipe
« Reply #14 on: November 02, 2016, 11:21:16 PM »
I definitely don't want something sweet and cloying. I'd rather err on the side of bitterness. I might give the uerige recipe a go or a variation of it with a bit of aromatic malt.

That sounds good, plus you'll get a bit more body to it.