Author Topic: 'Black witbier'  (Read 2634 times)

Offline Hella Hazy

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'Black witbier'
« on: May 15, 2017, 12:54:26 AM »
Hi all,

I'm working on a concept beer - a 'black witbier.' The basic idea is to be a witbier but black in color (which I realize is an oxymoron), with minimal roast of course and with a heavy charge of anise to give it a strong black licorice impression in addition to coriander/orange peel. I've heard people say tangerines work particularly well for witbiers so my recipe in the making thus far is as follows:

40% pils
33% flaked wheat
10% midnight wheat (550 SRM)
8% flaked oats
8% Munich II
Mash @ 153F
21 IBUs hallertau @ 60min
0.5oz of Indian coriander, zest of 6 tangerines, and 1oz star anise (crushed) at T-5 minutes before end of boil.
Ferment with WLP410 Belgian Wit II at 68F

Note I am a man who LOVES black licorice so if 1oz of star anise sounds like way too much to you... I might be in the right ballpark for my tastes ;)

Any thoughts? Thanks!

Offline JJeffers09

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Re: 'Black witbier'
« Reply #1 on: May 15, 2017, 01:19:34 AM »
Coriander, orange, and star anise sounds like 1 to many spices.  Just my 2 cents

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Offline goschman

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Re: 'Black witbier'
« Reply #2 on: May 15, 2017, 01:48:19 AM »
I like the idea. 10% midnight wheat is way too much in my opinion. Not sure how the color works out but I would try to stay within 5%. I would shoot for 24 srm and call it good. You could always supplement with sinamar as well.

Not sure if there is any info on it but Stone did a black wit that I had on a few ocassions and enjoyed.
« Last Edit: May 15, 2017, 01:49:56 AM by goschman »
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Offline dmtaylor

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Re: 'Black witbier'
« Reply #3 on: May 15, 2017, 12:02:57 PM »
I love the concept.  Try Unibroue Trois Pistoles for something kind of similar.  Very good beer.

That is way too much tangerine and star anise though.  Cut back to just 1 or 2 tangerines, and 1 teaspoon of star anise.  Spicing is more about subtlety.  I think a teaspoon of star anise will still be in your face enough.  Could go maybe 1.5 teaspoons.

Also I fear too much midnight wheat, if that is possible.  I'd cut that back but not by so much that you would only have a brown beer.  Cutting back to 7% should still be black enough, especially if you offset by increasing the Munich to like 15-20% and cut back the pilsner to make up for the extra Munich.

That should do the trick.  Enjoy!
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Offline coolman26

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Re: 'Black witbier'
« Reply #4 on: May 15, 2017, 01:30:34 PM »
I love the concept.  Try Unibroue Trois Pistoles for something kind of similar.  Very good beer.

That is way too much tangerine and star anise though.  Cut back to just 1 or 2 tangerines, and 1 teaspoon of star anise.  Spicing is more about subtlety.  I think a teaspoon of star anise will still be in your face enough.  Could go maybe 1.5 teaspoons.

Also I fear too much midnight wheat, if that is possible.  I'd cut that back but not by so much that you would only have a brown beer.  Cutting back to 7% should still be black enough, especially if you offset by increasing the Munich to like 15-20% and cut back the pilsner to make up for the extra Munich.

That should do the trick.  Enjoy!
I agree with this. You could always cut the Midnight wheat and back it up with some Sinamar. You could get the color w/o making it too roasty. I do like the idea. I would start low with the spices and go up. Maybe try making a tea and tasting first. You may then be able to scale up.


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Offline Hella Hazy

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Re: 'Black witbier'
« Reply #5 on: May 15, 2017, 08:21:26 PM »
Thanks for the suggestions guys! I'll definitely cut back on the midnight wheat and tangerines, and ... consider starting the star anise lower.

I only hesitate on the anise because I find that what most people consider way too much licorice is just at the low end of the threshold for me, since I love the flavor and can't get enough of it.

Last time I used anise it was at an attempt to make a Pennsylvania swankey... and I used about 4.5g which I guess is about 0.15 oz. Couldn't taste it at all. I want to at least triple it... maybe 0.5oz is a good next point to try.

Offline dmtaylor

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Re: 'Black witbier'
« Reply #6 on: May 15, 2017, 09:19:01 PM »
Now you're talking.  :)
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Offline Steve Ruch

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Re: 'Black witbier'
« Reply #7 on: May 15, 2017, 10:12:08 PM »
The current issue of BYO has an article about brewing dark versions of pale color beers.
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Offline dbeechum

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Re: 'Black witbier'
« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2017, 05:26:09 PM »
Tbe Bruery in Placentia made a black wit for years - Black Orchard - They gave me a recipe a few years back for Zymurgy. https://www.homebrewersassociation.org/homebrew-recipe/the-bruerys-black-orchard-wit/
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Offline reverseapachemaster

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Re: 'Black witbier'
« Reply #9 on: May 19, 2017, 02:33:36 PM »
Last time I used anise it was at an attempt to make a Pennsylvania swankey... and I used about 4.5g which I guess is about 0.15 oz. Couldn't taste it at all. I want to at least triple it... maybe 0.5oz is a good next point to try.

Did you use star anise or anise seed for the swankey? Swankey was made with anise seed.
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Offline lowell.blikre

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Re: 'Black witbier'
« Reply #10 on: May 20, 2017, 12:35:10 PM »
A small % of Dinglemann debittered black malt would help you hit your color mark.

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Offline Hella Hazy

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Re: 'Black witbier'
« Reply #11 on: May 20, 2017, 09:59:31 PM »
Last time I used anise it was at an attempt to make a Pennsylvania swankey... and I used about 4.5g which I guess is about 0.15 oz. Couldn't taste it at all. I want to at least triple it... maybe 0.5oz is a good next point to try.

Did you use star anise or anise seed for the swankey? Swankey was made with anise seed.

Actually looking back on my notes in more detail I used both - 3.0g of anise seed and 1.5g of star anise.

Offline santoch

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Re: 'Black witbier'
« Reply #12 on: May 23, 2017, 04:05:14 AM »
I love this idea.  Please tell us how it turns out.
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Offline skyler

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Re: 'Black witbier'
« Reply #13 on: May 30, 2017, 04:25:58 AM »
I also like the idea, I would drop the munich and add the lion's share of the dark malt at sparge (and sparge a little cooler than usual <160F) like with a black IPA. I would also drop it to ~2 tangerines and maybe 3 star anise stars. You could also add brewers' licorice, if you wanted. FWIW, I like my witbiers around 1.048 and with ~15 IBUs.

Offline Hella Hazy

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Re: 'Black witbier'
« Reply #14 on: May 30, 2017, 05:54:26 PM »
I also like the idea, I would drop the munich and add the lion's share of the dark malt at sparge (and sparge a little cooler than usual <160F) like with a black IPA. I would also drop it to ~2 tangerines and maybe 3 star anise stars. You could also add brewers' licorice, if you wanted. FWIW, I like my witbiers around 1.048 and with ~15 IBUs.
Yeah def going to drop the # of tangerines. I was only thinking of adding Munich since it's a darker beer and may give that impression of cola that I sometimes get from Munich malt... thought it would compliment the licorice.