Would not a "Bitburger" be the Northern German Pils and Helles the southern pils?
A N. German Pilsner. Maybe on Monday. The 6L starter for 10.5 gallons is on the stir plate(s).
What are the differences between a Northern and Southern German pils? I'm curious because I'd really like to brew more German pils this year and am trying to learn more about the subtleties.
Just a speculation on my part.
That is what I think of for a German Pils - the ones from the North. If you look at the BJCP examples from Germany, the only one from the South is Spaten. Helles is sort of a "Mild" Pils in my way of thinking. The German beers in the South tend to be on the malty side and soft in the hop expresion. In the North the Hops take over. That is oposite of Britain. Hops are grown in in the South in both countries.
This is from the the German Beer Institute website. http://www.germanbeerinstitute.com/pils.html
"Characteristically, many Pils varieties made in northern Germany have a very strong, zesty, citrus-like, up-front hop-bitterness, in part because the water in northern Germany tends to be fairly hard. Hard water accentuates up-front hop-bitterness in the brewing process. In many parts of southern and southeastern Germany (as well as in the Czech Republic, incidentally) water tends to be moderately to extremely soft. Such water suppresses hop-bitternes. Because of Bavaria’s southern location, Bavarian Pils varieties tend to be more hop-aromatic than hop-pungent. They have a mellow hop-aroma instead of the more aggressive hop-bitterness found in some of the northern German Pils versions. "
I like to make something along the lines of Flensburger or Jever. If you haven't had those, think Prima Pils.