As I partake of my most recent contribution to the world of brewing science, and blog in a state of mind that is probably illegal for driving, an idea has formulated in my mind that I desire to share and benefit from my compatriots vast knowledge and experience and grace of expression. Thank you.
This particular brew is a lager, in the Helles Bock realm, but not quite up to Bock strength, and hopped heavily in the finish.
Let me give you the details:
10 gallon batch (final kettle volume 11.5)
Grain: 21 lbs. Vienna 10, Pilsner 8, Munich 3
Hops: Tettnang 1.8 oz 60 min 10.3 IBU
Styrian Golding 2 oz. 60 min 17.5 IBU
Hallertaur 2 oz. 10 min 5.2 IBU
Saaz 2 oz. 10 min 4.6 IBU.
Total IBU 37.6, total IBU from finishing hops 9.8
Yeast: WLP833 German Bock Lager
O.G. 1.057, F.G. 1.011 ABV 6.0%
SRM the recipe calls it 5.1, but with decoctions it's probably about 6.5
The ABV is below Bock guidelines, and the total IBU is above guidelines, and notice the 4 ounces of noble hops in the last 10 minutes, they really show.
Now to my point. The hop flavor is very present, and yet Lager yeast tries to accentuate malt. Too hoppy for a German lager, and so at first I considered it another batch to explain away and learn from. But then I thought "What if this were an IPA?" Answer- I would call it pretty descent. It's that change of mindset that I'm trying to describe. If you are expecting a German beer, it misses the mark. But if you are expecting an IPA, it's quite good. On my garage chalkboard I've got "Marzen Hopfest" written as it's name. Do you see the psychology of it, trying to explain away the hop finish? But I think I'll rename it to something like "Bavarian IPL". But, you see, that is not a style. But this is my point, with an IPA mindset it compares favorably in my taste with a lot of commercial pale ales, and it doesn't take a lot of hops or dry-hopping to get there. The pre-conception of how a beer should taste, versus how it tastes. Certainly many of you have brewed lagers with bigger than prescribed hop finishes. And most certainly, experimentation is how styles are developed over time. Anyway, a thought for a Thursday evening, and I'm out of thoughts,