Author Topic: Hefeweizen  (Read 2264 times)

Offline morticaixavier

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Hefeweizen
« on: July 03, 2011, 06:05:04 AM »
Looking for comments, suggestions on this hefe recipe. First a little background. My wife wants to brew a beer and this is the style she has chosen, I have never done a decoction and now is not the time to try it. We just tried three different hefes to get a feel for what we are looking to achieve. We sat down with a Blue Star from North Coast brewing, a Weihenstephaner to see if we wanted to use the WL300 or if it would be to bananaee. and the Ayinger as a comparison in the Bavarian realm. My opinions are what they are (the blue star was boring, as is most american wheat beer, the Weihenstephaner tasted a little like nail polish remover, the Ayinger was pretty good though) But it's my wife's opinion that matters this time around. She liked the Weihenstephaner but thought it was a little harsh and hot. She liked the Blue star but didn't think it was what she was after, she wanted more of the Bavarian character. So finally to my recipe... after this one question.

If I control the temp to 62ish on the WL300 but under pitch (2 vials to 11 gallons) will I be able to maintain the spicy clove character without the nail polish remover?

Okay here is the recipe

All malts are Weyermann organic,

10.5 Lbs Pale Wheat Malt (60%)
6.5 Lbs Pilsner (37.14%)
.5 Lbs Vienna (2.86%) (this is here because I am not going to do my first decoction as my wife's first brew so I am trying to simulate that result, I also have access to Munich and caramunich if one of those would be better)

1.25 oz Hallertauer at 60 Min.

Mash at 150 for 60 minutes, batch sparge.

A couple other questions

Would using some raw wheat gain me anything in this recipe? If so what? or rather what would adding some raw wheat do to the flavour of this beer?

I can not find organic rice hulls, I don't want a stuck sparge but I am also fairly adamant about using organic ingredients where ever possible. I am using a 72 qt coleman extreme (blue in case you are wondering) with braid the length of the cooler. am I going to struggle with stuck sparges with this much wheat if I don't use rice hulls?

My wife really liked the 'buttery' mouthfeel in the Blue Star, this got me thinking and I wonder if it would be crazy to add a little bit of oats to get something like that.

Thanks!
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Hefeweizen
« Reply #1 on: July 03, 2011, 08:25:07 AM »
I wouldn't use raw wheat or oats, I would leave it with what you've got.  I don't use rice hulls and don't have a problem, but you'll know your system better than I will, so you'll have to make that decision.  You can check with Seven Bridges and see if they might be able to track down some organic rice hulls for you.

Since you don't want to do a decoction, rather than a single infusion consider a step mash with infusions of boiling water.  I do a single decoction lately and use multiple steps with infusions, but you could skip the decoction and just add an infusion to make up for it.

I also don't under pitch, I use two smack packs of WY3068 in 5 gallons.  I'm happy with the flavor profile, but you can try under pitching and see if you like it.

If it's a beer your wife likes, you'll probably be making a lot of it. :) I'd do 5 gallons at a time while you work on the recipe, and maybe even after that - these beers are best fresh.

Let us know what you decide.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline Mark G

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Re: Hefeweizen
« Reply #2 on: July 03, 2011, 12:21:57 PM »
The recipe sounds pretty good. I use Munich and a bit of Caramunich instead of the Vienna, but that's just personal preference.

I also don't underpitch with this yeast, and start fermentation at 62F. I tried underpitching a couple times to see if I liked the flavor profile better, and I think it just becomes unpredictable (once got banana bread, and another time no banana).

I agree with Tom's recommendation to start with 5 gallon batches. This beer is best fresh. Plus, the shallower grain bed reduces your chance of a stuck sparge if you don't get the rice hulls. I have the same cooler with a braid, and haven't had problems with stuck sparges even without rice hulls though (I'm sure I just jinxed myself). Good luck!
Mark Gres

Offline majorvices

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Re: Hefeweizen
« Reply #3 on: July 03, 2011, 12:24:04 PM »
The "nail polish remover" taste may have been because the beer was old and not stored properly. hefeweizen does not travel or age well. I don't know what part of the country you are in but if you want a fanDAMNtastic version of a hefewezien try Troeg's Dreamweaver - it's spot on perfect.

I'd make a yeast starter if I were you. At least just get the yeast active and pitch the starter. I usually do a 1L well aerated active starter per 5 gallons.

Step mash is optional, but you may find a ferrulic acid rest at ~111 increases your clove character.

"Buttery mouthfeel" sounds like a defect to me. I'd stick with what you have. My preference is 60% wheat malt to 40% pils, maybe a lb or vienna or munich if I'm feeling edgy.

Good luck and have fun!

Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Hefeweizen
« Reply #4 on: July 03, 2011, 04:41:49 PM »
The "nail polish remover" taste may have been because the beer was old and not stored properly. hefeweizen does not travel or age well. I don't know what part of the country you are in but if you want a fanDAMNtastic version of a hefewezien try Troeg's Dreamweaver - it's spot on perfect.

I'd make a yeast starter if I were you. At least just get the yeast active and pitch the starter. I usually do a 1L well aerated active starter per 5 gallons.

Step mash is optional, but you may find a ferrulic acid rest at ~111 increases your clove character.

"Buttery mouthfeel" sounds like a defect to me. I'd stick with what you have. My preference is 60% wheat malt to 40% pils, maybe a lb or vienna or munich if I'm feeling edgy.

Good luck and have fun!

Sounds good Major. I think we might try Toms single decoction just for S's and G's It is possible the nail polish remover was due to improper handing, we are nearly 10k miles away from bavaria (I'm in northern california). I will look for Troeg's hefe, we are still a ways away but there is a good bottle shop in town and perhaps they have it, if not perhaps they will get it if requested.

In terms of the buttery mouthfeel, she described it as like a chardonnay. I did not pick up any myself but she is a super taster so who knows.
 I'm going to back down and to a 5.5 gallon batch at first and I will either pitch two tubes/smack packs or make a 1 liter starter. Don't want banana bread.

So if we mash in to hit 111 how long to hold it there? do we then decoct right up to 150?  or do we want to decoct up to 130 for protein rest and then infuse to 150?

Tom what is your single decoction schedule?
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Offline euge

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Re: Hefeweizen
« Reply #5 on: July 03, 2011, 05:43:23 PM »
I think decoctions are dead simple, but also I don't use them for step-mashes. It's always debatable that it does anything for the beer, but every time I've done a decoction the hefeweisse or weizen was excellent. So I think it's worth your while to do one. I do it on the stove.

I've also mashed up to 70% wheat-malt without rice-hulls and no stuck mashes. My opinion is that they are a waste of money.

If you got nail polish flavors the beer got too warm. Mishandling. I think the Ayinger is better than the Weihenstephaner hands down.
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Offline majorvices

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Re: Hefeweizen
« Reply #6 on: July 03, 2011, 08:31:54 PM »
If it were me I would dough in at ~111 for 20 minutes and then infuse up to 148-150, rest 20 minutes and pull the deocotion (resting the decoction for 15 min. @ 158) and boil the decoction for 30 min and dough back in aiming for ~165 or so. If you are set on doing a p-rest I'd do it at 130 simply to break down the beta glucans and make sparging easier.

Alternatively, since you are set to do a decocotion anyway, you may as well add 30 minutes to your brew day and pull 2. Dough in at 111 for 20 min., infuse to 144 and hold 15 min., pull decocotion and dough back in at 154-156, pull decoction and dough back in at around 165.

Or skip the decoction all together. I hate decocotions!  ;)

Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Hefeweizen
« Reply #7 on: July 04, 2011, 02:49:39 AM »
Tom what is your single decoction schedule?
Dough in at 112, hold for 15 minutes
Infuse to 131, hold for 10 minutes
Pull thick
Infuse main mash to 148, hold until decoction done
Heat decoction to 158, hold for 20 minutes, boil 10 minutes
Recombine to 158, hold for 10 minutes
Infuse to hit 170

There are a lot of options, Keith mentioned a few.  You can really do it most any way you like.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Hefeweizen
« Reply #8 on: July 07, 2011, 05:10:33 PM »
I have one more question on this recipe, It's no rush as it looks like I shant get a chance to brew until next month but...

I do not have a water filter so Iw ill be buying RO as my base water. What do I need to do to get the water right for this brew? I have time to order whatever chemicals I need to make this right.
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Offline blatz

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Re: Hefeweizen
« Reply #9 on: July 07, 2011, 05:15:03 PM »
I do not have a water filter so Iw ill be buying RO as my base water. What do I need to do to get the water right for this brew? I have time to order whatever chemicals I need to make this right.

download Martin Brungard's bru'nwater sheet (google it or look for Martin's profile - its in his signature) and start with that, then come back and ask questions when you get stuck - that way you'll start to learn how to build water profiles, rather than us just telling you - teach a man to fish sorta...

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Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Hefeweizen
« Reply #10 on: July 09, 2011, 03:52:35 AM »
Alright semi-final plan

Double decoction

5.5 gallon batch
5.25 lbs Wheat Malt (60%)
3.5 lbs Pils (40%)

.75 Oz hallertaur at 60 minutes

Start with RO water and adjust per Martin's Bru'n water with

.2 grams/gallon CaSO4
.25 grams/gallon CaCl2
.1 grams/gallon CaCO3 (added to mash?)
.06 grams/gallon Ca(OH)2 (Added to mash)
.2 grams/gallon MgCl2

Mass in with 1.25 qt/lbs to hit 111* hold for 15 min
infuse with 6.5 qt 207* water to hit 144* hold for 15 min
Pull first decoction, hold at 158* for 20 min Boil for 10 min
add back to hit 155* hold for 10 min
pull second decoction  boil and add back in to hit 165* hold for 20 min

How's that look?
"Creativity is the residue of wasted time"
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"errors are [...] the portals of discovery"
- J Joyce

Offline majorvices

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Re: Hefeweizen
« Reply #11 on: July 09, 2011, 01:58:38 PM »
Looks good!

Offline blatz

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Re: Hefeweizen
« Reply #12 on: July 09, 2011, 02:50:20 PM »
The happiest people don’t necessarily have the best of everything; they just make the best of everything they have.

BJCP National: F0281