Author Topic: tweaking a hefe recipe  (Read 1039 times)

Offline morticaixavier

  • Official Poobah of No Life.
  • *
  • Posts: 7237
  • Davis, CA
    • View Profile
    • The Best Artist in the WORLD!!!!!
tweaking a hefe recipe
« on: September 23, 2011, 01:34:46 PM »
My wife and I brewed her first brew three weeks ago, a double decoction hefeweizen, and all went well on the brew day except that one of the hop bags got pinned to the bottom of the kettle for the last 15 minutes of the boild and burned up. So we have 5 gallons of a pretty good hefeweizen with an aftertaste somewhere between camp fire and ashtray. que sera. It's my first dumper.

Trying to salvage something from this experience we tasted, ignoring the nasty as best we could, and her critique is that she would like more flavour. Without being able to really finely analyze the beer cause it's too gross to have more than a couple of sips that is really the best we can do. so I figure I will try to bump up as much flavour as I can through yeast/ferm temp manipulations to start with and then, if still not right, start messing with the grain bill and hops.

the recipe was a simple one

60% weyermann malted wheat
40% weyermann pils

16 IBU of hallertaur at 60 minutes

111* acid rest
130* protein rest
144 beta
150 alpha (missed this temp a little should have been 155)
160 (missed this temp should have been 168) mashout

fermented cool (don't have a temp controller so just use a timer on the fridge and it hovered around 60 for the first three days then the weather cooled a little so dropped down to 54 for a week or so and finally down to 50 for the last day or two.

WLP380 in 1 qt starter

How do I do this?

I am thinking

1) make a slightly smaller starter, but I am hesitant to do this as I don't want a banana bomb
2) ferment a little warmer (leaning towards this)
3) just leave it alone and try to hit my temps better.

Thoughts?

Offline bluesman

  • Global Moderator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 8808
  • Delaware
    • View Profile
Re: tweaking a hefe recipe
« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2011, 01:42:04 PM »
I recommend making a 1 Liter starter using one vial or one smack pack. For fermentation, pitch at 60F, and let it rise to 62F for one day, then slowly increase the temp, one degree per day until you reach 68F and hold until finished.

I'm making a Hefe on Sunday. I'll post my recipe on the German Hefe thread.
Ron Price

Offline morticaixavier

  • Official Poobah of No Life.
  • *
  • Posts: 7237
  • Davis, CA
    • View Profile
    • The Best Artist in the WORLD!!!!!
Re: tweaking a hefe recipe
« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2011, 02:12:27 PM »
Thanks Ron,

I will take a look. I do wish I had that kind of temp control, I can do 55ish or 60ish so i will aim at 60ish to start and then cut back on cooling a little after the first day or two and let it rise gently. One of these days I will get an actuall controller but for now it always comes down to spend the money on the ingredients for a batch of beer or for a temp controller. Seems ingredients always win out. I'll smarten up eventually ::)

Offline snowtiger87

  • Brewer
  • ****
  • Posts: 415
    • View Profile
Re: tweaking a hefe recipe
« Reply #3 on: September 28, 2011, 11:13:11 AM »
What kind of "flavour" does you wife want more of?

Hops
Banana
Clove
Malt?

If you are focused on fermentation temp what you mentioned is way to low for a traditional Hefe. My general run is > 68 for more banana and < 68 for more clove, but never as low as 60 and definately not 50.
Brewing since 1989 - BJCP National Rank

Fermenting: McChouffe clone, Samiclaus clone
Conditioning: Belgian Tripel, Barrel Aged Baltic Porter - in sherry barrel, Belgain Easter Ale
On tap: CAP, Dortmunder Export, IIPA, Dubbel Chocolate Stout, Wee Heavy, Whiskey barrel aged Wee Heavy, Baltic Porter
Newly Bottled:

Offline morticaixavier

  • Official Poobah of No Life.
  • *
  • Posts: 7237
  • Davis, CA
    • View Profile
    • The Best Artist in the WORLD!!!!!
Re: tweaking a hefe recipe
« Reply #4 on: September 28, 2011, 11:19:18 AM »
What kind of "flavour" does you wife want more of?

Hops
Banana
Clove
Malt?

If you are focused on fermentation temp what you mentioned is way to low for a traditional Hefe. My general run is > 68 for more banana and < 68 for more clove, but never as low as 60 and definately not 50.

Yeah it got a little colder than I wanted. This is the draw back of the cheap timer as temp controller. I will be trying for a slightly higher ferm temp next time. I was aiming for more around 62 to start with a little rise towards the end.

The flavours we are looking to boost are the malt, cloves and banana but primarily the malt. Hops are fine.

The problem is that the burnt flavour is really distracting and so hard to pin down what exactly we are looking for. Gonna stick with the recipe as is for the next go, up the mash temp a bit, the ferm temp a bit and maybe make a slightly smaller starter.

Offline jmcamerlengo

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 625
    • View Profile
Re: tweaking a hefe recipe
« Reply #5 on: November 16, 2011, 10:29:07 AM »


From my experience you dont need a protein rest(just cuts on the mouthfeel that a hefe should have imo) or all of the different sach rests

Do an acid rest at 111
Then either raise the temp to 150 by adding boiling water, heating, or decocting.

If you decoct, make sure you let it rest around 157-160 for about 15-20 minutes. Then bring to boil and boil for as long as you want. The longer the boil the darker the hefe youre gonna end up with.

(personally I just heat my mash to 150)

for one vial of yeast youre going to want a 2L starter(if youre in the 1.050 OG range)

WLP380 works great. If you're up for an experiment(one that Ive had great success with) pitch one vial of WLP380 and one vial of WLP300.  Makes for a very complex interesting hefe!

I'd also recommend pitching at 56 and ramping up to 62 in first day.  Hold there until fermentation is complete.

62 produces a very balanced hefe with clove and a little banana.  If you get into the higher temps youre going to be looking at more of a banana bubblegum flavor.

Hope this helps, this is whats worked for my taste buds, experiment and see what you like!
Jason
-Head Brewer, Brewtus Brewers in the Shenango Valley. Hopefully opening a brewpub/nano brewery in the next couple years.

Offline morticaixavier

  • Official Poobah of No Life.
  • *
  • Posts: 7237
  • Davis, CA
    • View Profile
    • The Best Artist in the WORLD!!!!!
Re: tweaking a hefe recipe
« Reply #6 on: November 16, 2011, 11:23:00 AM »
The thinking behind the protein rest is thus;

I like to use organic ingredients exclusively but no organic rice hulls were available. The grist is very high in wheat and I did not want a stuck sparge thus...protein rest to help with runoff.

I will think about the two yeast strain idea. we are rebrewing on thanksgiving weekend so i will post with updates.