Schwarzbier, German for black beer, is described by Mosher as an “eccentric beer that slips outside the carefully constructed framework of allowable brews” in Germany. The style can be likened to a hybrid of a German porter, a style once popular in continental Europe, and pilsner, the style the dethroned porter. Despite their name, schwarzbiers are typically red or amber in color, with well-balanced profile of malt, roast, and hops. Subtlety of flavors is key to this style, not allowing one characteristic to dominate over the rest.
Doktor Schnurrbart Schwarzbier | Schwarzbier
- 6.5 lb (2.9 kg) | amber malt extract
- 1.5 lb (0.68 kg) | dark crystal malt, crushed
- 6.0 oz (170 g) | black patent malt
- 2.0 oz (56 g) | Spalt hops, 4% alpha acid (90 minutes)
- Bavarian lager yeast
- Original Gravity: 1.061 (14.5 °P)
- ABV: 4.1-4.9%
- IBU: ~26
- SRM: Ruby-brown
- Boil Time: 90 minutes
Specific step-by-step directions are not provided with this recipe, but the same general steps highlighted in Brewing with Specialty Grains can be used.
Steep the grains in 1-3 gallons of 150°-170°F (65.6°-76.7°C) water for 30 minutes and remove. Stir in half of the malt extract until fully dissolved and bring to boil. When the boil starts, add the 90 minutes hops.
After a 90 minute boil time, remove heat and add the remaining malt extract. Allow to sit for up to 10 minutes to pasteurize.
If possible, chill the hot wort below 80°F (26.7°C) before transferring to the fermenter with the cold water. If not, simply transfer the hot wort into the fermenter with cold water and allow to cool (note: DO NOT transfer hot wort into glass carboys).
Once the wort is near or below 60°F (15.6°C), pitch yeast. Lager fermentation requires the wort to be held around 50°F (10°C) while in primary. After fermentation, the beer is transferred to a secondary vessel where it will be held around 35°-40°F (1.7°-4.4°C), and eventually brought up to around 60°-65°F (15.6°-18.3°C) late in the lagering stage. It is recommended to cold lager for six weeks before increasing the temperature into the 60’s°F in the last few days.