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Brewing German Beer Styles

Brewing German Beer Styles

A talk on brewing German beer styles, given by Graeme Coates at the June 2015 London Amateur Brewers meeting.

London Amateur Brewers

June 01, 2015
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  1. Graeme Coates
    1st June 2015
    www.uncraft.co.uk
    BREWING GERMAN
    BEER STYLES
    Experiences from West Oxfordshire…

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  2.  All personal experiences – research using
    commercial samples, style guidelines and
    printed/online resources.
     Started brewing against BJCP style guidelines to
    improve/experience new techniques.
     Many of these styles aren’t readily available locally
    to me!
     I’m not a biologist!
    BACKGROUND

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  3. German Lagers
    Weissbiers
    (Kölsch)
    COVERAGE

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  4. Quick polls:
    Do you like lager?
    Have you ever made lager?
    Define “lager”?
    LAGERS

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  5.  Lager-bier – a beer brewed for keeping
     Cold storage common in caves in medieval period.
     Hybridization resulted in “lager” yeasts in C15th –
    original source thought to be from hybridization of
    wild Patagonian yeast and S. cerevisiae (Libkind et
    al., 2011)
    LAGERN – “TO STORE”

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  6. LAGER YEAST
    "PBB Protein GLA image" by Original uploader was ProteinBoxBot at en.wikipedia - www.pdb.org
    - Transferred from en.wikipedia. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons -
    http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:PBB_Protein_GLA_image.jpg#/media/File:PBB_Protei
    n_GLA_image.jpg

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  7.  C. pastorianus/bayanus have ability to ferment
    Melibiose:
    LAGER YEAST

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  8.  Better at fermenting maltotriose than “ale” yeasts:
    LAGER YEAST

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  9. “Bottom” vs “Top” fermenting?
    Yeast ferments in the middle(!)
    Some ale yeasts top-crop and do not drop after
    ferment (and alternatively there is WLP002…)
    “Lager” strains will create significant krausen when
    used well!
    Generally (though not always) show higher
    attenuation than ales.
    CHARACTERISTICS

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  10.  Low temperature fermentation
     Lower ester production (cell membrane differences)
     Higher sulphide production
     Sulphur based metabolic pathways:
     DMSO -> DMS
     SO2
    production (reduces to H2
    S)
     Vigorous fermentation helps to flush sulphur
    compounds with CO2.
    GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS

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  11.  Basic methods are the same as for “normal” ales.
     Some more advanced techniques include:
     Stepped mashes
     Decoction
     Mash capping (for colour without harsh roast)
    MASHING

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  12.  Most important aim is to get the mash pH correct,
    while controlling salts (esp SO4
    2- vs Cl-)
     Control mash pH by controlling alkalinity (buffering
    capability of water)
     Common techniques:
     Acid addition (CRS/AMS, Lactic Acid)
     Acidulated malt (Sauermalz)
    WATER TREATMENT

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  13.  Witney water quality (source: Thames Water, 2013):
     Hardness ~ 250ppm as CaCO3
     Alkalinity* ~220ppm as CaCO3
     Sulphates ~ 85ppm
     Chlorides ~35ppm
    *- Measured myself using Methyl Orange
    WATER PROFILE

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  14.  I use either CRS/AMS or lactic acid.
     CRS: 1ml/l reduces alkalinity by ~180ppm
     Lactic (80%): 1ml/l reduces alkalinity by ~520ppm
     Add calcium in form of gypsum /CaCl2
    – former
    promotes bitterness, latter malt flavour. (~1.5-2
    tsp/5 Gallons)
    WATER TREATMENT

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  15.  Target alkalinity depends on beer being made.
     Lighter beer – 20-40ppm, darker – 60-100ppm.
     Higher alkalinity than for say, Czech pilsners.
    WATER TREATMENT

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  16.  “Sauermalz” (Acidulated/acid malt)
     Used for water corrections under Reinheitsgebot
    (malt is allowed – acids are not!)
     Simplify by using lactic acid directly… (non-RHG!) –
    lactic acid has taste threshold higher than should be
    required for correction.
    ACIDULATED MALT

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  17.  Traditional mashes would have used decoction
     Helps with under-modified malt
     Malt generally doesn’t require this these days
     Adds melanoidins from boiling malt
    ADVANCED MASH TECHNIQUES

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  18.  Can use Melanoidin Malt in place…
     Styles I have used decoction in:
     Munich Dunkel
     Trad Bock
     Weissbier
     Weizenbock
     Combine with step mash for ease of use if needed…
    TO DECOCT, OR NOT TO DECOCT…

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  19. SINGLE DECOCTION

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  20. ENHANCED DOUBLE DECOCTION

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  21.  Melanoidin like “Munich on Steroids”
     Decent replacement where decoction not
    possible/practical
     Subtly different (IMHO decoction better – boiling of
    husk benefits flavour over what melanoidin can
    offer).
    DECOCTION VS MELANOIDIN MALT?

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  22.  Decoction was used to raise mash temps
     Step mashing by adding boiling water/HERMS/RIMS
    avoids the difficulty of decocting
     Allows for good control over proteins/saccarification
    STEP MASHING

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  23. STEP MASHING
    Recommended for modern German malts. Source: Braukaiser

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  24. HOCHKURZ MASH

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  25.  50C-55C – Protein rest: lower = short chain amino
    acids, higher = medium chain (mouthfeel + head
    retention). Helps to improve clarity.
     61-63C – Maltose Rest (beta-amylase) – controls
    fermentability
     67-70C – Dextrinization Rest (alpha-amylase)
     75C – Mash out (mouthfeel?)
    REST TEMPERATURES

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  26. HOCHKURZ DOUBLE DECOCTION

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  27. Use good quality malt!
    Weyermann:
     Pils (several)
     Vienna
     Munich I/II
     Melanoidin
     Rauchmalz (Beech/Oak)
     Sauermalz
    Dingemans:
     Pilsner
    MALT

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  28.  Most malts are easy to mash and convert using
    standard infusion mashes.
     For high percentages of Munich Malt (eg Dunkel),
    consider enzymic activity in mash.
     TIP: Munich II doesn’t self-convert particularly well!
    (add ~15% Pils Malt, step mash).
    MALT CONSIDERATIONS

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  29.  Vigorous boil of 90min recommended for DMS
    reduction
     Cool as quickly as possible to stop formation of DMS
    from SMM
     Consider pre-chilling cooling water when cooling
    BOILING

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  30. Fermentation
    Fermentation
    And…
    Fermentation
    YEAST

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  31.  Primary Growth (“Lag”) phase
     Primarily centred around yeast growth
     Healthy yeast passes through this phase quickly
     Secondary fermentation phase
     Production of EtOH, esters, aldehydes, ketones, etc, etc!
    FERMENTATION

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  32.  8-12C is ideal during fermentation (lower for true
    German strains for cleaner results).
     Warm maturation towards end of fermentation
    (diacetyl reabsorption, full attenuation)
     Fermentation of up to 2 weeks typical (with few days
    cold crashing to drop yeast)
    FERMENTATION TEMPERATURES

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  33.  General rule: Double rate cf. ale yeast when cold
    pitching
     Cold pitching: ~8-14C.
     Pitch rates: 1.5M/ml/°P
     23L @ 1050 -> ~410 billion cells
     Good pitches ensure:
     Low ester/diacetyl/fusel production, proper attenuation.
     Low yeast stress
     Quick fermentation/short lag periods
    PITCHING RATES

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  34.  White Labs tubes contain approx. 100 billion cells
     Viability reduces over time!
     Strongly recommend a large starter
    I use (on a stir plate):
    1 tube in ~1L (starter at ~1040), then….
    Step up to 2L, then…
    Decant and step up to 3-4L
    PITCHING RATES

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  35.  Repitching yeast works well – subsequent
    fermentations much stronger
     Use calculators:
     Mr Malty
     Wyeast – good for stepping starters up
     Other brewing software
    PITCHING RATES

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  36.  Starters: aim to grow yeast
     Fermentation: aim to produce good flavour!
     I recommend crashing and decanting starters and
    pitching only the yeast
     Try to pitch cold (lower ester/fusel production)
     Aerate as well as you can – oxygen vital to yeast in
    primary phase of fermentation!
    YEAST PITCHING

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  37. Dry:
     W34/70 (“=” WLP830/Wy2124 (Weihenstephan))
     S-23
     Mauribrew 497
     S189 (“=”WLP885 (Samichlaus))
     Others (Brewferm, Youngs, etc….)
    STRAIN CHOICE

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  38. Liquid:
     Many more strains to choose from.
     Differences perhaps more subtle than ale yeasts, but results
    noticeable.
     WLP830 (Weihenstephan) widely used in commercial brewing
    STRAIN CHOICE

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  39.  WLP833 (Ayinger)
    Well balanced with excellent malt profile
    Great for Dunkel, Bock, Märzen, Helles
    Good sedimentation
     WLP810 (Anchor)
    Works very well at cold temps
    Versatile – and can use for Cal Common
    Less sensitive to higher fermentation temps
    YEAST STRAINS

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  40.  Remove as much yeast as possible before racking
    (crash cooling)
     Kegging – rack straight over and place in cold for
    maturation
     Bottling – prime and bottle, allow carbonation and
    then place in cold for maturation
    POST-FERMENTATION

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  41.  IMHO, needs at least 2 months
     Considerable changes in beer in that period
     Cold, long lagering better than warmer, shorter
    periods
     Have used up to 7 months at 2C with no problems.
    LAGERING PROCESS

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  42.  Jean De Clerke(1957):
     Allow yeast/turbid matter to settle
     Carbonation (artificial or yeast derived)
     Improve flavour (mellowing and ester formation)
     Precipitate chill haze
     Avoid oxygen pickup
    LAGERING

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  43. 90.1% Weyermann Pils Malt
    7.1% Weyermann Munich I
    2.8% Weyermann Melanoidin Malt
    60min: 1g/l Tettnang 2.3%AA, 1.87g/l Hallertau
    4.9%AA
    Yeast: White Labs WLP833
    OG: 1050
    FG: 1010
    IBU: 23 (calc. Tinseth)
    SCHNEEFLOCKE (MUNICH HELLES)

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  44. Weyermann Munich II 77.0%
    Dingemans Pils Malt 17.9%
    Melanoidin malt 2.6%
    Carafa Special II 2.5%
    75min: Perle, 0.96g/l, 8.5%AA;
    H. Mittelfrüh, 1.1g/l, 4.4%AA
    Yeast: White Labs 833
    OG: 1053
    FG: 1012
    IBU: 26 (calc. Tinseth)
    DMZ (MUNICH DUNKEL)

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  45. Weyermann Munich II 57.2%
    Weyermann Vienna 20.5%
    Weyermann Bohemian Pils Malt 17.4%
    Weyermann Caramunich II 3.3%
    Melanoidin malt 0.8%
    Carafa Special II 0.8%
    90min: Perle, 1.5g/l , 8.5%AA
    Yeast: White Labs 833
    OG: 1068
    FG: 1014
    IBU: 25 (calc. Tinseth)
    BOCKSE (TRAD. BOCK)

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  46. 39.8% Warminster Munich I malt
    39.8% Weyermann Vienna malt
    18.1% Weyermann Bohemian Pilsner malt
    2.4% Weyermann Caramunich
    90min: H Mittelfrüh, Saaz, Tettnang
    20min: 0.6g/l Tettnang
    OG 1055
    FG 1013
    25 IBU (Calc. Tinseth)
    Yeast: WLP810
    NOTFEST (OKTOBERFESTBIER)

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  47. 67.2% Pils malt
    24.6% Munich I malt
    7.4% Carafa Special II
    0.8% Pale Chocolate malt
    H Mittelfrüh 25IBU 90min
    H Mittelfrüh 0.65g/l 20min
    H Mittelfrüh 0.7g/l 0min
    OG: 1051
    FG: 1012
    IBU: 28 (calc. Tinseth)
    Yeast: WLP810, 3L starter (in 23L)
    CAUCHY-SCHWARZ INEQUALITY
    (SCHWARZBIER)

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  48.  German law states must be >50% malted wheat
     Characteristic yeast character:
     Yeast has POF+ gene
     Produces 4-vinyl-guaiacol:
     Often accompanied by banana esters (isoamyl acetate):
    WEISS!

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  49.  Single infusions work fine
     Consider a short rest at about 45C for production of
    ferulic acid (converted to 4-VG by yeast).
     Decoction adds malt complexity – I recommend short
    decoction for many of the lighter styles (complexity
    without adding too much colour)
    MASHING CONSIDERATIONS

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  50.  Yeast choice is v. important – liquid yeasts probably
    essential
     Balance between clove and banana key to many of
    these styles
     Higher alcohols, sulphur, strawberry/bubblegum
    should be avoided!
    FERMENTATION

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  51.  Control fermentation temperatures.
     Use correct pitch rates (underpitching not
    recommended)
     Fermentation is often vigorous!!!
    FERMENTATION

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  52. There should be virtually no detectable
    bitterness in all classic German wheat
    beers!!!
     Low rates of noble type hops only.
    HOPPING

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  53.  WLP300/Wy3068 classic Weiss yeast
    (Weihenstephan 68)
    Ferment starting at ~15C and allow to rise to 17C
     Other yeasts may be preferred:
    WLP380 – Less banana, more clove
    WLP351 – High phenolics/cloves, low esters
    Wy3333 – Good for Krystalweiss
    YEAST SELECTION

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  54. 60% Wheat Malt
    40% Pilsner Malt
    H. Mittelfrüh 13IBU 60min
    Yeast: WLP300
    OG: 1049
    FG: 1009
    IBU: 13 (calc. Tinseth)
    TRITICUM (HEFEWEISSBIER)

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  55. 55% Weyermann Dark Wheat malt
    25.1% Weyermann Bohemian Pilsner malt
    14.1% Weyermann Munich I malt
    2.5% Special B
    2.2% Pale Crystal malt
    1.1% Pale Chocolate malt
    H. Mittelfrüh, 25IBU, 1h45m
    Yeast: WLP300 (2L active starter)
    OG: 1080
    FG: 1017
    IBU: 25 (calc. Tinseth)
    VITAL SIGNS (WEIZENBOCK)

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  56.  Principles of Brewing Science (Fix)
     Yeast (White, Zainasheff)
     German Beer Institute website
    (http://www.germanbeerinstitute.com/)
     Braukaiser (http://braukaiser.com/)
     Brewing with Wheat (Heironymus)
    RESOURCES

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