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foxbat

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On another note I took an early drive to Tesco this morning to get the Ashbeck needed for the brew. Still no 6x2l packs available and now no 5l bottles either. I had to get 16x 2l bottles which was fun at the self checkout.
 

foxbat

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Todays brew is my first attempt at a Munich Dunkel and so I needed a recipe to follow. I remember quite clearly what a draft Dunkel tastes like when served in Munich so I had a good look around the internet and was not terribly impressed with what I found on the US forums. Their recipes tended to be either:
  • Munich plus vienna or pilsner with a bit of carafa for colour. Without the carafa that would be a good Marzen malt bill.
  • All munich with 2-3% caramunich and again carafa for colour. That's pretty much an English bitter malt bill with German malts and will lack the body and feel of the Dunkels that I recall drinking in the beer halls.
My impression of a Dunkel is that it's like an English mild brewed to lager strength and with a lager yeast. There is a significant caramel backbone to it that the US recipes don't seem to capture. The US brewers seem to be scared of caramel malts; have they ever seen an English mild recipe where 5-15% crystal malt is the norm?

Finally I found a recipe that looks like it fits the bill and it's on the Weyermann website hidden away under their FAQ. If anyone ought to know how to brew an authentic Dunkel then it's Weyermann. Here's the recipe.

Code:
Recipe: Weyermann's Dunkel
Style: Munich Dunkel

Recipe Specifications
--------------------------
Batch Size (fermenter): 24.00 L 
Estimated OG: 1.044 SG
Estimated Color: 33.8 EBC
Estimated IBU: 24.7 IBUs
Brewhouse Efficiency: 75.00 %
Est Mash Efficiency: 75.6 %
Boil Time: 60 Minutes
Water profile: Ca:29 Mg:4 Na:10 SO4:11 Cl:46

Ingredients:
------------
Amt         Name                                             Type         %/IBU
29.66 L     Tesco Ashbeck                                    Water        -       
1.70 ml     Lactic Acid (Mash)                               Water Agent  80%      
1.20 g      Calcium Chloride (Mash)                          Water Agent  -       
0.30 g      Calcium Chloride (Sparge)                        Water Agent  -       
0.20 ml     Lactic Acid (Sparge)                             Water Agent  80%     

2.80 kg     Weyermann Munich II (22.5 EBC)                   Grain        60.0 %
1.40 kg     Weyermann Vienna Malt (5.9 EBC)                  Grain        30.0 %
0.40 kg     Weyermann Caramunich II (124.1 EBC)              Grain        8.5 % 
0.07 kg     Weyermann Carafa II (1150.0 EBC)                 Grain        1.5 % 

18.00 g     Magnum [10.70 %] - Boil 60.0 min                 Hop          22.1 IBUs
20.00 g     Hallertauer Hersbrucker [3.20 %] - Boil 10.0 min Hop          2.7 IBUs

1.00 Items  Whirlfloc Tablet (Boil 7.0 mins)                 Fining       -       
1.0 pkg     Munich Lager II (Wyeast Labs #2352-PC)           Yeast        -       

Mash Schedule: Single Infusion, Full Body
Total Grain Weight: 4.66 kg
----------------------------
Name              Description                             Step Temperat Step Time    
Mash In           Add 24.67 L of water at 72.1 C          66.0 C        60 min       

Sparge: Dunk sparge with 5L
And so on to brew day, I was up early to grind my grains while the water heated up.



I mashed in at the correct strike temperature but the initial mash temperature settled at 68C, a little higher than I wanted so I stirred vigourously for a couple of minutes until it dropped a degree to 67 then left it for the hour.

I wasn't sure what extraction I'd get from this grain bill because the bulk of it is Munich II and Vienna, neither of which I'd used before and unfamiliar grains often mean a change in mash efficiency. I was pleased to the see the numbers were exactly what I get with a 100% pilsner malt bill with the pre-boil gravity coming out as planned at 1.040.

Nothing exciting to report about the rest of the session and all pre and post boil gravity and volume numbers were hit.



The ground water is still cold here so I got it down to 20.5C with the immersion chiller and 65 litres of tap water which was then used for cleaning before being dumped into our garden water butt. Only the 4 litres used for the PBW wash goes down the drain. Just over 24 litres of wort was collected into the fermenter.



OG was 1.044 as planned which I estimate will finish at 1.006 for an ABV of 5.0%. It's in the brew-fridge at the moment coming down to the planned pitching temperature of 13.5C for the Wyeast 2352-PC starter.
 

matt76

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Nice one @foxbat ๐Ÿ‘ I made a Dunkel last year using Josh Weikert's "Make your best..." recipe consisting of Munich, Victory and Carafa II.

It was ok but to be honest was a bit "meh", which kind of fits with what you're saying about US recipes. I like your analogy to mild, and I'm inclined to agree with you that if anyone knows how it should be done then it's Weyermann ๐Ÿ‘

(I listened recently to a whole Brulosophy podcast about making Dunkels but it didn't really inspire me!)

I'm not in any rush at all to make a lager again at the moment but I'd like to give Munich Dunkel another whirl at some point so will have to check out this recipe if it works out for you. (I believe there's also a recipe in GH but can't comment any further than that!)

a little higher than I wanted so I stirred vigourously for a couple of minutes until it dropped a degree to 67 then left it for the hour.
Hey, quick question while I've got you - I can't remember what kind of system you use (3 vessel? All in one BIAB?). So you use a recirculation pump in the mash? This is something I've recently started tinkering with and I wondered if that's a factor in the very clear wort you always seem to get?
 

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That look a cracking brew, so clear already. Where did you get the glass sample tube btw, I'm fed up with my semi transparent plastic thing.
 

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Todays brew is my first attempt at a Munich Dunkel and so I needed a recipe to follow. I remember quite clearly what a draft Dunkel tastes like when served in Munich so I had a good look around the internet and was not terribly impressed with what I found on the US forums. Their recipes tended to be either:
  • Munich plus vienna or pilsner with a bit of carafa for colour. Without the carafa that would be a good Marzen malt bill.
  • All munich with 2-3% caramunich and again carafa for colour. That's pretty much an English bitter malt bill with German malts and will lack the body and feel of the Dunkels that I recall drinking in the beer halls.
My impression of a Dunkel is that it's like an English mild brewed to lager strength and with a lager yeast. There is a significant caramel backbone to it that the US recipes don't seem to capture. The US brewers seem to be scared of caramel malts; have they ever seen an English mild recipe where 5-15% crystal malt is the norm?

Finally I found a recipe that looks like it fits the bill and it's on the Weyermann website hidden away under their FAQ. If anyone ought to know how to brew an authentic Dunkel then it's Weyermann. Here's the recipe.

Code:
Recipe: Weyermann's Dunkel
Style: Munich Dunkel

Recipe Specifications
--------------------------
Batch Size (fermenter): 24.00 L
Estimated OG: 1.044 SG
Estimated Color: 33.8 EBC
Estimated IBU: 24.7 IBUs
Brewhouse Efficiency: 75.00 %
Est Mash Efficiency: 75.6 %
Boil Time: 60 Minutes
Water profile: Ca:29 Mg:4 Na:10 SO4:11 Cl:46

Ingredients:
------------
Amt         Name                                             Type         %/IBU
29.66 L     Tesco Ashbeck                                    Water        -      
1.70 ml     Lactic Acid (Mash)                               Water Agent  80%     
1.20 g      Calcium Chloride (Mash)                          Water Agent  -      
0.30 g      Calcium Chloride (Sparge)                        Water Agent  -      
0.20 ml     Lactic Acid (Sparge)                             Water Agent  80%    

2.80 kg     Weyermann Munich II (22.5 EBC)                   Grain        60.0 %
1.40 kg     Weyermann Vienna Malt (5.9 EBC)                  Grain        30.0 %
0.40 kg     Weyermann Caramunich II (124.1 EBC)              Grain        8.5 %
0.07 kg     Weyermann Carafa II (1150.0 EBC)                 Grain        1.5 %

18.00 g     Magnum [10.70 %] - Boil 60.0 min                 Hop          22.1 IBUs
20.00 g     Hallertauer Hersbrucker [3.20 %] - Boil 10.0 min Hop          2.7 IBUs

1.00 Items  Whirlfloc Tablet (Boil 7.0 mins)                 Fining       -      
1.0 pkg     Munich Lager II (Wyeast Labs #2352-PC)           Yeast        -      

Mash Schedule: Single Infusion, Full Body
Total Grain Weight: 4.66 kg
----------------------------
Name              Description                             Step Temperat Step Time   
Mash In           Add 24.67 L of water at 72.1 C          66.0 C        60 min      

Sparge: Dunk sparge with 5L
And so on to brew day, I was up early to grind my grains while the water heated up.



I mashed in at the correct strike temperature but the initial mash temperature settled at 68C, a little higher than I wanted so I stirred vigourously for a couple of minutes until it dropped a degree to 67 then left it for the hour.

I wasn't sure what extraction I'd get from this grain bill because the bulk of it is Munich II and Vienna, neither of which I'd used before and unfamiliar grains often mean a change in mash efficiency. I was pleased to the see the numbers were exactly what I get with a 100% pilsner malt bill with the pre-boil gravity coming out as planned at 1.040.

Nothing exciting to report about the rest of the session and all pre and post boil gravity and volume numbers were hit.



The ground water is still cold here so I got it down to 20.5C with the immersion chiller and 65 litres of tap water which was then used for cleaning before being dumped into our garden water butt. Only the 4 litres used for the PBW wash goes down the drain. Just over 24 litres of wort was collected into the fermenter.



OG was 1.044 as planned which I estimate will finish at 1.006 for an ABV of 5.0%. It's in the brew-fridge at the moment coming down to the planned pitching temperature of 13.5C for the Wyeast 2352-PC starter.
I might give this a try. I have some wyeast 2278in the fridge. I brewed a doppelbock with it already ๐Ÿ‘
 

foxbat

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Hey, quick question while I've got you - I can't remember what kind of system you use (3 vessel? All in one BIAB?). So you use a recirculation pump in the mash? This is something I've recently started tinkering with and I wondered if that's a factor in the very clear wort you always seem to get?
BIAB for me without any kind of pump. My kettle is a converted thermopot with nothing more than a 2.4kW kettle element and an outlet valve in it. I sparge the bag by lifting out into a separate stockpot for 10 minutes of poking and prodding in 5 litres of water. I squeeze the bag very hard and my wort is very cloudy right up until I drop the whirlfloc in at 7 minutes. That stuff is amazing in the way it pulls all the bits together and dumps them on the bottom.

That look a cracking brew, so clear already. Where did you get the glass sample tube btw, I'm fed up with my semi transparent plastic thing.
It's this one from The Malt Miller. I needed a slightly larger jar because my hydrometers are quite wide and touch the sides of a 'normal' trial jar. If you have a normal triple-scale hydrometer then you might find this jar takes up more wort than you'd care to lose. You can always tip the wort back in of course but that comes with a risk, especially later on.

I too am impressed by foxbat's gleaming, clear worts!
As mentioned above it's the whirlfloc that does the magic. There's a good 10mm of trub on the bottom of the sample jar that you can't see in that photograph that settled there within minutes. I tip all the wort, kettle trub and all into the fermenter and what the yeast doesn't want ends up in a nice fat pancake on the bottom that's easy to transfer the beer off.

I might give this a try. I have some wyeast 2278in the fridge. I brewed a doppelbock with it already ๐Ÿ‘
I used 2278 in a Czech Pils last year. Supposedly one of the Urquell strains. Very nice, clean and crisp, I'd use it again. If you do brew this recipe and it's no good then I'm blaming Weyermann! :laugh8:
 

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BIAB for me without any kind of pump. My kettle is a converted thermopot with nothing more than a 2.4kW kettle element and an outlet valve in it. I sparge the bag by lifting out into a separate stockpot for 10 minutes of poking and prodding in 5 litres of water. I squeeze the bag very hard and my wort is very cloudy right up until I drop the whirlfloc in at 7 minutes. That stuff is amazing in the way it pulls all the bits together and dumps them on the bottom.


It's this one from The Malt Miller. I needed a slightly larger jar because my hydrometers are quite wide and touch the sides of a 'normal' trial jar. If you have a normal triple-scale hydrometer then you might find this jar takes up more wort than you'd care to lose. You can always tip the wort back in of course but that comes with a risk, especially later on.


As mentioned above it's the whirlfloc that does the magic. There's a good 10mm of trub on the bottom of the sample jar that you can't see in that photograph that settled there within minutes. I tip all the wort, kettle trub and all into the fermenter and what the yeast doesn't want ends up in a nice fat pancake on the bottom that's easy to transfer the beer off.



I used 2278 in a Czech Pils last year. Supposedly one of the Urquell strains. Very nice, clean and crisp, I'd use it again. If you do brew this recipe and it's no good then I'm blaming Weyermann! :laugh8:
Interesting to see you, my clear beer spirit animal, saying you just fire the whole lot onto the FV...

Just so I am clear, you don't try to leave any trub at all behind in the kettle?
 

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Nice looking sample! If you want want a look at typical grists for various german beers, this pdf has them from Narziss as well as examples from actual german breweries.


A lot of the best german beers taste the way they do through process, which is why many US and British takes on them miss the mark imo, either through misunderstanding those processes or simply having a different type of brewery and having to adapt that brewery to lager brewing
 

foxbat

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Nice looking sample! If you want want a look at typical grists for various german beers, this pdf has them from Narziss as well as examples from actual german breweries.


A lot of the best german beers taste the way they do through process, which is why many US and British takes on them miss the mark imo, either through misunderstanding those processes or simply having a different type of brewery and having to adapt that brewery to lager brewing
That's a good read, thank you for the link. I'll refer to that when I cook up my next pilsner recipe.
 

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A lovely afternoon sitting out on the patio enjoying a pint of my Mittelstrasse Helles, brewed back on Feb 28 about 7 weeks ago. Served at 6C from the keg at 20psi. The glass isn't exactly beer-clean if I'm honest but it's what's inside that counts.



I've now tried Saaz, Mittelfruh, Tettnang and Hersbrucker in lagers and Hersbrucker is my favourite because it has a slight fresh lemon flavour that makes it taste very refreshing.
 

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I kegged my Dunkel this morning after 22 days in the fermenter and it was still bubbling at about 1 every 30s which I think must be the CO2 produced during fermentation being released.



FG was 1.010, about 4 points higher than my usual pales which I put down to the base Munich II malt being a little less fermentable than pilsner malt and that I accidentally mashed in at 68C instead of the 66C that I'd aimed for. ABV is 4.5% and the sample jar tasted lovely; rich and nutty.

The keg was fined with Clear-It, purged at 5x15psi and is now on at 20psi and 6C to carbonate and condition. I also got 3 bottles from the fermenter before it ran dry.
 

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I tried the 2 bottles of my Never felt bitter tonight that were the leftovers from the batch that went in the keg.

Unfortunately both were overcarbonated and sour. I did have a funny feeling about this one towards the end of the keg though it was never sour it just didn't seem right somehow. Perhaps I made a mistake somewhere culturing the Fuller's yeast?

Anyhow only 2 bottles wasted and my fermenter's fine because my Helles is wonderful!
 

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Perhaps I made a mistake somewhere culturing the Fuller's yeast?
Question - did you, and in general when you do this so you, use any yeast nutrient?

I read or heard something somewhere recently - the gist was that the yeast we buy in a packet (liquid or dry) also contains all the yeast nutrients needed, but if you're reusing yeast (and I guess that includes culturing up from bottle dregs) then you should add some nutrient.

This gave me cause for concern at the time as I thought the porter I made from reused WY1318 had a slight twang to it. Although after some painstaking scientific research this evening I've concluded this is definitely not the case! ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ˜œ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป

Still got that bottle of 1845 in the fridge - must remember at some point to (a) actually drink it and (b) culture it up, is really like to try it in my Porter!
 

foxbat

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Question - did you, and in general when you do this so you, use any yeast nutrient?

I read or heard something somewhere recently - the gist was that the yeast we buy in a packet (liquid or dry) also contains all the yeast nutrients needed, but if you're reusing yeast (and I guess that includes culturing up from bottle dregs) then you should add some nutrient.

This gave me cause for concern at the time as I thought the porter I made from reused WY1318 had a slight twang to it. Although after some painstaking scientific research this evening I've concluded this is definitely not the case! ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ˜œ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป

Still got that bottle of 1845 in the fridge - must remember at some point to (a) actually drink it and (b) culture it up, is really like to try it in my Porter!
No I didn't use any nutrient in the building up of the starter, just DME. In future it does seem like a good idea to use some DAP when building up a starter from a bottle.

I was thinking more about the bad bottles. This also happened last summer during the heatwave when the temperature where the bottles are stored in the garage reached the mid twenties. I blamed it on the temperature then but without a spoilage organism to grow and infect the beer the gushers wouldn't happen at all. The warm temperature just makes it happen faster.

These bad bottles are going into the recycling bin and hopefully it won't happen again. As I say the keg was never sour and the pressure didn't creep upwards when it was left for a week between sessions.
 

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I'm brewing my Phoney Peroni recipe again this weekend with only a few minor tweaks to the recipe. The yeast will be 2352-PC from the last overbuild. I had a look at the jar in the fridge on Monday and decided that it looked like I'd got a little bit less than usual so instead of a single 2.5l starter with 500ml saved back I've done a two-stage 1l + 2.2l starter and I'll be saving 500ml back from all that.

The first litre went in on Monday night and was visibly done this morning so I tipped it into a further 2.2 litres and that's gone back in the brew-fridge. Hopefully it will be finished by Friday morning so I can chill it ready for decanting into the beer on Sunday night/Monday morning.
 

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Last time I looked at this thread it was on the Phoney Peroni! I quite fancy that, but OTOH I have said I would give up on lager-type beers cos I have no cooling facilities (and the days are getting warmer). What is the temp range for the yeast you used? Does it works at room temp, or require a colder environment?

thanks!
 

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Last time I looked at this thread it was on the Phoney Peroni! I quite fancy that, but OTOH I have said I would give up on lager-type beers cos I have no cooling facilities (and the days are getting warmer). What is the temp range for the yeast you used? Does it works at room temp, or require a colder environment?

thanks!
It's actually quite a generous range for a real lager yeast: 11-16C. I set my fridge half way at about 13.5C for the main part of the fermentation then bring it up to 16C to finish off.
 

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