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About to brew my first Pilsner


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#1 Bellyup

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Posted 19 May 2017 - 03:27 PM

Hi Guys,

I've got the Grainfather worked out now and a few brews under my belt.

I'm in the high country around Orange NSW and the climate is very conducive to lager and pilsners at the moment.

My shed is a consistent 12 -14 deg.C over winter - time to try my hand at some lagers

My favourites would be James Squire Pilsner and Knappstien Premium - clean, crisp, good body with some maltiness and hop flavour.

My recipe will be something like:

 

4 kg Pilsener malt

1kg Bohemian Floor malt

.5 kg Carapils

Mash @ 63 C for 30 min. then 68 C for 30 min then 76 c for 10 min.

Sparge then boil for 70 min.

 

60 min hops - Dr Rudi 20gms

20 min hops - Motueka 20gms

0 min hops-  Motueka 20gms

Wyeast 2278 yeast

 

Ferment and lager

 

Do you think this recipe will work well? - my own invention.

Is my tank water the best to use? - do I need to add stuff?

Should you lager in the racked off brew tubs or keg it?

If kegged to lager - carbonate as well?

Do i need to refrigerate to lager or would 12-14deg. be OK?

Dry hop?

In short - any advice would be appreciated.

Many thanks,

Bruce.

 



#2 peteru

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Posted 20 May 2017 - 12:06 AM

If you can, lager at serving pressure and at around 2C.



#3 Pratty1

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Posted 20 May 2017 - 07:33 AM

Hi Bruce,

I'm no lager expert however will give some info to help with your beer.

- malt bill is good
- mash profile needs adjusting, increase the 63c rest for 60mins. No need for the 68, shift that into alpha phase at 72c for 20mins, this will help with better head retention.
- hops, keep it simple without late or dry hopping. The clean malt bill and yeast flavour just needs a bittering component. Dr Rudi at 70mins and again at 30mins to go. Target 75% ibu at 70 and the rest from the mid boil addition.
- water, tank water from rain will be great, very close to zero ppm for all minerals. To get a small amount of minerals add 2-3 L of tap/town water.
- yeast.....very important you have this right. You need way more than you think. A yeast starter will be required and about 600-800billion yeast cells for the cold temperature. Over pitching is best.
- oxygen, to help the yeast you need plenty of pure O2, if you don't have it, you need to aerate very well, this helps the yeast during lag and initial ferment, plus the long cold ferment and lagering.
- when you plan to lager, don't carbonate, just purge head space of keg with CO2. Leave for 30 days then transfer to carbonation/serving keg. (Can use no chill cube to lager as well)

That's about it. Good luck, pills and lagers are not easy.

#4 Bellyup

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Posted 20 May 2017 - 10:32 AM

Great information fellas!!
Pratty, does your 70% bittering rule apply to all beers or just lagers?
Thanks for the help on boil temps and time.
Happy to apply any other tips, many thanks.

#5 Bellyup

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Posted 20 May 2017 - 10:40 AM

Fellas,
Is there an economical option to oxygenate wort with gas?

#6 Danscraftbeer

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Posted 20 May 2017 - 10:54 AM

Depends how much you want to lay out for your o2. The more you spend the more economical it is but bigger lay out.

Eg: I got the big bottle from Bunnings set up but it will probably last me my life time. You could actually get that set up today for ~ $350.

Otherwise there are the little throw away bottle set ups some suppliers on this forum have them but you have to wait for the post etc.

Off the top of my head I cant remember the supplier? Someone point them out? 

 

For the meantime you can seal the ferment vessel and roll it on its side. Shake/mix it well for say 3-4 minutes to aerate the wort. That works good enough.


Edited by Danscraftbeer, 20 May 2017 - 11:16 AM.


#7 Danscraftbeer

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Posted 20 May 2017 - 10:57 AM

Brewman I think supplies a small set up.

Search o2 set ups. Wort aeration kits.


Edited by Danscraftbeer, 20 May 2017 - 11:08 AM.


#8 Ducatiboy stu

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Posted 20 May 2017 - 11:24 AM

You should go all Czech SAAZ  :)



#9 Pratty1

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Posted 20 May 2017 - 12:00 PM

Great information fellas!!
Pratty, does your 70% bittering rule apply to all beers or just lagers?
Thanks for the help on boil temps and time.
Happy to apply any other tips, many thanks.


Just lagers, ales are 30% bittering the rest late.

#10 Bellyup

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Posted 20 May 2017 - 01:21 PM

Pratty,

Re the mash:

 

- mash profile needs adjusting, increase the 63c rest for 60mins. No need for the 68, shift that into alpha phase at 72c for 20mins, this will help with better head retention.

 

Would you still do the 10 min.@75 deg. even though you are @ 72 deg?



#11 peteru

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Posted 20 May 2017 - 01:41 PM

- when you plan to lager, don't carbonate, just purge head space of keg with CO2. Leave for 30 days then transfer to carbonation/serving keg. (Can use no chill cube to lager as well)


I disagree. Pilsener Urquell and all the other Czech breweries I visited, lager their beer under pressure. You can tap the beer straight from the lagering tanks and it's perfectly carbonated, just too cold to drink.



#12 Pratty1

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Posted 20 May 2017 - 02:25 PM

Pratty,
Re the mash:

- mash profile needs adjusting, increase the 63c rest for 60mins. No need for the 68, shift that into alpha phase at 72c for 20mins, this will help with better head retention.

Would you still do the 10 min.@75 deg. even though you are @ 72 deg?


63/60, 72/20, 78/10mins

Beta Amalayse, Alpha Amalayse, cease enzyme activity with mash out temp.

#13 Phoney

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Posted 20 May 2017 - 05:45 PM

I disagree. Pilsener Urquell and all the other Czech breweries I visited, lager their beer under pressure. You can tap the beer straight from the lagering tanks and it's perfectly carbonated, just too cold to drink.

 

Yeah I just keg my lagers and avoid reaching for 'that tap' for a while, after 3-4 weeks they clear up and lose their yeasty aromas. That's lagering in a nutshell. 


Edited by Phoney, 20 May 2017 - 05:46 PM.


#14 manticle

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Posted 20 May 2017 - 05:51 PM

Late hopping with a noble (saaz or tett for example) is totally fine with a pils.

Your mash schedule is also fine but I'd reduce the 63 to 10-15 and increase the 68 to 45.

#15 Midnight Brew

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Posted 20 May 2017 - 07:12 PM

Pratty has done a fantastic job of covering the difference between a good lager and a great lager.

I dont have much to add other than Manticle's post about mash temperature. Personally I have found a step at 63 for 10 minutes combined with proper aeration, you'll get great attenuation (can be yeast dependent as I've read). I also find the rest at 68C to give decent body, if that is what you are chasing. Good thing is that you have a grainfather so step mashes are easy, play it to your advantage.