11 June 2016

posted by benjy edwards

The IPL has had two weeks in primary, so for the third use of the lager yeast we settled on another Bohemian Pilsner.  This style is just so tasty and since we brew so infrequently with lager yeast, I wanted to make another ten gallons before switching back to ales.

However, there was the small matter of having no pilsner malt, no domestic two-row, and a desire to minimize the use of our favourite malt, English Maris Otter.  This malt has just such a characteristic bold biscuity flavour that using it for most of the grist would be inappropriate for a pilsner.  The solution was to come up with a very strange grist: 30% Maris Otter, 14% each of wheat, Vienna, and flaked maize, then around 5% each of flaked barley, oat malt, and carapils, plus small quantities of aromatic and melanoidin malts.  This was supplemented by two pounds of dextrose in the boil to achieve the target gravity of 1.050, and a very pale colour of 4 SRM.

While the mash rested for 30 minutes, we prepared to keg the IPL.  Two cornies were dry-hopped with an ounce each of Citra and Centennial, and during the vorlauf we pushed the IPL into the kegs from the Speidel via co2 pressure.  This went smoothly again, and we had a gallon left over.  The beer is nicely hoppy, and although hazy, this should clear again during the lagering.

The pilsner was boiled, with Azacca for bittering and Saaz at 20, 10, and 0 minutes for a total of 50 IBU.  We were only one point short of the target OG, at 1.049.  The ground water here is already warming up, so the best we could do on the chill was to get the wort to the mid-70s.  We will have to use the fridge to get the temperature down to the 53F pitching temperature.  Note: as of late this evening, the temp was down to 64F, and in the morning it was 56F, and finally reached 53F in the early afternoon on Sunday.

This will likely be the last use of this yeast, partly because this fermenter needs to be returned to Morebeer since the lid doesn’t seal.  They already sent us a replacement, which we will use next time we brew lagers.

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