Weissbier/Hefeweizen, I’ve had a few request for this beer style and decided to get a batch brewed for summer. This beer finishes my summer trifecta of german beers (first the Helles and then the Kolsch). German beers are just so approachable and delicious that they are really perfect beers for summer time drinking. Went pretty classic for this recipe using just wheat, pilsner malt and a touch of melanoidin. I did to a 3 step infusion mash with the 1st step being at 113 degrees for a ferulic acid rest. This step is used to increase the clove flavors and aroma that the weissbier yeast will impart. New for this brew was a 6” diameter stainless steel hop filter since I’ve been having some issues with my dip tube clogging towards the end of the runoff. The hop filter worked great and kept pretty much all the hop matter contained and running off went perfectly smooth. My only concern is with hop utilization, but I’ll be able to check that out on a hoppier brew.
Mash: 113 (20 min.), 145 (40 min.) 158 (30 min.)
Boil: 75 min.
Mash pH: 5.4
57.8% Wheat Malt
37.8% Pilsner Malt
2.2% Melanoidin Malt
2.2% Acidulated Malt
0.75 oz Sterling (4.5%) 60 min.
0.50 oz Sterling (4.5%) 10 min.
Wyeast 3068 – Weihenstephan Weizen Ale
Made 1l yeast starter the day before for a normal pitch rate. Cooled wort down to 72 with the wort chiller and brought down to 62 in the fermentation freezer. Pitched yeast and let free rise to 64 and maintained temp. for 1st few days of fermentation. Will ramp up temp as fermentation slows to get complete fermentation. Freezer had a huge banana aroma during fermentation.
Finished out much drier than I thought, but it was a really active fermentation with a good amount of blow off. When I was researching this beer it seemed that most the recipes had an attenuation of around 75%, which is right in line with what Wyeast lists and the attenuation range for this beer. After looking a little bit online, I was able to find out what a few true german breweries were attenuating this beer to. My 83% attenuation is more in line with what Paulaner Hefe-Weizen (82%) and Erdinger Hefe-Weizen (84%) & Franziskaner Hefe-Weissbier (84%). My preference is for a drier beer anyway so I’m pretty hopeful this will drink like a classic example.
Dropped off 3 bottles to compete in the Oregon State Fair Homebrew Competition. The judging is in two weeks, so I’m guessing I’ll get my scores back in a month or so and will upload the judges comments then.
Update – 10.31 – It’s taken me awhile to post the results from the competition but here they are below. This beer didn’t place but received generally pretty decent scores. It was interesting to note one judge didn’t perceive the typical weizen esters, but I noticed a ton of banana and a little bit of clove. The other judge thought there was more clove than banana, but both present. Also both judges noted a sourness/tartness in the flavor of the beer. I personally didn’t pick this up too much, by after some research it seems like this yeast strain can produce a little bit of acidity so that makes sense. Hopefully I wasn’t marked down for that since according to the 2008 style guidelines “A tart, citrusy character from yeast…” is part of the style.
Tasting notes – 8.13.15
Appearance: Bottled samples were a murky pale golden with a billowy white head. Kegged sample as of this tasting was a clear pale golden with a nice head as well. The yeast has dropped out and is looking more like a krystalweizen at this point. It took about 3 weeks in the kegerator to clear.
Aroma: Huge banana aroma up front. No hops but there is a nice grainy note that comes through towards the end.
Taste: Banana up front and moves to a malty graininess. Hops balance but no hop flavors are evident. There’s a little bit of spice towards the end and finishes pretty clean with minimal lingering flavors on the palate.
Mouthfeel: Medium to medium plus body with medium high carbonation. A nice creaminess to this one.
Overall: Well for my 1st attempt at this style I’m feeling pretty good about this one. The banana really comes through both in the nose and the flavors and some spice/clove comes through as the beer warms up a bit. It drinks clean and easy as you’d expect from a good hefeweizen and it very well attenuated. I’d like to get a better mix of clove and spice on the next version of this beer and possibly bring in some vienna malt and up the maltiness.