"White whales" for homebrewers

Discussion in 'Homebrewing' started by evantwomey, Oct 2, 2012.

  1. My only attempt thus far has been by cold-smoking the entire grainbill for a schwarzbier using cherrywood. It came out really awesome but distinct from Schlenkerla. I'm not sure if the difference is primarily due to the smoking method or the type of wood I used, but for my next try I might do something similar but with beechwood. My one experience with the Weyermann rauchmalz was really disappointing (probably wasn't fresh) so I'll probably smoke my own in any future attempts.

    Given the combination of factors that go into a rauchbier, I could easily see myself spending a few years trying to get that style down.
  2. Different woods give different smoke flavors. Just as in smoked meats. Try beechwood. The other thing is the time and temperature of the smoking that the brewers do in Bamberg, which is information they don't give out.
  3. I am trying to make the perfect Witbier.
  4. I'm about 6 batches in. Here are the ones I'm really looking for.

    1. Crisp, Citrusy, 7.5% IPA. More citrus than two-hearted, less than a citra bomb (too tropical).
    2. Aventinus.
    3. Belgian IPA -- Between Raging Bitch and Houblon Chouffe. Previous poster, could you perhaps offer some advice?
  5. hopsandmalt

    hopsandmalt Savant (390) Michigan Dec 14, 2006 Verified

    The last time I made my Belgian IPA I didn't try too hard to reign in the fermentation temperature thinking that a higher temp would allow the yeast funk to shine through the hops but It just ended up tasting like hopped up rocket fuel.

    I've also just started paying attention to the mineral content of my water and I have found that my water is better suited for malty beers. I have been adjusting my hoppy beer's mash water with gypsum and I have noticed a positive difference so I am going to try that with the Belgian IPA next time.
  6. Interesting -- thanks hopsandmalt.
  7. udubdawg

    udubdawg Advocate (550) Kansas Dec 11, 2006

    the only style I've tried to make repeatedly, where any real success has eluded me, is Southern English Brown. However I don't think it'll ever be a style I really enjoy, so I doubt that counts. should probably just pasteurize and back-sweeten and get back to beers I actually like.

  8. Just a solid American Pale Ale. There are several styles where I've got a good recipe that I really like, but I can't get the APA just right to how I like it. One would think this is an easy style, but it continues to befuddle me.
  9. GreenKrusty101

    GreenKrusty101 Savant (460) Nevada Dec 4, 2008 Verified

    Viscosity...I brew so many IPAs, etc. that mashing higher (160*F or so) is anathema to me...and when I do (rarely), I can't seem to put enough unfermentables into the grain bill to get the body without the perceived sweetness.

    For those thinking I use too much US-05...I've had similar results with less attenuative yeasts. Think I might try a 30 min mash/mashing out consistently...or using some maltodextrine.
  10. memory

    memory Savant (270) Pennsylvania Oct 2, 2005

    I've been trying to do a Wee Heavy like DuckRabbits but not getting near the same result in taste. Wish I had a recipe along their lines, emailed them but no response. Anyway I love that rich malt on a cold winter night.
  11. FATC1TY

    FATC1TY Moderator (910) Georgia Feb 12, 2012 Staff Member Verified Subscriber

    Oohhhhh good call..

    A nice wee heavy scotch ale.. It's pretty elusive to get that balance in there at times. When hit, it's a hard knock, and something you can't put down.

  12. Founders imperial stout? I've got that recipe, direct from the brewer. I've brewed it, and it's a damn fine beer -- the only change I made was using wyeast 1084 instead of 1056. I also used maris otter here - I'm guessing they probably use a US 2-row for the real thing, but I figured I'd give MO a try. Here is the recipe with the percentages exactly as specified by the brewer, scaled to a 6 gallon batch, og 1.107, target fg ~1.027, ~90 IBUs. Some of the hops times/amounts were guessed (the brewer said he bitters with Nugget and flavors/finishes with Perle, targeting 100 IBUs).

    19.36 lb Pale Malt, Maris Otter (3.0 SRM) Grain 71.0 %
    1.91 lb Munich Malt (9.0 SRM) Grain 7.0 %
    1.64 lb Caramel/Crystal Malt - 80L (80.0 SRM) Grain 6.0 %
    1.09 lb Barley, Flaked (1.7 SRM) Grain 4.0 %
    1.09 lb Black (Patent) Malt (500.0 SRM) Grain 4.0 %
    1.09 lb Chocolate Malt (450.0 SRM) Grain 4.0 %
    1.09 lb Roasted Barley (300.0 SRM) Grain 4.0 %
    2.50 oz Nugget [13.00%] (60 min) Hops 67.7 IBU
    2.00 oz Perle [8.00%] (20 min) Hops 20.2 IBU
    2.00 oz Perle [8.00%] (3 min) Hops 4.1 IBU
  13. memory

    memory Savant (270) Pennsylvania Oct 2, 2005

    Agreed. The good ones really shine. A little heat in them doesn't hurt either. My next batch I'll try Golden Promise or Optic malt and see if that helps.
  14. maximep

    maximep Savant (265) New York Oct 23, 2009

    a nice "Jonge Lambic" although impossible to make, would be awesome. (impossible because of limitations in terroir)
  15. Bourbon oak aged English Barleywine is up there for me. My first attempt was bottled about a week and a half ago, so I'll see how it turned out soon enough.
  16. There are quite a few beers I'd love to perfect, but most I hadn't done more than once (like the one Oktoberfest I did).

    The one beer I've been chasing has been the Kolsch. First one (extract) came out almost exactly how I wanted it. The second (extract) I learned I need to make starters. The third (all grain) I tried messing with the hop schedule and ruined it. Planning on doing another in a few weeks, but doing it more like a straight all grain version of the first.
  17. herrburgess

    herrburgess Champion (925) South Carolina Nov 4, 2009 Verified

    Koelsch is one that I feel like I have now come close to perfecting. A big part of this is that I have dialed in my numbers such that I can simply purchase and mill an entire 55# bag of Weyermann Pilsner malt, add my Hallertau hops, and pitch yeast obtained from a local brewery that uses WLP029...and it works out perfectly for brewing 30 gallons on my 1 BBL system. Plus the wife loves Koelsch, so that helps.