The How My Averagely Perfect Kölsch Turned Out Thread

Discussion in 'Homebrewing' started by VikeMan, Jul 14, 2020.

  1. VikeMan

    VikeMan Poo-Bah (2,028) Jul 12, 2009 Pennsylvania
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    The polls closed a little over a month ago, so here is the thread to post about how your Averagely Perfect Kölsch turned out. The crowd sourced recipe is -> here <-.
     
  2. pweis909

    pweis909 Poo-Bah (1,964) Aug 13, 2005 Wisconsin
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    Am I the first to brew this? It's been in the keg for a week. The measured OG was 1.045 and FG as 1.008. The beer is pale as expected, and quite hazy. It is light in body, dry, and with some unexpected bitterness to the finish. Or perhaps that is astringency? There is a slight estery characteristic that I associate with other Kolsch beers I have made. I also am picking up some sulfur notes that I do not remember from those other beers, I am hoping more time will take care of the haziness/bitterness/astringency issues. I don't think I mind the sulfur, although it may interfere with the estery characters.
     
  3. dmtaylor

    dmtaylor Aspirant (238) Dec 30, 2003 Wisconsin

    Good to hear a report on this @pweis909. Sulfur should dissipate in a couple two-tree weeks in my experience -- thankfully temporary. Haze could last a while, this is like the slowest yeast in the universe to flocculate out. Gelatin would help. (I'm of course assuming you didn't deviate and actually used the 2565 as specified.) I'll bet it's a wonderful beer in another 4-6 weeks. Patience and time.
     
  4. pweis909

    pweis909 Poo-Bah (1,964) Aug 13, 2005 Wisconsin
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    I used 2565. I deviated, ever so slightly, on the hops. The recipe calls for slightly over 1 oz of both Tettnang and Hallertau Mittelfruh, and I only had 1 oz of each. To compensate for this slight difference in hop mass as well as differences in %AA, I added 0.13 oz of Tradition (6.6%) AA at 60 min.

    I do think this one will get better with time in the keg. The yeast drop will eventually take care of the slight astringency. I believe this is only my fourth time brewing a Kolsch, and the other three got delicious with time.
     
  5. pweis909

    pweis909 Poo-Bah (1,964) Aug 13, 2005 Wisconsin
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    Another tasting. Still hazy, but I no longer notice the astringency/bitterness I called out before. The batch is a success. My previous efforts at the style were 100% pils malt. I think I would prefer all pils to this blend that included 10% wheat mal, but it would take a side by side comparison to be sure.
     
  6. OldBrewer

    OldBrewer Disciple (311) Jan 13, 2016 Canada (ON)

    I'm just wondering why you would mash this at 149 F? In my experience, Kolsch is not that dry but has a slight residual sweetness. Thus a higher mash temperature of about 152 F might be warranted.
     
  7. dmtaylor

    dmtaylor Aspirant (238) Dec 30, 2003 Wisconsin

    Because the crowd-sourced recipe said so! With a few mouse clicks we could look back on any debate on the mash temperature.

    In my own experience, the difference in final beer characteristics based on a 3-degree difference between 149 to 152 F is probably undetectable, at least in flavor/body/mouthfeel. Might be a nice idea for a series of controlled experiments to anyone so inclined.
     
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  8. dmtaylor

    dmtaylor Aspirant (238) Dec 30, 2003 Wisconsin

  9. OldBrewer

    OldBrewer Disciple (311) Jan 13, 2016 Canada (ON)

  10. pweis909

    pweis909 Poo-Bah (1,964) Aug 13, 2005 Wisconsin
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    I think the beer I brewed would benefit from a touch of sweetness, although it is not clear to me that a recipe tweak is what is needed. Higher mash temp, use of all pils malt, or less hops maybe would make that difference for me. On the other hand, maybe I messed up - I noted a slight astringency that is fading -- and that is what is making me think it needs sweetness. Hard to say. For me, this isn't the best Kolsch I ever made, but it is still quite likeable.
     
  11. Applecrew135

    Applecrew135 Initiate (52) Jul 18, 2012 Pennsylvania

    I threw my hat in the ring for my first "Averagely Perfect" brew, and I have to admit that I am liking the direction my brew is going. It did finish a bit lower than anticipated - 1.004... the lowest SG I've ever achieved. I did lower the wheat a bit but really did not deviate too far from the recipe. It is strikingly pale and clear. This will be going for a nap at about 34F next week. I'm anticipating big things after the lagering. Nice job!

    "I see you shiver... with antici...."
     
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  12. Applecrew135

    Applecrew135 Initiate (52) Jul 18, 2012 Pennsylvania

    I am amazed at how well this turned out. Totally nailed it! It was hard to get an image that showed just how clear it is; the glass has a lot of condensation on it. Pretty damn crushable! Great mouthfeel, just a touch of fruitiness. Very dry. Next time I brew this, I am going to up the mash temp a degree or two.

    [​IMG]
     
  13. VikeMan

    VikeMan Poo-Bah (2,028) Jul 12, 2009 Pennsylvania
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    I don't know how many folks are familiar with the Mean Brews series of style recipes based on analyses of award winning recipes. I had seen a couple of their Youtube video presentations and they sort of remided me of the analyses Ray Daniels did back in the day in "Designing Great Beers," i.e a lot of number crunching to identify central tendencies in successful recipes. Overall, they are pretty impressive, IMO.

    @hopfenunmaltz pointed out to me that they had done a Kölsch recipe (based on 31 award winners), so I decided to look at the result compared with the Averagely Perfect crowd sourced Kölsch recipe. I compiled the results side by side, and also included a column of notes on how Mean Brews arrived at each recipe element, or at least how I think they did, based on my viewing of the video at...

    [​IMG]

    At times during the various Averagely Perfect projects, I wondered how close the recipes would be to the result we'd get if I just solicited and "averaged" everyone's personal ideal recipes, rather than do the whole step by step discussion and voting thing, where each decision was (or should have been) made in the context of what went before. It occurs to me that the Mean Brews method is similar to that unused alternative.
     
    #13 VikeMan, Sep 8, 2021
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2021
  14. hopfenunmaltz

    hopfenunmaltz Poo-Bah (1,901) Jun 8, 2005 Michigan
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    Very similar, some small differences. Yeast choice is one larger difference. Thanks for doing the comparison.
     
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