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Style of the Week: German Style Pilsner!

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June 18, 2015 by fhsteinbart


The wonderful world of Pilsener beer glasses! There's one for just about anyone who enjoys the great presentation of an awesome beer!

The wonderful world of Pilsener beer glasses! There’s one for just about anyone who enjoys the great presentation of an awesome beer!

Last week I talked about the original pilsner beer style from the Czech Republic. Today we’re going to put on our Tyrolean hats, and don our Lederhosen, and put on the Oompah-Pah music. What differentiates this beer from last weeks is the body, mouthfeel, and finish. According to the BJCP, this style is different from the aforementioned Bohemian Pilsener by being “drier and crisper than a Bohemian Pilsener with a bitterness that tends to linger more in the aftertaste due to higher attenuation and higher-sulfate water. Lighter in body and color, and with higher carbonation than a Bohemian Pilsener. Modern examples of German Pilsners tend to become paler in color, drier in finish, and more bitter as you move from South to North in Germany”. So, with that knowledge in hand, let’s go and make a beer that I like to have around when I want something light, hoppy, and clean.

Extract:

6 lbs. Extra Light DME

2 oz. Liberty Hops (bitterness)

1 oz. Liberty hops (flavor)

1 oz.  Liberty hops (aroma)

Wyeast 2124, WLP830, or W34/70 Lager yeast

Procedure:

  • Heat 6½ gallons of water to 165°F.
  • Turn off heat and add malt extract, stirring until fully dissolved.
  • Return to Heat, bring back to boil.
  • After 10 minutes, add the bittering hop addition.
  • At 20 minutes remaining, add the Whirlfloc tablet or Irish Moss.
  • At 15 minutes remaining, add the flavor hops.
  • At knockout, add the aroma hops, then cool the mixture by placing kettle in an ice bath or use a wort chiller. Add the mixture to the fermenter, removing the hops, and bring total volume to 5 gallons using distilled, bottled, or filtered tap water.
  • Aerate unfermented wort (shaking works well).
  • Pitch yeast and ferment at 54°~56°F for 7 to 10 days.
  • Allow to age an additional 2~3 weeks before packaging up as usual.

All Grain:

10 lbs. Pilsner Malt

2 oz. Liberty Hops (bitterness)

1 oz. Liberty Hops (flavor)

1 oz.  Liberty Hops (aroma)

Wyeast 2124, WLP830, or W34/70 Lager yeast

¾ gm. Brewing (Burton) Salts or Gypsum per gallon (~3.75 gms. or 1 level tsp.) in the mash and in the boil.

Procedure:

Infusion mash at 147°F for 1 hour. Sparge to 6.5 gallons of wort, and bring to a roiling boil. Add the bittering hops 10 minutes into the boil. Continue boiling for 40 more min. then add Whirlfloc tablet or Irish moss.  At 45 min. then add flavor hops. At knockout, add the aroma hops, then cool the mixture by placing kettle in an ice bath or using a wort chiller. Add mixture to fermenter, removing hops, and aerate unfermented wort (shaking works well). Pitch yeast and ferment at 54°F to 56°F. Gravity may vary depending on system efficiency, so adjust accordingly.

Package up as usual; bottled versions should use 125 gms. corn sugar (approx. ¾ cup), or kegged to 22 psig, and allow two weeks to come into condition. Serve at 45°~50°F in an Pilsner style glass, share, and enjoy! This beer will continue to evolve and change over the coming months, so make enough to last you through your next brew.

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