Bavarian Hefeweizen

March 20, 2011 at 1:25 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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The next brew is Northern Brewer’s Bavarian Hefeweizen. This recipe was much simpler than the other extract kits that I’ve gotten from Norther Brewer. Wheat malt syrup, dry malt powder, and one bag of 60-minute hops. And the yeast, of course. I guess that’s the point of this beer; it’s all about the wheat and the yeast.

I brewed it yesterday with some friends. We ended up putting it in the carboy at 7:30PM, and it was already bubbling away this morning at 10AM. It smells distinctly different from other beers I’ve brewed at this stage. It smells lighter and cleaner somehow. Curious.

Here is a list of the beers that I’ve brewed so far.

St. Paul’s Porter, 08/2009. This one showed signs of an infection on bottling day, after the beer was in secondary fermentation for a few weeks. I did secondary fermentation in a plastic bucket instead of a glass carboy, since I didn’t have two carboys. There were a few strands of moldy looking stuff in the beer. Rather than toss it, I scooped out the strands with a sanitized slotted spoon, and bottled it, hoping for the best. It turned out ok, and I inspected every bottle of beer as I opened and poured it for signs of anything that shouldn’t be there, and found none. Every bottle was fine, and it tasted ok, but I couldn’t bring myself to offer it to anyone else. I eventually drank it all, but the experience as a whole was not completely satisfying.

Caribou Slobber Brown Ale, 03/2010. This time I cleaned and sanitized the plastic secondary fermenter scrupulously, and the beer came out a winner. Seriously good. Like, I’d pay money for this beer, good. Everyone who tasted it liked it. This success really fired me up for long term home brewing.

Belgian Dubbel, 07/2010. This time I took advantage of a sale NB was having on 5-gallon glass carboys. No more fermenting in plastic for me! This beer was another huge success. Belgian hard candies were added during the boil. It is a nice, complex beer that gets better with age. I have two bottles left in the basement that I’m saving for a special occasion, maybe for when my Dad visits next, hopefully this summer. Jenny doesn’t care for it, but I love it.

Caribou Slobber Brown Ale, 08/2010. I had lots of requests to make this one again, and it was just as good as the last time. I think I have to make this one a regular in the rotation.

Winter Warmer, 12/2010. This one had more fermentable sugars in the wort (unfermented beer), resulting in a higher alcohol content in the end. This recipe required a yeast starter for that reason; it lets the yeast multiply before brewing day so there’s enough of them to handle all those carbs. It turned out tasty, but the carbonation was weak. This was most likely due to the beer being stored at too cold a temperature, about 60 degrees F, right after bottling. After I realized this (I first tried it two weeks after bottling, and it was flat) I put the bottles in a temperature regulated container at 70 degrees F. One week later, it’s better, but still low carbonation. I’ll try it after another week or two and see how it turned out. I’m considering adding more sugar to the bottles and recapping them, but I’ll try being patient and waiting first. I hope the carbonation picks up, because I think it’s nice and tasty. One last note: I didn’t realize that one should swirl the yeast starter around a couple of times per day as it’s getting ready. I didn’t do this, but I’ll do it next time to see if it makes a difference.

The next beer is probably going to be Caribou Slobber again since it’s always (all two times) a winner.

I really like my hobby.

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