April 26, 2014
At Dickie’s Pale Ale brew, Kyle and Tom discussed a Kölsch, a top fermented, German ale with mild hop character. The grain bill was pretty much straight Pilsner malt with a little Munich and/or Vienna thrown in. We went with the Spalt hops as it seemed appropriate for the style and to try something besides Hallertau in the German beers. A single infusion mash at about 150 F should give us a dry German ale.
We had a great day for brewing with a lot of firsts. First time we’ve done a Kölsch. We went mobil for the first time and brewed at Kyle’s. We couldn’t find leaf Spalt hops so tried the pellet. At the end of the day, all went successfully.
20 gallons- Single Infusion Mash
Brewers- Kyle L, Charlie U, Mike C, Andy D, Tom V
- 35# Pilsner malt
- 2# Munich malt
- 1# Vienna malt
- 8 oz 3.2% Spalt pellet hops
- 10 gallons of mash water
- Strike Temp = 168 F
- Mash Temp = 148 F; added a couple of gallons of hot water to bring temp to 153 F and held for 2 hours
- Added 5 gallons of 190 F water to raise temp to 170 F. First official mash out with the big equipment!
- 10′ recirculation
- 15′ runoff
- 60′ sparge with 15 gallons of water treated with a teaspoon of phosphoric acid
- Collected 24 gallons of wort (used a total of 32 gallons of water and nailed the 24 gallons for pre boil)
- 60′ boil add all Spalt hops
- 15′ Irish moss and cooling coil
- 1 hour cold break
- Collected about 20 gallons to fermenter
- Starting Gravity = 1.051
A beautiful day for brewing! Everything went well. We hit all our marks. Quite pleased with the starting gravity. The sample was good but I noted a hint of cardboard flavor; we’ll monitor as we go forward. First time with a solid Mash Out. Still need to go a little hotter with the strike water as we never seem to come in hot enough. Overall a great brew day.
Friday, May 9.
This is a quick turn beer. We’re trying to get it ready for the Crawfish Boil, one month after brewing. We kegged 10 gallons of the beer for the party and racked the other 10.
Final Gravity = 1.012
ABV = 5%
The sample was good, still a little on the hoppy, green side, but it looks like it will mature into a nice beer.
May 25, 2014- Post Crawfish Boil
We drank all 10 gallons of Kölsch at the boil. It was a little too over carbonated the first few pours, but the head settled in and it was pretty much a hit. Some didn’t care for it, preferring the Pale or the Red, but it was so much a criticism of the beer but rather the style, I think.
The spalt hops was different. At least I was tasting a bit of “off” flavor that may be a remnant of the “cardboard” flavor I mentioned early in the sample. It could be from the hops, but perhaps it is a factor of the long, 2 hour mash. Did we lose too many long-chain sugars? Am I thinking too hard about this?
I did think, of the three beers, the Kölsch served best from the iced down keg. I thought the Irish Red and the Pale were way too cold to be appropriate, but the Kölsch was good cold.
The beer seemed to get better as the night went on. It went well with the crawfish. Most really enjoyed it, but we still have 10 gallons that need to be packaged and I think it will continue to improve with cold aging.