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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Halvtreds - Soured Red Lager

Halvtreds aka Batch 50
The day after Thanksgiving I set up my system early in the morning (6:30) and set to working brewing my 50th beer.  It was coded named Batch 50 for so long that when it came time to write this post I knew it by nothing else so in a last ditch effort to not call it Batch 50 I translated fifty into Danish and got the name Halvtreds.  I think Halvtreds is a pretty suiting name for a red colored beer. 

When I set out to craft a recipe for my 50th batch of beer I had a few critria for myself: 
  1. It should have the ability to be aged
  2. It could be an ale or a lager but should be brewed with the house yeast (WLP007 for Ales and WLP840 for Lagers)
  3. The hops used should be northwest hops
  4. It should include ingredients that are indicative to me

I made a 3 pint starter with
some amber DME
I decided along the way that Halvtreds should be a mile stone in another way and decided to make it my first full on sour beer. I've been playing with funk in BeanyTink Farmstead Ale, SNB can be CynicAle and DG' Peach Farm but had yet to venture into anything over the top sour.

Venturing back to my list of criterion here's how Halvtreds fits the bill.
  1. A 6.8 sour will not only take over a year to develop but should last well beyond
  2. I decided to make it a lager and pitched a lager starter made with second pitch of WLP840
  3. Cascade for the bittering plus some Citra and Cascade for flavor with an ounce of  Columbus at knockout. 
  4. It's a partial mash that incorporated some of my favorite malts (Victory and Carared) and a lb of Rice extract a la Scott's BIG IPL.  The grain bill itself is almost identical by percentages to StarRaptor

A few things I learned while researching sours that I figure I would pass on;  1) IBUs are keep light for a reason, too much above 20 IBUs will hamper the bugs as hops are a preservative.  2) Some styles of sours are initially brewed clean then soured with bugs after primary while others are given an overnight souring mash at 120 degrees.  For Halvtreds I kept the IBUs minimal (20.5) and scheduled a clean lager fermentation.

Transferring to the fermentor
For the bugs I'm going to try to get my hands one of the sour strains from East Coast Yeast.  I missed the last round while out shopping over the weekend but with a month or more of clean fermentation I have time to try again.  Worst case I'll pitch a White Labs sour blend with some bottle dregs.

Brewday itself was pretty smooth, I had to go into work at 4:00 AM then hit up some Black Friday sales so I was able to get an early start.  

I mashed high at 156 because I wanted to give the bugs some extra food to chew on.  I initially missed my mash temperature so I drained some of the liquid and heated it up in a small pot allowing me to nail the 156 temp I was looking for.  I'd been trying to shorten my mash time to 20-30 minutes but for this round I set it initially at 40 so I could keg up Scott's BIG IPL w/ Citra.  It took me a little longer and by the time I heated my sparge water the mash ended up being around 55 minutes.  Oh well next time.


Halvtreds (Batch 50)
Sour Red Lager
Type: Partial Mash 
Date: 11/25/2011
Batch Size (fermenter): 5.00 gal 
Brewer: Scott Bennett
Boil Size: 6.93 gal  
Boil Time: 60 min 
Equipment: Brew Pot (12.5 gal) and Igloo Cooler (10 Gal)
End of Boil Volume 5.72 gal 
Brewhouse Efficiency: 64.00 %
Measured Efficiency 65.00 %
Fermentation: Lager, Three Stage 

Beer Profile
Est Original Gravity: 1.067 SG 
Measured Original Gravity: 1.068 SG
Est Final Gravity: 1.016 SG 
Estimated Alcohol by Vol: 6.8 %
Bitterness: 20.5 IBUs
Est Color: 15.1 SRM 

3 lbs 6.4 oz Pale Malt (2 Row) UK (3.0 SRM)
3 lbs Light Dry Extract (8.0 SRM)
2 lbs 2.0 oz Rye Malt (4.7 SRM)
1 lbs Rice Extract Syrup (7.0 SRM)
13.6 oz Carared (20.0 SRM)
11.6 oz Caramel/Crystal Malt - 40L (40.0 SRM)
7.3 oz Victory Malt (25.0 SRM)
6.8 oz Munich Malt (9.0 SRM)
2.2 oz Chocolate Malt (350.0 SRM)

0.50 oz Cascade [5.50 %] - First Wort 60.0 min
0.50 oz Cascade [5.50 %] - Boil 18.0 min
0.25 oz Citra [12.00 %] - Boil 16.0 min
1.00 oz Columbus (Tomahawk) [14.00 %] - Boil 0.0 min Hop

1.00 Starter of WLP840 American Lager Yeast

1.00 Items Whirlfloc Tablet (Boil 15.0 mins) Fining 13 -
1.00 tsp Yeast Nutrient (Boil 15.0 mins) Other 14 -

Mash Profile

Mash Name
Single Infusion, Full Body, Batch Sparge 
Total Grain Weight: 12 lbs 1.8 oz
Sparge Water: 5.62 gal 
Sparge Temperature: 168.0 F 

Mash Steps
Mash In Add 10.12 qt of water at 168.3 F 156.0 F 45 min
Sparge Step: Batch sparge with 2 steps (2.03gal, 3.59gal) of 168.0 F water

Started with 3 pint starter made with 2 pint mason jars of WLP840 harvested from Scott's BIG IPL w/ Citra
Ferment mid 50s for 10 days, d-rest at 68 then transfer to secondary and lager till bugs get here

Additional Pictures
Cooling down the starter
Adding one of two pints of harvested yeast
Mash temp nailed
First wort hops
The DME side
Running off
Hops, fining and nutrient
Getting ready to start cooling down
Hanging out in an ice bath to drop to pitching temp
Aerated and pitched
24 hours later

1 comment:

  1. Very cool. Don't think I've ever heard of a sour lager, so it sounds pretty innovative to me.

    I keep telling myself I should do a sour beer, but have not decided how to go about doing it yet. I suppose I'm a little scared to do one.

    Good luck. Hope to hear more about it.


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