Proven Pilsner Recipe Please

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Meatymc
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Proven Pilsner Recipe Please

Post by Meatymc » Tue Oct 29, 2019 1:03 pm

I'm under pressure to produce a pilsner/lager by the females in the tribe for a couple of events late Spring 2020. I've previously done a Pilsner and a Kolsch which were (apparently) fairly well liked but did nothing for me whatsoever so I'm looking for suggestions.

I'm happy to buy in whatever ingredients are necessary and can control the fermentation and lagering without a problem. My limitation however is equipment for the mash/boil/cooling as I've only the single kettle heated on a single burner in the garage. I no chill in the cube but have recently started re-boiling a gallon of wort for late hop additions as I can rapid cool a normal pan via a large sink and ice cubes.

So what I'm really saying is complications like decoctions and step mashings are out and, I suppose, overly complicated ingredient lists which are utilised using these methods.

Any recipe suggestions for my simplistic 'hot-end' set-up?

Robwalkeragain
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Re: Proven Pilsner Recipe Please

Post by Robwalkeragain » Tue Oct 29, 2019 2:09 pm

Pilsner malt and no chill is a no-go for me. Gonna be full of DMS with the extended heat time...

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Re: Proven Pilsner Recipe Please

Post by Cobnut » Tue Oct 29, 2019 2:29 pm

Why can you not put your boiled wort in your fermentation fridge set on cold to speed up the wort cooling? Obviously not as good as immersion chiller, CFC or plate chiller, but better than leaving it to cool at room or garage temperature.

Failing that, buy or make an immersion chiller. I made one from a length of 10mm copper pipe wound round a 1 gal demi-john and then fitted hoselock type fittings to both ends. Until I bought my GF with CFC, this was what I used. This time of year when ground water is cool/cold, it is pretty effective and it was not costly to make. Nor was it difficult.

As to pale European style beers, may I suggest a Munich Helles?

100% pilsner to about 1048 OG
(could use some acidulated malt to help with high res. alkalinity in your water. I did)
Hallertauer Mittelfrueh to about 20IBUs
Ferment with a suitable yeast (I used MJ Bohemian Lager yeast).

I fermented under approx. 15 psi pressure at 18/20/22 C for a day each and then a final few days at 24C, so fermentation was over within a week.
I then cold crashed at 0C for a few days and added gelatine to help clear it before leaving to lager for a few weeks at around 0C.

It was a lovely beer. Liked by lager and ale drinkers alike.

If you can't brew under pressure like this then you need to follow the "fast lager method" (http://brulosophy.com/methods/lager-method/).
Fermenting: "Hoppy" Kolsch
Conditioning:
Drinking: Lacons Patriot Clone, Mocha Stout, Single (allotment grown) hopped ale, Hazelweiss (8th edition), 'Ol 'Enry Brut IPA, Cherry Chocolate Dubbel Trubbel
Planning: Munich Helles, Black IPA, Keyworth mid-season SMaSH, Weizenbock (1100+ OG), etc. etc. etc.

Rookie
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Re: Proven Pilsner Recipe Please

Post by Rookie » Tue Oct 29, 2019 6:39 pm

If extract is an option you can make a pretty good pilsner with little to no boiling.
I'm just here for the beer.

Meatymc
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Re: Proven Pilsner Recipe Please

Post by Meatymc » Tue Oct 29, 2019 10:31 pm

Thanks for the replies guys..................
Robwalkeragain wrote:
Tue Oct 29, 2019 2:09 pm
Pilsner malt and no chill is a no-go for me. Gonna be full of DMS with the extended heat time...
Thanks for the steer - aware of DMS but not researched until now so see exactly where you're coming from. Might explain why I haven't been impressed with my previous efforts. Seems you can reduce the impact by boiling longer (or even using pale rather than pilsner malt although that seems to defeat the object to me) but that's then negated by my long cooling process.
Cobnut wrote:
Tue Oct 29, 2019 2:29 pm
Why can you not put your boiled wort in your fermentation fridge set on cold to speed up the wort cooling? Obviously not as good as immersion chiller, CFC or plate chiller, but better than leaving it to cool at room or garage temperature.

Failing that, buy or make an immersion chiller.
If you can't brew under pressure like this then you need to follow the "fast lager method" (http://brulosophy.com/methods/lager-method/).
It's a small fridge and the thought of trying to cool 21 litres might just be too much for it - given we're getting down to 0c temp's up here may well be as quick just leaving it outside over night.

I'm avoiding an immersion chiller simply because we're on a water meter and I'm loath to send god knows how much clean water round the chiller and then down the drain.

And finally, I did my last attempt using the brulosophy method but as Rob has pointed out I was on a sticky wicket to start with.
Rookie wrote:
Tue Oct 29, 2019 6:39 pm
If extract is an option you can make a pretty good pilsner with little to no boiling.

Never occured to me. The more I read on Rob's DMS steer the less I feel I can do a pilsner justice - extract may well be the way to go although much more research to do.

Cheers guys

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Re: Proven Pilsner Recipe Please

Post by Digby » Tue Oct 29, 2019 10:51 pm

Meatymc wrote:Thanks for the replies guys..................
Robwalkeragain wrote:
Tue Oct 29, 2019 2:09 pm
Pilsner malt and no chill is a no-go for me. Gonna be full of DMS with the extended heat time...
Thanks for the steer - aware of DMS but not researched until now so see exactly where you're coming from. Might explain why I haven't been impressed with my previous efforts. Seems you can reduce the impact by boiling longer (or even using pale rather than pilsner malt although that seems to defeat the object to me) but that's then negated by my long cooling process.
Cobnut wrote:
Tue Oct 29, 2019 2:29 pm
Why can you not put your boiled wort in your fermentation fridge set on cold to speed up the wort cooling? Obviously not as good as immersion chiller, CFC or plate chiller, but better than leaving it to cool at room or garage temperature.

Failing that, buy or make an immersion chiller.
If you can't brew under pressure like this then you need to follow the "fast lager method" (http://brulosophy.com/methods/lager-method/).
It's a small fridge and the thought of trying to cool 21 litres might just be too much for it - given we're getting down to 0c temp's up here may well be as quick just leaving it outside over night.

I'm avoiding an immersion chiller simply because we're on a water meter and I'm loath to send god knows how much clean water round the chiller and then down the drain.

And finally, I did my last attempt using the brulosophy method but as Rob has pointed out I was on a sticky wicket to start with.
Rookie wrote:
Tue Oct 29, 2019 6:39 pm
If extract is an option you can make a pretty good pilsner with little to no boiling.

Never occured to me. The more I read on Rob's DMS steer the less I feel I can do a pilsner justice - extract may well be the way to go although much more research to do.

Cheers guys
Hi matey,

Just to let you know, I use water butt water for my counterflow chiller and immersion chiller. I consider there is no realistic risk of contamination if I inspect the chiller and pipework to ensure no damage etc prior to use and stick to robust procedures. It means no mains water use!

Others may be horrified, but worked fine for me for the past few years.

Also worth considering that the cost in pence of running mains water to drain, garden or water butt will be very small. For me it was far more the environmental impact that led me to alternatives.

Matt

Sent from my SM-G955F using Tapatalk


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Re: Proven Pilsner Recipe Please

Post by ben034 » Wed Oct 30, 2019 11:04 am

It depends on your flow rate but I did a very rough calculation and figured it was about 40p to chill to pitching temp in the summer and less during winter (when I can get to pitching temps in around 10 mins) with a cheap immersion chiller. If no chill works for you obviously carry on but I wouldn't personally avoid using a chiller due to cost alone.

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Re: Proven Pilsner Recipe Please

Post by Meatymc » Wed Oct 30, 2019 12:15 pm

Digby wrote:
Tue Oct 29, 2019 10:51 pm
Just to let you know, I use water butt water for my counterflow chiller and immersion chiller.

Matt
ben034 wrote:
Wed Oct 30, 2019 11:04 am
It depends on your flow rate but I did a very rough calculation and figured it was about 40p to chill to pitching temp in the summer and less during winter (when I can get to pitching temps in around 10 mins) with a cheap immersion chiller. If no chill works for you obviously carry on but I wouldn't personally avoid using a chiller due to cost alone.
Cheers Matt/Ben

I did post on exactly that method Matt (water butt) a year or 2 ago but never got around to it. It's not the cost involved (although there would also be a chiller to make/buy and a pump) it's wasting water although given the back lawn has been practically under water for the past couple of weeks, maybe I should have a re-think.

The no chill method actually works well for me - brew day 1, pitch day 2 - as I do predominantly IPA's and bitters with the odd Porter now and then. I did back-to-back brews last Friday, pitched the 1st on Saturday and pitching the 2nd (sat ready to go in the cube/garage) a week tomorrow so it's fermenting whilst I'm away for a week. It's this damned pilsner/lager that's got me looking at things again

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Re: Proven Pilsner Recipe Please

Post by Cobnut » Wed Oct 30, 2019 2:04 pm

I get the point about water usage; it's an issue in beer production. IIRC the most efficient breweries use around 2L of water for every 1L of beer produced, but at our scale I suspect it's nearer 5-6L per 1L. Or maybe even higher.

I've already said that I use the GF CFC to cool my wort and certainly some of the water goes straight down the drain, but I collect as much of the initial cooling water as it is 30C+ and serves very well for cleaning the GF after I've brewed.

I figure that if I can collect a good proportion, I'm saving in two ways: firstly water I would otherwise have to draw from the tap to do my cleaning (this is 40L+) & secondly the water I draw from the tap needs to be heated for at least the first cleaning cycle, whereas the saved water is already a good deal warmer than the water from the (cold) tap and so needs less heating (saving electricity).

The cost of heating the water to clean brewing equipment probably costs more than the water for cooling the wort. Water costs approx. 0.1p per L.

I estimate that I use 60L or so to cool a GF worth of wort. Let's call it a 100L. So that's 10p.

Heating 30L of boil from ground water temperature (say 15C in winter - I live in the South ;-) ) to boil temperature and then holding it there for an hour, plus heating 10L+ of sparge water to 75C requires a great deal more than 10p worth of electricity!

I usually manage to keep 35-40L of the cooling water which is usually 30-35C. I then heat this to 60C in the GF for the cleaning cycle. That probably saves me more in electricity than I'd save in water costs by not chilling the wort.

And the beer benefits from the wort being chilled.

At least that's my thinking.

But you pays your money and takes your choice!

Happy brewing!
Fermenting: "Hoppy" Kolsch
Conditioning:
Drinking: Lacons Patriot Clone, Mocha Stout, Single (allotment grown) hopped ale, Hazelweiss (8th edition), 'Ol 'Enry Brut IPA, Cherry Chocolate Dubbel Trubbel
Planning: Munich Helles, Black IPA, Keyworth mid-season SMaSH, Weizenbock (1100+ OG), etc. etc. etc.

Meatymc
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Re: Proven Pilsner Recipe Please

Post by Meatymc » Wed Oct 30, 2019 2:16 pm

All fair comments and I do agree all would be better cooling rapidly - I'm just trying to get the best results I can with what I've got and what I've got, and when and how I do it, clearly doesn't best suit this style.

More research me thinks!

Robwalkeragain
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Re: Proven Pilsner Recipe Please

Post by Robwalkeragain » Wed Oct 30, 2019 2:36 pm

There are better malts to use for lager if you want to no chill. “Extra Pale Malt” by Crisp is somewhere between english and pilsner malts in terms of modification, as is Vienna, and both are much less prone to DMS while retaining light flavour and colour so might be worth a go.
You could always bung a kit on of course, just to appease them!

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Re: Proven Pilsner Recipe Please

Post by TheSumOfAllBeers » Wed Oct 30, 2019 3:00 pm

I have made good lagers with No Chill. The extended heating does not automatically guarantee it to be full of DMS:

I just sourced some good malt (Weyerman bohemian pilsner) and did a 90 minute boil.

In terms of good pilsner recipes, you are talking about german pilsner and czech pilsner.
Done well these are great beers. A german pilsner will be drier, and have a big contribution from noble hop character. A czech pilsner will have a significant malt backbone, and gets a lot of character from the Saaz hops.

Maltwise, just get the best pils malt you can source for either of them. The german pilsner can be all pils malt, but the czech one will benefit from something to beef up the malt character, add in 1-2% of the grist with light melanoidin malt, or anything that contains melanoidins. It will get you into the flavour ballpark. Hops wise as above.

Also if you want to cheat a bit, try the recipes above, but ferment them with the Ubbe Kveik yeast available from WHC Labs:
https://www.themaltmiller.co.uk/product/whc-ubbe-kveik/
https://whclab.com/collections/homebrew ... 8425994318

This strain is super clean, and will get you close to a lager like quality (have yet to do side by sides). It will also work well as your first attempt at chilling if you go down that route (I recently switched to an IC, and this yeast only requires that you get down to 35C or so).

But your beer will be ready super quick, and you will get a good preview of what it would be like before switching to a lager strain. I have been meaning to do a czech pils with it, with some good pils malt and melanoidin as above, and shed load of saaz.

Meatymc
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Re: Proven Pilsner Recipe Please

Post by Meatymc » Thu Oct 31, 2019 11:51 am

Spent a while reading up on DMS etc and ways to reduce it's impact given my set-up and frankly, I'm beginning to understand why I haven't been impressed with previous attempts.

Rapid chilling is obviously key if I want to go down the all grain route with this (although I take your point Rob as regards kits). And of course if I can find a 'palatable' solution it would become my go-to for all my brews. I'll need some help on the equipment front so will be posting in the relevant section shortly.

Thanks for all your input

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Re: Proven Pilsner Recipe Please

Post by Northern Brewer » Thu Oct 31, 2019 12:58 pm

Worth mentioning that Ubbe is probably the same as Bootleg's Oslo, which has been discussed a fair bit in this HBT thread :
https://www.homebrewtalk.com/forum/thre ... lo.664102/

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Re: Proven Pilsner Recipe Please

Post by mozza » Thu Oct 31, 2019 2:21 pm

Water treatment will go a long way. Everything is on show in a lager flavour wise. No hiding behind big hop additions.
Cheers and gone,

Mozza

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