Wednesday, 4 March 2020

Let's Brew Wednesday - 1896 Munich Lagerbier

Dark Lagerbier was the staple of Munich in the 19th century. Though this beer dates from just about when that was starting to change.

Until the 1890’s, the Munich brewers had refused to brew Pale Lager. They worried it would devalue their brand. The city was so renowned for beers on the dark side, that it gave its name to a dark style: Münchener.

Though things were a bit vaguer back then. Any Lager brewed in Munich was likely to be called a Münchener, though now the name is associated with a beer of Lagerbier or Export strength. Come to think of it, it’s odd that this is called Lagerbier as it’s really at Märzen strength, being 14.5º Plato. I guess they had different ideas back then.

This is a description of the Munich method, taken from "Handbuch der Chemischen Technologie: Die Bierbrauerei" by Dr. Fr. Jul. Otto, published in 1865, pages 120 to 122.

For 100 pounds of malt, 800 pounds of water are used. [Not sure what sort of pounds. I would assume around 1 pound = 0.5 kg.]

Half to two-thirds of the water is cold and used to dough in. The rest is brought to the boil in the kettle. After doughing in, the mash is left to rest for 3 or 4 hours. If warm water is used for doughing in, the mash should not be left to rest.

When the water has boiled it is added to the mash. The temperature should rise to 30-37.5º C.

When this temperature has been reached, about a third of the thicker part of the mash is transferred to the kettle and boiled for 30 minutes. (Boiling the first thick mash.)

The thick mash  is returned to the mash tun and mashed for 15 minutes, so that the thinner and thicker parts completely separate. The temperature should now be 45-50º C.

As soon as this is finished a third of the mash, again the thicker part, is transferred to the kettle and boiled for 30 minutes. (Second thick mash.)

The second thick mash  is returned to the mash tun and mashed. The temperature should now be 60-62.5º C.

Now a portion of the thin mash is transferred to the kettle (enough to raise the temperature of the mash to 75º C when returned to the mash tun) and boiled for 15 minutes. (Lauter mash.)

The Lauter mash is returned to the mash tun and there's another round of mashing. The temperature should now be 75º C. The mash is left to rest for 90 minutes.

After the wort has been drawn off, more water is brought to the boil (30 - 60 pounds for 100 pounds of grain) and poured over the grains. The resulting wort is either added to the main wort or used to make Nachbier (Small Beer), which in Munich is called Scheps.

1896 Munich Lagerbier
Munich malt 20L 14.00 lb 100.00%
Hallertau 60 mins 2.50 oz
OG 1058
FG 1022
ABV 4.76
Apparent attenuation 62.07%
IBU 33
SRM 19
Mash Munich method
Boil time 90 minutes
pitching temp 48º F
Yeast WLP830 German Lager

The above is one of the many recipes in my book Let's Brew!

And I've recently created a Kindle version of the book.

1 comment:

StuartP said...

It doesn't matter what sort of 'pounds' you use (or even kilos) as long as you stay consistent. The full decoction mash is such a schlep, but you have to do it from time to time.