Saturday, 20 October 2018

1929 Bohemian Lagerbier

A little divergence here from my usual UK fare. A foreign recipe. And a Lager one at that.

As you can probably guess by the lack of brewery name, this recipe isn't taken from a brewing record. Instead it's one I've assembled from information found in technical brewing publications. I can't remember which one off the top of my head. But I'm pretty sure it was in German.

This is the type of beer usually associated with the Czech Republic: a Pale Lager of around 5% ABV.

I could also call this by its Czech name, Světlý Ležák, though that is rather harder for most to pronounce. It literally translates as Pale Lagerbier.

The mashing scheme, a triple decoction, is pretty damn complicated. I doubt I could be arsed to go through the process myself. Very time consuming. I’m not going to get involved in any argument about whether there’s any point to decoction mashing with modern malts. I’ll leave that to the experts.

The key to this type of beer is good quality, very pale, two-row barley and good Czech hops. Not complicated, is it? Followed by three months lagering at about 1º C. Should produce a lovely drinking beer (as opposed to a stare at and sip beer).

1929 Bohemian Lagerbier 
pilsner malt 2 row 10.75 lb 100.00%
Saaz 120 mins 1.00 oz
Saaz 90 mins 1.00 oz
Saaz 45 mins 2.00 oz
OG 1048
FG 1012
ABV 4.76
Apparent attenuation 75.00%
IBU 52
Mash triple decoction
Boil time 120 minutes
pitching temp 41º F
Yeast WLP800 Pilsner Lager

This and about three dozen other Lager recipes, can be found in my book Let's Brew!


Mike Hoover said...

Funny I have this one bookmarked in my copy of your book. I was recently discussing decoction with a local brewer. We both agreed there is something magic about it. My first decoction several months ago was not planned. I missed horribly my temp on a step infusion through a miscalculation and, with no more room in the mash tun for more hot water, I opted to do my very first decoction to get enough thermal mass to raise the mash temp to the next rest. Success! And I gained 5 gravity points in the process. I can't wait to do a triple decoction. Cheers!

InSearchOfKnowledge said...

The kind of beer that Michael Jackson showed in his TV series. I found that such a fantastic moment when I saw that on television. I have always found, even since I was a child, that the beers (pintjes) served in Belgian cafés looked so underwhelming(? can't seem to find the right word). And when saw MJ pour that beer out of the lager cask, with its enormous foam head, on which a coin would float, that was the moment when I realized, that is how beer should be.

Barm said...

Brewers often seem wedded to the mashing regime they have been brought up with, whatever it is. German brewers will still faithfully perform a stepped mash as prescribed by Kunze, even when brewing an IPA. Some American brewers try to brew every style in the world with a simple infusion mash.

Rob said...

I have triple decocted. It is a pain in the ass. However, I **think** I can taste a difference, and that is why I still do it.