Duke’s Dunkel


A few months ago I was at Ferguson Brewing Company and tried their Munich Dunkel. I loved it. I thought it was one of the best local beers I have had. That day I decided that I would brew a Munich Dunkel for this years Oktoberfest instead of the Altbier. It’s good to change things up sometimes. After much research, I settled on a recipe that is fittingly heavy on the Munich malts. I ordered all Weyermann malts form Germany. We have a surplus of hops from the guy at the Brewminati meeting, including plenty of Hallertauer from the Busch family hop farm in Munich Germany. I rounded the recipe out with Wyeast 2206 – Bavarian Lager yeast. The yeast is a long story in itself. Long story short, after reading that when you ferment cold, like you would with a lager, you should pitch more yeast than for an ale. After splitting the yeast, I decided to not take the chance and bought another yeast pack. If I started the yeast starter earlier, I could have avoided this. Problems. Everything was going great until I took a pre-boil gravity. I screwed this up and thought our gravity was way too low. That reading was wrong and after the boil ended up with a gravity that was too high. Still, the wort looks and tastes great. If I don’t screw up the lager fermentation, this should be a wonderful addition to Oktoberfest.

Duke’s Dunkel photo gallery

July 26, 2015

  • Charles
  • Alan
  • Rob
  • Dickie
  • Tom
  • Andy
  • Duke

Munich Dunkel (Dark Lager 4B) – 10 gallon Dukesdunkel1

Grain Bill (all Weyermann malts from Germany)

  • 14 lbs. Munich II
  • 5 lbs. Vienna
  • 3 lbs. 8 oz. Munich I
  • 1 lb. 4 oz. Carafa II

Hop Bill

  • 1 oz. Hallertauer leaf 4.8% – 75 mins.
  • 1 oz. Perle pellet 8.1% – 75 mins.
  • 1 oz. Hallertauer leaf 4.8% – 15 mins.


  • Wyeast 2206 Bavarian Lager – Used by many German breweries to produce rich, full-bodied, malty beers, this strain is a good choice for bocks and doppelbocks. A thorough diacetyl rest is recommended after fermentation is complete.

Mash Schedule

  • Mash in – 7.5 gallons @ 130˚
  • Protein Rest- hold 122˚ for 30 minutes
  • Heat to 152˚
  • Saccharification – hold 152˚ for 45 minutes
  • Heat to 168˚
  • Mash Out – hold 168˚ for 10 minutes


  • Vorlauf – 10 minutes – wort cleared quick, looks good.
  • Fly Sparge with 11 gallons at 160˚
  • Collected 14 gallons wort


  • Total 90 minutes
  • 1 oz. Hallertauer leaf 4.8% – 75 mins.
  • 1 oz. Perle pellet 8.1% – 75 mins.
  • 1 oz. Hallertauer leaf 4.8% – 15 mins.
  • 3 tabs Irish Moss
  • Pre-chill with immersion chiller

Move to kitchen, gravity feed to fermenter via Therminator. Would like to have gotten colder before pitching lager yeast. Estimated volume 12 gallons.

OG = 1.062 (estimated 1.052) 😦

Fermentation Since this is a lager that needs to ferment at cooler temperatures than ales, I spent the week before testing a temperature controller on the basement beer fridge. Seems to be working very well.


Fermentation was very active Sunday night. Everything I read said to not put in cooler fermentation until yeast got active which could take up to 48 hours. Did it get active right away because the temperature was too warm? Decided to go ahead and move to beer fridge Sunday night around 10 pm. Temperature range for this yeast is 46˚ to 58˚ F. Am currently holding at approx. 51˚ (temp outside fermenter). The beer will be a bit warmer due to the fermentation process.

Sunday August 3

All seems to be going as planned. Temperature is holding well. I open the door to the fridge a few times a day to vent the gasses and check temperature from glass of water on top of fermenter. Too bad we can’t fit one of our big fermenters in this fridge.

Saturday August 8 – pm

13 days in Primary

Checked gravity – 1.03

Took fermenter out of refrigerator to begin Diacetyl Rest. Room temperature is holding at 69˚-70˚.

Monday August 10 – pm

Checked gravity – 1.022

Racked to secondary. Quantity is approx. 9.5 gallons.

Samples tastes very good. No diacetyl detected (but I have never been very good at picking this out of beer samples). ABV is calculating to 5.25%.

Fermenter placed back in refrigerator. Temperature set to 60˚. Will drop temperature a few degrees every day or two until lagering temperature is reached (approx. 35˚ unless someone convinces me otherwise). Will hold there until mid September and keg for Oktoberfest on September 26.

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