Hänsel und Gretel

July 2, 2017

Charles and Andy are proud to announce the brewing of twins, Hänsel und Gretel.

Hänsel, the boy, is a Dortmunder Export. Gretel, the girl, is a Munich Helles.

Why twins? These were meant to be two different beers. But after yeast troubles, (desired strains not available and starter issues), we realized that our recipes were very close to each other. The only big difference is a little bit of malt. During delivery of Gretel, Andy decided to add some of his fresh honey to the boil which will boost the gravity and alcohol content while lightening the body. Hopefully this will help differentiate these two beers. In a perfect world, Andy would have used Munich Helles yeast and I would have used Danish Lager, what I used last year for the Dort, but I have been told that strain is no longer offered. We both settled for Bavarian Lager (2206).

Serving Hänsel and Gretel at Oktoberfest should be interesting. Hopefully there will be enough of a difference and we can get some specific feedback.

Brew day was fast and mostly uneventful. Andy served biscuits and his honey in the morning and street tacos for lunch. We need to brew at his place more often.


Hänsel – Dortmunder Export 2017

This beer from Dortmund is a pale lager influenced by the golden beer from Pilsen known as Pilsner, though is mainly labelled as Dortmunder Export. Like all other pale lagers the beer is a pale gold colour, with a moderate bitterness from the noble hops, a lean, well attenuated body, and a crisp carbonation. Brewers use less hops to avoid the harsh hop notes, giving the beers a subtle emphasis on the malt flavours.

Malt Bill

  • 13 lbs. Barke Pilsner
  • 3 lbs. Munich
  • 1 lb. White Wheat
  • .5 lb. Crystal 40

Hop Bill

  • 2 oz. Spalt 3.8% – 60 mins.
  • 1 oz. Tradition 6% – 60 mins.
  • 1 oz. Hallertau 3.8% – 30 mins.


  • yWeast 2206 Bavarian Lager

Calculated Stats

  • OG – 1.05
  • IBU – 28
  • SRM – 5.3
  • FG – 1.009
  • ABV – 5.3%

Mash Schedule

Mash in – 5.5 gal. at 160˚ – Step temp. 148˚ hold 75 mins.

Mash out – 3.5 gal. at 203˚ – Step temp. 148˚ hold 10 mins.

Fly Sparge with 6 gal. at 168˚

Collected 13 gallons wort. Temperatures and times were spot on. Achieved boil by 9:55 am.

Boil got away from me. WAY TOO HOT. This burner rocks. Boiled off more than I wanted.

Hop Schedule

  • 2 oz. Spalt 3.8% – 60 mins.
  • 1 oz. Tradition 6% – 60 mins.
  • 1 oz. Hallertau 3.8% – 30 mins.

Irish Moss

Yeast Nutrient

Chiller on at 10:55 am.

Chilled to 84˚.

Removed chiller. Long whirlpool and a long settle.

Transfered to fermenter at 1:10 pm.

Final quantity in fermenter 10 gallons.

After finishing Andy’s beer, sat around drinking and talking.

Cleaned up and transported Hänsel to my house. Placed in refrigerator and let cool all night. Took sample and pitched yeast Monday morning.

OG – 1.048 – a bit low but I am fine with that.

Slow start on fermentation. Not much activity Monday night. Tuesday morning things looking better. Fridge temp 48˚. Trying to warm it up to low to mid 50˚s.

Aug. 1 2017

Dortmunder (Hansel) has come along nicely. After lagering in refrigerator at approx. 35˚, racked 5 gallons to keg. OG = 1.009 – ABV = 5.12%.

To the other 5 gallons, I added 5 lbs. of peeled, chopped, heated, frozen peaches. Broke up the frozen mass as much as I could. Will sit at room temp in the hopes the additional sugars will kick of another fermentation. Will give it a few days before going back in the refrigerator to sit until closer to Oktoberfest.

Aug. 12 2017

Racked the Peach Dort to keg. What a bloody mess. Fearing I was going to have a problem with peach stuff getting into the keg, I would rack to bottling bucket first. Hopefully the peach stuff that does make it into the bucket will settle before transferring into the keg. Spigot on fermenter blocked up right away. Switched to auto-siphon. Did good until the liquid got low which just concentrated the peach bits and mush. Now what? I scooped out as much stuff as I could with a sanitized stainless steel strainer. Helped a little but the remaining beer is just full of peach stuff. Only thing left to do was to sanitize a mesh hop bag and stretch it across the top of the bucket and secure it with two bungee cords. I slowly poured the remaining contents into the bag which strained out most of the crud.

The beer itself tastes very good. Very peachy. When this is carbonated and served nice and cold, it should be a big hit. Especially with the chicks.

Will have to rethink this process for next time.


Gretel – Munich Helles 

When the golden and clean lagers of Plzen (Bohemia) became all the rage in the mid-1800’s, München brewers feared that Germans would start drinking the Czech beer vs. their own. Munich Helles Lager was their answer to meet the demand. A bit more malty, they often share the same spicy hop characters of Czech Pils, but are a bit more subdued and in balance with malts. “Helles” is German for “bright.”

Malt Bill

  • 18 lbs. Pilsner
  • 2.25 lbs. Vienna
  • 1.25 lb. Carapils
  • .75 lb. Munich
  • 1 lb. Honey

Hop Bill

  • 3 oz. Hallertauer Mittelfruh ?% – 60 mins.
  • 1 oz. Perle ?% – 15 mins.


  • yWeast 2206 Bavarian Lager

Calculated Stats

  • OG – 1.054
  • IBU – 22
  • SRM – 5
  • FG – 1.013
  • ABV – 5.3%

Mash Schedule

Not all that different than than the Dortmunder. Andy will have to provide details.

Honey added in last half of the boil.

As expected, a slow start on fermentation. Tuesday morning seeing more activity. Fridge temp. 53˚.

Measured OG unavailable but probably darn close to calculated (1.054).








1 thought on “Hänsel und Gretel

  1. Interesting that you feel these beers will be similar. I’ve shared that sentiment with the Bauhaus and other German beers. The differences are subtle. I’m wondering just how different the Bauhaus will be from the Oktoberfest and with the Dort, we thought last year it would be similar to the Oktoberfest. Now we’re adding the Helles as another similar beer. They will all be slightly different, but in many ways, that’s German beer.

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