Time to brew a big lager beer. It’s gonna be a cold brew day at the farm with highs expected to be in the single digits, making for some new challenges.

20 gallon batch, double decoction

Grain Bill-

  • 20# Pilsner, DE
  • 20# Munich, DE
  • 10# Vienna, DE
  • 5# Wheat


  • 6 ounce of A-B hops.
  • Note- I’ll use the hops I got at A-B. It’s hard to judge how much to use. It looks like these hops are 10-20 years old. If they lose a percent every year, these would all be useless. I went through and smelled all the hops and found the least offensive. I believe these are labeled, ”96/001/024” At 6.59% I’ll need about 5 ounces for 20 gallons, but as old as these are, I will throw in an extra ounce or more. After further review, my plan is to count these hops at  5% which is typical of Hallertau, and I think these are a Hallertau strain.  I’ll use 6 ounce, which if my Alpha is correct, puts me right in the middle of where I want to be and still have a tolerance of +/-1% Alpha.

Yeast- Charles is brewing a Maibock the week before I brew this beer. I’ll use his healthy yeast cake of  Wyeast Private collection 2487- Hella Bock Lager.

Water- I have never used the tap water at the farm for brewing. The chlorine smell has always turned me off, but having done some research, I feel like it’s time to run an experiment. Campden tablets not only eliminate chlorine but chloramine as well. 1 tablet for 20 gallons should do it.

Calculated stats-

  • OG = 1.077
  • FG = 1.019
  • IBU = 21
  • SRM = 8
  • ABV 8%

Sad Notes- What a mess this turned out to be. Dickie and I broke the cardinal rule of no drinking before the boil. He severely burned his hand when we tried to move a full 20g of boiling sparge water. We had no sparge and a thick concentrate of cloudy wort went straight into the fermenter. I failed to get an OG but it clearly soared above 1.100. A month later I tried to keg the 10g we had and the gravity was at 1.054, so clearly we made beer but clearly it had a long way to go to be any good. Additionally it was as thick as gravy and sweet enough to be a candy bar. I seriously doubt that a long lager will save this beer, but it’s resting at the farm nonetheless.

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