Homebrew: Strange Attractor

Submitted by DM on Thu, 05/01/2017 - 22:41

Every winter for the last few years I've brewed a lager as it is relatively easy to brew in a garage or other cold area & raise the temperature to lager fermentation temperature - around 12-15°.   These (here & here for example) have been amongst my best beers.

A strange attractor is a pattern that a chaotic system tends to form into given time.

Mash: 1 hour 10 mins starting at 67°C & allowed to fall seadily to 62°C at the end.

2 Kg Vienna Malt EBC 3

2 Kg Pilsner Malt EBC 3

The sparge water was kept separate & a 2nd beer was made from it called Something From Nothing.

Boil: 1 hour

30g Motueka hop pellets (alpha acid 6.8%) added 35 mins from the end

30g Motueka added 20 mins from the end

40g Motueka added 10 mins from the end

10g Irish Moss added 10 mins from the end

The wort was cooled using a simple wort chiller to around 18°C.   The Saflager S-23 yeast was hydrated & started with a little sugar while the brewing liquor was coming up to temperature.   The yeast was pitched into the fermenting vessel, then the cool wort splashed onto it through two colanders to aerate it.

15 litres of wort were collected in the fermentation vessel.   The OG was 1.050 & FG was 1.008 - which should give me a beer of around 5.5% alcohol.

Bottled after a total of 10 days (7 days at 15°C, 2 days at 19°C & 36 hours at around 3°C). 

Verdict on bottling: a very soft mouthfeel, fruity hopped beer that's very pale & almost clear already.   Just a trace of buttery diacetyl left, but this should vanish as the beer ages.

The bottles haven't gassed up - I use PET bottles so can feel the carbonation process progress - after a week at room temperature.   The time spent in the cold to help clear the beer may have not left enough yeast cells in suspension to metabolise the sugar in this period.   I'll just leave these for a while longer for what little yeast is left to have time to carbonate the beer.

Must learn to leave this alone for a few weeks before opening any!   The aniticpation that it might be a s good as some previous lagers is too much.

Carbonated up nicely, but I'd prefer a little more CO2.   It's still got a little diacetyl butterscotch taste, but not much.   This should diminish with age.   Still some sweetness present, which should dissapear since the mash temperature was set to produce a dry beer.

I must have patience!