Helles

Light Lager, CAP / CACA, Pilsner, Dark Lager, Amber Lager, Bock etc

Helles

Postby Good Ed » Mon Apr 07, 2014 22:11

This is one of my favourite beers.

This recipe from one of Jamil's podcasts. Helles is a light malty lager balanced by a delicate hop flavour.

23L ; 74% efficiency
4630g Pilsner malt (94%)
236g Munich I (4.8%
59g Melanoidin (1.2%)
37g Hallertau Hersbrucker 4.13% AA at 60mins
mash 90mins at 66C; boil 90mins
WLP830 German Lager Yeast
OG 1049; FG 1010; ABV 5.07%; IBU (Rager) 19.1; EBC 7.7
CaCO3 to 30ppm; Ca to 150ppm with CaCl

Here's to the man who drinks strong ale,
and goes to bed quite mellow.
Lives as he ought to live,
and dies a jolly good fellow.
- Old English folk song
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Helles

Postby donny70 » Mon Apr 07, 2014 22:14

Great, I've been looking for a recipe :)

What temp does it need to be brewed at and does it need much in the lines of lagering?
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Re: Helles

Postby Good Ed » Mon Apr 07, 2014 22:44

Well, Jamil is a great believer in pitching cool 7C, I just try and get it as cool as possible to pitch and ferment at 10-12C. You need to pitch a big starter, 450bn cells. I'm a bit of a heathen as I don't do a diacetyl rest or don't often lager, but I do have the benefit of a cellar to store my beers where this one stays for a couple of months before drinking.

Here's to the man who drinks strong ale,
and goes to bed quite mellow.
Lives as he ought to live,
and dies a jolly good fellow.
- Old English folk song
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Re: Helles

Postby donny70 » Tue Apr 08, 2014 09:42

7c will be achievable as I just scored a small fridge and controller.
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Re: Helles

Postby donny70 » Sun Apr 13, 2014 13:46

The fridge is holding nice at 8C. My efficiency was better than anticipated so had to bring it back to 5% by shoving in an extra 2 litres of water. All good though :)
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Re: Helles

Postby Good Ed » Sun Apr 13, 2014 13:57

very good, I'd bring it up to 10C over the next 24-48 hours and keep it there for 3 weeks and no peeking. what are you planning to do with the beer, apart from the obvious that is ;)

Here's to the man who drinks strong ale,
and goes to bed quite mellow.
Lives as he ought to live,
and dies a jolly good fellow.
- Old English folk song
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Re: Helles

Postby donny70 » Sun Apr 13, 2014 22:08

Well this is the first lager I've brewed so I thought I'd do it properly. 3 stage mash and proper ferment and lagering. I'm planning a doppelbock next. Just wanted to see how good it will come out.
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Re: Helles

Postby Good Ed » Sun Apr 13, 2014 22:14

So if you are lagering you need a vessel with minimum headspace to transfer to, and do this to a secondary vessel 5 points above your FG so you get a layer of CO2 on your beer.

Here's to the man who drinks strong ale,
and goes to bed quite mellow.
Lives as he ought to live,
and dies a jolly good fellow.
- Old English folk song
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Re: Helles

Postby donny70 » Mon Apr 14, 2014 04:04

I'm using 15L barrels for brewing at the moment so there won't be much space in there :D
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Re: Helles

Postby Mark » Tue Apr 15, 2014 16:26

What would you need to get the yeast count big enough for this? I don't have a stir plate or anything... would a vial of liquid yeast into a starter, give a few days, and pitch the slurry be ok, or would you have to put the slurry in another, bigger starter and repeat the process?

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Re: Helles

Postby Good Ed » Tue Apr 15, 2014 16:45

Mark wrote:What would you need to get the yeast count big enough for this? I don't have a stir plate or anything... would a vial of liquid yeast into a starter, give a few days, and pitch the slurry be ok, or would you have to put the slurry in another, bigger starter and repeat the process?


I don't have a stir plate, but this is what I do to get about 400-450bn cells for a lager. I use a 5l demijohn and swirl it around as often as I can. For this I start 2 weeks before brewday. Take your original vial and use 200gDME & 2L water for the starter, I boil for 15 mins and then cool before adding the yeast, once this has finished chill for 1 day, pour off the spent wort, add some cooled boiled water to mix, split x 2 and put one in the fridge for storage. Do another 2L starter with the other, again chill and decant, then put this in a 4.5L starter, 450gDME & 4.5L water, chill, decant on brewday and add some cooled boiled wort from half way through the boil, and this will be raring to go when you want to pitch.

I would then repeat the process for the next brew, but I would usually start with fresh vials each year.

Here's to the man who drinks strong ale,
and goes to bed quite mellow.
Lives as he ought to live,
and dies a jolly good fellow.
- Old English folk song
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Re: Helles

Postby Mark » Tue Apr 15, 2014 18:59

That's great advice, thanks...

I'd probably only make a lager every few months, so could I miss out on the splitting in 2 and miss out one of the steps? This would then 2L starter with the vial, then a 4L starter to finish?

How long do you typically leave it between steps? I'm assuming 3-4 days before cooling for another day?

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Re: Helles

Postby Bad 'Ed » Tue Apr 15, 2014 19:18

What are the approx timescales with this? I'd love to brew one for my brother's wedding in October as we lived in Munich together for a bit.
Do you need to lager and condition or are they effectively doing the same job?

Never enough time....
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Re: Helles

Postby Good Ed » Tue Apr 15, 2014 21:42

Ok, this is just my process and there are various ways, but it works for me. So if you start with 1 vial and a 2L starter allow 2-3 days to ferment & 1 day to chill, then for a 4.5L starter allow 4-5 days to ferment and 1 day to chill. Keep starters at 18-24C including lager yeasts, remember you are propagating yeast cells not making beer, and 22C strikes a good balance of health and efficient propagation of both lager and ale yeasts.

Here's to the man who drinks strong ale,
and goes to bed quite mellow.
Lives as he ought to live,
and dies a jolly good fellow.
- Old English folk song
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Re: Helles

Postby Good Ed » Tue Apr 15, 2014 21:51

Bad 'Ed wrote:Do you need to lager and condition or are they effectively doing the same job?


Not really, but I don't lager that often as I only have 1 fridge for brewing. If you pitch big and ferment at 10C with WLP830 I find that I don't have any diacetyl, and I will then bottle after 3 weeks, I then keep in a cool cellar for 2-3 months, with the occasional sample ;) and it turns out great. If I get another fridge I would lager like this, transfer to a secondary 5 points above FG, ideally this vessel should have minimal headspace, it also needs an airlock, then lager for 6 weeks at 1C. For bottling, to be on the safe side you should introduce a small amount of yeast saved from one of your starters when priming, although I have also lagered and not had any problems with carbing.

Here's to the man who drinks strong ale,
and goes to bed quite mellow.
Lives as he ought to live,
and dies a jolly good fellow.
- Old English folk song
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Re: Helles

Postby Mark » Wed Apr 16, 2014 13:38

Good Ed wrote:Ok, this is just my process and there are various ways, but it works for me. So if you start with 1 vial and a 2L starter allow 2-3 days to ferment & 1 day to chill, then for a 4.5L starter allow 4-5 days to ferment and 1 day to chill. Keep starters at 18-24C including lager yeasts, remember you are propagating yeast cells not making beer, and 22C strikes a good balance of health and efficient propagation of both lager and ale yeasts.


Thanks... can I ask though, after you have done the 4.5L starter and chilled, can you keep it in the fridge for a few weeks before pitching, or does it need to be used quickly?

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Re: Helles

Postby Good Ed » Wed Apr 16, 2014 20:50

Mark wrote:Thanks... can I ask though, after you have done the 4.5L starter and chilled, can you keep it in the fridge for a few weeks before pitching, or does it need to be used quickly?


No you would use it straight away, a couple of days is fine, but really you need to gear your starter preparation to your brewday. Keeping vials and split's from your starters are fine kept in the fridge, viability does decrease over time, but you can still use them to grow a fresh starter.

Here's to the man who drinks strong ale,
and goes to bed quite mellow.
Lives as he ought to live,
and dies a jolly good fellow.
- Old English folk song
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Re: Helles

Postby Bad 'Ed » Mon Apr 28, 2014 22:35

Good Ed wrote:WLP830 German Lager Yeast


Just out of interest, why not the WLP860 Munich Helles Yeast?

Never enough time....
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Re: Helles

Postby Good Ed » Mon Apr 28, 2014 22:47

Bad 'Ed wrote:
Good Ed wrote:WLP830 German Lager Yeast


Just out of interest, why not the WLP860 Munich Helles Yeast?


It was a recipe from The Jamil Show and he recommended WLP830, which tastes great and saw no reason to change. I've also done the same recipe with WLP810 as I have a cellar that is ideal for this yeast in the summer, still tasted great. I'm sure WLP860 will also be great, however it is a seasonal offering so supply is limited.

Here's to the man who drinks strong ale,
and goes to bed quite mellow.
Lives as he ought to live,
and dies a jolly good fellow.
- Old English folk song
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