Monday, January 5, 2009


What is an Awktoberfest? It's really an Octoberfest brewed for the wrong season. It's a bit awkward, so this is the name I give it. And in this case, for the Spring. Some friends find it to be a bit of a problem that this beer is being brewed for my enjoyment in the wrong season, but I love the style and can't really picture the Spring of 2009 without it. So, I did it. Yesterday, it was brewed, and today it ferments!

My intention to brew this style comes from a few vantage points. First, I only had one import Octoberfest on draft (& no bottles) this past year, which is simply far too few. Also, I haven't brewed a style like this since two years ago, which was a wonderful Munich Dunkel with almost 100% Munich malt. And, it has an interesting mix of pale malts, and I'm dying to know what it will taste like.

I have no idea how this will turn out. I imagine it will be somewhat sweet, but there is enough bittering hops to make it moderately bitter. I like the clean bitterness in most true Octoberfest styles, and hope mine will resemble that. Telling from the taste in the Copper Lager 3, there is a decent amount of diacetyl coming from this yeast strain. This could be due in part by the long lag time of almost 2 full days. I hope this brew doesn't get all buttery, and I'll try out a solid diacetyl rest, and then keep it in primary as the temp goes down.


6.00 lb. Vienna Malt
1.75 lb. Munich Dark
1.00 lb. Munich Light
2.00 lb. Pilsener Malt
0.50 lb. Ger. CaraHell
0.50 lb. CaraMunich
0.75 lb. CaraPils

2.0 oz. Hallertau, 3.9%, pellet, 90min
.75 oz. Hallertau Select, 1.5%, pellet, 15min

Wyeast 2633: Octoberfest Lager Blend yeast cake

Brew Day Stats

Brewed: 1/4/09
Racked: 1/11/09
Bottled & Kegged: 3/13/09

Water Adjustment:
Strike: 1 tsp CaCl, .5 tsp Chalk, .75 Acid Blend
2nd Sparge: .5 tsp CaCl, .25 tsp Kosher Salt

H2O/Grain Ratio: 1.2 qt/lb
Mash Ph: 5.1-5.2
Sacch. Rest Temp/Time: 153°F/60min
Mash Out Temp/Time: 165°F/vorlauf
1st Batch Vol/SG: 3.7/1.068

2nd Batch Sparge H2OTemp/MashTemp: 184°F/171°F
2nd Batch Vol/SG: 3.65/1.028

Pre-Boil Vol: 7.25 gallons
Pre-Boil SG: 1.047
Boil Time: 90+min
Post-Boil Vol: 5.8ish gallons
Mash Efficiency: 76%

OG: 1.058
IBU: 29
Color/SRM: Orange/11
Ferment Temp: 50°F

FG: 1.017
ABW: 4.3%
ABV: 5.37%

1. It's become the 79 Degree about it here.
2. At racking, it smelled and tasted decent. There is hope yet.
3. The SG at racking was a tad high (1.017), and another week with yeast agitation would have been better, but it's sitting pretty darn cold right now, and until I get around to it in another month or two.


Ben said...

Hey I have no problem with you brewing that beer out of season. I love octoberfests! You will have to keep us posted on how it turns out.

SeƱor Brew™ said...

I brewed an Oktoberfest for Christmas. I added honey, maple and vanilla and called it Decemberfest.

Anonymous said...

Thats a good looking recipe and I am cool with Oktoberfest anytime! I am curious about your color on the brew. I did mine a little lighter, but pulled a decoc so I would venture to say they were close.

I entered the brew into a competition and one of the things they knocked me for was the color saying it was too light for the style. It's my opinion that the style IS light. Look at brews like Spatten.

Anyway, I am interested in your take on this because you give a lot of thought to your brews.

Ted Danyluk said...

I'll keep you posted, and in fact, already posted about how it may have taken a turn for the seriously bad!

Travis, I'd say most Octoberfests are pretty light. In fact, that is what I really love about them, their light color for such a smooth and fulfilling beer.

I saw Munich dark at the store, and thought about substituting a part of the light, just to make add another tone of color. When all of them mix it should look kindof orange, and hopefully a tad muted. I love the tawny orange color in a few imports. Was considering an ounce or two of chocolate malt, but thought it would get too dark.

After it's feverish fermentation, I hope there is still something interesting to write about.

ScottInNH said...

So... how did this come out?? :-)

Ted Danyluk said...

Gee, going back to review beers is still a weakness of mine.

Overall, it turned out pretty darn good. It was a success at an event I hosted. I wanted to write about this yeast strain, and it really does produce a super malty beer. And this malt profile was quite nice and aromatic with some decent mouthfeel. So, I'd probably lighten the malts some, and definitely ferment cooler.

Remarkably, the high ferment temp didn't cause any real off flavors. It was clean and clear, but a tad sweet.

If brewed again, I would lighten the malt bill by swapping the dark Munich out for more Pils. And perhaps cutting the cara-malts in half. Keep the OG where its at, and lower the sacch rest temp a couple points. Then increase the bittering units a couple points keeping a long boil time.