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This weekend's brew is going to be an Oktoberfest/Märzen style lager and so today is yeast-starter today and it's a big one. I'm using a reasonably fresh pack of Wyeast 2308 (Munich):

I've used this one before. It produces wonderfully rich and deep malt flavours. The calculator's recommended a 2.5l starter so I had to break out the big 5l flask:

Hopefully 48 hours on the stir plate should do it then I can cold-crash for a couple of days and decant the spent DME before pitching into the wort. Not sure on the final grain bill for the recipe yet but I'm going to start with the recipe on the Braumeister website as I'm sure they know a thing or two about how to make German beer.

Brew day

Recipe Specifications
Date: 12 May 2019
Boil Size: 24.68 L
Post Boil Volume: 22.08 L
Batch Size (fermenter): 21.00 L 
Bottling Volume: 19.00 L
Estimated OG: 1.047 SG
Estimated Color: 13.8 EBC
Estimated IBU: 22.1 IBUs
Brewhouse Efficiency: 76.00 %
Est Mash Efficiency: 76.7 %
Est Mash pH: 5.30
Water profile: Ca:25, Mg:4, Na:10, SO4:11, Cl:40, HCO3:25
Boil Time: 60 Minutes

Amt              Name                                             Type          #          %/IBU         Volume     
26.33 L          Tesco Ashbeck                                    Water         1          -             -           
2.70 ml          Lactic Acid (Mash)                               Water Agent   2          -             -           
0.90 g           Calcium Chloride (Mash)                          Water Agent   3          -             -           
0.20 g           Calcium Chloride (Mash)                          Water Agent   4          -             -           
2.00 kg          IREKS Munich Malt (20.0 EBC)                     Grain         5          48.0 %        1.30 L     
1.75 kg          IREKS Pilsner Malt (3.5 EBC)                     Grain         6          42.0 %        1.14 L     
0.42 kg          IREKS Crystal Maple (3.5 EBC)                    Grain         7          10.0 %        0.27 L     
0.20 ml          Lactic Acid (Sparge)                             Water Agent   8          -             -           
15.00 g          Magnum [9.30 %] - Boil 60.0 min                  Hop           9          18.1 IBUs     -           
10.00 g          Tettnang [4.60 %] - Boil 10.0 min                Hop           10         2.2 IBUs      -           
1.00 Items       Whirlfloc Tablet (Boil 7.0 mins)                 Fining        11         -             -           
15.00 g          Tettnang [4.60 %] - Boil 5.0 min                 Hop           12         1.8 IBUs      -           
1.0 pkg          Munich Lager (Wyeast Labs #2308) [124.21 ml]     Yeast         13         -             -           

Mash Schedule: Single Infusion, Medium Body, Batch Sparge
Total Grain Weight: 4.16 kg
Name              Description                             Step Temperat Step Time   
Mash In           Add 21.33 L of water at 68.9 C          65.5 C        60 min

I was up at 6:15am to get started, prepped the water with the delicate profile I used so successfully for my Pilsner. Mashed in exactly on target at 65.5C and got a point over the expected gravity. Good enough for me. Nothing exciting to report about the process - a lager is not a challenging recipe. I ended up with about 20.7 litres of lovely looking golden wort thanks to the very large percentage of Munich malt in an Oktoberfest. OG was bang on at 1.047.

Talking of fermenters, I did my lower back in a couple of weeks ago lifting a full keg into my keezer so I decided to purchase some lifting assistance:

This foot-operated lift gets up to about 90cm from where I use a sheet of checker board aluminium to bridge the gap to my brewfridge. Now I can just slide my fermenter in and out without lifting it. My back is thanking me already.


I got back from a week away today and it was time to keg the Festbier after 24 days in the primary. FG was 1.007 giving me a satisfactory ABV of 5.4%. The extended d-rest time in the primary certainly gave the Wyeast 2308 time to settle as it had packed down into a nice hard cake that smelled absolutely wonderful. I fined the keg with Kwik-Clear, added 2g of ascorbic acid as an oxygen scavenger, purged the headspace with CO2 and set at 12 psi to carbonate and condition over the next few weeks. I'm rather looking forward to this one.

Tasting notes

It's the first time I've used Tettnang hops and if this flavour is anything to go by then I'm really looking forward to sampling my hoppy pilsner made with 100% tettnang once it's carbed and conditioned.