I had really wanted two things from this beer: the opportunity to reuse the Cali-Lager yeast, and to take another run at a festbier! So done and done! Altered the malt bill slightly from before, and I am hoping to get some nice lager-ish qualities from this yeast to really end up with a worthy tribute to one of my favorite German styles.
Festbier V2 - brewed on 5/14/2012 all grains are from Weyermann - Vienna: 3 lbs 4 oz - Dark Munich (about 9 lovibond): 2 lbs 2 oz - Caramunich III: 8 oz - Hallertau pellets: 1 oz (55 min) - Wyeast 2112 slurry
ended up with a bit more water in the boil than I wanted, but still got a 73% eff. OG: 1.053 - IBU 22 - ABV about 4.9%
ferment through 6/3-6/5 in the low 60s, then cold crash for a few days to clear the beer before kegging.
kegged on 6/4...sample at this time was pleasing. seemed a bit thin, but definitely in the lager-y realm with the nod at a traditional festbier that I was hoping for. I think this recipe is ALMOST there! it'll be a while before it hits a tap, so only time will tell.
lager for at least a month, and tap space pending, put on the CO2 in mid-July (update July 14th: no free tap yet!)
8/13: finally on draft, but the stupid CO2 levels are out of whack on the kegerator. psi is 17, then 8.5, then 13...I just want it to be at like 10 or 11! apparently that is too much to ask. BUT that is besides the point. anyway, I remembered this being light(er) in color and body going into the keg, but holy crap is that inaccurate now! I have only pulled a few half glass "samplers", so no pic yet, but the beer is a deep amber with what I would consider a medium body compared to the American ales that I've brewed. very malty with a bit of burnt toast and a touch of caramel. super easy to drink, with (at the moment) unnoticed hop or yeast characteristics...which is perfectly fine for the style. and since it isn't sickly sweet, the Hallertau hops definitely did their job. as of now, the only thing I would change would be to use light Munich vs the dark, with the hope to minimize the slight roasted grain edge. granted this is a very early tasting note, but that is why this site exists! despite that, it is a solid beer that I am quite pleased with so far.
smooth and malty-sweet, definitely in the ballpark...but still not authentic. next time: dropping the caramunich (potentially in its entirety), and using a lager yeast. I hope to take this good beer and make it GREAT. regardless, this recipe is a winner if taken for what it is.