Märzen/Oktoberfest

Märzens are characterized by a medium body and broad range of color. Oktoberfests can range from golden to reddish-brown. Sweet maltiness should dominate slightly over a clean, hop bitterness. Malt character should be light-toasted rather than strongly caramel (though a low level of light caramel character is acceptable). Bread or biscuit like malt character is acceptable in aroma and flavor. Hop aroma and flavor should be low but notable. Fruity esters should not be perceived. Diacetyl and chill haze should not be perceived.

Ingredients:

  • 8 ounces Belgian Cara-Munich malt

  • 8 ounces German Munich malt

  • 4 ounces 40º L crystal malt

  • 7 pounds light DME

  • 6 ounces malto-dextrin

  • 1-1/2 ounces Tettnanger hops

  • 1/2 ounce Hallertau hops

  • 1 teaspoon Irish moss

  • Wyeast 2308 Munich lager yeast or Wyeast 2206 Bavarian lager yeast

  • 1-1/4 cup extra-light DME

Instructions:

  1. Place the crushed specialty grains in a nylon hop bag and steep them in 1 gallon of preheated 150º water for 30 minutes.

  2. Drain and discard the spent grains.

  3. Bring at least 3 gallons of liquor to a boil, remove the brew kettle from the heat source then stir in the extract, the malto-dextrin and the Tettnanger hops.

  4. Return the brew kettle to the heat source and boil for 45 minutes, then add the Hallertau hops and the Irish moss.

  5. Boil for an additional 15 minutes, then remove the brew kettle from the heat source, cover it and drop the temperature of the wort as quickly as possible to 77º F.

  6. Once the wort has cooled to below 77º F, take an original gravity reading, pour the wort into a primary fermenter through a funnel with a strainer and add enough cool water to create 5 gallons.

  7. Once the wort has been transferred to the primary fermenter, pitch the yeast, stir the wort vigorously, seal the fermenter with an airlock and ferment at approximately 47-52º F for 1 week.

  8. Rack the beer to a secondary fermenter and allow the beer to finish fermentation.

  9. Once fermentation is complete, rack the beer to a bottling bucket, prime with the extra-light DME and bottle and condition as usual.

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