German Mashing Technique: Hochkurz

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Beachbum
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German Mashing Technique: Hochkurz

Post by Beachbum » 7 years ago

I've been frustrated with my German Style beers and the last one (Pils) turned out more like Tooheys New. For non Australian Members that's like saying you succeeded in making a bad copy of Miller or Carling. :?

So I've been doing some studying up and found a great site Braukaiser http://www.braukaiser.com/wiki/index.php/Main_Page
I've found that the most popular mash used by German breweries today is the Hochkurz (high-short) mashing schedule.
It's an infusion mash and instead of just mashing at some mid range such as 65 degrees celsius, you use three 'rests'


A maltose rest at 63 degrees for half an hour to produce maltose
A dextrin rest at 70 degrees for half an hour to convert the rest of the starch to dextrins etc
A mashout at over 75 degrees
Image It produces a much fuller bodied beer than just a single temperature infusion mash apparently. Anyway I've just done one in my 40L electric urn and it's truly a breeze. What I did was:

Heat strike liquor to around 67 degrees
Fit bag and dough in. I hit 63 spot on - it's a bit cool here ATM and the grain was coolish
Lag the urn and rest for 30 mins
Lift the bag off the electric element and raise to 71 degrees with a good pumping. I hit it first off, but it could take a couple of tries.
Lag the urn and rest for 30 mins
Lift the bag off the electric element and give it a good surge for about 10 minutes to get the mash to around 78 degrees.
Give wort good pumping, lag the urn again and go to ALDI (actually not required, but it can sit there for a while as enzymes should be zapped)

I'm currently boiling, and it's smelling like malt heaven - it's a Munich Dunkel:

4.00 kg Pale Malt, Galaxy (Barrett Burston) (3.0 EBC) Grain 65.47 %
1.00 kg Munich Malt - 20L (39.4 EBC) Grain 16.37 %
0.50 kg Cara-Pils/Dextrine (3.9 EBC) Grain 8.18 %
0.30 kg Crystal Malt Dark (240.0 EBC) Grain 4.91 %
0.25 kg Caramel Wheat Malt (90.6 EBC) Grain 4.09 %
0.06 kg Carafa II (811.6 EBC) Grain 0.98 %
20.00 gm Northern Brewer [8.50 %] (60 min) Hops 16.6 IBU
20.00 gm Hallertauer, New Zealand [8.50 %] (20 min) Hops 10.0 IBU
8.00 gm Tettnang [4.50 %] (20 min) Hops 2.1 IBU



Beer Profile

Est Original Gravity: 1.060 SG
Est Final Gravity: 1.016 SG
Estimated Alcohol by Vol: 5.84 %
Bitterness: 28.7 IBU Calories: 90 cal/l
Est Color: 34.5 EBC


Drinking a pint of Ralph's ESB he sent me :twisted:
Last edited by Beachbum on 20 Sep 2010, 13:44, edited 5 times in total.


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Post by outbreak » 7 years ago

Ok someone was reading my mind......


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Post by Ralph » 7 years ago

Yep, fantastic resource is braukaiser (I just linked to it a minute ago!), used it as a primer to work out those lagers, but also when I was foolishly messing around with stepped ale mashing. If I have to do it with the ales again, I'll use this sort of schedule, seems far better and now wondering why I missed it when I was up the garden path with the 100% base malt shenanigans. :oops:

Hope you like the ESB, its pretty ding dong!
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Post by PistolPatch » 7 years ago

LOL outbreak ;)...

Great post as usual BB,

I have hardly ever tasted a great lager or pilsner. Even the gold medal winners I have sampled never say, "Wow," to me. The best beer I have had in my life though was a Munich Helles / Pilsner recipe brewed by Nev. I think it's a Munich Helles but it is probably a proper Pils - hard to tell as we home brewers often over-hop beers for their style.

Anyway, this, "best beer I have ever tasted," brewed by Nev, had no "Wow" factor for me until I tasted the last of the 6 bottles he gave me, 9 months later. This last bottle was sublime. I actually opened the bottle in the middle of a tasting session - after a heap of other beers. I can never taste any beer once I have had 3 or 4 but this one jumped out even after I had tasted a mango beer??? I re-capped it straight away. Even though half of it had been poured, I just knew I had to taste this beer again on a clean palate.

The next day, I couldn't face a beer as it ended up being a rather big night :roll:.

A day later, I poured it out. And yes, it was the best beer I have ever tasted. For me it was far more interesting and captivating than Deus but then again I am not into beers like that.

I replicated that recipe and sure enough, it got better and better over time. I actually had mine in a keg with a dodgy weld resulting in, what I reckon was a quite major, "acetyldeyde," fault. But after 9 months in this dodgy and, by that stage, almost empty keg, that beer still scored a Bronze. The captivating flavours still overwhelmed the ugly :). (Even to me, actually.)

Anyway BB, excuse the long ramble but none of us should have to wait 9 months for a great lager/pils. Maybe the Hochkurz method will help and I am certainly prepared to give it a crack.

You have two urns now so you might be able to do a side by side?

The next double-batch lager I do, I'm actually going to do something unheard of. After cold-conditioning for a few weeks, I'm actually going to expose the beer to about 40C or more for a few weeks. It worked with a BIAB lager I had in a keg as I travelled across Australia that got exposed to 60 C several times over 8 weeks, it works with red wine so I think this stupid idea is worth another crack. Looks like I'll have to bottle that brew though :).

Once again, great thread BB and hope I haven't taken it off-topic - ways of improving lagers/pils always fascinates me and when I brew the above double-batch, I will use your mash regime for sure,

PP.
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Post by Beachbum » 7 years ago

Yes Pistol Patch - another thing I'm going to try as well is to use an all-Weyermann grain bill. I usually use Barrett Burston Galaxy Pilsener Malt as the base malt, as I like to support the local industry / malt miles / yadayada but I really should go the genuine Bavarian - especially after going to a lecture by Thomas Kraus-Weyermann. Their setup and quality control is awesome, they even have their own dedicated fleet of tankers in Europe so their products are never sullied by contact with even one grain of someone else's inferior product. Haha.


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Post by outbreak » 7 years ago

Sorry to go OT but Beachbum correct me if I am wrong, but do you no chill? If so, are you worried about DMS with the Weyermann grain? I mention this because I purchased 25kgs of Weyermann pils and have since then read about no chill and the dangers of DMS.


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Post by Beachbum » 7 years ago

I've never had a problem with DMS - I regularly do a 90 min boil and I would expect that would take care of any problems there.
Cheers
Michael


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Post by Ralph » 7 years ago

I was worried about DMS in my Munich Helles... then I realised I'd added Polenta! For one batch that is, unsure if I'll do it again. Seriously, its no biggie if you don't do anything silly, but the longer, uncovered boil should make doubly sure.

I've used 100% Weyermann product in my lagers, no hesitation in doing it again, NC or otherwise. It placed third in the Qld comp recently, hoping to repeat in the Nats, but I won't count that chicken just yet as it is still just fermenting.
Last edited by Ralph on 21 Sep 2010, 22:07, edited 5 times in total.
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Post by Stitch » 7 years ago

PistolPatch wrote:
I replicated that recipe and sure enough, it got better and better over time.
Care to share that recipe with us mate?
Last edited by Stitch on 27 Sep 2010, 18:03, edited 5 times in total.


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Post by PistolPatch » 7 years ago

Stitch: I just rang Nev and he has no problems with me sharing it. I have put it up here and have called it a Munich Helles. A few extra hops though and it would definitely be a pilsner.

Beachbum: This recipe is all Weyermann but I may have used Galaxy the last time I brewed it - I have notes somewhere :).
Last edited by PistolPatch on 28 Sep 2010, 17:25, edited 5 times in total.
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Post by Cameron » 6 years ago

Hey Beachbum,

You're right that it can be pretty disappointing going to all that trouble lagering for ages to get a beer without the maltiness you were hoping for. I recently brewed a Munich Dunkel which didn't blow me away (still nice though). I'm forming a plan that I can have another go, exact same recipe, except use the Hochkurz mash method. I could do a side by side tasting then. :love:

Thanks a lot for posting the info. I hadn't heard of this at all before.


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Post by Beachbum » 6 years ago

It's quite a few months since I made that brew and I tell you what it was bloody lovely - the best German Style beer I've ever made.

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Post by wizard78 » 6 years ago

This mashing technique has got my intrest. Do you think an ale recipe would benefit from this style of mashing, or would it be just for lagers?
Cheers :drink:
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Post by stux » 6 years ago

I'm seriously considering trying it this weekend, looks like fun :)
Fermenting: -
Cubed: -
Stirplate: -
On Tap: NS Summer Ale III (WY1272), Landlord III (WY1469), Fighter's 70/- II (WY1272), Roast Porter (WY1028), Cider, Soda
Next: Munich Helles III

5/7/12


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Post by Beachbum » 6 years ago

The "Wisdom" is that UK ales only need a single infusion mash and that the Hochkurz mash and other stepped mashes became popular as the Continental malts became better and better modified so didn't need the old decoction, but I reckon it would work for ales - I'll be giving it a try in a Yorkshire Bitter and interested to see if it affects the malt flavour.

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Post by shibolet » 4 years ago

going to try this tomorrow morning. will be brewing my double batch Helles bock / Belgian strong - two beers in one brew recipe.
i hope i remember to post back here in a couple of months with tasting notes.
Cube:
fermenter: Sourdough Spelt Ale, Classic Lambic, Oud Brune, Barrel Aged Belgian Dubbel
Kegs: Bob's Black IPA, Blanc Blond, Soda...
to be brewed:

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