Fortuitous Accident Dark Lager

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Its been a while since I’ve posted a beer recipe, so here’s a recipe for a recently brewed dark lager. Today’s recipe was motivated by Episode 78 of the Brulosophy podcast, where during one section of the podcast the hosts ramble on about how rye malt would work well with a Vienna lager.

This struck a cord with me, and indeed, I had an ‘ah ha’ moment the second the host mentioned pairing Vienna malt with rye. To my palate, rye adds a deeper and more “round” malt character, which would nicely complement the character of my favourite lager style – Vienna lager. So, motivated by the podcast, I set forth to brew a warm fermented lager with a 3:1 ratio of Vienna:Rye malt, with a bit of midnight wheat to ensure it would be a dark lager. In honour of the podcast, the beer was to be named “Umlaut Lager”.

That was the plan. As you may have guessed by the title of the post, that is not what I brewed. I usually have a sack of Vienna malt in my stocks. I was absolutely certain I had a few kilo’s kicking around, so when I ordered my malt and hops, I only ordered the rye malt. Come brew day I had…no Vienna. So I substituted a 1:3 ratio of pilsner:munich in place of the Vienna, and brewed from there.

Recipe – Fortuitous Accident Dark Lager

Boil Size: 35.56 L
Post Boil Volume: 26.56 L
Batch Size (fermenter): 23.00 L
Bottling Volume: 22.50 L
OG: 1.052
FG: 1.010
ABV: 5.3%
Estimated Color: 11.5 SRM
Estimated IBU: 22.4 IBUs
Boil Time: 90 Minutes

Water: 41.74 L of Brown-Malty (50 PPM Calcium, 55 PPM Chloride, 70 PPM sulfate)
0.15 kg Rice Hulls 2.5 %
4.40 kg 3:1 Pils:Munich malt blend 74.3 %
1.30 kg Rye Malt (4.7 SRM) 22.0 %
0.07 kg Midnight Wheat 1.2 %
10.00 g Warrior [15.90 %], Boil 90.0 min 18.9 IBUs
1.0 tsp Irish Moss, Boil 10.0 mins
14.17 g German Tradition [6.00 %], Boil 10.0 min 3.4 IBUs
14.17 g German Tradition [6.00 %], Boil 0.0 min
1.0 pkg W34/70 Lager Yeast

Single Infusion, 60 min at 66.7C
Batch-sparge to collect 36L

Ferment & Packaging:
Cellar temperature (~14C) for 2 weeks, then keg and force-carbonate

Tasting Notes – Fortuitous Accident Dark Lager

dark lager & springtime flowers

Appearance: Pours nut-brown with a moderate, slightly course head.

Aroma: Strong malt aroma, very “beer-like”, with a modest traditional German hop aroma.

Flavour: Deeply malty, with a crisp lager finish. Malt note is complex, with some sweetness, graininess, and a crust- or biscuit-like character. Hop character is modest, with a typical German hop flavour – herbal and slightly spicy. After taste is a lingering malt sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied and moderately carbonated. The malt-forward nature of the beer gives it a substantial presence on the palate.

Overall: The beer’s name says it all – despite the misplaced ingredients, the beer turned out great. Rich, malty, with a modest balancing hop character. Complex, but easily drinkable. A perfect beverage to enjoy in the still-cool days of early spring.

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