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SlickRick07

Mexican Aztec Modification Success

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I'm still a new brewer but I wanted to pass along a little success story that I had with the Mexican Aztec recently. My very first homebrew was the MA and I brewed it straight up. It was low on taste and low on ABV but I did produce beer. I now have 5 other batches under my belt and decided to attempt another batch of a beer I had made previously but attempt to improve upon it. Being summer, and that I like Cerveza, I purchased the MA Refill. Here is the recipe I used:

1 Can MA HME
1lb. Light DME
1.0 oz Saaz @15min.
.5 oz Hallertau @ 10min.
4 Limes worth of Zest @Flameout
1/2 Cup of Lime Juice @Flameout

I did the usual sanitizing, fermenting, and bottling. I now knew from my first go around with the MA that it was pretty green until at least 8 weeks of conditioning. So I let this batch rest for 3 weeks for fermenting and 8 full weeks of conditioning. Last night I tasted my finished product. I can say that this was my 6th brew, but the first brew that I would prefer to drink repeatedly and can be proud to let others try. It's a slightly heavier Cerveza but still light, the ABV is 4.76% which is nice for summer, I get just a small hint of lime that can be brought out with a lime wedge, and it has just enough hops to give it flavor and aroma. I'm honestly a bit shocked that I like this so much compared to my very first MA that was very blah.

Not only was this beer a success but it does show that what the veterans on this site preach about being patient, brewing a brew straight up the first time to get a feel for it, etc. is worth listening to and practicing. Thanks for all the help!

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Looks like a tasty recipe. Thanks for sharing. Aztec was my first batch and I also thought it was just meh. Not bad, but not that great either. Might have to give this one a try to see how much it improved. And good tip on a full 8 weeks of conditioning.

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try adding the lime zest after primary fermentation or lime essential oil. The reason for this is the lime flavor compounds blew off with the CO2 during primary. This is the same reason that dry hopping is done after the primary fermentation :cheers: :cheers:

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I'll keep that in mind the next time I brew this again. It definitely has a hint of lime and would be brought out with a fresh lime wedge but I'm assuming that's mostly from the lime juice itself.

Does anyone care to offer a Lime Cerveza Extract recipe that can be made from scratch? I have used the MB HME Refill for both that I've made so far. I would like to brew one up myself if possible.

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Do you have QBrew or Beersmith? QBrew has a MR B DB available. Beersmith more bells & whistles. I would just Google for a recipe and scale it

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Very nice sounding...since I have 4 kits of MA arriving tomorrow, I will have to try this recipe with one!

Thanks

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You should try this HME with White Labs Mexican Lager yeast. This yeast captures the "mexican lager" taste which you cannot find in other lager yeasts, and is incredibly crisp/clean. Even though I screwed up the beer by dry hopping, and filtering, the hydro tasted really good. I have about 6 bottles in the fridge lagering away are in the fridge, hopping that it will get better with time.

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Losman, if there is one aspect of homebrewing I have yet to really learn a great deal about, it's the yeast. I generally have used whatever dry yeast has come with the kit. One thing that does concern me with attempting to Lager is that I don't have the ability to control the temps just yet. I'm considering buying the Johnson Control's Temp Regulater for my small fridge. I still need to research how exactly to lager as well. I know at times the temps change throughout the course of the 3 week fermentation. I can imagine a Mexican yeast would do this well.

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@SlickRick07: when you say "1/2 Cup of Lime Juice @Flameout" are you referring to fresh squeezed lime juice, sweetened lime juice like they use at bars (Rose's brand, typically) or the horrible stuff they sell in the produce section that comes in plastic limes and tastes like cleaning products?

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What was in the water you boiled the hops in? Did you boil the HME/water mixture?

Monty

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"Monsteroyd" post=387016 said:

What was in the water you boiled the hops in? Did you boil the HME/water mixture?

Monty

Monty,

If you check the recipe, you'll see DME in it. You boil water with DME and hops. You never boil the HME.

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+1 to Rickbeer. The HME actually has hop additions built into it so if you boil them, you'll change the profile. I used 1.5 gallons and added the DME/Hops to that. Once I was done with the boil, I removed from the heat and added the HME.

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Yes, I removed all hops at flameout, prior to tossing this into the LBK. I actually also removed the lime zest prior to fermenting. I've been told that I should've left them in for the 21 day fermentation but I can't speak to that as something I actually did.

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"SlickRick07" post=387026 said:

+1 to Rickbeer. The HME actually has hop additions built into it so if you boil them, you'll change the profile.

For any nOObs who may be reading, you may be asking....how? If you boil an HME two things will happen, (1) the wort will darken up some and (2) the hops flavor and aroma profile will change.

(1) The darkening of the wort is due to what's called a Maillard reaction. The Maillard reaction made its debut in the scientific literature thanks to the work of French chemist Louis-Camille Maillard you can google him if you're so inclined. The Maillard reaction is simply..................browning. Holy Crap!! It's that easy but no one explained that to me when I first started so I thought it was all voodoo and witchcraft in the pot. Long boil times spurs the reaction, so if you want a light-colored beer, make sure to keep boil times relatively short.

(2) Boiling an HME will release the compounds that lend the wort its hop F&A (flavor and aroma) chasing them away in the boiling vapors when there are no new hops to replace them. If you boiled an HME alone, with water and no other additions for 30 minutes it, would be pretty dark and it would have little (if any) remaining hops F&A when you were done.

Hope this helps someone. These were questions that nagged me for a while when I first started brewing. I learned the true answer to the boiling question when I asked the MrB brewmaster to explain. I'd seen a post in another forum that said boiling HME's would make the wort more bitter and that did not seem possible to me since you're boiling off the hops essence in the HME if you are not adding anything to reinforce it. This was confirmed and explained via email.

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