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SiriusDG

Partial Mash Blue Moon Clone

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I got tagged yesterday to make a birthday beer. It is short fuze, and with that, and my inventory, and shipping considerations, I will have to go full LHBS on this one. I want to do a Blue Moon clone, and have turned up differences in opinion (what a shock) on a key question. Here is my proposed recipe so far...


BeerSmith Recipe Printout - http://www.beersmith.com
Recipe: Dora's Delight
Brewer: David Gilbert
Asst Brewer:
Style: Witbier
TYPE: Partial Mash
Taste: (35.0)

Recipe Specifications
--------------------------
Batch Size: 2.13 gal
Boil Size: 1.00 gal
Estimated OG: 1.057 SG
Estimated Color: 4.3 SRM
Estimated IBU: 12.3 IBU
Brewhouse Efficiency: 75.00 %
Boil Time: 60 Minutes

Ingredients:
------------
Amount Item Type % or IBU
1.00 lb Pilsner Liquid Extract (3.5 SRM)
0.25 lb Wheat Liquid Extract (8.0 SRM)
0.99 lb Oats, Flaked (1.0 SRM)
0.94 lb White Wheat Malt (2.4 SRM)
0.77 lb Wheat, Flaked (1.6 SRM)
0.26 oz Cascade [5.50 %] (45 min)
0.26 oz Cascade [5.50 %] (10 min)
0.08 oz Orange Peel, Bitter (Boil 15.0 min)
0.08 oz Orange Peel, Sweet (Boil 15.0 min)
0.15 oz Coriander Seed (Boil 15.0 min)
1 Pkgs Belgian Wit Ale (White Labs #WLP400)

Mash Schedule: Single Infusion, Light Body, Batch Sparge
Total Grain Weight: 2.71 lb
----------------------------
Single Infusion, Light Body, Batch Sparge
Step Time Name Description Step Temp
75 min Mash In Add 3.38 qt of water at 161.4 F 150.0 F

The key question: Given the grain additions, should I use any wheat LME, or just go with all Pilsner? If I should use both, what is the right proportion? I am not big into wheat beers, so this will be a real learning experience for me.

A few other questions as well -- BeerSmith recomends 75 min mash, that sounds long? And the WLP400, which EVERYONE seems to love...will that need a starter, or can I go straight from the smack pack?

Thanx!!

David

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I'm still rubbing 2 sticks together for fire and you have advanced to the shiny stainless steel Zippo but...
I have some Munton's wheat DME that is in the proportion of 55/45 wheat to barley. The Breiss I bought one time was in the ratio of 65/35, respectively. Is the wheat liquid in your recipe like that? Or all wheat? Mayhaps all wheat extracts are such?
After reading some reviews on White Labs site I see that most folks reviewed the WLP400 as slow cooking. Some had to swirl during fermentation to get down to the gravity desired. One reviewer also said he did not pitch with a starter...Smack-pack convenience, right?

Wish I could help you but you have left me in a dusty wake. Sorry to post useless info but Good Brewing to you! It looks like a great batch.

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The grist looks fine to me.
If you wanted to drop the Wheat LME, just up your Malted Wheat to get to the same OG.
Malted Wheat has plenty of diastatic power, so no problem there.
The choice of Cascades seems odd to me. A Wit really should not have much of a hop profile. I would go with Hallertau or Saaz. But, thats your call.

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Good point D. I just pretty much copied an all grain, and let BeerSmith convert and scale, had not applied too much analysis beyond my original questions. Their site does not specify which hops they use. Are your recommendations based on style, or are they specific to Blue Moon based on your own insight?

David

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With this beer for the white labs yeast, you don't have to use a starter. I would let the yeast sit out at room temp for two hours before pitchings. You should see signs of fermentation after 6-8 hours. Just make sure to watch your temps, if they get to high you will have too many fruity overtones in the beeer and if the temps get to low you have will have a strong clove flavor to the beer.

I have used Casscades before wheat beers, they do give a strong citrus taste, but I am not sure you want to do a 45 min boil with them, I would do something around 15-20 min and use a noble hop for the long boil. I think if you did a 45 min boil you would add more bitterness then what you typically see in a blue moon.

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SiriusDG wrote:

And the WLP400, which EVERYONE seems to love...will that need a starter, or can I go straight from the smack pack?

Just to make sure we're on the same page here, unless I've really missed something, White Labs sells their yeast in little "test tubes" not "smack packs." The Wyeast 3942 is supposed to be very similar (perhaps originally from the same source) if you want a smack pack. I personally have no preference.

More to the point, I would not use a starter myself if I were pitching a White Labs test tube into a 1.057 O.G. wort. I personally destest starters for many reasons. One of the reasons is that they delay the start of your brewing - and you seem to be in a bit of a hurry.

Maybe try using a starter the next time and see if you like it any better.

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I actually just assumed smak pack, have not laid eyes on it personally yet. And I also detest starters, for many reasons, so this is all good news.

Still up in the air about the hops, as I said, I just stole some online recipe, I am sure with a little more googling, I would come up with a dozen different ones. :D

Hairlick -- so which target temp would you used to avoid both of those extremes?

Thanx all!

David

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SiriusDG wrote:

Their site does not specify which hops they use. Are your recommendations based on style, or are they specific to Blue Moon based on your own insight?

I do not know about blue moon, but Shock Top (the AB equivalent to Blue Moon) uses Cascade. It has been awhile since I've had either, but I think they are pretty close to each other, so I would not be surprised if Blue Moon had some Cascade in it as well.

My wife may have a couple of Blue Moons and Shock Tops in the fridge. If I think of it tonight, I'll check and maybe pop them open to give you more of an informed opinion on the issue.

:cheers:

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If you use the WLP 300 I would brew it at 70 degrees. The temps will change if you use the fermentis dry yeast such as the WB 06.

Also for the hop addition I checked my notes and for subtle citrus flavor I have used .250 lbs of hops boiled for 20 minutes.

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harlick187 wrote:

If you use the WLP 300 I would brew it at 70 degrees. The temps will change if you use the fermentis dry yeast such as the WB 06.

Also for the hop addition I checked my notes and for subtle citrus flavor I have used .250 lbs of hops boiled for 20 minutes.

I hope that's either a typo or you're brewing a really large batch. .25 lbs of hops would be 4 oz and that seems a bit excessive to me.

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SiriusDG wrote:

Their site does not specify which hops they use. Are your recommendations based on style, or are they specific to Blue Moon based on your own insight?

Based on insight. It has been awhile since I have had a Blue Moon. But, I do not recall noting Cascades. It is just my opinion that a Wit should be brewed with Nobles or at least European Hops. At the same time, a Wit really should not have much of a hop profile. Just enough to offset the malts and really some random herbs for the malt offset as well. But, like I said, its been a bit since I have had a Blue Moon, so maybe it does not have a traditional Wit Profile...

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Yeah it was a typo it is supposed to be .25 oz. I do agree with Drock that you don't want to use a lot of hops, it shouldn't have a strong hop profile which why I recommend using .25 oz and boiling them for a short period of time. There shouldn't be a lot of bitterness.

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esheppy wrote:

SiriusDG wrote:

Their site does not specify which hops they use. Are your recommendations based on style, or are they specific to Blue Moon based on your own insight?

I do not know about blue moon, but Shock Top (the AB equivalent to Blue Moon) uses Cascade. It has been awhile since I've had either, but I think they are pretty close to each other, so I would not be surprised if Blue Moon had some Cascade in it as well.

My wife may have a couple of Blue Moons and Shock Tops in the fridge. If I think of it tonight, I'll check and maybe pop them open to give you more of an informed opinion on the issue.

:cheers:

Well, no blue moon in the fridge.

I listened to an old episode of the Jamil show about Wits last night: http://thebrewingnetwork.com/shows/The-Jamil-Show/Witbier-The-Jamil-Show-03-13-06

Jamil was on vacation, but Doc had some interesting things to say. If you get a chance to listen, you will probably get some good stuff out of it.

He does mention that next time he brews a Wit he might try some cascades to help contribute to the citrus flavor. I think he mentioned that he would like to do it at about 30 minutes... but I might be wrong about that.

Another thing that I remember him saying was that using the dried bitter or sweet orange peal really does not quite get you what you would want out of this beer. He suggests zesting fresh oranges (and other citrusy fruits).

Anyway, I think if you have time it is worth listening to.

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