My kolsch and Horizon hops

My kolsch and Horizon hops

Perfect Sunday for home brewing. Low 80’s, sunny, and a refreshing little breeze. I felt a little ambitious and ended up brewing two beers, a dunkelweizen and a double IPA.

As I mentioned recently, I’ve been slowly getting more and more into traditional German wheat styles, and after enjoying Weihenstephaner and Aventinus, I’ve been itching to brew my own version. Dunkels are essentially dark hefeweizens, a little more roasted, caramel maltiness with similar banana, clove, and even nutmeg aromas. I really dig the style, partly because there seems to be a bit more complexity than your average hefe.

For the Double IPA, I decided to kick it off with a big alpha acid shot from an ounce of Simcoe, then slowly add to the flavor and aroma with a progression of Mt. Hood and Willamette. Willamette is known for its spicy, woody qualities that I think lend a rather earthy and subtle characteristic to some beers, so I thought it’d be an interesting experiment to see how it played in a DIPA. The expected OG on the recipe was just shy of 1.10, so pretty hefty. But the hops only get me up to about 65 IBUs thanks to the low alpha acid ratings of Mt. Hood and Willamette, so not necessarily a hop monster in the truest sense of the style. But I wasn’t going for eye-watering bitterness. Hope it balances out with all that malt (and in fact, it could even turn out to be more in line with a barleywine vs. a DIPA, depending on how the malt comes through).

To save on time, I went with malt extracts, something I haven’t done in quite a while, but it worked just fine (and cut about 2.5 hours from the whole process). While I brewed, I enjoyed a couple glasses of my kolsch, which I think turned out pretty solid compared to commercial examples I’ve had.

Also, a few pictures below of my hops, which are exploding (I’ve had to rig up a modified trellis system so the Cascade bine can continue to climb), and a massive spider web which I saw on the pine tree in my back yard. Kind of random, but I thought it was cool.

Here are the recipes I went with:

Dunkelweizen (slight variation on a kit from Midwest Supplies)
6 lbs. wheat LME
3 lbs. dark LME
4 oz. Carapils
12 oz. Caramel 40L
1 oz. Tettnanger (in boil at 60 min.)
1 oz. Hallertau (in boil at 2 min.)
Wyeast 3056 Bavarian Wheat 

Double IPA
6 lbs. Gold LME
6 lbs. Light Pilsner LME
8 oz. Aromatic
8 oz. Biscuit
8 oz. Caramel 80L
1 lb. Victory
1 oz. Simcoe (in boil at 60 min.)
0.3 oz. Willamette (in boil at 20 min)
0.3 oz. Mt. Hood (in boil at 20 min)
0.3 oz. Willamette (in boil at 15 min)
0.3 oz. Mt. Hood (in boil at 15 min)
0.3 oz. Willamette (in boil at 10 min)
0.3 oz. Mt. Hood (in boil at 10 min)
0.3 oz. Willamette (in boil at 5 min)
0.3 oz. Mt. Hood (in boil at 5 min)
0.3 oz. Willamette (in boil at flame out)
0.3 oz. Mt. Hood (in boil at flame out)
2 oz. Willamette (dry hop)
Wyeast 1332 Northwest Ale