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Good Water Profile for Oktoberfest?

I am going to brew an all grain oktoberfest this weekend. I was originally thinking I should use a water profile such as the “Munich” in Brewsmith. But searching around the threads I see some people cautioning against that for various reasons such as mash ph etc. . I was just assssuming it would be a good target, but maybe not. anyone have a water profile that they like for this beer? I can just pick a water profile target more generic in Brewsmith, I have no problem with that.

Thank you!

That’s what I use for mine. Turns out great.

That’s good to know, thanks. do you adjust for mash ph as well?
The posts I saw were a few years old.
Looks like I need to add some chalk to my spring water which of course is the only additive I don’t seem to have on the brew shelf. I’ll have to grab some in the morning.

Targeting a city profile should be done cautiously. Are you sure brewers didn’t adjust their water? There’s overwhelming evidence they did. For example, how was Munich helles brewed with the same water as a Munich dunkel?

Your better bet is to target the profile by SRM that best suits your needs (in this case amber malty).

Save the chalk. It very unreliable in regards to dissolving into your strike water unless it’s dissolved via carbonation. What are you using it for? With that we can make other suggestions.


You’d do better to use some Gypsum… You’ll get alkalinity buffering action, along with the +H ions to lower the mash… I think you said you have a way to test pH? Using some Vienna malt? Then you’ll want to keep a close eye on pH as Vienna has the ability to lower the pH a bit more than Munich… Start with the strike water at 5.9, mash in wait 15 minutes and test… Baking soda will bring the pH back up, but try your best to sneak down to 5.2- 5.4. Sneezles61

I mash my lagers at 5.4pH and adjust the kettle to 5.2. Lager yeasts tend to be a bit less acid producing than some ale yeasts. I find this gives me a better pH in the glass for crisp flavor and good clarity.

With my well water adjusting pH for lagers almost always involves acid to lower the pH.

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Well it’s going to be my sons beer and since he is the bio engineer in the family I asked him to pick the profile he thinks is best. He also was thinking about the malty Amber. I have been reading about the challenges getting chalk to actually dissolve in water, seems more trouble than it’s worth. I do have a ph meter to measure my mash but from what I am told 15 min into the mash is sort of late to try to adjust. So far I have been doing well with the beersmith calculated lactic acid additions to mash water. I do have a pound of Vienna malt and a pound of Munich malt in this recipe.

I played around with not adding chalk and adding gypsum instead , but it always seems to throw something else off. They should add a checkbox to calculate based on ingredients you would like to omit.

I will prob brew a second batch of this soon ( one for me), and I may choose whatever water profile my son doesn’t choose so we can compare the beers. ( assuming we are between the malty Amber and the Munich).

Thank you for all the input !

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Baking soda has bicarbonate :grinning:

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Quick question not meaning to high jack this thread. But how many of you stick to these water profiles. Let’s talk water. The water for Munich comes from uplands in the Bavarian alps. Munich water has a high temporary hardness. It is also known for containing moderately low levels of sulfates. The ratio of sulfates to chloride is 37.5 which could contribute to a bitter hoppy beer if not adjusting your hops in your recipe. Below is water profile for water in Munich.
Calcium 75 (ppm)
Sulfate 120 (ppm)
Magnesium18 (ppm)
Sodium 2 (ppm)
Chloride60 (ppm)
Carbonates180 (ppm)
With a water profile like this The higher alkalinity of this water profile makes it more suitable for successful conversion of Vienna and Munich malts as well as darker, more acidic, malts.
The estimated range of beer color that you can brew with this water profile is from medium amber to deep amber.

I tend to use the “color” profiles more than the cities. Martin always recommended that when he was on the forum regularly. I use the pale ale profile for my PA/IPAs, Munich for Ofest and my Helles and I use Pilsen for my Pilsner. Besides those it’s usually a color profile.

I don’t follow water profiles… I’m just making the most of what I have to brew wonderful brews. The water run off from the mountains doesnt have time to grab alot of minerals and with boiling it will precipitate some of the temporary hardness. . So with the Calcium in the solution will help with +H, bringing down the pH… The darker malt is contributing even more acid, and with not much Sodium, I think it would allow the darker malts to create a harshness to the brew. I believe thats why it better suited for an amber style water, not much to buffer. I’ve not gotten into the sulfite/chloride and hop ratio’s much yet… Still grabbing and reading all I can… It also seems that Vienna will contribute more to the +H for pH… My Mocktober fest is primarily Vienna, some dark Munich, and dammit, I forgot the wheat… Sneezles61

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