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Vienna Lager - Recipe/Water Help

Hi All,

Since moving towards doing lagers this winter because my basement is ideal temp, I’ve really been focusing on my water, mash PH and making sure everything lines up for the style. I’ve started to work on a Vienna Lager recipe keeping all of this in mind and would like some feedback on my water and recipe, any help or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Below is what I’m planning, let me know what you think. I’m new at using Bru’n Water and working from distilled water as a base, so I might be way off on this! I was trying to hit the vienna boiled targets but shoot for a calcium over 50ppm to aid in yeast health.

Batch Size: 5.25 Galons
OG: 1.051
FG: 1.013
SRM 13.2
IBU 23
ABV 5%
Boil Length: 90mn
Mash: 154

Grain Bill
4lbs Vienna Malt (4L)
4lbs Munich Light (6L)
1.75lbs Pilsner (1L)
.25lbs Carapils (1L)
.1875lbs Melandoin (25L)
.1875lbs Carafa II (425L)

Hop Schedule
1oz Hallertauer Tradition 4.5%AA (60mn)
1oz Hallertauer Tradition 4.5%AA (15mn)
1oz Hallertauer Tradition 4.5%AA (0mn)

Yeast
Wyeast 2124

Mash:
3.5 gallons 90mn rest at 154 degrees (Mash PH of ~5.4?)

Sparge
5.5 gallons 10mn rest at 170 degrees

Base Water
100% Distilled Water

Mash Water additives:
1g Gypsum
1g Epsom Salt
1g Baking Soda
.5g Calcium Chloride
1g Chalk
1ml Lactic Acid 88%

Sparge Water additives:
1.5g Gypsum
1.5g Epsom Salt
1g Calcium Chloride

Finished Water Profile?
53 ppm Calcium
7 ppm Magnesium
18 ppm Sodium
63 ppm Sulfate
19 ppm Chloride
83 ppm Bicarbonate

Target Vienna Boiled Water Profile
27 ppm Calcium
15 ppm Magnesium
10 ppm Sodium
60 ppm Sulfate
15 ppm Chloride
80 ppm Bicarbonate

Thoughts?? :cheers:

I think your targets are pretty close, the only thing I note in the guided profile and your resultant sulfate level is too high. When using noble hops you want to keep sulfate as low as possible and also this beer should be closer to neutral/ malty not into a bitter/highly bitter profile regarding SO4/ Cl. So simply bring your sulfate down until you are closer to 1.3 or lower on the spreadsheet.

Also go back in and adjust your acid addition until your ROOM TEMP PH target is at/ around 5.6
not 5.4

5.6PH at room temp will equate to around 5.3 when mashing.
5.4PH at room temp will equate to around 5.1 when mashing.

In addition even though you “might” be batch sparging, consider adjusting the sparge with acid and drop the magnesium. If you do not adjust alkalinity in the sparge you will be using water that is typically around 7-10PH for bottled/ tap. Ideal is <6.0 to prevent tannin/ polyphenol extraction.

154 mash rest is fine. Although via the recipe/ grist noted you will add plenty of mouthfeel. If it were me FWIW I would shoot lower around 152. As there is something to be said about too much mouthfeel/ body that moves away from easy drinking in a Vienna.

ITsPossible,

Thanks for the feedback, I appreciate it!

I dropped the Epsom Salt and decreased the lactic acid from 1ml to .5ml. This gives me the numbers below, my bicarbonate went up a little but the sulfate cut in half and magnesium is now 0:

Finished Water Profile
53 ppm Calcium
0 ppm Magnesium
18 ppm Sodium
37 ppm Sulfate
19 ppm Chloride
100 ppm Bicarbonate

So my additives will now be:

Mash Water additives:
1g Gypsum
1g Baking Soda
.5g Calcium Chloride
1g Chalk
.5ml Lactic Acid 88%

Sparge Water additives:
1.5g Gypsum
1g Calcium Chloride

My room temp mash PH is now at 5.5, I’m not sure how I can bump this up to 5.6. Any suggestions? On Bru’n water, I didn’t input anything into the Sparge accidification tab, is this needed?

I agree on adjusting the mash temp to 152, I thought 154 was a little on the higher end.

Am I on the right track, this is all new to me and I certianly appreciate the help.

Looking good, I may be able to simplify it even more

I was going to mention it before but didn’t want to add too much confusion initialy.
Chalk has been shown to add relatively little Ca and other effects needed from it unless you use CO2 in solution as chalk is relatively hard to break down in plain water. Many have switched to using pickling lime which on the other hand is very effective.

Give me a minute, let me run some numbers quick and I’ll shoot a reply yet tonight.

Ok,

With a mash addition of:
A. 0.23g/gal gypsum/ 3.5g mash = 0.8 gram ( your adding SO4 and some Ca)
B. 0.20g/gal CaCl/ 3.5g mash = 0.7 gram ( your adding a dose of CL and more Ca)
C. 0.20g/gal Lime/ 3.5g mash = 0.7 gram ( your adding a dose of Ca along with some bicarbonate)
Without any addition the room temp Ph is 5.5 you add some bicarb to increase PH to 5.6. It is better to err towards 5.6-5.7 on this recipe as I have found Munich adds more acidity than normally thought. So as noted no acid needed in mash.
Resultant profile:
Ca: 57
Mg: 0 ( don’t really need, especially for a first foray)
Na: 0 ("")
SO4: 34
CL: 26
HCO3: 87
ALk: 72
Cations/ Anions: 2.8 - 2.9
Resulting SO4/ CL = 1.3

Sparge of 5.5 gallon
2.5g gypsum
2.2g CaCl

Big note: I forgot you were using distilled when referencing to acidifying your sparge.
Distilled contains zero alkalinity and you will not add any Alk or Bicarb when adding only gypsum and CaCl, so this is bigger in the scope of things over PH.
Distilled will be 7.0PH out of the still and will offgas in packaging thereafter dropping usually to 6.5 ish. So just make the mineral additions, you cannot even measure so little enough lactic to drop it under 6.0 anyway so don’t sweat it.

ItsPossible,

Now that’s some high quality H20. Thanks for the quick lesson, your feedback really taught me a lot on some of the basics on building your water profile. I now have good starting point on future recipes and will continue to read up more given I have a lot to learn. It’s overwhelming at first but now it’s starting to make sense.

I’ll make sure to circle back once I get this one brewed and send you some samples to try out. Hopefully this taste as good as it looks on paper!

Thanks again, your guidance has been much appreciated.

Hey man, No prob.
In the dark ages (3-10 years ago) learning water manipulation and teaching others about it was hard as rocks. As even the info on the web was far and few between just a few short years ago.
With AJ Delange, Martin and Kai’s study and introduction of these superb tools and text such as Brunwater now makes something as hard as water easy to understand within a one page post on a forum. That is If your trying to understand, some seem to want it done for them.

I am sure it will be smashing, I don’t wish for a sample although appreciate the offer.
I do though look forward to peoples follow up and am jazzed to hear how it comes out.

ItsPossible,

I feel a lot more comfortable now, but I might post a few more recipes with the water adjustments in the future for a gut check. I need to learn this though to make good beer, I can’t believe it took me 7 years to finally dig into this. I don’t want to count on other people doing the work for me though, what’s the fun in that? What’s nice about Bru’n Water is you can save these by style, so the initial calculations take some time but it gives you a good starting point when you do recipe adjustments. I’m digging it big time!

Just one last question, does the recipe look pretty solid to you? It’s pretty middle of the road when compared to BJCP style guidelines.

Thanks again, have a wonderful New Years!

Coming in late on this, but my two cents on recipe is to use 4lb of pils, 4lb of Vienna and 1.75lb of lit Munich. My own attempts at Vienna lagers were initially on the dark side as far as base malts and I wasn’t getting the smoothness I wanted. It does depend on the color of the Vienna and Munich of course, but I now think a good portion of pils will let the more subtle aspects of the darkere base malts come through.

No! We don’t care about the fact that mash pH is several tenths lower at mash temp than room temp. All mash and wort pH experience is based on room temperature measurement. In addition, reports from AJ DeLange and Colin Kaminski suggest that in malty styles, a room temp mash pH of around 5.2 produces a more pleasant beer. This is in contrast to hoppy beers that are better when mashed at around 5.4. So, I would move that room temperature pH prediction down into the 5.3 to 5.2 range.

I do agree that the reported sulfate level for the Vienna water profile is a bit high. That is probably not quite as accurate as it should be. The original water source for Vienna was wells along the Danube canal. I know that the Danube River water quality does not have that much sulfate. I wouldn’t go higher than about 20 ppm sulfate in creating a Vienna lager.

[quote=“mabrungard”][quote=“ITsPossible”]

Also go back in and adjust your acid addition until your ROOM TEMP PH target is at/ around 5.6
not 5.4

5.6PH at room temp will equate to around 5.3 when mashing.
5.4PH at room temp will equate to around 5.1 when mashing.

No! We don’t care about the fact that mash pH is several tenths lower at mash temp than room temp. All mash and wort pH experience is based on room temperature measurement. In addition, reports from AJ DeLange and Colin Kaminski suggest that in malty styles, a room temp mash pH of around 5.2 produces a more pleasant beer. This is in contrast to hoppy beers that are better when mashed at around 5.4. So, I would move that room temperature pH prediction down into the 5.3 to 5.2 range. [/quote][/quote]

Martin, start a new thread bearing these musings not casually stopping in on my comments made, Just because you authored brunwater doesn’t make you the authoritative view from on high in regards to all the keys to brewing and I will without a doubt state that your view is off here. You have the right to your knowledge and thoughts but there is a time and place to voice your opinion, such as the aforementioned thread directed to such FWIW topics. It is one thing to have a different point of view, but from how you have struck down my view here I take it to mean you understand your knowledge is superior in some way. Well look and learn my friend. Also since you wish to make it a topic of conversation all of a sudden I would beg to differ that .30 points of PH does make a difference especially in the finished beer PH. If one were to be so care free about brewing science then why worry about PH whatsoever?

I have studied Declerck and others that paved the way for modern brewing science and all indications point to PH being sampled at room temp but the algorithm for temperature was always applied to compensate for this variance. So in effect they took the room temp sample but always used a curve to decide exactly where the mash PH was in relation to temp.
So if they measured 5.7PH then they knew and reported true PH to be closer to 5.3.

Back to the OP’s thread I model my Vienna very closely to Tom’s advice above. I don’t think your recipe has flaws persee. But can vouch for simplicity in grist possibly.

Here is a black and white quote directly from Brewing: science and practice. That I contend that my op has been and will be sound practice from reading between the lines of many including this passage and deducting what strategy works for me.
" A major difficulty follows from the habit of measuring the PH of worts or mashes at room temperature and assuming that these values apply at higher temperatures, when they do not (Hopkins and Krause, 1947). Weak acids, like water dissociate more as temperature rises and so the PH values of their solutions fall, like the PH values of mashes. Thus at 65c(149f) the PH of a wort is likely to be about 0.35 Ph unit lower than at room temperature and 0.45 lower at 78c(172.4f).

As the temp of the mash changes (decoctions, temperature programming, sparging) so will the PH. These differences are significant, yet in many reports it is unclear if PH values have been determined at wort- or mash-temperatures or on cooled samples. Probably the latter is most usual. The PH optimum of A-amylase, determined at room temperature is about PH 5.3, but its optimum estimated from mashing experiments is often reported to be about 5.7. This error is due to the PH having been determined on the mash after it was cooled, when the PH had risen. Because of this difficulty the PH optima of changes occurring in mashes are a little uncertain. (table 4.9)
Mashing pale malt in distilled water usually gives a wort with a PH of about 5.8-6.0, this value being maintained by the buffer substances (including phosphates and protiens) from the grist. Infusion mashes are best carried out at Ph 5.2-5.4(mash temperature), and so will give cooled worts with PH values of about 5.5-5.8. "

Table 4.9 ‘optimal’ PH values for ‘normal’ isothermal infusion mashes made with pale malts lasting 1-2h at 65.5c(150f). Data from various sources. As far as possible the temperatures (mash temperature, m, and cooled wort, w), at which the ph values were determined are indicated.
Characteristics 'Optimal’ PH
Shortest Sacc/dextrinization time 5.3m-5.7w
Greatest extract obtained 5.2-5.4m?
Greatest extract from decoction mash 5.3-5.6m?
The most fermentable wort 5.1-5.3m?; 5.4-5.6w?
Mash impossible to filter <4.7
A-amylase most active(+ Ca2+) 5.3m-5.7w
B-amylase most active 5.1-5.3(4.7?)
Maximum yield of PSN 4.4-4.6m; 4.9-5.1w
Maximum yeild of formol-N 4.4-4.6m; 4.9-5.2w
Maximum protease activity (depends on substrate) 4.3m; 4.6-5.0m?
Maximum phytase activity about 5.2m
Carboxypeptidase activity maximal 4.8-5.7

So to finalize, my reasoning’s are rock solid having been drawn from extensive research from masters of the industry, not simple whimsy. Again trust whomever you wish. This is a forum, not a be all end all to perfection. Far from it. I would say over 50% people post here is pure fiction or whimsy.
For the record, for those unaware of this publication published in 2004. Here are the authors that make this quote you will note in the paragraphs above:"Infusion mashes are best carried out at Ph 5.2-5.4(mash temperature), and so will give cooled worts with PH values of about 5.5-5.8. " The book mentioned in Briggs bio is also the one in the same used by Martin per his quote in brunwater “The optimum mash pH range is reportedly 5.3 to 5.5 (Malting and Brewing Science, 1981)” So I would stand that the author (Briggs) was referencing to mash temp values here also in the earlier book used by Martin.

Authors of Brewing: science and practice:
Dennis Briggs was formerly Senior Lecturer in the British School of Malting and Brewing in the University of Birmingham. With Jim (J.S.) Hough and Roger Stevens, he wrote Malting and brewing science (1971; and a second edition with Tom (T.W.) Young in 1980/1981). Other publications include Barley (1978) and Malts and malting (1998).

Chris Boulton is currently at the Coors Brewers Technical Centre at Burton-on-Trent. He is the co-author, with David Quain, of Brewing yeast and fermentation (2001).

Peter Brooke spent over 30 years with Allied Breweries and Carlsberg Tetley, including 6 years as Director of Tetley’s Leeds Brewery. He was also President of the Institute of Brewing from 1997 to 1999.

Roger Stevens was formerly Senior Lecturer in Pharmaceutical Chemistry at Sunderland Polytechnic. As well as being a co-author of Malting and brewing science, he has edited the Institute of Brewing’s monograph on Hops and the Flavour and fragrance journal.

Thank you so much for clarifying your points. I’m pleased to hear that the old masters felt that a higher mash pH than what I’ve espoused and advocated produces better beer. I’m now at a loss as to what to tell brewers?? All those years of improved results…down the drain.

As many brewers have already encountered, an elevated mash pH is one way to elicit undesirable harshness from tannin and silicate extraction. The pH that IT is targeting is closer than I prefer to get to that danger point in my brewing practice.

As IT so graciously points out above, there are many pH optima in brewing. Those values are both higher and lower than the pHs typically targeted in brewing practice and it should be apparent that they can’t all be met. But through the synergy of practice and results, many brewers have found what works well for them. I casually mentioned the findings of a couple of brewers and researchers that I respect. I happen to agree with them. I’m looking forward to findings from brewers that are willing to attach their name to their findings and state that they make better beer through mashing at higher pHs. I’ve stated that I do find that darker styles tend to be more pleasing when mashed at a pH as high as 5.6. But my experience is that a higher mashing pH does create duller flavor in the finished beers for paler styles.

I welcome the findings of IT and others.

I misjudged you altogether. I figured you for a classically schooled individual that as myself can take constructive criticism and admit when he his wrong if proven so. Well looks like we got a jamup on the 101 folks.

Just happened or causally mentioned my &rse, don’t try finding/beating a graceful exit, when you decided to “espouse” your exact view as factoid Sir and now are clearly denigrating my view as wrong in all the same breathe. LOL
"As many brewers have already encountered, an elevated mash pH is one way to elicit undesirable harshness from tannin and silicate extraction. The pH that IT is targeting is closer than I prefer to get to that danger point in my brewing practice. " So very nice of you to espouse such a gentle tone here Martin…LOL 2.0 prove your right before making such bold statements. This paragraph is only light reading as your entire reply holds such a dark, conceded snarkyness I don’t even know where to begin picking you apart. I will stick with laughter at this point. The ball is in your court still as this bashing in disquise only proves my original theroy was correct that you hold yourself on a pedestal above even the goto scientists and text used for UC Davis, Siebel, Leuven, Weihenstephan etc…
I have shown that Briggs for a fact warrants finding a room temp sample to be around 5.5-5.8
is he also wrong because he doesn’t carry your tune? It so happens your using his advice but viewing it wrongly. Backtrack out of that one also.

Well I just happen to have immediate feedback for you that just happens to correlate with the old masters and recent common knowledge also.

I typically mash at 5.3(mash temp) and measured room temp of 5.6 as I practice what I preach.
My final beer PH’s are exactly at the range quoted by Briggs, Declerck, Fix etc… 4.2-4.5ph
So with your estimation that my view puts the beers PH too high, wouldn’t this increase my finished Ph out of “regular” ranges then also? like into spoilage realms of 4.6-5.0?
Beer#1 brewdate 11.24.13 RyePA
Mash PH (room temp) 5.58…Thanks to your help brunwater calculated 5.6(nice job)
Castout wort PH 5.46 (room temp)
Finished beer PH 4.44 (room temp)
Beer #2 brewdate 10.16.13 Bitter
Mash PH (room temp) 5.5 brunwater calculated 5.6(pretty darn close)
Castout wort PH 5.38
Finished beer PH 4.35
Note that due to the fact that my room temp sampled PH was 0.10 lower than expected and left there that the castout wort and finished beer was exactly 0.10 units lower than beer #1. So per your thinking if that same beer was left to mash at room temp 5.2ph and a mash temp ph of <5.0 then my beer/s would have fallen closer to 4.0 or lower and have a tart taste instead of neutral AND clearly out of range of what our current life beer world masters think as acceptable.

Its time to get off that high horse and admit you are wrong here. To have an opinion or view is wondrous, but to proclaim that a fictitious view is fact…Prove that your view is righteous above true brewing masters such as Briggs. I’m gonna love this. I am totaly sure Fix and Briggs amongst other I have read that have this exact view quoted are 100% in the wrong and your recent “experiments” warrant a threshold change altogether. Post some of your actual beer PH from mash(with temp sampled) to post ferment and lets see how it could possibly add up to being within 4.20-4.50 post ferment if you are actually following your own advice to target 5.2PH if measured at room temp.

:shock:

ITs maybe you could make a New Years resoution to improve your civility in internet discussions. This isn’t politics after all.

I keep discourse until others provide visuals that they mean to alter the civility, such as proved by Martin. Not once, but twice showing without a doubt he holds others comments, much less knowledge at a discount, well then he understands fully where he is taking himself if he doesn’t have his facts straight when coming to the table with BS!
Anyone that knows me by now understands that if you wish to actually argue facts, not opinion I will not bat an eye. So you are all adults…If you don’t want to discuss advanced topics like adults or actually argue your opinion then keep your mouth shut unless your ready to bring your A game when opposing my view if it is factual. As shown I will not post advice unless it is helpful and truthful, to the point and factual.

Martin is a big boy and decided to play this role demonstrated. Therefore can represent himself as well, he doesn’t need any hand holders. You already know it wasn’t your place to interject word one here. Do you have anything positive to add to this topic Tom?

Well said, sir!

[quote=“ITsPossible”]I keep discourse until others provide visuals that they mean to alter the civility, such as proved by Martin. Not once, but twice showing without a doubt he holds others comments, much less knowledge at a discount, well then he understands fully where he is taking himself if he doesn’t have his facts straight when coming to the table with BS!
Anyone that knows me by now understands that if you wish to actually argue facts, not opinion I will not bat an eye. So you are all adults…If you don’t want to discuss advanced topics like adults or actually argue your opinion then keep your mouth shut unless your ready to bring your A game when opposing my view if it is factual. As shown I will not post advice unless it is helpful and truthful, to the point and factual.

Martin is a big boy and decided to play this role demonstrated. Therefore can represent himself as well, he doesn’t need any hand holders. You already know it wasn’t your place to interject word one here. Do you have anything positive to add to this topic Tom?[/quote]

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pompous

Another child rears his head. Dobe you were shot down in a discussion with me as well playing a similar role. You still hurting inside my man. Maybe for the new year you can read up on brewing science. Have a great one. Pretty sad grown adults have to hold peoples hands. Not everyone is a pacifist and there is nothing wrong with that, maybe grow a pair and accept it, that’s the wide world for you, what you going to do keep crying on the internet every time I make a post. LOL.

If only you could see your posts through someone else’s eyes. It’s kind of funny, but sad at the same time. Enjoy your New Year’s everyone… even you ITs

:cheers:

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