Homebrewing a Vienna Lager



Time for another brew post! This time I decided to try out the “award winning?” Vienna Lager from Barley and the Hops.

Recipe Source: Barley and the Hops

Beer Specifications

Beer Name:Vienna Lager
Beer Style:Vienna Lager
Recipe Type:All Grain
Pre-Boil Volume:4.5 gallons / 17 litres
Batch Size:3.5 gallons / 13.2 litres
Estimated SRM:13°
Estimated IBU:30
Estimated OG:1.060
Estimated FG:1.015
Estimated ABV:5.8%

Grain Bill/Fermentables

LBSFermentables
3.4Vienna
1.5Pilsner
1.5Munich Dark
1Crystal 40L

Hops

OzTimeHops
0.360 minNugget
115 minSpalt

Yeast

#Yeast
1Saflager W-34/70

Fermentation Schedule

7 daysPrimary ~50F
7 daysDiacetyl Rest ~65F
21 daysLagering ~36F
7-14 daysBottle Conditioning

Directions

Mash Temperature:152°F / 66.7°C
Mash Time:70 min
Boil Duration:60 min

This recipe’s grain bill had a few firsts for me. Before this brew I had never put together a recipe that was Vienna malt forward, and I think this was also the first time I tried using Munich malt in a beer.

Brew day went well and was (thankfully!) uneventful. I think I’ve got a pretty good rhythm down now that’s worked over the past few brews. It’s nice to not have to stress or worry over every little detail and instead just go on auto-pilot and get in the zone.

It turned out quite clear!

Another new thing for me was that this was my first homebrew where I purposely did a diacetyl rest. Granted I’m still not doing this in a very sophisticated way. Instead my primary fermentation took place in my basement where the temperature is lower and constant, the diacetyl rest took place in my kitchen where it was a bit warmer and lagering took place in my garage where it was pretty close to freezing (thanks polar vortex!).

Fermentation went well and I bottled targeting 2.5 volumes of CO2. Unfortunately I completely forgot to take OG and FG readings on this beer so I’m not actually sure how that stuff turned out.

Tasting Notes

SmellVery malt forward smell with subtle bread notes and a very slight hint of almost a floral like spiciness.
AppearanceNice mix of brown and red that is very clear. Slight head on the beer when poured but it dissipates quite quickly. It’s definitely carbonated though so maybe it’s the grain bill that’s having an effect on the head retention?
TasteA few things come through in the taste for me. First up it’s a malt forward taste that mixes in a breadiness that lingers on into the after taste.
Beyond that you have the usual lager taste from the yeast. I’m actually curious how this would turn out with an ale yeast instead because I think something like US-05 might be clean enough to really allow the maltiness shine through on its own.

Overall I like it. As mentioned above I think if I were to make this recipe again I would swap out the lager yeast for an ale yeast to try and dial in on more of that malt flavour but that’s a personal taste thing. I’d definitely recommend giving this one a shot if you’re looking to brew your own Vienna lager!

P.S. – we were super lazy and just called this brew “The Vienna Lager”.



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