October 23, 2018
Classic American Lager Recipe
Like many homebrewers, for a long time we were uninterested in making an American Lager. They're certainly not as fancy as a Coffee Stout or a Brut IPA. But after a long steep in US brewing history (Land of Amber Waters is a solid read), we saw that there's much to appreciate about the American Lager.
We have two American Lager kits for order, both of which make a stellar beer:
Why did the American Lager come to be? By brewing with what our forefathers had on hand, of course, just like everyone else; that's why Belgian Tripels have candi sugar, Japanese beers have rice, British brewers have wonderfully biscuity malt flavors... the list goes on.
Although over-reliance upon this crop is much maligned, corn is an American fixture. It only makes sense that it features as a prominent adjunct.
This same reliance on corn also planted whiskey firmly within the soil of the American soul - but that's another story.
Design your own recipe by choosing your homebrew ingredients.
One of our Brewmasters played around with the style a bit, throwing in his own flair. His goal was to tread the lines between crisp and silky, new world and old.
American Lager Recipe:
- 5 lbs Rahr 2-row
- 2 lbs German Munich
- .5 lbs Flaked Maize
- .25 lbs Flaked Barley
- .4 lbs Briess Carapils
- .5 oz Northern Brewer @ 60 min
- .5 oz Czech Saaz @ 5 min, Mash at 152
- Wyeast 2124 Bohemian Lager
OG 1.048 (approximately 80% efficiency)
Notes on the ingredients:
Corn provides crispness, dryness, and a distinctive grainy/sweet flavor. The tiny amount of flaked barley is there for smoothness and, with luck, a flavor that shifts a bit, with a slightly full and silky start yet a crisp, dry finish.
Carapils lends some body and sweetness, and the hops are minimal, just a bit to keep it interesting.
Rahr 2-row is a plain malt, and this beer should be mainly plain, but a small amount of Munich should keep it interesting without dominating.
This is just one lager experiment among infinite options. Let your freak flag fly. Or your American flag. Either way.