Maypole Maibock Lager All Grain Beer Recipe Kit
Just as the maypole is used to celebrate the coming of the warm season, this recipe also honors the ending of winter and the short, dark days. Maypole Maibock is brewed in the tradition of the famously malty and flavorful beers historically brewed in winter and then consumed in May coinciding with the return of spring and summer. Packed with delicious fresh, clean pilsner malt flavor and layered with a smattering of Munich malt, this lager is then just bittered enough to balance the malt sweetness and fermented with a clean, crisp and relatively attenuative classic German lager strain. The result is a deep golden beer with a dense and lasting white foam head, and a complex flavor profile with moderately high alcohol content.
- Style: Maibock/Helles Bock
- Fermentation Range: 53-59F
- Original Gravity: 1.066
- SRM: 6.5
- IBUs: 28
- ABV: 6.6%
- Aroma: Medium-high malt aromas with hints of pilsner sweetness and a noticeable toasty character. Very low hop aroma of faint herbals and earthy spice. Very low fermentation derived whifs of faint fruity esters and a tiny hint of sulfur.
- Appearance: Deep golden to nearly light amber color with good clarity after lagering. Firm and lasting tight white foam cap.
- Flavor: Malt flavors dominate with a slightly sweet, grainy flavor and subtle layers of toasty Munich malt. Very low to no spicy hop flavor with moderate bitterness. Fairly dry in the finish.
- Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation. Smooth sipping with a lingering creaminess on the palate. Low alcohol warmth.
Notes from Brad, Northern Brewer Head Brewer:
“In my mind, this recipe is an example of simplicity at its best. Two malts, one hop addition and lager yeast may sound a bit boring, but the end product is anything but that. The bock family of beers have been around in some form since around the 14th century, and now a handful of sub-styles exist under this umbrella. Maibock (aka helles bock), in particular, is probably the most recent style of bock to be developed and came about by taking a traditional helles and brewing it to a higher strength. Unlike the other bock styles, maibocks tend to be much lighter in color and feature a bit more hop character than standard bock, doppelbock and eisbock. Using just the two base malts pilsner and munich creates a wonderful flavor profile of slightly sweet, grainy flavors interlaced with maillard-rich toasty flavors, and is then rounded out with a single hop addition to add enough bitterness to keep the beer’s flavor perception from being overly sweet and malty. Clean German lager yeast is the final ingredient, and will create a very clean fermentation flavor profile while attenuating the beer enough so that it does not come off as overly sweet. Thirsty yet?
The keys to successfully brewing this recipe is all about the yeast. Ensuring that there are enough healthy yeast cells and maintaining proper temperatures is paramount. Ignoring these parameters can lead to several off flavors and certainly a flawed final product. Pitch a ton of yeast and keep the temperatures in the low 50F range for ideal results.
Don’t have the equipment for proper temperature control? No problem, we’ve got you covered there too. This recipe can certainly be fermented as an ale while maintaining most of the lager-like characteristics. In this case, I would recommend ordering the recipe without any included yeast, and then separately ordering an appropriate ale strain. For best results choose a kolsch, German alt or California common yeast strain, and do your best to keep fermentation temperatures as cool as you possibly can. Year in, year out, spring and summer inevitably return, and this beer is a great way to celebrate the much welcomed changing of seasons. Prost!”
Looking for the Extract Version?
|Total Time to Make||8 weeks|
|Beer Style||Pale Lager|
|Beer Recipe Kit Instructions||Click here for recipe kit instructions|
Did 2 weeks primary and 4 weeks secondary at roughly 36F. Slight ester profile on the nose but other than that a solid lager - perfect for May/June weather and a great antidote to "quadruple" IPAs.
I used a yeast starter for the first time and was impressed with how quickly fermentation began. The beer was cold layered for a month which was a new wrinkle for me as well. Overall, the beer is easy to drink and has subtle malty and caramel notes. The color is nice but carbonation was a little lacking using a bottling sugar method. The mouthfeel was a little less substantial than I think was intended for this style of beer so I was disappointed in that. I would probably not brew this particular beer again mostly since the style is not my favorite but it was a good learning experience.
I brewed this in late February, just before heading to Munich, Germany, for a week. Here it is, late May, and I just tapped it. So, a nice long lagering, but so worth it.
This beer takes me right back to the beer halls in Munich. It's clean but full-bodied. Malty but not heavy.
Mine came in at a FG of 1.011 for about 6.4% ABV.
This bock rocks!
This beer takes forever - even with with a double starter - but it's worth it. The Germans knew what they were doing, this flavor is perfect (especially in MN) for the beginning of Spring. The nearly zero hop flavor (since this IS a bock) allows the malt flavor to really sink in. If you prefer hoppy beers or IPAs don't buy this beer, in fact don't ever make a German recipe. Personally I can't stand stand any beer over a 40 IBU, so this is right up my alley. I did a double starter (using fast pitch), and it still took a solid 3 weeks to ferment and get close to my desired FG (style guide recommendation). Then of course you have to let it lager for another month. If you have the time and space to make this and forget about it until May it is totally worth it.
Haven't brewed the beer yet, but ordering from Northern Brewer is easy. Got all the items, so I'm happy so far.