🍺 Top-down Brew: 04B Festbier (Oktoberfest) Calculator

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The remaining malt will be continential pilsner malt, such as Weyerman pilsner malt.

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Output units: Metric US

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Notes

2021 BJCP 4B - Festbier characteristic ingredients: "Majority Pils malt, but with some Vienna or Munich malt to increase maltiness. Differences in commercial examples are mostly due to different maltsters and yeast, not major grist differences."

Vital statistics:

Continental pilsner malt is essential. Jamil Zainasheff suggests a malt composition of 1/3 Vienna, 1/3 Munich, and 1/3 Pilsner. Gordon Strong suggests 60% to 80% pilsener malt, with the rest being Vienna and/or Munich. If crystal malts are used, opt for German crystal malts rather than British or American crystal malts. However, Strong's opinion is that crystal malts are "out of place." Decoction mashes, step mashes, or single step infusion mashes are possible mash methods.

The hops should be German or continental European varieties. Hallertau is the most recommended in the reviewed recipes followed by Tettnang. Using Magnum for bittering and Hallertau for aroma and flavor is a possibility. Saaz is sometimes included as a noble hop possibility, but one source feels that it is too spicy for this style. Most recipes have small amounts of late hop additions. Keep the late hop additions small to keep the focus on malt character.

Use a clean fermenting lager yeast that produces low diacetyl. Fermentation practices that minimize diacetyl should be used, such as a diacetyl rest.

Sources

Beer-analytics.com festbier analysis

Dornbusch, H. (2003, March - April). Oktoberfest: A beer by any other name. BYO, 22 - 27.

Rodammer, N. (2015, March - April). Oktoberfest: Brew now, celebrate later. BYO, 58 - 64.

Strong, G. (2016, January - February). The modern beer of Oktoberfest: Festbier, a lighter Oktoberfest. BYO, 30 - 34

Zainasheff, J. (2014, October). Oktoberfest: A rich, toasty German lager. BYO, 23 - 27


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