from the brewing archives…
Grätzer (also known as Grodziskie) is a top-fermented, smoked wheat beer historically brewed in Poland.
I fell in love with the style after tasting Vlad the Inhaler from Blind Bat Brewery at the Bellport Charity Beer, Food & Wine Tasting on June 10, 2010. I based my recipe on Kristen England’s Grätzer recipe in Brewing with Wheat by Stan Hieronymus.
(a 3 gallon batch brewed in my backyard using the Brew in a Bag method)
- 4 lbs wheat malt house-smoked over cherrywood chips (this post discusses how I smoke malt)
Mashed in at 122℉ for 30 minutes then raised temp to 148℉ for 60 minutes. No sparge – drained sack over the grill shelf from my smoker.
Pre-boil gravity: 1.032
Addition Schedule (60 minute boil):
- 60 min: .45 oz Northern Brewer pellet hops (9% AA)
- 15 min: 0.2 oz US Hersbrucker pellet hops (3.5%)
Approximate IBUs: 20
Cooled to 68℉ and pitched 1 packet of Safale S-04 (not rehydrated) and fermented at cellar temperatures (I don’t have exact temps in my notes but my basement temps were somewhere in the 60s at this time).
(7.17.2011) OG: 1.038
(7.31.2011) FG: 1.008
Around 4% ABV
Bottled on 8.27.2011
Delicious – smoked ham in a glass. This beer was light, refreshing yet packed a ton of smoky flavor – very quaffable.
I loved this beer and can’t wait to brew it again this year – it’s a perfect summer session ale in my book. I might smoke the wheat with a different type of wood – oak is traditional but I enjoyed the cherry. It might be nice to use a combination of wood chips, although I would omit hickory from the mix as that seems like it might be a little too intense. mdawson got excellent results using the Weyermann Oak-Smoked Pale Wheat Malt for a grätzer & wrote it up on the Northern Brewer blog. I’m very tempted to order the Weyermann malt from Northern Brewer and try it out. Also, this beer is ideal for Brew in a Bag as you don’t have to worry about a stuck mash – if you brewed it on a traditional system you would need to use rice hulls. I think I might be smoking some malt this weekend so I can brew this beer again as soon as possible.
Fermentations in Progress:
- Helles-style lager
- 7 sours
- grilled pineapple ale
- spinach wine