Monday, December 17, 2007

A Lost Style?

There are many different styles of beers to choose from some classics like german hefeweizen and some new like american double IPA's. There is a style that might have arisen in the United States, most likely California, during the craft brewing revolution. The style is Wheatwine.

Wheatwine is very similar to barleywine with one obvious exception: Wheatwine's primary ingredient is wheat. It's a bit like a doppel weizenbock, with different hops and yeast. Wheatwine is smooth, full-bodied and high in alcohol content. This beer packs a wallop and it's a worthwhile style for the homebrewer to master.

A wheatwine grain bill might look like this: 32% pale two-row malt, 64% wheat malt, and 4% crystal (40L). This grain bill will produce a light amber hue and a nice caramel malt flavor. The OG will be around 1.100 and the IBU's should be around 60. The yeast should be a clean fermenting yeast like White Labs WLP005 or a similar yeast that will produce a smooth, balanced flavor. Age the wheatwines for 3 months, minimum, at a the coldest temperature above freezing.

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