Hybrids: Kölsch & Cream Ale

A couple of Wyeast’s limited edition yeast packages arrived a couple of days ago. The second, I will talk about in another post when I brew a Flanders-style sour ale. Today’s beer used Wyeast 2575 Kolsch II, described by the manufacturer as:

“An authentic Kolsch strain from one of Germany’s leading brewing schools. Rich flavor profile which accentuates a soft malt finish. Low or no detectable diacetyl production. Will also ferment well at colder temperatures for fast lager type beers. Apparent attenuation: 73-77%. Flocculation: low. Optimum temp: 55°-70° F”

So far, so good. Now, I have no problem with the White Labs Kolsch strain (from Fruh, Cologne), but I was eager to give this one a try. With this yeast, I intend to brew a couple of hybrid beers (so called because they share both ale and lager characteristics) over the coming weeks, today was Kolsch, the next will probably be cream ale.

I kept the recipe simple today, 100% pilsner malt, with a single noble hop (Mittelfruh) addition at the beginning of the boil. Many US interpretations seem to include a lot of late hopping and wheat malt, but I don’t believe this bears much resemblence to the commercial examples of the style. The wort – as you can see above – is a nice straw colour, perhaps on the darker end of the style due to the 90 minute boil. I expect this to lighten after fermentation, filtration and a period of storage.

Cologne is a wonderful city for the beer lover. As with any city, you have to go slightly off the beaten track to find the real food instead of the junk they serve to the tourists. For my money, the best place to enjoy a Kolsch is Paffgen. In the photo below you can see me enjoying a 3/4 meter Bratwurst and a Klosterschnitzel, washed down with a couple of stanges of Kolsch. The sausage speaks for itself.

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One comment

  1. Bailey · January 2, 2009

    Hello. Just stumbled upon your site via Leigh’s “The Good Stuff” blog. That koelsch/sausage meal looks fantastic!

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