This is my second attempt at brewing Hank’s Hefeweizen from MidWest Supplies. Here are some modifications I incorporated to make a better beer.
- I think that the problems getting to my final gravity are related to my use of filtered rain water. So I opted to add a half teaspoon of calcium chloride to the boil. It seems to have worked since the final gravity is almost spot on.
- I froze two large blocks of filtered water to shorten the time to cool the boil down to eighty degrees. In my case I sanitized two plastic quart containers we had on the shelf and then filled them with water. It took two days for the containers to be frozen solid.
- Since this is a lighter color beer, I steeped the grains in 3 gallons of water and made sure the temperature did not go over 156°. My plan is to steep the lighter color beers in 3 to 3 1/2 gallons of water.
- I used new caps to bottle the beer. I lost several beers from my Pale Ale batch when the reused caps did not get a good seal. At 3¢ a cap it is not worth the risk.
- I used the liquid Hefeweizen yeast from White Labs this time and got a robust fermentation. It actually came out of the air lock.
When I transferred the beer to the carboy I tested the beer and I knew I had something special. Although the fermentation was not complete it had already developed some nice flavors. It is now more than five weeks after the boil. This is the first beer I have been anxious to try. After drinking a couple of bottles I can say that it has the traditional Hefeweizen wheat flavor with a hint of banana. It is an easy beer to drink and is definitely one of my favorites.