Munich Dunkel

Oktoberfest is almost underway! While I am not in Germany swinging massive liters of beer from side to side while listening to some good ol’ fashion polka band, I do celebrate in my own way, I BREW! While I have too many favorite German styles to list, two of my all time favorites are Munich Helles and Munich Dunkel. So I decided to try my hand at brewing a Munich Dunkel and it actually made it to the final round of the National Homebrew Competition in Grand Rapids, MI.

A close brewing friend and I decided that we would brew this together and split a 10 gallon batch.  This beer is dark brown yet brilliantly clear, rich in malt aroma of slightly toasted bread with complex malt sweetness and melanoidins.  Wow … just writing that makes me hella thirsty.

The beer is on the extreme side of the BJCP guidelines but in my experience, and that of many others, beers that are on the high end of the BJCP guidelines and even slightly above, generally score better.  After brewing, lagering and carbonating this brew, I strapped on a pair of lederhosen, danced on the tables of a bier garten while singing Ein Prosit.

10 gallon batch. Based on a recipe by Ron Price, a fellow American Homebrewers Association forum member, new friend and fantastic brewer.

14.5 lb Munich Dark
4 lb Pilsner
12 oz Carafa II
8 oz CaraMunich
2.50 Domestic Hallertau @60
.50 Domestic Hallertau @20
Wyeast 2308
90 minute boil
Double thick decoction
Ferment low. Diacetyl rest once about 75% fermented.  Lager 4-6 weeks.  Remember, if bottle conditioning, add a 1/4 pack of neutral yeast (US05 is a good one) to the bottling bucket with your priming sugar to ensure proper carbonation is reached.

So, turn on your favorite polka radio station, dust off the brew equipment and raise a glass to a German classic…..Munich Dunkel! Prost!