Mosaic Pilsner SMaSH

Beer purists turn away! Looking for something a little outside of ordinary? Try brewing a lager using hops traditionally reserved for a Pale Ale or IPA. This lager consists of 100% Chateau Pilsen 2RS malt and Mosaic hops and was fermented with Saflager S-23 yeast.

This beer was brewed by Brandon. Here’s the brew log and recipe in his own words:

I had a bunch of Mosaic pellets in the freezer and I was really enjoying a Maibock that I had on tap. I still had a packet of S-23 in the fridge that had expired 2 years prior to brewing and thought what better way to use that yeast than to make a Mosaic Pilsner SMaSH!

Lager purists might want to skip this paragraph. No, I did not make a starter. Yes, the yeast was 2 years expired. Yes, I just directly pitched one packet directly into the wort when it reached 53’F. No, I did not aerate with O2. Yes, fermentation was just fine and I hit an FG of 1.006.

I went with a smaller batch on this brew because, thanks to all the COVID-19 lockdowns, my wife and I were drinking a hell of a lot of beer since we weren’t having our normal parties where we’d readily kick kegs. Smaller batches make it easier to keep my brewing going without feeling like I’m forcing myself to drink.

The beer itself is amazing. I’m definitely going to brew similar beers again and experiment with different single hops or maybe use a NEIPA style hopping profile. I wasn’t going for IPL kick-you-in-the-teeth amounts of hop character and think I found a nice balance. You can definitely tell it’s a lager with the characteristic lager yeast phenolics but the mosaic really hits you when you put the glass to your nose.

Due to my ground water being fairly warm, I was only able to chill my wort to about 80’F. I transferred my warm wort into my fermenter and set it in my fermentation chamber to 53’F. When the wort reached that temp I pitched the packet of yeast and shook the carboy pretty well.

I dry-hopped the beer four days after setting the fermentation chamber to 68’F (10 days post-yeast pitch). I added 2oz of Mosaic pellets loose into the carboy and let them sit for three days. After the three days I racked the beer into a keg with some gelatin. After purging with CO2 and giving the keg a little positive pressure, I started dropping the fermentation chamber temp down to 33’F over the course of two days.

I let the beer lager for about two weeks at 33’F before transferring the keg to my kegerator where it sat at 40’F on CO2 for two additional weeks before serving.

Recipe Specifications

Boil Size: 5.90 gal
Post Boil Volume: 3.65 gal
Batch Size (fermenter): 3.00 gal
Bottling Volume: 2.50 gal
Estimated OG: 1.046 SG
Estimated Color: 2.7 SRM
Estimated IBU: 30.0 IBUs
Brewhouse Efficiency: 68.00 %
Est Mash Efficiency: 79.3 %
Boil Time: 90 Minutes

Ingredients:

Amt              Name                                             Type          #          %/IBU         Volume     
3.50 g           Gypsum (Calcium Sulfate) (Mash)                  Water Agent   1          -             -          
1.00 tsp         Phosphoric Acid 10% (Mash)                       Water Agent   2          -             -          
5 lbs 8.0 oz     CHÂTEAU PILSEN 2RS (1.5 SRM)                     Grain         3          100.0 %       0.43 gal   
0.35 oz          Mosaic (HBC 369) [11.60 %] - Boil 60.0 min       Hop           4          26.9 IBUs     -          
3.50 g           Gypsum (Calcium Sulfate) (Boil)                  Water Agent   5          -             -          
0.25 tsp         Irish Moss (Boil 15.0 mins)                      Fining        6          -             -          
0.50 tsp         Yeast Nutrient (Boil 15.0 mins)                  Other         7          -             -          
1.00 oz          Mosaic (HBC 369) [11.60 %] - Steep/Whirlpool  10 Hop           8          3.1 IBUs      -          
1.0 pkg          SafLager West European Lager (DCL/Fermentis #S-2 Yeast         9          -             -          
0.25 tsp         Gelatin (Secondary 7.0 days)                     Fining        10         -             -          
2.00 oz          Mosaic (HBC 369) [12.25 %] - Dry Hop 3.0 Days    Hop           11         0.0 IBUs      -

Mash Schedule:

Single Infusion, Light Body, Batch Sparge
Total Grain Weight: 5 lbs 8.0 oz
----------------------------
Name              Description                             Step Temperat Step Time  
Mash In           Add 8.88 qt of water at 158.1 F         149.0 F       60 min     

Sparge: Batch sparge with 2 steps (1.64gal, 3.20gal) of 168.0 F water

Fermentation Schedule

Fermentation schedule based off the Brulosophy lager method: Lager Method

— Leave at 53’F until fermentation is 50% (1.025) complete… 4-7 days?
— Take probe off carboy and leave wrapped in towel in chamber. Bump up chamber temp 5’F every 12 hours until it gets to 65-68’F
— Leave at this temp until fermentation is finished (4-10 more days)
— Start ramping chamber temp down 5-8’F every 12 hours until chamber is 30-32’F
— When beer is ~50’F, add gelatin (The Gelatin Effect | exBEERiment Results!)
— 1/2 tsp Knox Unflavored Gelatin with 1/4 cup cool water then microwaving it in short (7 second) bursts until it reached 145-150°F
— Leave at this temp for 3-5 days to clear.
— xfer to keg! can start drinking as soon as 3 days after kegging

Brew Specifications

  • Yeast Starter – No
  • Batch Size (Gallons)- 3.5
  • Original Gravity- 1.041
  • Final Gravity- 1.006
  • Boiling Time (Minutes)- 90
  • IBU- 30
  • Color- 2.7 SRM
  • Primary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp)- 7 days at 53’F
  • Secondary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp)- 7 days at 67’F
  • Additional Fermentation- 14 days at 33’F
  • Tasting Notes- Lots of fruit on the nose thanks to the Mosaic which turns into a classic lager flavor that lingers after you take a sip.

Changes for next time?

The beer turned out really well and was a perfect springtime patio beer. The refreshing crispness of the pilsner and lager yeast combined with the fruity impact of the Mosaic hops was an extremely pleasant combination.

If I had to change anything for next time, I would definitely double the amount of hops I used in the whirlpool and dry-hopping. While the aroma of the Mosaic was definitely there, it faded quickly and wasn’t too apparent when sipping.

Boiling my Mosaic Pilsner SMaSH
Racking my Mosaic Pilsner SMaSH to the keg after dry-hopping
A shot of my Mosaic Pilsner SMaSH. The beer was crystal clear but the pic doesn’t show that due to condensation on the glass.

Here’s a link to my BeerSmith log where you can download the recipe and view all of my notes: https://beersmithrecipes.com/viewrecipe/3297331/094-mosaic-pilsner

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