German Fest Bier (Helles) - Homebrew recipe

In Munich, the beer styles are very controlled by law. This beer is higher in alcohol than a standard helles, but not quite at Oktoberfest alcohol levels. It is a great homebrew beer recipe for those who want a little more kick in their beer. Great for summer, but made for the fall festival season, it is really great homebrew anytime.

I am also becoming lazier in my brewing and have decided to not use a mash-out and simply fly sparge. Basically I recirculate the wort like normal until it is clear and then let the sparge begin. This cuts some time off of the day at the expense of mash efficiency. I am figuring on about 65 – 70% efficiency so I buy an extra pound of grain for a five gallon batch. No biggie, this is homebrew beer and if you don’t like it, make your own homebrew however you want.

This is also a good example of using what you have. I used a very non-German hop, Amarillo, because it was sitting in my freezer. The good thing about most German beers is that you can get away with no aroma or flavor hops and the citrusy bits in the Amarillo hop won’t matter for bittering. Lesson: Use what you have, it is only homebrew.

Recipe Details

Batch Size Boil Time IBU SRM Est. OG Est. FG ABV
5 gal 60 min 17.8 IBUs 3.7 SRM 1.053 SG 1.012 SG 5.4 %

Style Details

Name Cat. OG Range FG Range IBU SRM Carb ABV
Munich Helles 1 D 1.045 - 1.051 1.008 - 1.012 16 - 22 3 - 5 2.3 - 2.7 4.7 - 5.4 %


Name Amount %
Pilsner (2 Row) Ger 10 lbs 90.91
Carafoam 1 lbs 9.09


Name Amount Time Use Form Alpha %
Amarillo Gold 1 oz 60 min Boil Pellet 5.3


Name Lab Attenuation Temperature
SafLager West European Lager (S-23) DCL/Fermentis 74% 46°F - 50°F


Step Temperature Time
Mash In 150°F 75 min
Recipe Type
Experience Level