Mo(tel)gaarden Wit Beer

Hoegaarden was one of the amazing Belgian beers that I was introduced to by my beer-mentor neighbour. It ws unlike anything I have ever tasted. A bit sour, slightly sweet, slightly spicy and with a wild “fermenty” sort of flavour that you don’t get in mass-market lagers. It was pretty much certain that I was going to brew this style once I got brewing.

This was originally a pre-Grainfather recipe, brewed using my trusty Brew in a Bag rig. It was brewed in the sunny courtyard of my parents’ motels.

Pre-Boil Gravity: 1.053 SG
Original Gravity: 1.055 SG
Final Gravity: 1.012 SG
ABV: 5.7%
Colour: 25 EBC
BU:GU Ratio: 0.5

Mash water: 20L
Sparge water: 13L

Grain (total: 5.92kg):
Pilsner Malt 2.6 kg (44)%
Unmalted Wheat 2.6 kg (44%)
Uncle Toby’s Rolled Oats 600g (10%)
German CaraMunich I 120g (2.0%)

17g Nelson Sauvin 11.8% (25 IBU) @ 60 min
Styrian Golding hops are traditional, but it doesn’t matter too much. Go with what you have handy.

Other tasty bits:
Orange peel – 60g @ 15 mins
Coriander seed – 15g @ 15 mins
Camomile tea – 1 teabag’s worth @ 5 min (I emptied the tea out directly into the kettle)

Mash in at 50°C and rest for for 20 mins
Raise temperature to 67°C and rest for 60 mins
Raise to 75°C, hold for 10 mins and mash out.

Sparge and boil for 60 mins

Ferment at 22°C with WLP400 Belgian Wit (you can use WB-06 in a pinch, but it will taste way different). Use Marshall Schott’s Ale schedule on your upgraded STC-1000, or give it a week and a half (or until you hit your final gravity. No need for a cold-crash with this beer!

I based this recipe on the one from Jamil Zainasheff’s excellent book Brewing Classic Styles.

3 Responses to “Mo(tel)gaarden Wit Beer”

  1. Ralph Wesseling

    Just a quick question,

    I notice in many recipes you will not include the amount of grams of the hops.

    e.g., NZ Nelson Sauvin 25 IBU @ 60 min

    Am I missing something? How do I determine how much hops to add?

    • Ralph Wesseling

      If possible can you let me know the weight of the hops?

      NZ Nelson Sauvin 25 IBU @ 60 min

    • Karl

      Do you use brewing software?

      The amount of hops will vary with the % Alpha Acids. If you use the same weight of hops that I did, but the %AA are different, then you will get different IBUs from them. I used 18g of 11.2% Nelson Sauvin. If the %AA of your batch is higher than mine, then you’ll need to use a little less and if your %AA is lower then you’ll need to use a little more. Brewing software works this all out and tells you how many grams of hops to add at the %AA you have to get your desired IBUs.

      Go with 18g and it’ll still work out, it might just be a little different to my batch. This isn’t a bad thing because we’re home-brewers so our batches can be different and it doesn’t matter 🙂


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