Freds Garden Alt

This is a 1999 BJCP style 24 experimental beer with a base style of 8c. What makes this beer experimental is that it is being brewed using an adjunct of toasted, unmalted wheat grown in the downtown Chicago back yard garden of my coworker, Fred.

Recipe: Northern German Altbier
Volume: 5 gallons

Activity Log

Yeast Starter:

72 hrs before brew, boiled 2 oz of pale malt extract in 20 oz of water in flask for 10 minutes. Cooled in ice water bath in a bowl. Pitched vial of yeast and fitted stopper and airlock.


Modified my new 10 gallon cooler with a false bottom so fittings would not disengage from spicket with heat and stirring. Preheated with 2 quarts of hot tap water. Drained and infused 4 gallons of 168 f water onto grain. Mashed for 30 minutes at 150 f. Iodine test showed conversion complete. Began to recirculate and found that something was still wrong with my cooler/false bottom setup causing flow to stop after only a quart. Reverted to bucket/easymash screen setup. Recirculated until relatively clear. Sparged with 4 gallons of 170 f water until 6 1/2 gallons reached in brewpot.


Boiled through first break then added bittering hops. Used boiling bag for hops to avoid stoppage problems during siphon into fermenter. Boiled for 40 minutes then aded flavoring hops. Boiled for 15 more minutes then added aroma hops. Added cooling coil for the last 10 minutes of the 60 minute boil to sterilize. Cooled to ~75 f and siphoned to fermenter. Took original gravity reading of 1.054. Aerated by rocking carboy on folded towel and pitched yeast starter. Fitted stopper with airlock and put on fermenting bench.


Observations of primary stage (9 PM start): Transferred to 5 gallon carboy and fitted with stopper and airlock.


Siphoned a 2 liter bottle 4/5 full, squeezed the air out and forced carbonated. Took FG reading of 1.013 which puts the alcohol content at about 5.3% ABV. Boiled 5 oz of corn sugar in 2 cups of water for 10 minutes and cooled pan with ice bath in bowl. Placed sugar solution in bottling bucket and siphoned from secondary into bottling bucket. Filled and capped 41 12 oz bottles.

See Freds Garden Alt labels here.