Dusseldorf Altbier – All Grain


General Info

My interpretation of the classic Dusseldorf style Alt. Intended to have a good balance of malt and hop bitterness. Perfect for an evening by the campfire. Style calls for a lagering period after fermentation.

I entered this into the Foam on the Range annual competition. From what the judges said (see the reviews below), it was a good beer, but not a Dusseldorf Alt. Generally, it was too dark and too malty for a Dusseldorf.

But what is it? Maybe a North German Alt? I honestly don’t know, and the judges didn’t give any suggestion as to style. I tweaked the recipe a bit to be more stylistically accurate - as a North German Alt. Live and learn.


Brewed on a picture perfect Friday evening in early summer. Racked to primary and took a gravity reading...surprisingly, a bit higher than expected. I’m excited about this one ? looked good, smelled good while perculating. I really haven’t tasted this style before. I’ll compare when this one is ready.

Substituted Libery for Spalt hops. Brew store was out of Spalt (June 29, 2007).

Racked to secondary (July 9, 2007).

Racked to keg and began lagering process (July 28, 2007).

Malts and Grains

Amount Malt/Grain %
2.00 pounds German Light Munich Malt 19.5%
1.50 pounds German Wheat Malt Light 14.6%
0.25 pounds German Carafa III 2.4%
2.00 pounds German Vienna Malt 19.5%
4.50 pounds German Pilsen Malt (2-Row) 43.9%
10.25 pounds Total Grain Weight 100%


Amount Hop Time AA
1.50 ounces Liberty 60 min 4.0%
0.50 ounces Liberty 20 min 4.0%
1.00 ounces Saaz 5 min 2.5%
3.00 ounces Total Hop Weight


Name Lab/Manufacturer Form Amount
Dusseldorf Alt (WLP036) White Labs Liquid 35 ml.

Mash Infusion

Step Description Temp. Time
Dough In Acclimate grains. 154° F 5 min.
Infusion Single infusion mash. 154° F 60 min.
Sparge Batch sparge in two phases: 2.25 gallons each. 168° F 40 min.


  • Single infusion mash or step infusion mash
  • If single infusion:
    • Mash for 60 minutes at 152°
  • If step infusion:
    • Add 2.5 gallons of water and mash at 135° for 30 minutes
    • Add 1.5 gallons of near-boiling water to raise the temperature to 155°; mash another 30 minutes
  • Sparge with 3.75 - 4.0 gallons of 168° water
  • Total boil time: 75 minutes
    • Add first round of hops at boil (bittering)
    • Add second round of hops at 45 minutes (flavor)
    • Add Irish Moss at 45 minutes
  • Cool wort to 70-75°
  • Pitch yeast
  • Cold condition for at least four weeks (the key to this style is cold condiditoning).

Fermentation and Aging

10 days @ 65° F
18 days @ 65° F
28 days @ 39° F

ALTernate Universe

Date Brewed:  

Brew Day Data

  Target Actual Notes
Strike Water Amount: 3.4    
Strike Water Temperature:      
Mash Temperature(s):      
Mash Time:      
Sparge Water Amount: 4.5    
Sparge Water Temperature:      
Pre-Boil Gravity:      
Pre-Boil Amount: 5.8    
Post-Boil Amount: 5.25    
Boil Time: 60    
OG: 1.054 / 13.3° P    
Mash PH:      
Boil PH:      

Printed using BrewBlogger 3.0.0, brewing log software for PHP and MySQL, available at http://www.brewblogger.net.