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Wild Cow (sort of) Kölsch

Brewed: 05/02/2020   Kegged: 05/12/2020

Wisconsin's New Glarus doesn't export beer out of state, so I don't get it very often, but wildCow.jpgI do have relatives and friends in and around Wisconsin. And, quite often when I visit, I get beer from the brewery.

Probably their most popular beer is Spotted Cow

I think Spotted Cow is stylistically unique.

I've seen it called a Cream Ale; a Farmhouse Ale; an Amber Ale; and a Kolsch. 

It isn't really any of those. 

But, regardless of what you call it, it is popular. And truth be told ... it is a great beer. Beer geeks can appreciate it, but it is also easy drinking enough for the BMC drinker to enjoy as well.

Last time I was in Wisconsin, I promised my Brother-in-Law that I'd brew a Spotted Cow Clone for my son's graduation party.

The whole COVID mess delayed my son's graduation, but close to the end of April, I still thought I'd brew something (sort of) like the beer.

I did some research. I checked out some homebrew clone books from the library. I googled. I found the Northern Brewer Speckled Heifer recipe and checked it out. Of course, I read what is on the New Glarus Spotted Cow web page.

I saw lots of recipes. And ... honestly, I don't think any of them are actually clones of the beer. 

And ... honestly ... since I don't really follow clone recipes ... I don't really care.

I came up with my own recipe taking pieces from each that I thought made the most sense. 

I don't really know how close I came.  Actually, we may never know ... because I can't do a side-by-side comparison. New Glarus doesn't export out of state.

It was an awesomely easy drinking delicious beer. And that is all I need.

For more information about this beer, see Sheppy's Blog: Wild Cow

Wild Cow --- Batch 1 (254)

Style Kölsch Batch Size 6.00 gal
Type All Grain Boil Size   8.23 gal
Brewhouse Efficiency   70.00   Boil Time   60 minutes

Recipe Characteristics

Recipe Gravity 1.044 SG Estimated FG 1.008 SG
Recipe Bitterness 21.5 IBUs (Rager) Alcohol by Volume 4.8 %
BU : GU   0.487        
Recipe Color 8.7 SRM
Measured OG:   1.041   Measured FG:   1.008 
ADF:   80    Measured ABV:   4.3% 


Amt Name Type # %/IBU Volume
8 lbs Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM) Grain 1 75.3 % 0.63 gal
1 lbs 8.0 oz Barley, Flaked (1.7 SRM) Grain 2 14.1 % 0.12 gal
1 lbs Wheat, Flaked (1.6 SRM) Grain 3 9.4 % 0.08 gal
2.0 oz Midnight Wheat Malt (550.0 SRM) Grain 4 1.2 % 0.01 gal
0.500 oz Magnum [12.00 %] - Boil 40.0 min Hop 5 16.5 IBUs -
1.00 tsp Yeast Nutrient (Boil 15.0 mins) Other 6 - -
1.000 oz Cluster [8.30 %] - Boil 5.0 min Hop 7 5.0 IBUs -
1.0 pkg Kolsch Yeast (Wyeast Labs #2565) [124.21 ml] Yeast 8 - -

Mash Profile

Mash Steps
Name Description Step Temperature Step Time
Mash In Add 13.28 qt of water at 159.1 F 148.0 F 75 min

Batch sparge with 2 steps (5.85gal, 0.34gal) of 168.0 F water

Recipe Notes
Make a 6 cup starter a day or two ahead of brew day.
Follow mashing and boiling times as directed in recipe.
After boil, chill to 58F.
Ferment two days at 60F. Let rise after 2 days.
After 2 weeks, keg and carbonate.

Brewing Record

Brew Date:   Strike Temp:  
Mash Temps:  
Pre-boil OG   (1.036 SG)   Pre-boil Vol   (8.23 gal)
Actual Mash Efficiency   Pitch Temp    
Day 1: 
Day ... 
Day ... 

Brewing Notes:
04/28/2020 esheppy
Picked up ingredients today.
05/02/2020 esheppy
Made starter yesterday. Brewing with the Beer Model today. Big Brew Day.
05/03/2020 esheppy
Brew day went well. OG is 1.041. Fermentation started going by night time. Using the anvil cooling to hold at 58 to begin with.
05/04/2020 esheppy
Fermentation is going well. Rather than ice right into the cooler, I'm putting bottles filled with ice in. This seems to be holding 60 degrees real well. Going to rise the temp to 62 today.
05/05/2020 esheppy
Bubbling slowing down. Set the anvil controller to 64.
05/06/2020 esheppy
Bubbling pretty much stopped. Set the controller to 65. Will probably just remove temp control tomorrow.
05/08/2020 esheppy
Let it go through the day cooled to 65. Then turned off cooling pump.
05/12/2020 esheppy
Kegged. Not sure if this actually matches Spotted Cow, but this is exactly what I imagined this beer should be. Might be a bit dark in color, but flavor is perfect. 1.008.
05/16/2020 esheppy
Tried a pour from the keg. Love the flavor. Need to shake co2 into solution. Would like to see a little less cloudiness. Delicious 😋
05/17/2020 esheppy
So yummy. 😋 Shook in CO2. 30 psi for 4 or 5 songs.
05/19/2020 esheppy
Ideally this would have a little more carbonation. Certainly darker than Spotted Cow. Love the flavor. Wish I had Spotted Cow to see how close it tastes.
05/26/2020 esheppy
Yesterday, my little CO2 tank ran out, and pressure in this keg was pretty low. So, I topped off the pressure from my kegerator CO2 tank. Moving the keg stirred up trub and the beer become very hazy until it settled. I think if I do this beer again, I might shoot for a clearer beer.
06/13/2020 esheppy
Well ... Doesn't look like a spotted cow. Very clear and darker in color. Love the flavor, though. Next time I make this, I'll probably remove midnight wheat.
06/22/2020 esheppy
Took keg camping, and it blew on first night. Bummer. Delicious beer, though. Will have to make it again.
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