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The express brewing challenge: LalBrew Voss™ in the Crash Test Brew Lab 

The express brewing challenge: LalBrew Voss™ in the Crash Test Brew Lab 
  • Can you brew a beer in less than three days with Kveik yeast? 
  • Can a pronounced dry hop make up for the lack of body in a low-alcohol beer? 
  • What about false tastes during express brewing? 

These are the questions Florian and Simon, two brewers from the Brasserie de Vaucelles (France), asked themselves. To answer them, they set themselves an audacious challenge: to brew a beer in less than 60 hours using Lallemand’s LalBrew Voss™ yeast. Their experiment, based on their inaugural MD60 project, offers a fascinating insight into the possibilities offered by this Norwegian Kveik yeast. 

The MD60: The first Crash Test Brew Lab project 

Florian and Simon’s project has been dubbed the “Crash Test Brew Lab” – a brewing laboratory where they carry out daring tests with amateur brewing equipment. You can follow their adventure on their Instagram page. The MD60 was their first experiment, and it delivered outstanding results. 

The Brewing Process 

The brewing process was meticulously planned. For the curious, we’ve detailed the steps in photos at the end of this article. Here are the key steps: 

  • The beer style: Session Hazy IPA – 3° alc. In less than three days  
  • Ingredients Natural: Florian and Simon have chosen top-quality natural ingredients for their MD60, emphasizing the purity of the raw materials. 
    For the malts, we find mainly Maris Otter for its malty aromas and “toffee” layer, and a golden blond color enhanced by a touch of Cara Blond. The rest of the bill malt is made up of flakes and wheat to provide the proteins needed for the desired creaminess. 
  • Efficient brewing: Wort cooling is a complex process for brewers. In summer, mains water is too hot to bring the wort temperature down to the fermentation temperature. With LalBrew Voss™ and its 40°C fermentation temperature, cooling at the Whirlpool outlet is faster.  
  • Express Fermentation: Kept at 40°C for 27h, the LalBrew Voss™ enabled rapid fermentation, with the beer reaching the halfway point in just 5 hours. 
  • Dry Hopping Intensive: Dry hopping was carried out after 20 hours of fermentation, when the Dffinal gravity had dropped to 2°P. For the choice of hops, no surprises with Citra and Mosaic in Cryo form. A heavy load of hops with 12g/L used! 
  • Rapid Cold Crash: The beer then underwent a 24-hour cold crash. This is the most difficult part of clarifying the beer in record time. The result is conclusive, with a visual appearance in line with expectations (see photos). 
  • Brewing time: 4h brewing + 27h fermentation + 24h Cold Crash + 2h transfer and carbonation = 57h total.   

Beer Profile 

The result was MD60, a Session Hazy IPA that stunned brewers with its exceptional flavor profile. This beer proved that the LalBrew VossTM could not only produce a beer in record time, but also offer a superb taste experience. MD60 is described as a cloudy blonde ale, typical of a Hazy IPA or NEIPA, topped with a beautiful white head. 

With our research, we found that Lalbrew Voss was the best candidate for our crazy project. The initial results we've had are very conclusive and we're going to continue our experiments.

The Zythologist’s verdict 

Luka Antonic, zythologist, brewing competition judge and owner of two craft bars ("Chez Marcel" in Arras and Noyelles-Godault), subjected the MD60 to an in-depth sensory analysis: 

  • Appearance: A cloudy blond color- typical of Hazy IPAs or NEIPAs, topped with a fine white head, though not very persistent. 
  • Nose: Intense notes of exotic, yellow and white fruits- typical of raw-hopped IPAs and NEIPAs. 
  • In the mouth - Olfactory: Beautiful, very pronounced cereal aromas, with slightly receding fruity notes. 
  • Palate - Taste: A dry beer, with little roundness and little perceived sugar. A fine acidity, probably due to the wheat is present. The bitterness is persistent and green, with no resinous overtones, and a relatively limited length on the palate. 
  • Tactile: A slender body that avoids the austerity of a watery texture, a light, thirst-quenching beer. 

Florian and Simon, with their daring first “Crash Test Brew Lab” project, remind us that beer brewing is a constantly evolving science, where innovation and creativity pave the way for new taste experiences. Stay tuned for further adventures from this creative duo, and for more experiments that will continue to push the boundaries of the brewing world. 

Published Dec 6, 2023 | Updated Dec 18, 2023

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