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October 17, 2019

Japanese Rice Lager

Japanese Rice Lager Homebrew

This might be the tastiest homebrew beer we've ever made. We wanted to mimic a traditional Japanese beer such as Asahi or Sapporo. Honestly, the results blew us away. If you're looking for a unique light lager that loosely resembles commercial beers made with rice, but is a heck of a lot better, this is it. It was also a super nice day when we brewed this beer so we made it in Kyle's backyard using our 10 gallon home brew system. Here are the full recipe details.

Full Japanese Rice Lager Recipe and Brew Day Video

Water Chemistry

We started with 7 gallons (26.5 liters) of Asheville city water. We added a gram of Gypsum to ours, but this will be different for everyone depending on your water.

10 minutes into the mash we checked our pH.

inserting probes to test pH

Inserting probes to test pH

We were looking for something in the range of 5.2 - 5.4. We had a pH of 5.2 without having to add any lactic or citric acid.

ph at 5.2

Grains

We used 4 pounds (1.81 kilograms) of white rice, 5 pounds (2.27 kg) of pilsner malt, and 8 ounces (227 grams) of acid malt. The acid malt helped drop our pH into the desired range, which is part of the reason we didn't have to adjust chemistry any further.

cooked rice

We crushed our rice and then cooked it

ground up pilsner and acid malt

We also crushed our pilsner and acid malt

Mash

We mashed at 158 degrees Fahrenheit for 60 minutes. For our European friends, that's 70c.

malt and rice together in the mash

The contents of our mash on a wooden spoon we used to stir it with

putting spent grain in a compost pile

A compost pile is a perfect place for your spent grain to go after the mash

Hops

We exclusively used Sorachi Ace hops in this beer. This hop variety is the same hop used in Sapporo beer and has a high percentage of alpha acids along with a lemon flavor and aroma.

sorachi ace hop package

We added .4 ounces (11.33 grams) at 60 minutes and then 1.6 ounces (45.4 grams) as a whirlpool addition.

Yeast and Fermentation

Yeast: We used two packs of Saflager W-34/70 dry lager yeast.

pitching yeast

Pitching yeast

Fermentation: 10 days at 55 degrees Fahrenheit. (12.77C).

After 10 days we warmed it up to 70 degrees Fahrenheit for a 3 day dialectal rest. (21.11C)

We lagered it for about two months at 35 degrees Fahrenheit (1.66C).

Tasting

The beer finished with a low ABV of 3.8% and was extremely crushable. It turned out really light, really crisp, and really smooth, all with a bit of hop character up front. pouring finished beerThe rice also came through as well. This beer left us wondering why every light lager made with rice couldn't taste this good. We highly recommend you brew this beer at home, we may keep it on tap all the time now.

  • FLAKED RICE CAN DO THE JOB AND YOU CAN JUST ADD IT STRAIGHT TO THE MASH I BELIEVE

    Posted by Chris on May 26, 2020
  • JUST WONDERING IF YOU CAN USE mINUTE RICE AND NO COOKING. i USE MINUTE RICE ALL THE TIME IN MY LIGHT LAGERS.

    Posted by Craig on February 10, 2020
  • JUST WONDERING IF YOU CAN USE mINUTE RICE AND NO COOKING. i USE MINUTE RICE ALL THE TIME IN MY LIGHT LAGERS.

    Posted by Craig on February 07, 2020
  • Hey guys just wondering if you have an overall profile for the water. I’m in Boston and want to know what to add to make it right. Thanks

    Posted by JOe ROoney on December 26, 2019
  • Did you intentionally undercook the rice? I’m doing the math and you should have used 1.4 gallons of water to cook 4lb of rice and there definitely isn’t 1.4 gallons on Kyle’s stove top. Thanks.

    Posted by deBREWler on October 21, 2019
  • Just wanted to point out an error in the metric units for the acid malt; 8oz is 227g, not 28.3g

    Posted by Ed on October 21, 2019

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