Heirloom Rustic Ales' Black Cauldron Dark Lager Recipe | Craft Beer & Brewing

Heirloom Rustic Ales' Black Cauldron Dark Lager Recipe

"Black Cauldron is our take on Old World dark lagers," says brewery Cofounder Jake Miller. “Most of the beers we brew at Heirloom are steeped in tradition, but we also give ourselves the freedom to explore these older styles and methods with new eyes.”



Batch size: 5 gallons (19 liters)
Brewhouse efficiency: 72%
OG: 1.052
FG: 1.012
IBUs: 28
ABV: 5.3%


3.5 lb (1.6 kg) Pilsner malt
2 lb (907 g) Vienna malt
1.5 lb (680 g) Munich 1
1.5 lb (680 g) Munich 2
1 lb (454 g) flaked rye
0.5 lb (227 g) Carafa III
0.25 lb (113 g) smoked malt


1.6 oz (45 g) Hallertau Mittelfrüh [4.0% AA] at FWH
1 oz (28 g) Hallertau Mittelfrüh [4.0% AA] at 15 minutes


We use a yeast that isn’t available to homebrewers, but we recommend using The Yeast Bay Franconian Dark Lager or Wyeast 2124 Bohemian Lager.


Mash in at 150°F (66°C) for 30 minutes with all the grains except the Carafa III and smoked malt. Before you begin your standard sparge, add the Carafa III and smoked malt to the mash and immediately start your sparge. Boil for 75 minutes, following the hops schedule. Pitch the yeast at 50°F (10°C) in an open-top fermentor (a 5-gallon bucket retrofitted with an airlock in the lid is perfect).


We ferment this beer in an open fermentor with the lid off for the first 4 to 5 days. After that, we place the lid back on the fermentor and begin to allow the temperature to rise 2°F (1°C) every day until we hit 60°F (15°C). Once fermentation is complete, we begin a slow crash to 32°F (0°C). We then transfer to another tank for extended lager aging.