Recipe: Kleinesbier Light Altbier

As summer turns to autumn, here is Josh Weikert's recipe for a slimmed-down, session-strength, but still full-flavored Altbier.

Josh Weikert Sep 22, 2019 - 3 min read

Recipe: Kleinesbier Light Altbier Primary Image


Batch Size: 5 gallons (19 liters)
Brewhouse Efficiency: 72%
OG: 1.037
FG: 1.009
IBUs: 24
ABV: 3.8%


3 lb (1.36 kg) Maris Otter malt
2 lb (907 g) Pilsner malt
1.5 lb (680 g) Munich malt
4 oz (113 g) Carafa Special II
4 oz (113 g) Caramunich malt
4 oz (113 g) Briess Extra Special Roast


1.5 oz (43 g) Hallertau [4% AA] at 60 minutes
0.5 oz (14 g) Tettnang [4% AA] at 5 minutes


Wyeast 1007 (German Ale) Yeast


Mill the grains and mix with 2.3 gallons (8.6 l) of 163°F (73°C) strike water to reach a mash temperature of 152°F (67°C). Hold this temperature for 90 minutes. Vorlauf until your runnings are clear, then run off into the kettle. Sparge the grains with 5 gallons (19 l) and top up as necessary to obtain 6 gallons (23 l) of wort. Boil for 60 minutes, following the hops schedule.

After the boil, chill the wort to slightly below fermentation temperature, about 65°F (18°C). Aerate the wort with pure oxygen or filtered air and pitch the yeast.

Ferment at 68°F (20°C) for 14 days. Cold crash, and then bottle or keg the beer and carbonate to approximately 2 volumes of CO2.


This isn’t just a “session-strength” version of an altbier—it’s meant to be a leicht (light) interpretation that’s lower in ABV, body, and texture. As a result, we shy away from the kind of “rebuilding” approaches that might be common in trying to make a “session-strength” altbier that still felt like a traditional alt. In this case, we actually want a “light altbier” rather than a “low-ABV altbier!”