Pilsner Urquell National Award-Winning Clone (Decoction and Non-Decoction Version) Beer Recipe | All Grain Czech Premium Pale Lager by Lil' Wheaty's | Brewer's Friend
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Pilsner Urquell National Award-Winning Clone (Decoction and Non-Decoction Version)

168 calories 17.6 g 12 oz
Beer Stats
Method: All Grain
Style: Czech Premium Pale Lager
Boil Time: 90 min
Batch Size: 6 gallons (fermentor volume)
Pre Boil Size: 7.5 gallons
Post Boil Size: 6 gallons
Pre Boil Gravity: 1.041 (recipe based estimate)
Post Boil Gravity: 1.051 (recipe based estimate)
Efficiency: 81% (brew house)
Source: Lil' Wheaty's Original
5.00 (2 Reviews)

Calories: 168 calories (Per 12oz)
Carbs: 17.6 g (Per 12oz)
Created: Sunday November 2nd 2014
Amount Fermentable Cost PPG °L Bill %
10 lb German - Pilsner10 lb Pilsner 38 1.6 100%
10 lbs / 0.00
Amount Variety Cost Type AA Use Time IBU Bill %
1.50 oz Saaz1.5 oz Saaz Hops Pellet 3.5 Boil 90 min 17.58 27.3%
2 oz Saaz2 oz Saaz Hops Pellet 3.5 Boil 20 min 13.27 36.4%
1 oz Saaz1 oz Saaz Hops Pellet 3.5 Boil 10 min 3.97 18.2%
1 oz Saaz1 oz Saaz Hops Pellet 3.5 Boil 0 min 18.2%
5.50 oz / 0.00
Mash Guidelines
Amount Description Type Start Temp Target Temp Time
4.4 gal Protein Rest - Pull the first decoction when finished Temperature -- 125 °F 15 min
4.4 gal Beta Rest - Add the first decoction back, aiming for a temperature of 148F. Hold this rest for 30min, then pull the second decoction Decoction -- 148 °F 30 min
4.4 gal Alpha Rest - Add the second decoction back, aiming for a rest temperature of 158F. Hold at this temperature for 30min Decoction -- 158 °F 30 min
4.4 gal Mash Out - Raise the temperature to 167F and hold for 10min Temperature -- 167 °F 10 min
3.9 gal Sparge - Sparge as usual after mash Temperature -- 170 °F 30 min
Starting Mash Thickness: 1.75 qt/lb
Other Ingredients
Amount Name Cost Type Use Time
6 ml Lactic acid Water Agt Mash 90 min.
0.50 tsp Irish Moss Fining Boil 15 min.
0.30 ml Lactic acid Water Agt Sparge 30 min.
Wyeast - Czech Pils 2278
1 Each
Attenuation (custom):
Optimum Temp:
50 - 58 °F
Fermentation Temp:
56 °F
Pitch Rate:
1.5 (M cells / ml / ° P) 430 B cells required
0.00 Yeast Pitch Rate and Starter Calculator
Method: co2       CO2 Level: 2.25 Volumes
Target Water Profile
Lil' Wheaty's Brewing Water
Ca+2 Mg+2 Na+ Cl- SO4-2 HCO3-
100 18 20 45 105 235
Lactic acid added to augment a mash pH of ~ 5.3.
Mash Chemistry and Brewing Water Calculator

Double Decoction:

Note: Pilsner Urquell uses a triple decoction method with an initial acid rest, but I use well enough modified malts and correct for pH already so the first of three decoctions is unnecessary. The decoction measurements below are ones I developed for an electric system and err on the side of caution, so they are the lower amounts needed to potentially reach the next temperature step and direct heat can be applied to compensate.

Perform a protein rest at 125F for 15min, then pull off slightly less than 1/3 (1.16gal/4.4L) of the thickest mash and place it in a separate pot. Bring the pot slowly up to 158F and hold for 15min, then slowly bring it up to a boil and proceed to boil for 10min. Stir often so the grains do not burn, but try to allow some 'browning' to help darken the colour and enhance the flavour/aroma profiles. Add the decoction back to the 125F mash, little by little, aiming for a beta rest temperature of 148F. Hold this temperature for 30min while adding back any leftover decoction (if any) as it cools. After this has finished, pull off roughly 1/6 (0.7gal/2.6L) of the thickest mash a second time and place it in the separate pot. Slowly bring the pot up to a boil and continue to boil for 10min. Add the second decoction back to the mash, little by little, aiming for an alpha rest temperature of 158F. Hold this temperature for 30min while adding back any leftover decoction (if any) as it cools. Once this rest has finished, raise the temperature up to a mash out rest of 167F and hold for 10min. After the decoctions and mash out are finished proceed to sparge/lauter as usual.

No Decoction:

Instead of the labour intensive double decoction mash schedule you could:

  • Substitute some of the pilsner malt for vienna and/or munich to add colour and depth.
  • Include some melanoidin malt for a slight decoction 'feel'.
  • Add some carapils malt (or your preferred alternative) for improved head retention.
  • After which, just carry out a temperature/infusion mash schedule based on your preferences.

    This beer won a national silver medal at the Saskatoon Headhunters Competition (2017) and has consistently scored 40's at other national competitions.

    *With the regular 3.5%AA Saaz the hop additions are 1.5oz @ 90min, 2oz @ 20min, 1oz @ 10min, 1oz @ 0min.

Award Winning Recipe
Recipe Picture
Last Updated and Sharing
Recipe QR Code
  • Public: Yup, Shared
  • Last Updated: 2019-08-18 19:45 UTC
Discussion about this recipe:
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Brewer profile picture
koma 01/09/2018 at 08:36pm
5 of 5

Just brewed a modified version of this recipe today, following the double-decoction mash schedule. I have lived in the Czech Republic for almost 10 years now, and am finally brewing my first Czech Pilsner... but I have to say, this recipe/process echoes all of the tips and advice I have heard about brewing Czech lagers from Czech brewers and homebrewers. If followed correctly, this recipe will likely get you as close to a Czech Pilsner as you can get without coming to the Czech Republic! Nice work putting this together, and I'm looking forward to the results!

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Kraft Deaner 10/05/2020 at 03:43am
How long should it ferment for?

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Robby 12/13/2020 at 06:09pm
5 of 5

I've been using basically this recipe for several years when doing a Czech Pilsner. I use a bit less Saaz hops (Czech) and I alwas use Czech malt and White labs Czech Budajovice yeast. I understand that Pilsner Uquell uses a different yeast, but I much prefer this one.

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Serkan 01/11/2022 at 07:28pm
Is there any Safale yeast very close to your choose "Wyeast - Czech Pils 2278" ?

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LukasT 07/07/2023 at 11:23am
How long do you usually mash for in total?

What I mean is that while you're heating your decoction the main mash is still doing its thing at the previous temp.

I guess what I'm trying to figure out is how long it should take me to bring my decoctions to the boil?

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