Today's brew will be a rye beer, a Roggenmünchner Dunkles. Rye with Vienna malt was excellent, rye with Pilsner malt was underwhelming, so now I'm trying rye with Munich malt. 5# of Weyermann rye malt with 6# of Weyermann Light Munich.
I'm thinking that the rye pilsner was so tasteless because of my mash procedure. Because of previous mash problems with the beta glucans tying up so much water and creating a very sticky mash, I mashed most of the rye with a little bit of pilsner malt and left it for a 30 minute beta glucanase rest followed by a 40 minute saccharification rest. Then I added the rest of the pilsner malt and a little bit more rye and added tap water to get back down to around 100 degrees for another 30 minute beta glucanase rest, followed by a 60 minute saccharification rest at 152F.
This was based on what I read about Markus Hermann's mash schedule for hefeweizens here: http://braukaiser.com/wiki/index.php?title=The_Theory_of_Mashing I used that mash procedure for both my last Hefeweizen and the rye pilsner, and both beers were underwhelming, which other tasters agreed on as well.
So today I think I'll go back to a standard double infusion mash. I'll mash in all the grist at around 104 for the beta glucanase rest, and probably let it sit for at least 30-45 minutes. Previously I'd only been waiting 15 minutes, and I think that's way too short. I really don't want a huge gelatinous clump of grain, so I'm thinking 30-45 minutes is the way to go. We'll see. Then I'll shoot for 154-155 for the saccharification. My best ryes were at 155 and 158, with the last one at 152 ending up too thin. I really enjoy the syrupy thickness of a good rye beer.