Black Rock Lager

A classic lager with well-balanced flavour and subtle bitterness.

For me summer is all about lagers, and the Black Rock Lager fitted in like an old friend I hadn’t seen for a couple of years. 

The Black Rock Lager is a flexible home beer brewing kit that will give you a high quality, very clean lager or let you stretch the flavour profile in the preferred direction of your pallet with carefully selected hops.

For this brew we went down the recipe route with the M54 Californian Lager Yeast and the Green Bullet Hops to create a depth in the flavour profile.

The result – an exceptional summer lager. 


The Finished Product

The colour was an exceptional light gold that we rated between 3-4 on the Home Brew Republic SRM Beer Colour Chart

The Green Bullet Hops, which we used as finnishing hops created a complex and sophisticated flavour profile that could have been described as musty. 

The hop forward character was very light but it connected well with the base flavour profile which was created using the same hop. What I liked was the hops gave us a nice depth to the flavour stepping our finnish away from a completely traditional lager. 

The body of the brew was very light making it a great accompaniment to a hot afternoon or evening and the brew poured with a soft white head. 

Black Rock Lager Review - Home Brew Republic Beer Kit Reviews

Our Recipe

If you like what you’re reading we’ve published the full recipe as the Home Brew Republic Recipe#3 Classic Lager. 

The Ingredients

1 x Black Rock Lager (1.7kg total)

1 x Black Rock Ultra-Light Liquid Malt Extract (1.7kg total)

1 x Mangrove M54 Jack’s Californian Lager Yeast

1 x Sachet of Mangrove Jack’s Finings or Liquid Beer Finings

30g Mangrove Jack’s Green Bullet Hops

Recipe Specs

Target ABV 4 – 4.5%

Recipe Makes: 23 Litres

Colour 4-5 (SRM): Light Gold

Bitterness (IBU): ~20

Black Rock Lager Review

Our Takeaways


For our recipe we used the Mangrove Jack’s M54 Californian Lager Yeast. The defining characteristic of this yeast is that it is capable of fermenting a lot closer to ale temperatures than traditional strains of lager yeast. This gives brewers more flexibility around when they brew lagers, especially for those brewing in ambient temperatures. With an ideal fermentation temperature range of 18-20 this yeast will be a perfect spring and autumn brewing companion, compared to most true lager strains which would be better suited to winter brewing, without temperature control.

We also found a lager recipe published by Black Rock (after the fact) that was very similar to our approach except it recommended using the SafAle US-05 yeast. Although this yeast is better suited to ales, if used it would offer the same advantages from a temperature range perspective. This yeast would also add a very soft citrus tone to the flavour profile which we think would pair very well especially with the flavours created from the Green Bullet hops during dry hopping and in the creation of the base kit.

A hint of citrus might not go a miss

While I liked this brew very much, and it was well reviewed by my friends, I couldn’t help but think a hint of citrus would set it off.

And the whole time I had cascade on my mind.

If did try this brew again (and I probably will at some stage), I would reduce the volume of Green Bullet hops from 30g down to 15g and then use a 15g packet of Mangrove Jack’s Cascade Finishing Hops.

We talked about the flavour profile having some depth. This approach would likely give it a little breadth and round it out slightly.

In short keep the same hop bill with regard to quantity for dry hopping and split it between Green Bullet and Cascade.

For those who do prefer a cleaner finish

Intentionally we introduced some hops to create a slight depth to the flavour.

When I tasted a trial glass of the brew before adding the hops on day eight of fermentation I was blown away. The flavour profile was exceptionally clean and almost compelled me to ignore dry hopping and go for straight finish.

If this is what you prefer, based on that one taste I wouldn’t hesitate to try the recipe without the dry hopping. I would also say that I was impressed with the Mangrove Jack’s M54 Californian Lager Yeast which clearly supports a very clean flavour profile.

The final word on the Black Rock Lager Review – An exceptional lager that was well received by my friends and I wouldn’t hesitate to make it again.

Given how clean the flavour profile is, there is a lot of room for brewers to tailor the final flavour profile to their preferences and create a signature brew with even a hint of flavour from dry hops.

The Black Rock Lager review takes home 8/10 from us on the Home Brew Republic Brew Quality Scale.