Author Topic: I am new to lager  (Read 8537 times)

Offline morticaixavier

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Re: I am new to lager
« Reply #15 on: December 13, 2011, 12:52:49 PM »
Got it.  Makes sense.

So, no danger of off-flavors from sitting on the yeast too long, like I was always warned about in ales?

doesn't really seem to be a practical problem for the homebrewer. at least not until you get to a very long timeframe (think many months). The risk of removing the beer from the yeast before the yeast has had time to clean up and added risk of contamination/oxidation is more of an issue to the homebrewer.
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: I am new to lager
« Reply #16 on: December 13, 2011, 01:07:47 PM »
Got it.  Makes sense.

So, no danger of off-flavors from sitting on the yeast too long, like I was always warned about in ales?

doesn't really seem to be a practical problem for the homebrewer. at least not until you get to a very long timeframe (think many months). The risk of removing the beer from the yeast before the yeast has had time to clean up and added risk of contamination/oxidation is more of an issue to the homebrewer.
Right, I think it's safe to assume it is not a problem until you experience it.  I never have.  Oxidation and contamination on the other hand . . .
Tom Schmidlin

Offline hairyhood

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Re: I am new to lager
« Reply #17 on: December 13, 2011, 01:15:09 PM »
Sounds like a plan....easier too.  Just out of curiosity....do either of you move your ales to a secondary?

Online denny

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Re: I am new to lager
« Reply #18 on: December 13, 2011, 01:26:49 PM »
Got it.  Makes sense.

So, no danger of off-flavors from sitting on the yeast too long, like I was always warned about in ales?

It's not particular to lagers.  Ales very seldom need a secondary, either.
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Offline Kit B

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Re: I am new to lager
« Reply #19 on: December 13, 2011, 02:06:26 PM »
One thing of note...
If you use kegs for your secondary & are at all impatient...
It is possible that you'll start "sampling" before the adequate lagering phase is complete.

But, maybe that's just me...
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Offline morticaixavier

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Re: I am new to lager
« Reply #20 on: December 13, 2011, 02:10:19 PM »
Sounds like a plan....easier too.  Just out of curiosity....do either of you move your ales to a secondary?

My experience is entirely from ales. so yeah I skip secondary on ales as well ;D

The exceptions being if i am going to dry hop (although I will often just do that in the keg), add fruit or, like with a strong ale, want to bulk age for a really long time and that is mainly because I don't like to leave the ale in plastic too long as I don't trust it to not pass o2 into the beer. I guess aging in a barrel could count as secondary as well.
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: I am new to lager
« Reply #21 on: December 13, 2011, 02:16:25 PM »
Got it.  Makes sense.

So, no danger of off-flavors from sitting on the yeast too long, like I was always warned about in ales?

It's not particular to lagers.  Ales very seldom need a secondary, either.
Same here, I very rarely secondary ales.  I can't remember the last time I did.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline hairyhood

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Re: I am new to lager
« Reply #22 on: December 13, 2011, 02:23:34 PM »
I'll have to give it a shot.  I have always put my ales in a secondary. 

I will post this as another thread when I am ready to go, but....I just aquired a 5 gallon whiskey barrel.  Anybody have any tips on barrel aging?  Anything as far as preparation of the barrel?  Sanitation?  I am not planning on using for souring...at least not in the beginning.

Offline morticaixavier

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Re: I am new to lager
« Reply #23 on: December 13, 2011, 02:28:59 PM »
I'll have to give it a shot.  I have always put my ales in a secondary. 

I will post this as another thread when I am ready to go, but....I just aquired a 5 gallon whiskey barrel.  Anybody have any tips on barrel aging?  Anything as far as preparation of the barrel?  Sanitation?  I am not planning on using for souring...at least not in the beginning.

If it's a fairly fresh dump then no prep is required. just rack into it and let it ride. Be aware that small barrels will impart oaky charcter quite quickly (a couple of days potentially) so start tasting early and be ready to package.

One important note is that you NEVER NEVER NEVER want to use a sulphur stick on a barrel that recently held spirits. It will, at very least, burst into flame in a very interesting way.
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: I am new to lager
« Reply #24 on: December 13, 2011, 02:41:56 PM »
I recently filled a bourbon barrel and the beer (RIS) had enough character after 3 days.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline hairyhood

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Re: I am new to lager
« Reply #25 on: December 13, 2011, 02:54:13 PM »
Thanks.  Those are good tips.  I did know about the sulpher stick....but thanks for the reminder.  That would not be fun.

Also good to know that you seemed to get enough character after just a few days.  I would have probably gone a week before tasting.  Can you just keep reusing these barrels?....and if so, is there anything that needs to be done in between uses.  I have read many conflicting ideas on storing.

Offline morticaixavier

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Re: I am new to lager
« Reply #26 on: December 13, 2011, 02:59:04 PM »
Thanks.  Those are good tips.  I did know about the sulpher stick....but thanks for the reminder.  That would not be fun.

Also good to know that you seemed to get enough character after just a few days.  I would have probably gone a week before tasting.  Can you just keep reusing these barrels?....and if so, is there anything that needs to be done in between uses.  I have read many conflicting ideas on storing.

I intende to reuse my barrel! for $50 I hope I can reuse it. After the first batch you can rinse it out with hot water and refill. You can probably store it for a short while with a bottle of whisky dumped into it but if you go to long it will either dry out and you will have to soak it to make it water tight again or make it into a planter. eventually you will get an infection, if you are lucky it will be a nice infection (or you can, at some point add your own bugs and make sure it's a nice infection) and at some point after that it will turn to vinegar then you can make vinegar!
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Offline davidgzach

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Re: I am new to lager
« Reply #27 on: December 14, 2011, 07:18:38 AM »
Just reading through.  I recently pitched a gallon starter (decanted) in to a Winter Ale (1.072) which was bubbling in 4 hours and turned my blow off container brown with Krausen.  If you pitch the correct amount of yeast your lagers can very much look like an ale fermenting.  +1 on higher temps giving shorter lag time.

You would have to leave the yeast on the cake for a looong time for autolysis to start if you used a quality yeast, especially for a lager.  Keep it on the cake and let the yeasties do their thing.  If you produced a lot of esters, your only potential remedy is time.  If you produced acetaldehyde, you can try to blow it out with a couple of swirls or by purging a few times if kegged.  You have probably produced diacetyl.  What yeast did you use?  I would bring it up to 65F for 2-3 days at the end of fermentation.

I haven't used a secondary in several years.  Your best bet is to start kegging!  That's a great secondary.....

Jealous on the whiskey barrel.  Where did you guys buy them?

Dave
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Offline hairyhood

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Re: I am new to lager
« Reply #28 on: December 14, 2011, 07:38:32 AM »
I used WLP800.  I am actually making a Munich Dunkel.  It came in higher than expected 1.062.  I was using WLP833 in a gallon starter.  The starter was still after almost a day at room temp (around 70), so I figured the yeast was bad.  I was already brewing at that point, so I got the mash going and ran to my home brew shop (a satellite shop with a stripped down inventory).  All they had was WLP800....so, I took the vial they had and pitched it when done.

I am down to about 52 degrees now and fermentation looks good.  I plan to bring it down to a little below 50 and leave it there.  I will do the rest to hopefully eat up that diacetyl. 

I do keg, but have never used them as a secondary.  I was transferring to a 5 gallon carboy after fermentation was complete.  I will have to think about just using the kegs.

My barrel came from one of my local breweries here in Florida.  There is a small 2-person outfit in Central Florida making whiskey.  They have been selling them to the brewer here, so I just asked him to get me one.  I don't know where you are, but check witha local brewer there if you have any breweries around.  They will probably have a line on one. 

Offline davidgzach

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Re: I am new to lager
« Reply #29 on: December 14, 2011, 07:54:54 AM »
Thanks for the tip on the barrel.  I'll definitely chase that one down.

Taste your hydrometer sample when you check next for FG or when you keg if you just leave it in primary.  If it tastes like green apples, that's acetaldehyde.  Try purging your keg once a week for a few weeks.  If it tastes like imitation butter, that's the diacetyl.  Let it warm up for a few days again.  If fruity/estery, let it sit and pray.......

Good luck!

Dave
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