Author Topic: White Labs Zurich Lager yeast WLP885  (Read 2147 times)

Offline jmcamerlengo

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White Labs Zurich Lager yeast WLP885
« on: February 07, 2012, 10:00:56 AM »
Anybody have any experience with Zurich Lager yeast? I pitched 2 vials into a 5L stir plate starter the other day and yesterday the thing had krausen all the way up to the top and the yeast were going to town.  I plan on pitching this into a 1.087 OG Baltic Porter Im brewing this weekend, what kind of temps does this thing like? Closer to the 50 range or more like 53? Its a new yeast for me and have used Bavarian Lager successfully in baltic porter before at 53. Thought Id give this one a shot, any experiences?
Jason
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Offline dbeechum

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Re: White Labs Zurich Lager yeast WLP885
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2012, 10:46:48 AM »
My best luck with the Zurich was at 50 in a Sami clone I worked on, but the biggest key to success was a starter beer. I made 5 gallons of a 1.055ish Schwarzbier and then pitched the cake into the 1.140 Sami clone. Worked like a charm.

the one time I tried to do it straight from a starter - no luck.
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Offline jmcamerlengo

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Re: White Labs Zurich Lager yeast WLP885
« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2012, 10:49:14 AM »
According to MrMalty 2 vials in 5L of wort on a stir plate should be plenty of cells, hopefully thats the case! I love Duck Rabbit Baltic Porter and it seems like that beer has some significant esters going on, theres so much going on in that beer its hard to tell whats  coming from where. I wonder if they go into the warmer range of lager fermenting or into a colder range with ale yeast.
Jason
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Offline Malticulous

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Re: White Labs Zurich Lager yeast WLP885
« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2012, 07:29:22 PM »
That should be over 30 million cells per milliliter into five gallons. That's a crap load of yeast.

Offline pyrite

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Re: White Labs Zurich Lager yeast WLP885
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2012, 09:56:27 PM »
I've used WLP Zurich Lager yeast for the past three season, since it's a seasonal strain.  Currently I've used it on the past 4 brews, by using the yeast cake from the previous batches. I ferment at 44F and hold it there for 1 week.  After the 1st week I slowly raise the temp to 47 and hold for the reminder of the 2 weeks and the yeast handles those temp like a champ.  From my experience with this strain I think the optimal temp range for this yeast is holding at 47F.  I've always stayed under 47F during the first two weeks with this stain and the yeast ferments out in those 2 weeks. The first two batches I made this season were Oktoberfest beers with an OG of about 1.058 and the last two have been pilsners with an OG of 1.037- 1.043.  The first batch produced significant amounts of fruity esters but it could have been attributed either to an initial low yest cell count (I used a pretty big started so IDK) or more than likely which I suspect was a 5 degree temp change.

I've noticed that the yeast throws out major fruity esters even when the the temp fluctuates by 5 degree in the first two weeks of fermentation.  In my process I've have always had to give it a D-rest.

I personally think this yeast strain is yummy with malty bock style beers. However, the light pilsener I racked last weekend was exceptional.   
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Offline realbeerguy

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Re: White Labs Zurich Lager yeast WLP885
« Reply #5 on: February 08, 2012, 08:32:11 AM »
My best luck with the Zurich was at 50 in a Sami clone I worked on, but the biggest key to success was a starter beer. I made 5 gallons of a 1.055ish Schwarzbier and then pitched the cake into the 1.140 Sami clone. Worked like a charm.

the one time I tried to do it straight from a starter - no luck.

Drew speaks the troof.  Same here with my Sami clone.  You should be ok with a lower OG Baltic Porter.
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Offline jmcamerlengo

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Re: White Labs Zurich Lager yeast WLP885
« Reply #6 on: February 08, 2012, 08:50:54 AM »
Cool, My OG is going to be around 1.087.

So I think Im going to pitch at 44 and ramp to 47 pretty quickly.  I do want some fruity esters in this thing. Maybe after the initial week Ill take it up to 50 or so then hold for a week and do a D-rest after 2 weeks. Then secondary lager for a couple more weeks before kegging and aging for 6 months or so.
Jason
-Head Brewer, Brewtus Brewers in the Shenango Valley. Hopefully opening a brewpub/nano brewery in the next couple years.

Offline jmcamerlengo

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Re: White Labs Zurich Lager yeast WLP885-Update
« Reply #7 on: February 17, 2012, 10:39:44 AM »
About a week into fermentation with this thing holding steady around 48 degrees. I pitched at 44 and ramped to 48 over a couple days.

So far im LOVING this strain for the baltic porter I put it in.  I dont smell any sulfur at all and the fruity esters are going to compliment my Baltic perfectly I think.  Very happy with this strain thus far.
Jason
-Head Brewer, Brewtus Brewers in the Shenango Valley. Hopefully opening a brewpub/nano brewery in the next couple years.