Author Topic: Help my Kolsch finish fermenting  (Read 15995 times)

Offline gordonstrong

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1355
    • View Profile
    • BJCP
Re: Help my Kolsch finish fermenting
« Reply #30 on: July 16, 2012, 08:24:06 AM »
If you're bottle conditioning, it's basically the same as lagering in bulk.  However, I doubt you'd get it clear enough by just bottle conditioning.  If that's OK with you, then it probably doesn't matter much.

I use gelatin finings while it's cold crashing in primary, then I'll bottle it with a more flocculant yeast (like a Prise de Mousse). I don't personally care about clarity all that much, but I like knowing the "proper" way to do things, so I know what advice I'm ignoring.

If what you bottle tastes ok (not too 'green') then that should work. I worry about about the 'cold crashing' statement, and whether it gives you enough conditioning. The yeast are helping with more than carbonation at this stage; I'm not sure if different strains will do the same thing. But try it. If you find it doesn't condition or mature satisfactorily, then let it lager on the primary strain longer. I suspect your approach will work, and the clarity should be pretty good since you are fining it. But I haven't tried that myself, so that's only conjecture.
Gordon Strong • Beavercreek, Ohio • AHA Member since 1997 • Twitter: GordonStrong

Offline gordonstrong

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1355
    • View Profile
    • BJCP
Re: Help my Kolsch finish fermenting
« Reply #31 on: July 16, 2012, 08:26:04 AM »
I'm also making my first Kolsch.  I've been lagering it for about 2 weeks at 35 F.  I plan to lager for another 2 weeks.  When I bottle do I need to add more yeast, or will there be enough suspended to ferment the priming sugar?  I am not planning on adding any fining agents.

I fermented this batch at around 56-58 F then slowly raised the temp to 65 F, where it stayed for 3 days, then I cooled it to 35.

If you aren't fining it, you should have plenty of yeast for carbonation using this approach. 
Gordon Strong • Beavercreek, Ohio • AHA Member since 1997 • Twitter: GordonStrong

Offline nateo

  • Brewmaster General
  • *******
  • Posts: 2210
  • Denver, CO
    • View Profile
Re: Help my Kolsch finish fermenting
« Reply #32 on: July 16, 2012, 09:18:22 AM »
If you find it doesn't condition or mature satisfactorily, then let it lager on the primary strain longer. I suspect your approach will work, and the clarity should be pretty good since you are fining it.

That's where the wicket gets sticky. I haven't done enough back-to-back comparisons trying different techniques to know if what I do is a good way to do it. It's not a horrible way, but probably not "best practice."
In der Kürze liegt die Würze.

Offline bluesman

  • Global Moderator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 8808
  • Delaware
    • View Profile
Re: Help my Kolsch finish fermenting
« Reply #33 on: July 16, 2012, 10:00:41 AM »
If you find it doesn't condition or mature satisfactorily, then let it lager on the primary strain longer. I suspect your approach will work, and the clarity should be pretty good since you are fining it.

That's where the wicket gets sticky. I haven't done enough back-to-back comparisons trying different techniques to know if what I do is a good way to do it. It's not a horrible way, but probably not "best practice."

I agree with Gordon...try lagering on the yeast for a few weeks longer.  This will allow the yeast to really settle out and help clear the beer.  I do this for all of my lagers and my Kolsch as well.  My Kolsch currently on tap is crystal clear after 4 weeks lagering on the yeast. Note: I didn't use any finings either.
Ron Price

Offline morticaixavier

  • I must live here
  • **********
  • Posts: 7366
  • Underhill VT
    • View Profile
    • The Best Artist in the WORLD!!!!!
Re: Help my Kolsch finish fermenting
« Reply #34 on: July 16, 2012, 10:50:04 AM »
If you find it doesn't condition or mature satisfactorily, then let it lager on the primary strain longer. I suspect your approach will work, and the clarity should be pretty good since you are fining it.

That's where the wicket gets sticky. I haven't done enough back-to-back comparisons trying different techniques to know if what I do is a good way to do it. It's not a horrible way, but probably not "best practice."

I agree with Gordon...try lagering on the yeast for a few weeks longer.  This will allow the yeast to really settle out and help clear the beer.  I do this for all of my lagers and my Kolsch as well.  My Kolsch currently on tap is crystal clear after 4 weeks lagering on the yeast. Note: I didn't use any finings either.

This is good to know. I have a kolsch brew coming up and I have a 60 day window to have it ready for a comp. I am now thinking this gives me 4 weeks on the yeast (is that including or excluding primary fermentation time?) and 2-4 weeks cold condition in the keg. Does this sound good?
"Creativity is the residue of wasted time"
-A Einstein

Offline gordonstrong

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1355
    • View Profile
    • BJCP
Re: Help my Kolsch finish fermenting
« Reply #35 on: July 16, 2012, 12:20:32 PM »
If you find it doesn't condition or mature satisfactorily, then let it lager on the primary strain longer. I suspect your approach will work, and the clarity should be pretty good since you are fining it.

That's where the wicket gets sticky. I haven't done enough back-to-back comparisons trying different techniques to know if what I do is a good way to do it. It's not a horrible way, but probably not "best practice."

I agree with Gordon...try lagering on the yeast for a few weeks longer.  This will allow the yeast to really settle out and help clear the beer.  I do this for all of my lagers and my Kolsch as well.  My Kolsch currently on tap is crystal clear after 4 weeks lagering on the yeast. Note: I didn't use any finings either.

With what yeast?  I use either the Wyeast or White Labs Kolsch yeast, and they never seem to totally drop bright, let alone crystal clear.  For competition, I'd always either fine or filter it.  For just drinking at home, I'd RDWHAHB.
Gordon Strong • Beavercreek, Ohio • AHA Member since 1997 • Twitter: GordonStrong

Offline majorvices

  • Global Moderator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 7820
  • Polka. If its too loud you're too young.
    • View Profile
    • Yellowhammer Brewing Company
Re: Help my Kolsch finish fermenting
« Reply #36 on: July 16, 2012, 03:43:47 PM »
10 ml of Biofine clear A3 and my last kolsh dropped close to crystal clear in 24 hours.



That's after "lagering" on yeast cake in better bottle for about 10 days after fermentation was finished, then straight to keg, added biofine, shook for carbonation and tapped the next day.
Keith Y.

Vote Jonathan Fuller for Governing Committee!

Offline bluesman

  • Global Moderator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 8808
  • Delaware
    • View Profile
Re: Help my Kolsch finish fermenting
« Reply #37 on: July 16, 2012, 06:27:15 PM »
If you find it doesn't condition or mature satisfactorily, then let it lager on the primary strain longer. I suspect your approach will work, and the clarity should be pretty good since you are fining it.

That's where the wicket gets sticky. I haven't done enough back-to-back comparisons trying different techniques to know if what I do is a good way to do it. It's not a horrible way, but probably not "best practice."

I agree with Gordon...try lagering on the yeast for a few weeks longer.  This will allow the yeast to really settle out and help clear the beer.  I do this for all of my lagers and my Kolsch as well.  My Kolsch currently on tap is crystal clear after 4 weeks lagering on the yeast. Note: I didn't use any finings either.

With what yeast?  I use either the Wyeast or White Labs Kolsch yeast, and they never seem to totally drop bright, let alone crystal clear.  For competition, I'd always either fine or filter it.  For just drinking at home, I'd RDWHAHB.

WLP029...and just about crystal clear.  This batch is the clearest I've ever seen a Kolsch without fining.  I was pleasantly surprised.
Ron Price

Offline tschmidlin

  • I must live here
  • **********
  • Posts: 8195
  • Redmond, WA
    • View Profile
Re: Help my Kolsch finish fermenting
« Reply #38 on: July 16, 2012, 11:24:09 PM »
That's after "lagering" on yeast cake in better bottle for about 10 days after fermentation was finished, then straight to keg, added biofine, shook for carbonation and tapped the next day.
No racking between biofine and shaking for carb?
Tom Schmidlin

Offline majorvices

  • Global Moderator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 7820
  • Polka. If its too loud you're too young.
    • View Profile
    • Yellowhammer Brewing Company
Help my Kolsch finish fermenting
« Reply #39 on: July 17, 2012, 07:33:15 AM »
That's after "lagering" on yeast cake in better bottle for about 10 days after fermentation was finished, then straight to keg, added biofine, shook for carbonation and tapped the next day.
No racking between biofine and shaking for carb?

Nope. But I left almost all the yeast behind in the primary (careful racking). It was only slightly hazy when I was racking. And, of course, I poured out the first pint and a half of yeasty beer from the keg.
Keith Y.

Vote Jonathan Fuller for Governing Committee!