Author Topic: First time doing a true lager  (Read 1551 times)

Offline micsager

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First time doing a true lager
« on: April 17, 2014, 08:07:30 AM »
OK, we finally bit the bullet and figured we'd give this a try.  Brewing a Classic Pilsner.  OG was 1.57 and my target FG was 1.014. 

After three weeks in primary at 53 degrees, we were down to 1.028, so I figured time to the diacytel rest, raised the temperature to 62, two days later down to 1.018.  Last night we transferred to corny for the lagering part of this process.   It's now at 36 degrees, in a corny.  I purged the corny as I was filling, and left a little head pressure on.  No line is currently hooked up.

Over the next month, will I see any continued fermentation and hit that 1.014 number, or am I stuck with a slightly sweet lager?


Offline beersk

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Re: First time doing a true lager
« Reply #1 on: April 17, 2014, 08:20:47 AM »
I think you're stuck there. The yeast won't be working at 36F. Next time, make sure to aerate better and pitch more yeast. When you start to see fermentation slowing, raise the temp up to your diacetyl rest temp.

I've been playing with stepping temps up every couple days after fermentation starts. I think it eliminates the need for long lagering periods because the beer is clean going into the keg. It just needs to clear and it's ready to drink.
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Offline rabeb25

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Re: First time doing a true lager
« Reply #2 on: April 17, 2014, 08:26:42 AM »
Yup beat me to it..you are stuck with a sweet lager. This isn't directed towards you but per say but I don't understand why people ferment lagers(or ales for that matter) to a time frame and not to FG. ALWAYS ferment to FG regardless of time, a fast ferment test would tell you what that was. I would not have done the di rest at only half done either.. next time try this...

2l starter, with plenty of 02
do fast ferment test (FFT)
Ferment until within 1-2plato (~4-8 gravity points) of FG from FFT
then di-rest to FG
Then keg/carbonate/lager

good luck
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Offline klickitat jim

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Re: First time doing a true lager
« Reply #3 on: April 17, 2014, 08:27:18 AM »
I'm too rookie to give you advice but for what its worth ive been having good success and getting lagers from 1.050 to 1.010. I've been told that the lions share of esters are produced in the growth stage. I start ramping my temp up a degree or two per day after the first 48hrs until I reach 62º and hold there till done. For me with 5 gallons that's normally 2-3 weeks.

Offline micsager

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Re: First time doing a true lager
« Reply #4 on: April 17, 2014, 09:01:12 AM »
It's only been at 36 over night.  If I raise it back up to 55 or so, would the yeast come back to life?  Or would that cause more problems than it would solve? 

Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: First time doing a true lager
« Reply #5 on: April 17, 2014, 09:11:13 AM »
Pitch a lot of yeast, what Mrmalty or another calculator says. I pitch lower than fermentation temp and let it rise to the 48-50F target and maintain that. When 1-2 Plato above final, I do the D-rest, then if the sample is free of diacetyl, crash it to lagering temperature, -1C.

With big pitches, nutrients in the boil, and plenty of O2 I am crashing at about day 7 or before for a 1.050 + lager.
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Offline rabeb25

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Re: First time doing a true lager
« Reply #6 on: April 17, 2014, 09:16:40 AM »
Pitch a lot of yeast, what Mrmalty or another calculator says. I pitch lower than fermentation temp and let it rise to the 48-50F target and maintain that. When 1-2 Plato above final, I do the D-rest, then if the sample is free of diacetyl, crash it to lagering temperature, -1C.

With big pitches, nutrients in the boil, and plenty of O2 I am crashing at about day 7 or before for a 1.050 + lager.

I concur my lagers follow close to that timeline as well.
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: First time doing a true lager
« Reply #7 on: April 17, 2014, 09:29:01 AM »
Pitch a lot of yeast, what Mrmalty or another calculator says. I pitch lower than fermentation temp and let it rise to the 48-50F target and maintain that. When 1-2 Plato above final, I do the D-rest, then if the sample is free of diacetyl, crash it to lagering temperature, -1C.

With big pitches, nutrients in the boil, and plenty of O2 I am crashing at about day 7 or before for a 1.050 + lager.

I concur my lagers follow close to that timeline as well.

A 1.085 Doppelbock will take around 9 days, maybe 10.
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Offline gmac

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Re: First time doing a true lager
« Reply #8 on: April 17, 2014, 09:36:41 AM »
Is shaking enough or is compressed O2 essential?  I have a slow lager and I was worried about that because I don't have forced O2 capability yet.

Online HoosierBrew

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Re: First time doing a true lager
« Reply #9 on: April 17, 2014, 09:41:48 AM »
Pitch a lot of yeast, what Mrmalty or another calculator says. I pitch lower than fermentation temp and let it rise to the 48-50F target and maintain that. When 1-2 Plato above final, I do the D-rest, then if the sample is free of diacetyl, crash it to lagering temperature, -1C.

With big pitches, nutrients in the boil, and plenty of O2 I am crashing at about day 7 or before for a 1.050 + lager.

I concur my lagers follow close to that timeline as well.

A 1.085 Doppelbock will take around 9 days, maybe 10.

The BoPils I just brewed hit FG in 8 days. As mentioned, I pitched yeast per Mr Malty, used yeast nutrient, and oxygenated thoroughly.
Jon H.

Offline beersk

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Re: First time doing a true lager
« Reply #10 on: April 17, 2014, 10:32:02 AM »
Is shaking enough or is compressed O2 essential?  I have a slow lager and I was worried about that because I don't have forced O2 capability yet.
Depends on the OG, but pure O2 can't hurt, that's for sure. A friend of mine has brewed some good lagers without using pure O2 in the 1.050-1.060 range and they attenuated as expected. But I prefer to use pure O2.
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Re: First time doing a true lager
« Reply #11 on: April 17, 2014, 10:34:39 AM »
Is shaking enough or is compressed O2 essential?  I have a slow lager and I was worried about that because I don't have forced O2 capability yet.
Depends on the OG, but pure O2 can't hurt, that's for sure. A friend of mine has brewed some good lagers without using pure O2 in the 1.050-1.060 range and they attenuated as expected. But I prefer to use pure O2.

I used a mix stir on my recent one, until the foam hit the top of the bucket.  1.012 in 8 days.
Jon H.

Offline rabeb25

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Re: First time doing a true lager
« Reply #12 on: April 17, 2014, 10:50:35 AM »
I read I can't remember where, that lagers require an optimal concentration that only pure o2 can provide.
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Offline AmandaK

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Re: First time doing a true lager
« Reply #13 on: April 17, 2014, 10:50:53 AM »
Is shaking enough or is compressed O2 essential?  I have a slow lager and I was worried about that because I don't have forced O2 capability yet.
Depends on the OG, but pure O2 can't hurt, that's for sure. A friend of mine has brewed some good lagers without using pure O2 in the 1.050-1.060 range and they attenuated as expected. But I prefer to use pure O2.

I used a mix stir on my recent one, until the foam hit the top of the bucket.  1.012 in 8 days.

I also use a Mix Stir, and do not fail to hit my final gravity on my lagers.
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Offline klickitat jim

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Re: First time doing a true lager
« Reply #14 on: April 17, 2014, 02:08:44 PM »
I read I can't remember where, that lagers require an optimal concentration that only pure o2 can provide.

The word require can be subjective in the brewing world