Author Topic: Results of slightly high ferm temp on Oktoberfests/Pilsners  (Read 498 times)

Offline hopaddicted

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I just started lagering and sure enough within two days of throwing a batch in the fridge, the temp rose up to 56 degrees and has stayed between 56 and 60 degrees (primarily around 56). I used the White Labs WLP800 on the German Pilsner and the WLP820 on the Oktoberfest. What effect will these temperatures have with these yeasts? Will some extra time in the secondary or at colder temps help any off flavors that may be generated by the higher fermentation temps? I am not planning on serving until October (saving for an Oktoberfest party, date TBD) and will wait to keg until necessary (to avoid the temptation of drinking it all before the party). I am planning on tasting tonight to see how it is doing so far. Any advice/input appreciated.
Primary: Lambic
Secondary: Oktoberfest, German Pilsner, Double IPA,
In Bottles: Lucknow IPA clone, Rough Rider Brown Ale clone,
John Harvard Imperial Stout clone, Hoppy Amber, Witch's Brew (Habanero and Smoked Corn Small Ale), Porter, Dunkleweizen, Dry Stout, Irish Red Ale, American Maple Wheat Ale, Black Wit, Belgian style Wit, Belgian Golden Strong Ale
Kegged: IPA, Saison, Hoppy Brown Ale

Offline wingnut

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Re: Results of slightly high ferm temp on Oktoberfests/Pilsners
« Reply #1 on: July 06, 2010, 05:31:50 PM »
Assuming you are listing beer temps and not air temps, I think you will be fine.  I usually ferment my Octoberfest beers around 55F, and I do not detect any significant issues.   

If you are measuring air temperature, however, then you could have a problem.  In my system the air tends to be 4F to 10F cooler then the beer during fermentation.   If you are measuring air temps, then you beer could be closer to ale temperature than lager temperature.

Regardless, in about two weeks (basically just before your beer ferments down to 1.020 or so), let the beer warm up about 5 degrees for two days.    That should encourage the yeast to reduce some of the flavor active compounds.  In the lagers I have done this, I have noticed a significant improvement in the beer.

Good luck! 
-- Wingnut - Cheers!

Offline hopaddicted

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Re: Results of slightly high ferm temp on Oktoberfests/Pilsners
« Reply #2 on: July 08, 2010, 05:12:50 PM »
Thanks wingnut! I sampled both and didn't taste anything undesirable. I am going to try the wet towel to try to cool it down a bit. Temps were taken both in the fridge and on the fermenters and have been pretty close together. Not sure if the wet towel will work as well in the fridge, but it can't hurt right?
Primary: Lambic
Secondary: Oktoberfest, German Pilsner, Double IPA,
In Bottles: Lucknow IPA clone, Rough Rider Brown Ale clone,
John Harvard Imperial Stout clone, Hoppy Amber, Witch's Brew (Habanero and Smoked Corn Small Ale), Porter, Dunkleweizen, Dry Stout, Irish Red Ale, American Maple Wheat Ale, Black Wit, Belgian style Wit, Belgian Golden Strong Ale
Kegged: IPA, Saison, Hoppy Brown Ale

Offline joeysmokedporter

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Re: Results of slightly high ferm temp on Oktoberfests/Pilsners
« Reply #3 on: July 10, 2010, 04:19:12 AM »
If it took 2 days to get to that temperature, and you pitched it at a cooler temp, it is likely fine.  Higher temperatures will generally promote ester formation, but this happens primarily in the growth phase, which is after pitching.  If it is fermenting happily at 56 personally I'd leave it alone until it is time to do the diacetyl rest, which was suggested in the previous post.

happy brewing.
R. Lorber
Westminster, MD