Author Topic: How to Lager a 15 gallon batch??  (Read 296 times)

Offline NateN_TX

  • 1st Kit
  • *
  • Posts: 2
How to Lager a 15 gallon batch??
« on: September 06, 2019, 07:50:29 PM »
Hi folks,

I've mostly brewed ales and now trying my hand at lagering a Kolsch (using Wyeast 2565 in this case). I understand for a 5 gallon batch of beer, primary for this yeast strain is typically done between 58F-70F for 1-2 weeks, then transferred to a secondary (carboy or in some cases, a corny) and lagered ~38F for 4 weeks or so, then force carbonated for 2-3 days (please feel free to correct me if this sounds crazy). However, I'm looking to brew a 15 gallon batch and I'm getting hung up on how to lager 15 gallon batches. The primary would be done in a conical at same temp range listed above. Once primary is complete, I don't want to keep the beer in the conical for 4 weeks, so what vessel would work best for the lagering stage in this case? Would transferring to a 1/2 bbl keg for lagering do the trick? Or should I worry about leaving a little more headspace? Any suggestions/recommendations? Thanks!
« Last Edit: September 06, 2019, 08:08:36 PM by NateN_TX »

Offline hopfenundmalz

  • Global Moderator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 9889
  • Milford, MI
Re: How to Lager a 15 gallon batch??
« Reply #1 on: September 06, 2019, 08:18:07 PM »
I ferment in a conical, then lager in corny kegs. I don't see a problem with using a half barrel keg, other than I couldn't lift it.

Once the kegs are in the keezer I reduce gradually to 38F. After a while you can go all the way down to 30F/-1C (used those numbers because I can't set 30.2F on my controller), for a few weeks to get a very clear beer.

I do closed transfers into purged Kegs to minimize O2.
Jeff Rankert
AHA Lifetime Member
BJCP National
Ann Arbor Brewers Guild
Home-brewing, not just a hobby, it is a lifestyle!

Offline Robert

  • Official Poobah of No Life.
  • *
  • Posts: 4214
Re: How to Lager a 15 gallon batch??
« Reply #2 on: September 06, 2019, 08:26:27 PM »
Is it going to end up in, say, 3 corny kegs, or in a 1/2 bbl keg?  Wherever it's going to be in the end for carbonation  and serving would be the ideal place to lager it.  Any time you can avoid unnecessary transfers you should, each one just provides an additional risk of oxygen pickup.  Transfer once from the conical and be done.
Rob Stein
Akron, Ohio

I'd rather have questions I can't answer than answers I can't question.

Offline NateN_TX

  • 1st Kit
  • *
  • Posts: 2
Re: How to Lager a 15 gallon batch??
« Reply #3 on: September 06, 2019, 08:31:54 PM »
Thank y’all for the quick responses! My gut told me lagering in a keg would be fine and your responses made me feel a lot better about it. I will probably rack into 3 separate corny kegs this time around and see how it goes. Cheers!

Offline kramerog

  • Brewmaster General
  • *******
  • Posts: 2081
    • My LinkedIn page
Re: How to Lager a 15 gallon batch??
« Reply #4 on: September 06, 2019, 08:49:52 PM »
If you are using the powdery kolsch yeast (I think that's Wyeast) it'll take 1 month for the beer to drop clear.  So if you tend to  move your cornies of beer around stirring up the yeast,  consider secondarying in a 1/2 barrel, blowing off some yeasty beer and then transferring to a corny.  A clear kolsch is a beautiful thing!