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Old 04-27-2012, 05:07 PM   #1
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Default California Common help

I will be brewing a California Common (recipe from Brewing Classic Styles) and am leaning towards using the Wyeast 2112 California Lager yeast and will be making a starter. I do not have the ability to lager but I can maintain 62f in my swamp cooler no problem and that is where the recipe says to ferment. I have heard many different things regarding length of time for fermentation. I was planning on leaving in primary for a month, but doing a diacetyl rest around 70f when I am at about 75% completion, then returning back to 62f. After the month long primary I plan to go right to bottles. I will let carb at room temp for 2-3 weeks, then stick in the fridge to "lager" for around 3 weeks unless I can't stand to wait . Does this sound like an ideal process? Please steer me in the right direction if my plan is wrong. Any and all tips and suggestions from people with experience in this style are welcome. I have spent several hours searching this style and the yeast over the past few days and haven't really found answers I am looking for.

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Old 04-27-2012, 05:13 PM   #2
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I just popped the cap on my 3rd batch of my common, used 2112 as well and fermented at 60 for 3 weeks, bottled, kept at 70 for 2 weeks and then threw some in the fridge for a week. I did not do any rest.

Did a side by side with Anchor Steam, which is what I was shooting for, mine was a bit darker but otherwise they were darn near identical!

Cheers!

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Old 04-27-2012, 05:18 PM   #3
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Your method is nearly exactly the way I ferment my Cali Common. I do my ferment at 59-60F, but I have a fridge and it was easy. I did my diacetyl rest at 68F for 2-3 days, until fermentation completed (i.e. I hit my expected FG). I then dropped the temp down into the mid 50s for 1.5-2 weeks. So my fermentation was about 3.5 weeks. I let it carb for 3-4 weeks at 70F and then it was ready to drink. I didn't do any lagering in the bottles, but rather bottles I was going to drink were put in the fridge a week or so before drinking. they turned out great. The recipe I used was very similar to the one in Brewing Classic Styles. I mashed at 154F, which gave me a little more body than I'd like. If I were to do it again I'd mash at 150-152F, drop the chocolate malt(makes it darker than I'd like and probably adds some body), and add more bittering hops.

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Old 04-27-2012, 05:49 PM   #4
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Thank you both for the responses! I will drop the extended fridge time before drinking as waiting is not a virtue I have. Did you need to add any yeast at bottling, or was there plenty left for carbing?

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Old 04-27-2012, 06:10 PM   #5
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I agree with duboman; I often brew a California Common beer using 2112, ferment on the cooler side for a month and bottle. It is one of my favorite and easily reproducible beers!

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Old 04-27-2012, 09:03 PM   #6
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2112 is a fun yeast. I brewed a cali common, cream ale, and baltic porter off the same yeast. Once you're done with that first beer, consider trying a baltic porter and repitch some of the same yeast.

You don't have to wait, but I found my common was better after some cold storage. Could have been that I fermented a bit high though.

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Old 04-27-2012, 09:32 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mjohnson View Post
2112 is a fun yeast. I brewed a cali common, cream ale, and baltic porter off the same yeast. Once you're done with that first beer, consider trying a baltic porter and repitch some of the same yeast.

You don't have to wait, but I found my common was better after some cold storage. Could have been that I fermented a bit high though.
I agree, my beer improved after a couple weeks in the fridge as well!
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Old 04-27-2012, 09:42 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OClairBrew View Post
Thank you both for the responses! I will drop the extended fridge time before drinking as waiting is not a virtue I have. Did you need to add any yeast at bottling, or was there plenty left for carbing?
No need to add extra yeast at bottling. There will be plenty of yeast left in the beer to carb in a timely manner. In fact, I tasted one of mine after just one week and it was nearly fully carbed.
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Old 04-27-2012, 09:57 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mjohnson View Post
2112 is a fun yeast. I brewed a cali common, cream ale, and baltic porter off the same yeast. Once you're done with that first beer, consider trying a baltic porter and repitch some of the same yeast.

You don't have to wait, but I found my common was better after some cold storage. Could have been that I fermented a bit high though.
Hmm.... I think the pipeline is full enough that I can try to wait a few weeks after sticking in the fridge to drink. This will be my first time using liquid yeast and I am definitely considering washing it to re-use. I will certainly consider the baltic porter.
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Old 04-28-2012, 04:56 AM   #10
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So the LHBS only carries White Labs so I picked up the WLP810 San Fran Lager yeast. I have my starter going now and curious if that strain of yeast requires a diacetyl rest?

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