Spike Brewing 12.5 Conical Fermenter Giveaway - Enter Now!

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Techniques > Proposed Lager Procedure (My First Lager)

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 06-17-2010, 06:25 PM   #1
Roz762
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Katy, TX
Posts: 28
Default Proposed Lager Procedure (My First Lager)

Hey guys,

I've done several ales since I started brewing over a year ago, but this weekend I will by trying my first lager. I got a small minifridge off craigslist for $30 that will fit two cornies and I will be lagering in it as well. I think I robbed the guy blind considering it gets down to 34-33 deg. F. Certainly a steal since I live in an apartment and the wife is not too gleeful towards my space consuming hobby. I'll post some pics once I get the guy converted for kegeration.

Anyways...

I though I pass my proposed lager brewing and fermenting procedure past you guys just to make sure I've got it clear and my first attempt doesn't end up going down the bathtub drain. I'm going to pick up at the yeast pitching since I assume we all know how to boil water. Also, this will be for a kegging outfit, and I do not force carbonate but rather treat the keg like one giant bottle. Feel free to correct me as needed over the procedure. I know everyone has an opinion, so lets not get too crazy!

Ok, here we go:

1) Brew as usual. Transfer wort to primary via conuterflow chiller. Wort will be at 55 deg. F.
2) Pitch two smack packs of Wyeast lager yeast (2206 to be specific) and aerate.
3) Ferment at 49 F (thats as warm as my fridge gets) until within two to three points of FG.
4) Once within two to three points of FG, remove from fridge and allow diacetyl rest while still in primary at ambient room temps. (approx 74 F, once again because of the limits to my fridge's maximum temp. range) unitl beer reaches FG (about 4 - 7 days).
5) Transfer to secondary, making sure to rack a small amount of yeast from the primary. Place secondary back in fridge at 49 F and ferment for two more weeks while slowly dropping the temperature to 34 F over the course of that two weeks.
6) Rack into a 5 gal. corny keg and add priming sugar to carbonate. Cap the keg and add Co2 to clear the headspace.
7) Lager for 2 - 4 weeks.
8) Drink!

Alot of room for debate here so have at it. Thanks fellas (and gals).

-Roz

__________________
Roz762 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-17-2010, 06:31 PM   #2
Walker
I use secondaries. :p
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Walker's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Cary, NC
Posts: 11,235
Liked 72 Times on 64 Posts
Likes Given: 11

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roz762 View Post
Ok, here we go:

1) Brew as usual. Transfer wort to primary via conuterflow chiller. Wort will be at 55 deg. F.
I am not an experienced lager brewer, but that first step there....

You're going to need more than a CFC to get down to 55*F, aren't you? I imagine that ground water in Texas at this time of year is a chilly 80+*F or so, so you'll need a way of pumping ice-water through your CFC instead of just ground water if you want to get down to 55*F.
__________________
Ground Fault Brewing Co.
Walker is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-17-2010, 07:17 PM   #3
bja
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Pittsburgh
Posts: 1,769
Liked 96 Times on 74 Posts

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roz762 View Post
1) Brew as usual. Transfer wort to primary via conuterflow chiller. Wort will be at 55 deg. F.
2) Pitch two smack packs of Wyeast lager yeast (2206 to be specific) and aerate.
3) Ferment at 49 F (thats as warm as my fridge gets) until within two to three points of FG.
4) Once within two to three points of FG, remove from fridge and allow diacetyl rest while still in primary at ambient room temps. (approx 74 F, once again because of the limits to my fridge's maximum temp. range) unitl beer reaches FG (about 4 - 7 days).
5) Transfer to secondary, making sure to rack a small amount of yeast from the primary. Place secondary back in fridge at 49 F and ferment for two more weeks while slowly dropping the temperature to 34 F over the course of that two weeks.
6) Rack into a 5 gal. corny keg and add priming sugar to carbonate. Cap the keg and add Co2 to clear the headspace.
7) Lager for 2 - 4 weeks.
8) Drink!
-Roz
1. What Walker said! You need to get the temp down idealy to 47-48 F before pitching.
2. You absolutely need to make a starter for a lager.
3. Sounds good.
4. I would somehow try to keep it in the mid to low 60's F.
5. Don't worry about racking some yeast. There will be enough still in suspension.
6. Sounds good.
7. I would say 4-6 weeks.
8. Absolutely!
__________________
bja is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-17-2010, 08:29 PM   #4
Captain_Bigelow
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 834
Liked 8 Times on 8 Posts

Default

Whenever I make a lager I just chill to the usual ale temp (mid 60's). Pitch the starter (also at that temp), then put in the temperature controlled freezer to lower the temp down to 55. Never had any problems with this method.

__________________
Captain_Bigelow is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-17-2010, 08:32 PM   #5
Roz762
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Katy, TX
Posts: 28
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Walker View Post
I am not an experienced lager brewer, but that first step there....

You're going to need more than a CFC to get down to 55*F, aren't you? I imagine that ground water in Texas at this time of year is a chilly 80+*F or so, so you'll need a way of pumping ice-water through your CFC instead of just ground water if you want to get down to 55*F.
Sorry. I've got a prechiller that I use to run the tap through an ice bath first. Forgot to mention that.
__________________
Roz762 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-17-2010, 08:41 PM   #6
Roz762
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Katy, TX
Posts: 28
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by bja View Post
2. You absolutely need to make a starter for a lager.
3. Sounds good.
4. I would somehow try to keep it in the mid to low 60's F.
Well taken. Just a couple quick questions:

For the starter:
Wouldn't two smack packs be enuf? Thats what Wyeast reccomends on their website. I know its the lazy mans way of doing it, but it seems like i'd just be easier to let the smack packs do the work for me (which is what they were designed for). Am I wrong?

For the diacetyl rest:
I know the ideal temp range to get the beer to would be mid 60's, but will it kill me if I can't do that? I know it might cause some small ester production but I think it would be minimal given the short amount of fermentation time at this temp, but wouldn't that mostly calm down in the lagering? Opinions?
__________________
Roz762 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-17-2010, 08:45 PM   #7
Roz762
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Katy, TX
Posts: 28
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain_Bigelow View Post
Whenever I make a lager I just chill to the usual ale temp (mid 60's). Pitch the starter (also at that temp), then put in the temperature controlled freezer to lower the temp down to 55. Never had any problems with this method.
Wait, so you treat it like an ale, just colder? No diacetyl rest, no super cold lagering?
__________________
Roz762 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-20-2010, 01:39 PM   #8
EKennett
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Fishkill, New York
Posts: 103
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

I'm new to lagers too, but I've done 2 so far and they have come out good. I got my wort as chilled as I could with ground water, my last back which was Octoberfest I got to 68f and then pitched the yeast. I let it sit in my basement at 65f until I started seeing a krausen form, then I popped it in the fermentation chamber at 50f. I skipped the D-rest since it tasted just fine to me after 10 days. Racked to carboy and popped in the kegerator for lagering at 38f until the leaves turn brown

I agree that you really need a yeast starter for lager beers.

__________________
EKennett is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-20-2010, 09:42 PM   #9
Yooper
Ale's What Cures You!
HBT_ADMIN.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Yooper's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Upper Michigan
Posts: 60,707
Liked 4364 Times on 3173 Posts
Likes Given: 848

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roz762 View Post
Well taken. Just a couple quick questions:

For the starter:
Wouldn't two smack packs be enuf? Thats what Wyeast reccomends on their website. I know its the lazy mans way of doing it, but it seems like i'd just be easier to let the smack packs do the work for me (which is what they were designed for). Am I wrong?

For the diacetyl rest:
I know the ideal temp range to get the beer to would be mid 60's, but will it kill me if I can't do that? I know it might cause some small ester production but I think it would be minimal given the short amount of fermentation time at this temp, but wouldn't that mostly calm down in the lagering? Opinions?
That will work for the diacetyl rest. You don't need a two week secondary after racking- the fermentation will be complete and you can start lowering the temperature once you rack.

Two yeast packages are definitely better than one, but you're probably still underpitching by quite a bit. Consult mrmalty.com, and go to the "yeast pitching calculator" to get the best pitch rate for your yeast and OG.
__________________
Broken Leg Brewery
Giving beer a leg to stand on since 2006
Yooper is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-21-2010, 11:06 PM   #10
petep1980
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
petep1980's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 1,901
Liked 13 Times on 13 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

You may need top off water to get to 55°F. If you can get in the low 60s and chill with freezer you could be at a good temp by the time fermentation kicks in anyways.

__________________
petep1980 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply


Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Lager procedure - pls check Bru General Techniques 4 04-14-2010 06:25 AM
Fast primary for Extract Lager. Treat it like a Lager or an ALE now? Recluse Extract Brewing 0 02-28-2010 05:05 PM
Please check my lager procedure Bru General Techniques 3 10-21-2009 05:57 AM
What to do after lager?Making a Oktoberfest Lager using White Labs Octoberfest(WLP820 Evstakiev Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 1 07-20-2009 12:43 AM
First Lager Procedure maltMonkey General Techniques 11 03-10-2008 06:55 AM