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drunkatuw 10-11-2007 05:05 PM

Question regarding my first lager
 
I brewed an Oktoberfest extract kit from AHS and have had it sitting in a temperature controlled first at 52 degrees for 10 days now. The airlock stopped bubbling around 7 days and by 10 the krausen had fallen.

Yesterday I took the fermenter out of the fridge and put it on my workbench and was planning on leaving it there for 2 days (AHS said to do this to improve flavor). This morning I looked at it and there was about 1/8" of krausen and the airlock was bubbling again. So it appears that at the warmer temperature (about 63 degrees in my basement) the yeast became active again.

I know that everyone says you get off-flavors if you ferment a lager at ale temperature, so will this give me off flavors? I was planning on transferring to secondary tonight and then cooling down to 40 degrees over 2 days.

Should I just RDWHAHB and stick with my plan?

TheJadedDog 10-11-2007 05:10 PM

What you are experiencing is completely normal and desired for a lager. Fermenting at cold temps can result in Diacetyl which produces a butterscotchy taste. The reason the instructions recommended bringing the fermenter up to room temp before lagering is so the yeast will "wake up" and start "eating" the diacetyl. Go ahead and follow your original plan as it sounds like the right thing to me.

Also, you don't get off-flavors from fermenting lager yeast at room temp, you just don't get a clean lager style ale. In fact, fermenting lager yeast at higher temps is how you get a California Common like anchor steam.

boo boo 10-11-2007 08:42 PM

I beg to differ.

Fermenting at proper-for-the-yeast tempertures will result in less diacetyl than fermenting at a higher than recommended temperture. Doing a diacetyl rest WILL ensure that any diacetyl produced by the initial fermentation will be absorbed., as long as it isn't excessive, as from fermenting at high temps.

You do get off flavors from fermenting lagers using lager yeast (not california steam yeast) at higher than recommended temps. You'll get increased esters and fusels and diacetyl by doing so.

Don't take my word for it though. Ask John Palmer, Greg Noonan and Charlie Papazian.

azmtnbiker 10-11-2007 10:20 PM

It sounds like you are doing a diacetyl rest which is usally done when the fermentation is about 75% done. I think you should stick to your original plan. After 2 days just put it back at 50-52 until fermentation is complete and transfer then lager for 2 months.

sudbuster 10-11-2007 10:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by drunkatuw
...........>I know that everyone says you get off-flavors if you ferment a lager at ale temperature, so will this give me off flavors? I was planning on transferring to secondary tonight and then cooling down to 40 degrees over 2 days.

Should I just RDWHAHB and stick with my plan?

Sounds cool. Seems to me you are right on schedule. Also what the guys above said is good advice....:)

boo boo 10-11-2007 10:36 PM

You can leave it at the warm temps now that the bulk of fermentation has been done. The diacetyl rest should finish the fermentation for you and then you can rack and lower to lagering temps.
The risk of off flavors has passed once most of the fermentation has been done.


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