Spike Brewing 12.5 Conical Fermenter Giveaway - Enter Now!

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Techniques > Underpitched with lager yeast

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 09-23-2006, 06:18 PM   #1
Glibbidy
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Glibbidy's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Sunny Southern Vermont
Posts: 2,399
Liked 12 Times on 11 Posts
Likes Given: 2

Default Underpitched with lager yeast

I brewed 10 gallons of Bohemian Pilsner last night, and it appears that I may have grossly underpitched with White Labs 802- Czech Budejovice lager yeast. I had anticipated brewing this batch today (Saturday), so I got my yeast starter in the works on Thursday night. I made a 96 oz. starter for a 10 gallon batch. Pitching it in 48 hours would have be more ideal, but the wife gave me the go ahead to move forward with the brew session on Friday instead of Saturday therefore my starter had only been at it for 24 hours.

I aerated the heck out of this batch, and let it sit out overnight in hopes of fermentation starting, and had plans to move it to the lagering chamber in the morning after fermentation started.

I checked this morning, and there was no action. I made the power call, and moved the primary fermenter into the lagering chamber anyway, and aerated it some more in hopes that fermentation will start soon. I have experienced lag phases from 3-30 hours, pitching adequate amounts of yeast. In this case, I prolly only had a cell count high enough for 7-8 gallons.

Here's the quandry. I don't have anymore WLP 802,and trip to the LHBS is out of the question. I do have some WLP840 American Lager Yeast which I could use to save the batch. Not an ideal solution, but it would save me from dumping 10 gallons.

I realize the yeast will need to work really hard for the fermentation to take-off, so what would you consider a reasonable time frame, to pull the plug, and just throw more yeast at this batch?

__________________
Glibbidy is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-24-2006, 02:15 AM   #2
knewshound
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Sacramento, CA
Posts: 283
Default

One question; What temp was the beer when you pitched?

Have you kept it above 75 since?

That particular yeast likes to get started warm and cooled later.

Or

You can pitch the American Lager, you have little to lose and the brew can be saved that way.

I like lagers anyway.

Cheers,

knewshound

__________________

In Wine there is Wisdom.

In Beer there is Strength.

In Water there is Bacteria.

The knewshounds Blog

Homebrewing 1A

Homebrewing 101

knewshound is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-24-2006, 02:39 AM   #3
ALPS
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 155
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by knewshound

You can pitch the American Lager, you have little to lose and the brew can be saved that way.
This may be about your only option at this point but certainly not a gaurantee by any means.

A three quart starter for a ten gallon lager is way too small, even under ideal conditons. A 3 gallon starter would have been a good place to start.

Moving the vessel to lagering temps before signs of fermentation isn't helping you at all either. Did you drop the temp all at once, or slowly over a day or two?
__________________

A fool and his money are soon partying.

ALPS is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-25-2006, 12:55 PM   #4
Glibbidy
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Glibbidy's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Sunny Southern Vermont
Posts: 2,399
Liked 12 Times on 11 Posts
Likes Given: 2

Default 36 hours later.....observed fermentation

Quote:
Originally Posted by knewshound
One question; What temp was the beer when you pitched?
Have you kept it above 75 since?
That particular yeast likes to get started warm and cooled later.
I pitched the yeast at around 79f. That was as cool as I could get my wort using the immersion chiller.
The wort dropped to room temp in the basement which is hovering ~64f.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ALPS
This may be about your only option at this point but certainly not a gaurantee by any means.

A three quart starter for a ten gallon lager is way too small, even under ideal conditons. A 3 gallon starter would have been a good place to start.
Moving the vessel to lagering temps before signs of fermentation isn't helping you at all either. Did you drop the temp all at once, or slowly over a day or two?
Well I opted for patience, and the yeast blasted off sometime after about 30 hours (I checked as soon as I woke up Sunday morning). With a healthy lager yeast starter my .75-1.25 gal starters have worked in the past with pitching at room temp, and then dropping to lager temps as soon, as I observe fermentation start.

As far as a three gallon starter goes, are you cold pitching with that much yeast? I clearly need to do more research on cold pitching, as it seems to be the smart way to go, but then again I don't have a real temp controller, so all my lager beers are total hack jobs, right down to the decoctions.

I did move the vessel into the lager chamber before fermetation started. It usually takes my wort three days in the chamber to drop from ~64f to 55F. Not ideal, but without a temp controller, it's rogue alechemy at it's best.

I'm definitely going to start cold pitching my lager beers in the future.
__________________
Glibbidy is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-25-2006, 11:10 PM   #5
boo boo
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Hearts's Delight, Newfoundland
Posts: 4,171
Liked 30 Times on 26 Posts
Likes Given: 4

Default

Yeah, I'm thinking you are going to get some fussel alcohols and esters in this brew. That is a high pitching temperture for a lager. Ideally you should have opted to cool the wort down if it was able to be kept sanitary (as I know you could) and boost the starter and pitch a cooled ample starter to your fermentation temperture wort.

trying to rush a brew don't help.

__________________

How do you BBQ an elephant....first you get your elephant....

boo boo is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-27-2006, 06:01 PM   #6
Glibbidy
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Glibbidy's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Sunny Southern Vermont
Posts: 2,399
Liked 12 Times on 11 Posts
Likes Given: 2

Default

I took a peek under the lid last night, and Holy krausen batman!

__________________
Glibbidy is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-28-2006, 04:07 AM   #7
disaffected
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 829
Liked 2 Times on 2 Posts

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ALPS
This may be about your only option at this point but certainly not a gaurantee by any means.

A three quart starter for a ten gallon lager is way too small, even under ideal conditons. A 3 gallon starter would have been a good place to start.

Moving the vessel to lagering temps before signs of fermentation isn't helping you at all either. Did you drop the temp all at once, or slowly over a day or two?
When you make a three gallon starter (oh my!) for a 10 gallon brew, that is a significant portion of the total volume. To ensure you get the beer you really intended, do you have to brew the beer twice, one three gallon batch for the starter, and one seven gallon yeast starter batch to make up the 10 gallons? Or do you just brew the base malt, and leave all the other specialty malts and hops for the seven gallon portion?

A three gallon starter is mind-boggling to me.
__________________
disaffected 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
Is culturing lager yeast from a bottle harder than ale yeast? hexmonkey Fermentation & Yeast 2 08-31-2009 05:23 PM
Effect on FG with same recipe but one with ale yeast and other with lager yeast. jaja Recipes/Ingredients 1 06-14-2009 04:33 AM
I think I underpitched chew Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 10 03-23-2009 05:16 PM
Ale Yeast That Works Like Lager Yeast? Cpt_Kirks Recipes/Ingredients 4 02-04-2009 07:11 AM
Mixing ale yeast and lager yeast- will it work??? kaj030201 General Techniques 8 11-11-2008 04:28 PM