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Old 01-15-2013, 01:41 PM   #1
Madinaman
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Default Ale yeast at 50F?

Looking to ferment a brown ale this winter, but my basement is about 52 degrees this time of year. Are there any ale yeasts that will slowly chew through a 1.069 brown ale at that temp? I don't mind if I have to keep it down there for the long haul. Just looking for some feedback.

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Old 01-15-2013, 01:58 PM   #2
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Any reason you can't bring the fermentor up into the warmer part of your house for the first three or four days? That's what I do. My fermentation corner is about 53 right now.

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Old 01-15-2013, 02:01 PM   #3
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Depending on the strain of yeast the low 60's is about right. I would be worried about the yeast going to sleep that low or it taking so long to get started that a bad bug could get a toe hold.

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Old 01-15-2013, 02:05 PM   #4
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you could use a lager yeast and turn your brown into a lovely bock....or move upstairs. if you could get to the high 50s you could push an ale yeast i think if you had a big starter. the ol' rubbermaid tub with water and aquarium heater might do the trick.

just throwing out some idears

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Old 01-15-2013, 02:06 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Varmintman View Post
Depending on the strain of yeast the low 60's is about right. I would be worried about the yeast going to sleep that low or it taking so long to get started that a bad bug could get a toe hold.
I have a heating system to get mine going - starting at 52 is really hard, those yeasties just want to sleep.
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Old 01-15-2013, 02:10 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by brycelarson View Post
I have a heating system to get mine going - starting at 52 is really hard, those yeasties just want to sleep.
that's how i feel on cold winter mornings, too. i used to live in a house with no insulation or central heating in the mountains. the mornings were like 45 degrees. couldn't get out of bed
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Old 01-15-2013, 02:12 PM   #7
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Kolsch yeast (WY2656) is about the coolest fermenting ale yeast around. But I don't think it works below ~55. If you pitch at say 60F, and wrap it really well with a sleeping bag to keep it warmer until it takes off, it might work for you. It should self sustain temps during active fermentation. You might even have to take the insulation off. With fermentation in the mid 50's, the Kolsch yeast will taste very lager like and will have few of the fruity/wine like overtones that you get in the low 60's. If you haven't tried Kolsch yeast, you shoud give it a go sometime. It's in my top 3.

52 is a tidge warm for a lager, and you may not have a means for lager conditioning (35-40 for 4-8 weeks). Or as stated above you could ferment upstairs.

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Old 01-15-2013, 02:30 PM   #8
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stop with the lager FUD. 52 is not warm for a lager. it is actually a very good fermentation temperature.

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Old 01-15-2013, 02:40 PM   #9
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I would ferment upstairs, but the lady likes it around 75, and I work long days, and wouldn't be able to monitor temps in a swamp cooler very well. Appreciate all the feedback...

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Old 01-15-2013, 02:45 PM   #10
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I routinely do ales with nottingham at 54 degrees. its super clean tasting that low. Once fermentation starts it creates its own heat.

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