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Old 12-06-2011, 03:04 PM   #11
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Lager temp plays a role in the amount of time needed in lagering. A rule of thumb is colder=longer warmer=shorter and the longer you lager the cleaner the final product. as for time figure for about a 40 degree lager temp is 1 day per point if original gravity. A 1.050 OG then would be lagered about 50 days.

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Old 12-07-2011, 04:30 AM   #12
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Lager temp plays a role in the amount of time needed in lagering. A rule of thumb is colder=longer warmer=shorter and the longer you lager the cleaner the final product.
So...you are saying if you lager warmer, you can lager shorter? I've never heard that rule of thumb before.
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Old 12-07-2011, 06:23 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by 944play View Post
The best pint is almost always the last one.
Drink the last one first !

Not a big fan of most Lagers, but nothing worse than rushing one and tasting defects that will clean up over time. With Ales you can often rush them a bit and the "flavors" get in the way of the minor defects.
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Old 12-07-2011, 12:23 PM   #14
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This is from "How to Brew":

The lagering temperature and duration are affected by both the primary fermentation temperature and the yeast strain. These are the four primary factors that determine the final character of the beer. Some general guidelines for fermentation times and temperatures are listed below:


1. Check the yeast package information for recommended fermentation temperature(s).
2. The temperature difference between the primary phase and the lager phase should be roughly 10°F.
3. Nominal lagering times are 3 - 4 weeks at 45°F, 5 - 6 weeks at 40°F, or 7 - 8 weeks at 35°F.
4. Stronger beers need to be lagered longer.
5. Nothing is absolute. Brewing is both a science and an art.

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Old 12-07-2011, 01:11 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by osagedr

So...you are saying if you lager warmer, you can lager shorter? I've never heard that rule of thumb before.
Yup the longer lagering times are directly influenced by lower temps. Mlyday has the best response above to support this.

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Old 12-07-2011, 01:47 PM   #16
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There are two things accomplished by lagering. One is removal of diacetyl. This will occur faster at warmer temperatures. The second is clearing the beer. This occurs faster at colder temperatures. So a compromise must be struck. This is why many commercial outfits will slowly cool down over several days to the coldest point of their lagering, it gives some extra warmer time to remove diacetyl, before the clearing portion begins.

I usually keg up my lagers and then let them sit for a week at ~50 and then move them to my lagering chamber. However this often has more to do with pipeline management and no room in the chamber rather than a specific reason.

I find 1 month of cold lagering is plenty. I'll go longer for a bigger beer though.

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Old 12-07-2011, 01:51 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Exbeerienced View Post
The notion that lagers are horrendous until properly aged, I found to be one of the biggest brewing myths out there, strictly in my personal opinion.
Oh, lagers are usually drinkable long before "finished" lagering! I didn't say they were not, but they are usually better (crisper, clearer, etc) after lagering.


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So...you are saying if you lager warmer, you can lager shorter? I've never heard that rule of thumb before.
Yes, that is true as beer ages faster at a higher temperature. However, some things happen at a colder temperature that I like. A colder, longer lagering period tends to end up with a crisper, "cleaner", result. I lager at 34 degrees for 1 week for every 8 points of OG as a rule. I like the results.
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Old 12-07-2011, 02:00 PM   #18
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My experience with lagers thus far leads me to believe if it's clear & tastes good and you don't have any upcoming brewing contests, you're ready to roll. That being said I've never needed more than about 4 weeks.

One caveat; I'm not an AG brewer and I suspect the finished product of a mostly-extract recipe has a lot less nastiness that requires settling out. Don't know if that's true or not, but the worst thing I can say about what I've tasted out of a primary in a lager fermentation is a slight taste of sulfur that actually wouldn't be all that unpleasant in the beer...

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Old 12-07-2011, 02:40 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Exbeerienced View Post
The notion that lagers are horrendous until properly aged, I found to be one of the biggest brewing myths out there, strictly in my personal opinion. There may be some yeasts that put off a nasty smell initially, but I haven't used enough different varieties to run into one of them. Lagers typically aren't vile concoctions after primary!

By all means, you should at least try your beer young, at least if it's clear. Keg it up. It will age while carbonated. Judge for yourself. To deny yourself that opportunity (and gained experience) is crazy. Enjoy!

What you will hear is that lagers improve with age. My experience tells me the more pronounced flavors may settle out somewhat, allowing subtler flavors to come through, but this is a very slight swing in flavors and aroma. Nothing terribly dramatic.
I agree with this. I have been primarily brewing lagers for the last 8 months and have found that a mid gravity lager will be very good to drink after a month or so. I mean, I've even started clarifying my lagers with gelatin so I can serve them after being on tap a week. I also agree that they will get better the longer you let them lager.

I think the longer you let them lager, the less they will improve with each passing day, week, etc. That's not to say they won't get better, they will, it's just that the lagering process will 'slow down' the longer you go. If this doesn't make sense to the OP, I apologize. I feel like I'm swimming through mud trying to explain this.
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Old 12-07-2011, 02:45 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yooper View Post
Oh, lagers are usually drinkable long before "finished" lagering! I didn't say they were not, but they are usually better (crisper, clearer, etc) after lagering.




Yes, that is true as beer ages faster at a higher temperature. However, some things happen at a colder temperature that I like. A colder, longer lagering period tends to end up with a crisper, "cleaner", result. I lager at 34 degrees for 1 week for every 8 points of OG as a rule. I like the results.
As usual, Yooper has done an excellent job of summing things up. You don't have to lager at the temp and for the amount of time that Yooper does, but if you have the patience of a hybernating bear, go for it.

I have started brewing double batches of lager just for this reason. They last longer.
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