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Old 08-10-2010, 10:16 PM   #1
jorpandolfo
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Default Kolsch Yeast and Fermentation

So go figure, my minifridge can't fit my 6.5 gallon primary into it for my kolsch beer that I'm planning on brewing. I was planning on keeping it around 65 degrees or so just because I've heard the kolsch is an ale with lager characteristics such as fermentation temp, but it won't fit. Are there are any possibilities around this problem? And, will fermentation at 70 or a bit higher seriously affect the beer?

Also, the yeast strain I'm using, WLP029, for the beer seemed to have small clumps or strands inside the vile. I don't know if that's natural or maybe it got too cold. Does that sound off?

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Old 08-10-2010, 11:04 PM   #2
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I did a kolsch at room temp (75 degrees) and it came out fine, no off flavors. I used the wyeast kolsch yeast, though.
I think kolsch is more ale than lager.

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Old 08-10-2010, 11:32 PM   #3
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Ok I was thinking it wouldn't have too much of an effect on the beer. Can anyone answer my question about the consistency of the yeast that I saw in the vile?

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Old 08-11-2010, 01:43 AM   #4
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i'm sure the yeast is fine, yeast tends to clump and different strains can look totally different from one another. are you planning to do a starter or just pitching it? what kind of fermenter are you using? a bucket might fit if you're trying a carboy. 70 will likely work, cooler would reduce the formation of esters, but i'm sure it'll taste fine.

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Old 08-11-2010, 02:57 AM   #5
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The WLP029 really likes to clump up tight in the vile. But it will be a great yeast and is actually a low floccuator in the bucket.

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Old 08-11-2010, 03:15 AM   #6
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I know the Wyeast description states that it will yield more fruity esters at higher temps. I have only done one Kolsch with it, at 55F, and it came out great.

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Old 08-11-2010, 03:18 AM   #7
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It'll be a good beer, but probably not like a true Kolsch which has very minimal esthers.

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Old 08-11-2010, 12:36 PM   #8
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My last batch was Edwort's Kolsch, and the vile of WLP029 I bought was all clumped up too. I made a starter, and the beer is turning out great. Ed's post says it'll be even better @ 8 weeks. I remembered that while drinking it at 5 weeks and thought pish posh. I had a glass last night @ just under 7 weeks, and sure enough it's still getting better. Very refreshing!

(I fermented at 67F.)

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Old 08-11-2010, 12:41 PM   #9
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You will definitely get some hardcore fruitiness. I've done several Kolsch's, all with Wyeast 2565, and have experimented with the temperature. My favorite is right around 62 degrees. There is an easily noticeable difference between the lowest I've done (59 degrees) and the highest I've done (65 degrees). These measurements are based on a Ranco probe taped to the side of the fermenter. Actual fermentation temp is probably a bit higher.

Definitely needs some cold lagering for a month or so. I usually do 10 days of cold crash (for clarity) followed by 3 weeks in the keg while carbing.

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Old 08-11-2010, 01:55 PM   #10
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You can always do a bucket-in-a-bucket budget fermentation temperature control.
You need a bucket which can hold your fermentation bucket, plus a little extra (so the water acts as a temperature buffer, in case either the environment or the fermenting liquid decides to spike on you), one inlet and one outlet (each with a current limiter .. ball valve comes to mind) and mixed input water, set to the temperature that you want.

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