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Old 10-16-2009, 02:01 PM   #1
Noleafclover
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Default Lager Yeast Question

This weekend I'm brewing my first lager. The yeast strain I'm using is White Labs Oktoberfest. I figure I'll brew one now so I can enjoy it when I make another in March. I have a johnson controls unit to keep the fermentation temps at the right spot, etc etc.

However, I still have a simple question... Since lager yeast is a bottom fermenting yeast, does kreusen still form at the top of the beer when it's hanging out in the carboy?

Thanks,

Noleaf

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Old 10-16-2009, 02:07 PM   #2
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Yes, you still get krausen but it's not quite as tall/big as an ale krausen. That yeast is notorious for starting slow so be patient, aerate well, pitch a lot, etc. It can also throw a little sulphur so it might not smell that great during fermentation but the sulphur should go away with conditioning. It's great yeast though.

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Old 10-16-2009, 02:19 PM   #3
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The only visible difference between an ale fermentation and a lager fermentation is that the lager has a smaller, tighter/neater krausen... like this (this is high krausen on a lager with Saflager W-34/70, same as White Labs WLP830):

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Old 10-16-2009, 02:21 PM   #4
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Thanks! I made a big starter so I'm hopping that helps....

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Old 10-29-2009, 03:58 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Noleafclover View Post
Thanks! I made a big starter so I'm hopping that helps....
Curious how this is going for you. I used the same yeast it took over 48 hours to get going. There is allot of "suspension" that I hope will go away (maybe with Lagering). I have used lager yeasts before without Lagering and there wasn't 1/3 of the suspension I see in this after the same time span. Initially I wasn't going to lager this but I have heard such praise on the "Malt profile" of this yeast that I'm considering it. I have to decide this weekend.
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Old 10-29-2009, 08:38 PM   #6
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After about 48 hours it began bubbling with the temp at 52 F. Two weeks later it's still bubbling off and on at the same temp. This one is in a plastic bucket so I can't really see how the kreusen looks. My plan was just to let it roll and see what happens.

The freezer it is in smells like sulphur too.

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Old 11-04-2009, 03:19 AM   #7
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Hey NoLeaf,

I have used this yeast with the same effect of sulfur, the fridge Smelled like my bedroom after a night of sour beer. I would have to say i do prefer the other german strains for lagers, they are a bit cleaner but all are good if you pitch right and keep em cool. You should for sure harvest the yeast and repitch. I have found that especially with lagers the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th gen yeast is way better than the first pitch.

Glad to hear your doing lagers now...thay the bomb.

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Old 11-04-2009, 03:33 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by menschmaschine View Post
The only visible difference between an ale fermentation and a lager fermentation is that the lager has a smaller, tighter/neater krausen... like this (this is high krausen on a lager with Saflager W-34/70, same as White Labs WLP830):

are those 5 gallon batches in a 6 gallon bottle?
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Old 11-04-2009, 04:16 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by menschmaschine View Post
The only visible difference between an ale fermentation and a lager fermentation is that the lager has a smaller, tighter/neater krausen... like this (this is high krausen on a lager with Saflager W-34/70, same as White Labs WLP830):

Very neat sir. Neat indeed!
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Old 11-04-2009, 12:31 PM   #10
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Quote:
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are those 5 gallon batches in a 6 gallon bottle?
Those are 6 gallon BBs. As for the batch size, the end volume is 10 gallons total. There is probably 5+ gallons in each of those. I brew 11 or 12 gallon batches, depending on how one looks at it ("loss to boil trub").
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