Carbing should always be at about 70 degrees, sugar, DME, honey, lots of ways to add sugar to carb.
The theory of slow temp reduction is to keep the yeast active, but IMO if you're lagering below 40 the yeast aren't very active anyhow. I actually like to drop temps slow and lager at 40 for this reason. Takes longer, never tried a side-by-side comparison. I have a huge pipeline, so an extra month lagering doesn't hurt much.
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