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Old 12-05-2010, 05:33 PM   #1
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Default WLP001/California Ale and Primary Ferment Temp

Brewed a Green Flash West Coast IPA yesterday. I've got the carboy in the basement and the stick-on thermometer is telling me the the wort is holding at 63F. It has been at this temp since the yeast was pitched - 24 hours ago. There is plenty of activity happening. Will I lose any character from the yeast by fermenting at 63F? Should I bump up the temp to 68F?

In a few days I will move upstairs and warm up to ~ 70 to help it clean up.

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Old 12-05-2010, 06:03 PM   #2
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I just brewed a Sierra Nevada Celebration clone with WLP001. It fermented the first 4 days at 60F, then I warmed it to 66F. I just tasted it after a week in the bottle & it came out great. I don't think you'll have a problem at 63F.

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Old 12-05-2010, 06:11 PM   #3
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I brewed a SN Pale Ale clone recently, deliberately holding the ferm temp in the low/mid 60's. Fermentation time extended to 1.5 weeks in primary, secondary for 1.5 weeks. The result was an extremely clean pale ale with very little yeast character, but also no off flavors at all. The hop character was very up-front.

I didn't know how it would go over, being almost TOO clean... however, I brought a full 5 gallon corny to a LHBS brewing event on a Saturday... the keg kicked in 7 hours. Apparently it didn't suck.

I think the OP will be happy with the results of low ferm temps, as long as the beer is not overly hopped (and even if it is).

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Old 12-05-2010, 06:39 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrewNow View Post
Brewed a Green Flash West Coast IPA yesterday. I've got the carboy in the basement and the stick-on thermometer is telling me the the wort is holding at 63F. It has been at this temp since the yeast was pitched - 24 hours ago. There is plenty of activity happening. Will I lose any character from the yeast by fermenting at 63F? Should I bump up the temp to 68F?

In a few days I will move upstairs and warm up to ~ 70 to help it clean up.
You might lose a bit of character, but there's not a strong ester profile associated with that strain. It'll be clean either way- a bit cleaner at 63, probably, but nothing I'd worry too much about.
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Old 12-06-2010, 03:38 PM   #5
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I recently brewed an IPA very similar to WCIPA with WLP001 @ 60°F, just racked it to secondary last night (2 weeks of primary), and it's clean and dry 1.010 (down from 1.066) which is slightly beyond the AA% WLP quotes.

I attribute this to proper pitching rate, and oxygenation of the wort prior to pitching. I think you'll like the clean fermentation you get at the lower end of the temperature range.

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Old 12-06-2010, 11:50 PM   #6
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Why ferment so cold with 001?
White labs recommends 68°-73°. I have fermented several batches at 68°-70° using 001 and they have been some of the best beers I have made...

Am I missing something by not fermenting colder?

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Old 12-07-2010, 02:06 PM   #7
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Why ferment so cold with 001?
White labs recommends 68°-73°. I have fermented several batches at 68°-70° using 001 and they have been some of the best beers I have made...

Am I missing something by not fermenting colder?
No, I don't think so, but some folks, especially in cooler climates, just have cold basements or keep their house cooler to save some serious money in the winter, and the 001 will accomodate that just fine. Fermented cool like that, it's said to give a "lager-like" quality, that is, it's ultra-clean. I fermented my last beer with the S-05 at 67, and it turned out great. My last house was in a colder climate and I fermented in a basement that stayed in the mid-50's all winter. The Chico strain and Nottingham were my friends there. It's just versatile, that's all.
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Old 12-07-2010, 02:11 PM   #8
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Elkdog hit it on the head, my basement happens to be 60° right now and I only have room for 1 fermenter in my temperature controlled lagering fridge, thus leaving me 3 options...

1) Stop brewing in the winter (not a serious option)
2) Brew only with SanFran Lager, or German Ale (ALT) (I can only handle so much California Common)
3) Mix in some Pales/IPA with a cleaner profile from a cooler fermentation.

You really can't go wrong with wlp001(1056, etc) unless its too hot IMHO. Just trust your hydrometer at cooler temperatures and realize you might need to warm up a little bit to get maximum attenuation.

Happy Brewing!

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Old 12-07-2010, 05:06 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reustonium View Post
Elkdog hit it on the head, my basement happens to be 60° right now and I only have room for 1 fermenter in my temperature controlled lagering fridge, thus leaving me 3 options...

1) Stop brewing in the winter (not a serious option)
2) Brew only with SanFran Lager, or German Ale (ALT) (I can only handle so much California Common)
3) Mix in some Pales/IPA with a cleaner profile from a cooler fermentation.

You really can't go wrong with wlp001(1056, etc) unless its too hot IMHO. Just trust your hydrometer at cooler temperatures and realize you might need to warm up a little bit to get maximum attenuation.

Happy Brewing!
You have another option...Kolsch yeast. It ferments down to 55F, and is super clean. I had to use this in a stout once because the apartment was just that cold.
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Old 12-07-2010, 05:28 PM   #10
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I love WLP001! It's my favorite yeast to use because it's so clean. I always ferment at 61-62F and attenuation is never a problem.

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