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Old 01-29-2009, 04:47 PM   #1
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Default Adding krausen to lager secondary

First the disclaimer: I didn't read Kaiser's page until after I brewed this Pils.

In Kaiser's Fermenting Lagers wiki page he states that adding krausen when racking to the secondary can be beneficial. I'm wondering if I should try it this weekend...here's the deal:

I brewed a Bohemian Pils on 1/17/09. I pitched warm in the afternoon @ 68o F, saw signs of fermentation that night and put it in the fridge (50o F) and it was blowing off the next morning. It seemed to ferment similar to an ale...i.e. quick blowoff and fairly rapid fermentation for a few days then it really slowed. At this point it appears to have been done for at least several days (I generally don't muck around in my brews so I almost never take gravity readings mid-ferment). I've kept it at 50o F since but lowered it to 48o F last night. I used Wyeast Bohemian Pils #2124 Propagator (high flocc) in a small ~500mL starter (I probably under-pitched by a good amount).

I'm brewing a Vienna on Saturday using White Labs WLP820 Oktoberfest/Marzen yeast (in a too small starter...I'm working to improve this gonna step it up tonight). This is a lower flocc yeast than the Pils yeast. I want to pitch cold this time. This might take longer to start and reach krausen.

So...do you think it would be worth it to try and add krausen from the Vienna to the Pils? I was gonna rack the Pils tonight but then thought maybe I should wait until I can add the Vienna krausen to the Pils. Does the fact that my Pils underwent a fast fermentation and has (allegedly) been done for days mean that it probably NEEDS the krausen? Wow, this got long...I'll shut up now. Any help/comments appreciated.

EDIT: If it matters...the Pils OG was 1.051 and the Vienna should be ~1.054.

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Old 01-29-2009, 05:00 PM   #2
menschmaschine
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The only down side to this is that they're two different beers. So, it depends on how much and how it will affect color, flavor, etc. Otherwise, I think it would be a good idea if you can spare the beer. Did you do a D-rest on the Pils? If not, and since you pitched warm, I'd do it (krausen beer) if you're thinking about it. It might clean things up a bit and may also help get a slightly better attenuation.

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Old 01-29-2009, 05:25 PM   #3
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Thanks mensch. No I haven't done a D-rest...that's just letting the temp go up to 60 or so for a couple of days right? If I do the Vienna-krausen thing that would probably give me the time to do a D-rest.

I was a bit concerned with color...this Vienna should be a touch lighter than the style guidelines (SRM should be ~7-ish). But I didn't think you added all that much krausen beer so...wasn't sure about the color issue. I'm guessing the flavor difference will be very small.

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Old 01-29-2009, 06:01 PM   #4
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I wouldn't bother with the Krausen technique unless you take a gravity reading and find that it's still too high. I can't imagine there's too much of a benefit from doing it otherwise.

Also, you're probably past the point of being able to do an effective D-rest.

Fermentation still needs to be active, slowing down but active, for it work from what I know.

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