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Old 01-28-2014, 01:23 AM   #1
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Default Fermentation temp

I just brewed an Irish stout with Nottingham yeast. According to the manufacturer, its preferred temperature is 57-70°F. From what I've gathered it is best to ferment at the lower end of this range.

I've got my fermentor in a spare room that doesn't get much heat, and I have the window cracked to bring the temperature down more. When I walk in the room it seems FREEZING in there, but the stick-on thermometer on my carboy says the temperature is somewhere between 66-68°. It has been in this room for about 4hrs, no signs of fermentation yet (not that I'm expecting anything this soon).

So this seems like a decent temperature to ferment at, but I still can't help but think its too cold in there to promote fermentation. Even though the thermometer says its okay (if not kind of high) my skin tells me otherwise!

So what should I do... RDWHAHB? Open the window more to try and bring the temp to the lower 60's?

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Old 01-28-2014, 01:44 AM   #2
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I vote for RDWHAHB as it sounds like you have the bases covered.

Did you sprinkle the yeast in dry or rehydrate?

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Old 01-28-2014, 01:50 AM   #3
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I vote for RDWHAHB as it sounds like you have the bases covered.

Did you sprinkle the yeast in dry or rehydrate?
I rehydrated the yeast. I was freaking out a little bit because I rehydrated far earlier than what the instructions on the manufacturer's website suggested, but then I searched these forums for threads about rehydrating early and was met with a reassuring RDWHAHB. My rehydrated yeast was about 74° when I pitched it into 70° wort, I wasn't able to get all the frothiness into the fermentor but I think that I got most of it.
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Old 01-28-2014, 01:52 AM   #4
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Your wort is probably still cooling down. When it gets down to 60° close the window.
It is better to pitch the yeast in wort that needs to warm a few degrees to get to fermentation temperature. Less stress on the yeast.

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Old 01-28-2014, 01:54 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by dsaavedra View Post
I just brewed an Irish stout with Nottingham yeast. According to the manufacturer, its preferred temperature is 57-70°F. From what I've gathered it is best to ferment at the lower end of this range.

But the stick-on thermometer on my carboy says the temperature is somewhere between 66-68°. It has been in this room for about 4hrs, no signs of fermentation yet (not that I'm expecting anything this soon).

So what should I do... RDWHAHB? Open the window more to try and bring the temp to the lower 60's?
Let it ride right where its at. Notty likes it a little cool and mid to low 60's is about right. Some will recommend even cooler.

Remember that the yeast is generating heat during the initial fermentation period. The fermenting beer will be 5-10F higher than the room temp because of this. So keep the fermenter in the low 60's for the first few days and it will be fine.
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Old 01-28-2014, 01:57 AM   #6
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Your wort is probably still cooling down. When it gets down to 60° close the window.
It is better to pitch the yeast in wort that needs to warm a few degrees to get to fermentation temperature. Less stress on the yeast.
So you think I should have cooled my wort to the low 60's before I pitched yeast? I thought that pitching at 70° was pretty standard (maybe I'm just terribly misinformed )?

I think closing the window when (if) it gets down to 60 is a good idea. I will still leave the carboy on the floor in front of the window so it stays cool though.
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Old 01-28-2014, 02:00 AM   #7
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So you think I should have cooled my wort to the low 60's before I pitched yeast? I thought that pitching at 70° was pretty standard (maybe I'm just terribly misinformed )?

I think closing the window when (if) it gets down to 60 is a good idea. I will still leave the carboy on the floor in front of the window so it stays cool though.
70 is spot on for pitching. I use Notty a lot and have had consistently excellent results with it. I pitch in the mid 70's, set the fermenter to 63-64F and put the bucket in and forget it. By the next day its bubbling like a champ. In about 8-9 days its done.
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Old 01-28-2014, 02:01 AM   #8
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Let it ride right where its at. Notty likes it a little cool and mid to low 60's is about right. Some will recommend even cooler.

Remember that the yeast is generating heat during the initial fermentation period. The fermenting beer will be 5-10F higher than the room temp because of this. So keep the fermenter in the low 60's for the first few days and it will be fine.
Just checked it again. The stick-on thermometer is right at 66° now. I cracked the window a little more to try and bring the temp down a few more degrees.

On the bright side, I heard 3 weak little bubbles coming out of my blow-off tube while I was checking the temperature!
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Old 01-28-2014, 02:03 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by dsaavedra View Post
I rehydrated the yeast. I was freaking out a little bit because I rehydrated far earlier than what the instructions on the manufacturer's website suggested, but then I searched these forums for threads about rehydrating early and was met with a reassuring RDWHAHB. My rehydrated yeast was about 74° when I pitched it into 70° wort, I wasn't able to get all the frothiness into the fermentor but I think that I got most of it.
Then I think you're totally good, my friend, and just seeing some normal lag time. The 4° difference in temp is fine, IMHO.
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Old 01-28-2014, 02:08 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by dsaavedra View Post
So you think I should have cooled my wort to the low 60's before I pitched yeast? I thought that pitching at 70° was pretty standard (maybe I'm just terribly misinformed )?

I think closing the window when (if) it gets down to 60 is a good idea. I will still leave the carboy on the floor in front of the window so it stays cool though.
Yes. Next time cool the wort to below pitching temperatures, and ferment on the cool side of the yeast strain's range. It makes a better beer.

I generally chill my wort to 62 degrees, and then ferment at 64-66 degrees for most ale yeast strains.
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