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Old 09-03-2008, 07:59 PM   #1
JerD
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Default Lager Temp Question

With the cooler weather approaching I'm thinking about brewing some Lagers. How important are stable temps? I would be lagering in the garage later in the year. The garage normally stays around 45-55 degrees in late fall and early winter, but with an exceptionally cold night or warm day, the garage temp may swing a bit when the door gets opened and take some time to get back to where it was. Should I hold off Lagers until I get a for sure way of temp control or go ahead and see what happens? I was thinking of maybe just brewing a couple batches in mid to late October and once transferred to secondaries, leave them alone in the garage until things start warming up(April maybe).

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Old 09-03-2008, 09:38 PM   #2
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Stable Fermentation temps are important for the yeast however when actually lagering the yeast is dropped out. So what I'm saying is the 2-3 weeks you are fermenting at around 50 degrees try and control the temps the best you can.

Then to really do it right its best to drop the temp down 2-3 degrees every day until you get down to 32-40 and then hold it there.


FYI I had a lager once that my brewbuddy forgot to plug our freezer in after using a saw. This was like a 1 month old lager at the time. This was in the dead of summer and that beer sat at about 95 degrees for a good 7 days before I noticed. This beer was amazing one of the smoothest lagers I have ever tasted. I haven't tried this technique since.

My point is go for it it may not be the best lager you ever had but if you do it right it will be good.

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Old 09-03-2008, 09:58 PM   #3
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I am wondering about room temperature lagering after all the fermentation is done and most of the yeast is removed.

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Old 09-03-2008, 10:08 PM   #4
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I made some great Lagers last fall with the fermenters sitting on the back porch in the shade during the day, and I brought them in at night when the temp on the fermenter read 40F. I had temps ranging between 40-58F. Really the only effort I took to control the temp was to bring them indoors before going to bed if it was going to be very cold and then putting them back outside in the morning.

One other thing that I did was to use WLP810 - San Francisco Lager yeast though. It ferments well down in to the 40s, and also tolerates higher temperatures as well - so I figured that yeast would give me a little margin of error in case I overslept and didn't get the beers back outside in the shade early enough in the morning.

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Old 09-05-2008, 07:12 PM   #5
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I am wondering though about if you had a good clean fermentation and got all the way ready to transfer to a lagering tank. After crashing your yeast with cold at 3*F drop per day until you are at 33*F for a week or two, would you be ok to age your beer at room temperature since the yeast has already done its thing under strictly controlled conditions? You dropped it out as best you could prior to transferring to your secondary/serving vessel (in my case) so I am wondering what effect this would have. I have never done a lager in anything but a huge unitank that finished completely inside it. First homemade lager and I have no dedicated cold storage space, only fermentation space. Like I said the vast majority of the yeast would be left behind after transfer so what would happen in the case I presented?

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