Lager clarity - Home Brew Forums

Register Now!
Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Techniques > Lager clarity

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 05-10-2009, 03:53 AM   #1
Stout Man
Recipes 
 
Aug 2007
California
Posts: 90


I am wondering if I can use bentonite in the secondary for my lager. I will have harvested the yeast from the primary to add back into the beer just prior to bottling so it carbonates.

I have use polyclar in the secondary twice, getting fair results, but I am out and wonder if bentonite is acceptable. I have used it before in some mead.

I already hit the kettle with irish moss so I'm just throwing the bentonite option out there. I'm just wondering if I can get my beer as clear as beer I buy at the store. If I can't using this fairly easy method then I don't care. I'm not about to spend the money on a force filtration system.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2009, 02:01 PM   #2
Pangea
Recipes 
 
Apr 2009
Lafayette, LA
Posts: 312
Liked 4 Times on 4 Posts


From what I've read, you should consider gelatin. Search forum for gelatin, posts by Biermuncher. I've yet to use, but aparently works like a charm for clearing after fermentation.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2009, 02:30 PM   #3
Yooper
Ale's What Cures You!
HBT_ADMIN.png
 
Yooper's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Jun 2006
UP of Michigan, Winter Texan
Posts: 69,231
Liked 7732 Times on 5426 Posts


Usually, lagers will clear up beautifully without any finings at all. The long period of cold conditioning means that any chill haze will be gone, and all the excess yeast suspended will also fall out. Before you fine it, maybe lager it for 10 weeks or so to see if it's going to need finings. I would bet you don't need it.
__________________
Broken Leg Brewery
Giving beer a leg to stand on since 2006

 
Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2009, 03:45 PM   #4
menschmaschine
 
menschmaschine's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Jun 2007
Delaware
Posts: 3,272
Liked 41 Times on 33 Posts


Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoopernatrix View Post
Usually, lagers will clear up beautifully without any finings at all.
+1. I don't use any kettle or fermenter finings on my lagers, I lager for 6 weeks (on average and depending on OG), and my lagers come out very clear.
__________________
END TRANSMISSION

 
Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2009, 08:09 PM   #5
wedward
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
 
wedward's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Feb 2009
Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 120
Liked 2 Times on 2 Posts


After reading most of Kai's Wiki <LINK> I found Steve Tolle's presentation on German Brewing which had some interesting info on clarifying. Mostly said Polyclar, Isinglas and all not used but Silica Gel is as well as some filtration (DE & Cellulose).

I'm still waiting on my first Lager to finish fermenting to see how well the lager only method will work. Gonna follow menschmachine's rule of thumb for 6 weeks. If still not very clear, MAYBE some gelatin...

 
Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2009, 11:02 PM   #6
passedpawn
Waste Allocation Load Lifter - Earth Class
HBT_ADMIN.png
 
passedpawn's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Apr 2009
☼ Clearwater, FL ☼
Posts: 25,882
Liked 6712 Times on 3965 Posts


I lagered a Warsteiner Pils. Added gelatin when transferred to secondary. After 2 wks in secondary and about 8 days in bottle, it is remarkably clear. It is like the real thing. Really.

I suspect it will get better in a couple weeks, but I can never wait!

 
Reply With Quote
Old 05-11-2009, 08:54 AM   #7
Stout Man
Recipes 
 
Aug 2007
California
Posts: 90

My problem is I don't have a spare fridge to do the process of lagering. Right now I'm basically keeping my primary in a square plastic bucket that I occasionally add a gallon of ice to. I can keep the temp between 50-55 without much effort but when actually lagering the beer isn't the temp supposed to be around 40? That I can't do and may skip, instead keeping the secondary around 50 for a couple weeks.

I'd really like to get a mini fridge or some old fridge someone is dumping, but I haven't found anything on craigslist.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 05-11-2009, 11:42 AM   #8
Yooper
Ale's What Cures You!
HBT_ADMIN.png
 
Yooper's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Jun 2006
UP of Michigan, Winter Texan
Posts: 69,231
Liked 7732 Times on 5426 Posts


I lager at 34 degrees, for 8-10 weeks depending on what I'm making. Without the lagering phase, it's not really a lager.

You could always bottle the beer, then allow it to carb up and lager it in the bottle in the fridge. It'd be really hard to have beer cold in the fridge for 8 weeks or so and not drink it though!
__________________
Broken Leg Brewery
Giving beer a leg to stand on since 2006

 
Reply With Quote
Old 05-11-2009, 03:18 PM   #9
Catt22
Recipes 
 
Jan 2009
Posts: 4,998
Liked 70 Times on 63 Posts


My lagers are always brilliantly clear. The trick is to lager for at least six weeks and even longer if you have the patience for it. I lager very cold at 29 F and typically for eight weeks. I check the progress weekly. Lagering in glass allows you to watch it clear over time. There will normally be a distinct level above which the beer will be perfectly clear and below that it will be hazy. You can actually see the haze level drop as the lagering progresses. I like to shine a flashlight through the side of the carboy and look through from the opposite side. It's encouraging to see it drop day by day and from that you can estimate when the lagering will be complete. Sometimes I will drop the temp gradually until I see an ice layer begin to form on the surface, then back off a degree or two. Depending on the alcohol content, the freezing point will vary by a degree or so from beer to beer. Lagering is cool...that's both a pun and a fact!

 
Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-2009, 06:47 AM   #10
Stout Man
Recipes 
 
Aug 2007
California
Posts: 90

I was able to get a free 9.5 cu ft kenmore fridge off craigslist, hurray!

I have a much better shot at lagering now.

 
Reply With Quote
Reply
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
clarity sidebung Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 4 04-18-2008 03:33 AM
Clarity tooomanycolors Mead Forum 16 12-14-2007 12:22 AM
clarity Jack Cider Forum 2 11-30-2007 03:44 PM
PM clarity Cos All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing 4 10-23-2007 04:10 PM
Clarity The Happy Mug Extract Brewing 13 12-02-2005 11:38 AM


Forum Jump