Originally Posted by rwinzing
I have recently switched to all grain and decided to make my first lager. It is a german pils. I pitched the yeast (white labs pilsner) they recomend pitching at 70-75 and then fermenting at 50-55. I pitched at 70 then placed in frig and took right to 52. It was made on Saturday and nothing has started. Should I have waited to place in frig until fermentation has begun?
Keg 1- Wit (AG)
Keg 2- empty
Keg 3- empty
Primary 1-IPA (AG)
Primary 2-Pilsner (AG)
Primary 3-Pumpkin Ale (AG)
In my opinion, no. But, I don't agree with those package instructions.
First, take a look at mrmalty.com, and check out the "pitching calculator". Usually for lagers, you make a huge starter to increase the cell count before pitching. That's what I do- make an enormous starter, and then pitch at fermentation temperatures (usually 50 degrees). The reason is simple- I don't pitch my ales at 90 degrees and wait for them to start before lowering them to 70 degrees. Likewise, I don't pitch my lagers 20 degrees too warm either.
If you didnt' make a starter, you're in for a long lag time. Just wait it out. Yo-yoing the temps isn't good for the beer, but if you pitched less than optimal amounts of yeast, it'll take a good long time for them to get going. I think the instructions on the yeast packages are terrible- if you wait until signs of fermentation are visible, by the time you get the fermenter to 50 degrees, 80% of the fermentation would be over. Just wait it out, if you can.
If your sanitation was good, fermentation with the lager yeast should start soon.