What happens when you substitute ale yeast for lager yeast? - Home Brew Forums
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Old 11-01-2005, 04:32 PM   #1
Thor
 
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I understand that California Common beers (e.g. Anchor Steam, commercially) involve using lager yeast at ale fermentation temperatures. Papazian (Joy Of Home Brewing) states that ale and lager yeasts can be substituted for one another, either way (ale for lager or vice versa).

What might happen if I used an ale yeast in a lager recipe, and fermented at ale temperatures (72 degrees or so)? Does anyone have experience with this?

I was wondering whether I might still get a lager-type beer, perhaps with a slightly different flavor. My goal is to brew a tasty lager-like beer without having to ferment at lower lager temperatures.

Thanks!


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Old 11-01-2005, 04:36 PM   #2
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the recipes for beer are pretty 'generic'. Ie; it doesn't become a lager or an ale until you add the appropriate yeast.

If you brew a 'lager recipe' with an ale yeast and use ale temperatures, you are just brewing an ale. Switch the yeast and temp, and you have a lager.

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Old 11-01-2005, 04:48 PM   #3
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I should expand on that a bit...

there are certain ingredients that appear more often in one type (lager or ale) than in the other type. Specifically, I'm thinking of corn and rice which are often used in a lager and does impart some unique flavors. But, that does not mean that adding corn or rice to a beer makes it necessarily a lager... that's all determined by the yeast and temp.

I think if you want some of the flavor commonly associated with a lager, but want to make an ale (ie; ale yeast and ale temps) you can probably add some corn and/or rice to your ale.

I personally don't like the flavors that corn and rice add, but if you do, then by all means... throw some in your ale and start fermenting!

Go for it.

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Old 11-01-2005, 05:32 PM   #4
drengel
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there is really only one lager yeast that you can use at those high temps and that is the san fran lager yeast. it will do well up to 68 or so degrees. ive had a bad experience using pilsner lager yeast at 66 degrees, it produced incredibly off flavors in my steam beer, which was eventually chunked, and in my friends vienna pilsner, which he hasnt chunked. but probably should. i couldnt even drink the steam beer. also those took like 3 weeks to ferment. because both used the same yeast type, and wre sitting next to each other in my cellar which is a constant 66 degrees, and the off flavors (fruity nastiness) werre similar, were pretty sure it was the yeast being at the wrong temperature. in short, i would only use the san fran lager yeast at higher temps, it will prouce clean crisp lager type characteristics.

 
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Old 11-01-2005, 11:33 PM   #5
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I know a lot of people use Nottingham for lager recipe's at ale temps.

I'm getting a shipment of samples from Lallemand/Danstar and will be using it in the next batch if they arrive on time. A ubrew near me uses Nottingham for all their "lagers". 75% of his customers are making commercial lager clones.

I've mentioned this another thread.
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthread.php?t=3214
You can also try EC1118 champagne yeast if you want a clean profile at ale temps. It works from 45 to 95F.

I'm going to be talking to the wyeast rep. I'll ask what they suggest.
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Old 11-02-2005, 04:30 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Denny's Brew
I know a lot of people use Nottingham for lager recipe's at ale temps.

I'm getting a shipment of samples from Lallemand/Danstar and will be using it in the next batch if they arrive on time. A ubrew near me uses Nottingham for all their "lagers". 75% of his customers are making commercial lager clones.
What is a ubrew?

Using Nottingham for lagers...interesting!

Thor: I'd use the above mentioned San Fran lager yeast (WLP810 or Wyeast 2112) if you want an ale to turn out light and crisp like a lager. I've done a california common with that yeast before and it was nice. The cooler you can ferment it, the better I think.
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Old 02-15-2011, 09:18 PM   #7
rycov
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so i was wanting to do a maibock but don't have temp control yet. should i use san fran lager yeast? or just some sort of ale and not worry about it? the one guy said champagne at ale temps. does that work? i know it wont be exactly to style. im ok with that. just wondering wich will get me closest or give me better results. (also i know this thread is old. i just didnt want to start a new one.
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I'm getting ingredients in the mail today, and I can't even taste my beer yet. What should I do?
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I would make a yeast starter, and pitch it into your mailbox.

 
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Old 02-15-2011, 10:24 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rycov View Post
so i was wanting to do a maibock but don't have temp control yet. should i use san fran lager yeast? or just some sort of ale and not worry about it? the one guy said champagne at ale temps. does that work? i know it wont be exactly to style. im ok with that. just wondering wich will get me closest or give me better results. (also i know this thread is old. i just didnt want to start a new one.
I'd recommend doing it with a very clean ale yeast like nottingham, and doing it as cool as you can. If you can do it at 58-65 degrees (beer temp, not air temp), it should be pretty "clean" like a lager. I would NOT use champagne or other wine yeast.
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Old 02-15-2011, 11:06 PM   #9
rycov
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yeah. i was thinking that sounded weird. thanks Yooper
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrk00k View Post
I'm getting ingredients in the mail today, and I can't even taste my beer yet. What should I do?
Quote:
Originally Posted by jsweet View Post
I would make a yeast starter, and pitch it into your mailbox.

 
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Old 03-28-2011, 07:58 PM   #10
meisterbrewer
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Interesting. I've been using nottingham for all my brews. So, being that I want to brew a bud clone (just to show I can, not cuz it's the end all be all of my brewing) I'll just stick with that, and add some rice, maybe corn. I dunno, the last light colored ale I tried to brew didn't come out light, pretty much amber. Probably I used to much LME, I'm told. So it'll just be xtra light DME and rice syrup. Does it matter if the rice syrup is liquid, or is solid ok? Rice syrup solids is all they had at the store.



 
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