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Old 01-01-2013, 02:02 PM   #1
THEUKRAINIAN
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Default First lager advice

Hello all, last night I brewed a match of lager, my first. I pitched last night at 89f last night and chilled to 66F this morning. My concern is this large "pus" mass floating in my beer.

Thoughts?
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Old 01-01-2013, 02:03 PM   #2
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Yeast!
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Old 01-01-2013, 02:23 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aiptasia
Yeast!
Hahaha! Cali lager wyeast 2112 looks like that? Learned something new today. Sorry noob at beer making. What other expectations do I have to be aware of while fermenting this pus monster?
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Old 01-01-2013, 02:33 PM   #4
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Patience. The lagering process usually starts with a warmer pitching and initial ferment at say 65-70 degrees F for a day to help the yeast multiply and gorge themselves on the malt sugar. Then, you drop the temperature on the yeast and let it lager for two to six weeks at 45f to 55f depending on the yeast strain.
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Old 01-01-2013, 02:40 PM   #5
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Every lager yeast I've seen has that fibrous clumpy look to it. It floats up in chunky rafts, and then sinks back down over and over again.
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Old 01-01-2013, 02:58 PM   #6
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So have anyone experienced any fusels and esters when doing a warm pitch of lager yeast?
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Old 01-01-2013, 03:51 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aiptasia
Patience. The lagering process usually starts with a warmer pitching and initial ferment at say 65-70 degrees F for a day to help the yeast multiply and gorge themselves on the malt sugar. Then, you drop the temperature on the yeast and let it lager for two to six weeks at 45f to 55f depending on the yeast strain.
Thanks! I was concerned I pitched it at way to high a temperature and killed it. I was expecting a krousen and aggressive bubbling. This thing is as very docile.
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Old 01-01-2013, 04:31 PM   #8
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The advice about high temperature pitching and initial fermentation is contrary to nearly everything I've read on the subject. For my own, I have pitched in the mid-40s and then slowly raised to around 50F for most of the fermentation. The optimal temperature depends on the particular strain.

This depends on pitching a large quantity of yeast---a 1-gallon starter is typical for an optimal pitch rate for even a moderate gravity lager, and larger is not uncommon. If you go the high-temperature start route, you're essentially making a starter in your finished beer. It'll work, but from what I understand (and have seen hints of in my own projects), you are probably going to get some funk in there. With a starter, you can decant and dispose of the funk.

But people do it all sorts of ways. I will say that none of my lagers have looked anything like that photo (though photos of carboys are hard to take well, so it may be reflections off the glass). They do typically start more slowly than ales, but I've had pretty similar churning with a foamy Krausen on top. My experience is limited to one strain (WLP833), though, and others may look different.
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Old 01-01-2013, 04:32 PM   #9
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I wouldn't pitch ANY yeast over 75 degrees, and especially not lager yeast.

next time, chill your wort first, and then add the yeast!
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Old 01-01-2013, 05:35 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yooper View Post
I wouldn't pitch ANY yeast over 75 degrees, and especially not lager yeast.

next time, chill your wort first, and then add the yeast!

Agreed. Pitching a lager yeast @ 89F and letting it sit overnight is asking for trouble. Keep a close eye on it. It's possible it will be OK but watch out for funk in the form of fusels and phenols.
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