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Old 01-16-2013, 10:04 PM   #1
Oct 2012
Posts: 6

This is my first batch and I am curious as to how long it needs to ferment before I bottle it. The directions say ferment in primary for two weeks the transfer to Carboy for two weeks. The directions also say if you do not transfer and lager the brew to let it set for additional time to allow the lager yeast to ferment in the primary. So how long should it sit in the primary to ferment without lathering the brew?

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Old 01-16-2013, 10:19 PM   #2
TopherM's Avatar
Mar 2011
St. Petersburg, FL
Posts: 3,974
Liked 450 Times on 355 Posts

The Oktoberfest style is a lager that is defined by the caramel taste and crisp, lagered aftertaste. You can't get that crisp, clean lagered aftertaste without pretty strict temp control during fermentation and a long, cold lagering period.

Are you sure this came with lager yeast? I didn't know Brewer's Best did any lagers. What yeast is it? Lagers are a bit more involved than Ales, so it doesn't really make a good first beer. They require pretty strict temperture control that you probably don't have. If you can, swing by your brew shop and pick up a packet of S-05 ale yeast. You'll still make a good beer, and won't have to worry about the lagering process.

Assuming it is a lager yeast, here's what you are SUPPOSED to do:

1) Follow the directions and do two weeks primary at about 50 degrees F.

2) Take the beer off temp control and let it sit at room temp for 48 hours. This is called the diacetyl rest.

3) Transfer to secondary carboy, being sure to leave most of the yeast cake behind (the sludge at the bottom).

4) Lager at 30-34 degrees F for 8-12 weeks.

5) Take out of temp control and let it sit at room temp for about 24 hours.

6) Follow the instructions for bottling/carb/conditioning.

If you do go get a packet of S-05 and do this as an Ale, you just need to leave the beer in the primary fermenter at about 60F for 3-4 weeks, then follow the bottling/carb/conditioning process (about 2-3 more weeks). The beer with taste pretty much the same as the intended Oktoberfest recipe minus the crisp, lagered aftertaste.

Hope that helps!
Primary #1 - Midnight Ryeder (Midnight Wheat and Rye)
Primary #2 - Florida Weiss
Primary #3 - Kane-DOH APA (Honey Citra APA)
Secondary #1 - Downtown Flanders Brown (brewed August 2012)
Keg #1 - Raspberry Florida Weiss
Keg #2 - Cinnamon Raisin Cider
Keg #3 - NONE!
Bottled - NONE!

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