Altbier fermentation temperature schedule - Home Brew Forums
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Old 01-26-2013, 05:37 AM   #1
Zippox
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Jun 2012
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I have an Excelsior Altbier kit that I will be making shortly and I read that at least at some point it is best to ferment this thing cold. So I bought a big tub and froze a bunch of water bottles.

My question is, can someone tell me what the best fermentation schedule is to follow? Should I start at a low temp, and if so, what temp? And how about for secondary, temp and length?

I'm looking for a timeline with temperatures. Thanks!



 
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Old 01-26-2013, 12:48 PM   #2
rkbarnes82
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Which yeast are you using?



 
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Old 01-26-2013, 01:57 PM   #3

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Originally Posted by rkbarnes82
Which yeast are you using?
^this...a true alt, using a true alt yeast should be fermented cooler than most other ales, but it really depends on the yeast.

IF you have a true alt yeast (or kolsch yeast)....ferment in the upper 50s-low 60s. After it's done I like to ramp the temp up to the mid-high 60s to ensure a complete fermentation. Then, lager it for a few weeks before bottling. Basically alts lie in the range between ales and lagers - fermented warmer than lagers but cooler than most ales. You can think of them as a stepping stone to full lager brewing.
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Old 01-26-2013, 05:24 PM   #4
Zippox
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I have Muntons dry yeast, and I should have a safale-04 lying around. I'm willing to make this thing as legit as possible, and if the yeast I have won't give me that, which do you guys recommend?

If I end up getting a liquid yeast (have yet to do that), will I need to make a starter?

 
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Old 01-26-2013, 06:17 PM   #5
Zippox
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I guess they were supposed to give me us-05. Should I get that one for the alt? Midwest said i could ise german ale 1007 from wyeast or White labs #029 if I wanted liquid.

 
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Old 01-26-2013, 06:45 PM   #6

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Originally Posted by Zippox
I guess they were supposed to give me us-05. Should I get that one for the alt? Midwest said i could ise german ale 1007 from wyeast or White labs #029 if I wanted liquid.
Personally, I would go with the German ale liquid yeast. It's really the yeast that makes this style. Best would be white labs alt strain if you can get it...might be a seasonal yeast though.
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Old 01-27-2013, 03:27 AM   #7
Zippox
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I'm probably now obligated to purchase an Erlenmeyer flask and some DME now I assume. Probably can't just pitch the liquid yeast straight in, right? Seeing as this is nearly a lager, I'll probably need a higher yeast count so I don't stress them too much.

 
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Old 01-27-2013, 12:26 PM   #8

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Originally Posted by Zippox
I'm probably now obligated to purchase an Erlenmeyer flask and some DME now I assume. Probably can't just pitch the liquid yeast straight in, right? Seeing as this is nearly a lager, I'll probably need a higher yeast count so I don't stress them too much.
DME, yes. Erlenmeyer, not necessarily. I use a growler to build my starters. My brother used to use a big glass jar he had laying around the house...so you might have something already you can use. Take a look at mrmalty.com for a good yeast calculator to figure out how big a starter to make.
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Old 01-27-2013, 01:32 PM   #9
atreid
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I'd be surprised you can maintain alt bier fermentation temperature using only a tub with ice, especially during active fermentation... but you can try...! ;-) I suggest rotating those frozen bottles 2-3 times a day, at least!

This is one style I want to wait until I finish buulding my fermentation chamber...

Instead of an erlenmeyer, I paid 8$ at a "dollar" shop for an 8L jar. Don't put an airlock for starters, just cover the top with aluminum foil. Yeast grow a lot better with oxygen. When you're finished, toss it in the fridge, let it sediment, throw away the beer on the top and only pitch the yeast.... (you can leave enough beer to let you swirl back the yeast in suspension for pitching, or add some fresh wort). (I say "beer" but it's not... Oxygenated propagation is not Fermentation, so there wouldn't be much alcool in there, only used up wort with off flavors)...

 
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Old 01-28-2013, 01:16 AM   #10
Zippox
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I like the idea of a glass jug. Midwest sells one for like 6 bucks, will probably just do that. Thanks all for the replies



 
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