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Old 02-01-2006, 06:11 PM   #1
Beerdoc
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Default Bottle conditioning lagers

How long before the yeast will die or become dormant if I'm lagering (first time obviously)? I don't have a kegging system and I want to bottle the batch of lager. I've heard that after a certain time, if you add the corn sugar, and bottle as with a nonlagered ale, it won't carbonate. Any thoughts on this?


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Old 02-02-2006, 12:12 AM   #2
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OK, I'm sure the more senior members will reply soon...but here's a Junior to Junior reply.

I'll assume that you're using a lager yeast and will be fermenting at cooler temps (say a basement around 50-55 degrees or so)...Cooler temps cause fermentation to go slower so count on 3-4 weeks. With 1-2 weeks primary, then 2 weeks secondary and then bottle as usual. If everybody behaves you should have enough yeast for the priming sugar to get carbonation going in the bottles (another 2 weeks).

I'm brewing a German lager this weekend and this will be my basic plan over its life.


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Old 02-02-2006, 12:21 AM   #3
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Thanks, Pete,

I've heard that lagering for longer times (6-8 weeks) is better? If I were to wait, say 4 weeks, do you think I'd still be ok?
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Old 02-02-2006, 12:30 AM   #4
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Is it a true lager with lagering yeast or is it lager with an ale yeast? That will make the difference.
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Old 02-02-2006, 12:36 AM   #5
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Default Lagering

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beerdoc
How long before the yeast will die or become dormant if I'm lagering (first time obviously)? I don't have a kegging system and I want to bottle the batch of lager. I've heard that after a certain time, if you add the corn sugar, and bottle as with a nonlagered ale, it won't carbonate. Any thoughts on this?

Hi I'm a relative newbie also but do to natural conditions in my house I've lagered (with lager yeast) on 8 out of 10 of my brews. My fermenting room is about 50 F and it took me between 4 and 6 weeks to get to bottling level. ABout After about half of those were fruited brews too. a month in the bottle and it's great!
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Old 02-02-2006, 10:39 AM   #6
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There is a difference between lagering and bottle conditioning. Once the beer has been lagered for however long your patience will allow, then it’s no longer necessary to keep it at low temps. Feel free to bottle condition between 65 and 75°F for 2-3 weeks.

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Old 02-02-2006, 02:43 PM   #7
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I'd say bottle and carbonate at 50F to 55F. There is no need to get the yeast any warmer than this since it works perfectly well at this temperature. Carbonation should be done after 2 weeks. Then you should lower the temerature gradually (over a few days) to 32F - 38F. At this temperature the beer will be "lagered" . Because of the low temperatures, and if temperature shocks are avoided, the yeast should not autolyse over the time of lagering.

also check out this thread:
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthre...0370#post50370

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Old 02-03-2006, 03:38 AM   #8
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Let me get this straight because I think I have it all wrong. For this upcoming lager, I should ferment at cool temps (50-ish) then rack to secondary. Does the lagering occur AFTER bottle conditioning? Assuming it does, at what temp should the secondary stay and for how long before bottling?

Thanks for your patience.
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Old 02-03-2006, 03:39 AM   #9
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And to answer Passload's question, it is a lager with lager yeast.
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Old 02-03-2006, 10:45 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beerdoc
Let me get this straight because I think I have it all wrong. For this upcoming lager, I should ferment at cool temps (50-ish) then rack to secondary. Does the lagering occur AFTER bottle conditioning? Assuming it does, at what temp should the secondary stay and for how long before bottling?

Thanks for your patience.
Lagering is after primary fermentation is complete. See this chapter in How To Brew.

Good luck,
Wild


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