first pilsner - tastes more like saison

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by steev, May 8, 2013.

  1. steev

    steev New Member

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    I brewed my first batch of czech pilsner recently, using WLP802 yeast, fermented at about 53ºF. Maybe I'm jumping the gun and this will go away, but an early taste (1 1/2 weeks after bottling) has an unexpected rich mouthfeel and spicy taste that's more like a saison. Does it just need to be lagered longer, or is this an indication of something that went wrong? It's not a bad flavor, just not the clean crispness I was expecting. This was an all-grain recipe. my mash target temp was right on at 154, everything went according to plan. the only unusual thing about the recipe was that I used pale 2-row rather than pilsner malt. Any ideas? thanks!
     
  2. LarryBrewer

    LarryBrewer Active Member

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    Probably just green beer. Lagers peak way after ales do, so maybe give it 3 more months??

    Spicy character could be from the hops. Did you use Saaz or something else?
     
  3. steev

    steev New Member

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    I used Saaz and Hersbrucker. Yeah that's a good explanation. but 3 months? really?!
     
  4. LarryBrewer

    LarryBrewer Active Member

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    Sadly I'm not joking... lagers improve over time. I just tasted one of my lagers the other day. It has been about 4 months since I first brewed it. It has noticeably improved since the tasting note I recorded when it was just 2 months old. I bet around the 6 month mark it will peak. It is drinkable now, but I'm holding out a little longer.

    I have always kegged my lagers, and kept them around 35F in the keezer. Not sure what the implications for a bottled lager are.

    To simplify life I am now racking to the keg, and basically doing the secondary and largering phase in the keg. This is working out great, with very little sediment coming out on the first pour. I used to rack, then lager in a carboy for 4-6 weeks, but that isn't worth it to me anymore.

    Tettnanger gives a spicy character, wanted to rule that out. Not sure about Hersbrucker.
     
  5. TheZel66

    TheZel66 Member

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    I've heard you need to "warm up" the beer to do a diacityl (sp?) rest in the 60's before you lager. Did you do that?
     
  6. LarryBrewer

    LarryBrewer Active Member

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    Yep on lagers I do a diacetyl rest every time!

    It goes like this:
    Primary fermentation for 3 weeks, then raise to 60-65F for 2-3 days (diacetyl rest), then cold crash down to 34F for a day, then rack to serving keg. I used to rack to carboy and 'lager' for 4-6 weeks, but now I just rack to the serving keg and lager in the serving keg which skips an extra racking. My keezer is pretty cold anyway. Beer turns out crystal clear!
     
  7. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    I do my diacetyl rest when I'm getting three bubbles per minute from the airlock or blowoff tube. Works well for me!
     
  8. Bishop on the Moor

    Bishop on the Moor New Member

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    I've currently got a Pilsner lagering. After the primary fermentation period of 2 weeks, the Pils had reached its FG and I racked to a secondary where it's sitting at just above freezing right now. It's been in there for 3 weeks, I'm planning on letting it sit there for another 3 weeks before it's either kegged or bottled. I usually don't really start drinking my product until 1 month in the bottles, but it sounds like I should wait a little longer with the Pilsner.

    It is my first Pilsner. I didn't do a diacetyl rest. Didn't know about it. I do now. The taste during racking was great. No diacetyl flavours and it was pretty clean tasing. I'm pretty excited about it. But by my calculations I won''t be drinking it until late summer. Damn.

    thoughts?
     
  9. LarryBrewer

    LarryBrewer Active Member

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    You can keg now if you want. I go from primary straight to the serving keg and lager it there. If you didn't taste diacetyl, then you probably don't have anything to worry about.
     
  10. Bishop on the Moor

    Bishop on the Moor New Member

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    Good good, no diacetyls then. I'll play it safe next time and do a rest.
    If I were to keg it now and lager it in there, should I be filling the keg with CO2 at that point?

    thanks Larry
     
  11. LarryBrewer

    LarryBrewer Active Member

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    Yes. What I do is rack to the keg and hook it up to the CO2 so it is being carbonated during the largering phase.

    After filling the keg, I hook up the CO2 and purge the head space about 5-10 times to get any air out of there. I have one regulator feeding 5 kegs. The regulator is outside the keezer and is set to 9.5 psi. The Keezer is set to 35F, which gives ~2.5 Volumes of CO2. This setup is giving me great pours with a 4ft picnic tap, a nice lacy head about an inch tall, and plenty of bubbles to look at in the beer.
     

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