Lager yeast at ale temps

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by Imajin, Nov 10, 2013.

  1. Imajin

    Imajin New Member

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    I have been reading numerous posts about this..simply because I'm an ale brewer and have a free pack of lager yeast ..everyone complains of off flavors and this and that..hmm um..there wasn't much control years ago..I'm sure Budweiser didn't taste like piss and rice syrup solids and beechwood sawdust a hundred years ago..it probably was good..now that being said I'm going to make a split batch with my free brew ferm lager yeast and one with leftover yeast cake..yes trub and all..
     
  2. NTexBrewer

    NTexBrewer Member

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    My guess is that you can make a drinkable beer. It may not be to style. But that is the fun of home brewing. Braking rules. Yes way back when they may not have had fancy temperature control systems but they would do other ingenious things like use shallow open fermenters that allowed the heat to dissipate a lot faster and keep temperatures lower.

    I know Anchor still uses open shallow vats for there steam lager. Of course the vats are now in a temperature control sterile room.

    One thing you can do is cool your wort to very low temperatures and make a big yeast starter. This will lesson any off flavors.
     
  3. chessking

    chessking New Member

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    Lager yeast at Ale temperatures will produce a fine beer. I've done it many times. The only thing is that it wont be a lager. The yeast will work differently at the warmer temperatures and make a different beer. Its really not "off flavors", but the natural esters and flavors that the yeast produce at that temperature. The beer wont have the crisp clean fermentation characteristics of a lager, but be more ale like. Fine beer though. The yeast will work as hard at Ale temps as an Ale yeast so you would use the same pitch rate you would use for an Ale. A larger pitch will only reduce flavors brought on by stressed yeast. However, as your fermentation temperature goes down, your pitch rate should increase.

    Ale yeast at Lager temperatures is a different story.

    +1 on yeast cake dumping.
     
  4. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    If you want lager-like at ale temps, try Koelsch or California Common yeast. Again, not a lager but not bad.
     
  5. LarryBrewer

    LarryBrewer Active Member

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    It will be very estery and fruity, probably with weird flavors. Lager yeast has been honed over centuries to perform well at cooler temperatures. Fermenting lager yeast hot would be an experiment at best, but one that history has pounded into the ground as something not to do.

    Case in point, I started a diacetyl rest a little too early on an American Lager that it did, and there is a noticeable clove flavor which detracts from the beer.

    Keep the lager yeast cool, or save yourself the trouble and use a Belgian yeast if you want to ferment hot and get good results.
     
  6. Tom McLean

    Tom McLean New Member

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    One hundered years ago Budwizer was brewed, in the winter, at 40 or 45 F. You don't get the same results at 70 F. Yeast has a mind of its own. Your regular wort brewed at a low larger temp of 40 to 50 F with the lager yeast would be clean and interesting.

    Tom McLean
    On the Wet Coast'
    After The Storm
     
  7. TheZel66

    TheZel66 Member

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    When Budweiser started, they brewed in the caves beneath the headquarters. Many breweries in the 19th century started that way. constant cool temps.
     

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