Bavarian Pilsner with Kölsch yeast..

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RustyV8

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Morning all....
As the title says, i'm currently brewing a Bavarian Pilsner - using one of the 'Customise your Coopers Can' recipes from Aussiehomebrewing. Those recipes dont give any recomendation on the yeast to use so I assume they expect you to use the one that comes with the can. So me being a smartass decided to use Wyeast Kölsch 2565 instead... just to liven things up :-) So far its bubbling away nicely since Saturday brewday, albeit with a large green cake forming on the top (green due to the hops)... not worried about that, assume that will just do its thing over time and drop down in cold crash.

What I hadn't anticipated however was the need to larger before bottling due to this yeast - there seems to be a lot of debate online if thats needed or not. Should have done more research - in hindsight this probably wasn't an appropriate yeast for Pilsner but no point crying over spilled beer - i'm still learning :-)

So what I'm thinking of doing is the following - does this seem like a good approach to you guys?

First Ferm: 7days at 14-16degrees then 7days upped to 20degrees (for diacetyl rest, but maybe not needed as Wyeast states it produces no or low detectable levels of diacetyl?)
Cold crash for 48hrs to help drop the aforementioned yeast cake
Larger for 2 weeks at 10deg (should it be colder??)
Prime/bottle for 2nd fermentation - 2 weeks (What temp? back to the 16/20 mark again or colder?)
Cold condition minimum 2 weeks at 10 deg or so

All help appreciated guys...
 

Trapdoor

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I think if you use a Kolsch yeast you end up making a Kolsch and not a lager. Kolsch is very close to a lager like profile, in fact I think it's the closest profile of any top fermenting yeast but it still doesnt quite taste the same as a bottom fermenting lager.

Its maybe my favourite german beer style. Love kolsch.

Think your plan looks reasonable, it will work for sure but I dont think you need to necessarily leave it that long at warm temps. It cleans up on its own in my experience - it's not like a lager yeast where diacetyl is problematic.
 

RustyV8

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Thanks Trapdoor. Hoping it still comes out Pilsner-ish .... I’m guessing the Saas hope will do their trick 😂

when you say it doesn’t need that long at warm temp, do you mean the 7days at 20 deg in 1st Ferm?
 

Trapdoor

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Yeah.
After 7 days at 14-16 degrees I would be surprised if you hadnt reached final gravity by then. I wouldnt bother raising the temperature at all after final gravity, but if you want to you could increase to 20degrees. Just make sure not to raise the temp by more than 1.5C every 24 hours. So assuming you went from 16C up to 20C that would take about 3 days to achieve. (I dont think its necessary for Kolsch though.)
 

RustyV8

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Aha! Good you pointed that out as I didn’t know that about the gradual temp increase - why is that?

1.5 is quite accurate. I can only increase the storeroom temperature to increase the FV temperature. So I can’t guarantee I’d be able to be that precise. Maybe I should just leave it at a solid 16 for the full 14days then and then crash her.
 

RichardM

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Using the Kolsch yeast isn't what means you need to lager the brew. Pilsner is a lager and needs lagering.
 

RustyV8

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Ummm... is it too late to claim I just had a brain fart?? 😂
Yeah, now that you say it it’s pretty darn obvious I guess that it’s not dictated by the yeast.

I think what threw me off is that the Coopers lager used as the base doesn’t require lagering (as per instructions at least)... so it didn’t occur to me.. don’t know why 🤦🏻‍♂️
 

RichardM

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Ummm... is it too late to claim I just had a brain fart?? 😂
Yeah, now that you say it it’s pretty darn obvious I guess that it’s not dictated by the yeast.

I think what threw me off is that the Coopers lager used as the base doesn’t require lagering (as per instructions at least)... so it didn’t occur to me.. don’t know why 🤦🏻‍♂️
I've always wondered why kit lager instructions don't tell you to lager the beer.
 

RustyV8

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Yeah.
After 7 days at 14-16 degrees I would be surprised if you hadnt reached final gravity by then. I wouldnt bother raising the temperature at all after final gravity, but if you want to you could increase to 20degrees. Just make sure not to raise the temp by more than 1.5C every 24 hours. So assuming you went from 16C up to 20C that would take about 3 days to achieve. (I dont think its necessary for Kolsch though.)
so does the same temperature change best practices apply to reducing temperature also? Does that not contradict cold crash ? Would I be better gradually lower to lagering temp of around 2deg instead and leave it there for 2 weeks?
 

Trapdoor

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Generally by the point you cold crash most of the yeast has finished doing it's job. It's converted as much of the sugar to alcohol as it wants to. Then it tends to slowly drop out of suspension over time.
You can cold crash at this point but because the yeast isn't doing anything it shouldn't produce off flavours.

It's a good question though about hypothetically cold crashing during high krausen. I would imagine the large temperature change would stress the yeast, but maybe it wouldn't produce a lot of off flavours because the yeast go into hibernation so rapidly?
 

RustyV8

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Good point Trapdoor. I have zero experience with Kölsch yeast but from what i have read about it, a large cake can remain (and even get hard) after fermentation has ended. So crashing that much of a cake back into the FV might not be a good idea as you say. Perhaps I should scoop it off before crashing. Anyway, tomorow is only day 7. Ill take a reading anyway then, and give is some more days to see if the krausen starts to reduce. For teh moment, it still seems to be active..
I'm probably over-analysying this :-)
 

Trapdoor

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Yeah for sure dont worry too much about it. I cold crash in the primary FV all teh time and never have any problems with it.
 

RustyV8

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So the cold crash was done last weekend and the cake has completely disappeared and it’s visably much clearer 👍 Lagering now in the storeroom at 6deg.

I would like to try fining using gelatin - first time at this. Is it ok to do that is the primary FV also? (I only have one FV) Does it need to be mixed in and will that risk disturbing the trub, or is it just poured in and it does it’s thing with no mixing?
 

RustyV8

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So being St. Patrik’s day I had to crack one of my Pilsner today - sporting a green leather apron in honor of the day!! 😁 Quite happy with how this turned out, the cold crash and gelatin fining experiment worked really well!
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0D988C07-E5BF-4BA0-890B-9BE49A974D11.jpeg
 

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