Coopers european lager just started

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Wayno15

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Hi all,

I just put a coopers european lager on today, I did it as per instructions with 1kg of BE2, but only brewed it to 21l instead of the 23 recommended (I'd read it benefits from this). I pitched the packet of yeast at 15 degrees c, I've got the heat belt on it to bring it up to 16 degrees until fermentation starts then I will let it drop by itself down to 13 degrees.

Any thoughts on whether I'm about right?
 

terrym

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If you have used the single 7g packet of kit yeast you are on the limit in my view. If that is so I would raise the temperature to about 19*C to get a healthy yeast production underway (that what the first few hours are all about) and then when things are obviously underway slowly lower the temperature to 13*C. I found that 13*C was too low with this kit/yeast and had to raise it to 15-16*C if I remember correctly. Others had better luck it seems. And irrespective of what temperature you finally ferment at don't forget to raise the temperature to about 19/20*C for a couple of days or so when things are nearly done to carry out the diacetyl rest. Finally, a further crash cool to drop the yeast is preferable but not essential.
 

Wayno15

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I'll go turn the temperature up a bit now, cheers.

I had already planned on doing a diacetyl rest, unfortunately I can't crash the whole lot, so I'll just planning on bottling the whole lot in 3 weeks, store it for a few months in a fridge and hope for the best.
 

darrellm

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I've done that kit several times around 13/14C with a single packet of yeast, chugs along nicely but can take up to 3 weeks to fully ferment. Worth considering a dry hop of Saaz or Hallertau to give it a bit more flavour.
 

Wayno15

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Hi Darrell,

It is currently set to 13.5 degrees and bubbling every 15 seconds, so looking pretty good so far. It's been like that since Monday night so I'll draw off a sample to test the sg, I need to figure out how fast it's fermenting so I can get the diacetyl rest done at the right time.

I do fancy dry hopping, but I want to make this as per kit the first time so I have a baseline flavour. As soon as I free up the vessels I shall get a second batch on, and hop these. Do you just dry hop with pellets after primary?

I want to make several batches so that I have a fridge full of cold lager ready for summer.
 

Wayno15

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It's been bubbling away like a crazy thing at 13 - 13.5 degrees all week so I pulled off a sample and did a gravity test, I want to know how it's coming along so I can get a diacetyl rest in before fermentation ends. It's down to 1.020 so I think another 2 or 3 days and I will start to bring the temperature up slowly to 19 degrees for the rest.

I can't do a cold crash and lager the whole batch as I don't have a big fridge. I was planning on transferring it to a secondary after the diacetyl rest and leaving it in the cold garage (about 8 degrees c) for a few weeks, then bottling/priming at 20 degrees in my hot box, then sticking the bottles in the garage and beer fridge to condition for 3 months. Is it OK to go up and down with the temperature like this after primary has finished?
 

nige

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As I understand after your rest putting in garage at 8c is a cold crash and will clear quicker, it may not take so long 2wk may be then prime and keep back in 20c for 2wk and condition, sounds OK to me although I read conditioning is quicker about 12c and store in garage after, someone else may elaborate better if I'm wrong.
 

terrym

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@Wayno15
1. You can dry hop this lager just like any other beer. The trouble is the effects of a dry hop tend to wear off with time. My experience is that, after four months it's all but gone, and since this kit is better after leaving a few months thats most of the dry hop gone. So a better method, imo, it to make up a hop tea and add that to the beer before packaging. Saaz or Hallertau work with this kit, my preference was Hallertau although there wasn't much in it.
2. If you rack off to secondary and leave it in a cold place for as long as 8 weeks you may find that there is just not enough yeast left in suspension to carb up after packaging, so you may need to add new yeast, Personally I cannot see the objective of a long time in bulk secondary for this beer , why not just leave it somewhere cold for a few days to clear after its finished the primary, package, carb, then put in your fridge for as long as you can manage near to 12 weeks for conditioning.
3. Remember that this is 'only' a kit lager. It produces a decent but not exceptional beer in my view. So I suggest you wait and try your first batch before you commit to knocking out 'several batches so that I have a fridge full of cold lager ready for summer' to avoid any possible disappointment.
 

Wayno15

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Thanks for the advice. I think I will follow point number 2, I am away this weekend so I think I'll turn off the heat belt and let it sit at UK winter temperatures for a couple of days, then bottle and carb next week. Regarding the hop tea, I do fancy hopping something, but as this is my first batch I plan to use it as a control batch so to speak. If I can get some hops before I bottle I might hop tea half the batch during bottling
 

terrym

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Thanks for the advice. I think I will follow point number 2, I am away this weekend so I think I'll turn off the heat belt and let it sit at UK winter temperatures for a couple of days, then bottle and carb next week. Regarding the hop tea, I do fancy hopping something, but as this is my first batch I plan to use it as a control batch so to speak. If I can get some hops before I bottle I might hop tea half the batch during bottling
Be aware that fermenting beer does not necessarily fit to your programme, however inconvenient. Since you have been fermenting at low temperatures the primary will take longer than at say at 20*C. So unless you are fully satisfied the SG has bottomed out, I would leave it in the warm to finish off before you move to your cold place to drop the yeast before packaging. And your idea for a hop tea comparison is sound athumb..
 

nige

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I did boil some saaz if you read back but I do apreciate any help with this, I think it's over my head a bit now.
 
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always look to a good lager yeast I use saf S-23 this is a true bottom fermenting lager yeast & gives great results. Mangrove Jacks do a Bohemian lager yeast which is great too. Yeast is a massive part of the magic process of beer making & should never be underestimated.
 

nige

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Coopers kit comes with a true larger yeast as I'm aware of.
 
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nige

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Lol I wrote wrong yeast that's in my country wine recipe, I got mixed up with threads ha, did go over top of my coopers with a mangrove jack's it's in a different thread coopers euro larger review. Sorry
 

Wayno15

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I understand coopers euro is a true lager yeast. I got quite lucky with speedy fermentation, I was expecting 3 weeks, but at 13.5 degrees it was down to 1.010 after a week, so I turned it up to 18 for a few days for diacetyl rest. I'm away for a long weekend so I plan on leaving it now until Tuesday (that's 2 weeks in primary fv) then I'll cold crash is overnight which is currently about 4 degrees outside so maybe 8 in the garage, decant to a new bucket and batch prime it. I don't think I'll get to the homebrew shop until next weekend so I'll have to hop tea the next batch I make. I want to make a second batch while it's still cold enough to leave it outside to lager.
 

darrellm

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I understand coopers euro is a true lager yeast. I got quite lucky with speedy fermentation, I was expecting 3 weeks, but at 13.5 degrees it was down to 1.010 after a week, so I turned it up to 18 for a few days for diacetyl rest.
It is a true lager yeast, Surprised yours finished so quick, mine takes 3 weeks at that temp.

Should turn out great if you can wait the 12 weeks it takes to condition (yes it does take that long to come good, it'll be worth the wait).
 

Wayno15

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I know, i couldn't believe how fast it was going and how fast it finished up. The 12 weeks will be a real struggle, but i will do my best, and if I crack I'll make sure I leave several full the full amount of time.

I want to try to get another brew done while it's still early enough in winter for me to be able to lager them without the fridge
 
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nice plan. keep patient, the lagering process is well worth the wait & is essential for a decent pint.
 

Wayno15

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I have just bottled these, I managed to get to the brew shop before voting so picked up a bag of saaz hops. I made a hop tea with 8g of hops and added this to the last 10 litres, so I now have 10 litres as per instructions and 10 litres mildly hopped (I hope).

What temperature should I carbonate this kit, I primary fermented at 13.5c, but read to carb them at 18c, I was worried so currently have it set to 16c
 

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