I racked the pilsner that Joe & I brewed to the lagering vessel tonight. To avoid oxidization, I filled the carboy with CO2 first, then pushed the beer from secondary to the lagering carboy using CO2 as well. Seemed to work alright, though it’s sad to see only 4 gallons of the initial 5 make it this far. Maybe if I had dry hopped it in primary instead of secondary, we’d have both a clearer beer and a tad more available for labor day.

So I guess the lesson I learned from this batch was not to dry hop a lager with loose leaf hops. Pellets would have at least settled out.

Luckily, the beer tasted nice and had a nice color, though the turbidity was a little high. Hopefully a month or so lagering will solve some of that.

On the home front, we’ll be moving to NoPo to a place that has both an ideal garage and an ideal basement for brewing. Just have to choose. Given the lack of good pubs in the area, I may need to brew more.

5 Responses to “Lagering”

  • I use dry hop hops for lagering all the time during the lagering step, but then again I hate pellets. Seems to work well though. You should lager it for more than 1 month if you want that super crisp non-turbid beer. And CO2 in secondary, thats a great idea!

  • Can I ask why you blame the loss of volume on whole leaf dry-hopping? We’re adjusting our dry-hopping techniques. Currently using bags of loose leaf, but are soon going to try just dumping them in. Some hop expert said that was the best way… I forget his name.

  • I used 2 ounces of loose hops and they formed a 2-3 inch cap on the beer, but most of the cap was within the beer. I could have gotten more beer off, but I started to get leaf bits in the racking cane, which slowed down the process quite a bit – even when pushing the beer with CO2.

    I’ve had good luck dry hopping with loose hops in the past – especially when using a poly-bucket for primary, because cleaning up the trub and spent hops is a cinch.

  • As a follow-up, we just bottled from our loose-leaf batch. It was a bitch. Not using a bag for the hops severely lowered our yield. Not sure if we’ll do it again. We’ll see how this IPA turns out first, I guess.

  • When we drop hop we always uswe a bag. We boil the bag with four or five large stainless steel ball bearings in the bag. We add the dry hops to bag, add the bag to the secondary. The ball bearings keep the bap of hops on the bottom of the secondary. We experince very little loose of product.

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