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Cold crash question - Kolsch

Hi,

I am in the process of making a Kolsch. I have brewed it some 3 weeks ago and I have transferred to secondary 1 week ago. The beer is already quite clear, but I was wondering whether putting it in the fridge for another week would help making it clearer.

If you cold crash for a week or so, do you need to add new yeast before bottling? Or is there enough yeast present in the now clear beer and is it active enough to carbonate the bottles?

Trying to make the clearest possible Kolsch :slight_smile:
Thanks for the help!

Pete

typically there is enough yeast still suspended to carbonate. I actually haven’t even heard of a case where there wasn’t.

However, it will not hurt or cause bottle bombs (which is a function of sugar still in the beer) if you add some (1/2 pack of s-05, or about a half cup of slurry) and don’t need it. You might just have a tad more sediment at the bottom of your bottles.

I would cold crash and add gelatin if you want it really clear. Google “northern brewer gelatin grandmother” for a thread on this forum as to how to add it. Its a bit different than the conventional wisdom as to how to prepare gelatin, but I’ve had great results with it.

If you used White Labs Kolsch yeast, it doesn’t matter what you do – the yeast will settle out at any temperature.

If you used Wyeast, it also doesn’t matter what you do – the yeast will NOT settle out at any temperature. And in that case, you might want to add some gelatin.

But you won’t need gelatin if you used White Labs Kolsch yeast.

If you used some other kind of yeast… I still don’t think temperature matters that much. I think the cold-crash thing is overblown and doesn’t really matter all that much. Yeast will settle out at room temperature, given an extra week or two in the fermenter. Cold crashing might do it a little faster, but, does it really matter?? You decide.

I’ve had beers at 36f for three months that still had plenty of yeast left to carb.

Thanks for the quick and very useful replies :slight_smile: Much appreciated!

I’ve used s-05 for the brew for what it’s worth, don’t have any left so I’ll try to see (curious) whether the cold crashing helps and then bottle. If it does not work (any better) than I’ll know I can skip next time.

I did buy some whirlfloc in my next order to see whether that helps. I like my beer clear :slight_smile:

Pete

[quote=“pete_brewer”]Thanks for the quick and very useful replies :slight_smile: Much appreciated!

I’ve used s-05 for the brew for what it’s worth, don’t have any left so I’ll try to see (curious) whether the cold crashing helps and then bottle. If it does not work (any better) than I’ll know I can skip next time.

I did buy some whirlfloc in my next order to see whether that helps. I like my beer clear :slight_smile:

Pete[/quote]

S-05 is pretty much the only yeast I ever use for ales. It does indeed take a while to settle out, and cold crashing helps speed it up for sure. Gelatin really helps it along if you want super clear beer. Even with using gelatin and letting it cold condition in the secondary for several weeks, I have never had a single carbonation issue, and have never had to add any additional yeast. Just leave your bottles at room temperature for a couple of weeks, and they will carb right up sir.

As far as whirlfloc goes, I use it in almost every brew I make. There is definitely a huge difference in the cold break you get in the boiling kettle with whirlfloc. You just have to make sure you whirlpool your wort after it’s cooled down. I just use a spoon to get it swirling around rapidly, and let it sit with the lid on for 20 minutes. Then I siphon the wort into my carboy from the side of the kettle, as the whirpooling leaves all the cold break material and hop remnants in the center of the boiling kettle in a cone looking pile.

In the few batches I’ve brewed without whirlfloc, it most definitely took a lot longer to clear up my beer, and required gelatin to get it completely clear.

[quote=“dmtaylo2”]If you used White Labs Kolsch yeast, it doesn’t matter what you do – the yeast will settle out at any temperature.

If you used Wyeast, it also doesn’t matter what you do – the yeast will NOT settle out at any temperature. And in that case, you might want to add some gelatin.

But you won’t need gelatin if you used White Labs Kolsch yeast.
[/quote]

Good to know, when (if) I brew a kolsch I’ll go for the White Labs. :cheers:

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