When to brew an Oktoberfest?

We plan on doing our first lager as an Oktoberfest.

Being our first, when should we brew it so its ready in time for…well…October?

I was thinking to brew in mid May. Primary for 4 weeks then lager until September and bottle condition for a month.

If you want to be a traditionalist a octoberfest or also called marzan which means march is brewed in march and then lagered till september (octoberfest). But to be more practical you could just brew it in the summer give it 4-6 weeks lagering time and it would taste fine.

I did not know that! Not gonna make the March deadline. Perhaps we will brew a Mayzan instead.

I agree that it does not need to be brewed in march necessarily -seems early to me. But, I don’t think 4-6 weeks is enough lagering time either. In my experience, I would say that 12-16 weeks from brewday are when most of my lagers seem to be their best. 3-4 weeks fermentation. 8-12 weeks lagering (In the keg and I force carbonate.)

Lagers are fine with a 4-6 week lager time. longer is better but it will still taste good. The higher the SG of the beer the longer lagering should be. Marzans are usually under 6% alc so 4-6 weeks should be ok.

I’m sure it will be AMAYZAN!

I’m sure it will be AMAYZAN![/quote]

This made me spit coffee out onto my keyboard…thanks for that! :smiley:

Brewing it now would be best…6 weeks of lagering gives a nice result, but 6 months gives a markedly better result.

The main problem is resisting the urge to constantly taste it along the way to check progress…and winding up with a quart and a half of beer come September. :mrgreen:

Thanks all. Perhaps we will brew it in April then instead.

I brew a pilsner in march, then use the yeast from that for the Oktoberfest…so april-may timeframe. Really you can brew it whenever you want…but march would be tradition.

Funny, Bud’s born on date says “freshest within 110 days.” :slight_smile:

And while we are being traditionalist, you better have it ready for the end of September as Oktoberfest is held at the end of September through the first weekend of October.

FWIW, I always brew my Oktoberfest in March and lager it away. You want to talk a bout a crystal clear beer!

Silly me- I brew my Oktoberfests in the late Fall- early Winter. Of course that’s because I rely on ambient temperatures to ferment in the lager range and lager in the 35-40* range. So, I just started drinking a ‘Novemberfest’ that I started back in November. It’s a little hoppy though, so I think I’ll leave it until June.