Fermenting or Not - Advice Please

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Osensei

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Hi guys,
New to this forum. Canadian ex-pat living in Japan, where houses are not as insulated as in Canada.
Here we go:
Started an IPA Bitter (LME+DME Kit with extra mash and hops) with 1 pack of dry lager yeast. (I guess this would make it a bitter lager in the end).
After 30 min of cooling off wort as I usually do, thinking it was cool enough, poured it in the fermenter, added about 15oC water to 22L, gave it a good whisk, took OG reading, and pitched rehydrated yeast. Put the lid and airlock on the bucket, wrapped a blanket around to cut the light, set it up in the usual spot which is in a part of our house where the temp sits between 5-12oC at this time of year, and went about my evening.
Before going to bed, I checked on it and noticed that the stick-on thermometer was reading 28oC!! So I unwrapped the blanket and let it sit there overnight, and wrapped it up again for the light the next morning, at which point it was sitting at 25oC. That evening, yesterday, noticed that the foam on top of the brew did happen at some point during the day, but had stopped, all still sitting at 25oC.
Now, I'm really wondering what to do with this. Try to lower the temperature? Pitch another pack of yeast? Leave it as-is? Will it be fine?
Would love suggestions for you all.
 
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How much foam? If it was anything like a krausen, you probably had a fast fermentation. At those temps it's quite possible. Check the gravity and report back. If only a thin foam, you probably murdered or numbed your yeasties and should repitch.

If those are the temps you have to work with, stick with ale yeasts, and only certain ones of those. See what you have available locally and then read the packages or go to the manufacturers' websites for recommended temperatures.

This batch may well turn out as eau de paint thinner, but good luck.

Priorities in brewing: (1) sanitation, (2) temperature control, (3) everything else.

If you brewed lagers in your R50 house in Churchill, Whitehorse, Resolute or wherever it was, what were your yeasts and temps?
 

YAPN

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Gravity readings will tell you how much fermentation has occurred.

I'm a big fan of the taste test, if the taste is reasonable then proceed with crossed fingers.

Most dry yeasts do not need to be rehydrated, just sprinkle it on top.
 

Osensei

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How much foam? If it was anything like a krausen, you probably had a fast fermentation. At those temps it's quite possible. Check the gravity and report back. If only a thin foam, you probably murdered or numbed your yeasties and should repitch.

If those are the temps you have to work with, stick with ale yeasts, and only certain ones of those. See what you have available locally and then read the packages or go to the manufacturers' websites for recommended temperatures.

This batch may well turn out as eau de paint thinner, but good luck.

Priorities in brewing: (1) sanitation, (2) temperature control, (3) everything else.

If you brewed lagers in your R50 house in Churchill, Whitehorse, Resolute or wherever it was, what were your yeasts and temps?
Just took a reading and we're sitting at 1.020 on second day. So I say we're fermenting.
BTW, I usually brew lagers in winter here. As I said, this area in my house sits between 5-12oC in winter which is perfect for lager. Only this time, I wasn't paying attention to the wort temperature and thought it had cooled down enough. And I think the bucket was not losing heat because of the blanket I covered it with to keep the light out. I just changed it and put it somewhere dark, same temperature, and took the blanket off.
 

Osensei

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Gravity readings will tell you how much fermentation has occurred.

I'm a big fan of the taste test, if the taste is reasonable then proceed with crossed fingers.

Most dry yeasts do not need to be rehydrated, just sprinkle it on top.
Went from OG of 1.041 to 1.020 in two days. So I think it's fermenting.
 
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. As I said, this area in my house sits between 5-12oC in winter which is perfect for lager.
[/QUOTE]
The temps are good, the variation not so much, but that's what the blankets are for. I get it now.

As I've noted here before, a good feature of older houses in Canada and the northern US is basements
 

Osensei

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Little update to this for those interested:

The gravity stayed at 1.020 for another two weeks, so I racked and repitched and it went down to 1.008 after an extra two weeks. Bottled and conditioned for 2 weeks and it's tasting really good with a good head.

Cheers
 

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