I learned the other day (watching Ask This Old House) that the main difference between a lager and an ale is just the type of yeast that’s used. Lager yeast likes it cold, and takes longer to ferment, and sinks to the bottom; ale yeast likes it warmer, ferments more quickly, and rises to the top. So even though people pooh-pooh at lager for being crappy watery American beer, it’s actually the harder one to make.
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