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Old 08-16-2007, 06:10 PM   #1
briandickens
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Default Another fruit beer fermentation question

This weekend the wife and I are going to be brewing what is destined to be a strawberry wheat. This is her first brew ever and my first in a few years (though I've assisted a few in that time). What I seem to forget is how to know how long to leave the beer in fermentation. I think I used to do it systematically. Like, 7 days in primary, 10 in secondary, no matter what. Is that the best way? I plan on adding the strawberries to the secondary. Should I rack off that into a third carboy for a few days or just move right to the keg? How long in each fermenter? Help!



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Old 08-16-2007, 06:14 PM   #2
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The best way to tell if it's done is to use your hydrometer, but you can just wait until it stops bubbling. I'd say no less than 7 days and leave it until there is little activity (one bubble per 20 secs)

For fruit, I rack the beer onto it in the secondary. I leave it for about 10 days and move it to a tertiary cleaning tank for another week.



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Old 08-16-2007, 06:54 PM   #3
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I thought I read somewhere not to leave the beer on fruit for any longer than 7 days. If you want additional flavoring rack to a tertiary and add fruit to it.

But you should always rack to another carboy without fruit to clarify the beer and get some of that sediment to fall.

I just read the fruit section in Papazians JOHB3. Not much in the line of how long to ferment. Just don't boil the fruit as it will "set the pectin" in the fruit which leads to unfermentables and a fair amount of haze in the beer.

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Old 08-16-2007, 07:25 PM   #4
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I racked my Cream Ale onto Peaches for 4 days, I'm drinking it now and while it's very good I could've left it on there for a few more days. There isn't much of the peach flavor coming through. And yes, rack into a 3rd to clarify it.

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Old 08-16-2007, 07:28 PM   #5
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Awesome. Thanks for the advice. I'll probably have it on the strawberries for at least a week. Guess after a week I'll sample and see how it tastes.

I really can't wait to get brewing again...

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Old 08-16-2007, 07:29 PM   #6
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Don't go completely by how it tastes after the fruit. Mine had a much stronger peach smell/taste while I was racking into the 3rd carboy, it will mellow with age.

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Old 08-16-2007, 10:16 PM   #7
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I made a cherry vanilla porter a couple of months ago. I used two cans of Oregon fruit puree and left the beer on the fruit for a month, it turned out amazing. It all depends on how much flavor you want, you can probably leave you beer on the fruit for a week.

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Old 08-17-2007, 01:54 PM   #8
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I have a strawberry hefe kegged and drinking right now. It's "OK" but not great, I wont do it again.
The strawberries give it a really sweat/tangy and creamy taste and feel. My wife and dad both like it, as for me, I would rather drink something else.

By the way, I let it ferment for 7 days, racked to 6#s of berries, let sit for 7 days, kegged, chilled for a week and then carbed. The longer it sits the more tang I'm getting.

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Old 08-17-2007, 09:53 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lonek
I racked my Cream Ale onto Peaches for 4 days, I'm drinking it now and while it's very good I could've left it on there for a few more days. There isn't much of the peach flavor coming through. And yes, rack into a 3rd to clarify it.

I did the same thing but left the beer on the fruit for a week and still not much of the peach flavor came through. I think peaches just have a weak flavor that doesn't transfer well. Next time I'll up the amount of fruit I add.


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