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Old 07-09-2008, 06:03 PM   #1
Bobby_M
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Default Barleywine storage/serving.

I'm a complete noob when it comes to big beers. Prior to this barleywine, my biggest had a 1.068 OG. I haven't bottled in a long time though I do have enough bottles for this batch.

What do you do with your barleywine? I have room/faucets for 5 kegs but I'm not quite sure I want to dedicate a pouring position to a beer that will absolutely last me more than a year. On the other hand, it would allow pulling a 4oz sipper rather than potentially wasting some out of a 12oz bottle.

It went from 1.118 down to 1.025 in just over a week so I racked it to secondary on some bourbon soaked oak chips and suppose it will age there for at least 3 months before I make a decision. I'd like to hear how you treat your big beers.

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Old 07-09-2008, 06:06 PM   #2
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Thanks for bringing this up Bobby. I'm interested as well.

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Old 07-09-2008, 06:09 PM   #3
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BMBF. I personally don't want to take up a tap for 8%+ beers that I'm not going to drink very often. It's one of the few times where I'll actually bottle something.

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Old 07-09-2008, 06:11 PM   #4
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I made an imperial espresso stout around 10% ABV last year. I bottled in 12oz. bottles and made it available at my wedding for the few that would be interested. Everyone "liked" it, but I was slightly disappointed with it. Then two weeks ago, with only 2 bottles left tried it--completely different beer (1 year after bottling). Man I wish I had sat on those bottles for another 6 months before letting anyone try it (The wedding was 6 months after bottling). I've never kegged a big beer for the same reason you are concerned with: too long to occupy one of your kegs. I'd say--if you have the room, go for it! But it may take a while before its potential is unleashed.

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Old 07-09-2008, 06:20 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bobby_M View Post
I'm a complete noob when it comes to big beers. Prior to this barleywine, my biggest had a 1.068 OG. I haven't bottled in a long time though I do have enough bottles for this batch.

What do you do with your barleywine? I have room/faucets for 5 kegs but I'm not quite sure I want to dedicate a pouring position to a beer that will absolutely last me more than a year. On the other hand, it would allow pulling a 4oz sipper rather than potentially wasting some out of a 12oz bottle.

It went from 1.118 down to 1.025 in just over a week so I racked it to secondary on some bourbon soaked oak chips and suppose it will age there for at least 3 months before I make a decision. I'd like to hear how you treat your big beers.
Try to find some pony bottles...7.5 ozs. I believe Rolling Rock use to sell them in returnables. I scored some back in the 80's . I would always put the big beers in these. Since returning to brewing I haven't made anything that large. Don't know if my brain cells can handle them anymore Charlie
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Old 07-09-2008, 06:46 PM   #6
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I was just going to suggest ponies, but I was also going to ask if anybody has found any for sale. I haven't, and I'd like to for this very reason (I don't have a keg system). I also know they aren't available in some states.

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Old 07-09-2008, 06:47 PM   #7
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I'm leaning towards dedicating a keg. It's not really an issue of not having enough kegs but moreso only having the ability to cold-store and pour 5 (I know, cry me a frickin river right?). I have 4.5 gallons in secondary. This might be a perfect brew for my 3 gallon corny. I might be able to fit it on the hump in the kegger for a 6th position and just throw a picnic tap on it. The remaining can go into bottles that will be forgotten about for very long periods of time or for comps. I'd love to find some old nip bottles but they're rare.

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Old 07-09-2008, 08:11 PM   #8
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Check these out Bobby. Morebeer has some cool 6 oz bottles that would work well for a barleywine.6 oz bottles

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Old 07-09-2008, 08:25 PM   #9
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Bobby, what about keeping it in the keezer with the picnic tap like that extract Witbier? I know you have 5 faucets, but don't you have room for 6 kegs? Regarding barleywines, I personally let them mellow for quite some time. Then I drink them out of snifter-like glasses at about 55F...

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Old 07-09-2008, 08:30 PM   #10
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on my first barleywine i was concerned about natural carbonation due to the alcohol percentage. i just kegged it after secondary and force carbed then i bottled it. it aged in bottles for about 6 months. every bottle was carbed perfectly as well.

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