unfamiliar with process, advice needed
I just brewed the AHA Chiswick Bitter Big Brew recipe and it calls for dry hopping three separate times.
First dry hop (.5oz East kent) goes in 3 or 4 days after it's brewed, right into the primary. Second dry hop is 7 to 10 days and after racking to secondary. It sits there for three weeks and then goes into the keg where it gets the last dry hop.
I've come to believe in staying in primary for three weeks or longer and not using a secondary, but with this dry hop schedule, should i go ahead and use a secondary or would i still be able to leave it in primary for the full time?
Next, when you dry hop, do you just threw the pellets right in or do people prefer to use a bag? I've heard leaving dry hops too long can impart a veggie-like flavor, would i need to remove the hops from each previous dry hop if i wanted to keep it all in the primary for the entire time?
Finally, I have no experience with dry hopping in the keg and have read the stories about hops clogging the dip tube. I also haven't come up with a method that would work for me to accomplish this. Would it be better to suck it up and dry hop the keg or go longer in the fermenter and do my third hop addition there?
I'd appreciate any help here.
I prefer to dry hop in a bag for easy removal. I have never heard of three seperate dry hopping but if that is the recipe I would use bags in each case and remove used hops with new hop addition. Also, I use a large s.s. tea ball in the keg. It hangs by a chain from the underside of the lid. I remove this dry hop addition when the flavor/aroma is achieved (4-6 days). I have heard of brewers dry hopping in the keg by hanging the hop bag using dental floss draped out and held in place by the lid. Also, use some type of weight in the bag (s.s.bolt) to cause the bag to drop. The hops tend to float on the surface.
If you want to follow the hopping schedule specified I would go ahead an transfer to a secondary according to schedule. I also usually use a primary only fermentation schedule but I often secondary to facilitate dry hopping.
Also I prefer to dry hop with loose hops instead of in a bag. Place a mesh bag over the end of the racking cane and keep the bottom of the cane off of the bottom of the fermenter until it is nearly empty. I find pellet hops easier to dry hop with than whole hops as the material will nearly all settle in the bottom of the fermenter.
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