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Old 10-28-2010, 09:02 PM   #1
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Default Can beer ferment to quickly

Since I began making starters, my beers have shown visible fermentation in as little as 3 hours with very active fermentation lasting 48 hours. After around 72 hours ( in some cases) visible fermentation seems to drop off to almost nothing and final gravity is reached in 4 to 5 days. Although I leave my beers in primary for at least 21 days, can the finished product be compromised in some way leading to off flavors by fermentation starting to soon, being to vigorous and finishing to quickly.
I have made the same Pale Ale for some time and pitched swollen smack packs. They have always been good. The last one that I did using WLP001 and a starter on a stir plate started very quickly and finished in half the time but I can taste a slight green apple taste that was not present in previous batches.

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Old 10-28-2010, 09:28 PM   #2
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As long as your not over/under pitching, and you're keeping your temps consistantly in a good spot....then no.

The green apple flavor just means your beer needs a little more time. It will fade.

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Old 10-28-2010, 09:30 PM   #3
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according to garrett oliver a quick fermentation is better. i also believe this.

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Old 10-28-2010, 09:32 PM   #4
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Thanks, thats what I was hoping. It's been conditioning for three weeks and I chilled a bottle for 36 hours to sample. I'm sure after two full weeks in the cooler it will change. Fingers crossed!

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Old 10-28-2010, 09:37 PM   #5
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The only way I can see an issue with a super quick ferment is if the temperature gets out of control. That can happen if you pitch warm, and then the yeast start up right away and go crazy. The fermentation itself produces heat, and then the yeast go even more crazy, and produce more heat, etc. I've seen that happen when people talk about "explosive" fermentations, especially in the summer.

As long as you pitch at or slightly below fermentation temperature, and keep the temperature under control, a quicker fermentation is great!

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Old 10-28-2010, 09:38 PM   #6
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According to Mr. Malty, my 1250ml starter should yield the proper pitch. Usually run it on a plate for 48 hours, refridge and decant. I doubt that it's under but not sure about over pitch. I believe its about right for a 1.057 SG..
Temps are regulated and constant at 68F for 21 days.

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Old 10-28-2010, 09:41 PM   #7
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Time will tell, I'll check it in about two weeks and let you know. Thanks for the vote of confidence.

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Old 10-29-2010, 12:33 AM   #8
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You're fine. Ever since I started following yeast pitching guidelines and so forth I've had relatively quick fermentations. Even beers as high as 1.090 have finished up in five days time. I tend to leave them in the fermenter for another two to three weeks after finishing though.

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Old 10-29-2010, 01:52 AM   #9
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Starters and stir plates are relatively new to me as I have just pitched from the vial in the past. Have heard so much about the benefits of starters that I decided to take the plunge. My fermentations are a whole new animal and therefore started a new learning curve. Thanks for the reply and I am going to leave this go for about three weeks and see how it does.

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