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Old 04-13-2014, 05:16 PM   #1
amcclai7
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Default RIS what's the earliest I can bottle?

I brewed an RIS on march 9th. I have not switched it over to a secondary yet and don't plan to. My question is this. Should I go ahead and bottle and just let it age in the bottles for 6 months? or should I let it go for another month and then bottle. Regardless, I am not going to do a secondary.

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Old 04-13-2014, 05:57 PM   #2
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There's no hard and fast answer to your question - it all depends on how well your fermentation went.

Odds are that the calendar is on your side and you're ready to move it off the yeast.

I generally let my beers sit on the yeast until they've reached terminal gravity (check every day, same gravity for 3 days - done.), then let the beer sit on the yeast for another week or two, depending on how big the beer is, bigger beers sit longer. This is to allow the yeast to "clean up" fermentation byproducts like diacetyl. Another thing I like to do is ramp up the fermentation temperature when fermentation is about done or after it's done, which will help the yeast become more active and lead to a speedier / more complete yeast clean-up. I generally ferment ales around 66-68, and then ramp up to 72 later on after the bulk of fermentation activity is done.

For a large beer like that, I'd probably leave it on the yeast about 3-4 weeks after pitching assuming sufficient yeast was pitched and proper temperature was maintained. I would probably bulk age in another vessel, then bottle a month or two later.

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Old 04-13-2014, 06:12 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amcclai7 View Post
I brewed an RIS on march 9th. I have not switched it over to a secondary yet and don't plan to. My question is this. Should I go ahead and bottle and just let it age in the bottles for 6 months? or should I let it go for another month and then bottle. Regardless, I am not going to do a secondary.
Larger beers I will check after four weeks in the fermentor to see if they are ready for bottling. I'll go by taste and clarity.
Taste is sort of subjective because it is green beer. I'll try to get a sense of blending or if some part is overpowering. If I think one ingredient is overpowering I check again in one more week.
To check clarity, with dark beers, I put part of the hydrometer sample in a zip lock bag. Hydrometer test tube is usually to large in diameter to get good light through. If there are floating particles I'll check again in one more week.
Quite often it's four weeks after fermentation ends that I bottle.
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Old 04-13-2014, 11:09 PM   #4
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Thanks for the info! To be honest, I care nothing for clarity. I think a little bit a yeast in suspension adds mouthfeel and created a more harmonized beer. I will check the gravity and the taste very soon and see if its ready to bottle.

In any case I should probably wait several months before popping any bottles and maybe 6 months before I really start drinking them. Agreed?

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Old 04-13-2014, 11:18 PM   #5
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Who wants to drink barleywine in the spring and summer? By the time the weather shifts it should be getting pretty good, and enjoyable for the season. So good timing, deliberate or not.

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Old 04-13-2014, 11:45 PM   #6
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Thanks for the info! To be honest, I care nothing for clarity. I think a little bit a yeast in suspension adds mouthfeel and created a more harmonized beer. I will check the gravity and the taste very soon and see if its ready to bottle.

In any case I should probably wait several months before popping any bottles and maybe 6 months before I really start drinking them. Agreed?
On clarity I wasn't thinking about yeast. It's the little bits of hop debris that gets hung up in the lacing of a friends glass as they enjoy. Myself I don't care. I go for the taste.
Store your RIS out of sight. Establish a reminder on your PCs calendar for 3 months from now that you can chill and taste one.
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