Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Fermentation & Yeast > so i had a talk with a brewery about fermentation.i was shocked at what they said
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Old 09-15-2010, 12:06 AM   #1
ColonelForbin
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Default so i had a talk with a brewery about fermentation.i was shocked at what they said

they said that in all of their beers( brown ale, pale ale, wheat, porter, stout) that they started fermentation at a rediculous temp in the 80's just to ensure that they had a quick and consistent start to all of their fermentations and once it started they bumped it down to an appropriate temp. i couldnt believe this, since i have always learned that this is unacceptable in american ales. although im not the biggest fan of their beers they do taste clean with no off flavors or esters that high fermentation temps would give off. i would also think that changing the temp from warm to cold so drastically would give rise to off flavors as well but it appears that it doesnt in their case. would someone help shed some light on what i am missing here and how they can pull this off. i know most breweries do not participate in these types of practices and was wondering if maybe the quality of their beer is slightly suffering from this.

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Old 09-15-2010, 12:23 AM   #2
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Temp isn't important for the first phase of fermentation, as long as you don't kill the yeast.

I don't remember the specifics, but I heard the rationale a big ago on a podcast and it might be in Palmers book. When I get home ill double check.

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Old 09-15-2010, 12:41 AM   #3
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considering that their is nothing wrong in their practices, a quick fermentation is more desirable than one that may take any length of time longer. so why wouldnt more breweries, homebrewers do this?

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Old 09-15-2010, 12:48 AM   #4
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The argument against this practice as articulated, for example, by Palmer, is that the high level of initial fermentation activity will produce a proportionally high level of by-products that the less active, lower temperature fermentation in the later stages will be less likely to completely "clean up". I can't speak to it from experience, but feel more comfortable pitching at fermentation temps if possible.

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Old 09-15-2010, 12:49 AM   #5
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Breweries tend to ferment a lot warmer than homebrewers. The hydrostatic pressure created by 15+ bbls of wort/beer is a LOT more than 5 measley gallons. The pressure in professional fermenters keep ester production down so they are able to ferment much higher than we can get away with. 80F might translate into maybe 72 for homebrewers, then ramping down to 65-68F. Thats just my best guess.

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Old 09-15-2010, 12:56 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edcculus View Post
Breweries tend to ferment a lot warmer than homebrewers. The hydrostatic pressure created by 15+ bbls of wort/beer is a LOT more than 5 measley gallons. The pressure in professional fermenters keep ester production down so they are able to ferment much higher than we can get away with. 80F might translate into maybe 72 for homebrewers, then ramping down to 65-68F. Thats just my best guess.
what about higher alcohols and solventy flavors.
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Old 09-15-2010, 12:58 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doctorRobert View Post
Temp isn't important for the first phase of fermentation, as long as you don't kill the yeast.
I disagree with this. Most of the estery flavors associated with beer are produced during the growth phase of the yeast. Different temperatures during the growth phase result in different types of flavors - it's not as simple as the flavors being produced more quickly because the yeast are more active.

If you check out the customer reviews of White Labs strains, people are always saying stuff like, "Oh man don't pitch this into anything over 72 or you'll get [some crazy flavor]." Belgian and Bavarian wheat yeasts are great examples of this - too high temp during the growth phase and you've got banana beer.
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Old 09-15-2010, 01:55 AM   #8
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What's the name of the brewery?

Its easy to think of commercial brewing as home brewing scaled up, but there are important differences, like fermentor geometry, as previously mentioned.

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Old 09-15-2010, 02:23 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ColonelForbin View Post
what about higher alcohols and solventy flavors.
As far as I've heard talking to brewers when I lived in Cleveland (Great Lakes, Hoppin' Frog, and Buckeye Brewing Co) and from the multiple podcasts from Jamil's Can You Brew It, higher temps (which can be interpreted as up to 80 give or take) do not cause problems with esters, or other off flavors like higher alcohols.
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Old 09-15-2010, 02:35 AM   #10
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Ok....so if I understand right, you could ferment much warmer if you have it under pressure, like if you fermented in a corney with a pressure release set at carb pressures to naturally carb as you ferment. THAT is interesting.... two birds, one stone. Someone smarter please comment on my logic here.

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