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Old 12-13-2010, 06:10 PM   #1
andrewdell19
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Default How to make Gluten Free beer clearer

So I have noticed that when I add gelatin to the secondary (1 tbsp gelatin 1 cup of water) it helps the beer become much clearer (and takes some of that sorghum taste out). When the beer is cloudy I assume that it still has the sorghum proteins suspended in the beer and when I add the gelatin it takes the suspended proteins out (creates almost a net).

When I do not add the gelatin, the beer does not get clear and has that sorghum taste to it.

So on my most recent batch, I put the gelatin in and waited a few days (usually that is all it takes) and nothing- did not help at all. So I did it again last Friday and only the bottom 1/4 of the carboy is clearer. Weird! Usually it works on the first try.

It has also been at 46 degrees for about a week (cold crashing) and that did not help.

What do you guys do to make the gluten free beer clear? Any suggestions? When do you add the polyclar (or whatever it is called). Any help would be great!



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Old 12-13-2010, 10:26 PM   #2
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Well crap! I realized I was using PBW as my sanitizer for this brew... so maybe the cloudy beer is due to it being infected with some foreign bacteria... ugh! That means I used it for my Oatmeal Choc Stout that I just brewed this weekend. Ugh I hope it doesnt screw that beer up too... great! I should label things clearer.



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Old 12-13-2010, 11:57 PM   #3
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Have you tried Irish Moss? I use that in most of my beers when I don't get too drunk and forget to put it in. I also try to cool my beer as fast as possible, which I think helps the clarity.

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Old 12-14-2010, 02:52 AM   #4
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+1 on what Lcasanova stated. I also filter my wort from the kettle to the carboy with a coarse grain bag before I pitch my yeast. After a few weeks, all of my GF beers are very, if not crystal, clear.

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Old 12-14-2010, 02:59 AM   #5
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I use what my LHBS has called Super Moss. It says to use a tsp at 15 minutes but I mix up a tsp with 1 ounce of water and let it sit for 10 minutes to swell up before I add it. AND I add one at 30 minutes and one at 15 minutes (Time left in boil) Seems to work OK for me...

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Old 12-14-2010, 04:46 AM   #6
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Irish moss as well. I use a mesh bag to filter as well, but it's mostly to keep the leftover hops from going into the primary. By the second or third week, it's clear. Haven't tried the gelatin yet. I've considered it but most of the time I'm in no hurry so I don't mind letting it sit for a while.

And when you found out about the PBW, how did you use it? Like Starsan?

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Old 12-14-2010, 03:41 PM   #7
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Quote:
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Irish moss as well. I use a mesh bag to filter as well, but it's mostly to keep the leftover hops from going into the primary. By the second or third week, it's clear. Haven't tried the gelatin yet. I've considered it but most of the time I'm in no hurry so I don't mind letting it sit for a while.

And when you found out about the PBW, how did you use it? Like Starsan?
With the PBW I filled the sink with hot water, added whatever amount it says to add, let the primary and other materials soak for 15 mins or so...

I use Irish Moss yes- 1 tsp added directly to the boil. I will try adding it to water first and then adding that to the boil. I will also try using it twice in the boil.

To cool the wort I use the ice bath method stiring the wort to help it cool faster. I just dump the kettle into the primary and dont use the siphon. I will try putting a grain bag at the end of the siphon and go from kettle to primary that way.

I still think I am doing something wrong but I cant for the life of my figure it out.

Thanks for the advice!
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Old 12-14-2010, 04:02 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andrewdell19 View Post
With the PBW I filled the sink with hot water, added whatever amount it says to add, let the primary and other materials soak for 15 mins or so...

I use Irish Moss yes- 1 tsp added directly to the boil. I will try adding it to water first and then adding that to the boil. I will also try using it twice in the boil.

To cool the wort I use the ice bath method stiring the wort to help it cool faster. I just dump the kettle into the primary and dont use the siphon. I will try putting a grain bag at the end of the siphon and go from kettle to primary that way.

I still think I am doing something wrong but I cant for the life of my figure it out.

Thanks for the advice!
PBW has saved my life on many occasions. OK, that's an exaggeration but it is really good stuff.

Don't worry too much about cooling, you can get a clear beer without cooling at all. That has other effects, but it sounds like you are doing fine, consider getting an immersion chiller though, they are cheap and easy to use.

For clarity, make sure to use some sort of agent in the boil with 10min to go. Irish Moss is what I use, but Whirlfloc is basically the same thing but a bit more powerful.

After this, the most effective way to clear something quickly is to chill it after fermentation is complete to 32-40F. This is called cold crashing and I do it for every beer I make. After 3 days, you should be good to rack a very clear beer.

If neither of these solutions work, you can look to gelatin for cleaning things up. The only other possibility I can think of after all of that is to mess with your water chemistry as that can make a beer appear cloudy.

Mostly, I noticed as I got better at my process and refined various items, the beers just cleared up on their own. I know that doesn't help much, but there are probably several ways to improve your system from quicker cooling to more controlled fermentation temperatures and they will all help you make better and clearer beer.

Also, I wouldn't worry too much about the infection possiblity, if it's infected, you'll know.
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Old 12-14-2010, 04:44 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by DKershner View Post
PBW has saved my life on many occasions. OK, that's an exaggeration but it is really good stuff.

Don't worry too much about cooling, you can get a clear beer without cooling at all. That has other effects, but it sounds like you are doing fine, consider getting an immersion chiller though, they are cheap and easy to use.

For clarity, make sure to use some sort of agent in the boil with 10min to go. Irish Moss is what I use, but Whirlfloc is basically the same thing but a bit more powerful.

After this, the most effective way to clear something quickly is to chill it after fermentation is complete to 32-40F. This is called cold crashing and I do it for every beer I make. After 3 days, you should be good to rack a very clear beer.

If neither of these solutions work, you can look to gelatin for cleaning things up. The only other possibility I can think of after all of that is to mess with your water chemistry as that can make a beer appear cloudy.

Mostly, I noticed as I got better at my process and refined various items, the beers just cleared up on their own. I know that doesn't help much, but there are probably several ways to improve your system from quicker cooling to more controlled fermentation temperatures and they will all help you make better and clearer beer.

Also, I wouldn't worry too much about the infection possiblity, if it's infected, you'll know.
Fermentation temp remains relatively constant at around 65 or so. Do you pour your kettle right into the primary? OR do you siphon it over? I might try and siphon it over with a grain bag at the end of the siphon to see if that helps any.

Usually the gelatin clears the beer right up. For some reason it is not working for this batch. I will try cold crashing for another week or so at around 35 degrees.
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Old 12-14-2010, 04:48 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andrewdell19 View Post
Fermentation temp remains relatively constant at around 65 or so. Do you pour your kettle right into the primary? OR do you siphon it over? I might try and siphon it over with a grain bag at the end of the siphon to see if that helps any.

Usually the gelatin clears the beer right up. For some reason it is not working for this batch. I will try cold crashing for another week or so at around 35 degrees.
You really shouldn't have to use gelatin every batch, although you can. I don't think filtering the hot and cold break or even hops out of the fermenter will really help, although I do. I do it for reasons of room in my fermenters though.

In any case, the last thing I would be worried about is clarity in these beers. Once we nail down what makes em taste good, we can worry about how they look. I made a beer that looked exactly like milk, but it tasted nice and light!


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