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Old 09-19-2006, 01:05 AM   #1
Orpheus
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Default Keg Conditioning Advice Sought

Last Tuesday I kegged my Pumpkin Ale and primed it, thinking I'd let it age gracefully for a few weeks before tapping it.

My wife informs me that the couple that has been over for the past three weekends in a row to drink my homebrew are coming over again Saturday. Word has now spread and there's even more people coming now.

Long story short, I need the beer for this Saturday night. I checked with Papa Charlie and he says 1-2 weeks conditioning is fine.

So, if you were me, how would you do this? When should I put the keg into my kegerator to chill? I was thinking when I get home from work on Friday. I figure that would give me 10 days conditioning and also allow enough time to chill overnight. Does this sound like a reasonable thing to do?

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Old 09-19-2006, 04:19 AM   #2
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hmmmmm, i'm not sure if it will be properly carbonated by the time you want to serve.

do you have a carbonation stone? also called an aeration stone, diffusion stone, etc. it can be used to quickly carbonate the beer.

at this point, i'm not sure how much it will carbonate in those 10 days you give it. you could hurry it up by increasing the temperature, but that is no guarantee.

the safest route would be to chill and carbonate now. the sugar you added won't have that great of a taste influence, and the yeast will go dormant at serving temperatures, so you can just force carb and balance the system before you have to serve. if you do it now, you can get everything properly setup for the saturday. this is the route i would take, just because i generally mess something up, and if i have a few extra days to take care of it, all the better, and no rushing the day of, hopefully.

best of luck!

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Old 09-19-2006, 01:15 PM   #3
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If all else failed you could force carb on Friday night. That's what I'd probably do. Hook it up to the tank, put it in the fridge and try it. I bet you'll have at least some carbonation.

If you want to kick it up you know what to do. Just in case you don't though, and don't have a diffusion stone you can crank the pressure up and shake the keg as long as you can stand to. I mean like 30 minutes. It would really be better if the keg was already cold. also, it might be a little more sweet, because of the leftover sugar.

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Old 09-19-2006, 03:08 PM   #4
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i don't think the sugar will influence the taste that much. in a keg, he's probably priming with only 1/2 cup corn sugar or its equivalent, which really isn't much considering it is 5 gallons of liquid.

also, if you choose to shake, make sure you do this at least a couple hours before you intend on serving so that after you carbonate it properly, you let it set. if you just tap it right after you shake it, it will all be foam that you pour out.

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Old 09-19-2006, 03:09 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gnef
you could hurry it up by increasing the temperature, but that is no guarantee.
If anything this will deter your carbonation. The colder the liquid the more readily gasses dissolve in it. Carbing at serving temp. is probably the best idea.
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Old 09-19-2006, 03:10 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clayof2day
If anything this will deter your carbonation. The colder the liquid the more readily gasses dissolve in it. Carbing at serving temp. is probably the best idea.
I think he means if he wants it to carbonate naturally.
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Old 09-19-2006, 03:15 PM   #7
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be careful, the spices in your pumpkin are going to need plenty of time to mellow. especially the nutmeg if you used any.

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Old 09-19-2006, 03:19 PM   #8
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I would strongly encourage you not to rush your beer, especially for presentation to a large group.

Aging of homebrew significantly increases it's quality. Let it age so that the flavors can mingle and mellow.

Better to have it done right than rushing things and having to explain to people who don't udnerstand.

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Old 09-19-2006, 03:38 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by God Emporer BillyBrew
I think he means if he wants it to carbonate naturally.

aaaaaaaaah. Good catch, I got ya. That makes sense.
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