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Old 09-19-2012, 03:22 AM   #1
Mike37
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Default " Real ale" in 2 liter bottles

Hey guys, so I want to figure out a way to serve homebrew real ale style from 1 or 2 liter bottles. Of course this isn't true real ale, but I'm just going for the effect here. Before someone says "just low carb it and pour from the bottle", I want that sparkler effect of knocking out what little co2 there is. Does anyone have an easy way to adapt a pump and faucet to a soda bottle cap? Thanks!

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Old 09-19-2012, 05:16 PM   #2
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I just built my own version of this:

(that's forum member beardedsquash, btw)

I made a couple of modifications.

One, I used polyethelne tubing instead of regular vinyl. This gave me a little more rigidity and allowed me to heat the spout and bend it downwards so it stays pointing where I want instead of flailing about. Finally, I added a hole to the cap next that I place a single finger over while squeezing beer out and open up so that air is allowed in without bubbling through the beer. I'm working on fitting a check valve here but I drilled my original hole too big for the valve I bought. Plus the valve seems like it will be too restrictive... but anyway, the total cost for me was about $20 with all the brass and way more tubing than I needed.

That's a pretty low tech solution. You could also look into adapting an RV hand pump like this: http://www.amazon.com/Valterra-RP800...s=rv+hand+pump. If you search the forums you'll find a few different examples. I'm currently drawing up some plans to build a beer engine with one of these pumps that draws from mini kegs.

Finally, why isn't it true real ale? The most important aspects of real ale are natural carbonation and serving from the vessel secondary fermentation occurs in. As long as you're priming and letting your beer naturally carbonate in those two liters, it's about as real as real ale gets!
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Old 09-19-2012, 05:27 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Mike37 View Post
Hey guys, so I want to figure out a way to serve homebrew real ale style from 1 or 2 liter bottles. Of course this isn't true real ale, but I'm just going for the effect here. Before someone says "just low carb it and pour from the bottle", I want that sparkler effect of knocking out what little co2 there is. Does anyone have an easy way to adapt a pump and faucet to a soda bottle cap? Thanks!
Maybe not the real answer but according to CAMRA (real ale group in England)
Real (cask ) ale is fermented in the primary until either finished or almost finished fermenting. Then kegged with finings.

If finished fermenting some sugar is added, if not the rest of the fermentation takes place in the keg.

To me this is no different (at least in the first case) than bottling a beer with the right amount of priming sugar to reach a low carbonation.

"The cellar person will check that the beer is clear, has the right level of carbonation, and has lost the unpleasant flavours associated with beer that is too young."

After bottling the CAMRA process above (showing how the kegs are cared for in the pub) can be carried out by the bottler.

1. Wait till the beer is bright (clear).
2. Wait till it's carbonated. (I would shoot for a very low CO2 level).
3. Wait for it to condition.

In plastic 2 liter bottles you can see if it's clear, feel if it's carbonated but to check conditioning you will have to taste it. Put up several smaller bottles and check them each week once your beer is clear and the bottle is tight as a drum.

Then it's cask ale if you serve it fresh...If you store it, it's just plain old bottled homebrew.LOL

As far as a sparkler goes do a little splash pour to get the required head and drive out some of the CO2.

OMO

bosco

ps. As far as a beer engine goes ??? There are plastic pumps that dispense liquids in 8 oz guantities but the required force would probably collapse a plastic bottle and after a 8 or so pumps you would be changing bottles.. I'd just pour from the bottle and screw the cap back on.
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Old 09-19-2012, 05:37 PM   #4
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If you store it, it's just plain old bottled homebrew.LOL
Plain old bottled homebrew IS real ale

Straight from the mouth of CAMRA (which has a far more anal definition of real ale than I think any reasonable person should)

Quote:
Real ale is a natural product brewed using traditional ingredients and left to mature in the container from which it is served in the pub through a process called secondary fermentation. It is this process which makes real ale unique amongst beers and develops the wonderful tastes and aromas which processed beers can never provide.
also
Quote:
Real ale comes in bottles too! It is a beer that continues to ferment, mature and condition within the bottle. It contains a visible amount of viable yeast cells together with sufficient sugars for fermentation to take place. Bottle conditioned beers will continue to improve and mature in the bottle but they should be kept in the cool and the dark.
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Old 09-19-2012, 05:43 PM   #5
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Plain old bottled homebrew IS real ale
That's true, but when I bottle an ale I usually let it condition in the bottle for a month or two. I don't think they let it condition (I could be very wrong here) for that length of time, when served in a pub. My stuff does taste ok after a week or two or three but I do prefer the taste after a month or so.

bosco
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Old 09-19-2012, 05:54 PM   #6
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That's true, but when I bottle an ale I usually let it condition in the bottle for a month or two. I don't think they let it condition (I could be very wrong here) for that length of time, when served in a pub. My stuff does taste ok after a week or two or three but I do prefer the taste after a month or so.

bosco
Well, they're definitely allowed to condition - that's the secondary fermentation bit. It really depends on the style though, how long the beer is allowed to condition. There's not a strict rule by any means. An authentic english mild with a low carbonation is going to require a lot less conditioning than, say, a highly carbonated hefeweizen.

Also, those smaller beers are going to be ready to drink a lot sooner than a big stout, for example.
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Old 09-19-2012, 05:54 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by jhall4
I just built my own version of this: Video Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jWDgQqD38iA (that's forum member beardedsquash, btw)

I made a couple of modifications.

One, I used polyethelne tubing instead of regular vinyl. This gave me a little more rigidity and allowed me to heat the spout and bend it downwards so it stays pointing where I want instead of flailing about. Finally, I added a hole to the cap next that I place a single finger over while squeezing beer out and open up so that air is allowed in without bubbling through the beer. I'm working on fitting a check valve here but I drilled my original hole too big for the valve I bought. Plus the valve seems like it will be too restrictive... but anyway, the total cost for me was about $20 with all the brass and way more tubing than I needed.

That's a pretty low tech solution. You could also look into adapting an RV hand pump like this: http://www.amazon.com/Valterra-RP800...s=rv+hand+pump. If you search the forums you'll find a few different examples. I'm currently drawing up some plans to build a beer engine with one of these pumps that draws from mini kegs.

Finally, why isn't it true real ale? The most important aspects of real ale are natural carbonation and serving from the vessel secondary fermentation occurs in. As long as you're priming and letting your beer naturally carbonate in those two liters, it's about as real as real ale gets!
First of all, huge thanks for the info! I've seen beardedsquash's other video on his corny hand pump, but missed that one somehow.

That's a great idea and a fantastic video. While that's a bit less... permanent than I'd like (LMAO'd at his "while this looks ghetto" line with the thing bobbing around like a limp... well you know). I was able to use that to piece together an idea.

Basically what I'll do is install the two barbed fittings plus o-ring in the soda bottle cap and instead of a sprinkler tip on the "non-submerged" length of line, it'll be attached to an RV hand pump. Then everything can be tossed into a box and placed on the bar.

One thing I can't tell by the video, does he use anything to attach the beer lines to the barbed fittings or is it just friction holding them on? Maybe someone has better eyes than me.

I suppose this is true real ale after all. I was under the assumption that I was rednecking it up with the soda bottles too much!
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Old 09-19-2012, 06:03 PM   #8
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First of all, huge thanks for the info! I've seen beardedsquash's other video on his corny hand pump, but missed that one somehow.

That's a great idea and a fantastic video. While that's a bit less... permanent than I'd like (LMAO'd at his "while this looks ghetto" line with the thing bobbing around like a limp... well you know). I was able to use that to piece together an idea.

Basically what I'll do is install the two barbed fittings plus o-ring in the soda bottle cap and instead of a sprinkler tip on the "non-submerged" length of line, it'll be attached to an RV hand pump. Then everything can be tossed into a box and placed on the bar.

One thing I can't tell by the video, does he use anything to attach the beer lines to the barbed fittings or is it just friction holding them on? Maybe someone has better eyes than me.

I suppose this is true real ale after all. I was under the assumption that I was rednecking it up with the soda bottles too much!
Friction is plenty strong enough to hold the hose on at those pressures. If you're worried you could try using some hose clamps but IMO it's not worth it - plus they might be too bulky to fit in the bottle.

And yeah, I'm sure the ultra purist would scoff at plastic but the important part about real ale is that it's kept on the yeast that drops out after secondary fermentation. This keeps the beer 'alive' and changing over its shelf life.
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Old 09-19-2012, 06:14 PM   #9
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Awesome, thanks. I'll be back with pics of the finished product hopefully soon.

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Old 09-19-2012, 06:27 PM   #10
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I just went down to the cellar and brought up a bottle of brown ale that has been carbonated at room temp for 10 days and has been conditioning for about another ten days at around 65 degrees. It's in the fridge and I'll give it a taste in an hour or so..

Will follow up in a while with the results.

bosco

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