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Old 10-08-2012, 01:51 AM   #1
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Default 1st Brew Progress and Questions

So I just finished the fermentation stage on my first brew, a Brewer's Best PSA IPA. Brew day was anxiety filled, but I was super attentive and felt like I hit all my targets (steeping temp/time, boil time, hop additions, CLEANLINESS). I kept a pretty detailed log in excel with my times for each step and notes about how each one went. I decided, for two reasons, that I wanted to rack it into a secondary, the two reasons being dry hopping and freeing up my primary for an imperial blonde kit I just picked up (I read 100 threads on secondarys and these seemed like the only two good reasons to do so, that and I'm a little bit impatient to get this first one bottled and don't want to leave it in the primary for a month). I did my OG and FG readings (1.068 and 1.012 respectively, giving me 7.35%ABV, according to the recipe sheet). As I was a little nervous about dumping the sample I pulled for FG reading back in, I decided to drink it, and I gotta say, the damn thing tastes like decent IPA! Albeit flat and a little young, but no "off flavors" or other such things as I have read about so far. So here's my many thanks for all the advice here. Prost!

So the questions:
1. I oxygenated my wort by pouring it back and forth between the fermenter and the brew pot three times and ended up with a ton of foam (I assumed this meant it was well oxygenated). The instructions on the yeast packet said to sprinkle it on, but when I did, it just sat on the foam, so I stirred it in, nervously. Is it better to pull some pitching temp wort out and mix the yeast first and then pitch it or just stir it in?

2. I made a Star-San solution to sanitize my siphon and hydrometer for the racking and wanted to know if I could just pour it all back into my primary as I'm going to be brewing tomorrow and would hate to waste it. Will it still be as effective?

Again, thanks for all the advice. I'll update on the new brew tomorrow.

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Old 10-08-2012, 02:00 AM   #2
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Sounds like you did great! The 1.012 FG sounds appropriate, the only very slight quibble is that the only way to know for sure is to check again in a couple days. Which is moot at this point, but you're probably OK. What I mean is, was it stable at 1.012, or was it on its way to 1.009?

Your star san is fine to keep using. That's what I do (within reason of course).

Your reasons for transferring to secondary are valid, but I gotta ask since you didn't say: How long was the primary? I'm in the "longer the better" camp. I know, that's what she said...

Cheers!

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Old 10-08-2012, 02:39 AM   #3
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The primary was 8 days, because I was nervous about exposing multiple times to get a SG reading, and there were 3 consecutive days of no noticeable action on the air lock. I need to get a beer/wine thief so it's easier to pull beer for a check. The next question is how long I let the IPA condition at room temp before bottling. I know it could be anywhere from 2 weeks to 2 months or longer, but there is no way I'm patient enough to let my first brew just sit that long (might as well be honest about that one). I'm going to stick to the 1-2-3 method on this one and see how it goes.

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Old 10-08-2012, 03:44 AM   #4
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Are you planning a dry hop? Wait a week, toss the hops in, wait another, then bottle.

Cheers!

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Old 10-08-2012, 03:52 AM   #5
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I'd say your second reason for using a secondary is most valid... I dry hop in primary all the time.

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Old 10-08-2012, 12:10 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frazier View Post
Are you planning a dry hop? Wait a week, toss the hops in, wait another, then bottle.

Cheers!
So this may be another "whoops" noob moment, but I put the hops in the carboy and racked it yesterday, planning on hopping the entire 2 weeks. I only used 2oz Australian Galaxy pellets, and I've seen way larger DH doses, so I'm hoping I just end up with a big hoppy IPA, which is my favorite style lately. Any issues with leaving it the two weeks?
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Old 10-08-2012, 01:17 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HopChef View Post
So this may be another "whoops" noob moment, but I put the hops in the carboy and racked it yesterday, planning on hopping the entire 2 weeks. I only used 2oz Australian Galaxy pellets, and I've seen way larger DH doses, so I'm hoping I just end up with a big hoppy IPA, which is my favorite style lately. Any issues with leaving it the two weeks?
There is nothing wrong with 14 days of dry hop but do not go more. It really comes down to what you like. I'm a fan of dry hopping no longer than 7 days as I find the results to be great. Some people go as little as 3-5 days.

The thing to keep in mind is that the aromas and flavors of dry hop will begin to deteriorate as time goes on and most hoppy beers should be consumed fresh and within 3 months. Most will begin to lose the aroma and flavor after that.
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Old 10-08-2012, 01:30 PM   #8
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Thanks for the feedback. I was a little worried, but obviously I need to start getting over that. So how about 10 day dry hop, then into the beer fridge for a 3 day cold crash?

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Old 10-08-2012, 01:44 PM   #9
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Quote:
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Thanks for the feedback. I was a little worried, but obviously I need to start getting over that. So how about 10 day dry hop, then into the beer fridge for a 3 day cold crash?
That would be more in line with my process, give it a try and see how it turns out, take notes and if you brew it again you can tweak the schedule.
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