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Old 04-12-2011, 05:28 PM   #1
aomagman78
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Default Brew Timing Question

So...I brewed the recipe below on March 30th and fermented ~60C. The gravity settled to 1.012 and stabilized as of April 6th. My predicament is that I am moving on May 22nd and would really like to have the beer consumed by then (5 gallons). I already have 90 other beers to drink by the same date (obviously friends will be helping). So, if this was your situation - when would you bottle this recipe for best taste given the time restraints?

Samples are still a little more bitter than I would like and I know that will mellow with age. My three samples over the past week have shown great strides in both clarity and de-bittering. Thanks for opinions.

60-min partial mash
3.15lbs Pilsen LME (late addition)
1lb Briess Pilsen DME
3lb British Pilsner Malt
.75lb Light Carastan
.5lb Carapils

1oz Northern Brewer 60min
.5oz Tettnanger 15min
.5oz Hallertau flameout
.5oz Hallertau dry hopped
1tsp Irish Moss 15min
Safale US-05

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Old 04-12-2011, 05:47 PM   #2
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I think we'll assume you meant 60 F and not 60 C. 60 C would be 140 F. Either way, why are you trying to rush and drink this many brews? Why not just bottle and box them up shortly before you move?

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Old 04-12-2011, 07:03 PM   #3
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If it were me I would go ahead and bottle them this weekend. Thats over two weeks in primary which from my experience is fine. Some people on here do 2 weeks as their typical rule I think.

I can understand not wanting to have to move beer with everything else that you own. If it were me I would leave them with friends. Or, hide some in conspicuous locations through the old house with notes on them about what it is. The best way to long term age a brew is by not knowing you even have it.

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Old 04-12-2011, 07:17 PM   #4
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Obviously you're free to do what you want, but I don't think that two weeks is going to be enough, regardless of what the gravity says. I think if you search around here, you'll find that a GOOD proportion of people on here like 3 weeks at the VERY minimum, but feel that 4 or 5 is even better. But I think they'll all agree that two just isn't quite enough.

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Old 04-13-2011, 12:44 AM   #5
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--Yes, 60F. Guess I've been doing too many engineering calculations.

--I'm moving to Phoenix, AZ in May, so it's going to be 100+. Any beer would be in a 120+ moving van for a long time. Doesn't sound like a brew I want to drink. Hence the not wanting to move with it.

And I'm a new brewer, so I have a zest for brewing and wanted to push the limit on how many I could get in on a short time.

Not really looking to bottle quite yet, but I think sometime early next week- April 18th or 19th? Give it ~3 weeks in primary and then 2-2.5 in bottles. That'd leave almost 3 weeks to consume it.

Thankfully it's a simple-ish beer, not too complex of flavor. So hopefully that will help it mellow/age sooner rather than later. But if I have a bunch left over when I move I'll be giving it away as goodbye presents to friends.

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Old 04-13-2011, 12:49 AM   #6
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I bottle or keg all the time at two or three weeks. I'm not sure what all the hullaballo about all these extra long (unnecessarily long) primaries is all about. It seems like a couple of people have done it with good results, but it certainly isn't required! From there, now people are preaching to leave it for a month. No need at all! You won't harm it by leaving it that long, but I certainly see no benefit. Once the beer is finished, clear, and has had a few days to condition, it's fine to bottle.

Two weeks in the fermenter is fine, as long as the beer is fairly clear (so you don't get so much crud in the bottle) and the FG has been stable for at least three days.

Bottle it!

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Old 04-13-2011, 01:55 AM   #7
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Three things that I look for before I bottle: gravity, clarity and taste. If the gravity has stabilized, the sediment kicked up during fermentation has settled down and the beer tastes like I hoped it would, I bottle it. Please note that time has nothing to do with it. If those three things are present, I don't care if it's been two weeks or two days, there's nothing left to gain by leaving it in the fermenter.

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Old 04-13-2011, 03:31 AM   #8
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Yooper - are you pretty much saying that aside from full on fermentation, there is really just cleaning up to do. And the yeast in suspension is plenty to accomplish this, you don't need a whole yeast cake. Therefore, you're just as well off carbing up the bottles at the same time as this - so bottle after stable FG and clear beer?

On a similar note - Is a cold crash a good idea for this? I don't have a fridge for it, but is there any reason not to put the carboy on ice for 24hrs (it sits in a big cooler in my tub) to really drop stuff out of suspension? It's a 4SRM brew, so it'd be great if it were clear, would this technique help in that regard?

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Old 04-13-2011, 08:54 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aomagman78 View Post
Yooper - are you pretty much saying that aside from full on fermentation, there is really just cleaning up to do. And the yeast in suspension is plenty to accomplish this, you don't need a whole yeast cake. Therefore, you're just as well off carbing up the bottles at the same time as this - so bottle after stable FG and clear beer?

On a similar note - Is a cold crash a good idea for this? I don't have a fridge for it, but is there any reason not to put the carboy on ice for 24hrs (it sits in a big cooler in my tub) to really drop stuff out of suspension? It's a 4SRM brew, so it'd be great if it were clear, would this technique help in that regard?
Yes, I'm saying that once the beer is done I give it time to sit a bit, and to clear. This is usually about two weeks or so, but I've gone as long as three when I've dryhopped or had a sluggish fermentation. After the beer is completely finished, I make sure it has a few days at fermentation temperature to clean up any byproducts of fermentation, and then allow it to clear. I wouldn't bottle a cloudy beer.

You can leave a beer for far longer without harm, but after that point I don't see an advantage either.

As far as cold crashing, it really does work to clear a beer! 24 hours may not be long enough, though. It might take a couple of days but it definitely helps clear a beer that has yeast and other solids still in suspension.
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Old 04-13-2011, 09:24 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yooper View Post
I bottle or keg all the time at two or three weeks. I'm not sure what all the hullaballo about all these extra long (unnecessarily long) primaries is all about.
I agree, with the caveat that you have to know what you're doing (which Yooper certainly does) Pitching enough healthy yeast and fermenting at proper temperatures was what took my beers from needing months to be drinkable down to 2 weeks. Obviously some styles will be ready faster than others, but for a generic pale ale or stout or something, 2 weeks in primary is plenty. [edit: to clarify, I mean 2 weeks before I cold crash, or rack to secondary to dry hop, not necessarily 2 weeks from kettle to keg]

For newer brewers, I absolutely tell them to let it sit 3+ weeks, though.
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