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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > question about beer sitting on yeast for a while
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Old 03-08-2012, 07:53 PM   #1
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Default question about beer sitting on yeast for a while

Hey all,
Just a question about having your beer sit on the big yeast cake at the bottom of your primary for a long time. My question is, say that you left your beer in your primary, with all the yeast, for 6 months. How would this beer differ in character from one that you siphoned into a secondary and left for the same amount of time?

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Old 03-08-2012, 08:11 PM   #2
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You can leave beer on the yeast cake for a good 2-3 months without issue, but much longer than that and yeast autolysis and related off flavors becomes an issue when you have a large yeast colony. If you MUST store long term like that, best to rack to secondary in the 6-8 week timeframe. Better yet, STORE AND AGE IN BOTTLES!!

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Old 03-08-2012, 08:30 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hotpants
Hey all,
Just a question about having your beer sit on the big yeast cake at the bottom of your primary for a long time. My question is, say that you left your beer in your primary, with all the yeast, for 6 months. How would this beer differ in character from one that you siphoned into a secondary and left for the same amount of time?
Alot depends on open versus closed fetmentors as well
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Old 03-08-2012, 08:35 PM   #4
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Not that I've done it or had any direct experience with it, but I've read reports here on HBT of folks who've left fermenters forgotten for 6-8 months and reported that their beers came out just fine for it.

If you've already left said beer in primary for 6 months, the least you can do is pull a sample and taste it. Chances are it's just fine - worst case, most hop aroma is probably long gone, or quite faded at best.

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Old 03-08-2012, 08:39 PM   #5
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Folks have left their beer in primary for a year with no off flavor issues. Autolysis is not a given even after a few months, like some might have suggested. It has more to do with yeast health than time on a yeast cake, and in this day in age our yeast tends to be much healthier than it was 30+ years ago when homebrewing was illegal in the states, and there wasn't a lot of fresh yeast readily available...Our yeast is healthier today, and isn't as prone to autolysing.

This is the most discussed topic on here, it has been readily covered. I suggest you read THIS thread, it's become the "uber discussion" on this topic thread. Every discussion, question, answer, citation, etch is in that thread....

To Secondary or Not? John Palmer and Jamil Zainasheff Weigh In .

Many of us leave our beer in primary for a month minimum then bottle.....We find out beers to be clearer and better tasting.

I suggest you read that thread, and experiment for yourself, and make up your own mind.

There's thousands of threads where folks have ventured their opinions, and argued incessantly, but it ultimately comes down to what works for you......

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Old 03-08-2012, 09:36 PM   #6
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Thanks all! good to know, and ill check out the other threads, I didnt realize this was debated so often. one love

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