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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > why do you leave wort in primary for 28 days
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Old 02-15-2010, 08:51 PM   #1
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Default why do you leave wort in primary for 28 days

this is a question i have for those who leave wort in primary for 28 days. Why? Because i tasted my beer after fermentation (5 days) and it was the best full bodied beer that i had brew. After i left it for another 23 days and 15 days of conditioning it is weak and no carbonation. Please explain to me this technique. I messed up my brew. this was going to the State Fair competition.
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Old 02-15-2010, 08:56 PM   #2
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What kind of beer?

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Old 02-15-2010, 08:57 PM   #3
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Clearing/conditioning, mostly. Not sure what you did there.

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Old 02-15-2010, 08:58 PM   #4
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California Style Imperial Ale

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Old 02-15-2010, 09:01 PM   #5
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First of all beer in a fermenter is already a BEER and not WORT. Once you add yeast, it's a beer. And why is it better after longer fermentation? There is probably a lot of answers to that question, but the bottom line is that people tested it both ways, and majority of brewers nowadays say 3-4 weeks in primary does your beer good.

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Old 02-15-2010, 09:06 PM   #6
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It's likely that what you perceived to be "fuller flavor" was simply a yeast-dense beer that had not completely attenuated and was still sweet from non-fermented sugars. Now that the beer is fermented and the sugars converted to alcohol, the beer is indeed thinner.

Almost every brewer will attest that tasting fully fermented and properly conditioned beer out of a secondary will yield disappointing (thin and flavorless) taste results.

Carbonation is a huge component of rounding out the flavor and mouthfeel profile. See the beer through and don't judge your product until it is "final".

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Old 02-15-2010, 09:20 PM   #7
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I really appreciate all the info guys. I will see the beer through and give it another 3 weeks in a warmer room.
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Old 02-15-2010, 09:30 PM   #8
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during primary fermentation the yeast convert the sugars to alcohol, CO2, and various byproducts that can cause off flavors. during secondary fermentation, which happens during and after primary fermentation, the yeast clean up those byproducts resulting in a cleaner beer. BeirMuncher is right carbonation helps quite a bit. just let the beer sit and carb fully then taste the beer. if its still not right just wait a few more weeks. the taste of a beer will change quite a bit while its in the bottle and will improve.

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Old 02-15-2010, 10:52 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sims_l22 View Post
i tasted my beer after fermentation (5 days) and it was the best full bodied beer that i had brew. After i left it for another 23 days and 15 days of conditioning it is weak and no carbonation.
During fermentation and conditioning the CO2 is allowed to escape. Afterward it is primed with sugar in the bottle or force carbonated in a keg.

Young beers taste sweeter (even after feremtnation is complete). The sweetness mellows and melds with the other flavors as it conditions, whether that's done in primary, secondary, or bottle/keg.
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Old 02-16-2010, 03:24 AM   #10
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Carbonation *does* change the flavor of the beer.

Ever noticed how flat soda tastes different from fresh soda, even at the same temperature? Same thing with beer.

What happens is that as carbon dioxide is subjected to pressure in a container with beer (which is mostly water), it enters into solution and an amount of carbonic acid (H2CO3) is created. Carbonic acid exists in relation to the dissolved carbon dioxide in solution.

Carbonic acid is very acidic, and adds a tangy flavor to beer. As your beer fizzes and goes flat, the amount of carbon dioxide in your beer lowers, and therefore carbonic acid breaks down, literally changing the flavor of your beer. This is why some maltier beers are tastier at low carbonation (wee heavy), and other, fruiter beers are better with high carbonation (hefenweizens). One of the reasons why hefs are served with lemon (or orange if you're a Blue Moon drinker) is the citric acid, which reinforces the flavors introduced by a high level of carbonation.

When your beer tasted fantastic so soon after fermentation, you were probably tasting a significant amount of carbonation along with the beer. After 2-3 weeks, a lot of that carbon dioxide has left solution and your beer tastes flat.

So long story short, carb it. It will literally change the flavor of your beer.

Note: I'm not a chemist, and could be talking out my rear on this, but I'm pretty sure the basics are right in there.

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