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Old 03-16-2009, 01:31 PM   #1
TheTower
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So, long story short, my buddy went into the peace corps last month, and I'm "borrowing" his brewing equipment while he's gone. With the brews I've done, I've bottled one 22oz that I intend to save and give him a sampling of my work while he was gone. He'll be back in two years. Has anyone out there let beer condition this long? Or is there any reason to think they might hit a plateau and begin to sour with this process? I want to do this with every batch I make, so we're talking ales, blondes, wheats, porters, stouts and whatever else I might create in the next 2 years.
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Old 03-16-2009, 01:35 PM   #2
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Not speaking from experience, but my understanding is that at some point, especially with lower gravity beer, they won't be too pleasant any more. If you want to brew up something big, like a barleywine, that should hold for that long.

 
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Old 03-16-2009, 01:42 PM   #3
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In the Dec 07 Zymurgy Charlie Papazian reviewed bottles of homebrew going back to the first AHC competition that he had stored, and none of them went bad, some had not held up but most of them he felt were awesome...We're talking over 20 years worth of beers.

It's going to really depend on the style and the recipe...Barleywines may not even come into their own for years and if properly stored may be good for decades.

A hefe on the other hand should be drunk really young..

I've tasted year old bottles of beer, and none of them had gone downhill either.

An IPA may lose it's hoppiness over that time, and be more like a pale ale, but an Imperial IPA may be perfect in two years..Any strong ales like Belgian Strongs, Barley Wines, Tripels, Dubbels, imperial Stouts, may just be coming into their own then...Stouts and Porters may be perfect in two years...

Really just about anything will hold up, except for stuff like heffes and wheats that are meant to be drunk young.

SO basically I wouldn't worry about it.....Just brew and stick stuff aside for him, the majority of it will be fine, if not awesome.
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Old 03-16-2009, 02:03 PM   #4
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I just drank a dry stout that was nearly a year old last night. It was very different than it was when it was fresh, but definitely not bad.

I say do it. If you save it and it's not good anymore by the time he gets back, what's really lost?

 
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Old 03-16-2009, 02:06 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Blow Leprechaun View Post
I just drank a dry stout that was nearly a year old last night. It was very different than it was when it was fresh, but definitely not bad.

I say do it. If you save it and it's not good anymore by the time he gets back, what's really lost?
Especially if he's gonna get a bunch of bombers of different beers.
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Old 03-16-2009, 02:10 PM   #6
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I broke into a case of beer that I had move around from house to house to storage over the span of 5 years and had some Irish Red that I did back in '02.

Very interesting sherry/malt notes and the hops where totally gone.

Brew something that will age gracefully and you'll be good to go. American Light Lager is not the style you want.
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Old 03-16-2009, 02:16 PM   #7
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Perhaps start a brewing schedule with beers which will hold up best starting soonest and as the two year mark approaches slowly move down the scale towards pale ales and lighter beer?
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Old 03-16-2009, 02:17 PM   #8
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I think it will be a good idea. I know that the wheats etc. and lighter ABV ones may not be great by then, but I bet they'll still be good.

Edit: way too late on the answer...
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Old 03-16-2009, 02:46 PM   #9
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We just opened a bottle of "Eleven" (Weyerbacher - Triple IPA) on Saturday. The batch is from 2006 - it was fabulous. We have 4 left, so I'll report back next year when we open it again

 
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Old 03-18-2009, 06:23 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeamusMac View Post
Perhaps start a brewing schedule with beers which will hold up best starting soonest and as the two year mark approaches slowly move down the scale towards pale ales and lighter beer?
That there is the best Idea. I opened a bottle of pilsner last fall that I brewed in 1994 and is was still good, it didn't taste like it did after i brewed it but still good.

 
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