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Old 11-30-2009, 04:39 AM   #1
OHIOSTEVE
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at what point are you no longer bottle conditioning and just saving? I know each beer is different but a normal lower gravity ale.. Not a big beer. Once it is sufficiently carbed and drinkable , will keeping it a few months benefit it? OR am I being silly to stick half back from all 4 batches for a few months down the road? BTW my buddy who is a dedicated BUD LIGHT GUY drank a couple of my centenniel blonds and declared em " PRETTY DAMNED GOOD" last night.
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Old 11-30-2009, 05:03 AM   #2
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For normal size beers, I tend to think 2-3 months after bottling helps, but I'm not sure about 5-6 months. Depending on how careful you were, oxidation can kick in after a while.

 
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Old 11-30-2009, 05:10 AM   #3
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Why not try it out yourself with an experiment? I brewed an Irish ale earlier this fall and tried a bottle after 10 days, then after about 25 days, and there was quite a big difference. If you try your beers at different stages in the process you can get a feel for how long it takes to reach optimum taste. If you do try it post what you find!

 
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Old 11-30-2009, 05:14 AM   #4
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what sucks is when you pull a pint. then another. and another. then you go back for one more 'cus you don't have to work for 10 more hours and the last pint tastes like butt. i mean it turned in a matter of an hour from the best to the worst and there was still 1.5 gallons in the keg. sorta like 2 strokes... they run thir absolute best... right before the pistons seize or the bottome end lets go.

 
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Old 11-30-2009, 03:17 PM   #5
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Smaller beers will peak in 2-4 months. Highly hopped beers don't age well because the aroma fades.
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Old 11-30-2009, 03:35 PM   #6
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Except for hefe's and Ipas, it's all going to depend on the beer, mostly the gravity and grainbill. Some beers don't even peak for a year.

Someone, I think Flyangler once said the rule of thumb is something like 1 extra week after 3 for every 10 gravity points above 1.060. That's a rough gestimate of when it will carb, and maybe condition, but many beer hit carb, but still need more time to condition.

But remember, a rule of thumb is just a rough guestimate, not a fact, there are way too many factors that come into play to try to pin down EXACTLY when a beer will be ready.

Like I'm sure you read, my 1.090 Belgian didn't carb for 3 months, but 6 months later it is drinkable but could even mellow some more.

And remember taste is subjective....there are plenty of folks who brew who drink green beer because their overly simplistic kit instructions said to drink it in a week, and they THINK that's how homebrew is supposed to taste, and their beer is gone before it ever stops tasting green....There's also I am sure, plenty of "EX" homebrewers, who brewed a batch or two of beer based on those directions, tasted the beer green and dumped it out, and went back to buying, without reading one book or forum post or podcast where they heard about waiting. So they now equate green beer with "homebrew taste" and will nevr touch it again.

Lazy llama came up with this handy chart to determine how long something needs.



The thing is, questions like this usually are brought up by newer brewers. When you have a pipeline, you are used to having beers at different stages of the process, and there will be plenty of beer to be drunk in the x number of months it may take that higer grav beer to be ready to drink.

Here's an old discussion that might give you some insight. I had found in the back of my fridge a bottle of homebrew that had been in there for 3 months.

Quote:
Originally Posted by captianoats View Post
How did you manage to keep a delicious chilled beer for 3 months? I'm lucky to keep a six pack cold for 3 weeks without downing them all.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Revvy
It's called having a pipeline, beers at different levels of readiness. With a pipleine and a full fridge with many choices it is easy to not have a taste for a certain beer for a while, or just not grab it from the back..this was something I wrote a few months ago, it sums up my pipeline at the time....


I leave 99% of my beers in primary for a month...then I bottle...and right now I can't get 70 degrees in my loft to save my life...so I don't expect ANY of my beers to be carbed on time....so in the interim, I buy mix sixers of various beers to try as research for the next beers I plan on brewing and to build up my bottle stock.

For Example, I brewed my Pumpkin Ale for Thanksgiving on Labor Day...figuring at 8 weeks, I MIGHT have some ready for Holloween...But they were still green, so I only brought a couple to my annuual Halloween thingy, along with a sampler of commercial pumpkins...BUT come Turkey Day the beer was fantastic, and was a hit at the holiday.

Right now this is my current inventory...

Drinking....IPA, various bottles of Oaked Smoked Brown Ale, Smoked brown ale, Poor Richard's Ale, Biermuncher's Centennial Blonde (but as a Lager,)
Avoiding....Marris Otter/Argentinian Cascade SMaSH (It sucks)
Bottle Conditioning..... Chocolate Mole Porter, Belgian Dark Strong Ale, Peach Mead
In Primary.....Schwartzbier, Vienna Lager
Bulk Aging....Mead
Lagering....Dead Guy Clone Lager

Pretty much anything still in Primary or Lagering I will not be drinking til the end of March, but more than likely April....The Mole Porter needs a minimum several more weeks as well....but the Belgian Strong is prolly going to need 3-6 months to be ready...

The Swartzbier has 3 weeks more in primary, then another month lagering, THEN 3 weeks at least in the bottles...

Some weeks I take a break from my own beers to drink a couple sixers of samplers, so I don't drink ALL my current and other ready beers before the others comes online....Plus I'm craving a couple of styles that I don't have ready (like Vienna Lager) so I will make a bottle run....I also get to try new styles to come up with new ones to brew down the line.

And I'm also probably going to brew something this weekend...don't know what yet...maybe a low abv mild that I would only leave in primary till fermentation is stopped then bottled..so hopefully in a month they will drinkable.....

But do you see...you too one day will have a pipleine....and the wait will be nothing...you will have things at various stages...

This quote from one of my friends sums it up....

Quote:
Originally Posted by dontman View Post

The nice thing is to get to a point in your pipeline where you are glancing through your BeerSmith brew log and realize that you have a beer that you have not even tried yet and it has been in bottle over 6 weeks. This happened to me this weekend. The beer was farging delicious.
With experience you'll come to know when to even bother testing your first bottle, and with a pipeline, it won't matter.


Hope this helps...
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Old 11-30-2009, 03:40 PM   #7
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The longer the better for the most part.

Even a crappy beer will be better 1 month later.

 
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Old 12-01-2009, 12:12 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Revvy View Post
Except for hefe's and Ipas, it's all going to depend on the beer, mostly the gravity and grainbill. Some beers don't even peak for a year.

<snip>

With experience you'll come to know when to even bother testing your first bottle, and with a pipeline, it won't matter.


Hope this helps...
Revvy, you need a "pipeline thread," to go along with the "Bottling Thread" and "Ugly Junk" thread. I'm serious; a pipeline is just as much a tool of the homebrewer as a hydrometer or a wort chiller. As The Bard said, in another context, "-ripeness is all."
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Old 12-01-2009, 12:19 AM   #9
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To be at a point where I'm looking over my log and I find a beer that I forgot about (because I have many others) -- wow, I'm looking forward to this!

 
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Old 12-01-2009, 12:24 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Revvy View Post
<snip>
Hope this helps...
Revvy, you Dawg, how do you get all of these indented quuotes? Not that I'll eever need them...

 
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