I just never had gleaned anything substantive from that. Despite the rationalization that many new brewer say is for 'educational purposes' I find there's very little to be gleaned tasting a beer at 1 week, and again at 2....that to me just means there 2 less beers that are actually tasting good and are ready at the end. I don't buy budweiser because I don't like to taste "bad" beer. So why would I drink my own beer when it was "bad" especially since I know it's going to be delicious a few weeks later.
It's a great rationalization, and I hear it every time I make my assertion. But the thing to remember is that since every beer is different that 5 day old Ipa you may have decided to crack open is not going to taste anything like that 5 day old brown ale you opened early in your next batch. They're two different animals. There are so many tiny variations in things like ambient temp at fermentation and carbonation, pitch count phases of the moon, that even if you brewed your same batch again and cracked a bottle at the exact same early time on the previous batch, the beer, if you could remember how it tasted, more than likely wouldn't taste the same at that phase....Heck even in the same batch if you had grabbed a different bottle it may seem carbed or tasting differently at that point.
A tiny difference in temps between bottles in storage can affect the yeasties, speed them up or slow them down. Like if you store them in a closet against a warm wall, the beers closest to the heat source may be a tad warmer than those further way, so thy may carb/condition at slightly different rates. I usually store a batch in 2 seperate locations in my loft 1 case in my bedroom which is a little warmer, and the other in the closet in the lving room, which being in a larger space is a tad cooler, at least according to the thermostat next to that closet. It can be 5-10 degrees warmer in my bedroom. So I usually start with that case at three weeks. Giving the other half a little more time. Each one is it's own little microcosm, and although generally the should come up at the same time, it's not an automatic switch, and they all pop on. They are all going to come to tempo when their time is right...not a minute before, and then at some point they all will be done.
So you're not, to me learning anything special from it. But It's your beer, but there's not gonna be anything right or wrong at that point, except that you're out a beer that 2-3 weeks later you're gonna post something like"Sigh, they always say that last beer of the batch is the best, now if only I hadn't "sampled for educational purposes" all those weeks back I could be having another on of these delicious beers."
What you haven't told me is the time and temp of your carbing...those are the two most important factors,followed by gravity.
The 3 weeks at 70 degrees
, that we recommend is the minimum
time it takes for average gravity beers to carbonate and condition. Higher grav beers take longer.
Stouts and porters have taken me between 6 and 8 weeks to carb up..I have a 1.090 Belgian strong that took three months to carb up.
Temp and gravity are the two factors that contribute to the time it takes to carb beer. But if a beer's not ready yet, or seems low carbed, and you added the right amount of sugar to it, then it's not stalled, it's just not time yet.
Everything you need to know about carbing and conditioning, can be found here Of Patience and Bottle Conditioning.
With emphasis on the word, "patience."
as Poindexer's video in my blong does show, a lot of "activity" often occurs in the one week or even 2 week mark...it may be "fizzy" but fizzy and a fully set carb are not the same thing, and a lot of brewers just equate a pop and his with a beer being drinkable, when the bubbles and head proteins don't tend to come up fully for a few more weeks. (I usually call that "newb carb" and find that a lot of new brewers who tend to kill their two cases off in a few days, don't experience true carbonation and the pleasures thereof, until they actually get a pipeline going, and have their first 5 or 6 week old full carbed and conditioned wonderfully little puppy! Then the come back with an "aha" moment.
Like he shows in 1 week, all the hissing, all the foaming can and does happen, but until it's dissolved back into the beer, your don't really have carbonation, with tiny bubbles coming out of solution happening actually inside the glass, not JUST what's happening on the surface.
To me all you're doing is wasting a beer that will be excellent when your beer is ACTUALLY carbed and conditioned...
There's an old saying, the best beer in a batch is the last one...
But it's you're beer after all.
Do whatever floats your boat. [i]But just DON'T start a "My Beer is flat, or tastes like A$$, what's wrong?" thread.