After months of reading and talking about it, I'll be able to brew my own beer later this month (birthday= brewing equipment). I've brewed about 15 times with several different folks, but never with my own stuff. I've been able to find answers to most of my questions here, but one thing in particular remains a little unclear to me. For bigger beers that require some aging, does the amount of time in the secondary need to increase, or just the bottle conditioning?
I'm a grad student with conferences and weddings scattered throughout the fall, so I need to plan my brew days in advance, but I don't want to compromise the quality of my beer by shortchanging the secondary. My wife loves porter, so I want to brew a fairly big one for her, while also brewing a batch or two that will be ready to drink sooner.
As an aside, I'm glad to have found this forum before I started brewing on my own. My general understanding of brewing has filled out, with anecdotal evidence and practical suggestions to go along with what I learned from books. I'm going into this with a lot more confidence, and will enjoy it more since I won't be as unsure of myself. Also, I've got plenty of recipes socked away from this site, waiting to be brewed.