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Old 12-21-2005, 03:55 AM   #1
Dewey Oxburger
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Nov 2005
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I'm thinking of dry hopping for the first time, but I'm wondering if I should bother. The only hops I have on hand are pellet hops. I was thinking of wrapping them up in a cheescloth sack with a couple of marbles and dropping them in the secondary fermenter. However, from what I've been reading, it seems like you should always use whole hops when dry hopping. Is it worth bothering with pellet hops, or should I just skip this step?

Also, I'm curious about sanitation when dry hopping - it seems strange that I've been obsessing about sanitation at every step of the brewing process, and yet I'm planning on taking hops directly from my refrigerator and dropping them into my beer. I am missing something here?

Thanks!

 
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Old 12-21-2005, 05:29 AM   #2
KSBrewer
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Dec 2005
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The idea of dry hopping is to impart aroma which you will get with pellet or whole hops. What the difference will be is when you attempt to transfer the liquid to kegs or bottles. I have always just dumped them into the fermenter after active fermentation has slowed. My transfer method was always a racking cane with the plastic tip on the end. Sometimes dryhopping can be a hassle due to the broken pellets or whole hops cloging your racking tube. I have tried putting a cheese cloth on the end of the tube to act as a filter which works OK. If you do a good job of sanitation up front and have healthy yeast dry hopping is little concern since you have enough alcohol present to kill any nasties. I think the benefits far outweigh the concerns so give dry hopping a try.

 
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Old 12-21-2005, 04:10 PM   #3
david_42
 
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I haven't had any trouble with dry hopping and contamination. I just toss them in, no bag. Pellets work ok. I'd sanitize the bag and marbles, though. Some people like to dip the hops in vodka, I guess you could bag the pellets and soak the whole assembly in 1/2 cup of 80 proof. Then add the whole thing to your secondary.
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Old 12-21-2005, 05:14 PM   #4

Whole or pellet, I just dump them into my secondary. Never had a problem; by that time, the alcohol as been produced and contamination, IMO, is not a concern. Pellets, I dump on top of the beer after siphoning. Whole, I dump in the seconday first, the siphon onto the hops.

 
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Old 12-21-2005, 09:35 PM   #5
DeRoux's Broux
 
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i second rhoobarb. no worries. just add whole/pellet hops into the secondary, then rack on top of them. they'll settle out when your ready to bottle/keg.
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Old 12-21-2005, 11:50 PM   #6
Dewey Oxburger
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I think I'll just go ahead and add the pellets without the bag as I transfer to the secondary. Thanks for all the advice!

 
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Old 12-22-2005, 01:21 AM   #7
Tony
 
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Go for it, if anything, you will successfully dry hop, as well as see how pellets work for dry hopping. Keep us up to date!
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Old 12-22-2005, 01:37 AM   #8
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I boil some water then let the pellets soak in that for a while to help extract the flavor oils and then dump it all into the carboy.

Less for sanitation than for flavor.
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Old 12-22-2005, 11:00 PM   #9
Shambolic
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Denny's Brew
I boil some water then let the pellets soak in that for a while to help extract the flavor oils and then dump it all into the carboy.

Less for sanitation than for flavor.
I do this too; it's supposed to improve the solubility of the 'goodies' in the hops.

I also dry hop in my primary, not my secondary. It still has a wonderful effect, and you leave any particulate stuff behind when you rack to the secondary - it's already done its job anyway.
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Old 12-23-2005, 01:26 AM   #10
Blaine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DeRoux's Broux
i second rhoobarb. no worries. just add whole/pellet hops into the secondary, then rack on top of them. they'll settle out when your ready to bottle/keg.
Sorry if this is a dumb question but I think I must be missing something!
Are you saying you hop your secondary and then rack to a carboy or someting and then bottle or do you just mean you hop your secondary and use a racking cane to bottle with?

It just seems like Shambolics way is much easier to achieve the same result.
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