Originally Posted by tomman
Wouldnt going over 3 weeks in the primary start to introduce off flavors? I thought that it was widely agreed upon that you shouldn't go over 3.
The only thing that is ever widely agreed upon is that beer can be made in all manner of ways.
The risk for keeping in Primary more than 3 weeks is to Autolysis and that process is not widely understood nor is there any hard and fast data as to when it happens. HB'ers tend to err on the side of caution and most of what we do is based on commercial practice.
"If" I were brewing 40bbl at a time, heck no I wouldn't leave anything in primary for more than 3 weeks but, considering that we are brewing a 1/6th of a bbl at the least is a different situation all together.
I have left beer in Primary for 6 weeks and had no sign of Autolysis but do not recommend this as a practice.
Just remember, "... aren't really laws, they're more like guidelines.."
My personal practice is 3 weeks Primary (Ales and Lagers) and then straight to a keg for conditioning. Regardless of style. Of course, it helps if you have kegs and a stock of beer.