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Old 08-29-2008, 01:05 PM   #11
JustDave
 
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I agree, I don't bottle in 10 days either.

But you can't make a blanket statement that no beer can be bottled in 10 days without knowing what the person is brewing. What if they bought a mild kit?

 
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Old 08-29-2008, 01:27 PM   #12
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I have recently started leaving my brews in the primary for 2 weeks minimum, 3 weeks for a standard brew. I haven't been doing it long enough to really be able to speak on the results, though.

What I can say is I hate how kit instructions would have everyone use 5oz of priming sugar in every 5 gallon batch of beer no matter what. Doesn't matter if the beer is 60F at bottling and it's an ordinary bitter. 5oz. I think that's such a crime.
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Old 08-29-2008, 01:37 PM   #13

Quote:
What I can say is I hate how kit instructions would have everyone use 5oz of priming sugar in every 5 gallon batch of beer no matter what. Doesn't matter if the beer is 60F at bottling and it's an ordinary bitter. 5oz. I think that's such a crime.
Yep I tend to buy my dextrose in bulk, so I can precisely control exactly how much priming sugar makes it into my beer according to style on those occasions when I still bottle.

 
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Old 08-29-2008, 02:02 PM   #14
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What those instruction usually leave out is the use of a hydrometer to PROVE that fermentation has indeed stopped in 7-10 days.

As most of us now realize, if fermentation can sometimes take 3 days to even begin, there is a high likely hood that it is not really done on the 7th day (come one we KNOW that the inexperience brewer will read 7-10 days and do it on the 7th, I did my first time, it's human nature.)

The kit and kilo or basic kit manufacturers are banking on the fact that they only have a limited window of sales to an individual before he/she moves on to the next step of brewing, either trying recipes in books or online, or going all grain. So the bank on 2-3 sales per new brewer before they discover how to brew beer better.

Also as you ALL know, as you became more experienced, this is a hobby about patience, but in this quick trunover society retailers know that something that takes time, would be less popular than something with a quick turn around time...So they know that even though the beer would be better if they told the n00b to wait even a week further, they want to make this hobby as "pain free" as possible....

They're not technically lying, IF the yeast takes hold within a few hours and finishes in a week, you can bottle a lower to moderate gravity beer in 10 days, as Orfy's 10 for 10 milds proves. They just leave off the fact that waiting even a week more makes for better beer.

If you've noticed, it's mostly the kit and kilo, brew in a bag or mr beer type kits that say to do it quickly. The better kit manufacturers usually tell you to wait, as well as suggest to use a hydrometer. I've noticed the the Norther Brewer Catalog gives the most accurate range of their beers based on gravity and style. They will say, for example, "primary for 14 days, secondary 3-6 months, bottle condition another 6" for a higer grav beer.
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Old 08-29-2008, 02:07 PM   #15
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JustDave.

Don't forget that this is aimed at inexperienced brewers who don't know better or are unable to judge when (if) it is correct.

I believe blanket statements are better than overcomplicated statements in this situation.
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Old 08-29-2008, 03:41 PM   #16
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I think a lot of people panic to bottle at <x> days because they are scared of sanitation or autolysis issues.

I just leave mine till I have time to bottle. I stressed my yeast out on my last batch but left it in the fermenter for 3 weeks I think - had no off flavors. I firmly believe leaving it in the fermenter for 2-3 weeks actually improves the beer.

 
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Old 08-29-2008, 04:11 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by neilb View Post
I think a lot of people panic to bottle at <x> days because they are scared of sanitation or autolysis issues.

I just leave mine till I have time to bottle. I stressed my yeast out on my last batch but left it in the fermenter for 3 weeks I think - had no off flavors. I firmly believe leaving it in the fermenter for 2-3 weeks actually improves the beer.
Autolysis is a bugaboo for the homebrewer, most people who quote it get it from Plamer and they fail to notice 2 things, it is talked about it the LAGER section and they don't miss the last paragraph.

Quote:
As a final note on this subject, I should mention that by brewing with healthy yeast in a well-prepared wort, many experienced brewers, myself included, have been able to leave a beer in the primary fermenter for several months without any evidence of autolysis....

this is one of those myths that will never get dispelled...

Palmer also says this...

Quote:
The fermentation of malt sugars into beer is a complicated biochemical process. It is more than just the conversion of sugar to alcohol, which can be regarded as the primary activity. Total fermentation is better defined as three phases, the Adaptation or Lagtime phase, the Primary or Attenuative phase and a Secondary or Conditioning phase. The yeast do not end Phase 2 before beginning Phase 3, the processes occur in parallel, but the conditioning processes occur more slowly. As the majority of simple sugars are consumed, more and more of the yeast will transition to eating the larger, more complex sugars and early yeast by-products. This is why beer (and wine) improves with age to a degree, as long as they are on the yeast. Beer that has been filtered or pasteurized will not benefit from aging.
Great reading on the phases of fermentation here: http://www.howtobrew.com/section1/chapter8-2-2.html

oh, and one more passage from the same book:

Quote:
The conditioning process is a function of the yeast. The vigorous, primary stage is over, the majority of the wort sugars have been converted to alcohol, and a lot of the yeast are going dormant; but there is still yeast activity. During the earlier phases, many different compounds were produced by the yeast in addition to ethanol and CO2, e.g., acetaldehyde, esters, amino acids, ketones- diacetyl, pentanedione, dimethyl sulfide, etc. Once the easy food is gone, the yeast start re-processing these by-products. Diacetyl and pentanedione are two ketones that have buttery and honey-like flavors. These compounds are considered flaws when present in large amounts and can cause flavor stability problems during storage. Acetaldehyde is an aldehyde that has a pronounced green apple smell and taste. It is an intermediate compound in the production of ethanol. The yeast reduce these compounds during the later stages of fermentation.

The yeast also produce an array of fusel alcohols during primary fermentation in addition to ethanol. Fusels are higher molecular weight alcohols that often give harsh solvent-like tastes to beer. During secondary fermentation, the yeast convert these alcohols to more pleasant tasting fruity esters. Warmer temperatures encourage ester production.
That's why I leave mine in primary for a month.
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Old 08-29-2008, 04:19 PM   #18
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It used to be that 1-2-3 was the (beginning) homebrewer's mantra.

Still seems like it should trump any ridiculous instructions.

 
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Old 08-29-2008, 04:37 PM   #19
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I must say i have only brewed once, with the help of a friend that did brew before, we used a kit from Northern Brewer for a Belgian White Ale, I left it in my primary for about...2.5 weeks then put it into a secondary for about 2 weeks, and finished with bottling.

Overall....my first beer turned out great. a bit darker than a Belgian white, but amazing whit great flavor and aroma. It has a 12% alcohol content per the reading my buddy did to help me figure it out.

just my 2 cents

 
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Old 08-29-2008, 06:39 PM   #20
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Quote:
kit instructions would have everyone use 5oz of priming sugar in every 5 gallon batch of beer no matter what
Yea - I contacted AHBS about this because every kit had 4.5 oz and they said it was a default. 4.5oz = $0.79. 1lb = 1.79 so it makes sense to buy it in bulk and save a $1 a pound.
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