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2 week cold crash?

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mcodville

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Would there be any problem with cold crashing a carboy for 2 weeks? I recently brewed a centennial blonde all grain, and I am leaving for Aruba for 2 weeks on Tuesday. By the time I leave fermentation will be more than complete, is there any reason I can't throw it in the fridge for 2 weeks while I'm gone?
 

antony

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don't see a problem with it, just be sure you're aware of airlock suck back...I usually use vodka in the airlock for long cold crashes rather than starsan.
 

GrogNerd

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Recently did a 2 week cold crash on a Fresh Squeezed clone, worked fine except I think it undid any flavor or aroma I got out of the prior dry hop

Only a week in bottles, will know for sure next week
 

IslandLizard

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I don't see any problem with extended cold crashes.
You could use an S-shape airlock with the minimum amount of Starsan in it to prevent suck back, or take the shuttle out of the 3-piece and cover the top with Al foil.

Now at bottling time I would add some fresh yeast (any kind) to make sure it will prime.
 

bransona

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If you haven't opened your fermenter at all, keep in mind that some of your CO2 blanket will dissolve back into solution, so you may need less priming sugar.
 

zachattack

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I do a 2-6 month cold crash routinely. I just do it in a keg in my keezer :p
 

Oginme

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I've had to do an extended (13 to 20 days) stay in the fridge with a couple of my starters in the pasts. Usually, when I know that I will not have time to make a starter coming up to brew day. I usually overbuild by 50 billion cells or so and they have worked just fine.

Of course, the few times when I have had to put off a brew day and my standard starters have been made, they've worked well also.
 

TasunkaWitko

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Any news on how this turned out? I have three 1-gallon batches that I put in to cold crash 2 weeks ago. Life got in the way and I wasn't able to bottle them.

I would prefer NOT to have to add yeast, unless absolutely necessary; however, if it is necessary, any recommendations on a procedure (amounts etc.) for three separate 1-gallon batches? I have a generic dry yeast at my disposal.

Thank you -

Ron
 

TasunkaWitko

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Bumping once - unless I hear otherwise, I'll try it this weekend and report on results.
 

petrolSpice

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I cold crashed a DIPA for 10 days (normally I shoot for 3-4 days) with gelatin and it is having a very hard time carbonating in the bottles. It's getting there, but it's been 5 weeks and it's maybe 30% carbonated. It went into the bottles VERY clear. It could just be the highly flocculating yeast as well.
 

TasunkaWitko

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Hi, petrolSpice, and thanks for the reply. It sounds like things will be fine. I tend to give my beers a pretty fair amount of time to carbonate and condition, and all three of these beers actually do pretty well with relatively low-to-medium carbonation.

In the end, I'd rather go that route than try to figure out how much yeast I should be adding, or if there were any complications in adding too much, etc. With this in mind, I'll probably go ahead and bottle as planned, without adding any yeast.
 

Cavpilot2000

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The only problems (all of which can be avoided with proper planning) are:

1. Suck back. This is an issue with any cold crash, not just long ones. Avoid it by switching to an S-shaped one-piece airlock. Also, using vodka instead of water or star-san works, but vodka evaporates faster than the other two, possibly leaving you with:

2. Airlock drying out. This is an issue with any extended aging process, and is exacerbated during long cold crashes because the relative humidity of the fridge/freezer is so low that evaporation happens faster. S-shaped airlocks dry out more slowly that 3-piece, so that helps. Also, vodka evaporates faster than water or Star-san solution, so again, this can be avoided with a classic S-shaped airlock and water or Star-san.

3. Slow bottle conditioning. Cold crashing is not an issue if you keg and force-carbonate, but if you are bottling, one might ask why you are cold crashing. By cold crashing (and even worse if you are cold crashing and adding finings like gelatin), you are taking the bulk of the suspended yeast out of solution. So if you want to bottle condition, the small amount of yeast left in the beer will take longer to revive from dormancy, begin eating, reproducing, and converting the sugar to CO2. Which make s me ask "Why are you cold crashing?" It is a completely unnecessarily step except for aesthetic purposes, and to a lesser degree, long-term stability (my beers rarely last more than 2 months, so I never worry about long term stability).

IMHO, if you are bottle conditioning, you are only complicating your life and brewing process by cold crashing and/or adding finings. And again, the only real reason to do either is aesthetic - you want a clearer beer. But ask yourself who cares if you have a little haze in your beer? it doesn't affect flavor.

So, long story short: an extended cold crash won't hurt a thing as long as you A: don't suck back anything you don't want in your beer; B: don't let your airlock dry out, or C: don't plan on bottle conditioning.
 

Cavpilot2000

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I cold crash and gelatin fine all the time, even when I'm bottling. Never had an issue.
Don't get me wrong - I'm not saying it doesn't work, but especially with an extended cold crash, it will just take longer to bottle condition. If you're in a hurry for your beer, it's an unnecessary delay.

Then again, I don't bottle anymore, and am an advocate of kegging, so by all means, do what works. That's the beauty of homebrewing - everybody does it a little differently.

But to my point, unless I am going for a starkly clear (usually German style) lager, I couldn't care less if there is some haze or yeast cloudiness. All that suspended stuff is part of the beer and hurts nothing but the aesthetics, and even then, only to the people who care about crystal clear beer (and there are many - to each his own).
 

TasunkaWitko

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Hi, guys, and many thanks for the continued discussion - I am learning a lot, which is always good!

I can't speak for the originator of the thread, but for me, the timing is mostly a result of things getting away from me. I put them in on a Thursday, and intended to bottle them Saturday or Sunday, but it's been ridiculously ridiculous around the house, and I just didn't get it done. Two or so weeks later...here I am....

As for why, my primary reason is to compact the sediment, because I tend to have too much in the bottom of my bottles - not just the usual smudge, but an actual cake of it. Clarity is not a terribly big priority to me, for the same reasons that cavpilot mentioned; this is especially true with these three beers that are currently cold-crashing: two of them are porters and the third is 40% wheat, so I am not concerned about clarity.

If I do decide to add a little yeast, would anyone have any suggestions as to how to go about it? My instinct would be to simply re-hydrate a packet of yeast (it is a generic brewing yeast, about half the size of a Safale packet) in a cup of distilled or spring water and add a spoonful to each batch in the bottling bucket. This should, in my thinking, provide enough yeast to get carbonation going well. If I am wrong, please let me know.

Thanks again, and please keep the replies coming.
 

Decimotox

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Hi, guys, and many thanks for the continued discussion - I am learning a lot, which is always good!

I can't speak for the originator of the thread, but for me, the timing is mostly a result of things getting away from me. I put them in on a Thursday, and intended to bottle them Saturday or Sunday, but it's been ridiculously ridiculous around the house, and I just didn't get it done. Two or so weeks later...here I am....

As for why, my primary reason is to compact the sediment, because I tend to have too much in the bottom of my bottles - not just the usual smudge, but an actual cake of it. Clarity is not a terribly big priority to me, for the same reasons that cavpilot mentioned; this is especially true with these three beers that are currently cold-crashing: two of them are porters and the third is 40% wheat, so I am not concerned about clarity.

If I do decide to add a little yeast, would anyone have any suggestions as to how to go about it? My instinct would be to simply re-hydrate a packet of yeast (it is a generic brewing yeast, about half the size of a Safale packet) in a cup of distilled or spring water and add a spoonful to each batch in the bottling bucket. This should, in my thinking, provide enough yeast to get carbonation going well. If I am wrong, please let me know.

Thanks again, and please keep the replies coming.
I'd recommend using some cask/bottle conditioning yeast if you can get your hands on it. Danstar makes some. It's made specifically for casks or bottle conditioning. Usually, though, it's 2 grams of dried yeast per 5 gallons. General rule of thumb.
 

Sadu

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Compacting sediment is one of the reasons for me to. I give away a lot of beer and people grab the bottle and wave it around then drive home and drink it straight away. Anything I can do to reduce sediment makes the beer more presentable, even after a bad pour.
 

YellowRiver

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Ive cold crashed longer than expected and yes the bottle carbing takes a bit more time. I usually try to use my ferm chamber to keep bottles at 71+ degrees to speed up the process. Below 70 takes longer, so winter basement temps are too cold. temp management crucial to the time it takes for bottles to carb.

Ive also let the batch sit at room/basement temp for an extra couple weeks and then cold crash when ready to bottle with zero bad results. I think that's a better option. The s-type airlock will not dry out in two weeks unless extremely warm.

Both methods lighten the effects of dryhopping. Bottle carbing in general does reduce some dryhopping effects, as does my refusal to spend lots of extra dollars on hops .
 
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