Dry Hopping/Secondary/Cold crashing question

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Brocster

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Hi all!


SWMBO is beginning to turn from a person who was amused and annoyed by my return to the hobby to someone who is really liking both the process and the beer. Woooohoooo!!!! :ban: She has always been a microbrew fan with a gret palate, and is now enjoying what we turn out at home. Still, I want this beer to be as good as possible since it is her favorite style and one of here favorite beers. Given that:

I have a question on the timing of beer in the secondary given some of the following:

- ESB (my formulation of Sierra Nevada's ESB)
- PM technique with 1.051 OG (spot on to target)
- generous pitching
- 8 days in primary at 66
- racked to secondary - gravity 1.010
- dry hopped with pellets (1 oz Kent Goldings) day two in secondary.

I will be moving to a keg and force carbing versus botteling. This is different than the Sierra Nevada technique, but that is ok.

My question is around cold crashing the secondary. I was thinking that around day 10 in the secondary, I could cold crash for 5 days, then keg. I have a stairway that leads from the basement to the garage, and living in MN, the temp is about 45 degrees at that spot.

Is that too soon? Should I leave at 66 in the secondary longer? I am not too worried about clarity (it would be nice), but more about taste, especially since SWMBO is the target audience. I just am not sure of the balance I need in regards to dry hopping versus conditioning. In hindsight, I should not have dry-hopped as early as I did, but too late for that.

Thoughts?

Thanks!!
 

beerthirty

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The secondary(bright tank) is used for clearing and bulk aging, no fermentation occurs there. The remaining yeast will clean up after themselves at this time also. Since you dryhopped in the secondary early, then your timing is about right for removal. Many say that leaving the beer on the hops to long will develop off flavors.
 

calpyro

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Hi all!


SWMBO is beginning to turn from a person who was amused and annoyed by my return to the hobby to someone who is really liking both the process and the beer. Woooohoooo!!!! :ban: She has always been a microbrew fan with a gret palate, and is now enjoying what we turn out at home. Still, I want this beer to be as good as possible since it is her favorite style and one of here favorite beers. Given that:

I have a question on the timing of beer in the secondary given some of the following:

- ESB (my formulation of Sierra Nevada's ESB)
- PM technique with 1.051 OG (spot on to target)
- generous pitching
- 8 days in primary at 66
- racked to secondary - gravity 1.010
- dry hopped with pellets (1 oz Kent Goldings) day two in secondary.

I will be moving to a keg and force carbing versus botteling. This is different than the Sierra Nevada technique, but that is ok.

My question is around cold crashing the secondary. I was thinking that around day 10 in the secondary, I could cold crash for 5 days, then keg. I have a stairway that leads from the basement to the garage, and living in MN, the temp is about 45 degrees at that spot.

Is that too soon? Should I leave at 66 in the secondary longer? I am not too worried about clarity (it would be nice), but more about taste, especially since SWMBO is the target audience. I just am not sure of the balance I need in regards to dry hopping versus conditioning. In hindsight, I should not have dry-hopped as early as I did, but too late for that.

Thoughts?

Thanks!!


I have adopted the Russian River Dry Hopping technique with pretty good results. You may find it helpful in your process.

In short, let fermentation run 10-14 days (I don't do secondary) and crash the fermenter for three days to 34 degrees to drop the yeast.

Then when all of the yeast is out of suspension and won't interfere with the dry hopping, I rack to a clean keg with a Sure Screen filter on the pick-up tube: Search Results

Then I add my dry-hops to the keg and allow the beer to warm up to cellar temperature for 14 days. BTW, I like to use whole hops for dry-hopping so they don't clog the screen.

To avoid the chance of oxidation, I generally put the hops in first and shake the hops around a couple of times and purge with CO2. During the 14 day dry-hop, I generally agitate the keg daily to improve the hop utilization and mix them up a little.

Now my process goes one of two ways. If the beer taste great and I am going to use it right away, I just put the keg in the fridge, carbonate and dispense with the hops still in the keg. The risk here is the hops will eventually give off tannins and the flavor will suffer. If I want the beer to last a long time, I transfer to a clean keg, add gelatin, and carbonate.
Hope it helps.
 

Yooper

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I'd rack off the dryhops (into the keg) after a week on the hops. Keep the keg at room temperature for a week or two. Then, move the keg to the cold place. That can even be the kegerator- I cold crash in my kegerator while the beer is carbing up- or in the cold stairwell.

That gives you the ability to get the beer off of the dryhops, and to condition a bit before chilling.
 

calpyro

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Listen to this pod cast by Vinnie Cilurzo on the Brewing Network:

The Brewing Network.com - :

It was recorded at the National Homebrew Competition in Baltimore and he did a lecture on dry-hopping. I found it to be really good information. When our home brew club toured his new brewery in March, he described his hopping technique almost verbatim from his lecture.
 

korndog

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I'd rack off the dryhops (into the keg) after a week on the hops. Keep the keg at room temperature for a week or two. Then, move the keg to the cold place. That can even be the kegerator- I cold crash in my kegerator while the beer is carbing up- or in the cold stairwell.

That gives you the ability to get the beer off of the dryhops, and to condition a bit before chilling.
+1 - I have reduced my dry hop times to 5-6 days as a matter of personal preference. I like to leave my beer alone (at ferm. temp.) after racking off hops until it tastes right; then crash and serve; or transfer.
 

Champurrado

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And what if I'll be bottling instead of kegging? Can I still crash, transfer to secondary and bottle without losing the ability to carbonate the final product?

Thanks.
 

korndog

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And what if I'll be bottling instead of kegging? Can I still crash, transfer to secondary and bottle without losing the ability to carbonate the final product?

Thanks.
I know bottlers who cold crash. I believe there is enough yeast left in suspension to do the job.
 

Champurrado

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Funny you should answer, Korndog. I'm making lakewalk for the first time and want to be sure I'm OK to dry hop in the secondary prior to bottling. I'm thinking 10 days primary fermentation, cold crash, then 5 days secondary with the dry hops. I'm thinking I'll bottle next, provided I hit my FG.
 
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