Fermenting sour and wild ales outside

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exaideum

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Hello Beer-internet!

So I'm running low on space inside my small house and I'm considering building a small air-tight unit on the side of my house to hold all of my smaller 1-5 gal fermenters that are housing long aging sours.

Is that a terrible idea? I've only been making sours for a little while now and so I'm not sure how it'd affect everything.
 

mashpaddled

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What temperatures will the addition run? That's your big issue. Those small vessels, especially 1-3 gallons, will fluctuate significantly over the course of the year as the seasons change.

There's a lot to consider, such as how exterior materials might insulate the aging beer from weather or whether you need to build in temperature control. Personally I would plan on wiring it for electricity to run portable air conditioning and heating. I'd also insulate the walls as thickly as possible and build the roof with a small ventilated attic to keep summer heat out. I'd also add vapor barrier if your climate dries out in the summer to slow evaporation of airlocks and barrels (if you have or plan to get any).
 
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exaideum

exaideum

Brown Man Loves Beer
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What temperatures will the addition run? That's your big issue. Those small vessels, especially 1-3 gallons, will fluctuate significantly over the course of the year as the seasons change.

There's a lot to consider, such as how exterior materials might insulate the aging beer from weather or whether you need to build in temperature control. Personally I would plan on wiring it for electricity to run portable air conditioning and heating. I'd also insulate the walls as thickly as possible and build the roof with a small ventilated attic to keep summer heat out. I'd also add vapor barrier if your climate dries out in the summer to slow evaporation of airlocks and barrels (if you have or plan to get any).
That's the thing. I'm interested in what would happen if I built a small enclosure outside, obviously sealed from the elements but without much temp control, and let the sours age for long periods of time. Would it have a negative effect?
 

mashpaddled

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That's the thing. I'm interested in what would happen if I built a small enclosure outside, obviously sealed from the elements but without much temp control, and let the sours age for long periods of time. Would it have a negative effect?
Depends a lot on your climate and the microclimate in the side room. The beer gets too cold it will cause the yeast and bacteria to slow down. The beer might freeze. Let the beer get too hot and you can end up with undesirable off flavors. If the temperature swings considerably over the course of a day you might effectively cold crash the beer and knock everything out and prematurely stop fermentation. If you fermented in full size wine barrels it wouldn't be such an issue but smaller volumes are more sensitive to temperature swings.
 
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