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RIS - bottle condition or bottle from keg?

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Sadu

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My first RIS hit it's first anniversary last week and I gave it a quality inspection. This thing was undrinkable at 3-6 months and so I left it alone, it's pretty damn decent now :ban:

I'm keen to brew another batch for next year. I can either pressure ferment and bottle from the keg, or just bottle condition.

Is there an advantage to bottle conditioning here? I'm pretty happy with my keg-bottled beers now, they come out super bright and tasty, but whether they stand the test of time is another story.

What does everyone else do for these long-age brews?
 

JonM

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I've done both and I guess if I had to pick one, I'd go with keg to bottle. I just like the certainty of carbonation which can be a slow process when bottle conditioning big beers.
 

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Go keg to bottle, it gives you more flexibility under any conditions. You can bottle batches at a time over a period of time. With going straight to the bottle, you have to do it all in one shot, which is not always the best option and time consuming
 

Revvy

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Bottle condition, don't go keg to bottle. Natually carb it with actual fresh yeast and sugar. There's somthing about bottle conditioned big beers that force carbing can't duplicate. If you want to make it easy to do, you could cask carb it in a keg with yeast and sugar for 3 weeks and then bottle from the keg. But personally with force carbing something like that you're losing out on another layer of flavor....
 

Dog House Brew

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Bottle condition, don't go keg to bottle. Natually carb it with actual fresh yeast and sugar. There's somthing about bottle conditioned big beers that force carbing just duplicate. If you want to make it easy to do, you could cask carb it in a keg with yeast and sugar for 3 weeks and then bottle from the keg. But personally with force carbing something like that you're losing out on another layer.

I just mix my priming sugar in the keg, then fill all the bottles w my beer gun. I agree that big beers are better served by being bottle conditioned. They are more shelf stable IMO.
 

Gravity

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Bottle condition, don't go keg to bottle. Natually carb it with actual fresh yeast and sugar. There's somthing about bottle conditioned big beers that force carbing just duplicate. If you want to make it easy to do, you could cask carb it in a keg with yeast and sugar for 3 weeks and then bottle from the keg. But personally with force carbing something like that you're losing out on another layer.
I changed my mind, I agree

I missed the RIS part

Do bottle :D
 

bwarbiany

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I'm not going to make a call on which is better. If I had a big beer like that, I'd go keg to bottle, but that's just me and that's primarily for convenience.

However, the one thing I would say is that with a beer that big, you ABSOLUTELY should make sure to add yeast if you bottle condition. That environment with the long storage time might have seriously affected the viability of the remaining yeast. Even adding yeast will probably kill most of them due to the alcohol content. But you'd most likely keep enough alive to do the job.
 
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Sadu

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Bottle condition, don't go keg to bottle. Natually carb it with actual fresh yeast and sugar. There's somthing about bottle conditioned big beers that force carbing can't duplicate.
This is the direction I'm leaning for sure.

I have REALLY enjoyed the keg-to-bottle brews I have done recently. Mostly pale lagers and session ales. Not having the yeast cake really makes a beer seem less like homebrew, given that my friends suck at pouring. And I like not being committed to doing the whole bottling session in one go.

But I do feel that the bottle conditioned beers have a nicer carbonation, and I find I can control the carbonation better with careful priming sugar measurements. This seems to be the opposite of what others find.

Cheers for the advice.
 

k1ngl1ves

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When I make a RIS, I prime the keg with sugar (usually about half of what you'd use to bottle carb) and bulk age in the keg in my basement. Pull a small sample every 3 months.

This way, if my carb level isn't what I was hoping for, I can slowly carb it up with co2 from a tank. Plus, there's almost no chance of tainting your long aging brew.

IMO, it's the best of both worlds!

The only downside is you can tie up a keg for a year or more. Just have reserve kegs!


Good luck! Fighting the temptation is the worst part of aging beer... :mug:
 
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Sadu

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When I make a RIS, I prime the keg with sugar (usually about half of what you'd use to bottle carb) and bulk age in the keg in my basement. Pull a small sample every 3 months.
I haven't tried naturally carbonating in the keg before but I hear people say the amount of priming sugar required is a lot less. Can't say I understand how that works!

I don't have spare kegs to do long term ageing so this won't be practical for me yet, but maybe one day.

What happens to the sludge at the bottom when you naturally carbonate in the keg? Do you get a super yeasty first pint or 2 then all good after that? Or do you generally need to transfer to a fresh keg for serving?
 

k1ngl1ves

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I haven't tried naturally carbonating in the keg before but I hear people say the amount of priming sugar required is a lot less. Can't say I understand how that works!

I don't have spare kegs to do long term ageing so this won't be practical for me yet, but maybe one day.

What happens to the sludge at the bottom when you naturally carbonate in the keg? Do you get a super yeasty first pint or 2 then all good after that? Or do you generally need to transfer to a fresh keg for serving?
I'm actually not sure why, in regards to using half the sugar as usual, but I'd assume that it's because there's a larger mass of yeast at the party. :mug:

Stop being cheap and buy another keg dammit! :ban:


The sludge at the bottom isn't bad. About half a pint the first pour, and then all good. If you move the keg around, the next pour will be minimal. Maybe a quarter pint. Nothing to be wary of. I'll waste about 3 pints in all my moving and prepping of the keg. I never notice...
 

Revvy

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Actually there's lots of debates on the amount of sugar to prime a keg with... I finally opted for the info I found on Brülosophy and used a calculator and went with the full amount called for for the style of beer I was doing. I did 5 gallons of my Kentucky Common naturally carbed for a friend's upcoming wedding where he's pulling it through a beer engine.
 

k1ngl1ves

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Actually there's lots of debates on the amount of sugar to prime a keg with... I finally opted for the info I found on Brülosophy and used a calculator and went with the full amount called for for the style of beer I was doing. I did 5 gallons of my Kentucky Common naturally carbed for a friend's upcoming wedding where he's pulling it through a beer engine.
^^^This is most likely very true.^^^

When I naturally carb in a keg, I'd rather shoot a bit low than over do it. I usually hook up the keg to serving pressure in my keggerator for a couple days anyways to make sure the carbonation is up to where I want it. I'd rather do that than wasting time lowering the carbonation. That's my reasoning for only using half the amount of sugar. Better safe than sorry I guess. It works well for me, and I don't have to be stressed about how the end product is going to turn out. I should probably clarify that more when I post about my process. I can see how it can be viewed as a bit misleading.

Plus, I'm not very good at measuring sugar accurately. :ban:
 
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