Shaking bottles

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html034

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For reasons i can't quite explain, while my first batch was bottle aging, i shook some of the bottles up.

Then when it came time to begin drinking them, the first bottles i tasted were the ones that I had shaken, and they came out with a good carbonation.

Additionally i had a one Grolsch bottle that I had repeated the shaking with a few times, and when I opened that one, it had a huge amount of carbonation.

Now when I am opening bottles that I never shook, it seems that they are significantly less carbonated than the shaken bottles.

Can anyone explain to me what exactly is going on here? And also is there a reason why I should or should not shake bottles in the future?
 

zoebisch01

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You resuspended the yeast. In the future, you can shake them if it seems that carbonation is lagging. In all honesty, I'd look to other stages in the process first.

One is time: How long since you brewed the beer 'till bottling. The longer, the more chance the yeast has fallen sufficiently out of suspension (more yeast, faster conversion).

Second: Strain of yeast, some yeasts will remain in suspension (flocculation) longer (more yeast, faster conversion).

Third: Temperature of carbonation, I recommend carbonating at ferment temp, then storing (colder temps, longer conversion or possibly you can arrest the action of your yeast if they fall far enough below their normal operating temp).

Fourth: Gravity, the higher the initial gravity the more spent your yeast will be when it comes time to bottling. If you have gone longer than say 2 months in the secondary, or it is a significantly high gravity brew (over 1.07 OG) then it may behoove you to add a sprinkling of lager yeast to the carboy/etc the day prior to bottling.

That all being said, your unshaken ones will most likely reach their full carbonation potential, it will just take longer. I have had this happen before.
 
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html034

html034

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Yeah, I thought that it must just have to do with aggitating the yeast at the bottoms of the bottles.

The beer in question is an amber ale extract kit, which i brewed on Feb 2 and bottled 2 weeks later. I used the munton's yeast that came with the kit, and the bottles were stored exactly 3 feet from where i kept my fermenter.

I tried the shaken ones about a week, a week and a half after bottling, and have been drinking unshaken bottles since then, but even up until yesterday, they don't seem as carbonated as the shaken ones, and I have yet to have a bottle with as much carbonation as the grolsch bottle i shook a few times.

Would the fact that I underfilled the bottles (to the neck) be a factor in undercarbonation?

But overall, Is shaking them something i don't want to do in the future?
 

Blender

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I wouldn't shake the heck out of them but just enough to get the yeast back into suspension is fine. As you go along you will find what works best.

Happy Brewing.
 

Evan!

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I had a batch of IIPA that used 12.5oz of hops, that just refused to carbonate. Now, I wasn't about to give up on a batch that, in theory, cost so much $$ in hops, so I put them back into my warm room and shook them (like you shake a bottle of fruit juice...pretty thorough) once every other day for 2 weeks. At the end...fully carbonated. I wouldn't recommend this trick every time, but if you're having problems carbonating your bottles, try that...
 

FullDraw

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Just to drag this up again. I had a Dunkelweizen that didn't want to carb. Bottled it in november, and as of january, not much. My error was priming in the cellar, and it got too cold. But even after bringing them upstairs(70) in december, no luck. They've sat there since. 3 weeks ago, I gently swirled the bottles upside down to get the yeast in suspension. I've seen a gradual carbonation increase one week at a time, and last night's beer was enjoyable carbed throughout it's entirety.
 
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