What exactly is soft crashing?

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olotti

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This is new to me but after the apparent hop creep I’m experiencing on the taste of my new and latest NEIPA where would I fit this in my process, I don’t use a ferm chamber just ferm in my basement at temps in the mid to high 60’s. So after I ferm for 3-4 days adding the first dh I move my carboy upstairs where it hits 72 deg then I’ll leave it there for another 7 days during which I’ll add my second dh at day 7 then to my keezer to cold crash for 36-48hrs before kegging in a closed co2 transfer. I’ve wondered about hop creep when I dh at those higher 72deg temps and think I’m finally seeing and tasting it. So should I bring the carboy up for say a couple days so The yeast can clean up then back to the basement and do let it cool before the second dh so that dh is in the 60’s as opposed to the 70 Ish deg temps.
 

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Did some digging online and it looks like soft crashing is getting the beer down to 55 to 60 deg. For the dh. I am new and have never done a dh so I dont know if the changes you listed above will help
 

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What exactly are you seeing and tasting to make you think it's hop creep?

Soft crashing is a means to prevent yeast working on newly created fermentables produced as a result of hop creep. It doesn't stop the enzymatic breakdown itself. It requires yeast either then be removed (centrifuge or filter), or it has to be kept permanently cold so the yeast can't start working again. If you want the yeast to clean it up, keep it warm.
 
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olotti

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What exactly are you seeing and tasting to make you think it's hop creep?

Soft crashing is a means to prevent yeast working on newly created fermentables produced as a result of hop creep. It doesn't stop the enzymatic breakdown itself. It requires yeast either then be removed (centrifuge or filter), or it has to be kept permanently cold so the yeast can't start working again. If you want the yeast to clean it up, keep it warm.
I have a neipa I kegged over a week ago and it has an insane burn on the back of the tongue even over a week later and I can’t figure out why so I’m thinking it’s hop particulate from the dry hopping that’s somehow even a week later at 34 deg still in suspension. I dh with the carboy upstairs in the low 70’s and I have noticed in the last couple beers almost a secondary fermentation kicking off, I just thought the beer/yeast was cleaning up but it’s also when I dryhop so it could be the hop creep kicking it off. My fg’s though are always around 1.014-1.016 which is what I’m aiming for So idk I always thought hop creep would lower the fg more. I’m jay trying to figure out really where this burn is coming from on this beer and how to not let it happen again.
 
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olotti

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Also I'd be soft crashing 50-55, not in the 60s.
what’s the difference. Can u still get hop creep in the 60’s? I thought it was more common dry hopping in warmer temps like in the 70’s Or higher.
 

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Hop burn and hop creep are different things.

If you're seeing a beer that was finished with stable gravity, then dry hopping and the gravity starts dropping again, yes, that's hop creep.

But with NEIPA and what sounds like you're doing a biostransformation addition, there's not much you can do about it.
 

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Hop creep is enzymes in your dry hops breaking down unfermentables into fermentables. Not much can be done to stop that apart from using less enzymatic hops. The important part is what the yeast do with it. The yeast either need to be allowed to fully referment it, or be prevented from working on it at all. If your yeast can work at your soft crash temp, you're not stopping them. If anything you're gonna end up with diacetyl down the line. You're better off staying warmer so it happens faster.
 
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olotti

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Hop burn and hop creep are different things.

If you're seeing a beer that was finished with stable gravity, then dry hopping and the gravity starts dropping again, yes, that's hop creep.

But with NEIPA and what sounds like you're doing a biostransformation addition, there's not much you can do about it.
huh I thought maybe the creep was what was holding the hop matter in suspension for so long But like u say the gravity which I take at day 7 after the first dh is stable. And the second dh I do after I take the fg sample only sits for 2 days before I cold crash so I can’t imagine that would kick off a hop creep/fg drop in so little time. Maybe I could get Away with one dh Addition since I do two large whirpool additions something I’m gonna try next beer.
 

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If your "secondary fermentation" is judged by airlock bubbles immediately after dry hopping, and you're not seeing a gravity drop, that's not hop creep. That's hop particles nucleating residual CO2 out of the beer.
 
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olotti

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Hop creep is enzymes in your dry hops breaking down unfermentables into fermentables. Not much can be done to stop that apart from using less enzymatic hops. The important part is what the yeast do with it. The yeast either need to be allowed to fully referment it, or be prevented from working on it at all. If your yeast can work at your soft crash temp, you're not stopping them. If anything you're gonna end up with diacetyl down the line. You're better off staying warmer so it happens faster.
ok that makes sense. I’d rather get rid of the diacetyl or acetaldehyde.
 
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olotti

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If your "secondary fermentation" is judged by airlock bubbles immediately after dry hopping, and you're not seeing a gravity drop, that's not hop creep. That's hop particles nucleating residual CO2 out of the beer.
again ur making to much sense. Lol yeah I hookup a tube to a Mylar balloon to capture co2 for cold crashing and yeah usually after that second dh it’ll fill the balloon in a day.
 

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After you keg it, pull a sample and check the gravity again (degassing it as necessary). I wouldn't expect nucleation alone to produce enough to fill a balloon, and that also happens rapidly (it's how hop geysers happen)

You may just need it to let it sit longer warm after the second dry hop. If you're getting a renewed fermentation, I could see that keeping your hop particulate (and resulting burn) in suspension longer.
 
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olotti

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After you keg it, pull a sample and check the gravity again (degassing it as necessary). I wouldn't expect nucleation alone to produce enough to fill a balloon, and that also happens rapidly (it's how hop geysers happen)

You may just need it to let it sit longer warm after the second dry hop. If you're getting a renewed fermentation, I could see that keeping your hop particulate (and resulting burn) in suspension longer.
I could pull a sample before I cold crash to right? And let me rephrase, the balloon is connected up for atleast a couple days prior to the second dh so it’s not going from flat to full in two days, after the second dh it basically fills the last 30%.
 

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However you're able to pull a closed sample will work. Hop creep I usually see drop gravity anywhere from 0.002-0.004 before levelling off. So if you were stable at 1.016 hop creep might drop you to 1.012-1.014.

Attended an interesting panel where they ran a beer through GC pre and post dry hop, and watched dextrins and higher saccharides turn into maltose. It can actually make the beer taste sweeter if the yeast don't referment it. The bigger issues are potential overcarb in bottles (this happened to Allagash which prompted one of the papers on it identifying Cascade as a major offender, another recent paper flags Centennial as well), as well as the creation if a-acetolactate during the refermentation that if cut short oxidizes to diacetyl down the line. I used to have that problem with an IPA I used to brew (which was, of course, dry hopped with Cascade and Centennial). Would dry hop when fermentation was done, it'd drop slightly, then keg it. Would taste great, no diacetyl, then 2 months later diacetyl would pop up. I started dry hopping sooner, raising the temp a couple degrees, and it stabilized more quickly and the problem went away. I think having still active yeast (as opposed to what was hanging around waiting to flocc out) metabolized the byproducts faster and more completely, and no longer left behind the diacetyl precursor (started doing force tests to make sure). If dry hopping cold isn't an option, that's my standard practice now.
 
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olotti

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However you're able to pull a closed sample will work. Hop creep I usually see drop gravity anywhere from 0.002-0.004 before levelling off. So if you were stable at 1.016 hop creep might drop you to 1.012-1.014.

Attended an interesting panel where they ran a beer through GC pre and post dry hop, and watched dextrins and higher saccharides turn into maltose. It can actually make the beer taste sweeter if the yeast don't referment it. The bigger issues are potential overcarb in bottles (this happened to Allagash which prompted one of the papers on it identifying Cascade as a major offender, another recent paper flags Centennial as well), as well as the creation if a-acetolactate during the refermentation that if cut short oxidizes to diacetyl down the line. I used to have that problem with an IPA I used to brew (which was, of course, dry hopped with Cascade and Centennial). Would dry hop when fermentation was done, it'd drop slightly, then keg it. Would taste great, no diacetyl, then 2 months later diacetyl would pop up. I started dry hopping sooner, raising the temp a couple degrees, and it stabilized more quickly and the problem went away. I think having still active yeast (as opposed to what was hanging around waiting to flocc out) metabolized the byproducts faster and more completely, and no longer left behind the diacetyl precursor (started doing force tests to make sure). If dry hopping cold isn't an option, that's my standard practice now.
wow that’s very interesting. It’s amazing how much science has taken over in the beer world And not in an over analytical way.
 

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The science has always been there. Hop creep has been identified as a phenomenon for 125 years or so. What's new is craft beer and the trickling of science once left to the big guys (and the Germans) to smaller breweries. Newer still is the trickling of that science to homebrewers. Nice to see advanced homebrewers refer to Kunze instead of Palmer.
 
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olotti

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The science has always been there. Hop creep has been identified as a phenomenon for 125 years or so. What's new is craft beer and the trickling of science once left to the big guys (and the Germans) to smaller breweries. Newer still is the trickling of that science to homebrewers. Nice to see advanced homebrewers refer to Kunze instead of Palmer.
I guess that’s what I meant was the trickle down of science to the homebrew community, it’s not such a closely guarded secret anymore for the big guys to use it’s now available to all of us. It makes ya realize that what one makes can be good and satisfying but if u wanna take the product next level use the science that’s out there to tweak the product to make it better.
 
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