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Will a keg age while refrigerated?

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EricK The Red

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I kegged and force carbonated my English Pale Ale after it'd been in the secondary for only one week. The beer is only 2 weeks old at this point and I'd like to age it a bit more. Can I take the keg out of the fridge to let it condition some more? or should I just leave it chilled for another few weeks?

This is my first kegging experience.
 

Poindexter

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Basically, umm, not really. Ale yeast do a lot better near room temps.

Is it cold all the way through? 7 days in primary, 7 days in secondary, how fast did you force carb it?
 
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EricK The Red

EricK The Red

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Poindexter said:
Basically, umm, not really. Ale yeast do a lot better near room temps.

Is it cold all the way through? 7 days in primary, 7 days in secondary, how fast did you force carb it?
It's been in the fridge since yesterday, so it's pretty cold. 6 days in primary, 5 days in secondary with gelatin.

It's good at this point but it finishes with a hint of dirty copper (like a penny). Otter Creek Copper Ale is what it reminds me of.
 

malkore

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it ages much slower at cooler temps. If it were mine, I'd keep it cooler than room temp but warmer than serving temp. 50-60F would be great.

give it time to mature a little and you'll be happy.

a keg is just a bit bottle, though most force carb rather than prime.
 

Kai

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erohver said:
So can I warm it back up? Should I leave 5 lbs of pressure on it and put it in my closet?
That sounds good.

Keep in mind that, after the yeast-cleaning-up part of conditioning is done, a lot of people will crash cool their ales for a couple of days before tapping. I'm not sure exactly what it accomplishes, but I think it gets the yeast out of suspension and precipitates some proteins out of the beer.
 

david_42

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You shouldn't leave the CO2 connected. The pressure will rise as the keg warms up & you could get back-flow into the regulator. Give it a month, then chill it & reconnect.
 

TheJadedDog

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Well force carbing is not the same as priming. If you were priming you'd need to leave it at room temperature to get yeast activity and carbonation. Since you force carbed it, it will continue to condition and get better over time even though it is in the fridge.
 

TexLaw

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It might age more slowly, but it will age just fine, and I also believe it will age more smoothly. I age all my beers at roughly 35F. If it were less trouble, I might do so at 50F, but 35F works fine. According to the brewers I talk to and other stuff I've read and heard, you are better off aging too cold than too warm, and room temperature is too warm.


TL
 

Bobby_M

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I usually leave it in primary for a week after active ferment has ceased. Then rack to secondary and leave warm for at least a week, then a week cold. Then it goes to keg and put on the gas for another week or two in the cold. I wouldn't want to rush any of these steps. If the beer is bigger than 1.060 OG, I'd leave it warm for longer.
 

cnoyes

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TexLaw said:
It might age more slowly, but it will age just fine, and I also believe it will age more smoothly. I age all my beers at roughly 35F. If it were less trouble, I might do so at 50F, but 35F works fine. According to the brewers I talk to and other stuff I've read and heard, you are better off aging too cold than too warm, and room temperature is too warm.


TL
So at what point do you cool it down? How long in primary, secondary?
 

foxtrot

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Here's my procedure:

1. Primary for at least 10 days, or until FG hits.
2. Crash chill the primary in the fridge for at least 3 solid days at NMT 40F (this helps clear the beer & compact the yeast cake for transfer)
3. Keg, place in the kegerator and age (under slight CO2 pressure) for one week for every 10 gravity units (ie. 5 weeks if OG was 1.050).
4. Force carb for 1 more week.

I think most brews taste better as more time goes. I believe beer mellows nice at cold temps.
 

TexLaw

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cnoyes said:
So at what point do you cool it down? How long in primary, secondary?
Primary and secondary times depend on the beer, but I usually go about 10 days in a primary and another 10-14 in the secondary. If the yeast is all done with the fermentation and diacetyl party, I cold crash to 35F overnight and keg the next day. After that, it usually stays at 35 until the keg blows. I have been very, very happy with how my beers age.


TL
 

Bobby_M

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Foxtrot,
I personally think you're going cold too quickly. You're putting the yeast to sleep right after the primary ferment is done. Giving the yeast time to process the byproducts of primary fermentation would be benefitial.
 
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EricK The Red

EricK The Red

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I got my tap a day earlier than UPS quoted me! When I got home I poured a glass of my English Pale Ale and it has a slight metallic taste. Will this go away with age?
 
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