Secondary Q's

Brewing processes and methods. How to brew using extract, partial or all-grain. Tips and tricks.

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Secondary Q's

Postby Liquid Blur » Wed Nov 06, 2002 8:43 pm

I've had my Irish Ale in the secondary for about 3 days now. Alcohol percentage is right where I want it. About 4.3% My question is, Instead of letting it just sit in the carboy and clear, can I just put it into the fridge and let it clear that way or is there a certain amount of time I should wait before I put it in the fridge. Brewer2001, you mentioned putting into the fridge to help it clear. I'm planning on doing so but will I still be able to condition using corn surgar? Thanks for all your help, guys.
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Start cooling now.

Postby Brewer2001 » Wed Nov 06, 2002 9:01 pm

Blur,

I would start cooling your secondary now. The cooler temperature will speed up the clearing of the your ale. I bottle 'cold' on as much foam as possable using a bottle filler with a spring loaded tip. I then warm the ale up to room temperature (60-70F) for three or four days. This should get the yeast going again, you don't need much per bottle. After the period of warm storage cellar the bottles in a cool place to mature (try one a week). A good stability test is to place a marked six pack in a real warm place (on a water heater or near your furnace). This will "stress" test your ale for stability (just if your interested).
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Qu'est ce que c'est "stability"?

Postby jayhawk » Wed Nov 06, 2002 9:06 pm

What do you mean by stability, and testing for stability? How does subjecting the beer to warmth test stability?
Thanks
Chris
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This is a cheap way of "testing".

Postby Brewer2001 » Wed Nov 06, 2002 9:49 pm

Chris,

This mainly is a function of the brewing trade. The real way to determine if the beer/ale that leaves the brewery is biologically stable is to run lab tests (CO2 levels, oxidation, bacterial infection). However beer/ale that is sent out to the trade encounters all kinds of abuse. Storing a sample of each brewing and packaging run will help a brewery identify problems, hopefully before the majority of the customers discover them. Putting the beer on the "fast" decline track will help the brewer or lab tech see the problems first. It is just another check.

In a homebrew setting this is less critical but may be helpfull for us to check the progress of maturation (this only really applies to bottle packaged beer). Pro kegging (Sankey) and canning tend to be more stable than bottled products (from a mass production point of view). This two is why most mass produced beer is biologically and polish filtered then pasturized to kill everything....all in the name of stability for the market. Miller takes this a step further by using pre-isomerized hop oils to prevent light struck ("skunk") and add heading compounds. This fits the will of their marketing department...clear bottles and black delivery trucks. From the start the beer would not stand a chance if they did not alter the product.

I hope this clarifies the post. I think all homebrewers should take a tour of a large brewery and talk to the brewer at the local brewpub. A lot of questions would be answered.

Good brewing,

Tom

P.S. When I did my stint at a local brewpub I watched more 'good' ale go down the drain (in normal production) than most of us brew in any given year. Sad but true, not as bad but the majors dump even more (no big loss)
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That clears it up

Postby jayhawk » Wed Nov 06, 2002 11:13 pm

Thanks for the clarification. Sounds like you are a bit of a pro. How long have you been in the trade?
BTW, what kind of microbrews would you recommend if I was to visit Washington state? I have a buddy who heads to Bellingham regularly, and I would like him to pick me up a sample of the US micros. It seems like the US has more true micros, as the BC market has undergone considerable consolidation over the last 5 years, to the detrimant of the beer. It's still good, just not as good as during the renaissance.
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Thanks Brewer2001!!!

Postby Liquid Blur » Thu Nov 07, 2002 9:14 am

Makes sense. I'll go ahead an put the carboy in the fridge tonight :) I'm very excited. I tastes some of it last night when I took my hydrometer reading and wouldn't you know it, it tasted like beer!! lol Hey jayhawk, you're in Washington State? I grew up in a small town called Port Orchard which is about 10 miles past the Narrows Bridge on the Kitsap Penninsula. Well, take it easy and, as always thankyou for all of the information :)

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Not Vancouver Wa.

Postby jayhawk » Thu Nov 07, 2002 9:57 am

Actually, I am from Vancouver BC, Canada. But Brewer 2001 mentioned he was from Seattle. Aside from my HBS owner, you two are the closest homebrewers I know of. Cheers
Chris
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Third time.....

Postby Brewer2001 » Thu Nov 07, 2002 5:27 pm

Chris,
I won't tell you why this is the third attempt,but here goes. I worked for Nortel Network (a name you should know) until April 1,2001 (I had hoped my notice was a joke....but no). In 1999 while working in Austin, Tx. (good ale town) I decided that I needed a change. So I applied to the American Brewers Guild for enrollment to their 2000 class. Paid the money, took the course, apprenticed at the Elysian with Dick Cantwell and graduated. Still no brewing job but I had a blast and learned a lot. I was going to ask you how the industry and economy is doing up in BC. I spent some time in Vancover in 1998 for the pre-launch of the FIDO mobile network that Rogers Communications was building. My last night in BC a co-worker and I went to dinner, had my truck broken into and sampled some excellent micro brewed ales. That made the whole trip worthwhile.

Now too the important stuff: Skip at Boundry Bay (Bellingham) brews heavy full ales. Dick at Elysian (Seattle) brews a large varity of ales. Dick favors German and Belgien styles but they cover them all stout, porter, IPA, pales and seasonal ales. Tom Munoz at Far West Ireland (Redmond) makes a good selection and a very good Irish Red. Charlie Sullivan at Skagit Vally (Mount Vernon) brews some "crisp" full bodied ales. You can get some good food too. Here is the web address for the WBG home page which has a locator.
http://www.washingtonbrewersguild.org/

I am in Kenmore which is at the north shore of Lake Washington (easy to get to Seattle or the "East" side. Let me know if you are planning a trip.

Good brewing,

Tom
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BC is strange

Postby jayhawk » Fri Nov 08, 2002 9:54 am

BC is doing alright for micros, but there has been a lot of consilidation. Shaftebury was my fave, but it was absorbed by Sleeman. The best micros are now the local Vancouver breweries: R&B, Streamworks, Storm (downtown), Raven, and Hagars (on the north shore)...I think that is it. Nelson Brewing from Nelson in the Kootenays is, in my opinion, the best true micro going in BC. Hard to find sometimes though. Great Old Brewery Pale Ale (fantastic), IPA, Stout...

As far as economy, well it is hard to say. Overall Canada is doing fine, but BC is having problems with softwood lumber as the US gov't has levied 30% duties on our lumber (not raw logs however, just lumber). This put our main industry in to some tough times, lay offs etc. Tourism dropped after 9/11, which is another huge industry up here. The rural communities are the hardest hit right now, as people head for the cities. Not to mention services have been severly cut back by the provincial government in attempts to pay for tax breaks to the rich. That being said, skilled workers are in huge demand in BC right now, as our labour force consists of a lot of unemployed loggers. So trades, biotech, and technical knowledge are booming. Problem for is they only pay in CDN$. As for Fido, I think it is losing out to Telus, the main phone company in Western Canada.
That's my story
Chris
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Victoria's doing OK

Postby Gravity Thrills » Fri Nov 08, 2002 2:12 pm

I didn't make it to teh mainland, but I spent a couple of weeks on Vancouver Island last summer. Victoria had 4 brewpubs and a micro - 2 of the pubs were really good, and the other two not the worst I have had.

What I didn't count on was the strict law on no kids in the bars. I figured in the Land of Bob and Doug they would have been organizing grade school trips to the bars!

Jim
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Molson vending machines

Postby jayhawk » Fri Nov 08, 2002 3:36 pm

Cutbacks, cutbacks. Budget restraints have put a stop to the brewery field trips, but before you know it the school districts will be selling the vending machine rights to Molson ;)

You are right about Victoria. I was there last winter and was pleasently suprised at all the beers being brewed over there. I just wish I could remember the name of the IPA and Stout I had.

Drinko Bingo!
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