yeast fermentation time in primary

Physics, chemistry and biology of brewing. The causes and the effects.

Moderator: slothrob

Post Reply
spgriffin
Pale Ale
Pale Ale
Posts: 57
Joined: Wed Mar 18, 2009 8:49 am
Location: Chicago

yeast fermentation time in primary

Post by spgriffin » Sun Oct 11, 2009 7:44 am

So what it the latest convention in leaving wort sit in primary? I have typically followed the packages of wyeast, but lately people seem to be saying don't secondary unless it is a high gravity beer or you use fruit. Primary for 2 weeks and go straight to racking to keg or bottles. Of course I read this in the middle of fermenting a beer that has only days left to hit 7 days, which is when I typically rack to secondary and now question if this is currently a good idea, or leave it to the full 14 days and keg?

User avatar
slothrob
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 1834
Joined: Mon Apr 10, 2006 1:36 pm
Location: Greater Boston

Secondary?

Post by slothrob » Sun Oct 11, 2009 10:34 am

The current philosophy developing on using a secondary stems from the idea that the role of a Secondary is as a clearing and/or aging step along with the belief that it's best to leave the beer on the yeast until fermentation byproducts have been cleaned up. Many off flavors that come from interrupting fermentation, such as Diacetyl and Acetaldehyde, could be reduced with a little more time in Primary. In addition, fear of off-flavors from sitting on the yeast too long has diminished as more people have reported gaining no such flavors from leaving the beer on the yeast (for a reasonable amount of time).

I leave the beer in primary until the FG has been hit then let it sit for another 2 or 3 days to clean up. Since this usually means more than 7 days, I usually leave an average gravity beer in Primary for 2 weeks. Then, if I need to further clear the beer, or if I'm using a yeast that will be easily stirred up by the transfer, or if I want to lager the beer, I'll use a Secondary. A secondary would also be recommended for a strong beer that would benefit from bulk aging.
BTP v2.0.* Windows XP

spgriffin
Pale Ale
Pale Ale
Posts: 57
Joined: Wed Mar 18, 2009 8:49 am
Location: Chicago

primary

Post by spgriffin » Sun Oct 11, 2009 8:20 pm

You make perfect sense. I'll leave my primary go for a few days now. I don't think I'll experience any off flavors. Thanks

Post Reply