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1974Alby

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My fermentation process is pretty basic...two weeks in primary @18C (often dry hopping at around one week), bottle and leave for two weeks..drink! :chug:

If I were to add another week into the process, would I get a better final result from adding steps like racking to secondary/finings/cold crashing, or would an extra week in the bottle give a more noticeable improvement? :D
 

bignath

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My fermentation process is pretty basic...two weeks in primary @18C (often dry hopping at around one week), bottle and leave for two weeks..drink! :chug:

If I were to add another week into the process, would I get a better final result from adding steps like racking to secondary/finings/cold crashing, or would an extra week in the bottle give a more noticeable improvement? :D
Coming from someone who used to rack to secondary and do all that extra stuff, i reckon it's MOSTLY overrated.

My process is (usually using US05 or Nottingham) 1 week in primary, (or until it's finished, but they are usually done by then - particularly the notto) then just leave it in the fridge but drop the controller down to 1deg for a minimum of 3days, but often longer - 1 week +.. Then straight into da kegs!

Haven't noticed a change in the quality of my beers since ditching the secondary.

Others would disagree, so you mileage may vary.
 

Fatgodzilla

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My fermentation process is pretty basic...two weeks in primary @18C (often dry hopping at around one week), bottle and leave for two weeks..drink! :chug:

If I were to add another week into the process, would I get a better final result from adding steps like racking to secondary/finings/cold crashing, or would an extra week in the bottle give a more noticeable improvement? :D

If it tastes good enough to drink after two weeks, drink it. The other things - racking, fining, cold crashing .. show pony stuff.
 

Dave70

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In the scheme of things, aging beer for another week will do sweet FA.
I like the results I get from cold conditioning, so I give all my beers a week at zero. I spose racking has its place, but I've never seen the results to be arsed with it.

Alternatively, get into kegging. There's thirteen weeks waiting saved per year right there.
 

Bribie G

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The advantage of racking off the lees into another vessel, then cold conditioning with finings, then rack into the keg is that you get almost bright beer into the keg. I often do indeed rack into keg from primary that has been cold crashed but the first few litres do tend to be hazy before the clear beer kicks in, and often I have to chuck the first few glasses as they are almost opaque and undrinkable and consist of the crud that has settled down into the little well where the pickup tube sits.
If you add up all those glasses over a year I've probably done the equivalent of a whole brew for sludge production. Depends how lazy I'm feeling whether I rack or just crank the fridge down for a week.
 

Wolfy

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If I were to add another week into the process, would I get a better final result from adding steps like racking to secondary/finings/cold crashing, or would an extra week in the bottle give a more noticeable improvement? :D
I noticed a big improvement especially in the brightness of the resulting beer, by adding a few days to a week of cold conditioning at the coldest temp my old fridge could go.
However, rather than think just in terms of time (1-2-3 weeks), you can only cold condition your beer after fermentation has finished, so make sure it's finished, give it a few more days and then drop the temp.
 

sponge

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I'd be saying that if you really only wanted an extra week somewhere, as Dave said, cold conditioning for a week at 0-2'C would give better results faster than leaving it in the bottle for an extra week.

Also, I'd back up his comments on kegging...


Sponge
 

stux

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I think it depends on if you're kegging or bottling.

If you're bottling it might make more sense to NOT cold condition in the fermenter, and instead rack to bulk prime, and then bottle, prime and THEN cold condition.

In this context, the cold condition happens 3-6 weeks after bottling, and is basically when you stick the beer in your fridge for drinking :)

Essentially when you prime in the bottle you're taking a step back on the fermentation process anyway, no point doing the cold conditioning if you're then going to knock that condition out by doing a second fermentation.

If you're kegging, then absolutely crash chill for 5-7 days if you can before kegging. I still find kegged beer generally improves after another 2 weeks in the kegerator as it comes up to the perfect carb.... so the cold conditioning basically continues on until the keg blows since you keg cold.
 

manticle

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I think it depends on if you're kegging or bottling.

If you're bottling it might make more sense to NOT cold condition in the fermenter, and instead rack to bulk prime, and then bottle, prime and THEN cold condition.

In this context, the cold condition happens 3-6 weeks after bottling, and is basically when you stick the beer in your fridge for drinking :)

Essentially when you prime in the bottle you're taking a step back on the fermentation process anyway, no point doing the cold conditioning if you're then going to knock that condition out by doing a second fermentation.
I completely disagree. When you cold condition, you drop all sorts of shit out (dead and sleepy yeast, proteins, hop debris etc). Then when you bottle, you leave this stuff at the bottom of the fermenter.

Sure you get a bit of yeast sediment in your bottles and sure it's good to store cold once carbonated but lagering in bulk and cold storage achieve different things in my eyes.
 

stux

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I completely disagree. When you cold condition, you drop all sorts of shit out (dead and sleepy yeast, proteins, hop debris etc). Then when you bottle, you leave this stuff at the bottom of the fermenter.

Sure you get a bit of yeast sediment in your bottles and sure it's good to store cold once carbonated but lagering in bulk and cold storage achieve different things in my eyes.
So, would you propose 2 weeks in primary followed by a week at 0.5C, then rack to bulk prime, bottle... allow 3-4 weeks to warm up and carbonate then lager?
 

manticle

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Sort of.

Primary for me is always as long as it takes (could be 3 days, could be 8, could be 14) followed by a 5 day minimum on the yeast at ferment temps/diacetyl rest temps, brew dependent. could be 2 weeks, could be 3.

Then a week in the fridge (longer for some beers) at 0-2, bottled, carbed, then due to lack of space stored in my shed but preference would be cold or at least cellar storage. Melbourne weather gives me cold/cellar storage about 9 months of the year.

If considering putting a beer in a comp or giving away to someone, I place in the fridge once carbed to drop out as much haze as possible and to prevent staling.
 

Steve@PMF82

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If you can i would recommend giving a beer you a familiar with 5 days at -1 to zero degrees after your primary then bottling and see if you can pick any difference? I know for me my bottled and kegged beers are drinking better much quicker after dropping to this temp, where as i used to only hover around 2 degrees for a week to 10 days.
 

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