Conditioning temp

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sbond10
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Conditioning temp

Post by sbond10 » Sun Jan 24, 2016 5:05 pm

I've been looking thru some recipes by Greg Hughes. And it states the fermenting temp and conditioning temp. Until recently I've been fermenting at what ever the room temp was. Bottling then drinking in a few weeks time etc.
Now I've got a fridge to brew in I can control the ferment temp better. Now this is where I'm getting confused. I thought once bottled you put it back in the fridge say at 18c for 2 weeks then crash it down to 2 c for a week.
The book suggest conditioning most at 12c for 3-4 weeks. Does this mean ferment then bottle then put it back in the fridge at 12c for the suggested time. As isn't this too cold for a secondary ferment.

Can someone clear this up please

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Kyle_T
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Re: Conditioning temp

Post by Kyle_T » Sun Jan 24, 2016 5:19 pm

It is commonly referred to as 'Cold Conditioning', it is most effective for cask and bottle conditioned beer, it is warm enough for yeast to finish it's work inside the cask but cold enough for it to drop out when it's done. The chemical changes are mostly complete within 2 weeks, the rest is the maturation period of allowing the flavours to mellow and meld together.

It is best to include an intermediate 24 hour period of between 14 - 16 degrees, this will slow the yeast down and place a large portion of it into suspension within the beer, then continue to chill to between 10 and 12 degrees before racking into your desired container, then condition at 12 degrees until it is needed.
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sbond10
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Re: Conditioning temp

Post by sbond10 » Sun Jan 24, 2016 5:46 pm

So with what your suggesting is something like this

*day 1 ferment at 18c
*day 8 reduce to 14c
Day 9 reduce to 12c
Day ten bottle then condition for 3 weeks at 12c

Is this right

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Kyle_T
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Re: Conditioning temp

Post by Kyle_T » Sun Jan 24, 2016 6:13 pm

Pretty much, I ferment at 21 for my house yeast, once fermentation reaches 75 -80% complete, lower to 13 for 24 hours, check gravity and then lower to 10 for 24 hours before racking, store and condition at 12 for minimum 2 weeks.
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Re: Conditioning temp

Post by Jocky » Sun Jan 24, 2016 6:31 pm

Wait until the ferment is done - 5-7 days usually. You can then reduce the temperature if you wish to help drop some of the yeast and other crap out to help clear the beer, but frankly it will do this itself without cold crashing given a week or two.

This bit is my own take... The danger of crash cooling is that the negative pressure created by cooling will suck in some air and oxidise your beer... that can depend upon what you are brewing, but is something for another thread discussion. Basically, oxidation is bad, and best avoided, and I'd recommend not cold crashing unless you have a system that can help you avoid oxidation.

After you bottle you need the beer at fermenting temperatures to help carbonate the beer - you need the yeast active again, and it won't do that cold. I like to bottle condition at 20C for 1-2 weeks. As I type this I'm drinking a beer that was bottled a week ago and is perfectly carbonated now. A couple of weeks would be ideal - when I had the first beer from this batch after 5 days there was some excess yeast that was provided an off taste/aroma, so it wasn't done. You can also do this at room temperature, but for me 'room' temperature at this time of year is a bit cooler than 20, so it just takes a bit longer.

After this the yeast will drop out and weld itself to the bottom of the bottle on its own, but chilling it down will help this happen a bit faster.

So:
7 days fermenting
7 days conditioning (warm or cold)
Bottle
Keep bottles warm for 2 weeks at 19-21C
Chill and serve.
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Kyle_T
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Re: Conditioning temp

Post by Kyle_T » Sun Jan 24, 2016 6:33 pm

Jocky wrote:After you bottle you need the beer at fermenting temperatures to help carbonate the beer - you need the yeast active again, and it won't do that cold.
Erm...Yes it will.
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Re: Conditioning temp

Post by wezzel01 » Sun Jan 24, 2016 7:09 pm

I always leave the beer at about 20 degrees after bottling for a week or two to carb up before storing at cellar temp. It will carb up at the lower temp but will take longer. It depends how quickly you intend drinking it and, if like me, you like fresh, pale hoppy beers that can be pretty quickly.

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Re: Conditioning temp

Post by guypettigrew » Sun Jan 24, 2016 9:11 pm

Kyle_T wrote:
Jocky wrote:After you bottle you need the beer at fermenting temperatures to help carbonate the beer - you need the yeast active again, and it won't do that cold.
Erm...Yes it will.
+1 to Kyle_T's comment.

My beer is fermented to about 1/4 gravity, then cooled to about 6C for a day or so to drop most of the yeast out.

It's then racked into a King Keg, dry hopped and fined and moved to my beer shed where the temperature is about 12C. The yeast keeps on working and the beer conditions (gasses up) perfectly well.

As an experiment my last beer was cooled and racked much earlier than usual. Just before 1/4 gravity was reached and just five days after pitching a new White Labs 001.

It took a little longer to clear than usual, probably because there was still quite a bit of easily fermentable sugar, but is now perfectly clear, well carbonated and very drinkable.

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Re: Conditioning temp

Post by sbond10 » Sun Jan 24, 2016 10:27 pm

Why when I ask a question I get 2 sides of the coin with no deffinate answer. Think I'll try the 12c and see how it goes

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Re: Conditioning temp

Post by sbond10 » Sun Jan 24, 2016 10:28 pm

Would a week at 18 c do any harm once bottled

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Re: Conditioning temp

Post by guypettigrew » Sun Jan 24, 2016 10:54 pm

sbond10 wrote:Would a week at 18 c do any harm once bottled
Depends how much gas it creates! If you don't have much yeast in the bottle, and not much in the way of fermentables, no worry. Lots of yeast and lots of sugars--a beer bomb!!

Just think how much gas your beer creates during its primary fermentation at 18C. If it carries on creating that much gas in a sealed bottle then problems could follow.

And why do you get lots of apparently different answers? Because brewing is as much an art as a science.

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Re: Conditioning temp

Post by Rhodesy » Sun Jan 24, 2016 11:16 pm

Jocky wrote: This bit is my own take... The danger of crash cooling is that the negative pressure created by cooling will suck in some air and oxidise your beer... that can depend upon what you are brewing, but is something for another thread discussion. Basically, oxidation is bad, and best avoided, and I'd recommend not cold crashing unless you have a system that can help you avoid oxidation.
*Edit, my phone was playing up

I have to my knowledge at least, not had oxidation as a part of crash cooling in 50+ brews being ales & lagers. I understand that oxidation as a whole is a risk when transferring to secondary, bottling bucket, keg etc but the actual crash in the fridge/freezer is not something that has came up before. Thats not to say it is not possible only for something more common I would expect to have heard more. If undisturbed the beer should have a c02 blanket which should help (not saying eradicate) this?

When you suggest a system which can help avoid, do you mean a FV/secondary with no airlock etc? I would say the transfer from FV to bottling bucket/keg poses more of a threat of this than crash cooling yet this is very common. Not trying to discredit though sometimes think oxidation is overplayed in some instances (when controlled) and appreciate underplayed in others such as your example.

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Re: Conditioning temp

Post by sbond10 » Mon Jan 25, 2016 9:10 am

Yea I'm not sure what temp I've been fermenting/conditioning at so it could be as low as 12c
As I brewing at one point in an unheard room

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Re: Conditioning temp

Post by Jocky » Mon Jan 25, 2016 10:36 am

sbond10 wrote:Would a week at 18 c do any harm once bottled
If you've fermented out your beer fully before bottling then I would maintain that 18-20 is the ideal temperature to get fast carbonation. It'll happen at lower temperatures, just a bit slower in my experience using my method.

But in brewing there's many ways to skin any particular cat, and you have to find what works for you.
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Re: Conditioning temp

Post by BenB » Mon Jan 25, 2016 10:43 am

Would it depend on beer type / yeast strain? I would imagine some strains of lager yeast if you took them to 20 degrees would get stressed and introduce nasty flavours. May be wrong- just wondered. So far only brewed ales...

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