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Author Topic: Fermentation time  (Read 1883 times)

Offline Kyle

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Fermentation time
« on: January 14, 2011, 10:32:49 PM »
The older brewing literature says to use the 1-2-3 method (1 week primary, 2 weeks secondary, 3 weeks bottle or keg). The newer literature says to use about 3-4 weeks in primary, and (unless fruiting or really high gravity) no secondary, then bottle until carbonated or keg. The quality of the beer six weeks from brew day handled the old way is much lower than the same period of time using the new approach.  The reason the old way was stressed was that brewer's yeast used to reach the autolysis stage if left unattended for several weeks. This is no longer a problem unless you leave it for a really long time. If you use healthy yeast and follow good sanitation procedures, then leaving the brew in primary is actually beneficial, as the yeasts actually clean up fusels and other unpleasantness. One of the finest brews I made, a Trippel, was left in primary for 6 weeks.
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Offline Tony L

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Re: Fermentation time
« Reply #1 on: January 25, 2011, 08:36:36 PM »
Doing no secondary also keeps oxidation down as less transfers mean less O2.

I haven't done a secondary now in years, but let it go for a few weeks past primary and either keg or bottle from primary. Of course if I'm doing lagers, I'll either secondary or in the case of using my conical, just dump yeast and let lager.

Offline Richard

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Re: Fermentation time
« Reply #2 on: January 25, 2011, 11:43:26 PM »
I stopped bothering with secondary after everything I read at HBT + other forums; I'm convinced the old status quo was to counteract excessively sub-par yeast autolysis.

Although that does conjure the further question: what kind of lag times were they getting that this was actually a problem?
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