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#1 ER Pemberton

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Posted 02 July 2018 - 10:50 AM

I know that with all of the variables in our processes it might be hard to come up with an answer on this but here goes:  It seems like a lot of brewers have been able to go grain-to-glass within about 2 weeks and that might go for an ale or a lager.  Not everyone does this but even with the 4-5 day fast-lager process it seems very possible for most brewers.  Grain-to-glass is one thing but what does everyone think the time frame is for "grain-to-peak flavor" and is it different for an ale or a lager even with the fast lager process?  I put a couple of lagers on tap recently that weren't really ready to go.  The beer was fine but after another 1-2 weeks cold they were much better.  Thoughts?



#2 drez77

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Posted 02 July 2018 - 10:54 AM

I think for dry hopped beers 4-6 weeks is where I like them.  I think lagers are about the same, for my tastes.  I look at the fast lager process as just a way to get it out of the fermentor and into a keg to condition faster.  Just a means for the yeast to do their work as fast as possible.

 

Sunday July 8 will be 14 days since I brewed my Cascade APA.  That is in the keg sitting at 20 PSI spunding on my basement floor.  I plan to have it cold by the 8th and I will try and pay attention to when I think that beer really comes into its own.  I bet it will be close to the end of July.


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#3 ER Pemberton

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Posted 02 July 2018 - 11:17 AM

The fast lager method was originally sold as a way to make lagers "without lagering them".  I saw a lot of information on the process from various sources but I remember Tasty McDole's description of being able to drink a lager two weeks after brewing it and that the beer was as good as a beer that lagered at 30° for 2 months (or something... the key was that the beer was totally drinkable and delicious within 2 weeks of brewing).  I'm not sure that's true but I have been using the fast lager method of having the beer in the fridge at 50° for 4-5 days and then I take it out and leave it at basement temps.

 

Also, your 4-6 week timeline for dry-hopped beers is surprising to me.  It seems just a little too long for a beer that has that "fresh hop" flavor but then again I'm not as big of a hophead as you.  



#4 drez77

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Posted 02 July 2018 - 11:26 AM

The fast lager method was originally sold as a way to make lagers "without lagering them".  I saw a lot of information on the process from various sources but I remember Tasty McDole's description of being able to drink a lager two weeks after brewing it and that the beer was as good as a beer that lagered at 30° for 2 months (or something... the key was that the beer was totally drinkable and delicious within 2 weeks of brewing).  I'm not sure that's true but I have been using the fast lager method of having the beer in the fridge at 50° for 4-5 days and then I take it out and leave it at basement temps.

 

Also, your 4-6 week timeline for dry-hopped beers is surprising to me.  It seems just a little too long for a beer that has that "fresh hop" flavor but then again I'm not as big of a hophead as you.  

Hoping rates may be part to blame.  I find that early on there is some hop burn associated with the beers.  A couple of weeks and that goes away and the beer "comes together" for me.

 

I remember this video from The Alchemist where John Kimmich talks about at one point feeling Heady Topper was best at 10 weeks old!  Now they have a 28 day brew day to can timeline.  That is still 4 weeks so that kind of fits with my 4-6 week time frame.

 

Video for reference ( sometime around 4 minutes) -


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#5 ER Pemberton

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Posted 02 July 2018 - 11:50 AM

I'm going to watch that later.

 

Btw, I'm thinking 4 weeks for most of my beers with ales possibly being shorter than that with regard to ALL sensory areas... aroma, flavor, appearance, clarity, head formation, general drinkability, etc.



#6 SchwanzBrewer

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Posted 02 July 2018 - 06:22 PM

The fast lager method is a production method. It has nothing to do with peak beer flavor/aroma. All beers will be different time wise to peak depending on your tastes. There is no one size fits all to peak beer. Go by your taste buds.
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