Author Topic: Using clarifier at the end of fermentation  (Read 2615 times)

Offline awfenske

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Using clarifier at the end of fermentation
« on: March 04, 2013, 12:35:37 PM »
I have an Imperial Nut Brown in primary fermentation - today is the 11th day in the primary. After two weeks, assuming I have hit the appropriate FG, I'd like to rack it and add Biofine, then bottle it once the Biofine has done its work (maybe 24-36hrs, based on visual).

I used Biofine recently in a batch of mead I made, and it had an amazing effect even within the first few hours. Over a month after bottling there is almost zero visible sediment in the bottles. So I figured it would be great to use this stuff in beer, but I want to make sure it will not drop out all or too much of the yeast since I will be bottle conditioning.

Just to clarify (no pun intended!), I'm looking for opinions or experience on using Biofine after fermentation is complete, not to stir up (again, no pun intended) epic battles about how long to wait before racking to secondary or whether secondary fermentation is necessary or beneficial. I'm only planning on racking it in order to get the Biofine mixed in without kicking up the yeast cake, so if the consensus is that the Biofine will drop out too much yeast then I'll just bottle straight out of the primary after the two-week mark, again assuming the correct FG has been reached. I would love to be able to drink a home brew straight from the bottle rather than decanting and leaving that precious bit behind, but maybe I'm just crazy.

Online morticaixavier

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Re: Using clarifier at the end of fermentation
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2013, 01:18:08 PM »
I have an Imperial Nut Brown in primary fermentation - today is the 11th day in the primary. After two weeks, assuming I have hit the appropriate FG, I'd like to rack it and add Biofine, then bottle it once the Biofine has done its work (maybe 24-36hrs, based on visual).

I used Biofine recently in a batch of mead I made, and it had an amazing effect even within the first few hours. Over a month after bottling there is almost zero visible sediment in the bottles. So I figured it would be great to use this stuff in beer, but I want to make sure it will not drop out all or too much of the yeast since I will be bottle conditioning.

Just to clarify (no pun intended!), I'm looking for opinions or experience on using Biofine after fermentation is complete, not to stir up (again, no pun intended) epic battles about how long to wait before racking to secondary or whether secondary fermentation is necessary or beneficial. I'm only planning on racking it in order to get the Biofine mixed in without kicking up the yeast cake, so if the consensus is that the Biofine will drop out too much yeast then I'll just bottle straight out of the primary after the two-week mark, again assuming the correct FG has been reached. I would love to be able to drink a home brew straight from the bottle rather than decanting and leaving that precious bit behind, but maybe I'm just crazy.

There will be a little yeast left behind in the bottle. I don't see how you would avoid that AND bottle condition. The yeast that produce the co2 will drop out when the food supply is exhausted.

If you want perfectly clear beer that you can drink straight from the bottle (does it matter if it's perfectly clear at that point? can you see it?) try kegging and bottling from the keg.

I regularly see a little sediment in a bottle of Sierra Nevada because they are bottle conditioned.
"Creativity is the residue of wasted time" - A. Einstein

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Offline awfenske

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Re: Using clarifier at the end of fermentation
« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2013, 01:48:51 PM »
My primary concern is the batch in progress right now, so switching to kegging is not an option in the next 3 days. I am just looking for some info as to whether Biofine will drop out too much of the yeast thereby preventing regular carbonation in the bottle.

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Re: Using clarifier at the end of fermentation
« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2013, 02:06:18 PM »
My primary concern is the batch in progress right now, so switching to kegging is not an option in the next 3 days. I am just looking for some info as to whether Biofine will drop out too much of the yeast thereby preventing regular carbonation in the bottle.

I'm sorry  I really didn't mean to sound snarky. And I do not know the answer to your question but I would be hesitant to remove that much yeast and still attempt it. I would go ahead and add a little yeast at bottling time. maybe .5 packets of us-05 per 5 gallons.

I was simply saying that you WILL end up with sediment if you do this so the idea of drinking straight out of the bottle is out unless you want to drink some yeast which is not that big of a deal either.
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Offline a10t2

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Re: Using clarifier at the end of fermentation
« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2013, 02:07:32 PM »
The amount of yeast needed is so small that I would say you *could* leave enough in suspension to carbonate. I would instead do what Sierra Nevada does, substituting fining for filtration. Dose with the BioFine as usual, then rack the bright beer into the bottling bucket and add the bottling yeast (1 million/mL, which is 1 g rehydrated dry yeast for 5 gal) along with the priming sugar.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2013, 06:54:57 PM by a10t2 »
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Offline duboman

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Re: Using clarifier at the end of fermentation
« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2013, 03:21:41 PM »
I see you are in IL, me as well! With the cold weather why don't you just cold crash it in the garage for a day or two. You will, IMO, achieve the same clarity you are looking for without adding something else to the beer.

As already mentioned, there will always be a small amount of sediment in bottle conditioned beer, no way around it!

In addition, if you are sure to keep the beer refrigerated after carbing  up but prior to drinking, for at least 1 week, the sediment will compact nicely and with a gentle pour it will not wind up in the glass.
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Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: Using clarifier at the end of fermentation
« Reply #6 on: March 04, 2013, 06:41:08 PM »
I just cold crashed a Belgian blonde and have to say I'm very pleased with the clarity.

I was hoping to avoid using gelatin, as I want to reuse the yeast.

Dropping the beer to 50 did wonders.
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Offline awfenske

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Re: Using clarifier at the end of fermentation
« Reply #7 on: March 04, 2013, 09:55:03 PM »
I like the idea of using Mother Nature's curse to help me with this. I'm concerned though, since my outdoor thermometer has been reading right around 32 degrees (currently 32.9) and I don't have a garage that would be a few degrees warmer than outside, just a carport. Maybe it'll warm up a little in a few days. If not, it sounds like pulling a Sierra Nevada will do the trick.

Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: Using clarifier at the end of fermentation
« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2013, 07:53:51 AM »
That might pose some problems, though I doubt it will freeze at 32.

You could put it inside a cardboard box.  Cardboard is a great insulator.  Over time, though, you'll drop to ambient temp.

I don't know how long you'll need.  I put my Belgian in the cold room on Saturday night.  It was looking very clear by Sunday night.

If you're snowed in for the next day or so, put it outside and check on it every 8 hours or so.
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Offline awfenske

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Re: Using clarifier at the end of fermentation
« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2013, 08:06:05 AM »
If I cold crash it, do I still need to add more yeast at bottling time? I appreciate everyone's input and suggestions - thanks!

Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: Using clarifier at the end of fermentation
« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2013, 08:17:24 AM »
I don't bottle much these days, but when I did bottle everything I never once added additional yeast.

I think you should be fine, as cold crashing will not drop out all of the yeast.

If you're concerned, you should go ahead and add yeast.  There are a number of strains that people seem to prefer for bottling as they settle out and form a dense layer in the bottle that is not so easily disturbed.  One that springs to mind is T-58.  There is also a new strain specifically marketed as a bottling yeast.  CBC-1 or something like that.
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Offline duboman

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Using clarifier at the end of fermentation
« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2013, 08:55:54 AM »
If I cold crash it, do I still need to add more yeast at bottling time? I appreciate everyone's input and suggestions - thanks!

I have found that 1-3 days of cold crash at 35-45F has worked really well and I have not had to ever add yeast.

I have found that carbonation and conditioning has taken 3-5 days longer as the beer needs to warm back up properly for the yeast to go about their business again
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Offline a10t2

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Re: Using clarifier at the end of fermentation
« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2013, 09:23:07 AM »
There's a world of difference between cold-crashing and BioFine. Cold will definitely help, but BioFine is something else. You have to see it to believe it.
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Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: Using clarifier at the end of fermentation
« Reply #13 on: March 05, 2013, 09:27:45 AM »
How does it compare with gelatin?  That's what I typically use for fining.
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Offline a10t2

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Re: Using clarifier at the end of fermentation
« Reply #14 on: March 05, 2013, 09:33:27 AM »
I've never used gelatin, so I can't say. BioFine gives results roughly on par with coarse (7-10 micron) filtration, IME. Maybe even a little better with dusty strains.
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