Author Topic: How long do you cold crash your beer  (Read 9846 times)

Offline Lazy Ant Brewing

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How long do you cold crash your beer
« on: August 26, 2017, 11:49:48 AM »
What's the minimum time to cold crash?  If you go longer is there any additional benefit?

Thanks in advice for your advice.
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Offline majorvices

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Re: How long do you cold crash your beer
« Reply #1 on: August 26, 2017, 12:22:38 PM »
There are going to be a lot of different answers to this question, and it is going to depend on your brewing method but I will give you an answer from my perspective. A lot of brewers think they get a lot more added benefit from cold crashing and lagering (and aging) than they really do. I brew batches of beer anywhere from 2.5 gallons to 1800 gallons of beer and really all you are doing when cold crashing is helping to precipitate out solids and chill haze. While I do mostly brew in a production environment and my case is a little different that what your's will be I can assure you that once a beer reaches cold temps (12-24 hours after starting the crash) and the chill haze is set we can centrifuge that beer until it is crystal clear and carbonate and package the next day. I'm talking pale lagers (Helles, Kolsch) and even some mid to high gravity Belgians.

So, if you can fine or filter the beer as soon as it is cold crashed then the answer would be you only need to cold crash the beer till it reaches your clarity level.

Likewise if you simply want to naturally let gravity and time work it's gig you can let the beer sit at cold crash temps until it meets your clarity level, but that doesn't necessarily mean you are making a better beer because you let it separate naturally.
« Last Edit: August 26, 2017, 12:27:37 PM by majorvices »

Offline Lazy Ant Brewing

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Re: How long do you cold crash your beer
« Reply #2 on: August 26, 2017, 01:39:20 PM »
I brew brown ales, porters, and stouts.  I don't have a centrifuge or filtering ability.  My intent is to drop out most of the solids and chill haze so I can bottle carbonate without a lot of traub for CO2 to attach to resulting in over-carbonation.

The last batch I made, I tried to hurry the cold crash process and got bottle gushers although no bottle grenades.

I just had a lot of sediment and ended up dumping most of the batch.

I would think 2 days at 34 F would be adequate, but still would like more info on this.

Thanks
 
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Offline tommymorris

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How long do you cold crash your beer
« Reply #3 on: August 26, 2017, 02:56:10 PM »
I agree 2 days of cold crash to get the majority of yeast and particulates out of the beer then package.

I have been using gravity to clear lately. 2 weeks in the keg and light lagers are crystal clear and tasty.

I do fine in the kettle.

PS. I drink a lot of Majorvices (Keith's) beer and his methods work.
« Last Edit: August 26, 2017, 05:47:29 PM by alestateyall »

Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: How long do you cold crash your beer
« Reply #4 on: August 26, 2017, 03:21:28 PM »
I have been using 30F for my lagering, the colder the better up to a point. With time the beers can look like they are filtered.
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Offline denny

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Re: How long do you cold crash your beer
« Reply #5 on: August 26, 2017, 04:28:58 PM »
3-7 days at 33F.  Length depends on when I get around to kegging.
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Offline BrewBama

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How long do you cold crash your beer
« Reply #6 on: August 26, 2017, 09:20:09 PM »
I rack from fermenter to keg then cold crash. I cold crash until I need the keg which is usually one to three weeks. If I need it in one week I fine with gelatin after a couple daze. If I don't need it right away I let time in the cold handle the fining for me. I do this out of necessity because I have only one stainless fermenter and I like to free it up for the next brew.  I cold crash in a separate temp controlled freezer than I ferment in which allows me to ramp up temps late in the ferment process while maintaining the cold crash temps.


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Offline brewsumore

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Re: How long do you cold crash your beer
« Reply #7 on: August 27, 2017, 02:56:16 AM »
I temp control ferment normally two buckets at a time, in a dedicated ferment fridge.  If I am making a beer with a lot of suspended yeast such as a Belgian, or using a low flocc yeast I remove the blowoff tube from where it fits in the lid and replace it with a rubber or silicone stopper while cold crashing, before racking to kegs.  I learned the hard way that when you change the ferment chamber from warm to cold and have a filled airlock in place it sucks that liquid into your beer.  Ewww!  Still, physics is physics and so o2 is going to bypass the stopper and what previously was a solid co2 blanket over your beer is now partially diffused with oxygen.  I don't think I'm OCD but especially with hoppy beers I see oxygen as the enemy, and so limit my cold crash to 24 hrs at 30F.  I keep my kegerator cold (at 34F) so a little yeast in the keg, what doesn't come out at the first pour, isn't going to matter. I hope that's not too much detail!

I too fine in the kettle with whirfloc.
« Last Edit: August 27, 2017, 03:00:07 AM by brewsumore »

Offline majorvices

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Re: How long do you cold crash your beer
« Reply #8 on: August 27, 2017, 11:45:28 AM »
I brew brown ales, porters, and stouts.  I don't have a centrifuge or filtering ability.  My intent is to drop out most of the solids and chill haze so I can bottle carbonate without a lot of traub for CO2 to attach to resulting in over-carbonation.

The last batch I made, I tried to hurry the cold crash process and got bottle gushers although no bottle grenades.

I just had a lot of sediment and ended up dumping most of the batch.

I would think 2 days at 34 F would be adequate, but still would like more info on this.

Thanks
 

Sorry, didn't mean to make that too complicated. I don't even think it is a good idea to filter necessarily at homebre level (but a little bitty centrifuge would be sweeeet! ;) ) Fining though.... a little bit of gelatin can work wonders in as little as 34-48 hours. I think you are fine with that period of cold crashing especially for those beer styles. If you were brewing pale lagers or kölsch you would need a little extra help if you wanted to speed up the clarification process was what my point was. If you don't mind a moderate haze then it doesn't take long to get the beers fairly clear cold crashing for several days.

I'll add, certain yeasts will be beneficial in speeding up cold crashing time as well. Some English strains in particular will floc out almost immediately after fermentation leaving a near brilliant beer with almost no need of fining or filtrartion.

Offline old.va.brewer

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Re: How long do you cold crash your beer
« Reply #9 on: September 03, 2017, 03:01:10 PM »
What's the minimum time to cold crash?  If you go longer is there any additional benefit?

Thanks in advice for your advice.
I find from talking to folks, it really makes a difference in what you are using to chill your beer. If you have the ability to lower the temp. to 29-33 degrees Rapidly with good refrigeration, then you will receive the fastest and of course the best results in 36-48 hours. I use a freezer with a digital temperature control.
 But a cold box or refrigerator will not get you to those temps. Rapidly and will take longer to reach it's coldest temp. After fermentation is complete Use a good fining agent that matches your beer style. I use Polyclare  On Lagers and Pilsners and Isinglass on all my ales. Also remember many fining agents will also drop out your yeast. And as another said, use a blow off not a air lock.
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Offline David

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Re: How long do you cold crash your beer
« Reply #10 on: September 04, 2017, 01:04:33 PM »
"And as another said, use a blow off not a air lock."

Sorry, I'm new to brewing...could you explain why?

Thanks.   

Offline factory

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Re: How long do you cold crash your beer
« Reply #11 on: September 08, 2017, 04:30:37 PM »
"And as another said, use a blow off not a air lock."

Sorry, I'm new to brewing...could you explain why?

Thanks.   

I think what they are referring to is that when you cool down a beer from fermentation temp to cold crash/lager temps, that the pressure inside the fermenter lowers and creates suction.  That will suck out all of the sanitizer in the airlock into your beer.  Could cause some off-flavor problems.  I just put a stopper in the airlock hole so almost no air gets in.  To date, I've never had a problem with the stopper getting sucked in, or too much suction that would prevent opening the lid.  I ferment in a stainless bucket with a lid.  Not sure if anything unusual would happen if using this method with a glass carboy.

Offline Pricelessbrewing

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Re: How long do you cold crash your beer
« Reply #12 on: September 08, 2017, 04:36:57 PM »
At least 2-3 days, but I'm not usually in rush to end cold crashing unless I need to keg it and get the beer flowing.