Author Topic: Fined Beer not bright  (Read 2897 times)

Offline gimmeales

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Fined Beer not bright
« on: March 02, 2011, 10:13:15 PM »
Fined an all Maris Otter Old Ale with gelatin last week (in primary) and sample drawn yesterday is still hazy as all get-out.  London III (1318) is the yeast and I've got a nice solid cake on the bottom, so wondering what's going on.  Can't fit the large carboy in my fridge to cool crash it, so wondering if I'll just be stuck with haze this time around?  I'll be bottling this beer, so it will eventually drop bright, just wanted to be admire it's dark ruby-brown color to the fullest

A SMaSH IPA brewed with the same base malt dropped bright as a new dime in the chilled keg in about a week (also fined with gelatin) - do I just need to wait longer with the current beer at ~63f?

Cheers,
- Ryan

Offline skyler

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Re: Fined Beer not bright
« Reply #1 on: March 02, 2011, 10:54:46 PM »
Gelatin doesn't work at room temperature, only cold. You could try isinglass, which I think will work at room temperature.

Offline jeffy

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Re: Fined Beer not bright
« Reply #2 on: March 03, 2011, 05:20:39 AM »
Gelatin doesn't work at room temperature, only cold. You could try isinglass, which I think will work at room temperature.

I recently used isinglass to clear a melomel and was surprised at how well it worked.  It came in a two part application, both liquids in little plastic pouches.  Add one part by itself, wait 45 minutes and add the other part mixed in hot water.  I waited one day or so and got clear mead!  I was afraid of pectin haze from the key limes in it but I was worrying for no apparent reason.
Jeff Gladish, Tampa (989.3, 175.1 Apparent Rennarian)
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Offline majorvices

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Re: Fined Beer not bright
« Reply #3 on: March 03, 2011, 05:35:54 AM »
Fined an all Maris Otter Old Ale with gelatin last week (in primary) and sample drawn yesterday is still hazy as all get-out.  London III (1318) is the yeast and I've got a nice solid cake on the bottom, so wondering what's going on.  Can't fit the large carboy in my fridge to cool crash it, so wondering if I'll just be stuck with haze this time around?  I'll be bottling this beer, so it will eventually drop bright, just wanted to be admire it's dark ruby-brown color to the fullest

A SMaSH IPA brewed with the same base malt dropped bright as a new dime in the chilled keg in about a week (also fined with gelatin) - do I just need to wait longer with the current beer at ~63f?

Cheers,
- Ryan

pH is more often than not the determiner of clear beer. Did you check the pH or make any adjustments to your water? If you pH was off no amount of fining agent will brighten your beer.
Cowboy. Pirate. Brewer.

Offline tomsawyer

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Re: Fined Beer not bright
« Reply #4 on: March 03, 2011, 06:12:02 AM »
Gelatin doesn't work at room temperature, only cold. You could try isinglass, which I think will work at room temperature.

I recently used isinglass to clear a melomel and was surprised at how well it worked.  It came in a two part application, both liquids in little plastic pouches.  Add one part by itself, wait 45 minutes and add the other part mixed in hot water.  I waited one day or so and got clear mead!  I was afraid of pectin haze from the key limes in it but I was worrying for no apparent reason.

I've never heard of a two part isinglass, you sure it wasn't SuperKleer?  Isinglass is just fish bladder gelatin.
Lennie
Hannibal, MO

Offline jeffy

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Re: Fined Beer not bright
« Reply #5 on: March 03, 2011, 07:51:15 AM »
Gelatin doesn't work at room temperature, only cold. You could try isinglass, which I think will work at room temperature.

I recently used isinglass to clear a melomel and was surprised at how well it worked.  It came in a two part application, both liquids in little plastic pouches.  Add one part by itself, wait 45 minutes and add the other part mixed in hot water.  I waited one day or so and got clear mead!  I was afraid of pectin haze from the key limes in it but I was worrying for no apparent reason.

I've never heard of a two part isinglass, you sure it wasn't SuperKleer?  Isinglass is just fish bladder gelatin.

It was the first I'd seen it, too.  Here's what it looked like, but I bought it at my LHBS
http://www.rebelbrewer.com/shoppingcart/products/Isinglass-%252d-2oz.html
Jeff Gladish, Tampa (989.3, 175.1 Apparent Rennarian)
Homebrewing since 1990
AHA member since 1991, now a lifetime member
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Offline jeffy

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Re: Fined Beer not bright
« Reply #6 on: March 03, 2011, 08:06:58 AM »
Gelatin doesn't work at room temperature, only cold. You could try isinglass, which I think will work at room temperature.

I recently used isinglass to clear a melomel and was surprised at how well it worked.  It came in a two part application, both liquids in little plastic pouches.  Add one part by itself, wait 45 minutes and add the other part mixed in hot water.  I waited one day or so and got clear mead!  I was afraid of pectin haze from the key limes in it but I was worrying for no apparent reason.

I've never heard of a two part isinglass, you sure it wasn't SuperKleer?  Isinglass is just fish bladder gelatin.

It was the first I'd seen it, too.  Here's what it looked like, but I bought it at my LHBS
http://www.rebelbrewer.com/shoppingcart/products/Isinglass-%252d-2oz.html

Oops.  I stand corrected.  The stuff I bought and used was called Super Kleer KC.  It isn't Isinglass, but it did work really well.
"Liquor Quik Super-Kleer K.C. is a 2-stage Euro-fining which BlueStem Winery has come to recommend to its wine making customers in most circumstances.This fining contains two pouches, one of kieselsol and another of chitosan. This fining works by creating both strong positive and strong negative charges in the wine. This creates larger yeast clumping and faster clearing."
Jeff Gladish, Tampa (989.3, 175.1 Apparent Rennarian)
Homebrewing since 1990
AHA member since 1991, now a lifetime member
BJCP judge since 1995

Offline tomsawyer

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Re: Fined Beer not bright
« Reply #7 on: March 03, 2011, 09:01:52 AM »
I've used SuperKleer on my wines and it does work very well.  I used it on one beer so far, seems to have done a decent job.  I've read where it doesn't work so well at lower temps, so if your protein is in solution at room temp then I don't know that it would pull it out via charge interaction.
Lennie
Hannibal, MO

Offline gimmeales

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Re: Fined Beer not bright
« Reply #8 on: March 03, 2011, 10:23:18 AM »
ahh shoot, didn't realize that about gelatin not working warm. 

majorvices: I did make some small water adjustments (I have very soft clean water), but mash ph was good (~5.3 iirc).  Is this what you're referring to?

So if it's ph, I'm hosed, but at this point with a highly flocculant yeast and 6-wks in primary, I'm pretty sure it's protein rather that yeast making things cloudy.  Would that affect whether isinglass\super-kleer\etc is a better option?


Offline skyler

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Re: Fined Beer not bright
« Reply #9 on: March 03, 2011, 12:03:34 PM »
Do you keg? If so, you can get it clear in the keg this way:

1) Keg the beer
2) When the beer has gotten cold (after 24 hours or so in the keg), add gelatin solution to the keg
3) repressurize the keg and purge the oxygen
4) give keg a little shake
5) wait 48 hours and pour off the first pint or so of cloudy, mucky beer

After that, the beer will be pretty clear, but it will get completely clear after a week or so (sometimes more, sometimes less)

Offline tomsawyer

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Re: Fined Beer not bright
« Reply #10 on: March 03, 2011, 12:22:20 PM »
SuperKleer has both a positive and a negative component so I think it helps drop stuff a little better than isinglass/gelatin which only sticks to negatively charged molecules.  Yeast typically has neagative charges on its cell surface, proteins do too but it depends on the isoelectric point of the protein whether it is charged or not.  I think any of the finings have a certain amount of utility just based on the fact that they cause some coagulation of small particles into larger particles that in turn drag stuff with them to the bottom of the container.
Lennie
Hannibal, MO

Offline spikedhelmet

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Re: Fined Beer not bright
« Reply #11 on: March 03, 2011, 02:00:52 PM »
My vote is for SuperKleer.  It has worked on both my wines and beer.  Good stuff and, usually, very quick clearing.

Offline gordonstrong

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Re: Fined Beer not bright
« Reply #12 on: March 03, 2011, 02:40:04 PM »
Super-Kleer is my fining of choice.  The positive/negative combo works on just about anything.  Started using it on meads, but use it on beers that need it.  Pricy, but it works wonders.  Chilling/time can still help, though, especially getting it to pack down to minimize racking loss.  It's gravity that's doing the work.

I'd be more concerned about Maris Otter not clearing.  You might want to switch maltsters or lots.  Crisp MO clears bright for me every time.   OTOH, I've had bags of Munton's MO that never clear.  Life's too short to use crappy grain.  You might also want to check your mash pH, calcium levels, and mash rests.  All those can impact clarity.  As can your breaks, and how you deal with them.  Plus your yeast selection.  Poor clarity can be caused by many things; not all fining agents will help, depending on the cause.

Gelatin is better suited to lagers due to temperature.  Not surprising it didn't help.
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Offline tomsawyer

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Re: Fined Beer not bright
« Reply #13 on: March 03, 2011, 05:26:46 PM »
Glad to hear the SuperKleer option is preferred by experienced brewers.  It comes with most wine kits.

I bought a quart of each component (kieselsol and chitosan) of SuperKleer for my wine work.  Can't remember for sure but I think it was Northern Brewer.  Its a lot cheaper like this.

One of the major wine kit producers uses only a larger dose of chitosan.  They utilize the yeast as the negatively charged component.  It works just as well as the one-two combo, but I like the two part system.
Lennie
Hannibal, MO

Offline gimmeales

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Re: Fined Beer not bright
« Reply #14 on: March 04, 2011, 08:46:25 AM »
Thanks for the input everyone.  Gordon, this is a sack of Crisp's so sounds like it's maybe an issue with a particular lot (as Kai was asking about in an earlier thread on Crisp's MO).

I will look into super-kleer from all the recommendations.  I normally keg so the gelatin probably would have done the trick except that I bottle my strong ales for long-term aging.

One thing I'm wondering is: with the current gelatin addition, will the bottles drop bright (with a little extra sediment) after refrigerating, or has all the added gelatin now sunk to the bottom of the fermenter?