Author Topic: Too Little Time for a Cream Ale?  (Read 1571 times)

Offline miguelpanderland

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Too Little Time for a Cream Ale?
« on: November 09, 2011, 02:15:11 PM »
Working on being prepared for the usual invasion of relatives. 

Is two weeks to short to pull off a cream ale to have available for those that don't like brew with a lot of flavor?

Offline James Lorden

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Re: Too Little Time for a Cream Ale?
« Reply #1 on: November 09, 2011, 02:25:50 PM »
I think you could pull it off.  If it were me I'd run it through the filter or if you don't have one then fine with gelatin just to speed up the clearing process.
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Offline davidgzach

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Re: Too Little Time for a Cream Ale?
« Reply #2 on: November 09, 2011, 03:16:43 PM »
Pitch a lot of yeast so it ferments quickly.......
Dave Zach

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Re: Too Little Time for a Cream Ale?
« Reply #3 on: November 09, 2011, 03:32:21 PM »
Are you kegging or bottling? obviously if you're bottling you won't have time for carb/conditioning. If kegging, just increase your pitch size. You can increase your ferm temp too, but with the obvious increase in ester formation.

Offline miguelpanderland

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Re: Too Little Time for a Cream Ale?
« Reply #4 on: November 10, 2011, 06:45:55 AM »
Hmmm.  Getting a good vibe here.

I would be kegging for sure.  I've never used gelatin before.  How does that aspect work?

Offline davidgzach

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Re: Too Little Time for a Cream Ale?
« Reply #5 on: November 10, 2011, 06:55:43 AM »
I would ferment it out, crash cool for a day, keg, pressurize and you are ready to serve in 2-3 days!   ;)
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Offline James Lorden

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Re: Too Little Time for a Cream Ale?
« Reply #6 on: November 10, 2011, 07:02:44 AM »
Gelatin - I have read a many different peoples opinion.  Heres what I do and I have good results.  I use knox gelatin packs that you can buy in the grocery store next to the jello and pudding mix.  I generally use half a packet of gelatin per 5 gallons.  I start by boiling 2 cups of water to sanitize then allow the water to sit until it reaches between 170 - 160 degrees.  At that point I add the gelatin and mix.  I let that sit for another 5 minutes or so.  Next add the gelatin mixture to your CHILLED beer.  I try to get it as cold as possible to help the gelatin work.  Let that sit for three to 5 days then rack to the keg.

Here is what I'd shoot for if I had 14 days.  Make the beer in the 1.048 to 1.050 range.  Pitch lots of healthy yeast (use a clean fermenter like 001)  pitch cool like 65 but after 2 days start to aggressivly ramp up the temps to around 70 -72 (you can use a standard houshold heating pad for this).  Get your fermenter crash cooled on day 10 then toss in your gelatin.  Transfer to the keg on day 14 and speed gas to carbonate.

Good luck!
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Offline wingnut

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Re: Too Little Time for a Cream Ale?
« Reply #7 on: November 10, 2011, 07:05:51 AM »
What I have done for a two week Cream Ale is pitched on top of a yeast cake from prev. batch... (cal ale in this case...although I prefer a kolsch yeast..but that will take too long).   Ferment at room temp (65 to 70F in my basement) for 8 days, check gravity to make sure it has bottomed out... transfer to keg and then add BIOFINE CLEAR, put it on the CO2 in the fridge and give it two or three days.  Biofine works similar to gelatin or other finings, but acts pretty quick and is easy to use.   

No biofine clear? use other finings.   You may even be able to get away with just cold crashing the yeast, but I find the yeast flavor is still high after just two weeks if I do not use finings.  If you are going to just cold crash, maybe try an english strain that flocks out quicker at cold temps.

No yeast cake?  Make a big starter or use two tubes/packs of yeast. 

Note that with the finings, the first one to three glasses of beer may be cloudy due to all the yeast settleing out.  After pulling one to three glasses, things should clear up.

Good luck!
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Offline gmac

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Re: Too Little Time for a Cream Ale?
« Reply #8 on: November 11, 2011, 07:08:38 AM »
A lot of my beers are in the 1.055 range and my standard practice is to use a 3L starter, ferment for 2 weeks (check FG), keg, cool and fine (1 tsp of gelatin dissolved in hot water).  Throw the pressure on to force and drink the next day.  Not ideal but good enough for my in-laws...

Offline ynotbrusum

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Re: Too Little Time for a Cream Ale?
« Reply #9 on: November 12, 2011, 12:04:41 PM »
Drew Beechum has an article in this month's edition of Zymurgy magazine on express (quick to go from boil to drink) beers.  He also suggests using a Randall to filter and serve all in one.  That would be too much for a cream ale, though.

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Offline a10t2

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Re: Too Little Time for a Cream Ale?
« Reply #10 on: November 12, 2011, 12:18:00 PM »
Unless they're dry-hopped, I'm drinking most of my average-gravity ales in the 15-20 day range. Standard pitching rate, it should reach FG after 3-4 days. Cold crash it about day 7, rack to keg around day 10, shake it to carbonate for 2-3 days, let it rest 2-3 days to clear, pour off sediment and start serving. Using a fairly flocculent yeast strain (1272 for most things), the beer will be bright by that point - no filtration or finings required.
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Offline ynotbrusum

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Re: Too Little Time for a Cream Ale?
« Reply #11 on: November 12, 2011, 01:16:03 PM »
I am chilling a 10 gallon batch of cream ale right now.  I will give your method a try, Sean.  If I can turn these light ales in 2 weeks, that would cut my usual process in half.  I am using US-05, so maybe it won't clear quite that quick, but I could always use gelatin....

I never even check gravities until after 2-3 weeks, usually, so I didn't know it would finish in that kind of time frame (plus I am usually pushing the lower limits on the temperature range for yeast).  But I will go with a low 60's on this one and see what I get.

 ;)
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