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1st Time to Keg - Stupid Questions

I just received my first keg/co2 tank in the mail. I’ve been bottling up until now. The question I have is about sediment. Bottle conditioning leaves a bit of sediment at the bottom of the bottle. If I rack to the keg from the secondary, are there any issues with sediment making its way into the beer? Is the sediment just a byproduct of bottle conditioning?

Other dumb question is can I really drink it just a few days after putting it in the keg and force carbonating or should I let it age a bit longer in the keg before drinking?

Crypto

You will get some sediment. It will settle to the bottom and push out in the first pint. No worries.

How long it takes to carb and drink is a matter of personal preference. I set mine to 12 psi or so and let it sit for a couple weeks in the kegerator to condition and carb. I get good results that way. A couple weeks of conditioning makes a huge difference.

Some people jack the pressure up and shake the keg to carb quickly. I didn’t wait when I got my first keg. I cranked the pressure and shook to pour pints as quickly as possible!

I’m picking up my 4th keg this evening. I’ve been “quick” force carbing them by using the rolling method described on Dean Palmer’s website http://thebeerjournals.com/carbonation.html

I have noticed however that the last few pints I draw are the best, so I’d agree with the statement above that a bit of keg conditioning will make the beer better. Just as in fermenting, patience in kegging makes for better beer but it’s so difficult to wait isn’t it?!

Can you force carb and drink? Yes. Should you? Up to you. Without fail, every beer I have kegged has gotten better and clearer the longer it ages in the kegerator.

Guess I’ll keg and let it carbonate for a couple of weeks before drinking. Thanks for the info.

Crypto

This is correct, but note that only the stuff around the dip tube intake will be dispensed. If you move the keg, you’ll have to let it settle again (although should happen much faster) and push off sediment again.

I agree with prior statements about time in the keg producing better tasting beer. The only exception I’ve seen is an Irish Stout that I don’t think got better or worse. It was awesome after just about 3 weeks from pitching and hasn’t changed much with another 45ish days.

I’m making an Amazon Black Ale right now. Recipe came from “The Homebrewer’s Garden” book. It assumes you are bottleing. Says to ferment for 7-10 days then bottle and carbonate/age for 6-8 weeks. I figured I’d do two weeks in the primary, two weeks in the secondary, then put the ale in the keg for another week or two.

It wouldn’t hurt to rack directly to the keg from primary and skip the intermediary transfer. Less chance of oxidation and infection, plus one less thing to do. Whether you’re using another carboy or a keg, the outsome is essentially the same: bulk conditioning. Kegs make a great “secondary” vessel, since you can purge the air with CO2 and the beer is stored in complete darkness. I’d leave the beer in the fermentor for a couple weeks, then rack to the keg.

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