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CO2/Dry hopping in keg

Transferred 10-11 gallons of our latest IPA (cold, after a 4 day cold crash) to 2 corny kegs about a week ago. I blew some CO2 into the keg (no regulator, just opened the valve on my small tank), then filled with the cold beer on top of a muslin bag of the first round of dry hops, the hit it again with another small amount of CO2 directly from the tank (maybe 1 second of the valve open). let the dry hops sit for 4 days at ambient temp (65-70*), occasionally bleeding air off. The kegs were pretty full, but below the CO2 dip tube.

When I went to add the second round of dry hops on Monday night, I tried bleeding the kegs to get the lids off, but it was a foamy/beery mess! I’m not sure how so much foam was created, but maybe I had more CO2 trapped in there than I thought and it was absorbed back into solution? Ended up hooking up one of the kegs to my beverage line and running about 3 pints worth out of it to get rid of some of the headspace and actually get the lid off, but it was still foaming and violently spraying through the blowoff valve and the ‘CO2 - In’ connect.

Had a pint of the beer cask-style as it had a decent amount (maybe 1 volume) of CO2 dissolved in it. Tasted great, no hints of pedio/aceto or anything. What did I do wrong?

Obviously your experienced but I have to ask… was it done fermenting?
What temp did you ferment at? The cooler temp the more CO2 remains disolved.
It also did absorb some of the CO2 you purged with. Couple that with a lower fermentation temp and you can have a decently carbed beer. My lagers often come out with tons of disolved CO2.

Yeah, we did 4 days at 66*, then a week at 70* with a pretty big 2nd-gen slug of Conan yeast, then I cold crashed in the primaries (we used carboys) for 4-5 days

I guess the cold beer could have absorbed some of the CO2, but then some of it may have been pushed into the (small) headspace of the keg as it warmed from ~32* up to room temp.

The turnaround time you describe is (apparently only to me) relatively short.
I’d bet that it wasn’t totally done fermenting. What were the OG and FG readings of the brew?

Double-checked the dates, brewed on 9/6, fermented for one week at 66, one week at 70, then cold crashed. 1.065 OG, 1.011 FG, which is pretty good attenuation for Conan.

I have to say though, we do turn around a lot of our Conan-fermented IPAs with a short schedule, particularly with raising the temp up, it generally gets it to stable FG quickly and allows for a few days of diacetyl cleanup.

I am still bleeding CO2 out of these kegs twice per day. Pretty significant amount of gas coming out for 3-4 seconds (if blowoff valve is fully depressed). Going to chill tonight, hook up to the kegerator and see what gives.

I don’t think these are infected, but I suppose its a possibility. Do hops give off CO2 as they break up in solution?

Nope but they make a really good nucleation site if there is CO2 in solution so if you put hops into beer with some level of carbonation it’ll often foam up.

I’m often surprised how much CO2 will be in solution from fermentation, particularly when cold crashing before transfer. Then when you warm the beer up it all wants to come out of solution. I’ve done almost exactly the same thing as you and ran into the same issue. Not sure how to deal with it when you’ve got a 2 step dry hop but my solution has been to get the keg cold before taking out my keg dry hops.

Nope but they make a really good nucleation site if there is CO2 in solution so if you put hops into beer with some level of carbonation it’ll often foam up.

I’m often surprised how much CO2 will be in solution from fermentation, particularly when cold crashing before transfer. Then when you warm the beer up it all wants to come out of solution. I’ve done almost exactly the same thing as you and ran into the same issue. Not sure how to deal with it when you’ve got a 2 step dry hop but my solution has been to get the keg cold before taking out my keg dry hops.[/quote]

+1

The beer is infected! Ship to me for proper disposal immediately! :smiley:

Just let the beer warm up prior to racking into the keg or leave the bleeder open for a while. You having good experience with crashing prior to dry hopping? Was not game changer for me…

Fermentation schedule is nearly identical to mine. The beer was done.

[quote=“zwiller”]

You having good experience with crashing prior to dry hopping? Was not game changer for me…

The beer was done.[/quote]

This will be the first time we’ve done it this way (cold crash then dry hop). I think it depends on yeast selection as to whether it makes sense or not. We have used Conan for our last 4-5 IPAs, which is awesome, but does not floc nearly as well as Chico or other traditional American Ale yeasts. Actually, its an outright b!tch to drop out, though Kimmich from Alchemist swears he has a tried and true method of getting it to floc, which he of course won’t divulge.

Its an interesting balance to try to achieve with this yeast since I don’t want to add gelatin necessarily and strip away precious hop aromas (which the internet tells me will happen, but I’ve seen no conclusive evidence), but a lot of suspended yeast does definitely affect hop perception.

Either way, this beer is phenomenal at present and will hopefully stay that way.

Decided to forgo culturing Conan from the can and plan to try Gigayeast Conan on the next IPA. I really like HT but it is not the ultimate IPA to me. That said, wanna see if I can get some of the magic in mine but yet keep the hops more aggressive and in your face. I might even push Conan into the 80s too…

I call BS when I see it but I tend to agree with those who say gelatin strips hop mojo. Especially if you are aiming for the subtle HT type of thing. I actually think the key to HT is the yeast in suspension. It’s like hefe meets IPA. Last 2 cans I actually rolled around and roused it before drinking.

I used to do it that way all the time and now skip it for dry hopped beers and go straight into the keg at room temp, dry hop in keg(I use this from Stainless Brewing http://www.stainlessbrewing.com/Dry-Hop … p_155.html) and then chill after done dry hopping. Certainly get more yeast that comes along but it drops out just fine in the keg (and I’ve trimmed my dip tubes a bit). If I’m going to be transporting a beer I’ll push it from one keg to another.

Hmm, that intrigues me. Lawsons Double Sunshine, which to me is as good as Heady, but in a different way supposedly uses oats to get dextrins and body. My brewing partner just made a clone, and it turned out fantastical. He used US-05 as well!

I think the better IPAs are dextrin heavy. Not necessarily sweet, high FG, but thicker…

Chico dries out even modest amounts of crystal and high mash temps. Oats are ingenious idea. My favorite commercial IPA is made with chico.

and what would that be?

[quote=“zwiller”]I think the better IPAs are dextrin heavy. Not necessarily sweet, high FG, but thicker…

[/quote]

Couldn’t agree more, bigger mouthfeel. that’s why I think th Vermont IPAs are so good and have redefined the east coast IPA. Pliny is excellent, but next to those it seems pithy and borderlined astringent.

I made a Mission Street Pale clone last year and employed a 4 day dry hop towards the end of primary then dry hopped in a sealed keg at 60F for 5 days.

Didn’t have foamy beer, but the higher temp probably helped that.

My best apa to date.

Hmm, that intrigues me. Lawsons Double Sunshine, which to me is as good as Heady, but in a different way supposedly uses oats to get dextrins and body. My brewing partner just made a clone, and it turned out fantastical. He used US-05 as well![/quote]

I agree that suspended yeast may be a big part of the HT mouthfeel and flavor; the fact that you can (relatively easily) culture the yeast from the cans suggests that Alchemist doesn’t do much to drop it out, nor should they. I have been using conan a lot in the past year and don’t give a hoot if I get clear beer if it tastes great, which it does. For me, the conan yeast will drop after a good long time in a cold keg of beer but I don’t seek that out.

[quote=“Pietro”][quote=“zwiller”]I think the better IPAs are dextrin heavy. Not necessarily sweet, high FG, but thicker…

[/quote]

Couldn’t agree more, bigger mouthfeel. that’s why I think th Vermont IPAs are so good and have redefined the east coast IPA. Pliny is excellent, but next to those it seems pithy and borderlined astringent.[/quote]

That’s interesting…if I had to list the one single characteristic that separates a good IPA from a bad one, I’d have said that sensation of “thickness” is the one that makes me reach for something else. I’m definitely not saying that you’re wrong in any sense, by the way. I’d never claim to be some sort of authority, and everyone’s tastes are equally valid, of course.

That said, something about a big chunky IPA just makes me tired of drinking it, despite the extreme proliferation and popularity of that style. I also can’t stand Barleywine or big Bocks. My tastes in higher alcohol beers run to Tripels, etc, and I also love Saisons, so a big, highly-attenuated IPA like Pliny is pretty much my platonic ideal. Whatever Belgian came up with the “digestibility” maxim was really speaking my language.

I’ve begun to use the Plinian legacy grain bill in all my IPAs, although I do plan to start messing around with less-attenuative yeasts like English strains and Conan.

Eh, I’ve rambled on too long. :blah: I guess the tl;dr summary is that one man’s astringent is another’s quenching.

and what would that be?[/quote]

http://www.ratebeer.com/beer/fat-heads- ... pa/101856/

Recall that these IPAs have a large sulfate boost, which have a drying effect. Add this to the dextrins and you now have a thicker beer, yet it is perceived dry. That is the zone.

I have to say, dry hopping under pressure makes alot of sense. Gotta try that.

This.

What level of sulfate do you shoot for in your hoppy beers zwill?

LUUUUUUUUURVE me some Headhunter! Getting together in a few weeks with a buddy from Cleveland and he is bringing me a couple sixers.

@Flashman have you had Heady or any of the Vermont IPAs? There is a creaminess to them that differentiates them from West Coast. They are also crisp and dry (sulfate). Maybe dextrinous is the wrong descriptor, because I agree, typically IIPA’s are a really tricky style for me to enjoy, because they are often boozy or syrupy, either of which suck even when masked by pounds of hops.

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