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Is my beer ready?

Before we begin I need to make it clear that I am still very much a beginner. I don’t know much so please let me know all you can, I am eager to learn.

I’ve made 2 1 gal batches but the one I am currently working on (and inquiring about) is my second 5 gal batch. It is a recipe that I got from my local homebrew place and it is a milk stout. I pitched the yeast at about 76 degrees or so because it was getting late and I don’t have a wort chiller yet. Also like a big stupid ass I didn’t take a specific gravity reading (because it was getting late and I don’t have a wort chiller yet).

Anyway, everything looked honky dory except for the fact that mother nature wanted to f with me and decided to start a heat wave that same night! It was sooo hot for the next 3 days that I kept the fermentor in my AC’d room. The Krauzen started right up and it looked so perfect, continued for about 3 and a half days and then fell with the quickness. I figured that was pretty darn fast so I am being patient and just letting it sit. After 2 weeks (or so) I moved it to a secondary, still no action. It’s been about 4 days now in the secondary and I’m getting anxious to bottle it.

Questions:
Is it done? Should I just go ahead and bottle this batch?
Have any of you done a milk stout? Is this typical behavior for that type?

and
here’s the biggie…
Wort chilling… What’s the best way?
I’m kinda a buy it once kinda guy, not afraid of the price if it’s gonna work, and work well for a long time.

Thanks!
:cheers:

Take a hydrometer reading. Take another one a day or 2 later. If there’s no change, it’s done.

If you’re doing partial boils, putting the kettle in a sink full of ice water is very effective. If you’re doing full boils, an immersion chiller is probably the best bang for the buck.

ok.

Now answer me this… How did I read that answer 4 times on different threads and not realize that it was the correct solution. Am I really that thick headed?

I surprise myself sometimes.

So the immersion chiller is the way to go? Forget all those counterflow and plate chiller dilly bobs?

Immersion chillers are easy. If you get a decent one that is big enough it can be effective for full five gallon boils.

I do love my plate chiller but there are others that hate them. It is a bit more of a setup though. You need more tubing, maybe a pump if you don’t want to lift kettles of boiling wort, a ball valve on the kettle, terrific attention to detail in cleaning it…

[quote=“sammysam”]ok.

Now answer me this… How did I read that answer 4 times on different threads and not realize that it was the correct solution. Am I really that thick headed?

I surprise myself sometimes.

So the immersion chiller is the way to go? Forget all those counterflow and plate chiller dilly bobs?[/quote]

I used to have a counterflow, but the time I spent cleaning and sanitizing it made it not time effective for me. Plus, a counterflow or plate chiller really work best when used with a pump and I didn’t have one at that time. Plate chillers can be very finicky about cleaning. I found that an immersion the best balance of effectiveness, ease of use and price. I bought a 50’ roll of 3/8" copper tubing, some vinyl tubing and hose fittings and made my own.

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