From the HBD Archive
From: mds@wang.WANG.COM (Marc San Soucie)
Subject: Stirring, Long Ferment, Bottles
Date: 1989-11-16 20:23:24 GMT

Patrick Stirling writes:

> I don't like the idea of stirring, it sound too risky to me, and
> slooshing in a cup or so of rehydrated yeast should cause plenty of
> turbulence by itself. You wouldn't want those little yeasties to
> get spread out and lonely in all that wort after all, would you?!

Heavens! The lonelier they are, the more vigorously they go at it when the
boy yeasties meet the girl yeasties, and the more yeasties you get, and the
better the fermentation! Peace, Love, Yeast!

Stirring is a Good Thing. I use a sanitized spatula, and whisk up a good froth
in the cooled wort, so the yeast will have a good oxygen supply during the
initial stages of fermentation. Considering that so many professionals ferment
in open tanks, I hardly see the harm.

Stuart Crawford writes:

> Despite being urged to "Relax, don't worry, have a homebrew", I'm a bit
> concerned about the batch currently undergoing secondary fermentation.
> This batch (San Francisco Steam style) is being held at a relatively constant
> 60 degrees farenheit, and contains a *lager* yeast. The primary fermentation
> was vigorous, and I transferred to the secondary after about 4 days.
> What worries me is that after 3 weeks in the secondary fermenter, there is
> *still* a gentle, but constant, stream of bubbles emerging... indicating that
> fermentation is not complete.

My two all-time fermentation winners are a recently bottled lager - four months
in the fridge at 55 degrees, and an amber ale which has sat happily at 60-70
for five months now. I am a lazy bastard of a brewer, too stubborn to buy a
turkey baster to use in testing the S.G. of the beer, so for all I know the
ale was done three months ago. It is still bubbling a trifle, but as others
have noted, that doesn't always mean anything. If I was good about my
sanitization, the ale should be fine still. The lager is downright yummy.

Ed Falk writes:

> Where can I get empty bottles? My friends are just about tapped out
> and when I go to bars and ask them, they just look at me funny.

I was lucky enough to find a bar run by a guy who thought home-brewing was
the damned strangest thing he'd ever heard of, but if I really wanted them,
sure, take 12 cases for $20.

The best technique, though, is to make good enough beer that people come to
you with bottles, rather than you having to hunt for them. I usually found
that a case-of-bottles-to-a-six-pack-of-beer ratio worked wonders. I got
cheap and cut it back to four bottles when my supply of empties got too big.
But since the beer was better, nobody called the cops.

Marc San Soucie
The John Smallbrewers
Massachusetts
mds@wang.wang.com

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