Debbie Goes To Secondary

Today was a cold, windy day in the D. In fact it has been a very cold week. I tried to stay inside and warm,  but we had to go get our car hauler.

This weekend we are taking our Jeep up north to pre run some trails in preparation of Michigan’s largest winter off road event,  Snofari. Offroading is my other big hobby.  Maybe some day I’ll go into more about that.

Before we left I had a little time to go down and check on the Debbie Does Amarillo Dirty Blonde Ale. Today marked four days into primary fermentation.  The CO2 blow off bubbles have slowed down a bit so I figured it was time to drain off the trub.

One of the neat things about fermenting in a conical as opposed to carboys or buckets is that going from primary to secondary is as easy as opening a valve.

First off, trub, what’s that?

Trub is the dead and dormant yeast, hop residue, and anything else that falls out off suspension over the fermentation process.  It’s a peanut butter like sludge that forms that the bottom of your fermentation vessel. Common practice is to get the beer off of this trub shortly after the bulk of fermentation finishes because it can impart off flavors into your beer. Usually this happens four days to a week into fermentation.

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In that picture you can see a couple things.  First off the bottom outlet is the valve that gets opened to drain off the trub. Second in the stainless cup is the 16 ounces of trub that I drained.  I like to drain it as soon as I can, otherwise it begins to compact and becomes harder to get out.

But today wasn’t just yucky work. Today was also the first real taste test for the beer!  The upper port is a port that allows you to pull samples without risking contamination of the beer.  It’s also just  as easy as opening a valve.  Here is what came out.

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Per my hydrometer, the specific gravity was down to a 1.008 from an original of 1.046. This gives us an ABV of 5%. Not too bad, it should be very easy drinking. No sense in wasting that sample. Bottoms up.

Currently the beer has a good flavor with a little sweetness and a nice malty finish.  The flavor of the Amarillo hops is there, but not an in your face way. This one is shaping up to be a good one. It just needs a little more time to condition.

 


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