The Beer Watcher: Brewing, part 2

Technically, I believe the process is called “racking.” Neither Steve B. nor I were there, so here’s the report from our beer master, Bill H-D:

Ok, the beer has been racked to the secondary fermentation vessel. All went well. No spills, no drops. Our still immature little IPA has quite a lot of character already – it is way more hoppy and “dry” tasting than Taste the Joy was. No off flavors or spoilage that I could pick up during the taste test either. So we are on track. In about 10 days, I’ll start testing the specific gravity to see where we are with alcohol content.

Bill uploaded pictures to his flickr account; here they are:

racking 1
First, there’s the cleaning (I hope he cleaned the tub before this…)

racking 2
Second, there’s the “dry hopping,” where Bill is pouring even more dry hops into this big glass bottle called a carboy.

racking 3
Here Bill is preparing the siphoning set-up, the so-called “racking” of the wort from the fermentation bucket to the carboy, which is now on the floor.

racking 4
“Siphon action,” as Bill labels it.

racking 5
Here the wort is getting sucked out of the fermentation bucket. That residue on the side of the bucket at the top? Flavor crystals, my friend.

racking 6
This is Bill taste-testing the beer– the label on Bill’s Flickr site is “taste test, mmmm, hoppy!”

racking 7
And here is the wort in the carboy ready for secondary fermentation, which will generate even more rich beer-y goodness.

As witnessed in photos, it looks to me like this is what Bill said it was: probably the least time-consuming part of the process. Right now, it looks like we’ll bottle a couple weekends from now. Stay tuned….

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2 Responses to The Beer Watcher: Brewing, part 2

  1. billhd says:

    This process took about an hour, including time to clean and sanitize on the front end and the time to clean up, wash the primary bucket, etc. The siphoning goes pretty fast – maybe 15 minutes all told to get the beer from one place to the other.

  2. Andre says:

    I certainly hope we all get to try it. I’m fascinated by this process. (And by that sweet sweet siphoning action!)

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