Quick turn around on a beer with minimal cloudiness was the goal. I brewed an ~5% ABV Saison on a Sunday, and served it on Friday – naturally carbed. As a scientist I know better than to change more than one variable but I did it anyway. First off, I fermented in a keg for the first time. I had a 5 psi pressure relief valve for the first 3 days, and then swapped it out for a 15 psi valve for the last two. So that allows me to ferment fast and carbonate, then next thing was how to deal with all of the yeast in suspension (I’m not a hefe-weizen fan). One could cold crash, but that takes extra time, especially when carbing naturally. My solution was to sequester the yeast inside of dialysis tubing. This is used in labs, typically when purifying proteins to do a buffer exchange. The membrane allows small molecules like salt, *sugars* and alcohol to freely pass, but most proteins are too big to pass through the membrane. So I reasoned that I could put the yeast inside and they would still have access to all of the sugars but then I wouldn’t have to deal with pouring a cloudy beer.
I brewed up an ~1.048 Saison and transferred it to a keg. I had autoclaved some dialysis tubing and then used a funnel to pour in a yeast slurry from a previous batch (it is like a sausage casing and comes in a variety of diameters – mine is a little bigger than hot dog size). I then tied it up and tossed it in the keg. I left quite a bit of room in the tubing to allow for expansion just in case. It worked just fine! Unfortunately my funneling and tying technique was not the best as some yeast got spilled on the outside so there was a little bit of yeast that ended up in direct contact with the wort so the final product was a little cloudy. I got home from work on Friday and put the keg on ice and tapped it 1 hr later. The keg was empty in a couple hours (summertime).
I need to try it again, but this time be more careful with my putting the yeast in the tubing to see if I can get a pretty clear, drinkable beer in just one week.
I wonder how well it would work to pull out the tubing after one week, and put it into a new batch?