Episode 84 - Answering All The Questions

drew's picture

There are a great many questions in the universe - why are we here? What are we doing? What the hell just happened with my beer?!? We'll tackle that last category, because we're terrible at moral philosophy!

Sit back, it's time for a dive through a bunch of questions!

Program Note:  In the discussion of bittering hops, Denny misspoke when he referred to cohumulone as an additional bittering factor.  What he meant to say was "humulinones".

Episode Links:

Episode Contents:

00:00:00 Opening & Our Sponsors

00:03:03 Announcements & Feedback

00:06:16 General Questions

00:22:59 Ingredient Questions

00:47:29 Process Questions

01:06:08 Recipe Questions

01:28:28 Yeast Questions

This episode is brought to you by:


American Homebrewers Association

BrewCraft USA

Brewing America Craftmeister

JaDeD BrewingJaded Brewing

Mecca Grade MaltMecca Grade Estate Malt


Wyeast Labs

YCH Hops


Interested in helping Denny and Drew with the IGOR program (aka help us run experiments!) - contact them at [email protected]. We want more Citizen Science!

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wawa's picture
Long Term Beer Storage

Gents, great episode as always. Really enjoy the show, both formats. Keep up the good work, it is appreciated.

Thought I'd share a data point to supplement your answer to the question about brewing a beer for long term storage. I brewed batch 197 in May 2000 (yes, 19 years ago) and have two bottles left. It has been yummy throughout it's lifetime. It was a partigyle brew. I called this beer All American Barleywine, with 20# pale 2-row and 4# munich dark, 4 oz 5.4% cascade for 60 min, 2 oz 5.4% cascade at knock out, wyeast american ale yeast. Ok so the munich may not make it All American, but it was American munich if that counts. (The second runnings became a pale ale which I called British Son of an American Father. Also tasty, but long gone.) I estimate it at 10.9 abv and 75 ibu. I might be talked into bringing my last tow bottles along when I see you two and Marshall in Asheville in March (sadly not enough for Jersey and Tim to have a taste).

This beer went on the yeast cake from a prior batch (probably in the same fermenter though my notes aren't clear on this). The beer was in the primary for 5 days and dropped from 1.098 to 1.020. It was in the secondary for a year and dropped to 1.016. I only recovered 4-1/2 gal from the secondary which had lots of trub including hops on the bottom. My bottling method was simply to stir in the priming sugar in a bottling bucket and fill the bottles from the bottom by gravity with a bottling wand. I did not purge the bottles with CO2 either before or after the fill. I used Grolsch bottles - not sure if that rubber gasket is more or less permeable than a crown cap.

I'm in Texas and we don't have a cellar. We don't even have cool room temperatures. This beer aged at roughly 68 f in the few winter months we have, and 74-76 f the rest of the year. We spent one year during the life of this beer in South Africa, so a friend babysat my beer at his house while we were gone. (Remarkably, it was all still there when we got back.)

I opened the third to last bottle from this batch a few months ago. It still had nice pop when I swung the cap. Not much if any hop character as you pointed out in the podcast. It definitely darkened with age. There is a bit of what you might call a sherry character, no doubt from some oxidation over time. There are also stone fruit characteristics in the nose and palate. There is a black, solid sediment in the bottle which only budges with a bit of bleach. I still find this beer tasty and somewhat sad to see it near the end of its lifetime. (I finished a batch I made in 1999 last year - different recipe but similar processing and aging characteristics.) 

So thank goodness brewing is a forgiving process. I strongly support your recommendations to purge bottles and store them in better environmental conditions than I did. The good news is that if you don't you may still end up with a good beer decades later. Don't worry!

I have also 'processed' (aka 'drank') a number of 10-15 year old meads bottled and stored similarly. One in particular which was sharply bitter from the fruit I used when young mellowed out well. All were drinkable and aged well. I made my next barleywine for cellaring last year and look forward to enjoying it for years to come.

Wade Wallinger, Kingwood TX

Reply to the question about carbonating coffee beer

There was a queston about a coffee stout not carbonating. I just experienced this and the web seemed to indicate it was the oil. My beer included cocoa nibs and coco powder as well as coffee, but once I tipped the keg so the gas in tube was in the liquid you could here the gas flowing. 

all grain, batch sparge in cooler

Great stuff as always guys,

Great stuff as always guys, Drew mentioned cream ale and mild as his favourites, are your recipes for these two posted anywhere? if not can you post them please?

drew's picture

Hey Chug, thanks for the ask - Here are my primary mild and cream ale recipes


I Dream of Jenny Cream Ale


Thank you Drew