Excessive foaming

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by FedoraDave, Sep 3, 2019.

  1. FedoraDave

    FedoraDave Member

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    I'm going to be brewing my holiday porter soon, to be ready for the winter season, and I've been plagued by excessive foaming when the bottles are opened.

    The recipe includes whole cloves in the final minutes of the boil, and orange zest and coarsely broken cinnamon sticks during secondary fermentation.

    Last year I cold crashed it, and set the bottles in the fridge several days before serving, in the hopes that it would settle things down, and it did help some, but there is still a danger of excessive foaming when the bottles are uncapped, and an enormous head forming during the pour.

    I assume it's very small particles creating nucleation points, and I have no filtering mechanism to remove these. I use Whirlfloc at the end of my boils, but is there something else I can use that can reduce or eliminate this problem?
     
  2. Mase

    Mase Well-Known Member

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    First, are you sure that fermentation was complete prior to bottling (same FG for 3 days), and how well did your yeast attenuate (ex. 1.044 OG, down to 1.013 FG). Second, did you use too much priming sugar?
     
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  3. Drewfus1

    Drewfus1 Member

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    I think Mase is looking in the right direction on this. It sounds like over-carbonation to me.
     
  4. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    My vote as well. Nucleation sites is a possibility but always remember: If you hear the thunder of hooves, don't expect a herd of zebras. Go with the most likely cause first.
     
  5. Bubba Wade

    Bubba Wade Well-Known Member

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    I used to use 1 oz. priming sugar (either corn sugar or sucrose) per gallon of beer for carbonation. Recently, I have reduced it a bit, to somewhere around 0.75 oz per gallon.

    The beer priming calculator on the BF site is pretty good. If you haven't read their write-up on priming, it's pretty good.

    Good luck.
     
  6. Doz

    Doz New Member

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  7. FedoraDave

    FedoraDave Member

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    I've never had a problem with the priming software I've been using when it comes to the other styles I've used it on. I mostly keg, but some batches I bottle, for competitions, a saison that I want to have high carbonation (and doesn't foam, BTW).

    As this is a porter, I know the carb level is supposed to be lower than, say a pale ale, and the software hasn't let me down yet. I use Northern Brewer's calculator, in the interest of full disclosure.

    To answer Mase's questions, 1) Yes 2)pretty darn good, and 3)not according to the priming software.

    Thanks for the responses, and I'll do a compare/contrast on priming software to see if there's anything wonky going on.
     
  8. Drewfus1

    Drewfus1 Member

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    How many volumes did you carbonate your porter to last time? I'm guessing the recipe has lots of malt and grains that help with head retention and foam stability. With that kind of a beer you can overshoot on the priming easily to create a foam bomb. Keep it at or below 2.0 volumes and you should be fine.
     

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