How long for conditioning?

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by Bgiebels, Apr 6, 2017.

  1. Bgiebels

    Bgiebels New Member

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    Hello everyone!

    I recently brewed a Chocolate Oatmeal Stout, left it in the primary fermenter for 2 weeks, and then put it in the keg. We tried it a few days later. The beer is/was about 7.5% ABV and was decent... except for a strong aftertaste which I have associated with beers with higher alcohol content.

    Well I've had to travel for the last 2-3 weeks and haven't had the opportunity to drink anymore of it... until today. Surprisingly, the strong aftertaste was gone.

    So my questions are:
    • How long should you condition the beer?
    • Does it matter what you condition it in (mine was in the keg)?
    • How long is too long? - I've heard of guys setting beer aside for over 6 months... I've also heard that beer goes bad after a few months...
    Thanks, in advance, for the guidance on this!
     
  2. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    Brace yourself. Answers to this question are like snowflakes.
     
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  3. chub1

    chub1 Active Member

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    I mostly bottle but can say stout's of a higher strength would benefit from some storage
     
  4. Bgiebels

    Bgiebels New Member

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    LOL, that is funny... I'm afraid it will be true, but funny, but funny just the same. Thanks!
     
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  5. Mark D Pirate

    Mark D Pirate Well-Known Member

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    How long to condition ? Try a bottle now and then and keep notes , will vary on style , recipe and storage conditions
     
  6. Head First

    Head First Well-Known Member

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    Yup, then when you brew it again you will know how long to let it rest.
    Usually darker or stronger takes a little longer.
     
  7. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    It all varies of course depending upon style.
     
  8. nzbrew

    nzbrew Active Member

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    I just had the same experience with a 7.5% American Brown. After about 4 weeks it tasted green - now at 3 months it's amazing!

    Dark and or strong needs a couple months to mellow. Hoppy beers and wheat beers only a couple of weeks - need to be drunk young.
     
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  9. BoomerBrian

    BoomerBrian Active Member

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    Stout will get better with time. I would say just sit on it and try every few weeks and take tasting notes of what changes.
     
  10. Ozarks Mountain Brew

    Staff Member

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    with any dark beer the rule I go by is its not done if you can still taste individual grain flavors, they will meld together and make a great beer over time, now over carbing a dark beer is not what you want so keeping a dark beer kegged too long can ruin the flavor but that can easily be fixed
     
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  11. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    Short answer, as long as it takes. Long answer, see short answer. I've had beers taste like swamp water when fresh and irresistable in a couple of months. Flavors balance, mute, edges round off, oxidation (yes, some can be beneficial as long as you don't get the "wet cardboard" variety), all work together to make the beer more drinkable as time goes by. And the higher the alcohol, the stronger the smoothing effect.
     
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  12. Starter Hops

    Starter Hops Member

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    The lesson I learned on conditioning: don't plan a brew a month before a holiday and expect the beer to be done. I did a porter this way for Thanksgiving. It had a noticeable astringency. The (very few) bottles I had left over that I sampled after New Years Day (+40 days) made me wish I sat on the entire batch until then.
     
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  13. Myndflyte

    Myndflyte Active Member

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    As several have already said, it totally depends on style. Wheat beers are good after 2 weeks. Barleywine could take a year or two. I bet with your stout, if you could hold off 4-6 months, you'd really taste it shining through.
     

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