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"Cask" ale by served w/ beer gas & stout fauce

 
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kal
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Joined: 12 Dec 2010
Posts: 4059
Location: Ottawa, Canada

Drinking: Amber Ale, West Coast IPA, Electric Pale Ale, Russian Imperial Stout, American Lager, Weizen, Irish Stout, Cream Ale

Working on: Kolsch, Electric Pale Ale (session version), Pub Ale, Firestone Walker Double Jack


PostLink    Posted: Mon Apr 30, 2012 8:53 pm    Post subject: "Cask" ale by served w/ beer gas & stout fauce Reply with quote


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I'm planning on puting a couple of stout faucets on my tower and push with 75/25 (Nitrogen/C02) blend to serve english bitters of various styles as well as a cream ale. Most of the I figure I'll have some form of ESB and Boddington's clone on these two taps.

The beer will only have the residual carbonation in it from fermentation, but pushing it through the restrictor plate in the stout faucet will hopefully knock out most of the remaning C02 and give the beer a nice creamy (guiness style) head and next to no carbonic bite.

At least that's the intent. You need a stout faucet & new regulator + tank.

Anyone ever try to 'mimmick' cask ale like this? (I know CAMRA wouldn't approve but whatever...) Wink

Note that this is very similar to what I can do today when I pour myself one of my ESB's served regularly with C02 and then I use a syringe (without a needle) to suck some up and squirt it back into the glass hard while keeping it under. It results in a nearly flat beer with creamy small bubble head.

Kal

P.S. Some will say "just use a Perlick creamer faucet". Not the same if you ask me. You still end up carb'ing and pushing the beer with 100% C02 and then the creamer function is only used in the last litle bit of the pour. So you end up with normally cabonated beer with a somewhat creamy head. Not what I want. I want the beer near flat when the style calls for it.

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steveandchris



Joined: 17 Feb 2011
Posts: 2
Location: Corfe Castle, Dorset, England


PostLink    Posted: Wed May 30, 2012 8:25 am    Post subject: Cask ale served by a faucet Reply with quote

Hi Kal,

I have this set up in the UK and it works fine, I believe I can produce a better conditioned real English ale than I can get from my local pub. I have your Electric Brewery unit with 30 USG Blickmanns, hop-rocket and chiller etc.

I usually stop the primary fermentation at about 1010 to 1012, depending on the %ABV required, to leave the real ale to produce its owns CO naturally in the secondary fermentation cask. I cask condition the beer using either a stainless steel firkin (9UKG) or 2 pins (4.5UKG). These are filled to the brim and sealed. I then leave the beer to cask condition at approx 10 to 12 degrees C (cellar temperature) for at least three weeks. This is important as the flavour change in the beer after three weeks is really amazing, the hops mellow and the beer becomes really smooth as the flavour develops. I then transfer the beer from the secondary fermentation cask into two Cornelius kegs, just using a clear beer tube filling the keg from the bottom. This way the beer is bright with no settled yeast being transferred. I then pressurize the Cornelius kegs to 12 psi, with CO2. This seems to be a good minimum pressure to ensure the beer flows well through the faucet but does add any gas into the beer.

The result is a really nice English style real ale, with a good head but no excessive gas in the beer other than that made naturally. With the beer in an inert low pressure CO2 environment it will remain in excellent condition whilst being consumed. One other important issue to note is that the CO2 or CO2/Ni gas must be food grade and come from a reputable food/drinks gas supplier.

Steve.
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kal
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Joined: 12 Dec 2010
Posts: 4059
Location: Ottawa, Canada

Drinking: Amber Ale, West Coast IPA, Electric Pale Ale, Russian Imperial Stout, American Lager, Weizen, Irish Stout, Cream Ale

Working on: Kolsch, Electric Pale Ale (session version), Pub Ale, Firestone Walker Double Jack


PostLink    Posted: Wed May 30, 2012 12:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the hints/feedback!

You mentioned that you pressurize the Cornelius kegs to 12 psi with CO2. How do you serve? Also with C02? At what pressure? I'd be concerned that over time the beer will pick up extra carbonation, especially at 12 PSI (standard serving pressure for 'regular' beers, not low carbonation 'cask' like beers).

Or do you turn down the C02 pressure significantly? (Maybe to 2-3 PSI)? You'd need pretty short lines to do that.

What sort of faucet do you use?

Kal

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steveandchris



Joined: 17 Feb 2011
Posts: 2
Location: Corfe Castle, Dorset, England


PostLink    Posted: Wed May 30, 2012 6:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Kal,

I tend to leave the CO2 pressurized at 12 psi for serving as well. I have tried dropping this to 5 - 6 psi and it still works okay, although I have not noticed any difference in the amount of gas in the beer. The beer lines are short and I just use CO2 to serve the beer. A friend of mine uses a CO2/Ni mix and has longer lines going through a chiller, but for my taste the beer is served a little too cold and in my view there is no discernable difference between the beer head and lace left on the side of the glass as it goes down.

I have another option for you, which is CAMRA approved, that you may wish to consider. I have yet to try this but have bought the parts required and haven't got round to implementing it as the above solution works fine. It is a method of applying the CO2 head to the beer at atmospheric pressure which is the ultminate goal. All the gas in the beer is then due to the brewers skill and not simply pumped in.

The set up uses a CO2 supply connected to an Aspirator, this devise allows CO2 to be supplied to the cask using an internal membrane to balance the CO2 supply to air pressure. As a demand is made on the beer in the cask the membrane is distorted due to unequal pressure and CO2 flows into the cask until the cask is equal to atmospheric pressure again; the membrane moves back into position cutting off the CO2 supply. The result is that the cask only contains CO2 but at atmospheric pressure. This solution is detailed in a CAMRA publication titled Cellarmanship by Patrick O'Neill.

Using the aspirator you can then use a traditional hand pump or just a tap. To produce a good head in pubs they often fit a sparkler to the hand pump although there are many arguments for and against this in CAMRA. This method of dispense excludes needing the Cornelius keg as the beer is pumped directly from the cask. If you use this method though you need to ensure the wheat malt content is (up to) approximately 10% in the malt bill to create a good natural head.

A useful web page for pictures and prices is A1barstuff (Cask Dispense section) for the items mentioned above.

Steve.
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kal
Forum Administrator


Joined: 12 Dec 2010
Posts: 4059
Location: Ottawa, Canada

Drinking: Amber Ale, West Coast IPA, Electric Pale Ale, Russian Imperial Stout, American Lager, Weizen, Irish Stout, Cream Ale

Working on: Kolsch, Electric Pale Ale (session version), Pub Ale, Firestone Walker Double Jack


PostLink    Posted: Wed May 30, 2012 7:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Steve! I think for now I'll stick with my stout faucets and beer gas 75/25 (Nitrogen/C02) blend but may look into something different down the road...

http://www.a1barstuff.co.uk definitely has some interesting stuff!

Kal

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