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Adventures in Homebrewing Part 3
This post is part 3 of our recent homebrewing adventures. You can view part 2 here.

The morning after we put our beer in the primary fermenting bucket we started to notice bubbles coming through the air lock. This was very exciting as it was a true sign that we did something right in the process. The bubbles were quite constant at times, as a series of 3-5 bubbles would come out in bursts every 5-15 seconds. This went on for a full week.

At the end of that week we noticed that the bubbling had stopped. We took this as a sign that the sugars were consumed and fermentation had halted. The instructions for the recipe said that this would occur after 1-2 weeks and then it was to be transferred to our glass carboy for secondary fermentation. Seeing that the bubbles had stopped we went for it.

We sanitized the carboy. This was a bit of a challenge because of the skinny neck, but we put the cleansing solution called B-Brite in and sloshed it around vigorously. We are most likely going to invest in a long wire brush to make cleaning it easier in the future. We also sanitized the tubing we would use. It was nice that we didn't have to worry about creating a siphon, as the tube connected right to the tap on our bucket.

Before transferring the beer to the carboy, we opened up our bottle of elderberry concentrate. After tasting it we decided to use the whole bottle. It will be interesting to see what effects this has on the five gallons of beer we are producing. We simply poured it into the carboy prior to adding the beer.

With most of our tubing and carboy ready to go, we got ready to open up the tap on our bucket. We did draw off a bit of beer into a glass first to try. It tasted quite good for what it was (like a warm, flat beer)! We got the Belgian notes we were hoping for! With that uplifting bit of news, we opened the tap and let the beer flow into the carboy. This was a lot of fun to watch.

Following all of the homebrewing instructions we have read, we were careful not to tip or disturb the primary fermentation bucket at all. While the tap wouldn't draw the liquid off the very bottom of the bucket, this was a good thing because we didn't necessarily want any of that stuff that settled out.

That was it for this phase of the process. We cleaned and fitted the air lock on the carboy and placed it where we had been storing the bucket. We used a cardboard box over top of it to keep the light out as that can really mess with the beer. The instructions said that it should sit in this secondary fermentation for two months! The waiting game began.

By Mike on March 24, 2013 at 3:00pm EDT Topic(s): beer homebrewing

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