Keg hopping: distribution of flavor

Discussion in 'Homebrewing' started by GeeL, Oct 13, 2018.

  1. GeeL

    GeeL Initiate (171) Aug 27, 2008 Massachusetts

    Just wondering: if I put some pellet hops in a metal tea ball and sink it 1/2 way down, will the flavor of the hops permeate through the whole batch?

    What if I just drop the tea ball in and sink it to the bottom?

    I cook a lot, and know it's best to stir when I add ingredients. So along those lines, what if I put the tea ball of hops in, then after a few days invert the keg one or two times?

    Actually, now that I think of it, I think that's what I'll do. But let me know your thoughts.

    Thanks.
     
  2. pweis909

    pweis909 Poo-Bah (1,755) Aug 13, 2005 Wisconsin
    Premium

    When I keg hop, hops go in a nylon bag that gets tied off and suspended using unwaxed regular dental floss that is tied is tied off on the outside handles. I put a stainless steel spoon or two in the bag to weight it down do that hops are not floating at the liquid level. I do not agitate; diffusion takes its course.
     
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  3. PortLargo

    PortLargo Devotee (435) Oct 19, 2012 Florida

    Neither do I . . . container of choice was the same nylon paint strainer bag but have found I get a little less hop debris "leaking out" when using a muslin bag. Never have inverted or suffered from lack thereof.

    For OP; a metal tea bag will certainly work, but do you have enough room? Remember those hops will really expand and if compacted you will minimize contact with the beer. I used to use one of these but quit when I found anything over about one ounce reduced the oils being absorbed:

    [​IMG]
     
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  4. Buck89

    Buck89 Poo-Bah (2,326) Feb 7, 2015 Tennessee
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  5. thebriansmaude

    thebriansmaude Initiate (68) Dec 16, 2016 Alberta (Canada)
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    I have used this approach as well, but I found that the last gallon of beer starts to pour with loads of hop debris. That being said I am using the cheapo approach and using a 'fermentasaurus' floating dip tube, not the clear beer draft dealyo...

    you mean you couldn't get more than an oz worth of dry hop character with one of those things?
     
  6. thebriansmaude

    thebriansmaude Initiate (68) Dec 16, 2016 Alberta (Canada)
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    To OP: by far the most successful keg dry hop method I have used so far is purging the keg with io-star sanitizer, pushing it all out, cracknig the top, adding a musilin bag with 4-5 oz of hops, purging some CO2 through the liquid out a couple times, then racking the beer to the keg with a few gravity points left. Hook up a spunding valve, let the beer finish fermenting while dry hopping. This will scrub any O2, get some killer hop flavor, and naturally carbonate your beer. I usually let it dry hop and ferment out for another week or so, then throw it in the keezer for another week to settle out any yeast /. hop debris. After about 3 weeks in the keezer it is prime !
     
  7. mjryan

    mjryan Zealot (503) Dec 22, 2007 Minnesota

    I use two or three of these stainless tea balls. One ounce in each. I just let them sit on the bottom. They work pretty well for me.
     
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  8. Buck89

    Buck89 Poo-Bah (2,326) Feb 7, 2015 Tennessee
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    For me, the last pint and a half is cloudy but drinkable.
     
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  9. Brewday

    Brewday Initiate (118) Dec 25, 2015 New York

    Why bother if you're just letting the oxygen back in when you remove the lid. Maybe i'm missing something.
     
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  10. thebriansmaude

    thebriansmaude Initiate (68) Dec 16, 2016 Alberta (Canada)
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    Opening the lid to add hops is definitely a consession, but I think the O2 introduction is minimal in a keg that already has near zero O2, and I have to waste far less CO2 than with purging countless times with hops already in. One oz of Iostar works out to a buck a keg.

    Following that I purge from the bottom up using the liquid out post to clean up what was introduced, and then spund in that keg, further scrubbing any O2.

    Also more to the point of this thread, muslin bags hold more than tea balls, only release a small amount of hop debris that gets pushed out on first couple pours, and make hoppy ass beer even when they float, in my opinion.

    I’m not convinced vertical dry hop positioning in keg matters so much as I have used a floating dip tube that floated right next to a 5 oz muslin bag of hops and it tasted just as hoppy as a keg with a normal dip tube and non weighted bag of hops floating a foot and a half a way at the top of the keg.
     
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  11. PortLargo

    PortLargo Devotee (435) Oct 19, 2012 Florida

    A lot more than an ounce will fit (it's about 12" long), but as they expand it becomes very compacted . . . little to no exposure to liquid by the middle of the compacted hops. The resulting aroma is limited versus using a paint strainer/muslin bag. A soft-sided bag just expands as the hops grow in size giving much better aroma. This is a subjective measure, but has proven to work for me.

    I have used the big SS container (essentially a grande tea strainer) with one ounce of hops with good results, often time adding to a partially empty keg to add a little zing.
     
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  12. ECCS

    ECCS Initiate (168) Oct 28, 2015 Illinois
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    How long can you let 6oz of hops sit in the serving keg before any noticeable off flavors start showing?
     
  13. Buck89

    Buck89 Poo-Bah (2,326) Feb 7, 2015 Tennessee
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    I usually finish the kegs within 6 weeks and have not noticed any vegetal/off flavors. My hoppy beers typically peak 2 weeks after the DH.
     
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