Cask Days 2015

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AugustusRex
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Re: Cask Days 2015

Postby AugustusRex » Tue Oct 06, 2015 3:05 am

grub wrote:
atomeyes wrote:the other problem?
carbonation.
i had to read a bunch of webpages and watch tutorials on how to carbonate cask beer. i then made a step by step spreadsheet on what to do and it still didn't make total sense. i think we have a grasp on how to cask carbonate/condition, but we'll see. and if it's tapped on friday and we don't have insane temp fluctuations, will it still be carbonated by sunday?
that's why most breweries probably pre-carbonate and just rack to casks. more controlled variables, less risk of gushers.


it's basically just bottle conditioning in a large bottle, no real magic there. sure the temperature and length of the event can play some havoc, but that'll happen with even perfect carbonation.



I don't buy that conditioning a cask is an easy feat. Most of the cask beer that I have had in Ontario doesn't hit the mark. Something about it must be tricky.

Many Ontario brewers can't even bottle condition properly anyway.
atomeyes
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Re: Cask Days 2015

Postby atomeyes » Tue Oct 06, 2015 6:55 am

grub wrote:
atomeyes wrote:not that easy. there's the soft and hardwood spires


i wasn't saying that hypothetically - it's worked fine for every one i've ever done. spiles have more to do with serving than conditioning. if you overcarbonate / undercarbonate, the spile can be somewhat used to compensate for that (more for over than under) but that's as far as it goes.


i'm a n00b at it. attempting it for the first time. but it was my impression that the soft wood was to account for overcarbonation. once you were at the right level, you hammered in the hardwood
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grub
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Re: Cask Days 2015

Postby grub » Tue Oct 06, 2015 7:17 am

AugustusRex wrote:I don't buy that conditioning a cask is an easy feat. Most of the cask beer that I have had in Ontario doesn't hit the mark. Something about it must be tricky.

Many Ontario brewers can't even bottle condition properly anyway.


your second statement basically answers your first. often things are rushed, or misunderstood, or just plain wrong.

There's really no magic to carbonation - a specific amount of sugar turns into a proportional amount of carbonation. Problems arise when the beer isn't done fermenting and you end up with more sugar than you bargained for, occasionally when the yeast are too dead/tired to carbonate and it ends up too low. You need to know your beer is done fermenting, or be accounting for that in the priming. Of course, if it's a new or experimental beer and/or a yeast you're not familiar with, it can be interesting, but none of that runs counter to "carbonate it like a bottle" as the same problem would happen there.
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grub
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Re: Cask Days 2015

Postby grub » Tue Oct 06, 2015 7:22 am

atomeyes wrote:i'm a n00b at it. attempting it for the first time. but it was my impression that the soft wood was to account for overcarbonation. once you were at the right level, you hammered in the hardwood


Yep, that's more or less how i understand it. It still shouldn't change how you prime and may help if things go a little awry. Those are the sort of things the tapper should be worried about more than the brewer. Just use any old priming calculator with the volume you're putting into the cask and desired carbonation level and you're good to go...assuming that the beer is actually done fermenting anyway. if it's still going, it's a little more complicated but still has nothing to do with the spiles involved ;)
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atomeyes
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Re: Cask Days 2015

Postby atomeyes » Tue Oct 06, 2015 1:34 pm

grub wrote:
atomeyes wrote:i'm a n00b at it. attempting it for the first time. but it was my impression that the soft wood was to account for overcarbonation. once you were at the right level, you hammered in the hardwood


Yep, that's more or less how i understand it. It still shouldn't change how you prime and may help if things go a little awry. Those are the sort of things the tapper should be worried about more than the brewer. Just use any old priming calculator with the volume you're putting into the cask and desired carbonation level and you're good to go...assuming that the beer is actually done fermenting anyway. if it's still going, it's a little more complicated but still has nothing to do with the spiles involved ;)


yeah. a bit nervous, since i'm doing two all-brett beer and, in typical toronto brewing fashion, there wasn't enough lead time for me to do it. i literally need 1 more week to feel (more) comfortable. my brett vrei smells great 1 week in and the sacc trois is nowhere near completion (which is the opposite of how i thought it would go).

overcarbonation happens more than you think. i've heard of casks exploding/gushing. the soft wood allows some permeability, so you can kind of get fermentation equilibrium. you want it to be at the point where you open the spile (or whatever the fuck it's called) and 3-10 seconds later, you get foam. once you get that, you nail a hard one in
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Re: Cask Days 2015

Postby atomeyes » Tue Oct 06, 2015 1:42 pm

grub wrote:
AugustusRex wrote:I don't buy that conditioning a cask is an easy feat. Most of the cask beer that I have had in Ontario doesn't hit the mark. Something about it must be tricky.

Many Ontario brewers can't even bottle condition properly anyway.


your second statement basically answers your first. often things are rushed, or misunderstood, or just plain wrong.

There's really no magic to carbonation - a specific amount of sugar turns into a proportional amount of carbonation. Problems arise when the beer isn't done fermenting and you end up with more sugar than you bargained for, occasionally when the yeast are too dead/tired to carbonate and it ends up too low. You need to know your beer is done fermenting, or be accounting for that in the priming. Of course, if it's a new or experimental beer and/or a yeast you're not familiar with, it can be interesting, but none of that runs counter to "carbonate it like a bottle" as the same problem would happen there.


i also assume that most ontario breweries force carb and few bottle condition. so there are no real carbonation challenges. it's a bright tank and CO2. not hard.
casks require skill and up to ONE WEEK of patience and lead time. hah. but really, you need to rack to the cask, prime, let it start to re-ferment, and then cool it after a few days so the carbonation sets.
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grub
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Re: Cask Days 2015

Postby grub » Tue Oct 06, 2015 2:45 pm

atomeyes wrote:overcarbonation happens more than you think. i've heard of casks exploding/gushing. the soft wood allows some permeability, so you can kind of get fermentation equilibrium. you want it to be at the point where you open the spile (or whatever the fuck it's called) and 3-10 seconds later, you get foam. once you get that, you nail a hard one in


oh, i know it happens often. being one of the first to arrive for cask days was always a treat, seeing where there was still beer on the ceiling, or seeing ralph still dripping beer and cursing one brewer or another (some were frequent offenders). temperature and how much the beer has been shaken in transport before tapping matter too. even the best case scenario on the brewer's end can turn to shit if the cask is at 70F and rolls down some stairs before being tapped.
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grub
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Re: Cask Days 2015

Postby grub » Tue Oct 06, 2015 2:48 pm

atomeyes wrote:i also assume that most ontario breweries force carb and few bottle condition. so there are no real carbonation challenges. it's a bright tank and CO2. not hard.
casks require skill and up to ONE WEEK of patience and lead time. hah. but really, you need to rack to the cask, prime, let it start to re-ferment, and then cool it after a few days so the carbonation sets.


yep, at least a week - i generally like to allow 2-3 if i can, just like the minimum for bottle conditioning. it's a little easier when you're dealing with one larger volume and expect a high number of viable yeast in the vessel rather than whatever few landed in a given bottle. as for cooling, i don't think that's needed until within a few days of serving when you know the yeast should be done their job.
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atomeyes
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Re: Cask Days 2015

Postby atomeyes » Wed Oct 07, 2015 6:49 am

now that we've bored everyone to tears with our cask talk, can we talk about how nice the Quebec list looks, how Nectarious is on cask and how the cider offerings may steal the show again?
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jeremyg
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Re: Cask Days 2015

Postby jeremyg » Wed Oct 07, 2015 8:19 am

yeah, definitely excited to try some of those west ave ciders. everything i've had by them has been tremendous.
rfrf
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Re: Cask Days 2015

Postby rfrf » Wed Oct 07, 2015 9:19 am

Have a Session Four (regular) ticket for sale, face value. send a PM if interested.
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JerCraigs
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Re: Cask Days 2015

Postby JerCraigs » Thu Oct 08, 2015 7:09 am

atomeyes wrote:now that we've bored everyone to tears with our cask talk, can we talk about how nice the Quebec list looks, how Nectarious is on cask and how the cider offerings may steal the show again?


The cider list is more impressive than the majority of the beers on the Washington and California lists!
frozentee
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Re: Cask Days 2015

Postby frozentee » Thu Oct 15, 2015 3:02 pm

I would trade a Saturday early access ticket (Session 3) for a Friday general access ticket (Session 2) straight up if anyone is interested.
rejtable
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Re: Cask Days 2015

Postby rejtable » Sun Oct 18, 2015 2:31 pm

Are the shuttle tickets the best way to get there? Sorry, newbie! :D
BakaGaijin
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Re: Cask Days 2015

Postby BakaGaijin » Sun Oct 18, 2015 3:18 pm

rejtable wrote:Are the shuttle tickets the best way to get there? Sorry, newbie! :D


Hard to say. This is the first time the shuttle has been ticketed. Last year it wasn't ticketed and the Saturday night session was a shit show at the end of the night. Not enough shuttles or cabs. It was difficult to get outta there.

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