Beer goes flat when bottled.

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rik242

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Beer goes flat when bottled.
« on: September 10, 2011, 22:05 »
Having brewed a keg of Norfolk Wherry I thought I would bottle it. The problem is that after being bottled it has gone flat, whereas the beer still in the pressure barrel still maintains a good head when poured. What am  doing wrong?

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Old Tom

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Re: Beer goes flat when bottled.
« Reply #1 on: September 10, 2011, 22:21 »
Either the bottle caps are leeking gas or you arn`t putting enough priming sugar in the bottle. About a teaspoon should do it and leave the bottles in a warm place for a few days for the secondary fermentation to take place before moving the bottles to a cooler place to condition.
I can remember when it were all fields round `ere.

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Kleftiwallah

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Re: Beer goes flat when bottled.
« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2011, 10:32 »

When you transfer the beer from the keg to the bottles (although I don't see why you feel you have to do this) add a smidge of sugar, ullage will form so be careful when pouring out.    Cheers,    Tony.
I may be growing OLD, but I refuse to grow UP !

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rik242

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Re: Beer goes flat when bottled.
« Reply #3 on: September 12, 2011, 13:25 »
Thanks both, do I still need to put in sugar even though its been in a secondary fermentation barrel before the bottles. For the record I am trying to suss out bottling as I have another brew waiting to go into the pressure barrel. Maybe I should just get another pressure barrel.

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hamstergbert

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Re: Beer goes flat when bottled.
« Reply #4 on: September 12, 2011, 16:21 »
If it has already been subjected to secondary fermentation by being conditioned in the keg (ie added sugar at the time of decant in to the keg) then you are in the same boat as if you were to bring a pint of draught home from the pub, pour it into a bottle and wonder why it is flat!

If you are bottling from the keg you really need to do it within a day or so of it going into the keg and so will not get a huge amount of benefit in terms of clearing.

Best to either bottle straight into your bottles each with it's chosen dose of conditioning sugar straight from the first fermentation vessel, and of course reduce accordingly the conditioning sugar dose for the bit that you do chuck into the keg.  You can of course add the whole brew conditioning sugar before that step  in which case you do not need ot prime each bottle individually.

My current Wherry is in a king keg and is ticketty, not to mention boo.  I have bottled it in the past (but never after it has already been keg-conditioned) and it is splendid either way (although not quite as top hole as the Admirals Reserve).  Main disadvantages of bottling are the time honoured ones - great care needed when pouring (although a little sediment never seems to have hurt me) and that once opened each litre PET bottle has to be finished - it will not keep but go flat if you try and leave it for later.  Oh, hang on, that second point is in fact one of the advantages of bottling!
The Dales - probably fingerprint marks where God's hand touched the world

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rik242

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Re: Beer goes flat when bottled.
« Reply #5 on: September 12, 2011, 20:36 »
Thanks for that! As you can see, its my first barrel. ::)

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crh75

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Re: Beer goes flat when bottled.
« Reply #6 on: September 13, 2011, 15:31 »
I always mature my beer for about 4 weeks in a pressure barrel before adding priming sugar and bottling. Left for another 4 weeks (1 week warm, 3 weeks cool) it is perfect.

If fining is required that can be done at the maturing stage (ie in the pressure barrel). 

You will find the beer has a better flavour if you mature before bottling. 

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bearhugger1972

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Re: Beer goes flat when bottled.
« Reply #7 on: September 15, 2011, 21:09 »

When you transfer the beer from the keg to the bottles (although I don't see why you feel you have to do this) add a smidge of sugar, ullage will form so be careful when pouring out.    Cheers,    Tony.
What is ullage?
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crh75

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Re: Beer goes flat when bottled.
« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2011, 12:08 »
Ullage is the air space at the top of the keg (or any container).



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