09 July 2006

Ike's Wicked Ale, Day 7

After letting the beer sit in the primary fermenter for a week, it was time to switch it over to the secondary fermenter. This helps remove a lot of the sediment. This step is not required (I have had plenty of good beers that were kept in the same container for the whole time), but I figured I would follow the directions to increase my chances of having a nice and tasty beverage at the end of the process.

I moved the beer from my kitchen pantry floor onto the counter top and let it sit there for about an hour or two. After I pulled off the top of the plastic bucket, I snapped this photo of the beer. It didn't look too appetizing at this point. You could see a ring around the bucket where the fermentation process had foamed up.

My beer making kit came with a nifty auto-siphon which I got to use for the first time today. I wasn't sure how well it would work, so I tested it out with water and my sanitizing solution. After three or four pumps on the siphon, the tube was full of liquid and gravity kept it flowing after that. It is definitely a nice tool to have. Once I was comfortable working the siphon and everything was cleaned, it was time to transfer the beer. Here you can see me holding the apparatus with the beer flowing through the tubing into the glass carboy secondary fermenter.

When the beer had finished transferring, all I needed to do was put the stopper and air lock onto the carboy. The beer looked much better in the glass container after most of the sediment was left in the plastic bucket. I didn't taste the beer at this stage, but I probably will right before I bottle it. I will probably get around to bottling next weekend. I hope I have enough empty bottles by then!


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