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MedWonk

Dry Hopping Time

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So, I'm new brewer, and I have a question about how long to dry hop. The Mr. Beer recipes tell me to drop in the bag of hops right after boiling and adding the malt extracts. I've read that people dry hop for 7 - 14 days, but if I plan on letting the brew ferment for 21 days, what would happen if I let the hops stay in there for 21 days?

The Mr. Beer FAQs are really adamant about not opening the keg while the brew ferments, so I'm hoping to avoid that, but if it comes down to opening the keg, how long can it be open without ruining the brew? A minute? Less?

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I've made a number of Mr. Beer recipes that call for adding hops immediately after pitching the yeast, and I usually let my beer ferment for 21 days. I haven't noticed any problems.

You can open the lid to add something to the keg, but it should be done as quickly and as gently as possible. I can't imagine that it would take you more than ten or fifteen seconds to add anything, such as pureed fruit or some honey dissolved in water. I've done both of these additions during fermentation, and it doesn't take very long. Such a short time with the lid off won't hurt anything, as the CO2 layer on top of the wort acts as a barrier against outside air.

If you're going to drop a sack of hops in, it shouldn't take you more than two seconds.

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MedWonk wrote:

if it comes down to opening the keg, how long can it be open without ruining the brew??

...Generally speaking about 14 minutes. You open it for 15 minutes and we (collectively) send the guard with a warrant.

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To touch on what Dave said...I had the same wuestion as you. And he's right. You can open the LBK if you're just curious about the krausen or fermentation bubbling. You can open it for a few seconds to drop in a bag of hops. None of that is gonna kill it. No probem whatsoever.

The only (resounding) word of warning is to minimize your peeking (opening) of the beer too much. Looking in on her once or twice for a minute each time during the 2 or 3 weeks of fermentation ain't gonna bother it. It's when you go crazy opening the dadgumn thing every other day. That will piss it off.

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I used to peak once in a while, now I just look through the side. It is easy to see the krausen.

+1 to adding stuff ... quickly and gently. Oh, and don't sneeze or cough while it is open. ;)

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I let the primary fermentation complete before dry hopping for a week. For most 2 weeks is plenty of time for the primary fermentation to complete, carefully add your dry hops then close the LBK for another week.

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