A hydrometer is used to figure out how much alcohol is in your beer or cider. It measures the density of liquid (called gravity). Alcohol is less dense than sugary pre-fermented beer, so measuring gravity at the beginning of fermentation (at the end of your brew day) and measuring it again two weeks later at the end of fermentation (when you’re ready to bottle) will tell you exactly how much alcohol you have on hand. It’s a great way to let a little science into your otherwise relaxing brew day adventures with a hydrometer.
Beer Brite finings are a very powerful form of dry isinglass finings. Isinglass is one of the main fining agents for clearing beer in the world and is used by virtually all breweries. The main problem with isinglass is that it needs to be kept constantly cool otherwise the product denatures and will not work. To overcome this, we have freeze-dried the isinglass at the point of making it up. Being a freeze-dried product, it can be stored at virtually any temperature without it losing any of its characteristics. Also, the free-drying extends the life of the finings considerably.
Why You Need It.
Although beers will eventually clear by themselves, sometimes this could be many months. Finings have a dual benefit when you add them to your beer, wine or cider. First, they attach to the haze and make it heavier, so it starts to settle quicker. As this is happening, the finings keeps absorbing the proteins that make up the haze, constantly getting bigger and heavier so it clears quickly.
Second, when the haze has fallen to a sediment, the finings starts to compact it, making less wastage. The sediment in its compact form is not so easily disturbed, so there is less chance of cloudy beer when pouring from a bottle.
Add two level teaspoons of powder into half a cup of cold water. Whisk with a fork for 1 minute to thoroughly mix. Leave for 15 minutes, then whisk again before adding to 5 gallons (23L) of beer towards the end of fermentation. This has the benefit of producing the finings with 100% activity, so you are using a more powerful and stronger finings. This results in clear beer quickly with more compact sediment.
When liquid isinglass is manufactured, it starts to deteriorate. The longer it is kept, the less fining properties are left in the product. As the Beer Brite was freeze-dried when it was made up, and then you are adding the water later on, you are using the full 100% fining properties.
What Quantity Of Beer Will It Treat?
Beer Brite is available in a 3 dose pot to treat up to three 5 gallon brews (22.5 litres). Larger sizes are available for commercial breweries, such as 120g sachets to treat 100-gallon tanks of beer.