It's Thursday, so might as well "throw back" and see what I was blogging about last year. Oh, dry hopping. I'm pretty sure I haven't dry hopped since that post was published.
Check it out here first, then come back. Dry Hopping.
Afraid of the mess and residual hop particulate (using pellet hops) I've always put them in a little mesh bag. It tends to float, so I've put little pebbles in it to get it to sink to the bottom, and then the problem is removing it afterwards. It's been too much of a hassle to do. But dang if I'm able to get the same hop aroma without it...not going to happen.
I'm brewing an IPA this weekend. I've gotta dry hop it during the fermenting process. And this is my three step plan.
1. Rack to secondary and dry hop in secondary. I'm going to leave in primary for 3-5 days (keeping an eye on activity and when active fermentation completes), then rack over, and leave for about 2 weeks.
2. Dump hops straight in the carboy. I've always used pellet hops (for better of for worse). Risk the mess, dumping straight in. Swirl lightly to break the surface tension so even the smaller pieces get wet. Let dry hop for 1 day before going to part three.
3. Cold crash. adjust the temperature or put the carboy in a refrigerator and get it cold, for 2 days. This will help clarify the beer and bring the hop residue to the bottom.
After 2 days cold, rack to keg of bottling bucket and bottle. Be sure to leave the hops at the bottom of the carboy. Don't suck them up.
That is the plan. Cheers!