View Full Version : Is there a consensus on which startup config. is more economical?

11-04-2014, 12:43 PM
I just read Tom Hennessy's book, "Brewery Operations Manual" and he seems to imply that it's better to have a smaller number of fermenters and then to move the 6-7 day old beer into a larger set of BRITEs for (say 7days) or Serving tanks in the Cold Room.

This would be opposed to having more fermenters and then a smaller number of BRITEs and then to keg or move the carbonated beer into a serving tank in your cold room. Say, Beer ferments in jacketed CFVs for 12 days and then BRITES for 2 days.

Tom's suggested startup config would have different economics from the second option that I described above.

Tom's config would require a larger cold room (to accommodate the BRITEs) but less Glycol Chiller load (since the BRITE would be in the Cold Room), and would require fewer kegs for serving.

If you used non-jacketed BRITEs in the Cold Room in Tom's config, there would be a capital expense savings for those vessels. But the beer would be conditioned at more like 38 deg. F and not 33-34 deg F.

How would you clean and sanitize BRITEs that reside in the cold room? You'd need drains in the cold room and some way to get the hoses in/out of the cold room without leaving the door open and creating an energy loss during this cycle.

Going with the second option (more ferms, fewer BRITEs, more serving kegs) would let you condition the beer at 33-34, get by with a smaller Cold Room, but would require a larger glycol chiller, and more kegs for serving from.

Has anyone evaluated these trade-offs and have an opinion to offer on which method is less costly and which produces better beer ?



11-04-2014, 12:52 PM
An absolute ton of variables... are the brites used equipment? Is the cold room used equipment, or if your jurisdiction will permit it, controlled by a Cool-Bot? Is it a brand new building or are you dealing with the limitations of the existing space? Crunch the numbers and trust your gut for what your local market will bear.

11-04-2014, 02:41 PM
All of what was said above plus what is available when... sometimes you might find that a less than ideal set up come available within your time frame and getting started sooner, ultimately, means less hemorrhaging of $$