What Is the Difference Between Top and Bottom Fermented Beer?
In simple terms, the adjectives “top” and “bottom” say it all. The difference primarily relates to the type of yeast used and how it is managed during the brewing process. Ultimately, it affects the characteristic flavors that come out of the beer.
Here is a quick breakdown:
|Top-Fermenting. Floats and accumulates at the top of the tank.||Bottom-Fermenting. Sinks and settles at the bottom of the tank.|
Common Brewing Duration
|At least seven (7) days||At least one (1) month|
Common Flavor Profile
|Full-flavored, usually complex, with spicy and fruity tones||Crisp, clean, and mellow|
ACE BEER FERMENTATION TANK
What Is the Difference Between Top-Fermenting Yeast and Bottom-Fermenting Yeast?
Here is a table highlighting the key differences:
Associated Beer Type
|Ale, Top-Fermented Beer||Lager, Bottom-Fermented Beer|
Common Fermentation Temperatures (varies by recipe)
|60 to 75°F or 16 to 24°C||42 to 54°F or 6 to 12°C|
|The majority separates from the wort and floats to the top, similar to how oil separates from water.||The yeast settles at the bottom of the tank, resembling rain settling.|
Is Lager Top Fermented or Bottom Fermented?
All Lagers are Bottom Fermented because they are brewed using bottom-fermenting yeast. They rely on this yeast for their production.
Are Ales Top or Bottom Fermented?
Based on the information provided, Ales are Top Fermented. They use top-fermenting yeast, which is a defining characteristic of top fermentation.
Is IPA Top or Bottom Fermented?
IPA stands for India Pale Ale, emphasizing “Ale” as the operative word. Therefore, IPAs are Top Fermented because they are ales.
IPAs are flavorful beers that are heavily hopped to achieve their characteristic bitterness. They also showcase hints of citrus or fruity flavors from the ale yeast.
Is Stout Top or Bottom Fermented?
A Stout is made using Ale yeast. It is a flavorful ale, often intensely colored and known for tastes resembling coffee or chocolate.