Franconia Beer Message Board

Coolships
Posted by Jason on 2019-12-10 11:04:16
I'm no expert, but they come from the time when there was no cooling equipment or heat exchangers etc to cool the beer. Almost all breweries would have had them
120 years or so ago. The large surface area helped cool the beer quickly, and they were often in the top floor of buildings to ensure a through flow from windows. There's is a modern idea that, as usual pervades from the new world, that these were used as fermenters on account of wild yeasts entering through open windows - they were not used as fermenters. The beer was transferred to the fermenters after cooling.

Another mistake is to translate the German K├╝hlschiff literally into coolship in English. The correct translation is cooler. You don't call a K├╝hlschrank a cold container, you call it a fridge. 

As the wort should be cooled quickly, it can mean off flavors developing if it's not cooling fast enough. It's also exposed to a lot of air - the same air that cools it contains yeast that can infect it. There is a romanticism attached to them which I can understand, but if the beer is good it's due to the brewer being good, not because they have an old fashioned cooler.
 
Followups:
                                 Coolships by Andrew H on  2019-12-14 02:52:47
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