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Once, initial and secondary fermentation are complete, how long should the barrel be left to clear and mature? I understand that with a bottom tap barrel you have to wait for the entire, barrel to clear, but my understanding is that with the top tap barrel you always take from the top layer and so is the time before beginning to consume reduced?

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I'd usually wait at least a week for conditioning and clearing. The top tap may reduce the time taken to clear the top layer, but you likely want to leave at least a week to allow the flavours to mellow.

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