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I lived in Belgium for 2 years. Once I was in a beer brewing factory, where they said that brewing good beers is a 6 months process. Is it really true?

So, how to brew strong beers (~9%)? Like for example tripple leffe.

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3 Answers 3

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Use a high gravity yeast like 3787 Trappist Ale, lots of grain and sugar to make a high gravity wort, and lots of time to hang out in a secondary fermentation. A precautionary warning: be sure to use a larger diameter blow-off tube. High gravity yeast can be VERY active at first.

My most recent batch of Trippel Dog Dare was in the primary for ten days, secondary for two months, and cold bottles for 4 months. Generally, the longer you wait, the better, but inferior caps can leak over time.

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Typically you will want to age in secondary for a while before bottling on the big beers, but I've made an 8% beer and bottled within a month of pitching yeast, and it came out fine. The beer was a little green when I started drinking the batch, but it was fine before I 1/4 through the batch.

Of course, YMMV and all that.

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Is that true? I thought secondary fermentation was a common misnomer, but that could just be terminology. Do stronger brews require longer conditioning perhaps? –  Mark McDonald May 24 '11 at 13:09
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Time allows flavors to meld and mellow. In my experience, almost all my beer gets better with age. I typically keep beer for a week in primary fermentation, 2-3 weeks in secondary fermentation, and at least a month or two in bottles before I start drinking it. It's hard to wait, but it's usually worth it.

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