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10

First, make an appropriately sized starter! Pitching a regular old vial into something like a 1.090 beer is a good way to overstress the yeast and get lots of undesirable esters, and have a beer that didn't finish out completely. Jamil has a helpful writeup on pitching rates and a pitching rate calculator that will help you size a starter. Second, pick a ...


10

With a beer that strong, you probably should have repitched at bottling. There are several factors that the yeast must fight in this situation, including: high alcohol strength - almost 10% ABV cool temperature - the bottom two degrees of the yeast's fermentation range long settling time - six weeks There's good news, though. That strain should be able ...


7

As alcohol levels rise in a beer, eventually you can taste it. There is just no way around that part. However as a brewer you do have control over some of the less desirable tasting higher order (molecularly complex) alcohols. The best way to control the levels of these types of flavors is to pitch plenty of yeast, ferment on the cooler side (that also ...


7

Pure sugar is the most fermentable substance, at 1.046 points per pound per gallon. With 12 pounds of sugar in 3 gallons, you'd expect a OG of 1.183. Honey has an estimated yield of 35 ppg, and correspondingly the gravity would be lower - 1.135. There could be 3 possibilities for the observed high gravity the stratification is causing the reading to be ...


6

Putting 10.5kg of grain in 11.5 litres of water will kill your efficiency, unfortunately: From Braukaiser: Traditional British style infusion mashes are with about 2-2.5 l/kg (1 - 1.15 qt/lb) very thick and German style mashes are generally much thinner (3.5-5 l/kg / 1.75-2.5 qt/lb). Historically this is rooted in the fact that the latter needed to ...


5

If the starter fully fermented, most of the 1.040 should be gone; normal yeast attenuation is around 75%, so you should have 1L of 1.010 beer in the starter vessel. 1L of 1.010 beer into 19L of 1.076 OG wort would reduce the OG down to about 1.073. (76 points * 19L + 10 points * 1L) / 20L = 72.7 points = 1.073. Though if possible, you should try to ...


5

This is a perfectly fine technique if you don't want to do a double mash session to get it all grain. The only limitation with trying to go "imperial" using a large portion of extract (or doing it all extract if you aren't set up for all-grain brewing) is the fermentability of the extract. Extract, by nature of how it is made, tends to have a limit to ...


4

Nearly any yeast will ferment out a 12% ABV beer. The Ardennes yeast especially should have no trouble. I have never found it necessary to do incremental additions to the fermenter for a high OG beer. Just be certain that you pitch the right amount of healthy yeast, oxygenate/aerate well, and make a fermentable wort. That means a long, low temp mash, and ...


4

Oxygenate Pitch a proper amount of yeast Keep it at a steady temperature. For Ardennes I'd recommend starting around 66-68 for at least two days then ramping up to 70-72 until fermentation is done. Have up to 20% of your fermentables come from sugar, not malt. This is normal for Tripels. Those are the main things. A good tripel recipe is designed to make ...


4

How do you feel about sour beers? I was just reading on The Mad Fermentationist that sour beers often mask their alcohol content with their other pungent aromas and flavors. And since they attenuate more than a normal brew, you get more alcohol for the same starting gravity, so take that into account as well. A 1.080 sour that gets down to 1.005 should be ...


4

I'd be willing to bet that the high FG was due to insufficient yeast pitching. By itself, most yeast can handle up to 13% ABV, so it isn't the intolerance of your alcohol level. I would recommend doing a yeast starter for brews this high in gravity (a little late now obviously). In your situation, I would consider pitching another packet of yeast (see the ...


3

You'd need to check the Mr Malty pitching calculator to be sure, but I think you are going way overboard with the starter. For a 1.085 Belgian ale that started off in a smack-pack, I'd make about a half gallon starter of 1.040 gravity and call it a day. I've made a similar Belgian in the past, and did a 1qt starter stepped up with another 2 quarts, and it ...


3

At this point you don't know if the fermentation is stuck or finished. Despite the yeast attenuation rating, it's the fermentability of the wort that determines attenuation. Alcohol tolerance is not the problem. More yeast might help or it might not. Before you do anything you should try a fast ferment test to determine if there are any more fermentable ...


3

"Primary" fermentation for a big beer like that could be as long as 3-4 weeks. I certainly wouldn't touch it for 3 weeks myself, except to check the gravity once a week. After that, a secondary is up to you. I would personally secondary that beer for a few weeks before bottling, but I think you can skip that step, assuming your beer is fully fermented out. ...


3

I too am brewing a couple winter warmers right now (1.090) one a week old and one a day old. I always start my fermentation out a little cold (max 5 deg from suggested, 2 or 3 if i can help it) that way the yeast has a chance to get comfy and rev up. Both batches pitched at low 60's, and the other answer is very correct about fermentation raising the temp, ...


3

What you are wanting to do is basically a parti-gyle. This is where you run off multiple beers from a single mash. There are many different ways to go about this but the most common is to run off your strong beer and then your secondary. You can also blend the two worts to reach differing target gravities or do a 1/3-2/3 runoff. Here is an article ...


3

I recently brewed a 14% RIS using a similar technique - I started out with S-04, and then used WLP099 to continue where that couldn't. Since the WLP090 yeast strain has a high alcohol tolerance, you only need the WLP099 if you're talking abv levels above around 13%. I think your plan sounds about right - although I would use more WLP090 and less WLP099, or ...


2

As long as you ensure your extract is reasonably fresh, you shouldn't be able to notice the LME in an imperial that's mostly grain. From personal experience, the high alcohol content and heavy hopping rates make it impossible to tell that LME was used. Additionally, stronger beers tend towards higher concentrations of esters, fusels, and other aromatics, ...


2

I just take a look at what I've got in my inventory and wing it. I almost always cap the mash with some additional grain, usually crystal of some sort. I've found that second runnings beers can have a thin body and adding more crystal helps with that. In addition, you don't have to worry about conversion using crystal or other non diastatic malts. As to ...


2

Not only is it not too cold, it is in fact, too warm and could possibly make crappy beer. A 1.095 beer is going to ferment with a LOT of activity and heat. The real temp of that beer today or tomorrow is going to be close to 70-75F if the ambient temp is 65F. Anything over 70F and you've got a real danger of developing fusel alcohols that taste bad and do ...


2

Over a week or two, the temperature swings wont make much difference since there is little flavor contribution from the fermentation that goes on in bottle conditioning - for a high gravity beer, the priming sugar represents only about 1% of fermentables. It sounds like after a week, fermentation of the priming sugar is pretty much done - the remaining ...


2

Like so many things in beer, a multitude of factors could be at work. Is this an all-grain or partial mash? It's possible that you ended up with a lot of unfermentable sugars and the yeast are just done. More yeast will have nothing to eat. In which case your beer is just done. 7.35% ABV and ~63% apparent attenuation. Not terrible. If the yeast has ...


1

Average it! Multiply your starter volume and wort volume by their original gravities respectively to produce numbers that can be combined to derive an average gravity reading from the blend. Do this by dividing the sum of the gravity-volume products by the sum of all wort: ( ( OG1 * V1 ) + ( OG2 * V2 ) ) / ( V1 + V2 ) = SG Where... OG1 is the ...


1

The stepwise additions you're making to keep the gravity lower is often done with high gravity brewing. It relieves the yeast from the osmotic stresses of the high gravity wort. 3 stages is probably overkill here. If you want to call the first stage of the brew a starter, that's fine, although you could start with the whole 5.5 gallons at 1.045 and that ...


1

The only way to know if it's stuck or it's finished is to do a forced fermentation test at 20°C/68°F on a small amount of the beer (say 1qt) with a fresh yeast. WLP007 is a relatively good attenuator for an English strain, with the range given as 70-80%. The upper limit is in the optimum case, and you'll typically only reach this if there is ...


1

The only way to know for certain whether or not fermentation has completed is to take gravity readings. If you notice that the gravity doesn't change after 3-4 days, and remains at a SG of 1.021, then you most likely have a stuck fermentation. Unfortunately, pitching another vial of yeast is not likely to be as effective as you may need it to be. In order ...


1

Homebrew Talk pulled the recipe from clone brews. Looks like they use 1084 from Wyeast, which judging by the OG and FG, is cutting it a little too close for my liking since 1084 caps at 12% ABV. Wyeast 2206 is a lager strain, which would go against the recipe being an ale, plus it has even less tolerance. I suspect if you lager it with 2206 (or ...


1

For a really big beer (and 1.096 is pretty big) you might consider making a full batch of 'little' beer as a starter (OG of 1.040-50). I would consider doing a smaller, mild-tasting session ale so as to not potentially contaminate the 'big' beer with residual flavors. After primary is finished, siphon off the beer and pitch your big beer wort directly on top ...


1

It's hard to know when the yeast has hit high krausen, since the constant stirring prevents a krausen from forming, but with a starter, in many ways, you don't really need to know.... The idea behind pitching at high krausen is to pitch actively fermenting yeast. With good yeast stock, after about 18-24h your starter will be actively fermenting, and will ...


1

Did you make a starter initially? If not, you seriously underpitched for a beer of that gravity. If you want to try adding more yeast, keep in mind that it takes a LOT of yeast to restart a stuck fermentation. 2-3 qt. of yeast slurry is what's usually needed. if you have a brewpub nearby where you can get some yeast, that would be your best bet. Or do ...



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