I am currently about 2 weeks into the primary fermentation a black stout to which I added 8oz of unsweetened cacao powder during the boil. The gravity seems to be stuck at 1.022 rather than the 1.014-1.018 that was predicted by the recipe. It doesn't seem that far off of the predicted gravity so I wonder if the chocolate could make a difference.

Would adding the cacao affect the final gravity of the beer?

  • what was the SG?
    – mdma
    Commented Mar 3, 2012 at 20:43
  • the OG was 1.054
    – DorkRawk
    Commented Mar 4, 2012 at 9:43

1 Answer 1


Some elements in the chocolate are dispersed throughout the beer, so it does affect the FG in principle, but not by any appreciable amount. 8oz in 5 gallons would be much less than 1 gravity point.

It could be a stuck ferment, or that your FG realy is 1.022 due to unfermentables. Try rousing the yeast a little and raising the temperature by 5F/2C which may help get it started again. You could also try a forced fermentation test to see what the real FG is.

Also, check the attenuation of your yeast strain - 1.022 is not so far off 1.018 - and well within the range of attenuation of different strains.

  • Is it too late for a forced fermentation test after the beer has been fermented as much as this? And just because I am a stickler, rousing yeast is a good way to try and eek out a couple more gravity points, but you should warm the beer a bit FIRST then rouse. Otherwise the yeast just flocc out while you are trying to raise the temp.
    – brewchez
    Commented Mar 4, 2012 at 3:09
  • I don't think it's ever too late to do a fmall forced ferment. The point of the test is to see if there are fermentables still in the beer. The higher temps and fresh yeast allow you to push the fermentation hard to its limit on a small sample, so you then know how to go about working with the remainder of the beer depending upon if FG has been reached or not.
    – mdma
    Commented Mar 4, 2012 at 14:58

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