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Old 04-09-2009, 03:13 PM   #1
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Default Ingredients for a Double/Imperial Wit?

I'm trying to work on a recipe for an Imperial Wit and someone pointed out that I had too much wheat compared to base malts, so I tried to correct that. I am trying to get more character into the beer from wheat products other than DME. This would be my first DME recipe, should that still used as a late addition for lighter color? I'm not sure if I had my Beersmith set up correctly, but this seems like a lot of grains/adjuncts to get my OG to 1.089, also if I do a protein rest and aerate really well, would it be possible to get a FG lower than 1.022? I know the hops don't fit the standard wit, I'm going for a more grapefruit flavor and aroma, is that enough Amarillo? I have pummelos at home so I was going to use those instead of grapefruits. Any big problems with this recipe or words of caution?

0.50 lb Rice Hulls (0.0 SRM) Adjunct 3.85 %
3.00 lb Extra Light Dry Extract (3.0 SRM) Dry Extract 23.08 %
2.00 lb Wheat Dry Extract (8.0 SRM) Dry Extract 15.38 %
1.00 lb Pilsner (2 Row) Bel (2.0 SRM) Grain 7.69 %
1.00 lb Vienna Malt (3.5 SRM) Grain 7.69 %
1.00 lb Wheat, Flaked (1.6 SRM) Grain 7.69 %
1.00 lb Wheat, Torrified (1.7 SRM) Grain 7.69 %
1.00 lb White Wheat Malt (2.4 SRM) Grain 7.69 %
1.00 oz Amarillo Gold [9.30 %] (60 min) Hops 14.6 IBU
0.50 oz Amarillo Gold [9.30 %] (45 min) Hops 6.7 IBU
0.50 oz Amarillo Gold [9.30 %] (15 min) Hops 3.6 IBU
0.50 oz Amarillo Gold [9.30 %] (5 min) Hops 1.5 IBU
0.50 oz Coriander Seed (Boil 5.0 min) Misc
1.00 items Whirlfloc Tablet (Boil 15.0 min) Misc
1.50 oz Orange Peel, Sweet (Boil 5.0 min) Misc
2.00 oz Pummelo Peel (Boil 5.0 min) Misc
2.00 tsp Yeast Nutrient (Primary 3.0 days) Misc
2.50 lb Candi Sugar, Clear (0.5 SRM) Sugar 19.23 %
1 Pkgs Belgian Witbier (Wyeast Labs #3944) Yeast-Wheat

Est Original Gravity: 1.089 SG
Est Final Gravity: 1.022 SG
Estimated Alcohol by Vol: 8.85 %
Bitterness: 31.8 IBU
Est Color: 5.9 SRM

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Old 04-09-2009, 03:33 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hophead75 View Post
I'm trying to work on a recipe for an Imperial Wit and someone pointed out that I had too much wheat compared to base malts, so I tried to correct that. I am trying to get more character into the beer from wheat products other than DME. This would be my first DME recipe, should that still used as a late addition for lighter color? I'm not sure if I had my Beersmith set up correctly, but this seems like a lot of grains/adjuncts to get my OG to 1.089, also if I do a protein rest and aerate really well, would it be possible to get a FG lower than 1.022? I know the hops don't fit the standard wit, I'm going for a more grapefruit flavor and aroma, is that enough Amarillo? I have pummelos at home so I was going to use those instead of grapefruits. Any big problems with this recipe or words of caution?

0.50 lb Rice Hulls (0.0 SRM) Adjunct 3.85 %
3.00 lb Extra Light Dry Extract (3.0 SRM) Dry Extract 23.08 %
2.00 lb Wheat Dry Extract (8.0 SRM) Dry Extract 15.38 %
1.00 lb Pilsner (2 Row) Bel (2.0 SRM) Grain 7.69 %
1.00 lb Vienna Malt (3.5 SRM) Grain 7.69 %
1.00 lb Wheat, Flaked (1.6 SRM) Grain 7.69 %
1.00 lb Wheat, Torrified (1.7 SRM) Grain 7.69 %
1.00 lb White Wheat Malt (2.4 SRM) Grain 7.69 %
1.00 oz Amarillo Gold [9.30 %] (60 min) Hops 14.6 IBU
0.50 oz Amarillo Gold [9.30 %] (45 min) Hops 6.7 IBU
0.50 oz Amarillo Gold [9.30 %] (15 min) Hops 3.6 IBU
0.50 oz Amarillo Gold [9.30 %] (5 min) Hops 1.5 IBU
0.50 oz Coriander Seed (Boil 5.0 min) Misc
1.00 items Whirlfloc Tablet (Boil 15.0 min) Misc
1.50 oz Orange Peel, Sweet (Boil 5.0 min) Misc
2.00 oz Pummelo Peel (Boil 5.0 min) Misc
2.00 tsp Yeast Nutrient (Primary 3.0 days) Misc
2.50 lb Candi Sugar, Clear (0.5 SRM) Sugar 19.23 %
1 Pkgs Belgian Witbier (Wyeast Labs #3944) Yeast-Wheat

Est Original Gravity: 1.089 SG
Est Final Gravity: 1.022 SG
Estimated Alcohol by Vol: 8.85 %
Bitterness: 31.8 IBU
Est Color: 5.9 SRM
This looks like an interesting recipe, but I don't think you can consider it a Imperial Wit if there is such a thing.

Take a peak at the BJCP guidelines for Belgian and French ales

BJCP 2008 Style Guidelines - Category 16

I suppose this could fall into the Belgian Specialty Ale category as everything varies in it.

I have never done a mini-mash brew, but the only way I can think of helping lower your FG would be to have a massive starter (4L) made and do your mash at a lower temperature such as 150*. I don't think it will go much lower than 1.015 which will leave a little sweetness but this would go beyond the attenuation advertised by wyeast. On a side note about advertised attenuation, I took a RIS from 1.095 to 1.020 with WLP002 which advertises a average attenuation of 66.55% but I achieved 78.9% with it.
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Last edited by humann_brewing; 04-09-2009 at 03:35 PM.
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Old 04-09-2009, 03:50 PM   #3
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Good info, thanks. It has sort of turned into a combination of Wit/Belgian Tripel, but I'm not quite sure how it will turn out. I do worry about too much sweetness, perhaps I can overcome with dry hopping with more hops or citrus peel.

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Old 04-09-2009, 03:56 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hophead75 View Post
Good info, thanks. It has sort of turned into a combination of Wit/Belgian Tripel, but I'm not quite sure how it will turn out. I do worry about too much sweetness, perhaps I can overcome with dry hopping with more hops or citrus peel.
You might want to think about switching yeasts to a high gravity suited one such as one of these:

The last 2 go up to 85% attenuation as advertised.

WLP500 Trappist Ale Yeast
From one of the few remaining Trappist breweries remaining in the world, this yeast produces the distinctive fruitiness and plum characteristics. Excellent yeast for high gravity beers, Belgian ales, dubbels and trippels.
Attenuation: 75-80%
Flocculation: Medium to low
Optimum Fermentation Temperature: 65-72°F
Lower temperatures (under 65) will result in less fruity and more earthy beers.
Alcohol Tolerance: High

* WLP510 Belgian Bastogne Ale Yeast
PLATINUM STRAIN – May/June
A high gravity, Trappist style ale yeast. Produces dry beer with slight acidic finish. More ‘clean’ fermentation character than WLP500 or WLP530. Not as spicy as WLP530 or WLP550. Excellent yeast for high gravity beers, Belgian ales, dubbels and trippels.
Attenuation: 74-80%
Flocculation: Medium
Optimum Fermentation Temperature: 66-72°F
Alcohol Tolerance: High

WLP530 Abbey Ale Yeast
Used to produce Trappist style beers. Similar to WLP500, but is less fruity and more alcohol tolerant (up to 15% ABV). Excellent yeast for high gravity beers, Belgian ales, dubbels and trippels.
Attenuation: 75-80%
Flocculation: Medium to high
Optimum Fermentation Temperature: 66-72°F
Alcohol Tolerance: High

* WLP540 Abbey IV Ale Yeast
PLATINUM STRAIN – March/April
An authentic Trappist style yeast. Use for Belgian style ales, dubbels, tripples, and specialty beers. Fruit character is medium, in between WLP500 (high) and WLP530 (low).
Attenuation: 74-82%
Flocculation: Medium
Optimum Fermentation Temperature: 66-72°F
Alcohol Tolerance: High

* WLP545 Belgian Strong Ale Yeast
PLATINUM STRAIN – Nov./Dec.
From the Ardennes region of Belgium, this classic yeast strain produces moderate levels of ester and spicy phenolic character. Typically results in a dry, but balanced finish. This yeast is well suited for Belgian dark strongs, Abbey Ales, and Christmas beers.
Attenuation: 78-85%
Flocculation: Medium
Optimal Fermentation Temperature: 66-72F
Alcohol Tolerance: High
Review this strain

WLP550 Belgian Ale Yeast
Saisons, Belgian Ales, Belgian Reds, Belgian Browns, and White beers are just a few of the classic Belgian beer styles that can be created with this yeast strain. Phenolic and spicy flavors dominate the profile, with less fruitiness then WLP500.
Attenuation: 78-85%
Flocculation: Medium
Optimum Fermentation Temperature: 68-78°F
Alcohol Tolerance: Medium-High
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Aging: #67 Bareleywine 1.116 11/07/2012, Flanders 2 batches 1.056 and 1.060 12/12/11 and 3/26/12, Kriek, 1.052 12/11,
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Old 04-09-2009, 04:34 PM   #5
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Good Info again, but my LHBS only sells Wyeast. I just checked their site and the best Belg. Trappist High Gravity will go 72-76% with 12ABV, so I guess that is my best option for this batch. Good to know that advertised attenuation can be improved with the right conditions.

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Old 04-09-2009, 04:49 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hophead75 View Post
Good Info again, but my LHBS only sells Wyeast. I just checked their site and the best Belg. Trappist High Gravity will go 72-76% with 12ABV, so I guess that is my best option for this batch. Good to know that advertised attenuation can be improved with the right conditions.
Do you have the equipment to make a starter? I would always suggest a starter but even more in this situation so if you don't this might be a good time to get setup.

I am making a starter tonight for the brew this weekend and it is only a 1.048 beer.
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Fermenting: #82 Galaxy IPA, #83 Black IPA
Aging: #67 Bareleywine 1.116 11/07/2012, Flanders 2 batches 1.056 and 1.060 12/12/11 and 3/26/12, Kriek, 1.052 12/11,
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Old 04-09-2009, 04:56 PM   #7
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My Black Mass was an imperial (strong) wit with WLP400 and dark malts.

About 9% alcohol and it will kick your ass.

Mash low (150°F) and add your extract a few days into fermentation. I'd make a starter, as well.

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Old 04-09-2009, 06:15 PM   #8
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I've never used a starter, but it sounds like this will be the time for it. The few links that I looked at were talking about around 32oz starters, is bigger better? -Death Brewer, when you say add extracts a few days in, what's that all about. Giving the yeast less work to do at once? Do I need to create a slurry for the DME to be added or just dump it in?

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Old 04-09-2009, 06:21 PM   #9
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End with 4.5 gallons and no DME and pitch all of your yeast. Then, a few days later, boil your DME up in a half-gallon of water for 10 minutes to sterilize. Cool in an ice bath, and then dump straight into the fermenter.

This allows the yeast to grow in a more comfortable environment, then they are ready to rock when you dump the extract in.

Stepping up batches allows for better attenuation and cleaner fermentation.

I would definitely use a starter as well, at least a liter starter to have some nice healthy yeast ready for this bigger beer.

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Old 04-09-2009, 06:43 PM   #10
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Well, this certainly turned into a more complex brew than I expected, but with all the great info so far, I might actually improve my future brews. Thanks

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