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Old 01-19-2013, 09:49 PM   #1
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Default Very High Gravity Saison

Hi all,

This is my first post. I'm a new member. I have been reading threads for a couple of years now for advice, but I was apparently just too lazy to join.

I got second runnings from a local brewery's barley wine. I anticipated the OG to be about 1.070. I was going to make an imperial saison with WLP566 Saison II. I made a yeast starter about five days ago anticipating a high gravity.

I am brewing right now. Chilling the wort. The OG is 1.099! I guess I'll still pitch my starter, but will it take alright? should I pitch a high gravity yeast later?

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Old 01-20-2013, 02:31 AM   #2
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It will definitely start to ferment. You may be underpitching a little if you planned on 1.070, but mild underpitching of a saison (as opposed to drastic underpitching of an IPA) is okay in my book. White Labs lists the alcohol tolerance as medium, which is a little vague. If it quits before it's dry enough, you could add 530, 090, 099 or something else.

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Old 01-20-2013, 01:00 PM   #3
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Or dilute it. You won't get the planned bitterness/hopiness, but you'll get more beer!

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Old 01-20-2013, 06:05 PM   #4
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I ended up diluting it a little down to 1.090. It is fermenting very steadily right now.

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Old 01-21-2013, 01:55 PM   #5
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I also read a blog post once where the author recommended pitching into half the wort, and hold the other half for ~24 hours. That allows the cell-count to rise in a small environment (not underpitched) before hitting it with the full volume. It's an interesting idea, to say the least.

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Old 01-21-2013, 02:15 PM   #6
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That yeast is a monster. I made a 10% Saison, and it chugged right though it with no problems. I did swirl it a little every day once the fermentation slowed way down. This was fermented in the mid-60 to boot.

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Old 01-21-2013, 02:19 PM   #7
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Boy if you treat this yeast right, even warm it up towards the end to help it along...you could get %10 plus easy on this beer. That would be awesome.

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Old 02-07-2013, 02:27 AM   #8
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I just racked it to my secondary and it is 9.3% abv.

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Old 02-07-2013, 04:32 PM   #9
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What was the FG?

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Old 02-27-2013, 04:19 PM   #10
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Just kegged it on Sunday. FG is 1.012, so ABV is 10.4%. There is a very Belgian-y nose to it with strong banana coming through. The initial taste has a rich carmely maltiness, and it finishes with a subtle taste of alcohol. Considering it is a saison, it should be a little more carbonated, but it passes as a Belgian-style barelywine.

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