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Old 08-21-2012, 05:32 PM   #1
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Default Amylase and Stable Gravity

I have a wheat wine that finished very high (1.036) and added some amylase enzyme as directed along with some Lalvin EC-1118. A couple of days later, there has been no airlock activity, and the gravity has not budged a bit. Is it possible that there are proteins from a high percentage of wheat that the amylase is not capable of breaking down?
All in all, I think it will be a good beer with A LOT of aging time. My main question is will it be safe to bottle? I don't want anything blowing up on me, but after a few days of stable gravity readings I'm assuming that somewhere along the line the bottle of enzyme that I picked up just got denatured or is ineffective in this brew.
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Old 08-22-2012, 03:51 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by redkj View Post
I have a wheat wine that finished very high (1.036) and added some amylase enzyme as directed along with some Lalvin EC-1118. A couple of days later, there has been no airlock activity, and the gravity has not budged a bit. Is it possible that there are proteins from a high percentage of wheat that the amylase is not capable of breaking down?
All in all, I think it will be a good beer with A LOT of aging time. My main question is will it be safe to bottle? I don't want anything blowing up on me, but after a few days of stable gravity readings I'm assuming that somewhere along the line the bottle of enzyme that I picked up just got denatured or is ineffective in this brew.
Thanks
Amylase does nothing to proteins. It only works on starches. I don't think the fermentation stopped because there are too many unfermentables in the beer. I suspect the yeast were unhappy and decided to go on strike. Then you went and added some more yeast (strike breaking scabs) and they just couldn't work under those same conditions either.

What might work is to make a starter, and then once that is going vigorously, add it to the stuck batch. You need to givet the yeast a running start so they can tackle this difficult job
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Old 08-22-2012, 07:40 PM   #3
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Even the manufacturer's data sheet states that the Lalvin EC-1118 is prone to stuck fermentations. It states to restart stuck fermentations with a repitch of the same yeast at a rate of 40 grams per hectoliter.

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Old 08-22-2012, 07:45 PM   #4
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I guess I didn't realize that I starter was really necessary with the EC-1118. I thought that the viable cells in dry yeast was already vastly more than liquid. I did re-hydrate the yeast with warm water and them added some of the beer, a bit at a time to get the yeast acclimated. Between that and the alcohol tolerance of ~18% for that yeast I assumed that it wouldn't have any trouble with it. Are the conditions you're referring to simply the high "F"G, or is there more to it?

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Old 08-22-2012, 08:35 PM   #5
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EC-1118 is not a beer yeast, it's a wine/champagne yeast (Saccharomyces bayanus). i suspect you don't have stuck fermentation, instead you have achieved FG with the EC-1118 b/c it can't digest maltose. wine and champagne yeasts can only digest simple sugars. until you get a proper, maltose-chomping beer yeast in there you may well never get below your current gravity because the maltose will remain untouched.

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Old 08-22-2012, 09:56 PM   #6
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I think it was poorly worded on my part. I initially pitched US05, and after stopping at 1.036 for a couple of weeks, I re-pitched EC-1118 and amylase. Either way, I think it will turn out alright, as long as the EC-1118 isn't laying dormant ready to blow up my bottles as soon as they get capped. Perhaps it will taste sweet enough that my girlfriend will drink it, haha!

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Old 01-12-2013, 01:08 AM   #7
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Any update on this?

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Old 01-12-2013, 09:02 PM   #8
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I was just thinking about this beer last night, after trying the SA Double Bock for the first time. They taste strangely similar. Mine remained quite high, and never got below 1.030. After some aging however, it's getting really good. It's WAY sweet, but sometimes thats just what I'm craving. Certainly not anything that you want to have following a filling meal, but very good on it's own.

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