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Old 02-14-2008, 12:07 AM   #1
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Default High Gravity Secondary? at 70' or 50'?

I've brewed a high gravity ale w/ WLP099 (super high gravity wyeast). I fermented it upstairs at 72', but I think I may let it clear in a secondary for a while.

I'm wondering, should I bother?
At what point do you say, yes this beer should age for a while before bottling?
At what point do you say, it will be aging long enough that I should use a secondary?
and
If so, upstairs at ~72'f or downstairs at ~52'f?

Edit: to clarify, it fermented from 1.110 down to 1.013. It's been about 3 weeks now.

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Old 02-14-2008, 12:14 AM   #2
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Wow that really fermented down!

If it were me I'd age that for 3-4 months in secondary (watch your airlock level!), add a couple grams of rehydrated dry yeast to the bottling bucket along with my priming sugar and then do another 6-8 months in the bottle.

As for your question, I generally make session beers but I age anything over 6% for at least a month in secondary before hitting the bottles. I don't know if it actually makes a difference but I have it stuck in my head that bulk conditioning is more beneficial than just bottle conditioning on it's down.

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Old 02-14-2008, 12:33 AM   #3
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Cooler would be better. You didn't need to use the super high gravity yeast on that beer. The regular CA yeast would have worked fine.

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Old 02-14-2008, 12:35 AM   #4
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Wow, that fermented out very well. I'd want to age anything that high in gravity for 3-4 months in the 60's.

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Old 02-14-2008, 12:36 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bradsul
Wow that really fermented down!
Yeah no kidding! That WLP099 is some serious yeast!

Thanks. I figured it would be a good idea to let it age in the carboy. I think I'll definitely do that. I haven't verified that it's done fermenting, but I'll check after a couple days before I do rack off.

Is the 3-4 month an widely accepted time frame for bulk aging of a HG Ale like this?
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Old 02-14-2008, 12:37 AM   #6
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I doubt it's going to get any lower unless the fermentables were a lot of sugar.

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Old 02-14-2008, 12:37 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brewsmith
Cooler would be better. You didn't need to use the super high gravity yeast on that beer. The regular CA yeast would have worked fine.
Really? Maybe I should dump some more concentrated wort in? Its supposed to do up to like 15%ABV... Is it too late?
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Old 02-14-2008, 12:44 AM   #8
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No, I'd leave it alone now. You are going to throw off the bitterness, and possibly cause the yeast to stall out on a late addition now. I wasn't trying to say that the yeast was a bad choice, just that it wasn't necessary. CA Ale yeast will get in that neighborhood easily if it's fresh and healthy. See here:
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthread.php?t=54773

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Old 02-14-2008, 01:29 AM   #9
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So, is there anything wrong with taking it down to 50 something degrees?

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Old 02-14-2008, 01:59 AM   #10
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No, as long as it's done fermenting.

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