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Old 06-01-2008, 05:18 AM   #1
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Default Need advice for Wee Heavy aging schedule

I just brewed a Wee Heavy yesterday. The recipe is from the LHBS.

9lbs light/amber extract
2 lbs UK pale ale malt
8 oz UK light crystal
4 oz dark crystal malt
4 oz scottish peat malt
15 HBU bittering hops
nottingham dry yeast
OG 1.073

How long should I age it during primary,secondary and bottle.

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Old 06-01-2008, 05:33 AM   #2
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I seldom use a secondary any more, the fear of autolysis is way overblown except in hefeweizens. I would leave this for 6 weeks in the primary fermentation vessel and then bottle or keg and then leave it at least 6 months before drinking it.

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Old 06-01-2008, 08:02 PM   #3
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It will depend on how strong the peated malt comes through. 4oz may not seem like it but it is alot.

Next time do everything the same and drop the peated and use Scottish yeast

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Old 06-02-2008, 02:07 AM   #4
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My Wee-Heavy sat in primary for 4 weeks I then racked it to a clearing tank where it sat for 8 more weeks. I then keged it, carbed it and it's been sitting in the kezzer at 40* since the first of the year. With every month it gets better and better.

With something this big it will need lots of time to age well.

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Old 06-02-2008, 04:47 AM   #5
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I forgot the exact recipe but I made a wee heavy about a year ago I think I used 8oz peat smoked malt in a 15lb grain bill. it came out nice but very strong, the flavor makes a stout seem watery (the smokeyness brings out the alcohol burn). It needed 6 months before it was good and just a few days ago I tried one close to the one year mark and while its good I could see it aging 1-2 more years. it can be a really good incredibly complex beer but its a long term investment especially with the peat smoked malt.

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Old 06-03-2008, 01:23 AM   #6
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I'll give it 4-6 weeks in primary than bottle. I have some space in the cellar were I can stash them for 6 months or more. Will be looking forward to drinking some during the holidays .

If I brew this recipe again I'll try it without peat malt and with the scottish liquid yeast.


Thank you for the replies

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Old 06-03-2008, 01:41 AM   #7
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We made a Wee Heavy as our third (?) beer last year; we got the Northern WH kit and added 1 ounce of peated malt. The beer was good except we didn't carb it enough. You can still taste the single ounce of peated malt; IMO it would have been better without it.

I think we used the Wyeast Irish Ale yeast (LHBS didn't have the Scottish Ale yeast).

Since then, I've found that I like Belgians more than Scotch Ale...but I still like the malt monsters so I won't turn a Scotch down.

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Old 06-03-2008, 07:00 PM   #8
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Scottish ales need no peated malt. They don't brew beer with it in Scotland using it instead for making whiskey. A very, very faint smoky note will be present just from the crystal malts used. They are very lightly carbonated so will be "flat" for those of us used to domestic beer. If you try to increase the carbonation you may find that you quickly get a carbonic bite that is unpleasant in this style.

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Old 06-03-2008, 10:23 PM   #9
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We've never used peated in our Scottish Ales either. Most people agree that it's really not needed. As far as aging, one of ours sat for a year and was excellent.

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Old 07-04-2008, 03:32 AM   #10
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Just bottled this at 4 1/2 weeks in primary. It was remarkably smooth & clear with a mild smoky peat taste, but less malty sweetness than I expected. I am really looking forward to seeing how it develops in the bottle.

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