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Old 09-18-2009, 05:57 PM   #1
redalert
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Default How long for a 1.070 Belgian in primary?

Hi guys,

I am fairly new to the brew game and I would just like some feedback on how you guys treat the bigger beers especially Belgians and what you found out from experience gives you the best results. If you're brewing a semi-big belgian of 1.070 how long do you keep it on the primary yeast cake. Also and I know this has been discussed ad nauseum. In your opinion will the beer improve if I age it for at least 2 months in secondary or is bottle conditioning the way to go. Suppose I just cold-crash, transfer to keg, and leave it at 35F for 2 months. Thanks.

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Old 09-18-2009, 07:18 PM   #2
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Belgians are notorious for being long fermenters. I had one that took two months to reach final gravity. Just keep checking it with your hydrometer and be patient. Age is definately your friend with belgians.

As far as whether to use secondary... the only time I use them anymore is when I'm adding something to the beer. Otherwise, I'll bottle/keg and let it sit for a few months. If you want to keg it....seal the keg and set it where you normally condition bottles. Not in the fridge. I normally like to bottle belgians as I find they're better between 3-6 months. I don't like to let kegs sit around for that amount of time.

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Old 09-18-2009, 07:29 PM   #3
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As far as the hydrometer is concerned I got 1.011 after 2 weeks which is within the style parameters (Belgian Blonde Ale). I was just wondering whether I should leave it on the primary longer. This Sunday will be 3 weeks total in primary.

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Old 09-19-2009, 12:37 AM   #4
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Ive brewed a handfull of belgians and length of fermentation was dependant on the yeast. Belgian wit yeast 3944 has always taken bare minimum of two and a half weeks. In fact one took three weeks. Using wyeast 1214 the fermentation was a lot faster. I also have always tasted my brews when i put them in the secondary. All of the brews that were of high gravity always had a hot taste. After a couple weeks in the secondary it was totally gone................hope this helps

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Old 09-19-2009, 01:14 AM   #5
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Take another hydrometer reading and see if it has changed. If it has, then the fermentation is not done. If it has, then it's done and you should probably wait until the beer clears before taking the next step. I typically cold crash at this point to get more yeast to flocculate, then I keg it, carb it, then let it condition as long as it needs.

IMHO, I don't think it would matter whether you condition in bulk or in bottles.

-Steve

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