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Old 01-01-2011, 06:17 PM   #1
hmmmbeer
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Default Imperial Stout FG little high?

I did a search on here and got an old post but not sure it answered all my questions, so sorry for a repost on the same topic..sort of...
I brewed my first Imperial Stout and added a bit of brown sugar (maybe a cup/cup and a half) and a cup of cane sugar bringing my SG to 1.094. It didn't go crazy and need a blow-off hose like my Irish Stout but the fermentation stopped last night and it is not doing anything right now. I fermented it at around 60F with some flex but last night it just got so cold outside that where I had it fermenting it got down to around 52F, is this why it stopped fermenting at a FG of 1.022-24ish?
I went ahead and racked it into my SF vessel and returned it to the same area where it should stay above 50F until I get back from my deployment. Does anyone think it will kick back into action once it warms up a bit or is the yeast dead now?
Another question I had was is this temp a good/ideal temp to SF this Imperial Stout?
Any help would be greatly appreciated because I would love to come home after working hard in the desert for several months to an amazing Stout.

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Old 01-01-2011, 06:29 PM   #2
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You got ~75% attenuation, which is pretty normal. Attenuation usually drops, percentage-wise, with higher OGs. So 75% with a 1.094 isn't bad. It's probably "done" and not "stuck." Here are some tips for getting better attenuation:
http://beerdujour.com/Howtobrewabigbeer.htm

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Old 01-01-2011, 06:34 PM   #3
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1.022 isn't all that high of a FG on a big beer, but fermenting in the 50's is definitely going to slow down or stop the ferm on most ale yeasts. I think this bucket needs to be brought back up to the upper 60's to see if it will finish out.

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Old 01-01-2011, 06:38 PM   #4
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Thanks for the replies! I brought the temp up after racking the Stout into the SF vessel about an hour ago and just checked on it again (like checking to see if your new born baby is breathing while they are sleeping... often) and it is starting to pick up again... slow but there IS activity again (before there wasn't a single bubble for a few minutes of watching)! I think the temp was just too cold... we will see what it does after I get back! hmmmm beer!!!!!

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Old 01-01-2011, 07:27 PM   #5
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Because you see it bubbling again, does not mean it is resuming an active fermentation. It is releasing gasses, nothing more. Check your gravity with a hydrometer or refractometer for 3 days running. Equal readings = completion.

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Old 01-01-2011, 07:38 PM   #6
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Thank you "Vast reaction", I don't know that I will bother doing that at this point seeing how it's already in its second fermentation vessel (glass carboy) and aging at this time; unless there is something I'm not thinking of. PS, you are from (Gresham Oregon) where I'm orig. from and I still own a home there... off of Powell and 182nd.
Back to the topic though... is there something else I should do for the SF step that I dont know about/different from a low gravity beer? plus, should/can I refridgerate it for its SF? Any benefit to doing so?

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Old 01-01-2011, 08:36 PM   #7
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The sugar was probably about 1 lb (maybe slightly more), and would have contributed about 10 points. So your wort/malt gravity was probably about 1.084, so your yeast attenuation was 74%. It is probably close to finished, but I suspect the cold temperature stopped it before it's time.

Unfortunately when it gets cold, the yeast go dormant, and sink to the bottom. Now you have racked to secondary, you have left the majority of the live yeast in the old fermenter.

Don't worry, there is still some yeast left and given enough time, will continue to ferment out the beer; obviously need to be at a high enough temperature. I would just leave it in a place which will stay around 60 to 70 F and let it go for a couple of months. Just make sure there is liquid in the airlock and everything will be OK.

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