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Old 10-04-2010, 09:12 PM   #1
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Default Restart fermentation

I am brewing a Dogfish Head clone that went into the fermenter with a 1.075 OG. I pitched a 2L starter of Wyeast 1099. Fermentation began almost immediately and went crazy for days. After 9 days, it died. I checked and the SG was 1.040. I swirled it in the carboy and let it sit, hoping it would keep going. Now, at day 12, it's still at 1.040.

How do I restart the fermentation process and get it down under 1.020? I don't have any more 1099 but I do have a couple of pkgs of Munton's Brewer's Yeast. Should I pitch them? Thanks for any suggestions.

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Old 10-04-2010, 09:37 PM   #2
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Did it experience a sudden drop in temp? You can try warming it up a bit but it might be a tad late now. There are lots of other issues that can cause a stuck fermentation, what was your exact process once the wort left the kettle? You can try pitching the dry yeast... it certainly won't hurt.

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Old 10-04-2010, 09:41 PM   #3
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I chilled the wort and poured it through a strainer/funnel into the carboy. I aerated it for about 15 minutes then pitched the yeast. Both the yeast starter and the wort were in the 72-75 degree range at the time. Sat the fermenter in a rubbermaid container of water with an aquarium heater. Water's been at 69 degrees constantly. At 10 days, I upped the thermometer to 72 and that's where it sits now.

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Old 10-04-2010, 09:55 PM   #4
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Hmm that's interesting. I'd ask about yeast viability but you made a nice big starter so that's out of the question...

Was this all-grain? What was your mash temp? A far-too-high mash temp could cause this (i.e. there are no more fermentables for the yeasties) due to a mis- or uncalibrated thermometer.

To jump start fermentation you could either add more yeast (but if the above is true, that won't help unless it's champagne yeast) or you could boil up some sugar and add it to the primary to wake the yeast up.

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Old 10-04-2010, 09:57 PM   #5
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It was an extract brew with steeped grains. Shouldn't be any big temp problems. Would sugar really make that much of a difference? Seems as if there's still a good amount of sugars in there.

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Old 10-04-2010, 10:29 PM   #6
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Yeah, if it's extract then it's clearly not a temp problem considering there was no mash

You could try a solution of sugar and yeast nutrient/energizer. Then again, DME would do the same thing.

I'd like to see what others would do but if all else fails I'd try repitch and DME addition.

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Old 10-04-2010, 10:38 PM   #7
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I'm with you - I'll see what others have to say tonight, then if all else fails, pitch the Muntons with a 1/2 lb. of DME.

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Old 10-04-2010, 10:48 PM   #8
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Oh, duh... your post just made me think of the obvious solution. Instead of pitching them separately into the primary, make a starter with the 0.5# DME and yeast. Pitch that mofo at just before the strong, primary fermentation.

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Old 10-05-2010, 12:28 AM   #9
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If it was mine... I would taste it... Does it taste sweet and sugary... or does it taste thick and malty with that characteristic flavor of un-fermentables....... which goes along with the question of what sort of DME did you use? Last trip I took to the LHBS -- they had about 100 flavors...

I would try re-starting a small sample with a bit of yeast nutrient and see what happens....

If all else fails and you *GOTTA* have it lower... There's always Beano...

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Old 10-05-2010, 03:40 PM   #10
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Alright - here's the plan for tonight. I'm going to boil a 1/2 gal. batch of wort with .5# DME and pitch 12g of Muntons into it. Once I see signs of fermentation, I'm going to pitch the whole thing into my primary, swirl it around, and pray. We'll see what happens! Of course, this will screw up all my hydrometer readings, so I don't know what the ABV will be, but as long as I get the FG down under 1.020 I'll be happy.

Taste wise, it's pretty darn close to Dogfish Head 90. The hop bitterness at this point is at finished levels. So, my next question is, do I still dry-hop it at the planned rate or back it off a notch or just forget dry-hopping it? Decisions, decisions.

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