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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Fermentation & Yeast > Wlp99 High Gravity Help/critique on process
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Old 09-20-2013, 07:35 PM   #1
Hopper5000
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Default Wlp99 High Gravity Help/critique on process

Hey all,

So a buddy of mine and I are thinking about doing a big beer (barleywine) up into the 15 to 20% range.

I have been reading up on the dog fish head 120min IPA clone to get an idea of what I should be doing.

The plan is to use two mash tuns to get some wort in the 1.12 to 1.14 range for something like a 7 or 8 gallon batch. Going to use a preliminary yeast such as wlp7 or something to get some character and then after about 3 or 4ish days pitch the wlp99 in there with some nutrient as well.

I was reading that you are supposed to aerate wlp99 multiple times within the first 4 days. Is this really true? Like say I pitch the wlp99 on day 3 and burst it with some pure 02 (is this even a good idea that far into the original fermentation?) then am I supposed to dose again a couple of times a day for 4 days? Seems like that would just oxidize the beer?

I was reading also that you should stagnate the additions of the 99 over 3 or 4 days while adding nutrient each time and that is why one should dose with 02 so often. This doesn't really make sense to me and I am inclined to just pitch a big slurry all at once. Is this the rationale for multiple 02 additions?

I was thinking of just making a multi-step starter but I will need almost a trillion cells for this brew so it seems like it may be a better idea to make a session ale that's about 3 or 4% with wlp99 first and then use that slurry. Thoughts?

As for the later sugar additions I was seeing a method where you dose the brew with 6 to 12oz in the morning and evening for multiple days until you get up to the desired alcohol % or it poops out. This is done by taking some wort out and then whisking the sugar in the wort and putting it back in. This seems pretty crazy to me as there is no way to make the sugar sanitary and it seems like you would just oxidize the beer. I know the brew would be at pretty high alcohol content and that's the rational for not worrying too much about sanitation, but I would still be afraid of getting brett in there on accident.

The alternative is to boil the sugar in a little bit of water to sanitize it but then you are potentially diluting the brew with a 1/2 to gallon of water with multiple top offs and the fast that corn sugar is 100% fermentable. I guess this can't be avoided though. Any thoughts on alternatives?

So those are my main wonderings about the process. I know that keeping the temp down will be important too.

Any thoughts or comments would be much appreciated. Thanks.

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Old 09-23-2013, 03:09 AM   #2
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Anyone?

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Old 09-23-2013, 03:19 AM   #3
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I love that yeast for big beers, but you need to follow some rules the yeast has laid down.

Pitch rate isn't as important as how much work the yeast has to do. You can either pitch the yeast multiple times during the process with nutrient, or stagger the wort additions in which you feed it.

For my Utopias-esque brew, I actually kept adding higher and higher gravity wort to the fermenter, eventually arriving at my target volume and gravity. Its a hellavua undertaking. But that yeast needs TLC. It is not a pitch and forget strain.

Let me know if you have any issues. I use that strain often.

Aaron

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Old 09-23-2013, 03:33 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Hopper5000 View Post
Hey all,

So a buddy of mine and I are thinking about doing a big beer (barleywine) up into the 15 to 20% range.

I have been reading up on the dog fish head 120min IPA clone to get an idea of what I should be doing.

The plan is to use two mash tuns to get some wort in the 1.12 to 1.14 range for something like a 7 or 8 gallon batch. Going to use a preliminary yeast such as wlp7 or something to get some character and then after about 3 or 4ish days pitch the wlp99 in there with some nutrient as well.

I was reading that you are supposed to aerate wlp99 multiple times within the first 4 days. Is this really true? Like say I pitch the wlp99 on day 3 and burst it with some pure 02 (is this even a good idea that far into the original fermentation?) then am I supposed to dose again a couple of times a day for 4 days? Seems like that would just oxidize the beer?

I was reading also that you should stagnate the additions of the 99 over 3 or 4 days while adding nutrient each time and that is why one should dose with 02 so often. This doesn't really make sense to me and I am inclined to just pitch a big slurry all at once. Is this the rationale for multiple 02 additions?

I was thinking of just making a multi-step starter but I will need almost a trillion cells for this brew so it seems like it may be a better idea to make a session ale that's about 3 or 4% with wlp99 first and then use that slurry. Thoughts?

As for the later sugar additions I was seeing a method where you dose the brew with 6 to 12oz in the morning and evening for multiple days until you get up to the desired alcohol % or it poops out. This is done by taking some wort out and then whisking the sugar in the wort and putting it back in. This seems pretty crazy to me as there is no way to make the sugar sanitary and it seems like you would just oxidize the beer. I know the brew would be at pretty high alcohol content and that's the rational for not worrying too much about sanitation, but I would still be afraid of getting brett in there on accident.

The alternative is to boil the sugar in a little bit of water to sanitize it but then you are potentially diluting the brew with a 1/2 to gallon of water with multiple top offs and the fast that corn sugar is 100% fermentable. I guess this can't be avoided though. Any thoughts on alternatives?

So those are my main wonderings about the process. I know that keeping the temp down will be important too.

Any thoughts or comments would be much appreciated. Thanks.
Let's take this in steps. As far as yeast goes make a basic beer around 1.040 with a low amount of hops and if they are the same hops as the barely wine even better and use the 007. Then pitch the big beer on top of that yeast cake. As far as o2 goes make sure you aerate really really well in the beginning but I wouldn't suggest doing it again. Also I would add sugar to as little water as possibe , boil to sanitize and add to fermenter. I would do this on day 3 and every other day until desired gravity. A pound of sugar will add roughly .009 to your wort. After the 007 finished pitch the 99
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Old 09-24-2013, 06:27 AM   #5
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Thanks fir the tips guys. So you wouldn't dose with 02 when pitching the 99?

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Old 09-24-2013, 05:15 PM   #6
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I wouldn't. And Jon palmer agrees:-)

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Old 09-24-2013, 06:53 PM   #7
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ok, i was just thinking that the 99 would go through it's reproduction phase and would need some 02 for that but I also understand the rational that it could be detrimental in already fermenting beer.

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Old 09-25-2013, 01:27 AM   #8
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Let's take this in steps. As far as yeast goes make a basic beer around 1.040 with a low amount of hops and if they are the same hops as the barely wine even better and use the 007. Then pitch the big beer on top of that yeast cake. As far as o2 goes make sure you aerate really really well in the beginning but I wouldn't suggest doing it again. Also I would add sugar to as little water as possibe , boil to sanitize and add to fermenter. I would do this on day 3 and every other day until desired gravity. A pound of sugar will add roughly .009 to your wort. After the 007 finished pitch the 99
I'm planning a barley wine for next year. So this has got me interested.

Would it work to oxygenate the wort in the BK before pitching the big beer on the 007 yeast cake? Or is this a bad idea?
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Old 09-25-2013, 06:02 AM   #9
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I'm planning a barley wine for next year. So this has got me interested.

Would it work to oxygenate the wort in the BK before pitching the big beer on the 007 yeast cake? Or is this a bad idea?
Yeah that would work you just have to make sure your wort in under 80 degrees before starting to aerate. Anything over 80 and you get hot side aeration which from what I have read basically make certain compounds stay in the wort and you will get oxygenated beer in the end instead of just oxygenated wort. If you have never had an oxidized beer it usually tastes metallic and definitely not good
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Old 09-25-2013, 06:24 PM   #10
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Thanks.

I usually cool to pitching temp before transferring. I'll just end up with some trubby wort.

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