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Old 11-08-2009, 03:37 AM   #1
doggage
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Default Belgian Wit Sulfer

I brewed an all-grain Belgian Wit a couple weeks ago and used Wyeast 3944 Belgian Wit yeast. Just kegged it and it tastes horribly sulfuric and very watery--completely undrinkable. Any advice on avoiding this in the future? I haven't done many all-grain brews, and have had horrible luck compared to extract so far. Thinking about selling my mash tun and going back to extract.



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Old 11-08-2009, 06:45 AM   #2
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Can you elaborate on your temps and procedure? Maybe we can help you fix things for the future. I can assure you you'll love all-grain when you get the process down.



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Old 11-08-2009, 02:52 PM   #3
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Thank you. I’ve made some great beers with extract using full boils, so it’s tough to make the switch to all grain with these inconsistent results.

I’m not sure how much or what info you need, so I’ll summarize the whole process. I’m sure I’m leaving out some details.

My MLT is a 10-gallon Rubbermaid cooler that I use a copper manifold with. I heated the water in my MLT with a heat stick to 133, per the Promash report that I got with the kit. After doughing in, I hit 123, put the lid on, and let it sit for 20 minutes for the protein rest. Added 210 F water, mixed it again, covered, and let it rest for 30 for the saccharification rest. Then I vorlaufed through my pump to the top of the tun until I got clear runnings, and pumped the runnings to my keggle. I turned the flame on that immediately and measured the amount of wort I still needed for my pre-boil volume. I pumped that amount of 210 F water in through my valve on the bottom of the tun, stirred it up again, let it sit for 5 minutes, and pumped the runnings into my keggle.

After that I did my boil. I waited until I saw the hot break and started my hop additions. I used a 5-gallon paint strainer bag for all the additions (hops, coriander, etc). During the last 15 minutes of the boil I re-circulated through my CFC to sterilize it. I also whirlpooled while doing this, and I had put a copper scrubby on the end of my copper pickup tube in my keg. This was a 5-gallon batch, and I cooled it down very quickly to pitching temp (75). I had rehydrated the dry yeast that I used in a flask with a little water and I pitched it in my carboy after the wort.

It bubbled away great through a blow-off tube and after a week or so I sterilized an airlock and put that on. I didn't leave it for too long, only a couple weeks. But as soon as I took off the stopper to rack to my keg, I smelled a strong sulfur smell. The only thing I could think of was an infection, but I cleaned everything and used Starsan on everything.

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Old 11-08-2009, 03:04 PM   #4
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Sulfur smell is not uncommon in fermenting Wits as it is a by product of the yeasts, Let it age out before calling it bad. My Wits usually stink after fermenting but age very clean.

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Old 11-08-2009, 03:06 PM   #5
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Sulfur smell is not uncommon in fermenting Wits as it is a by product of the yeasts, Let it age out before calling it bad. My Wits usually stink after fermenting but age very clean.
+1....whether kegging or bottling, green beer is still green beer...if you brewed it "a couple weeks ago" then you are waaaay to early in tasting it and worrying about it.
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Old 11-08-2009, 04:02 PM   #6
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+1....whether kegging or bottling, green beer is still green beer...if you brewed it "a couple weeks ago" then you are waaaay to early in tasting it and worrying about it.
It's always been my understanding that drinking Wits while they're still young and fresh is the best way to go about it. I usually keg my wit after two weeks in primary and drink it about 3-5 days later. I've never noticed a bad sulfer smell after fermentation was complete though. While fermenting, yes.
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Old 11-08-2009, 04:44 PM   #7
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It's always been my understanding that drinking Wits while they're still young and fresh is the best way to go about it. I usually keg my wit after two weeks in primary and drink it about 3-5 days later. I've never noticed a bad sulfer smell after fermentation was complete though. While fermenting, yes.
That will depend on the yeast you use. Sulfur smell nearly always will age out. As far as when to drink a wit, that is like everything else in Home Brewing, personal preference and taste. Wheat beers are ready to drink sooner but that doesn't always mean they are better that way. My wits spend a week in a primary, 2 in a secondary then slowly carbonate over a 10 day period.
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Old 11-08-2009, 04:47 PM   #8
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The last brew I made thats ready was a wit. It was very sulfury during fermentation. Once bottled for 2 weeks I tried a couple and they were for very boring and very very watery tasting. Not enjoyable at all. I gave it another 2-3 weeks in the bottle and now its amazing! The watery mouthfeel is gone.

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Old 11-08-2009, 05:10 PM   #9
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Belgian wits are not like Hefes or wheat beers...they still can benefit from some conditioning time.

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Old 11-08-2009, 06:01 PM   #10
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Oh man, you don't know how happy this makes me. I was so frustrated after having followed everyone's directions, videos, advice to a T.

How long and at what temperature should I age this in the keg? Is room temp good or would I do better to crash cool, etc? (I'm thread-jacking my own thread here.)



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