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Old 11-16-2005, 12:39 AM   #1
oregonNate
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Default BIG barleywine techniques

I have been thinking about brewing a really big 1.1+ barleywine, using all-grain of course. I have a few different ideas and would like to bounce them off everyone.

I have a 70 quart coleman extreme that can hold a lot of grain, but I only have a 8 gallon kettle for boiling. I also have an 0xygen tank and stone, so aeration shouldn't be a problem. Those are my equipment limitations.

Another given is that I have a batch of WLP013 London Ale Yeast IPA in primary right now. It will be giving up its yeast cake for this barleywine.

First option:
Load the cooler up with 25lbs of grain and do a first runnings beer. ProMash says that 25lbs of grain at 60%, producing 7 gallons of wort, boiling for 90 minutes and ending up with 5 gallons of 1.104 wort.

Second option:
Do a doble-doble batch, two 10lb mashes, using the wort from the first mash as the "water" for the second mash. I have a friend who did this and ended up with 1.115 wort. Problem is that it is currently stuck at around 1.04.

Third option:
1. Brew a 3 gallon batch of 1.08 wort and get the fermentation going into full gear.
2. On the same day, brew another tiny 2 gallon batch of super high gravity wort. Start with 5+ gallons and boil it for 3 hours until it is 1.150 or so. Put this in a carboy and in a fridge right away.
3. On the 3rd day of fermentation on the 3 gallon batch, take 2/3 a gallon of the super strong wort, heat it up to boiling, chill and aerate. Then "feed" it to the 3 gallon batch.
4. Repeat step 3 every few days until you run out of the 2 gallon batch. It should be enough for three feedings.

The first option sounds easiest... and I could do a second runnings batch. The gravity wouldn't be much over 1.1 and I may have problems with a stuck fermentation.

The second option isn't very difficult, but I'm afraid I would get the gravity too high and it wouldn't attenuate very well. I suppose I could add the high-gravity yeasts after the primary ale yeast finishes.

I think the third option would be a real pain, but it would probably be best for the yeast. Not sure if the yeast I have chosen for this batch will handle all of this anyway.

Thanks for any comments, suggestions, tips or any other help you can offer me.

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Old 11-16-2005, 03:13 AM   #2
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I'd go with option 2. Since barley wines are generally aged for six months or more, adding a slow fermenting wine or champaigne yeast works well. I'd add the wine yeast at the beginning, that way it will have a chance to multiply a bit. With a cake of ale yeast, it will dominate the early portion of the ferment.

My first few 1.1+ barley wines stalled around 1.050 and I added champaigne yeast then. My latest, I added a little distillers yeast along with the WL Cal V and it went all the way to 1.030 without a stop. Very clean fermentation.

You might consider batch sparging the grain afterwards and making a small beer.

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Old 11-16-2005, 03:30 AM   #3
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What do you think of WLP099 High Gravity Yeast? Would adding a 600ml starter of this along with the yeast cake from a previous batch make sense? Or would a starter of any standard wine or champaigne yeast work just as well?

I'll probably be doing that second batch sparge for small beer and then adding it to apple cider.

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Coming up: Foreign Stout
Primary:
#13 Smokedbowl Porter
Secondary:
#12 Doppelbock (lagering)
Kegged:
#11 Ratebeer's Brown Ale Revisited
#10 Back-forty Barleywine (Aging)
Bottled:
#9 Amarillo IPA
#8 Christmas Abbey
#7 Pumpkin Abbey
#6 Robust Porter
#5 Blackberry Wheat
#4 Double White

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Old 11-16-2005, 03:32 AM   #4
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I haven't tried it. Wine yeast works fine & is only a buck. Hope you have a really big fermenter for this batch. Pitching on a cake is not for small containers, I've got the stains on the ceiling to prove it.

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Old 11-16-2005, 03:49 AM   #5
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It's just a 7 gallon bucket... I've pitched on a yeast cake twice in the past without any problems. The highest gravity I've done so far is only 1.085, so I guess that isn't anything compared to a 1.1+ brew. Hopefully I will keep the stains off my ceiling as the wife would really not like that to much at all.

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Coming up: Foreign Stout
Primary:
#13 Smokedbowl Porter
Secondary:
#12 Doppelbock (lagering)
Kegged:
#11 Ratebeer's Brown Ale Revisited
#10 Back-forty Barleywine (Aging)
Bottled:
#9 Amarillo IPA
#8 Christmas Abbey
#7 Pumpkin Abbey
#6 Robust Porter
#5 Blackberry Wheat
#4 Double White

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Old 11-16-2005, 08:28 PM   #6
sdent
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What would be the benefit with starting out with a wine yeast and then adding a champaigne yeast? Why not just start with the champainge yeast?

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Old 11-16-2005, 09:04 PM   #7
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I think the idea is to add a little bit of Champaigne OR wine yeast along with a LOT of Ale yeast. The Ale yeast provides character early on, but the other yeast is there and growing all along so that when the Ale yeast gives up the ghost, it takes off running.

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Coming up: Foreign Stout
Primary:
#13 Smokedbowl Porter
Secondary:
#12 Doppelbock (lagering)
Kegged:
#11 Ratebeer's Brown Ale Revisited
#10 Back-forty Barleywine (Aging)
Bottled:
#9 Amarillo IPA
#8 Christmas Abbey
#7 Pumpkin Abbey
#6 Robust Porter
#5 Blackberry Wheat
#4 Double White

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Old 11-22-2005, 01:26 PM   #8
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I brewed this a couple days ago, longest brew day ever. It took me 12 and a half hours to complete the barleywine and the second runnings batch.

Ended up using the double mash technique (doble-doble) with a large decoction during the second mash and also boiled down 1qt of wort to carmalize it and add color. Ended up with 5 gallons of 1.111 wort and it started within an hour.

The fireworks are over on the fermentation, it went like crazy for a full 36 hours. It still has activity, so I hope the wine yeast is taking over.

__________________

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Coming up: Foreign Stout
Primary:
#13 Smokedbowl Porter
Secondary:
#12 Doppelbock (lagering)
Kegged:
#11 Ratebeer's Brown Ale Revisited
#10 Back-forty Barleywine (Aging)
Bottled:
#9 Amarillo IPA
#8 Christmas Abbey
#7 Pumpkin Abbey
#6 Robust Porter
#5 Blackberry Wheat
#4 Double White

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