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Old 02-16-2011, 09:04 PM   #1
pharmhouse
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Default Saison Fermentation & Bottling

I brewed my first saison 11 days ago using the Raison D'Saison all-grain recipe from Brewing Classic Styles. The recipe does not specific wether a secondary is necessary or not; an earlier section of the book states that a secondary is only necessary if noted in the recipe notes. I've seen other saison recipes that call for quite a long time in secondary. What do ya'll think?

I plan on corking this batch and bottle conditioning. Should I use the same yeast, 3724, or something else, and how much?


Thanks. beginner here.



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Old 02-16-2011, 09:16 PM   #2
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I'd use the same yeast for bottle conditioning. I've never added yeast to bottle and (knock on wood) I've never had a batch fail to carb, even up to 13% ABV.

I only secondary now if there's a good reason. Dry hopping, oak aging, or extended bulk aging are usually why I'll use a secondary.

I'm not familiar with that specific recipe, but generally if it's 7-8% ABV or lower, I'll primary for a month, then bottle, if it's higher than that, I may extend the primary to 6 weeks, and secondary anywhere from a month to many months.

EDIT: I'll secondary if I add finings such as gelatin, too. I seldom need to do that though.



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Old 02-16-2011, 11:39 PM   #3
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Could you share the recipe?

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Old 02-17-2011, 02:56 AM   #4
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10.5 lbs pilsener malt
0.75 lbs wheat malt
0.75 lbs munich malt
2 oz caramunich (steeping grains)
1.7 oz hallertau at 60
0.75 oz hallertau a 0
1 lb cane sugar

2.5 packages of yeast 3724

some notes: My carbon monoxide alarm went off during the sparge. I had to tend to that (turned out to be a false alarm thankfully) and it sat for a while and the temp dropped down to about 115F.
I pitched the yeast at just around 69F (as directed). This was my first saison, and it took a while to get the temp control down. It started bubbling within a couple hours of pitching. The temp increased way too much over the next couple of days, it got up over 100F! During this time krausen was prevalent and the airlock gradually decreased in activity, until it stopped! I got the temp back down to the low 70s and moved the carboy into a bigger location. At this time I increased the temp by a degree per day. When it hit 70-80 airlock activity returned. It was bubbling quite fast for 4 days or so. I've been increasing the temp about 1 degree per day. Now the bubbling is slowing down.

I emailed the wyeast lab tech about my temp increase mishap and he said not to worry about it and to try for a steady 90F.

Back to my original question: I have Brew Like a Monk and Farmhouse Ales, and they both offer a range of info, but I couldn't find specific info on when to use a secondary, if at all, and the amount of yeast to use for bottle conditioning. The books lead me to believe that saisons are brewed in many different ways, and there is no set outline to go by, but i really don't want to screw this one up !

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Old 02-17-2011, 03:03 AM   #5
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From your recipe, especially with all your mishaps(lol) don't rack. Leave be till clear, bottle and leave it for a minimum of 3 weeks, the longer the better as the 100 degree yeast flavors will mellow over time. Patience will probably make this into a tasty brew

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Old 02-17-2011, 03:05 AM   #6
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i brewed a saison in November and kegged in January with no use of a secondary. I let it sit in the primary for over a month and i've had no issues as of yet. just make sure you condition it long enough. mine is only now becoming pleasurable to drink one month of keg conditioning at lager temps.

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Old 02-17-2011, 03:31 AM   #7
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Thanks for the responses. So, do you think I should add a package of yeast before bottling too? The same strain or something like a champagne yeast? Or I could try to harvest yeast from a commercial bottle?

Side question: I've read multiple articles that mention that saisons were brewed in the fall and winter to have a refreshing brew in the spring and summer, but how did they manage to keep such a high fermentation temp during the winter? Is the "brew during winter for a crisp summer saison" story false?

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Old 02-17-2011, 03:41 AM   #8
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another question; what temp should the bottles be conditioned at? thanks again

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Old 02-17-2011, 04:56 AM   #9
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Bottle and let sit around 70. You wont need any extra yeast so bottle and forget. The idea of fall brew and summer drink is not unusual. Fermentation is done in a few days but left to condition for months leaves a clear clean brew with most off flavors havinging been cleaned up. Look at brett and other farmhouse beers using wild yeast. Those can take over a year or more to evolve..

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Old 02-17-2011, 05:02 AM   #10
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No need to add yeast at bottling unless you're filtering (then why bother... if you filter, you should keg) or you've left it for a LONG (read "about a year or so) time in the fermenter.



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