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Old 10-18-2005, 12:33 PM   #1
HomerT
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Default Higher than normal OG? Problem?

Well, last night I made a batch of Northern Brewer's Winter Warmer. I missed the OG, by a bunch. Here's the recipe:

Winter Warmer = O.G. 1.066
0.75 lbs Simpson Crystal
0.25 lbs Simpson Chocolate
9.9 lbs Gold Malt Syrup
1 oz Norther Brewer Hops (60min)
1 oz Styrian Goldings (30min)
1 oz Kent Goldings (1min)
Wyeast #1728 Scottish Ale Yeast 69~73%

Ok, so the recipe called for 1.5 gallons of water in the boil. I decided to use almost 2 to account for some of the boil off. I steeped the grains for 15min as water heated. Pulled the grains, got a boil going, removed form heat and added the LME and returned to a boil. I added the NB hops and started the timer. At around 20min in, I had a boil over. Got the pot switched to another burner, cleaned up the mess and tossed in the Styrian hops at 30min mark. Went smoothly, tossed a Whirfloc tablet at 55min mark, tossed the Kent Goldings at 59min and then removed at 60min for an ice bath. CHilled to 120F and mixed with 2.5 gallons of cold water in the fermenter. I had a nylon mesh bag in the fermenter to remove the hops/boil trub. Pulled that out. Topped it off at 5-gallons and aerated well with a wisk. Took a temp reading and a wort sample. Temp was 78F, so I pitched the Wyeast (smacked 24hrs in advance...fully swollen). I attached the airlock, filled with Vodka and started cleanup.

Here is the issue. I checked the temp of my wort sample, and it was 75F. CHecked my OG and it read 1.081. The target was 1.066! I did notice the sample was cloudy, as if some of the hops might have gotten past my strain bag. WHat could cause such a high OG? Was it the extra boil volume? Could the hops/trub in suspension give me a false reading? If it realy is that high, do I have an issue? I really want to RDWHAHB, but this is just my second batch, and I am a little concerned.

-Todd



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Old 10-18-2005, 12:48 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HomerT
The target was 1.066!
-Todd
That my friend will be a wee heavy and will need some aging to mellow out but It'll be just fine. I've got one that started at 1.074 in the secondary right now.

With that formula, you were targeting 1.076 not 1.066. 10 pounds of LME is a heck of a lot. But with 35 IBU it will be nicely ballenced.

The hops did not throw your gravity off. The gravity reads off the density of the liquid so only what is soluable affects it.

Plug that formula in here and you'll see: http://hbd.org/cgi-bin/recipator/recipator


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Old 10-18-2005, 01:05 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ScottT
That my friend will be a wee heavy and will need some aging to mellow out but It'll be just fine. I've got one that started at 1.074 in the secondary right now.

With that formula, you were targeting 1.076 not 1.066. 10 pounds of LME is a heck of a lot. But with 35 IBU it will be nicely ballenced.

The hops did not throw your gravity off. The gravity reads off the density of the liquid so only what is soluable affects it.

Plug that formula in here and you'll see: http://hbd.org/cgi-bin/recipator/recipator
I got the target OG from the NB site and the ingredient kit. Is the wee heavy similar to the WInter Warmer? As for aging, I was planning on three weeks in the secondary and 4~5 weeks in bottles before chilling. SOund about right? I am hoping to have this ready for X-mas.

-Todd
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Old 10-18-2005, 01:16 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ScottT
That my friend will be a wee heavy and will need some aging to mellow out but It'll be just fine. I've got one that started at 1.074 in the secondary right now.

With that formula, you were targeting 1.076 not 1.066. 10 pounds of LME is a heck of a lot. But with 35 IBU it will be nicely ballenced.

The hops did not throw your gravity off. The gravity reads off the density of the liquid so only what is soluable affects it.

Plug that formula in here and you'll see: http://hbd.org/cgi-bin/recipator/recipator
In using that site, what type of Crystal and chocolate do I pick? I don't see Simpson listed, and there are so many 10L, 20L etc.

Sorry for the Newbie questions.
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Old 10-18-2005, 01:25 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HomerT
In using that site, what type of Crystal and chocolate do I pick? I don't see Simpson listed, and there are so many 10L, 20L etc.

Sorry for the Newbie questions.
When in doubt of the origin, I try to err on the conservative side and pick the American varient (typically slightly lower extraction rates, color ratings lean towards middle of the road).

As for what crystal you have ... do your remember what color it was? The different numbers next to each type of crystal indicate how dark each type is. Might just have to guess.
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Old 10-18-2005, 01:27 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HomerT
In using that site, what type of Crystal and chocolate do I pick?
The steeped grains wont contribute appreciably to the OG, just the color. In recipator you can just put in the syrup and the hops and it'll calculate everything except the color correctly.
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Old 10-18-2005, 01:38 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by El Pistolero
The steeped grains wont contribute appreciably to the OG, just the color. In recipator you can just put in the syrup and the hops and it'll calculate everything except the color correctly.
True. That pound of grain is only going to give you about a gravity point or two, so it's not really a big deal if you leave them out, or just guess at their stats.

Now, if your really curious, you can check out Simpsons Malt page. Only catch is that they have their color and extraction stats in european units as the company is based in the UK.
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Old 10-18-2005, 01:44 PM   #8
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Thanks for the help guys. This site continues to offer the best information!

-Todd (who is now much less worried about his brew)

PS. as of this morning, the air-lock was chugging away nicely.

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Old 10-18-2005, 02:14 PM   #9
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Very high gravity worts might get stuck because the yeast can't handle the alcohol levels. The Scottish ale yeast is a good choice, but if the ferment stops around 1.030 add a packet of champaign yeast to the secondary. Keep it in the secondary at least two eeks, three would be better.

Also, this type of ale will take a few months of aging to be really drinkable.

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Old 10-18-2005, 09:12 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HomerT
In using that site, what type of Crystal and chocolate do I pick? I don't see Simpson listed, and there are so many 10L, 20L etc.

Sorry for the Newbie questions.

Simpsons is a British crystal. I just used 50L not knowing how dark it was.
British Chocolate is on there and that's what you use.


As far as aging, just let it firment out and that will take at least 3 weeks for both primary and secondary. Mine is still bubbling at 1 every 40 seconds and it's been going for 2 1/2 weeks. I still give mine a week of cold conditioning to clear it up then bottle. I plan to be trying it at Christmas but it will only get better with time. Give it a try. It should be drinkable.


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Primary: Empty

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Bottle Conditioning: Oatmeal Stout

Drinking from Keg: Ordinary Bitter, Kolsch

Drinking bottled: Brown Autumn Wee Heavy
Hefe Weizen
Peaches and Cream Weizen


"This is grain, which any fool can eat, but for which the Lord intended a more divine means of consumption... Beer!"
-Robin Hood, Prince of Thieves, Friar Tuck.

Next up: Hefe Weizen


Last edited by ScottT; 10-18-2005 at 09:18 PM.
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