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Old 08-10-2010, 05:09 AM   #1
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Default Imperial Peach Wheat

So tonight I brewed up what will eventually be an Imperial Peach Wheat, with a bit of improv along the way.

Initially, it was supposed to be a 5 gallon batch, but one of the pots I used to boil water tipped (after it was cooled) and I lost about a gallon of water. I thought about replacing it with tap water, but I didn't want to risk it and decided to stay with the 4 gallons I had and see how it ended up. Here's what went in to it:

Steeped @155-160 F for 30 min in 2.5 gal. of water:
1 lb Crystal 15L
8.5 oz Acidulated Malt
4 oz Belgian Biscuit Malt (more on this later)

Sparged grain bag w/ 0.5 gal water @ 160 F

Then added:
6 lbs Bavarian Wheat Dry Extract
3 lbs Light LME
1 lb Organic Honey

Brought to a boil, then added:
2 oz Hallertauer pellets

Boiled for 60 min.

Final vol: 4.1 gal.
O.G.: 1.108

Pitched with a big active batch of WLP001 from a local brewery and one full 12 oz. bottle of Sierra Nevada Kellerweis. Fermentation was active less than 2 hours later.

I plan on letting this ferment for two weeks, then racking it on to about 12 lbs of pureed organic peaches and aging it for a few months before bottling.

I added the Belgian Biscuit not realizing that it needed to be properly mashed in order for it to do any good. (Hey man, this was only my 3rd beer!) Will it do anything at all with the way I used it?

I'm worried it might end up a bit sweet, or with too much alcohol. Any comments, advice, or thoughts?

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Old 08-10-2010, 11:48 AM   #2
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Interesting combination. If I put all your ingredients into Beer Smith, it gives an OG estimate of 1.111 for a 4gal batch, so you're in there with your OG. BS estimates a final gravity of 1.024, which would give you about an 11.5% beer.

I've only done one fruit beer, but I used about 2.5lbs of raspberries and blackberries for a 5gal batch and you can definitely taste the fruit in the final product. Peaches can be a little milder in flavor, so maybe more is better. I'll have to let someone else comment on that.

Let us know how it comes out. I wouldn't worry about it being sweet, but it will likely be pretty high in alcohol.

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Old 08-11-2010, 01:31 AM   #3
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Ok, update!

When I checked the beer this morning, it was fermenting like it was possessed and there was a whole mess of yeast around.



The beer is in a 6 gal. better bottle, so I figured there would be enough room but apparently not. I also noticed that the fermometer on it read 77 F (yikes!). So, i put it in a tub of water and made a makeshift blowoff tube out of the tubing I use to transfer and stuck the end of it in a bucket of sanitizer. After I got off work the beer was down to 68 F. Haven't taken a gravity reading yet, but I will once all the activity dies down.


I was thinking that 12 lbs. of peaches might be too much. Anyone have any thoughts on this?

I was also considering adding another gallon of water (or maybe more) when I rack on to the peaches. Right now, the beer will likely end up around 12% and I think that will be too strong. I was originally aiming for around 9%.

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Old 08-14-2010, 11:09 PM   #4
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Another update: After 5 days, the beer is now sitting at ~1.035. Still bubbling once every 10 seconds or so. Had a little taste, it was a little boozy and had some belgian yeasty notes. Coming along nicely!

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Old 08-16-2010, 01:31 AM   #5
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Please keep posting progress; I am looking at doing a Peach for SWMBO and friends. I made a Raspberry (which I bottled last week) that came out really nice. I was thinking about adding fresh peach pure, concentrated yet fresh. I am very interested what you find out.

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Old 08-16-2010, 01:04 PM   #6
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Here is my plan as of now:

Next week, I'll rack to secondary on top of the peaches (that will have been two weeks in primary). I was considering adding some high gravity ale yeast or maybe some wine yeast to help the fermentation along, as it is already north of 10%.

After two months or so on the peaches, rack to tertiary for another month, then bottle.

This, of course, is only if I can be patient enough to wait that long

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Old 08-16-2010, 02:24 PM   #7
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This sounds delicious. Keep us posted on the results!

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Old 08-17-2010, 03:48 PM   #8
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Another update: I added 7 lbs of peaches to the fermentor this morning (after 8 days in primary). No racking to secondary or anything. Gave the carboy a good shake to get all the yeast agitated again. I wanted to make sure that there would be enough healthy yeast to take care of fermenting the peaches. I was worried about adding fresh yeast into a beer that's already above 10%, so I thought it best to just stick with the WLP001 in there and hope it attenuates enough. (or maybe I'm just being impatient)

In another two weeks, I think I will rack to secondary on top of the rest of the peaches and then let it sit for a few months.

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Old 08-17-2010, 05:26 PM   #9
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This is pretty epic for your 3rd beer. I'm still humming away making Amber Ales....

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Old 08-17-2010, 05:32 PM   #10
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it's good to experiment early on. hopefully your techniques are all up to par as a beginner brewer. sounds like you're doing well, though.

if you run into attenuation problems perhaps you can add some yeast energizer and yeast nutrient to get her fermenting again. i think it was a good idea to add the peaches to the primary. did you do anything to the peaches other than pit them and throw them in whole? if you add more be sure to macerate them in the blender to give more surface area exposure & hopefully increase the overall peach flavor. this is what i just did for my peach cobbler braggot experiment i threw together on a whim the other day. as someone stated the peach flavor will most likely be very mild.

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