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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Extract Brewing > Racked onto fruit...........no secondary fermentation
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Old 05-18-2007, 12:34 AM   #1
Steve-oh
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Default Racked onto fruit...........no secondary fermentation

So, after the primary fermentation finished for my summer wheat, I racked it onto about 1 gallon of blackberry puree (blackberries sanitized with a campden tablet). It's been over 48 hours without any airlock activity. I haven't taken and gravity readings after the racking, but should I be expecting a secondary fermentation due to the sugars in the berries?

Any immediate advice?

I followed this recipe, http://www.stoutbillys.com/stout/rec...)/E617A87B.htm, not to a perfect T, but used it as a guide.

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Old 05-18-2007, 12:59 AM   #2
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I depends largely on if your yeast have "run out of gas" doing their primary task during primary fermentation. You should not expect a vigorous fermentation seven to ten days after initial pitching.

Your yeast have had their fill of sugar, made lots of alcohol and Co2 and now they are fat, lazy, sleepy or dead.

Don't worry though, you could add more yeast if you want (my opinion is that your beer is probably fine with the alcohol content it currently has) Just because you don't see the active fermentation you noticed before doesn't mean it isn't happening, there is plenty of yeast still in suspension and will gladly do it's job on your puree.

Secondary fermentation should be more considered as "clearing and conditioning". It's your beer's chance to condition, let particulate matter settle out and for your beer to "meld" or blend it's flavor and charecter. It will emerge from this phase as bright, clear and matured beer that's ready for priming and further maturing and conditioning in bottles.

Remember, even after this time with the puree, there will still be enough active yeast to carb your beer by feasting yet again on corn sugar or dry malt extract, which ever you use to carb with. Congratulations! You're almost there.

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Old 05-18-2007, 01:51 PM   #3
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I haven't seen any fermentation activity the few times I have added fruit to the secondary.

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Old 05-18-2007, 02:46 PM   #4
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I just racked onto some raspberries last night, this morning my airlock was active again and a new krauzen had formed.

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Old 05-18-2007, 09:57 PM   #5
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Crap. Well, I took a gravity reading and it was 1.012 (no higher than it was before I added the berries) so I racked into my carboy and I'm gonna give it a week or two. One thing that stood out to me was the distinct bitter smell it had. Any comments?

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Old 05-18-2007, 10:02 PM   #6
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I don't know that I've ever experienced a smell that was bitter. Could it have been the alcohol vapor?

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Old 05-18-2007, 10:32 PM   #7
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Thats what I'm hoping. Either that or I got a huge wiff of C02, and that happens to be what it smells like.

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Old 05-18-2007, 10:49 PM   #8
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There isn't enough sugar in fruit for a vigorous fermentation to re-start, and often it won't appear that any fermenation is occuring. You MIGHT see a bubble or two, but if you don't, NBD.

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Old 05-19-2007, 01:51 AM   #9
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Most berries run about 5% sugar, so you had 6-7 ounces, maybe. I've never seen a krausen form when fermenting blackberries.

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Old 05-20-2007, 12:22 AM   #10
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That makes me feel a lot better. Thanks.

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