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Old 08-06-2012, 11:37 PM   #1
PistolPetesPints
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Default Too hot in Texas for a wheat?

So it's a little hot down here this time of year, 100+, and I live in an older rental home so the AC struggles a bit. I just brewed up a wheat and am a little worried about fermentation temp and if this will end up too phenolic to enjoy. My house hovers around 79-80. Comments, thoughts, experiences on how this may go for me? Recipe follows:
6# Wheat LME (60 min boil)
1# Amber LME (60 min boil)
1# Wheat malt, steeped for 30 min prior to boil
1# Six row, steeped for 30 min prior to boil
1 oz Perle for 60 min
1 oz Hallertauer 10 min
WYeast 3068 (This sucker is a lively one! Bubble, bubble...)


Also, advice on bottle carbing? Been reading it can require at least 7.5 oz of corn sugar versus the normal 5.

Thanks everyone,
Cheers.

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Old 08-06-2012, 11:44 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PistolPetesPints View Post
I just brewed up a wheat and am a little worried about fermentation temp and if this will end up too phenolic to enjoy. My house hovers around 79-80.
Way too hot. Quick, get it in a water bath and add some ice. Freeze some water bottles and add those periodically. Cover it with a wet T-shirt. The beer will not be very good if it's fermented above 70F, and will probably be undrinkable above 80F. Keep in mind the beer produces heat, so it's actually warmer than the temperature in your house.

Quote:
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Also, advice on bottle carbing? Been reading it can require at least 7.5 oz of corn sugar versus the normal 5.
I'd use a priming calculator like the one over at Tasty Brew. Where they have "temperature", put in the highest temperature the beer reached.

Good luck with your brew!
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Old 08-06-2012, 11:46 PM   #3
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I used to have that problem too. I put a washtub down in the closet and made a cheap swamp cooler with water and ice bottles from the freezer. Wet some towels to cover the fermenter up, and switched them and the ice bottles out daily and made it through. I am sure the temps were less than ideal, but the beer was drinkable. Good luck and hope it turns out great.

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Old 08-06-2012, 11:47 PM   #4
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I live in the DFW area as well!

Brewing in the summer is rough, so temperature control is crucial. I use the water bath method. Place your fermentor in a water bath and float ice packs or frozen water bottles in it to control temps. Unless you are brewing some sort of a Belgian Ale, 79-80 is very warm especially considering fermentation temps are usually 3+ degrees higher than ambient temps.

Cheers

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Old 08-08-2012, 06:28 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KISS Brew View Post
Way too hot. Quick, get it in a water bath and add some ice. Freeze some water bottles and add those periodically. Cover it with a wet T-shirt. The beer will not be very good if it's fermented above 70F, and will probably be undrinkable above 80F. Keep in mind the beer produces heat, so it's actually warmer than the temperature in your house.
This. I live in central TX as well and have had reasonable success with the homemade swamp cooler method. Try to find the coolest place in the house (sounds obvious but the answer may be different during the day when you are away) and keep it there. My wheat turned out pretty reasonable, all things considered.
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Old 08-08-2012, 08:53 PM   #6
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Thanks for the advice everyone, I appreciate it. I will be sure to apply this to my batches going forward. I just bottled an IPA last night that I probably should have done this for as well. It tasted good from my hydro reading though, guess we'll see in 2-3 weeks. Looking forward to this being a non-issue in the winter!

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Old 08-09-2012, 04:57 AM   #7
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Put the fermenter in a shallow tub of water and wrap the fermenter in a towel. Point a fan at the tub an fermenter, as the towel soaks up the water the fan will evaporate the water cooling the fermenter, it works like a swamp cooler.

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Old 08-09-2012, 09:21 PM   #8
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The batch was pitched this past Sunday, so has been fermenting for 4 full days and I've had zero time to go get these supplies. Is it worth it to still impliment this or is the damage done from the initial heavy fermentation? Either way I plan on leaving this in a long primary, at least 3-4 weeks, maybe 5?, hoping the yeast will carry out some cleanup and possibly get rid of some of the potentially phenolic characteristics.

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Old 08-09-2012, 09:43 PM   #9
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IMO you should be fine. I did a hefe last year (in Austin, I'm in the DFW area now) with WLP300 in these high temps and people who tried it loved it. It made a bubblegummy flavor that really worked well.

You brewed it right? Might as well taste it after 2 weeks of fermenting and see how it goes! You may like it.

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Old 08-09-2012, 09:58 PM   #10
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I bought a chest freezer to use as a fermentation unit. It's just too damn hot down here to do anything other than a saison in ambient temps, and too expensive to keep a house any cooler down here.

Good luck, but check craigs list. You can find deals on chest freezers. The 7.1 I use holds two carboys no problem, and when you are ready to bottle or keg, you can easily drop to crash cooling temps.

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