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Old 11-08-2011, 08:40 PM   #1
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Default 8% abv?!

So I just did the math on the pumpkin ale batch I racked to secondary this afternoon. The recipe was a Scotch Ale at 1.076 OG, with the addition of pumpkin and some spices. I used a starter mixed up the day before.

The SG today was 1.012. That comes out to about 8.4% ABV, after pitching on November 1st (so one week of primary fermentation). Am I insane, or does that seem a bit high?

I can say it has a HELL of a kick from the tastes I've done. But dang.

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Old 11-08-2011, 08:47 PM   #2
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It looks like it finished pretty dry, so it'll be a bit stronger. What was the FG supposed to be?

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Old 11-08-2011, 08:49 PM   #3
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How warm did the fermentation get? The kick you are experiencing might be fusel alcohol if it got into the mid 70's. Cheers!!!

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Old 11-08-2011, 09:20 PM   #4
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I keep it in my office, which stays pretty much at 69-70 24 hours a day. Don't know what the target FG was supposed to be because I modified the recipe; I assume the pumpkin changed it some. I figured I'd just wait and see what it came out at.

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Old 11-08-2011, 09:23 PM   #5
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@ 69-70F ambient the wort probably got into the mid 70's. Might be fusels. Might just be green beer that needs a little age. Wait & see is a good plan... Cheers!!!

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Old 11-08-2011, 09:28 PM   #6
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It didn't taste bad, just a bit astringent. Maybe that's the fusel alcohol, or maybe it's just green. It's less than a week old and doing well, though!

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Old 11-08-2011, 09:29 PM   #7
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Was your actual OG 1. 076, or was that what the recipe said it would be?

An 8+% beer fermenting out in one week will definitely have some early alcohol heat. It will fade with normal conditioning time.

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Old 11-08-2011, 09:33 PM   #8
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That's the recipe OG; I couldn't get a good reading when it was first done because after putting it into the carboy I realized I'd forgotten to take a sample and all that was left was some pumpkin chunks and slurry. It was at 1.022 a few days ago, but has been quiet for two days now.

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Old 11-08-2011, 09:39 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyclometh View Post
That's the recipe OG; I couldn't get a good reading when it was first done because after putting it into the carboy I realized I'd forgotten to take a sample and all that was left was some pumpkin chunks and slurry. It was at 1.022 a few days ago, but has been quiet for two days now.
Without an accurate reading of your OG, you won't know the alcohol content. A finishing gravity of 1.012 is only relevant if you know the starting point. An alcohol heat has a back of the throat “burn”. The astringency you are tasting may simply be the youth of the hops and immaturity of the beer. Either way, it will turn out fine. Just try and get that reading next time so you know whether you’re drinking/serving a 4.5% beer or a 9% beer.
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Old 11-08-2011, 09:52 PM   #10
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Since it was an extract, I feel pretty confident it was close to the recipe OG (that LME/DME had to go somewhere and it didn't go anywhere but the boil and the carboy). It may have been off some, but I doubt by more than 1-2%.

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