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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > Adding sugar during fermentation
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Old 07-28-2009, 09:19 PM   #1
loctones
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Default Adding sugar during fermentation

This is my third batch, and I'm trying out a Tripel (at the same time, trying my hand at creating a yeast starter and doing a first partial mash brewing). I was a bit concerned about the higher OG and fermentation, so I decided to hold off adding the sugar until later in fermentation. I have a few questions:

1) The beer will have been fermenting for about 48 hours by this evening. The krausen was starting to fall this morning. From what I read, the sugar (after being boiled into a syrup) should be added in the later stage of fermentation, but before fermentation has stopped. Is it safe to say that I'm in the later stages of fermentation when the krausen starts falling?

2) Do I need to mix in the sugar syrup in the carboy, or just pour it in? If mixing, should I try to aerate the beer, or just use a gentle swirl to mix it in? I don't know if aerating the beer would be good after fermentation has begun.

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Old 07-28-2009, 09:29 PM   #2
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1) Yes

2) No, the yeast will find the sugar.

I did this exact thing on both my Tripels and it worked great. I even waited until day 7 to add the syrup and it was still fine.

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Old 07-28-2009, 09:32 PM   #3
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I did this to a Belgian Dark Strong last winter. 3 pounds of homemade candi syrup. 1 in the boil. After the Karusen fell I waited a day to give the little beasties some rest then added the first pound. After the NEW krausen fell about 5-7 days later I did the final pound, again giving a day after krausen. Came out great.

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Old 07-28-2009, 09:33 PM   #4
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what does adding sugar do? Bring up gravity points? increase sweetness?


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Old 07-28-2009, 09:35 PM   #5
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thread steal!

When adding sugar other then the obvious extra time for fermentation are these beers that need more aging because of the higher alcohol content?

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Old 07-28-2009, 09:36 PM   #6
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what does adding sugar do? Bring up gravity points? increase sweetness?


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Gives the yeast more sugar to eat, thus more ABV. These beers are usually brewed pretty matly and then the higher ABV evens it out (correct me if I'm wrong)
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Old 07-28-2009, 09:43 PM   #7
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Correct, sporkD2. Sugar is added to Belgians to give them a drier finish. Even low ABV Belgians can use sugar for this purpose.

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Old 07-29-2009, 12:57 AM   #8
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Thanks for the tips, guys.

Revvy, was there a reason you added the 2 lbs. in separate batches? I have 2 lbs. to add, also. Do you get better attenuation by splitting splitting the sugar additions.

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Old 07-29-2009, 01:52 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loctones View Post
Thanks for the tips, guys.

Revvy, was there a reason you added the 2 lbs. in separate batches? I have 2 lbs. to add, also. Do you get better attenuation by splitting splitting the sugar additions.
The theory behind adding sugar is the fermenter is that after the yeast eat all the complex sugars they will tear more readily into the simpler sugar. Also you don't want to overwhelm the yeast by having them chew a bunch of fermentables.

Just like building a starter incrementally, if you feed the yeast any large amount of sugar in steps, it won't stress them out

Stressed out yeast produce off flavors and are prone to autolysing...Healthy yeasts aren't.

Pluss if you allow for a rest period, they will also be more apt to reproduce before tackling the new foodsource, hence new krauzens each time. Again the more yeast the less stress they are under.

Happy yeast, better attenuation.

Oh someone asked about conditioning of bigger beers. My Belgian ended up being 1.090. It took nearly 3 months to even carbonate.

And at nearly 5 months it is now starting to really shed that rocket fuel harshness...

Lazy Llama said it best in his drawing,
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