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Old 08-07-2010, 03:23 AM   #1
guitarsophist
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Default Belgian Pale Ale

I am brewing a Belgian Pale Ale from a recipe and ingredients supplied by my LHBS. This is my third extract brew. My first was so so, my second quite good (an American Pale Ale). The yeast is Wyeast Belgian Strong Ale. I started doing the Belgian because I was expecting pretty hot summer weather, and I don't have temperature control other than a water bath/swamp cooler thing. I used a smack pack which inflated, but I did not do a starter. The OG was probably around 1.054. It took off like gangbusters for about three days, and then slowed down. There were no bubbles in the lock for a week and a half or so. After three weeks, I was going to bottle it, but the gravity was about 1.015, and it tasted yeasty and sweet, so I decided to let it go another week. I took it out of the water bath and swirled it around a bit, and it started bubbling in the lock again, about once every 30 seconds, and it has been doing that all week. Today, the gravity was about 1.013. It tasted much better, with some nice fruity notes, but it is still a bit sweet, and not clear at all. Even in the sample beaker, however, the yeast were starting to drop to the bottom.

My question: Should I rack to secondary at this point it help it clear, and give it another week? Or should I leave it in primary another week or so?

I kind of wish I had stuck to simple stuff like the APA. But this is interesting.

Thanks,

John

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Old 08-07-2010, 03:43 AM   #2
Nateo
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I've started doing starters for every beer I make. The quality of the fermentation and the thoroughness have been improved over just pitching smack packs. Also, make sure to thoroughly aerate your wort. Neither of those will help you right now, though.

Leave it in the primary until you're sure it's done fermenting.

I've used that yeast before, and had no problems with it clearing. I do think I rushed it a bit and left the beer slightly under-attenuated. It was in primary for 3 weeks and secondary for one.

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Old 08-07-2010, 04:04 AM   #3
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I have a Saison in my other fermenter, and I did a starter for that. I will do starters from now on, except for dry yeast.

Thanks,

John

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