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Old 02-04-2006, 05:25 PM   #1
Jazz
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Default Belgian Tripple Trouble

Hi there. New member here. I used a Williams Brewing kit to make my first Belgian Tripple beer this year. (Been brewing very casually for a year or so, on and off, but never tried one of these.) Everything in the brewing process appeared to go normally and as per the kit's instructions. Starting gravity 1.064, finishing gravity 1.029.

I bottled 9 days ago using the bottling sugar included in the kit. Today was the day the instructions suggest moving from my initial storage area (kept at a constant 68 degress F, plus or minus a degree) to a cooler place. (My basement stays right around 55F all winter and is great for storing beer and wine.)

I succumbed to tempation and opened one bottle and poured it into a clear pint glass. First I'll say that I don't seem to have messed up anywhere with recipie or sanitation. The beer has an excellent smell, and no off tastes at all. While it's not exactly like a Chimay, of course, it has a great, full, hearty taste like a Belgian ale. But there's a problem or two.

While I heard a satisfying little "hiss" when I popped the top, a normal pour into the pint glass produced not very much head at all. (Maybe 1/4 to 1/2 inch of head) There were some small bubbles rising in the glass, so carbonation is definitely happening, but it's really not very carbonated. Also, the clarity of the beer is simply terrible. It's very cloudy and you can't see through it at all, really.

So two questions for you people experienced with this style of beer. Should I move the beer to the cooler area in the basement today as per instructions, or keep it in the 68F room a while longer to try to build up more carbonation? Will this belgian continue to build carbonation at the cooler temp if I move it?

And as to the clarity, have I just made a really cloudy beer, or will this style of beer continue to "settle out" and get more clear in the next week or two at 55F? I'll drink it either way, but the other, easier beers I've made before were all much more clear than this.

Thanks.

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Old 02-04-2006, 06:02 PM   #2
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Nine days at 68F seems a little short for full carbonation. Assuming you used corn sugar, I'd think it will take 2-3 weeks at least at that temp...move em up closer to mid 70's to make them carb faster.

Carefull if you do get them warmer tho...from your hydrometer reading, it doesn't look like the beer was really finished fermenting. With an OG of 1.064, I would have thought you'd want to get down under 1.020 at least before bottling. How long did you ferment before bottling? If it was under 2 weeks, I would think that that would explain your clarity problem.

Oh yeh...welcome to the forum. How 'bout them Yankees!

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Old 02-04-2006, 06:08 PM   #3
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Sorry, that was a typo. OG should have read 1.084. Teach me to type before I start drinking I guess. The kit said finishing gravity of 1.028, so 1.029 seemed close enough.

How long did I ferment? As per instructions, I had it in the primary for seven days, then in the secondary for fifteen days. There seemed to be no more activity in the secondary at the time of bottling, and the gravity was what the kit predicted, so I went ahead and bottled. But from your answer (which I thank you for) I take it I should leave it in the den for a while longer before storing and just hope that it falls more clear?

Thanks a bunch.

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Old 02-04-2006, 06:17 PM   #4
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Ok, I take back everything I said (except for how bout them yankees). Sounds like you were done, and gave it plenty of time to ferment.

Yes, leave it in your den a while longer, until it's carbed to your taste. I usually leave a few in the warmest part of the house, either next to the oven, or high on a bookshelf in the warmest room. That way I have a few that will carb faster.

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Old 02-04-2006, 09:01 PM   #5
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Regarding the cloudiness, I brewed up a batch back in the fall and when I bottled it I siphoned too much of the yeast sediment into my bottling bucket. The result was two cases of very cloudy beer. It took awhile (probably about 4 months to be honest), but it has not cleared up. One little trick you can do is about once a week give each of your bottles a little spin to help get stuff off the sides of the bottles so it can settle to the bottom.

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