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Old 06-15-2011, 08:01 AM   #1
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Default Brown Ale Kreusen never fell

I have read a few threads about wheat beers in which the kreusen did not fall but what about a nut brown ale? I brewed my very first batch using a Black Rock Nut Brown Ale kit (but substituted Safale S-04 for the kit yeast and added light and dark spraymalt instead of sugar). I did a 30 minute boil of about 6 gallons (didn't want to boil off the pre-hop). I got the wort down to pitching temp in about 40 minutes with an ice bath It didn't evaporate much wort so I filled a 20 liter/ 5 gallon bucket with about 19 liters (had to toss some wort). I rehydrated the dry yeast and the fermentation went crazy on the first 24 hours (almost blew the bucket lid off even with a blow-off tube). After 36 hours, everything was calm and I replaced the blow off with an air- lock.

It's been in the fermenter now for 2 weeks. The wort temp has kept steady at 24C/75F. Very little visible yeast action but the kreusen never fell. Not concerned as much as curious. Too little headroom? Too hot (24C/75F was in the acceptable range for this yeast according to Fermentis)? Should I open the fermenter? I know..Relax and have a homebrew.

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Old 06-15-2011, 09:49 AM   #2
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What's the gravity telling you? Is it done fermenting or not?

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Old 06-15-2011, 09:56 AM   #3
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Morning, R. Its good to see I'm not the only person up at this hour

Ikkyu, don't worry about the krausen. Like R said, the issue is whether or not fermentation is done. It won't hurt you to take a reading now, if you want. Or you can leave it for another week or two and then take a reading.

FYI, at 75 F, US-04 is likely to throw off a lot of estery flavors. I generally try to ferment most of my ales lower than that. Most, I keep the fermentation temps around 62-65. Some styles call for a high temp, like some Belgians, or Saisons.

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Old 06-15-2011, 10:04 AM   #4
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Old 06-15-2011, 11:38 AM   #5
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Same thing happened to me with a belgian wit. 2 weeks in the primary and I opened it up to take a reading and there was a full head still floating around. I put the primary in a cooler spot for the next week (on the basement floor ~60 degrees F) and I bumped it every time I went into the basement. Not violently to oxigenate but enough to get the liquid moving. Week 3 the krausen had fallen and I kegged it. That's what I did.

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Old 06-15-2011, 11:56 AM   #6
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Thank you for your replies. Sorry for the early start but I am posting from Japan (current time 8:48 PM). I have not done a hydrometer reading yet. I was waiting for the krausen to fall. Actually with all the posts about leaving the wort in the primary for four weeks or longer I was going to wait and just take a reading when I bottled. I figured a month was long enough that fermenting would be done.

As for the temp, I was following the Fermentis PDF that said up to 24C/75F was okay. So if I I take a reading now, should I open the top of the bucket and skim off all the krausen first?Worried about contaminants and such...

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Old 06-15-2011, 12:01 PM   #7
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One more thing. I live in an apartment in Yokohama. There are no cooler places to put the fermenter in and swamp cooler is not really doable considering the limited space of most Japanese apartments. I would love to turn on the A/C but the Tokyo area is on a serious conservation drive due to Fukushima. 24C/75F is actually cool for June.

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Old 06-15-2011, 12:04 PM   #8
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I took a reading through the krausen. I just used my sanitized thief and pushed the krausen to the side and snuck it down the side of the bucket.

My opinion is that I will leave the beer alone for at least 2 or 3 weeks before I even think of checking the gravity. If you open it to check gravity and there is krausen on top take the reading anyway. Just don't bottle or keg if you are worried about the krausen. If you don't care and it tastes good bottle or keg as long as it's done. That's just my opinion.

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Old 06-15-2011, 02:10 PM   #9
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You could just leave it until it tastes good then put it in the fridge. I would think that would take care of the krausen.

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Old 06-15-2011, 03:24 PM   #10
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Thanks for the suggestions so far...

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