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Old 02-11-2011, 06:45 PM   #1
Jsmith82
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Default Corn Sugar and BIG Beer - question on steps...

I have noticed that a lot of Imperial beers utilize a gracious amount of Corn Sugar in the recipe thus bringing the alcohol content up and / or countering the absurd amount of "bitter" time frame hops being used, or vice versa. This has me curious, at what point do most add the sugar or will this differ per recipe?

If I wanted to go complete mad scientist and brew an IIPA with an outlandish ABV hidden behind the taste, would I want to add sugar pre-boil or after the wort has cooled and I'm getting ready to pitch? The 120 clone for instance has the brewer adding sugar during fermentation which seems totally odd to me, but that would be about par for that beer...

Would boiling the sugar with the grain / extract cause saturation and the sugar itself would begin to solidify or would this simply breakdown and become part of the wort itself, nothing lost / no effect to the sugar?

Josh

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Old 02-11-2011, 06:59 PM   #2
mlanoue
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When I made the Northern Brewer No. 1 kit a few weeks ago I just dumped in the four bags of sugar(!) at flameout. I really don't think it matters too much, but I saw no sense in boiling the stuff. It seems to have worked out fine.

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Old 02-11-2011, 07:03 PM   #3
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Your best bet is after primary fermentation is over. You can just throw it in, swirl the fermenter to get the yeast back in suspension, and your yeast will start up again and eat all your sugar.

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Old 02-11-2011, 07:10 PM   #4
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The reason some add sugar after fermentation starts to slow is so that you have enough yeast to finish the fermentation.

If you brew a huge beer and use liquid yeast, make sure that you make a big-assed starter. Don't think you can get by without one. An alternative is 2 (11.5G) packs of dry yeast (no starter needed for it).

Oh, and boiling corn sugar is fine and reccomended to keep any nasties from being added to your beer. Adding it without boiling (in a little water) and cooling is not a good idea.

Also: Fusels are from high fermentation temps--not from adding sugar.

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Old 02-11-2011, 08:45 PM   #5
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Big beers use corn sugar because it ferments out completely and it helps keep the final gravity out of the cloyingly sweet range.

If you are using a large amount of corn sugar in your recipe then I would recommend you add it after primary fermentation is done. When yeast eat regular sugar they are unable to create the enzyme needed to break down the more complex sugars found in wort. A small amount of corn sugar won't be much of an issue because there will be plenty of yeast to eat the complex sugar as well.

I brewed a saison last summer and added 1lb corn sugar to the primary after boiling it and letting it cool to room temp. This was a small part of the grain bill so I probably could have just added it at flameout.

I just brewed a black IPA and added 1lb of corn sugar at flameout. Fermentation seems to be going just fine.

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Old 02-14-2011, 12:55 PM   #6
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Good stuff.. Thank you for the information

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