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Old 02-03-2013, 07:21 PM   #1
waxwader
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Default Hefeweizen fermentation time

It's seems very clear that the vast majority believe that 3 weeks in a primary, then bottle, then age 3 more weeks is a good practice (no secondary). However I also read that Hefeweizen's mature much faster and should be bottled sooner. This is my first Hef and second batch total. I'm planning to do the normal 3 week/ 3 week schedule. What do y'all think? It's a partial mash, fermenting at 68-69 and I pitched WB-06 yeast.

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Old 02-03-2013, 08:26 PM   #2
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That schedule is fine. You can probably shorten it a bit, but why rush things.

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Old 02-03-2013, 09:44 PM   #3
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WB-06 has a range of 59-75f. 68f is to warm of ferment temp and will give you some of flavors associated with wheat yeasts. You will be better to ferment around the lower end at about 59f. Your schedule should be fine, but maturing faster to bottle sooner is incorrect. Fermentation takes as long as it takes and Hefe's are'nt really faster than anyother ale. The maturation of a beer generally happens during ageing after bottling, but Hefe's are better when consumed younger rather than after being matured. Hope this makes sense...

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Old 02-03-2013, 09:50 PM   #4
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Hefe's, and wheat yeast strains in general are very vigorous fermenters. Often fermentation is done within 5-7 days or so. But as Nuggethead said, never put your yeast on a schedule. It's done when it's done. And at that temp, It's going to take a touch longer.

All that said, when fermentation is done, there's no reason to delay getting it into bottles. I personally find Hefe's start stretching their legs about 3 weeks after fermentation has stopped, and keep their full character for about 2 months, but are still tasty up to 4 months. I would advise to drink it as fresh as possible, but don't rush it. An extra week either in primary or the bottle will only serve to meld the flavors better.

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Old 02-03-2013, 11:57 PM   #5
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Thanks for the input. I'm hearing run my planned schedule, but drink them fast. I can do that. However, I was targeting 66-68 degrees because that is right in the middle of the 59-75 range. Seems like in all other cases the middle of the road is safest.

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