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Old 11-02-2007, 10:23 PM   #1
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Default Should fermentation have finished so soon?

Okay, this was one of my first batches and I wanted to get some opinions. I made an Imperial Stout this time, which used the following ingredients:

9 lbs dry dark malt extract

1 lb dry light malt extract

1 lb chocolate malt

8 oz roasted barley

4 oz black patent malt

1.5 oz Galena hops (bittering)

2 oz Fuggles hops (flavor/aroma)

1 tsp Irish Moss

Wyeast 1084 Irish Ale

So I pitched the yeast at around 9pm on Tuesday night and didn't see any bubbling activity in the airlock until about 1am on Thursday. It went crazy for several hours and then continued with regular fermentation after that until this morning (Friday). Now it seems that the fermentation is almost complete, and there is very little bubbling in the airlock. I would have thought that with such a high gravity stout that fermentation would have gone on stronger for a longer period of time. Is this unusual for it to be slowed down this much by now?

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Old 11-02-2007, 10:26 PM   #2
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What was the starting gravity?

What is the gravity now??

What was the temperature of the fermenter during fermentation?

airlock activity is not a great indication of 'is it done?'...hydrometer readings are.

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Old 11-02-2007, 10:28 PM   #3
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+1 on the above.

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Old 11-02-2007, 10:40 PM   #4
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The starting gravity was 1.091 and I haven't tested it since adding the yeast.

I guess that you answered my question though. I just assumed that there would be more bubbling activity for a longer period of time. I'm going to let it ferment in my primary for another 5 days or so and then transfer it to my secondary for about a week.

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Last edited by fightguy; 11-02-2007 at 10:54 PM.
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Old 11-02-2007, 10:44 PM   #5
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Also, do you guys think enough hops were used? Do the specialty grains add bitterness?

In retrospect, it seems like I should have used more hops in this recipe

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Old 11-02-2007, 10:44 PM   #6
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How about checking the gravity again?

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Old 11-02-2007, 10:55 PM   #7
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Don't you think it's too soon? I thought that I should wait at least 5 days before testing the gravity on it. Maybe I'm wrong, but I have never heard of a beer that completes fermentation in less than 72 hours

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Old 11-02-2007, 11:20 PM   #8
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Leaving it in primary for five days then taking a reading is fine.
Leaving it in primary for 5 days then moving with out taking a reading is guessing.
I'm not saying move it now.
I am suggesting that if in doubt then wait or take a reading or do both.

But don't guess.

Quote:
but I have never heard of a beer that completes fermentation in less than 72 hours
That is not correct.

But saying that for a beer that is OG 1098 I would not touch it for 2 - 4 weeks.
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Old 11-02-2007, 11:20 PM   #9
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A beer that big should definitely take longer than 5 days. Did you directly pitch the yeast, or did you make a starter? What is your fermenting temp?

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Old 11-03-2007, 08:01 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orfy
Leaving it in primary for five days then taking a reading is fine.
Leaving it in primary for 5 days then moving with out taking a reading is guessing.
I'm not saying move it now.
I am suggesting that if in doubt then wait or take a reading or do both.

But don't guess.

But saying that for a beer that is OG 1098 I would not touch it for 2 - 4 weeks.
When you say you wouldn't touch it for 2-4 weeks, are you saying you would leave it in the primary that long or that is how long you would wait total before bottling?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ScubaSteve
A beer that big should definitely take longer than 5 days. Did you directly pitch the yeast, or did you make a starter? What is your fermenting temp?
I didn't make a starter, but I added a packet of Nottingham yeast in addition to the Wyeast pack. It is currently fermenting at 21C
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Last edited by fightguy; 11-03-2007 at 08:30 AM.
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